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Former Apple Engineers team up with Al Gore to launch dynamic App Store ebooks

post #1 of 42
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Mike Matas and Kimon Tsinteris, former employees of Apple, left the company to develop an new ebook publishing format using Apple's iOS Cocoa Touch, and are now launching their first title with Apple board member Al Gore.

Matas and Tsinteris' new firm Push Pop Press has put together a rich format for ebooks that incorporates audio, video, geolocated photos and interactive graphics using intuitive pinch gestures.

Rather than simply repackaging books' text with simple embedded media files as existing ebook formats used by Amazon's Kindle or Apple's own iBooks do, Push Pop volumes are native Cocoa Touch apps, making them animated, dynamic, fast and responsive, much more so than epub, Adobe Flash or web-based content can be.

The company wants to serve as a publishing platform for authors, turning their works into dynamic works that can be sold through the App Store.

The app is the richest form of storytelling, Matas said in a profile by Wired . [Push Pop Press] opens doors to telling a story with more photos, more videos and interactions.

To demonstrate the format of the new dynamic publications, Push Pop Press worked with author and Apple board member Al Gore, developing an iOS app version of his new book "Our Choice: A Plan to Solve the Climate Crisis."

The company has also posted a demonstration of the book's features in Al Gore's Our Choice Guided Tour on Vimeo.



Tsinteris originally worked at Apple as an engineer working on Mac OS X and on the Maps app for iPhone, while Matas was hired by Apple from Delicious Monster in 2005 at the age of 19 to to help develop the visual style of Mac OS X and iOS user interface designs.

The duo's new publishing format takes aim at Adobe's competing Digital Publishing Suite solution, which dumps existing works in InDesign into a quasi-native iOS app format that consists largely of static graphics. That solution is currently used by a variety of Conde Nast magazines to deliver their iPad editions, including Wired, but the format is very large and limited in a variety of respects, such as its ability to present text in variable sizes.
post #2 of 42
Now pretend for a moment that this app was created through a partnership with George W Bush, and that he was narrating.
post #3 of 42
Now this is how you deliver rich, informative content to your base. You become so immersed that you forget Al Gore had his dirty palms all over this project.
post #4 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Postulant View Post

You become so immersed that you forget Al Gore had his dirty palms all over this project.

A characteristic common to those who work for a living.
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post #5 of 42
PLEASE, does anyone care about the global warming scare-monger of nonsense Gore who won't debate his NONSENSE?!

http://www.heartland.org/policybot/r...re_Debate.html
post #6 of 42
Jeepers, Al Gore's delivery was so robotic, I kept expecting his head to split neatly apart in a demonstration of deeply immersive interactive animatronics.

But that platform looks pretty good, hope it gains traction.
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post #7 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by magicj View Post

Setting aside the politics, the project looks interesting from a technology standpoint.

I'd be interested in seeing Apple develop a standardized set of tools for easily developing these kinds of apps. Similar tools for creating content for the iBook store would also be nice.

Yes the technology is really interesting (I agree.. lets avoid the politics here).

The iBookStore is limited with the ePub format, Apple needs to broaden out and help develop the next type of interactivity (in magazines and books). They have writing, audio and video programs, as well as Xcode - why don't they have a brilliant authoring system?

Oh, the "Toy Story" book (free so they can sell you the sequels!) is an app too instead of a book. Apple needs to find a way of putting these book-apps into the iBookStore at the very least. It just makes sense. to group them together.
post #8 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by andyapple View Post

Jeepers, Al Gore's delivery was so robotic, I kept expecting his head to split neatly apart in a demonstration of deeply immersive interactive animatronics.

But that platform looks pretty good, hope it gains traction.

If you pinch his head you can get back to the table of contents. Go ahead, pinch his head. Now pinch again to hear him talk like a robot. Amazing.

I thought this book would be something more interesting based on the talk of new technology, but it seemed to mostly be a normal book where you now have to pinch the pictures instead of tapping or double-tapping them. Zzzzzzz.
post #9 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by echosonic View Post

Now pretend for a moment that this app was created through a partnership with George W Bush, and that he was narrating.

