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Archives: May 2011

Would You Pay $1,000 For An iPad App?

Apps in iTunes range in price from free to $999.99. No, that is not a typo, there are about four apps these days that are priced at almost $1,000.

BarMax CA and BarMax NY are study courses to help law students prepare for the bar exam in California and New York. What do you get for the steep price? According to the app’s listing, you get a two-month course in a 1 gigabyte app. It comes with thousands of test pages and hours of audio lectures. But still, these are arguably the most expensive digital textbooks around.

But these law apps aren’t the only apps charging a fortune. PC Magazine has more: “According to a list published last month by The Most Expensive Journal, the BarMax CA and BarMax NY app shares the title for ‘most expensive app’ with two others: the $999.99 Intuition Control Solo WolfVision (which sounds more like a Charlie Sheen product than mobile app) and the $999.99 ‘The Alchemist SMS’ app.”

Would you pay $1,000 for an app?

Seven Easy Steps to Keep Your Book Off the Kindle

Would you like to avoid making money on your ebook? If you do, then Garth Risk Hallberg, an author and extreme book designer, has a list of 7 ways to design a book so it will not work on the Kindle. (iPad is still a possibility, though.)

The list starts with a couple basics like using font colors and lots of high quality illustrations, but it then goes on to discuss all the various things you can’t show on an E-ink screen. Garth also provides a list of 10 books that are themselves Kindle proof, and he explains why.

If you’ve ever been curious about the cutting edge of book design then this list is definitely worth reading.

The Millions

VIDEO: Blio eReading Demonstrated At BEA

The above is a video demonstration of the Blio eReading software at Book Expo.

Pocketbook 360+ Now on Sale – $113

Pocketbook’s latest eReader, the 360+ is on sale right now. This 5″ eReader debuted just under a month ago, and it has an E-ink screen with a resolution of 800×600, Wifi, 2GB Flash storage, and 2 microSD card slots.

It lacks a touch screen or a headphone jack, but it does come with an RSS feed reader and a web browser. This is the second generation  device, which means that it can draw on a body of apps developed for the previous model.

The regular price on this model is $149, and yes that is more than the new Nook Touch. But now that the price is $113 it might be worth getting. The 360 is a solid piece of hardware.

via Pocketbook

GoodReads Adds a Barcode Scanner to its Android App

Goodreads released a new version of its Android app yesterday, and this version adds one little feature that some users have wanted for a while now.

If you have a camera on your Android gadget, you can now use the GoodReads app to scan the barcode. You can then search one of the online databases for the books metatdata, and add the info to your online bookshelf. This doesn’t add the contents of the book, just the title and other metadata. This new feature should help make it easier to track what books you own so you can share your opinion on them.

There’s a picture after the break showing the barcode scanning feature in operation.

Read more

LinkedIn Groups, eBook Mistakes & Proofreading Tests: Top eBook Stories of the Week

For your weekend reading pleasure, here are the most popular headlines of the week–ranging from proofreading contests to free book sites to eBook formatting sites.

Click here to sign up for eBookNewser’s daily email newsletter, getting all our publishing stories, book deal news, videos, podcasts, interviews, and writing advice in one place.

1. How to Convert EPub Books for use on Kindle
2. LinkedIn Groups for eBook Authors, Publishers & Readers
3. Five eBook Mistakes
4. So You Think You Can Proofread?
5.How To Download eBooks From Your Local Library
6. eBook Formatting Tools
7. 10 Websites To Download Free eBooks
8. Amazon Now Sells More eBooks Than Paper Books
9. Cheap isn’t Always the Best Price
10. Is Africa Ready For eBooks?

Calibre 0.8.3 Adds Support for new Nook Touch

Kovid Goyal has just posted the weekly update for calibre, the open source ebook management tool, and he’s worked his usual magic.

Today’s update adds support for several more eBookstores, a number of minor feature tweaks, several bug fixes, and one important feature. Calibre now supports the Nook Touch. It was announced on Tuesday and he adds support by Friday. Yes, Kovid does work that fast.

Calibre is the leading eBook and eReader management tool, and that’s not the usual marketing nonsense. It supports conversion from and to a wide variety of eBook formats. It will also assist you in organizing your eBook library and transferring your eBooks to your eReader (almost all are supported).

iPad Apps Getting Better Usability, But Still Need Work

According to a new report about app usability from the Nielsen Norman Group, in the last year, iPad apps have, become “less wacky.” The report found that app designers have taken Nielsen Norman’s recommendations from last year and have adopted back buttons, a broader use of search, homepages and better access to articles with the ability to click on a headline.

But apps still need a little work. The report states: “This year’s testing still found many cases in which users accidentally touched something and couldn’t find their way back to their start point, as well as magazine apps that required multiple steps to access the table of contents.”

Another major issue is navigating content that is too small to tap.

Via The Huffington Post.

Alaska Airline is Going Lean and Green With iPads

Alaska Airline has just begun a program to issue iPads to all pilots. The iPads are going to replace the 50 or more pounds of paper that pilots used to carry on a flight.

This effort, which should be finished by mid-June,  is part of an ongoing project to enhance flight safety, improve efficiency and protect the environment. It follows a successful beta test by 100 pilots this past winter and spring.

All the manuals will be replaced as PDFs, and AA plans to use GoodReader to display them on the iPad.


‘Steep Trails’ By John Muir Is Free eBook Of The Day

Today’s Free eBook of the Day is Steep Trails by naturalist John Muir.

This is a great summer read to get you inspired to go out hiking. Here is an excerpt: “Nature is a good mother, and sees well to the clothing of her many bairns–birds with smoothly imbricated feathers, beetles with shining jackets, and bears with shaggy furs. In the tropical south, where the sun warms like a fire, they are allowed to go thinly clad; but in the snowy northland she takes care to clothe warmly.”

Project Gutenberg has the free download.

For more free eBooks, check out our Free eBook of the Day archive.