Important information from Apple if you do any publishing on the iBookstore.
|We recently added the following new features and updates to iBooks, iTunes Producer, and iTunes Connect:
Textbooks Available in All Territories
Interest Age for Children and Teens
iTunes Producer 3.0
Download iTunes Producer 3.0 from Deliver Your Content in iTunes Connect.
Sizing Images in EPUB
To define a dynamic height for an element like an image, use the “viewport height unit” instead. A “viewport height unit” is equal to one percent of the height of the initial containing block and is a dynamic sizing element.
For example, to assign a dynamic height to an image, use:
Enabling Ticket Notifications
Things We’re Hoping For In iBooks Author 3.0
On Oct. 22, Tuesday of next week, fellow Auburn graduate Tim Cook is slated to take the stage to reveal all that’s new with Apple and as usual, that is primarily going to focus on new iPads, MacBook Pros, the Mac Pro and the new OS X version called Mavericks. What he also likely will do is include a reference to books for iPad and iBooks Author, but those announcements and presentations often seem like he’s either got to get to the rest room or his car is double parked out on the street and he has to leave. Sadly, we truly wish Apple was going to place more of a priority on books for iPad as they truly are the way of the future and the best digital learning tool available for kids of all ages in existence.
So in Tuesday’s announcement, we’re hoping for some announcements about improvements to the free software that can be used to make books for iPad. Ultimately, we’d like to see these three things in iBooks Author 3.0.
1. Ability to change the background color in images v. galleries-Presently, when one loads a photo image into a book for iPad and sets it so that it can be tapped and expanded to the 2048 x 1536 pixel range of the screen, depending on how large the image is, it is going to display on a white background. Apple has said over the phone that this is largely done because images can be .pdfs and they think those display better against a white background, but in a world where not everything is that simple, we really wish they’d add one more button or tick box to change this presentation feature. We have a client right now who is insistent that images in his work should appear on a black background and the only way to try to trick iBooks Author into doing that is to make all images one-image galleries, and well, that’s not working out real well because the software also names the images as galleries when there’s really only one image.
2. Ability to leave social note thread discussions within a book-Social discussions within a group project are the way of the future. Already Apple has added “share” functionality within books for iPad, but we think it should be expanded so that teachers, authors, and classmates can all leave live notes right there in a group discussion in context to the pages where they’re happening. This would open an entirely wider array of functionality and effectiveness in discussions.
3. Ability to read books for iPad on any mobile device, not just on Mavericks Macs and iPads-Think Quicktime here. It works on any computer platform. That’s what’s needed for books for iPad that presently only work on the iPad or iPad mini. At the announcement, Apple is going to say that these books for iPad now will work in the new desktop operating system Mavericks, but what is really needed is a common platform that will make them available on a Kindle, Nook, Nexus 7, Surface, PC, ANYTHING. The 3D imagery, the interactive widgets, all of the stuff that sets books for iPad apart from the horrifically limited functionality of EPUB 2.0.1 and EPUB 3.0 need to be made available in a Quicktime-type of widget/app that can be loaded onto these other platforms. Apple would significantly expand its revenue base for the sale of these books and capture a greater share of the book market. It makes absolutely no sense at all to keep this as an Apple-limited product.
Will any of this come about Tuesday? We can only hope. And Tim Cook, when you talk about books for iPad and iBooks Author, please, slow down a bit. All the other stuff is cool, but there are those of us out here in the wilderness who are forging a path to the future with these great tools and we think they deserve a lot more time and attention.
EDITORS NOTE: Last Friday in San Antonio, I gave a presentation about books for iPad that you can download for free and see some of the cool 3D images, puzzles, interactive timelines, and tools I reference above. If you need these made for your own classes, schools, or companies, please give me a call today at 214-364-7240. A copy of my presentation is available for download from a public link on Dropbox.
- Apple to Add New iBooks Support to the iPhone Next Week?
- Apple Gets Ready For iPad 5 Event
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- The ‘new iPad’: What’s in a name?
