An Excel-ent episode with a literary bent whilst we wait on some downloads
If it wasn't for our new books (have we mentioned them?), this would be a strangely all-Microsoft episode of The MacNN Podcast, but luckily the Redmond giant turns out software for both Macs and Windows (who knew?), so we've set up this episode to be fun to listen to while you wait for your approval notice from Microsoft that you may obtain your copy of WindOwS X -- sorry, Windows 10. We also talk cool software, including (yes) Microsoft Excel.
Replace that typewriter and make yourself an e-book
When you've done something once, you can fly through it the second time. Unless that second time is ages later, in which case you spend all your waking hours re-learning something you'd already sweated through. So entirely for you and not at all, not in the teeniest way for us the next time we write a book, here's what you need. It's what we recommend after a summer of working on this, followed up by one or two cases where your mileage may vary and anyway the alternatives are fun. Plus a few quick notes of lessons we learned, mistakes, and evidence -- actual evidence -- that all this works.
Digital collecting with scrapbooks you can share
Crafting is a thing. It's a big thing, but it's practically by definition a big thing in paper rather than digital: you create books using your photos and your drawings and your artwork. There are entire crafting exhibitions and conferences where rows upon rows of firms sell a thousand different types of paper and tools from stencils to pens. Scrapbook Crafter 1.0.2 wants to recreate the appeal of crafting without the fire hazard.
The real business of writing and publishing books on Macs
Self-publishing -- once known as the "vanity press" -- has been around for decades. If you had a burning desire to be a published author, but mysteriously the conventional literary "mafia" couldn't see the value in your heartbreaking work of staggering genius, you could pay to have books created for you in the hopes that this would lead to your "discovery." It rarely worked out that way (until 50 Shades of Gray took that path). With the advent of desktop publishing in the late 1980s and the emergence of e-books into the mainstream more recently, authors can now take much more control over their literary fate. In this new Summer Project, MacNN is going to show you what we mean, by putting out a book ourselves over the next eight weeks. Read on to find out more.
Newsreader for Apple Watch lacks basics
Seriously, app developers are clearly trying to get us to read more on our Apple Watches and -- you know what? It will work. Not with Wear Reader, the app that shows you books one word at a time, and actually not with this news app RSS Wear 1.0, but something will get us. It might even be some future version of RSS Wear, possibly.
Apple's e-reader is under-appreciated
Anyone who bought the Kindle device that lets you read in direct sunlight made a sensible choice, and they got terrific battery life too. I made my iPad choice, and I lived with it, despite not being able to read on the sun-soaked beach. Of course, you can read Kindle books on iPad, but now I actively seek out titles on Apple's iBook Store before I bother looking for them on Kindle.
Follow a funny retelling of Shakespeare's masterpiece of tragically awkward family conflict or go co
Ryan North's To Be Or Not To Be by Tin Man Games is a quirky presentation of William Shakespeare's Hamlet ... or at least that story as presented by Ryan North, and illustrated by a veritable who's who of web comics. The app is one of Tin Man Games' Gamebook Adventures, a platform for stories told in a choose your own adventure style, or "find your own fate" if you had the Indiana Jones versions of those kinds of books. Choices that more-or-less match up with Shakespeare's version of how things shook out are marked with an adorable little Yorrik skull.
Amazon seeks right to print out-of-stock books in negotiations with publishers
Amazon is allegedly battling publishers in the United Kingdom for more favorable contract terms, including the right to print out-of-stock books. The retailer wants to be able to print more copies of works if publishers are unable to provide sufficient stock, with the proposal one of a number said to be under negotiation between Amazon and independent publishers.
Hachette confirms delays by Amazon, not by Hachette ordering system
Book publisher Hachette is claiming that Amazon is throttling availability of its books for sale on the e-retailer's site. The claims by Hachette belie arguments made by Amazon in Judge Denise Cote's court during the Apple e-book anti-trust conspiracy trial , in which Amazon executives testified that Amazon never uses its market position as the dominant bookseller in the US to negotiate better terms -- despite ample evidence to the contrary.
Top Apple executives cast doubt on book
Apple's senior VP for Internet Software and Services, Eddy Cue, is denying an incident mentioned in the recent Yukari Iwatani Kane book Haunted Empire: Apple After Steve Jobs. The book claims that at one point, Jobs threw a pen at Cue's face. Asked if the anecdote is true, Cue told a reporter "No it's not."
Book claims declining Apple culture
Yukari Iwatani Kane's book Haunted Empire: Apple After Steve Jobs is "nonsense," claims Apple CEO Tim Cook. "This nonsense belongs with some of the other books I've read about Apple," he says in a statement to CNBC. "It fails to capture Apple, Steve, or anyone else in the company. Apple has over 85,000 employees that come to work each day to do their best work, to create the world's best products, to put their mark in the universe and leave it better than they found it. This has been the heart of Apple from day one and will remain at the heart for decades to come. I am very confident about our future."