Instead of pinching you'd 'do that... thing... with your fingers. Now look, see, the world is ending because Jesus is risen-ating again. Now do the finger thing to go back to the pictures.'

Wow, now I can't decide which book I want to read less.
post #10 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrstep View Post

I thought this book would be something more interesting based on the talk of new technology, but it seemed to mostly be a normal book where you now have to pinch the pictures instead of tapping or double-tapping them. Zzzzzzz.

It's a smooth interface and very easy to move about. It adds cleanly to what a book can do without becoming something other than a book.

But yeah, there are many books you can read, click on an image, watch a video in etc. This one just is the best I've seen.

One question...
so I bought the book and downloaded it. Then I opened it and it downloaded some more. Then I opened a chapter and it downloaded some more. Why all the downloading? Is that it then, or will it download other stuff later?
post #11 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by echosonic View Post

Now pretend for a moment that this app was created through a partnership with George W Bush, and that he was narrating.

It would be a story about a pet goat and you would be able to hold it upside down.
post #12 of 42
First, can one buy the App, like one could buy Aperture, Final Cut Pro, etc., and use the App to make your own iBooks? Or does one have to license it per book? Or do it through the company?

Indeed, this App is an improvement over the ePub, which is open source, but in some applications, I would still like an electronic format that mimics a book, just like the iBook but incorporating many of the features and more of the aforementioned Apps.

I agree with the others, I wish Apple would create an app along this line that would be intended for authors, just lke Aperture is intended for photomanagement and Final Cut Pro is intended for movie and video editing.

CGC
post #13 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by libertyforall View Post

PLEASE, does anyone care about the global warming scare-monger of nonsense Gore who won't debate his NONSENSE?!

http://www.heartland.org/policybot/r...re_Debate.html

PLEASE, does anyone other than a few TPs care about the hyperpolitical, unscientific, laughably out-of-touch heartland.org NONSENSE?
post #14 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by magicj View Post

BTW, Apple's Pages app lets you create epub books with pictures or movies embedded in it. You just can't move them around the page when viewing the book in iBooks.

I would be interested to see links for this. The ePub template provided by Apple does not have the feature.

CGC
post #15 of 42
Excelsior!

Good luck with that, Mr. Gore. They already have this new media for rich interactive reading called the Internets. Oh wait, you invented that too.

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post #16 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Excelsior!

Good luck with that, Mr. Gore. They already have this new media for rich interactive reading called the Internets. Oh wait, you invented that too.

He drove the funding junior. As the lead US Senator he pushed for all the funding for the research for the entire time he was a US Senator, but don't worry about it. If you cared about facts you'd know that already.
post #17 of 42
[QUOTE=libertyforall;1856165]PLEASE, does anyone care about the global warming scare-monger of nonsense Gore who won't debate his NONSENSE?!

This is supposed to be a technology forum, not yet another outlet for 'Fartland' propaganda. Why don't you get some funding from Donald Trump to produce an app using this amazing technology to show how Obama is a monkey born of an illicit communist/jihadist encounter in a Siberian gulag. That would get a lot of downloads!
post #18 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by magicj View Post

Not to take anything from Gore on the issue, but having used DARPANET back in the early 80's, I wouldn't give them credit for the internet. DARPANET sucked.

Researchers at CERN, using NeXT computers, developed HTML and only then did we have something that resembles the internet today.

Impressionistic views based on your 'use' of DARPANET are irrelevant.

As with all technologies, things build on each other. HTML might have been utterly useless without the internet.

More interestingly, as something for those who want to take the government out of this type of cutting-edge research to ponder: funding for CERN comes from the taxpayers.
post #19 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by magicj View Post

Guys, the debate's over. Cap and Trade failed. COP 15 failed. Al Gore's Carbon Credit market went belly up. The EPA has 2 years before Obama gets kicked out and the economy will almost certainly be in the tank the entire time. It's a dead issue that's not worth arguing over.