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- Apple iPad 5, iPad Mini 2 and MacBook Pro release date leaks out
- Support for Interactive E-Books Made with iBooks Author May Be Coming Soon to iPhone
- New iPads expected at Apple’s 22 October event
- iBooks Author support for the iPhone should be on Apple’s to-do list
Donny Claxton Speaks At Central Texas Learning and Technology Summit
The focus was on mobile learning and the technologies that make it all work.
A copy of my presentation is available for download from a public link on Dropbox. If you have an iPad, you’ll need to download the file first to your computer and then load it into iTunes before syncing it to your iPad. (And of course, you must be running at least iOS 5.1 and have iBooks 3.)
Even I was amazed at some of the presentations and developments taking place in the world of mobile apps and technologies. It’s inspiring to see some things that we only could have dreamed about a few years ago are quickly coming to fruition and even are already behind the curve, even though they’re likely still very much ahead of most.
George Saltsman from Abilene Christian University, who helped lead us into the development of books for iPad also spoke about changes that are coming in the pedagogy of education, while Dr. Robbie Melton from the University of Tennessee’s Board Regents showed off some amazing new gadgets and apps that are changing the workforce around the world.
FROM MY PRESENTATION, you will see a discussion about many of the amazing widgets and products we’ve built for books for iPad and a healthy discussion about whether or not we should even continue to call these products “books.” Also discussed are some of the variations and differences in this emerging field of technology, like the difference between EPUB 2.0.1 and EPUB 3.0 and what those two things mean to someone trying to decide on an eReader or an author trying to figure out which platform they should be publishing their materials on.
After my presentation, I was flooded with requests for more information, business cards and LinkedIn requests.
If you have any questions about how to make an eBook in EPUB or an interactive book for the iPad using 3D animations, movies, interactive timelines, puzzles and more, please reach out and let me know.
When God Redefines The Possible Book for iPad on iBookstore
JOHN ED MATHISON MINISTRY PUBLISHES INNOVATIVE, INTERACTIVE BOOK FOR IPAD DESIGNED TO EXPAND MINISTRY WORK WORLDWIDE
‘When God Redefines The Possible’ Now Available AT WGRTP.com
MONTGOMERY, AL—Former Senior Minister of Frazer Memorial United Methodist Church in Montgomery, John Ed Mathison, is making history again. This time, he’s teamed up with a former Alabama governor’s press secretary to release an innovative, interactive book exclusively for the iPad that will change how people around the world follow a daily devotional or use social media to hold “Sunday School classes worldwide.”
Mathison recently released When God Redefines The Possible on Apple’s iBookstore, a title he published in paperback in November. The new work, complete with 22 videos, interactive puzzles, quizzes and Bible references can be used on the more than 100 million iPad and iPad mini devices in use around the world.
The book can be downloaded from the iBookstore by visiting WGRTP.com.
Production began in January with Claxton Creative, LLC of Dallas, led by Donald J. Claxton, former the former press secretary of Gov. Fob James and assistant press secretary to former Gov. Guy Hunt.
“We have taken a book printed in black and white and brought it to life with short video clips in multiple chapters that are designed to help readers prepare their minds for the text that follows by asking some important questions or giving some insight about what they’re about to read,” Mathison said. “With the rapid adoption of iPads in schools all across Montgomery and around the world, this is the new type of curriculum tool that readers young and old are finding more and more engaging and enriching in their study.
“It only makes sense to apply this same technology to something like a daily devotional where people can use these technological advances to draw closer to God and use social media to draw closer to other believers and non-believers around the world,” Mathison said.
Mathison’s book, which is 109-pages in print, expanded to 192 pages on the iPad and contains more than 50 chapters of colorful and important ministry lessons and encourages readers to see that God is still doing miracles, even in today’s turbulent times.
The videos, produced by another former aide to Gov. Hunt, Stacey Rimer Stakely, and shot at Frazer by Matthew Gamble, feature Mathison talking about healthy eating, God doing things in people’s lives they could not have anticipated, and even references to his late father, Si Mathison.