Over 10,000 ebooks available through program at launch in October
Amazon has announced a new program that will provide Kindle owners digital copies of books they already own. Kindle MatchBook will allow Amazon customers to get an ebook version of physical versions bought through the retailer in the past, with titles either being offered at no charge or for between $0.99 and $2.99 each.
Will include new cover, afterword
A paperback version of Walter Isaacson's Steve Jobs is going on sale September 10th, according to publisher Simon & Schuster. The new edition will differ little from previous digital and hardcover releases, mainly gaining a new afterword and a new cover. The latter is a photo by Norman Seeff shot in 1984, but with Jobs in the exact same pose as the previous cover, which used an Albert Watson portrait from 2006.
Subscription service aims to become 'Spotify of Books'
The founder of the Waterstones book chain in the United Kingdom is setting up a subscription service for digital books. Read Petite will allow customers to read short stories and serializations, with an unlimited number of novellas readable for a monthly fee, effectively becoming the equivalent of Spotify but for ebooks and magazines.
New tools offer more author flexibility, better tracking of sales
Barnes and Noble e-publishing subsidiary Nook Media today announced the launch of Nook Press, a new self-publishing platform offering authors a fast and free way to write, edit, collaborate, and offer eBooks to avid readers. The new platform replaces the previous PubIt! platform after two and a half years of service.
Reading feature accompanied by pinch-zoom, bug fixes
Google has updated its ebook app for Android with a feature that reads books aloud for the user. Updated yesterday, Google Play Books (Google Play) also adds the ability to pinch or double-tap to zoom, text-editing features for notes, as well as recommending other titles within the Play bookstore, using the already-owned book collection and popular titles to offer potential titles to purchase.
Book publisher seeks trial based on ip evidence
Book publisher John Wiley and Sons has named people accused of sharing books online and is calling for a trial with jury. If the trial goes ahead, this will be the first time a case based on evidence from BitTorrent will be tested in court.
Writer talks DRI, Top 100 retreats
A upcoming book by Fortune editor-at-large Adam Lashinsky -- Inside Apple -- is promising to lay out Apple's "secret systems, tactics and leadership strategies," according to press material. Due on January 25th, the title is said to be "based on numerous interviews" and hold "exclusive new information" about a collection of topics. Among these are Apple's approach to innovation, its supply chain deals, and the transition into a world without Steve Jobs.
Sales great 'in both formats,' company says
Online retailer Amazon has today confirmed that Walter Isaacson's Steve Jobs biography led in combined Kindle and print book sales at its storefront during 2011. "We chose ‘Steve Jobs’ as one of the Top 10 best books of the year, and even though it was published in October, the sales have been phenomenal in both formats," comments Amazon's senior editor for books, Chris Schluep. The title was earlier announced as Amazon's bestselling book of 2011, but that ranking appears to have excluded Kindle editions.
Title available for less than two months
Walter Isaacson's Steve Jobs biography has topped Amazon's bestselling book list for 2011, a new chart shows. Amazon has not said how many copies of the title it has sold so far, but the achievement is significant just based on the length of time the book has been available. It only went on sale October 23rd, moving 379,000 copies in its first week.
Friendly exchanges balanced by insults
A new book, Letters to Steve by Mark Milian, chronicles and explores some of the email exchanges between former Apple CEO Steve Jobs and the public, CNN notes. Jobs was unusual among major tech executives in having a well-known email address from which the public could actually get a response. In an official book description, the CEO is described as having "handled customer-service inquiries himself and carefully revealed hints about upcoming Apple products, guaranteeing headlines on blogs." In other highlighted exchanges, though, Jobs allegedly "lobs insults, bends the truth and uses misdirection in order to manipulate anyone on the receiving end."
Digital version could trump paper sales
The newly-released Steve Jobs biography by Walter Isaacson is on track to becoming an Amazon bestseller, a company spokeswoman tells Reuters. "The way things are trending, it could very likely be our top-selling book of the year," says Brittany Turner. No sales numbers have been mentioned so far.
Publication date moved up to October 24th
Walter Isaacson -- the author of an upcoming authorized Steve Jobs biography -- knew Jobs was on the verge of death several weeks ago, according to a source for the Wall Street Journal. Isaacson is said to have last interviewed Jobs about four weeks ago, both immediately before and after he resigned from his role as Apple CEO. It was at that point that Jobs acknowledged he was dying, which may suggest that he was resistant to letting go of the company he helped found. The confession is expected to be at the end of the biography, which is simply named Steve Jobs.
Groups have until July to reach new deal
Manhattan federal court Judge Denny Chin once again approved a time extension for Google to work out a settlement in its dispute with groups representing authors and publishers. Both sides now have nine additional months to reach an agreement in the ongoing conflict, which has continued to develop over six years without a resolution.
