If you or anyone in your house has an iPad (or iPhone) you have probably wondered when your student’s textbooks will stop weighing 10 pounds each and start fitting neatly into that device. The answer to that question? Today.

Download the Inkling app from your iPad and grab a free sample chapter to take a look. (If you like to cook, absolutely check out the free chapter of The Professional Chef to get a taste of your student’s future while upping your own skills in the kitchen.)  In fact, you don’t even really need an iPad since Inkling works across the Web, iPad, and iPhone. These books, typically the sort of high-end reference that requires a strong back and a hefty chunk of change are not just text replicas. They are built from the ground up to take full advantage of the technology. Plus, you can buy just one chapter if that's all you need. You can also read it on your iPad, iPhone, or the Web and it will remember where you left off. Extra perk: you won't lose your expensive textbooks if you lose your iPad.

Click here for a video that shows how it works.

So why are your students still lugging those massive tomes around in their backpack? Because this is just the beginning. The folks at Inkling tell me they are working fast to get schools to use their texts and that many colleges are already embracing the technology. And Inkling is working with over 60 high schools nationwide, primarily in AP and honors courses. Inkling titles are being used in a variety of courses across grades 9 - 12 as well.

In fact, the go-to biology textbook Campbell Biology has already been built as an Inkling text. Here is an intro. So you might find it in your student’s backpack soon enough. But then why would they need the backpack?

Christina Tynan-Wood writes the Family Tech column for Family Circle, and is the author of “How to Be a Geek Goddess.”You can find her at GeekGirlfriends.com.