For you, maybe. You seem to have missed the news on COP16, and you are obviously not aware of the EU-ETS. Nor of serious plans by countries such as China and Japan to create their own emissions trading systems and/or carbon taxes.

You should read more.

Memo to the US on this issue: the rest of the world is actually moving on, and whether the US joins in or chooses to stay on the sidelines is not something that folks are losing much sleep over at this point.

Aside: It might come as a surprise (especially to the uninformed), but Al Gore had nothing to with cap and trade other than provide some broad Congressional testimony on climate change when the bill was being considered in the House.
post #20 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by magicj View Post

As I said, not worth arguing over.

The greens are like those Japanese soldiers stuck on islands in the 50s, still fighting a war that's been lost. I know there's little I can do to change your mind, so you keep fighting, soldier.

*salutes*

Oh, don't try to take the high road: you thought it was worth arguing over, otherwise you wouldn't have interjected with your half-informed pap about 'COP15' and 'cap and trade'.

It is a sad state of affairs on your side of the aisle when simple science is confused with being 'green.'

There's no law against scientific stupidity, so go march right on ahead .....
post #21 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by magicj View Post

HTML can be made to work over any network protocol, it doesn't require DARAPANET. That's pretty much cut and dried.

And (I thought) we were discussing Al Gore inventing the internet, not the role of government funding projects. At least, that was the impression I got when you belittled someone for making the (perfectly reasonable) observation that Gore had nothing to do with the creation of the internet what so ever.

It's DARPANET.

You brought it up when (I too thought) we were discussing Al Gore.

And, while on the topic. In what other context is HTML used extensively? (I am seriously curious, I'd like to know; I'll readily admit to ignorance there -- that's why I said 'HTML might have been utterly.....').
post #22 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by magicj View Post

Now science I don't mind talking about.

Perhaps you could tell me how much temperature, in degrees C, will rise from a doubling of CO₂ from current levels. Just to be clear I'm asking about just CO₂, not any feedback loops or other causes. If you prefer, you can provide your answer in W/m².

Just so we don't waste time, (i) 'Temperature' by when? (ii) What do you think current levels are? (iii) Leaving aside the fact that no one currently has any decent models of feedback loops, when you say 'CO2,' do you mean just CO2 or do you actually mean CO2e?

(PS: I may have to continue this discussion tomorrow, since it's getting pretty late for me where I am).
post #23 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by magicj View Post

Now science I don't mind talking about.

Perhaps you could tell me how much temperature, in degrees C, will rise from a doubling of CO₂ from current levels. Just to be clear I'm asking about just CO₂, not any feedback loops or other causes. If you prefer, you can provide your answer in W/m².

Oh, in the meantime, you could also perhaps answer my question about non-internet contexts in which HTML is widely used, since you said it was 'cut and dried.'
post #24 of 42
The global-warming movement needs this sort of whiz-bang graphics to make up for lack of evidence.

EDIT:
Come to think of it, Al Gore and Lady GaGa have a lot in common. Image over substance....
post #25 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by magicj View Post

How about we just cut to the chase on that and say the answer is 1.7C±0.2C. Would agree that's a reasonable value?

Probably not. Closer to a median 3 degC (5.4 degF).

That's a pretty substantial increase (leaving aside the fact that 1.7 ± 0.2 is non-trivial).

The arithmetic is quite simple, really. Globally, we currently emit about 31 gigatons (gt) of CO2 from energy consumption, another 5gt from various other emissions sources, and an additional 8gt - 9gt of CO2e, for, say, a total of about 45gt of CO2e. Let's err on the conservative side and say, 40gt. Earth systems -- land and sea -- naturally absorb about 16gt to 20 gt annually. Let's be generous and say, 20gt. That leaves 20gt that is being added annually to the atmosphere. Now, it is quite well-known from reasonably well-established science (happy to give you references) that every additional 8gt adds 1ppm to the atmosphere (that then sticks around for about 120 - 150 years). So, that's conservatively, 2.5ppm we're adding per year.

