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Archives: May 2011

Rolling Stone Co-founder Disses iPad

In an interview with Ad Age, Rolling Stone co-founder Jann Wenner said that magazine publishers who push for iPad versions of their publications are “crazy.”

While he does admit that the iPad is a good reading device, he doesn’t think it can be monetized as well as print. He told AdAge: “From the publisher’s point of view I would think they’re crazy to encourage it. They’re going to get less money for it from advertisers. Right now it costs a fortune to convert your magazine, to program it, to get all the things you have to do on there. And they’re not selling. You know, 5,000 copies there, 3,000 copies here, it’s not worth it. You haven’t put a dent in your R&D costs.”

Fishbowl NY points out that Wenner is biased towards print. Here is more from the blog: “Of course we all realize that this is Wenner, a guy who loves print almost to a fault, so everything he said needs to be taken with a grain – actually, make that a cup full – of salt. But beneath the iPad bashing he does have a good point: Publishers who are letting Apple dictate the terms will probably end up regretting it.”

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Lonely Planet Is Giving Away An eBook In The iBookstore

Lonely Planet is bringing its Best in Travel series of books to the iBookstore. To celebrate the launch, the publisher is giving away one of the eBooks for free in the iBookstore for a limited time. Titles include: Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel, The Travel Book and Lonely Planet’s Guide to Travel Photography.

Lonely Planet’s Trade and Reference Publisher Piers Pickard stated: “We are thrilled to have these fantastic titles available as ebooks for the first time…They look fantastic particularly when viewed on an iPad and we’re sure travelers will love having Best in Travel and other titles available in a digital format.”

Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel is free through June 14th, and will be $4.99 after the promotion. The Travel Book is priced at $17.99, Travel Photography is priced at $14.99

Appel releases iWorks for iPhone, iTouch

Apple has just released new versions of its iWorks office suite that have been tailored for the iPad and the iPhone. The 3 apps (Keynote, Pages, and Numbers) provide a fair amount of functionality and retail for $10 each.

Withe the new apps you can print docs (using AirPrint), import and export to and from MS Office, and create original work on iOS. Pages in particular should interest the eBook user; it can export Epub files.

Update: An early adopter can’t find the Epub export option, so it’s probably not included (even though Pages on OSX got this ability in August 2010).

Of course, the larger story here is what this release might say about Apple’s future plans. Releasing iWorks for iOS makes it a step closer to being used  independent of a computer. iTunes is still required, though, so it’s only a small step.

Author Scott Carney Talks eBooks

Journalist Scott Carney’s freshman book The Red Market, which is out on Harper Collins today, looks at the international network of organ brokers, bone thieves and child traffickers.

I caught up with the author for a feature interview on Media Bistro’s Avant Guild site. He spoke about reporting on the black market. In the interview called, Hey, How’d You Report on The Black Market and Live To Tell About It, Scott Carney?. “The trick is going into the interview empathizing with your subject and trying to see the world from their view,” he says in the interview. Avant Guild members can access the entire interview here.

Since his book is available as an eBook, I interviewed Carney about his thoughts on digital publishing for eBookNewser. Here is the interview.

EBN: What do you think of eBooks?

SC: Epublishing just might be the future–but maybe not. It is a very promising route forward that could change the way that we interact with media overall. There is one company that I think is particularly cutting edge called The Atavist, which was started by another Wired contributing editor named Evan Ratliff and a current New Yorker editor named Nick Thompson (who is now, officially a consultant on the project). They do feature stories, where a reader can download them like an iTunes song for like $1.99 for a really well researched story. Read more

Should Authors Charge For eBook Signatures?

Can authors make money for signing books? Possibly with a new eBook signing technology called InScribed Media from a company called Ironcutter Media. The platform will enable book retailers and publishers to add a digital signature at the point of check out.

Authors can sign the eBook using a small pen tablet, like a Wacom Bamboo pen tablet. They can either presign a digital file, which can be added to an eBook automatically at checkout, or the buyer can send a request to the book store or publisher for a personalized message, which the author can in turn respond to via email. The technology allows for publishers and bookstores to offer this autograph as a free service or they can charge for the digital John Hancock.