Resignation add-on may be to blame
The size of Walter Isaacson's authorized Steve Jobs biography has grown by more than 200 pages, a check of Simon & Schuster's website shows. The book is now listed at 656 pages by its publisher, versus the 448 announced earlier. The latter figure is still displayed on the iBookstore.
Will feature Jobs' perspective on event
The upcoming authorized Steve Jobs biography by Walter Isaacson will include a section about the CEO's resignation, says publisher Simon & Schuster. Jobs resigned just yesterday, and the book is scheduled to hit shelves November 21st; the timing leaves Isaacson and Simon & Schuster a relatively small window in which to research, write and revise extra content before printing. A spokeswoman for the publisher, Tracey Guest, says however that Isaacson "speaks to Jobs regularly and is still working on the final chapter of the book."
Original 2012 date simply matter of convenience
The sudden change in the date of Walter Isaacson's Steve Jobs biography isn't connected to the CEO's health, an interview with Isaacson reveals. The book was originally scheduled to ship in March 2012, but on Monday received a new date, November 21st 2011. "It's actually not related to any decline," says Isaacson.
Will beat previously announced 2012 date
An anticipated Steve Jobs biography will hit shelves on November 21st of this year, according to a new Barnes & Noble listing. Via that retailer the book will cost $15 for download to a Nook or the Nook app, or $32.50 in hardcover form. A preorder of the hardcover is much cheaper, only $20.40.
Fits with official Apple timelines
Several book listings at Amazon.co.uk may suggest that Mac OS X Lion will ship in late July or early August. Mac OS X Lion For Dummies and Mac OS X Lion All-in-One For Dummies are both allegedly shipping on July 28th, despite the fact that Apple has not set a firm release date for its software. Mac OS X Lion Bible and Teach Yourself Visually Mac OS X Lion are due on July 29th, while Mac OS X Lion Portable Genius is targeted at August 5th, and Mac OS X Lion Simplified is set to arrive August 26th.
Authors tackle Snow Leopard quirks
MacNN has produced two new reviews, the first covering Readdle's Scanner Pro for iPhone. The app uses an iPhone's camera as a document capture tool, transforming photos into PDFs which can then be uploaded to several destinations or copied back to a Mac or PC. After capturing an image, users can rely on default processing, switch to grayscale, or make tweaks to contrast and brightness.
iPublishWidget with Bowker
Bowker and Impelsys have announced a joint marketing program for Bowker's SEO Title Cards and Impelsys' iPublishWidget. The integration aims to simplify the process of marketing and selling books through Broker's Print catalog. Affiliate sales-channeling elements can be controlled using iPublishWidget within SEO Title Cards. Widgets can also include links to a user's online catalog through Boker's MyIdentifiers.com title-management platform.
AppleScript 1-2-3 guide
Peachpit Press has published AppleScript 1-2-3, a new guidebook for users and developers. The book is said to take readers step-by-step through the coding of AppleScripts, which can be used to automate many of the tasks a person normally performs on a Mac. 1-2-3 is particularly aimed at beginners, as it requires no previous programming experience, but is still said to offer information useful for experts.
Axiotron ships Modbook
Axiotron has begun shipping its Modbook tablet Mac, a modified MacBook with a built-in Wacom digitized pen-sensitive liquid crystal display. The only Mac-based tablet on the market won the Best of Show award at Macworld Expo 2007 after debuting at the event. The Modbook features a 2.0GHz or 2.2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, Inkwell handwriting recognition software, a 24x DVD combo or 8x DVD SuperDrive, GPS support, and Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard. Modbooks start at $2,300 and include a 1-year warranty.
Third-party Kindle support
Amazon's hyped Kindle book reader now has third-party support, an electronic book publisher has announced. Fictionwise says that over 15,000 titles are available for the Kindle from its MultiFormat category, including works by the likes of Mark Twain, Franz Kafka and Poppy Z. Brite. Shoppers cannot however download directly to their readers, as they can with official Amazon books: they must either download to their computer first and sync via USB, or else have Fictionwise e-mail books to their Kindle with a 10-cent Amazon surcharge.
Eschalon ship date
In brief: A new book delving into Mac OS X keybaord shortcuts has been released, a new volume of SL MultiTracks CID WAV Drum Loops debuts, a release date for the game Eschalon: Book I has been released, PulpMotion is coming to North American stores, LightScribe holiday templates have been released ... A new book, Core Mac OS X Keyboard Shortcuts, by Dean Pirera, is coming out this January (2008) written exclusively for Mac users wanting to learn all the tips and tricks for navigating with a keyboard. The book is printed in a handy A5 spiral bound format and is the most comprehensive desktop reference guide of its kind available with over 1,000 Mac OS X keyboard shortcuts laid out tables all thoroughly tested on OS X 10.5 Leopard. Included are keyboard shortcuts for Finder, Apple Mail, Address Book, Safari, iTunes, iPhoto, iWeb, iMovie, iDVD, GarageBand (the entire iLife '08 suite) the OS X system itself and more.