We're currently at about 390ppm of just CO2 (compared to pre-inudtrial 280ppm), and perhaps 430 - 440ppm of CO2e. 2.5ppm extra per year by 2040 is an additional 75ppm, i.e., 465ppm of CO2 (and at least 505 - 515ppm of CO2e).

Now, if you want to get a sense of what that implies in terms of temperature forecasts and where I am getting my median of 3 degC -- allowing for the fact that there is a fairly wide band of uncertainty in estimates -- look at p. 19 of this: http://climatecongress.ku.dk/ or p. 20 of this: http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/assessment-re...r4-wg1-spm.pdf

Granted, these are summary forecasts meant for a lay audience. But it would be too much for me to do now and here to go much beyond this. Moreover, not too many others are interested, so I would prefer not waste AI space on this (PM me if you want more specifics).
post #26 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by magicj View Post

epubs, the topic of this thread.

Gore deserves credit for pushing funding for advances in tech and for pushing to broaden the reach of the internet after it had been invented. But he didn't fund the invention of networks, nor the invention of HTML.

I did not say either, so it's moot.

I don't recall anyone else (seriously) saying it either.

And, you still have not answered my question (the answer for which you thought was 'cut and dried').

Sorry, I just noticed you said 'epubs'. How is that different from saying one could create an HTML page? I.e., is 'epubs' a standalone technology of some kind that would survive without the internet?
post #27 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by frugality View Post

The global-warming movement needs this sort of whiz-bang graphics to make up for lack of evidence.

Yeah, I too sometimes think that some such 'whiz-bang' appeal is necessary, but for the reason that some people have difficulty processing simple scientific data from tables and such.
post #28 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrstep View Post

Instead of pinching you'd 'do that... thing... with your fingers. Now look, see, the world is ending because Jesus is risen-ating again. Now do the finger thing to go back to the pictures.'

Wow, now I can't decide which book I want to read less.

Almost funny, except bush never claimed the world was ending, gore did. let me know how that smug thing works out for you.
post #29 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

Oh, don't try to take the high road: you thought it was worth arguing over, otherwise you wouldn't have interjected with your half-informed pap about 'COP15' and 'cap and trade'.

It is a sad state of affairs on your side of the aisle when simple science is confused with being 'green.'

There's no law against scientific stupidity, so go march right on ahead .....

There's also no law against moronic, elitist ecofascism, so lead the way toward preserving gaia's eternal happiness...and remember not to insult your pets by calling them pets any more.
post #30 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by magicj View Post

I think you're using IPCC values, which include their feedbacks. I was actually being very generous with the 1.7C number. The usual number tossed around is 1C.

From wikipedia:
"Without any feedbacks, a doubling of CO2 (which amounts to a forcing of 3.7 W/m2) would result in 1°C global warming, which is easy to calculate and is undisputed.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate...ity#Essentials

So yeah, it takes a long time to educate folks on these processes. People are tossing around what they call "science" when they really mean "IPCC propaganda".

And as I said on another thread, no amount of links in web posts can bring enlightenment. To get that, you have to do some footwork for yourself. I've pointed the way here and will say the next thing to look into is water vapor's role in all of this.

From here, I'll leave you to your own devices to do that footwork.

Wikipedia on this topic!? It's pointless, really.

As I said before, march right long. There's no law against scientific illiteracy.
post #31 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

He drove the funding junior. As the lead US Senator he pushed for all the funding for the research for the entire time he was a US Senator, but don't worry about it. If you cared about facts you'd know that already.

To quote my Dad (a taxpayer in the great State of Franklin) "We finally got the SOB out of Tennessee, now you keep him"

...should have titled his book - Fat, Dumb and Happy


You can not legislate stupidity.


go Tipper, go Tipper
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post #32 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

He drove the funding junior. As the lead US Senator he pushed for all the funding for the research for the entire time he was a US Senator, but don't worry about it. If you cared about facts you'd know that already.