“John Ed Mathison has been a leader in ministry for almost 50 years and the exciting thing about this book for iPad is that it proves he’s still a leader in ministry even though he’s been retired from Frazer for a couple of years now,” Claxton said. “We have worked with him to produce a new tool that uses the latest in technology to help spread the word of God. That, in and of itself, is an example of God redefining the possible, as the technology for this didn’t even exist 17 months ago.”
Claxton said versions for readers using Amazon’s Kindle, Barnes and Noble’s Nook are near completion as well.
“John Ed’s use of digital books will make his work available to anyone in the world with a computer, tablet or smartphone,” Claxton said.
John Ed, who served 36 years as Senior Minister of Frazer Memorial United Methodist Church in Montgomery, said he is excited to begin this new phase of his ministry.
“I have said before that ‘it is easy to have a Gutenberg mentality when we live in a Google reality.’ and taking converting my writings and teachings into a digital format so that people around the world can share and interact with each other through the social media tools and interactivity functions within the book is an example of where ministry must grow in order to reach those needing and yearning to hear the word of God,” Mathison said. “I’m excited for the potentials this brings for ministry. God really has redefined the possible.”
Claxton is no stranger to innovation and change. He was dubbed as the “foremost student iconoclast” in Dr. John Fair’s 1990 book about Auburn University at Montgomery’s first 20 years. In July 1994, he made candidate Fob James the first statewide candidate in Alabama to have a published email address. In March of 1995, he began writing the original pages for the state of Alabama’s website, which was launched and featured as the lead story in the Montgomery Advertiser in August 1995. In 2001 he became the communications director for the Dallas Independent School District, then the 12th largest school district in the nation and helped pass the largest education bond program in Texas history—a $1.37 billion program. In 2012, his company began producing books for the iPad, including Dr. Mark Van Stone’s interactive text 2012: Science & Prophecy of the Ancient Maya and There’s A Zombie In My Treehouse by Ken Plume, John Robinson and Len Peralta of Atlanta. The company also has begun production on a book for Learning Forward, one of the largest professional development organizations in the world for schoolteachers.
Claxton Creative, LLC
Claxton Creative is a Dallas-based full-service public relations firm focused on the development of interactive, multi-touch publications for mobile devices worldwide.
John Ed Mathison Leadership Ministries
The John Ed Mathison Leadership Ministries was formed in 2008, as John Ed reached the mandatory retirement age of the United Methodist Church. The ministry is a member of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability. The mission of the ministry is to bring honor and glory to the Kingdom of God by training leaders for Kingdom work. John Ed actively speaks to churches, conferences and leadership training programs on a local, national and global scale. More information is available at www.JohnEdMathison.org.
- God Redefines The Possible With John Ed Mathison Ministry Book For iPad
- Our Latest Web Design – MathisonInteriors.com
- What Book Did You Read Last? How’d you choose it?
- Balance Ragged Lines InDesign Layout Stopping Full Margin Layout
- Oncor Blog Presentation
- The Social Express Social Skills Program Selected for a New iPad Apps for Kids Book
- Premiering film “Home Run” hits home with United Methodist Church Recovery Ministries
- Do You Highlight In EPUB Books? Books for iPad?
- The Print To eBook Conversion – A New Way To Look At ‘Books’
- The Essence of File Management In A Terabyte World
Oncor Blog Presentation
Recently I was invited to speak during a panel discussion at Oncor in Dallas. I began a blog in 2004 using the name of TheDadsCenter.org. Somewhere in 2007 I began using my fabled name, @DaddyClaxton on Twitter and then bought the domain. The original “Daddy Claxton” was mentioned in a song by the late, Roy Claxton Acuff, who apparently changed the name from Carter or something else. As we created our business to build websites and now design and produce books for iPad and books for Kindle and Nook, came the development of this site.
