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Archives: March 2012

DOJ May Be Close To Settlement With Apple Over eBook Pricing

The Justice Department is reportedly getting close to a settlement with Apple and the “big six” publishers. Last month, the government agency brought charges against the iPad maker, Simon & Schuster, Hachette, Pearson, Penguin, Macmillan and HarperCollins Publishers, alleging collusion in eBook pricing.

Reuters has more details about the case: “While negotiations are still fluid, the settlement is expected to eliminate Apple’s so-called ‘most favored nation’ status, which had prevented the publishers from selling lower-priced e-books through rival retailers such as Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O) or Barnes & Noble Inc (BKS.N), the people said. The deal could also force a shift, at least temporarily, in pricing control from publishers to retailers, one of the people said.”

Mediabistro Course

Freelancing 101 Online Boot Camp

Freelancing 101Starting April 28, this online event will show you the best way to start your freelancing career, from the first steps of self-advertising and marketing, to building your schedule and managing clients. By the end of this online boot camp you will have a plan for making a profitable career as a freelancer, and the skill set to devote yourself to it. Register now! 

Paper by FiftyThree: iPad App Toolbox for Writers

The top free iPad app in the Apple App Store is Paper by FiftyThree–an elegant tool for taking notes, sketching or brainstorming ideas on your tablet.

Check it out: “Paper is where ideas begin. It’s the easiest and most beautiful way to create on iPad. Capture your ideas as sketches, diagrams, illustrations, notes or drawings and share them across the web … Paper was designed from the ground up for touch and creating on the go. No fussy buttons, settings or other distractions. Paper works the way you think, like a familiar notebook or journal … Productivity meets beauty. No settings. Always beautiful—like great tools should be. Just pick up a tool and instantly begin to Sketch, Write, Draw, Outline and Color.”

Below, we’ve collected five other free tools for iPad users; they are all popular tools among iPad users.

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Kindle Fire App Gets Location Services (Sans GPS)

TweetCaster, one of the better third party Twitter apps, is now available in the Amazon Appstore, and it brought a useful little feature with it.

Most social networks have made a big deal about letting you share your location along with your activities, but that is a little difficult to do when you’re mobile. Without a GPS unit, it’s  little difficult to do, which is where Skyhook comes in. This Boston based startup has a proprietary tech that allows apps to discern their location based on nearby Wifi networks, and that’s how TweetCaster can dd your location to your tweets.

“Since the current version of the Kindle Fire does not provide location services, we couldn’t provide our users with key location-based functionality,” said Evan Conway, president of OneLouder, makers of TweetCaster. “By adding the Skyhook SDK, our Kindle Fire version of TweetCaster now performs to the same standard as our other versions.”

Skyhook is also providing similar location services for other Kindle Fire apps, including MapQuest, HopStop and deCarta.

Amazon Appstore

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How To Search Google By Reading Level

If you are researching books for younger audiences or just helping a young person try to navigate the Internet, Google has a feature that will let you set the specific reading level on search results.

For instance, a middle school science teacher looking up earthquakes might want different search results than a geologist that wants up-to-date research on a subject. To search Google by reading level, Google has published the following steps:

  1. Click the gear icon gear icon in the top right corner of the search results page.
  2. Click Advanced Search.
  3. Next to “Reading level” within the “Need more tools” section, select your desired reading level (basic, intermediate, or advanced) or choose to show all results annotated with reading levels.

UPDATE: Follow this link for another way to set your Google reading preferences.

AAP & Goodreads Are Running Book Blog Competition

Hey book bloggers, want to get some recognition for your work? The Association of American Publishers and Goodreads have opened the nominations for the Independent Book Blogger Awards. Four winners will get airfare to New York and a three day pass to BookExpo America in June.

The contest is open to bloggers ages 18 and up in the U.S. who dedicate at least 75 percent of their blog content to covering books.  The blog cannot be affiliated with commercial media ties.

The press release explains more about what they are looking for: “There are four categories for submissions:  Adult Fiction, Adult Non-Fiction, Children’s/Young adult and Industry News.  Entries will be judged on such qualities as writing, analysis, design and presentation and reader impact.  Complete details on how to enter, rules and background on the judging process is at Contest terms

You can submit entries through Monday, April 9, 11:59PM. After all of the entries have been received, readers will be able to vote for their favorites from April 10-23. A panel of publishing experts will judge the finalists, and the winners will be announced the week of May 7.

Pottermore Videos Help Readers Access eBooks On Varied Devices

Pottermore Shop, the online destination for all things Harry Potter, has put together a series of instructional videos to help readers buy eBooks and load them onto different devices.

The ‘transfer-to-device’ videos are available on Pottermore Shop’s YouTube page, which has been updated throughout the week. It includes videos on how to load Harry Potter eBooks on the Kindle, Nook, Sony eReaders, Apple devices and via Google Play.

We’ve embedded the latest video above to give you an example.

Zinio Updates App For New iPad

Digital magazine publisher Zinio has updated its iOS app to support the retina screen and the faster processing speed on the new iPad.

Version 2.2.2 includes improved page rendering, faster download times and higher resolution magazines designed to look brighter and more colorful. It requires iOS 4.3 or later.

Zinio, which sells digital versions of popular print magazines such as Elle, Esquire and Rolling Stone, also has apps available for Android devices, iPhones and desktop computers.

Draw Something Free Is the Top App of the Week

Draw Something Free is the top free app for the week, according to research from AppData, Inside Network’s data service that tracks app and developer leaderboards.

Below, we’ve listed the top ten grossing iPad apps of the week. The list includes links to App Data’s research about the individual apps, including historical charts, developer information and download information.

To prepare for Mediabistro’s upcoming Publishing App Summit on December 4, 2012, we spotlight the top free apps every week–helping our readers discover, enjoy and analyze successful content.

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Kobo iPad App Updated for the New iPad

The Kindle and iBooks apps aren’t the only reading apps to take advantage if the Retina Display on the new iPad. Kobo released an updated version of their iPad app this week.

The update improves the typography and styling of the text, and it also enables sharper images. New features include more sharing options, including public notes and the ability to respond to the notes left by other readers. We will also be getting a new homepage in the app as well as performance improvements and bug fixes.

iTunes

 

Free eBook: ‘Dare to Die’ by Carolyn Hart

This mystery novel by the well known Carolyn Hart is our free eBook today.

Intrepid duo Annie and Max Darling return for their nineteenth adventure in the Death on Demand series. Annie owns a mystery bookstore in Broward’s Rock, one of the idyllic South Carolina Sea Islands. This time Annie leaves her bookstore in the meddling hands of her mother-in-law and steps in to help her friends Ingrid and Duane Webb by taking care of their motel. One of the motel’s new residents is a lonely and troubled young woman named Iris, who had disappeared from Broward’s Rock more than 10 years earlier, following the tragic deaths of two of her high-school friends. Annie invites Iris to a party that happens to include some other old friends. By the time the evening is over, Iris is brutally murdered, and the best suspects are some of those very same old classmates. The Darlings vow not to get involved, but soon their own lives are in danger, and the body count escalates. As usual, the intricate interrelationships among the characters hold the solution to the mystery. Another strong entry in this popular series.

Amazon

Kobo

B&N

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