A new digital publishing software company called Sideways launched at Book Expo this week. They made the BEA iPhone app and they had a booth in the Digital Book Zone. The company’s software is aimed at helping publishers turn books into digital experiences across platforms.
We caught up with Charles Stack, the CEO of Sideways, at the show and he showed off some cool interactive books that he had developed for the iPad. One was a multimedia Jim Morrison story, that looked a little bit more like an interactive web site than a book, but the experience was nicely built. It included a feature article, very high resolution photos and a timeline of Morrison’s musical history.
Sideways creates rich media experiences on the iPad and hopes to bring a three-dimensional approach to cook books, graphic novels and children’s lit.
“People who like print say they like print because of its tactile nature, but eReader devices have their own tactile appeal,” he told eBookNewser, highlighting the interactive textures that could be built into a digital book including the ability to 3D content, games and audio recordings. “You can’t do that in a print book,” he said. “This could work great in a kid’s book.” This is a very a 21st century version of “When you hear the chime, turn the page.”
Stack thinks the iPad has the potential to increase publisher revenues, because of the interactivity built in. For example, he said that publishers could sell cooking tools or recipes within a digital cook book.