To download the book for iPad, simply go to this Dropbox address and download. (https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/2269153/Oncor/ClaxtonCreative%20Blogger.ibooks)
To download the PDF version, here’s the link. (https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/2269153/Oncor/ClaxtonCreative%20Blogger.pdf)
- Oncor Electric Delivery says expansion is limited by parent company’s debt (star-telegram.com)
- Oncor’s “Phantom Tax” Windfall May Become Permanent As Bill Hits Texas House Floor (blogs.dallasobserver.com)
- Report: Oncor is collecting $200 million a year from customers for taxes it never paid (bizbeatblog.dallasnews.com)
- Oncor keeps millions it collects from ratepayers as ‘federal taxes’ (star-telegram.com)
- Energy Future’s Woes Stunt Oncor’s Texas Power Growth Ambitions – Bloomberg (bloomberg.com)
- What the next Kindle will look like (reviews.cnet.com)
- Kindle vs. Nook vs. iPad: Which e-book reader should you buy? (epicagear.com)
- North Texans Spend Millions On Non-Existent Federal Taxes (dfw.cbslocal.com)
- Oncor Schedules First Quarter 2013 Investor Call (sys-con.com)
- Fuze Meeting probes iPad’s business chops (reviews.cnet.com)
The Print To eBook Conversion–A New Way To Look At ‘Books’
At Claxton Creative here in Dallas, we’ve done a number of print to e-Book and iBooks Author-generated conversions and one thing becomes immediately clear throughout this process–the print to e-Book conversion process shouldn’t be a matter of just replacing the print copy into digitized form. No, it should be much, much more.
eBook v. iBooks Author
On top of that, we take things a step further than most competitors we’ve seen online. Yes, the EPUB formatted book can be read on many more devices than those built with iBooks Author, which only work on iPad and iPad mini. However, the functionality of a book made with iBooks Author versus one in an EPUB 2.0.1 or even the “new” EPUB 3 format leave a world of difference in between.
We’d like to bang someone in the marketing department at Apple over the head for their lack in marketing the difference between the two. In the video below even, we’ve shown you the contrast between 3D imagery in an EPUB 3 book and that of Dr. Mark Van Stone’s 2012: Science & Prophecy of the Ancient Maya. As we like to say, a book for iPad made with iBooks Author is like being in a museum where you’re supposed to touch everything. Using 3D in an EPUB is like trying to play ping pong on a 1970s Atari on a black and white TV. (Sorry Atari, but that’s pretty accurate. For clarification purposes, Atari was ahead of the time then. EPUB 3 isn’t.)
Working With Print Authors
We often are approached by print authors who are ready to make a digital book and our first question to them is how much video do you want to add to your book? We ask that knowing that our recommendation to them truly is going to be to make a book for iPad because the functionality, the file size, just the look is so much more alive and vivid than anything we have yet to see on a Kindle or Nook. We have a potential client we’re trying to help understand this concept as she wants to do a series of YouTube videos and put them on a website for free. It’s our recommendation that instead they be added to a book for iPad because it will help make the book even more spectacular than what we already are talking about.
Besides, why give something away for free when there’s going to be high production costs and, more importantly, you can include it in your book for iPad and make some money back from it?!?!
Are You Wanting To Convert From Print to Digital?
If you’re ready to convert your book there are a series of questions you should be asking yourself.
- What visuals can I add to my book to make it come alive? This means video and still, hi-res pics.
- Your book (for iPad) should include video. What videos could we shoot for your book to add a dimension that is presently missing?
- What interactive charts or graphs would you like to include in your book that your printer said would cost too much to print and they didn’t want to expend the extra pages to include? We can do that on one page now, at a high resolution and they can be very cool.
- What website pages would you like to have embedded in your book and let your readers visit without ever leaving your book?
- If you could add digital magic to your book, what would you like to add?
If you know the answers to some or all of those questions, then we’d like to talk to you about making a book for iPad, and of course, doing an EPUB version. Yes, more people will be able to get your book from Amazon and Barnes & Noble, but the one they get off Apple’s iBookstore will be the one that will make most people’s mouth’s drop and want to know what you can do next.
