The personal blog of Sven Seebeck

e-Book-Updates Ahead

If you are a regular visitor to this blog, you might be already familiar with the two e-books that I have made and released over the last two years. The first one, Cornwall - A Photographic Journey I have put together (trying to avoid the term written here) shortly after I received my iPad 1 and the second one, Mountain Sketches, just during last spring.

While I was, and still am, satisfied with the result, I couldn’t quite get together what I had in mind. It simply wasn’t quite matching my vision. Somehow the only solution getting done what I had in mind already then, would have been the production of a real app instead. Considered that everything that I do around here is out of pure passion and completely do-it-yourself, learning to code a decent app is quite a challenge and simply is too big of a task.

For my second e-book Mountain Sketches I tried to make the overall experience more pleasing, but didn’t really change the format. Releasing it in e-pub format, even though technically easy, didn’t seem useful then as I wasn’t really pleased with the way I could implement the images. In short I had no chance to get closer to my original idea and went again with the PDF-file format.

That is until iBooks Author got released just the other week. I’m pretty sure that many of you have been following the introduction of, or are at least familiar with the release, of Apple’s application just recently.

I haven’t been working with it much, but even after a few minutes of work in the app, it was obvious that with this tool, I can get much closer to what I was envisioning in the first place. More interactive and fun to use. Just like this website of mine.

By the time of this writing books made in iBook Author are neither cross-platform or can even be read on a Mac. Surely this not optimal but it would be the same though if the book would be released as an app. An iTunes-ish cross-plattform desktop reader could solve some issues here, as not everyone who owns an iPad also uses a Mac. But then again, there’s always the chance to also release it additionally as a PDF or in e-pub format.
I will refrain from further diving into the discussion about proprietary file formats and TOS and leave this to other, more competent bloggers. As usual there’s quite some buzz about both. On the TOS the digest though seems to be that a free publication outside the iBookstore is legal, but once one wants to sell the book he/she is tied to the iBookstore. Actually it’s no different than the appstore, at least the way I see this.

Which this brings me to the 2.0, or more mature, version of my e-books if you will.

One thing that is for sure is, that I will have a few coffee and have some fun with updating my e-books Cornwall - A Photographic Journey and Mountain Sketches especially for the iBook format. Some text will be re-written and added, new and more images will follow (still thinking about re-prossesing some of them in the LR4 beta as well) and I will try include some video and audio content. In short, I will make them as beautiful as possible and hope they will be a fun and enjoyable read.

Also I have plans to finally finish and release the already written draft of my Finnmark write up. I will publish it first here on the blog and then as well as an e-Book (PDF) and in an iBook format. Just as I did with my previous e-books.

I am sure that we will see a lot photobooks and materials in the very near future appearing all over the internet as with this tool it’s easy to produce more compelling products.

I might post every now and then a little update here on the blog and write a bit about my experiences with the production of the book. And of course it will be a free download here. And who knows, one day, I might be trying to publish an e-book in the iBookstore. But before that happens, I will have to live up to my own standards. So until then, I hope you will be enjoying my current e-books and the upcoming re-releases.

I hope to have the first one ready in by the end of next month. Feel free to keep an eye on the blog or Twitter for updates.