To me, the idea of buying a digital autograph seems a little impersonal and kind of defeats the warmness that going to a reading and getting a book signed adds to the reading experience. But then again, maybe it’s a good way for authors to make a little extra money.

What do you think?

Apple to Unveil iCloud, OSX Lion Next Week

Apple put out a short press release today and it has the tech blogs buzzing. Apple will be holding its Worldwide Developer’s Conference next week and it wants to make sure you’re paying attention.

Steve Jobs will be on hand to unveil iOS5, the next version of Apple’s mobile OS. The next major release of OSx will also be show off, and it looks like Apple will reveal its new cloud storage service, iCloud.

There are no details in the press release, just the names. But that’s enough for me to mark my calendar. Is Accepting Submissions, an online creative writing community, is now accepting submissions for short stories, poems, and other works. Writers can share their content to a community groups to collaborate on writing.

The Protagonize blog explains how to submit something to a group: “Use the Actions (formerly Options) menu on any story/poem or whatnot. You’ll see a new option entitled Add to or remove from group. Should be pretty self-explanatory. Groups that don’t allow submissions won’t be listed in the popup dialog.”

This is the last major feature to be launched before the site’s redesign goes live this summer.

San Francisco Chronicle Releases iPad App

Hearst Newspapers released an iPad app today for The San Francisco Chronicle.

Like other news apps, the SF Chronicle app features news, blogs, photos and columns from the newspaper, as well as 360 degree photos of landmark San Francisco buildings, all designed with the tablet in mind.

According to its listing in iTunes, the app is a “live edition” of the paper. This includes breaking news and updated traffic and weather reports.

Subscriptions cost $5.99 a month, or $59.99 a year. And you can test drive the app for free for a month.

Via Mac Observer.


Entourage Will Shut Down its Forums Today – Please Help Rescue the Content

Entourage has taken the next step in winding down the company. The forum admin Zem announced today that the Edge support forums will be shut down in the next few hours, which means all the existing helpful content will be deleted.

Dear eDGe Community,

We greatly appreciate your support over the previous year but we unfortunately we must come to an end today. In the coming hours we will be shutting down the forum site. We suggest you consolidate the community back to one of the original locations where you started such as MobileRead or Google. You have been a fabulous group to work with. Special thanks go to Boris (who we re-iterate has never been an employee) who has definitely become a great friend to all eDGe users.

Update: Entourage and Mobile Read are trying to work out the technical details. Keep your fingers crossed.

It’s not too late to save that forum. Alex Turcic, owner of MobileRead Forums, the online eBook and eReader community, has already agreed to accept a copy of the Edge forums and  support it. All the helpful info will still be available and Edge owners can still support  each other.

If you know someone at Entourage, please contact him or her and ask them to go along with this.

via Entourage

Zinio Android App Now Out – Comes with 24 Free Issues

Zinio has just released its long delayed Android app. (How long has it been delayed, you ask? I recall reading about the app this time last year, and it had a ship date of summer 2010.)

This app provides access to more than 20,000 magazines that are available through Zinio, but it’s only been approved for certain devices. If you were hoping to run it on your generic Android tablet, you’re out of luck. The minimum OS requirement is Android v2.2, and it appears to have features tailored for Honeycomb.

If you download the app before June 15th, Zinio will give you 1 free issue from each of 24 different magazines, including: AFAR, BlackBook, Cosmopolitan, ELLE DECOR, ELLE, ESPN The Magazine, Esquire, Food Network Magazine, Harpers Bazaar , Harvard Business Review, Home Theater, Juxtapoz, Marie Claire, Men’s Fitness, Men’s Journal, Motor Trend, O, The Oprah Magazine, Outdoor Photographer, Outside, Popular Mechanics, Road & Track, Robb Report, Rolling Stone, Seventeen and Us Weekly.

You can find it on the Android Market.