- Why Apple’s iBooks falls short of Kindle–for now (reviews.cnet.com)
- Barnes & Noble launches iPad app (reviews.cnet.com)
- The Average O’Reilly Customer Likes PDFs, Doens’t Use the iPad to Read Them (the-digital-reader.com)
- Are eBooks the way to go? (thetimeisneverwrite.wordpress.com)
- Apple iBooks e-reader: First Take (reviews.cnet.com)
- Nook Launches Nook Press, A New Self-Publishing Platform For eBooks [Updates] (makeuseof.com)
- Kindle vs. Nook vs. iPad: Which e-book reader should you buy? (epicagear.com)
- Boone Grove students will dump textbooks for iPads (posttrib.suntimes.com)
- Paul Carr: iBooks Author doesn’t hurt publishers. It might even help them (nextlevelofnews.com)
- eBook Conversion: Price Reduced! (sextonation.wordpress.com)
Our Latest Web Design–MathisonInteriors.com
We are proud this morning to announce the posting and completion of our latest web design, a revision of Mathison Interiors of Montgomery, Alabama’s website.
Our work with them began in early March and through careful assessment of what Lynn Mathison, Clay and Krisitian said they desired in a site for interior design, we worked with them to fashion a newly designed WordPress site. Over the past few weeks we’ve been working with them regularly to make final adjustments to the site’s content and to post a myriad of photos in horizontal and vertical formats so they may show their potential customers of the amazing products for sale within their store.
We’ve also launched a new business Facebook page for Mathison Interiors and encourage you to LIKE it.
Many thanks go out to Mathison Interiors for their professional approach to this project and for working so closely with us to make it a successful launch.
The site features a responsive theme designed by Bill Robbins at Organized Themes. Bill has been fantastic to work with and we highly recommend any of the templates for WordPress offered by Organized Themes.
Are you contemplating a website for your own business? Please call us today at 972-863-8784 to schedule a consultation.
- Aviation student Gina O’Kelley strives for Habitat Restoration at Mathison Park (b-townblog.com)
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Balance Ragged Lines InDesign Layout Stopping Full Margin Layout
We’re working on the layout of John Ed Mathison’s EPUB version of When God Redefines The Possible, now completed as a book for iPad and nearly ready for submission to Apple.
But our wonderful client also wants versions for Kindle & Nook and so we’re working on an EPUB version as well using InDesign.
But there was a problem in layout that happened from importing the text.
The manuscript we received from the client was in the form of a PDF. It had to be copied and then loaded into TextEditor on the Mac and from there, loaded into iBooks Author and then over into Adobe’s InDesign for EPUB formatting as you can’t go from an iBooks Author format to EPUB. It just doens’t work.
So when we imported the document from TextEditor into InDesign, it soon became apparent that there was something amiss.
And after some time in Lynda.com videos, I finally sent it to one of my InDesign gurus and asked what was up.
The answer came back quickly.
Turn Off Balance Ragged Lines
With Preview on, this became immediately apparent and quite honestly, this is something I never would have found without asking. There simply are thousands of options within InDesign and sometimes, if you don’t know what you’re looking for, you’d never find it.
So for future InDesign layout work. If you have paragraphs that are not going the width of the page from margin to margin, try turning off the Balance Ragged Lines option in Paragraph Styles.
Here are two photos of how this fixed the problem. Before and then after….
As you can see, the lines of the first two paragraphs now go all the way across without wrapping. Even with Show Hidden Characters On, there was no indication of what was causing this issue.
- New tools for making responsive HTML from InDesign (blogs.adobe.com)
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Watch Out For This Chinese Scam–picweb.net Domain Registration
This email came during the night. A look in Google reveals that a similar email was sent to someone else on Feb. 21, 2013, that reads almost identically.
Please take the time to ignore this and block the sender in your Mail rules. And for Heaven’s sake, don’t reply.
Anna Liu <email@example.com>
Urgent: “” Internet Brand and domain name registration
(Mail to the brand holder, thanks)
I’m sorry to disturb you so abruptly.
