Remember the days when you had to lug around a ton of heavy, clunky textbooks all over school?  Well, it looks like Apple may be putting those days long behind us.

At an event in New York City yesterday, Apple announced the new iBooks 2 app for iPad, which will now includes textbook capabilities. This means students can now purchase textbooks on their iPads, and do everything they would normally do with a textbook (highlight, take notes, reference, etc.) all on their iPads. Given the wild popularity of iPads with college students, this could very well be the beginning of the end for the physical textbook. And if it works, I'd like to see this kind of technology be made readily available for all students of all ages.

Also announced at the event was the new iBooks Author app, an app that lets people write and publish their own eBooks. It's simple, user-friendly, and eliminates a lot of the obstacles aspiring writers face in getting their work to the public.