Originally Posted by chabig
From iBooks Author help:
"When you create a book, you begin with a template. A template includes everything you need to create a book: a set of book elements and a variety of layouts for chapters, sections, and pages. Using a template, you can create a professional-looking book with a consistent design across all of its elements. You can modify the elements of any template to suit your needs. If you want to reuse a modified template in the future, you can save the template so that it’s available in the Template Chooser. If you want to save your template without having it appear in the Template Chooser, you need to save a document."
Actually, this feature is so restraining that you can't humanly design templates this way. You'd better code them from scratch. Seriously.
Besides, "save as template" is technically "hybrid". It doesn't save an ibooks author template, it saves a book template. Let me explain to make things clear :
- you have designed a magazine with sections, this feature is great.
- you want to design a template so that others can use them like Apple templates, you're doomed.
In the format > Advanced menu, you got something called "Define object for Current Master" (which happens to become "Update Object for current layout" when your object is defined). This allows you to alter Apple-designed templates in depth. If you don't define objects one by one, pages you'll add in your custom template will "use" the templates of the standard Apple ibatemplate.
In fact, when you're saving a template in iba, you're sort of duplicating your book and making it available in the templates chooser. Custom templates you're saving are not working like standard templates shipping with the app. If you want to make a real ibooks author template, you have to define objects for Master one by one, you can't define a page layout for Master. But there's no logic at all : you can't edit page numbers nor backgrounds, updating objects behaves strangely (sometimes it brings your object back to its original state, sometimes not), you can't get rid of some objects and so on and so forth.
We get used to it since designing templates for OS X apps has always been a pain in the neck. It's never been easy to create templates from scratch, you must edit Apple-designed templates and that's it. No matter the "save as template" feature could be insanely powerful, it has always been restraining. No matter this contradicts the good old "Mac makes it easy to create", which is obviously untrue in this particular case.
As a matter of consequence, if you want to make real ibooks author templates (and not book templates), you have two choices :
- create a blank ibatemplate, which means you'll alter an existing template or code it from scratch and waste days of your life defining each object for Master.
- code templates from scratch and pray they work. Anyone trying to code mail templates knows sometimes it doesn't work and you'll never discover why.
In other words, creating a real template is time-consuming. I thought it would be easy, I was wrong. I thought I could distribute templates so that everyone can use them, I was wrong. Now, I'm coding templates and it will take months to achieve this instead of days because the in-app feature is incredibly limited. And I don't count on Apple to improve it, they have never done this before for other OS X apps….