We are the department of registration service in China. On March 6,2013, we received an application formally. One company named “XiangLong Investment Co.,Ltd” had applied for the Internet Brand “claxtoncreative” and some relevant domain names through our body.
Now we are handling this registration, and we found that the keyword of these domain names and Internet Brand is identical with your company’s. So now we need to confirm a couple of things with you:
1. If your company consigns that company to register these domain names and Internet Brand, we will send an application form to them and help them finish the registration at once.
2. If your company has nothing to do with that company, they maybe have other purposes to register these domain names and Internet Brand.
We haven’t finished the registration of that company yet, and we have postponed the application of this company temporarily already. In order to deal with this issue better, please contact us by telephone or email as soon as possible.
In addition, we hereby affirm that our time limit for dissent application is 7 days. If your company files no dissent within the time limit, we will unconditionally approve the application submitted by that company.
Phone: +86-551 6512 0117
Fax: +86-551 6512 3308
Address:AnGao World Cities,No. 99,WangJiang West Road,HeFei,AnHui Province,China
ShangHai Headquarters: Postal Code:201315
Address:No.11,Lane 788,Xiupu Road,Nanhui District,ShangHai,China
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Can You Use Hype To Create A Parallax Animation For An iBook Widget?
For more than a year now I’ve been working on a sister project–TheWondersExpedition.com and trying to help share some fascinating discoveries I’ve noticed in the study of amazing places around the world.
And to begin telling that story in digital book form, and also online, I’ve been in the process of building various forms of art in Photoshop and Illustrator and trying to decide whether files should be straight vector files–(I’d love to be able to do .SVG but iPad won’t support it) or go for Photoshop creations rendered out as .PNGs.
Clearly I want to be able to tell the story of multiple sites around the globe and use the continuous scrolling effect to help share the findings. Ultimately, this will require creating some sort of parallax-looking animation that makes it look like the world is turning, day is going from day to night, and cool places are popping up into view as the world turns, along with some sort of geometric lines, trig formulas of sine and cosines, and probably a kitchen sink, too. while I’m at it.
That led me to really look at two creative tool options tonight. After Effects or Tumult’s Hype, now available as version 1.6.0.
Can You Use Hype To Create A Parallax Animation For An iBook Widget?
The answer to me right now is–I don’t know.
What I did tonight was create a Hype file with the dimensions of 2048 px by 1536, the size of an iPad 3 screen/retina screen. Just trying to see the whole screen on a 17-inch MacBook Pro, early 2012, requires me to shrink the View down to 50 percent and to shove my timeline as far to the bottom of the screen as I can stand. (That’s not a complaint, it’s just the way it is.)
Just for starters tonight, I went ahead and in Photoshop created a round ball designed to rotate from the center point at the bottom of the animation. I didn’t do the math, but through a process of lines from each respective corner, then a line down the middle and then a line from the bottom center line to the top left and right corners got me a measurement of about 1555 px. I set the ellipse tool to form a perfect circle by holding down the shift key when I created a round “globe” in a file that was 3710 px by 3710 px. This way, as the globe rotates in Hype from the center spot at the bottom, there will never be a point where the viewer won’t see either blue for the atmosphere during the day, and black for simulated night time. Mind you, I’m not worrying about anything fancy line stars and the moon right now. I just want to get the global atmosphere spinning. (Later will come additional layers of stuff.)
With a two-layered .PNG the file for just the atmosphere right now is 39 MBs. HUGE!
And needless to say, when I put it in the timeline of Hype and then set it to turn 180 degrees in 20 seconds, it really made the MBP, with 8 GBs of RAM, start to creep. At one point, I could see block pixels where there are none, as the earth’s atmosphere turned from day to night. Not good.
So at 11:30 p.m. on a Monday night, I’m calling it a day to rethink this as I sleep. I’m beginning to wonder if Adobe’s After Effects isn’t going to be the better place to do this, but then it is destined to become a .mov and not an interactive HTML5 widget. So I ponder.
Anyone else done this? Anyone? Bueller?
- iBooks Author – Take 1
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