So, to follow your logic:

Sergey Brin and Larry Page didn't invent Google.
Mark Zuckerberg didn't invent Facebook.
Steve Chen and Chad Jurley didn't invent YouTube.
Steve Jobs didn't invent Apple.

... it was the angels that were the "inventors".

Hell, we can take that one step further and say that if you were a taxpayer in that time period, you can say you are an "inventor of the internet" also since it was your money that funded the project.
post #33 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by echosonic View Post

There's also no law against moronic, elitist ecofascism, so lead the way toward preserving gaia's eternal happiness...and remember not to insult your pets by calling them pets any more.

Making up insulting names in place of real argument is a sign that you have nothing intelligent to offer. Which is descriptive of your side indeed.
post #34 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by frugality View Post

The global-warming movement needs this sort of whiz-bang graphics to make up for lack of evidence.

EDIT:
Come to think of it, Al Gore and Lady GaGa have a lot in common. Image over substance....

Amen, this whole "science" thing is vastly overrated. And why isn't that Darwin character in jail yet? Anyone can see monkeys and people are separate species. Sheesh!
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post #35 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by magicj View Post

Not to take anything from Gore on the issue, but having used DARPANET back in the early 80's, I wouldn't give them credit for the internet. DARPANET sucked.

Researchers at CERN, using NeXT computers, developed HTML and only then did we have something that resembles the internet today.

Actually, it wasn't until researchers at NCSA, funded through Gore's initiatives, developed Mosaic that we had something that resembles the "Internet" today.
post #36 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by xsu View Post

Making up insulting names in place of real argument is a sign that you have nothing intelligent to offer. Which is descriptive of your side indeed.

Feigning self-righteous indignation after calling somebody "scientifically stupid" is descriptive of yours. As is the forging of data to fit your pre-determined enviro-religious paradigm, presented under the banner of "science". Your side is no more scientific than a Chicago politician is honest. Own it.
post #37 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by echosonic View Post

Feigning self-righteous indignation after calling somebody "scientifically stupid" is descriptive of yours. As is the forging of data to fit your pre-determined enviro-religious paradigm, presented under the banner of "science". Your side is no more scientific than a Chicago politician is honest. Own it.

If you imagine that the scientific consensus on climate change is founded on "forged data" there is literally nothing anyone can say to you to change your mind.

As has been observed elsewhere, you can't use rational argument to dissuade opinions that were arrived at by something other than rational means.
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post #38 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

Amen, this whole "science" thing is vastly overrated. And why isn't that Darwin character in jail yet? Anyone can see monkeys and people are separate species. Sheesh!

I think you may have inadvertently posted in the wrong thread.
post #39 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by echosonic View Post

Feigning self-righteous indignation after calling somebody "scientifically stupid" is descriptive of yours. As is the forging of data to fit your pre-determined enviro-religious paradigm, presented under the banner of "science". Your side is no more scientific than a Chicago politician is honest. Own it.

Convince people that you understand what "Science" means, and show willingness to conduct an argument based on science instead of ideology and emotion, then people won't call you "scientifically stupid".
post #40 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Actually, it wasn't until researchers at NCSA, funded through Gore's initiatives, developed Mosaic that we had something that resembles the "Internet" today.

It doesn't matter. It is like asking who invented the wheel. A bunch of people over a period of time. What matters it what we are going to do with the wheel or the Internet going forward.

On the political subject of Gore, global warming etc:

There is nothing wrong with striving for less pollution, emissions, and destruction of the natural environment. Trying live together without disturbing your neighbors is a good thing. We definitely need fewer cars on the road and less dependance on oil for energy. When you look at nature, it really is the perfect model to copy. The entire ecosystem runs on solar power. Burning of fossil fuels is the root cause of many problems, some current and some yet to be.

You only have to look at the recent disasters of the Japanese nuclear accident or the oil spill in the gulf of Mexico to see that technology is a double edged sword. Whether it ends up killing us or saving us is also yet to be determined.

Life is too short to drink bad coffee.

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