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iBooks Author changes hint at content for iPhone, iPod touch

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
Apple may be on the verge of expanding the types of devices that can access rich content created using its iBooks Author program, according to a change in wording in iBooks' documentation.


image via Macworld


Previously, iBooks Author-created ebooks not viewed on an iPad would display a message saying "This book can only be viewed using iBooks 3.0 or later on an iPad. iOS 5.1 or later is required." Now, though, Macworld points out that the text reads "To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 3.0 or later and iOS 5.1 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later."

That iBooks will debut on the Mac in the near future is no surprise, given that Apple announced its arrival when showing off OS X Mavericks at this year's Worldwide Developer Conference. At the time, though, Apple did not specify that iBooks would be expanding beyond iPads on the iOS platform.

Allowing iBooks Author-created texts onto the iPhone and iPod would give owners of those devices a number of ebook features they currently cannot access. Among those are embedded videos, interactive content, and the reflowable portrait mode, in which rich elements can float alongside a book's text, resizable and interactive at the whim of the user.

iPhones and iPods still cannot download iBooks Author ebooks, but the capability could be unveiled at next week's media event, which will likely see the full unveiling of final versions of Mavericks, iOS 7, and the new iPhone models.
post #2 of 22

Cool. That'll be a nice feature for people. I'm really looking forward to iBooks on my Mac.

post #3 of 22

Yeah! It only makes sense that you should be able to preview the work on the machine you are creating it on. Having an iPad plugged into you Mac just to preview is really a kludge.

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post #4 of 22

They should fix the big shortcomings of iBooks first, for one the lack of support for vector-based graphics and the lack of support for navigating large graphics properly.

post #5 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by gctwnl View Post
 

They should fix the big shortcomings of iBooks first, for one the lack of support for vector-based graphics and the lack of support for navigating large graphics properly.

You can't drop SVG files into iBooks Author directly. You have to wrap them in a PDF file. Open the SVG in Illustrator and save copy as PDF. Drop the PDF into iBook Author. Works like a charm.

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post #6 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave MacLachlan View Post

Cool. That'll be a nice feature for people. I'm really looking forward to iBooks on my Mac.


 


Yeah, but unfortunately, for those of us that are stuck on SL ... this is just "one more thing" that we cannot participate in ... and don't even bother to suggest that I just upgrade my Mac ... I gladly spent $2300.00 for my 24" iMac but am now not in a position to do that anymore, nor could I justify the expense based on what I now use my Mac for .... Oh well ... such is life.
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post #7 of 22
Originally Posted by mstone View Post
You can't drop SVG files into iBooks Author directly. You have to wrap them in a PDF file.

 

As though I don't know, (but would like to confirm via empirical numbers) what does that do to the file's size (and, in turn, the size of the ePub file? Anyone with experience having to do this?

post #8 of 22
I'd like to see iBooks Author add a fully working and optimized HTML5 export option. Imagine being able to publish a magazine or book on the Internet with the touch of a button. I'd even forgive Apple for dropping iWeb.
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post #9 of 22
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post
I'd like to see iBooks Author add a fully working and optimized HTML5 export option. Imagine being able to publish a magazine or book on the Internet with the touch of a button.

 

Imagine being able to steal a magazine or book by just downloading three files, HTML, CSS, and JS. 

post #10 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post
 
Originally Posted by mstone View Post
You can't drop SVG files into iBooks Author directly. You have to wrap them in a PDF file.

 

As though I don't know, (but would like to confirm via empirical numbers) what does that do to the file's size (and, in turn, the size of the ePub file? Anyone with experience having to do this?

Well yes it increases the file size. The amount varies, but 400% is not unusual. I guess it depends on how many svg we are talking about to whether it is significant or not. For example I have 25 kb svg that turns into 120 kb PDF.

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post #11 of 22
Originally Posted by mstone View Post
For example I have 25 kb svg that turns into 120 kb PDF.

 

Bah. Poofy Dumb Format. How terrible.

post #12 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post
 
Originally Posted by mstone View Post
For example I have 25 kb svg that turns into 120 kb PDF.

 

Bah. Poofy Dumb Format. How terrible.

I was able to get it down to 68 kb by unchecking Illustrator editing option which is on by default.

 

Edit: I now have it at 59 kb by jumping through a few more hoops.

 

Edit 2: Ok finally got it down to 28 kb. The trick is apparently to save it as an EPS and then distill it rather than using Illustrator to create the pdf.


Edited by mstone - 9/5/13 at 2:57pm

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post #13 of 22

I would *love* a Newsstand Author! Something for small market content creators: doesn't need to be a entire suite-type thing like Adobe's Digital Production Publishing (or whatever it's called), but man, something like that would be awesome. Sigh.

post #14 of 22
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

Edit 2: Ok finally got it down to 29 kb. The trick is apparently to save it as an EPS and then distill it rather than using Illustrator to create the pdf.

 

And EPS are still accepted by iBooks Author? Well, that's refreshing, at least. Thanks for the diddling!

post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post
 
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

Edit 2: Ok finally got it down to 29 kb. The trick is apparently to save it as an EPS and then distill it rather than using Illustrator to create the pdf.

 

And EPS are still accepted by iBooks Author? Well, that's refreshing, at least. Thanks for the diddling!

EPS don't work in iBooks as far as I can tell.

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post #16 of 22
Originally Posted by mstone View Post
EPS don't work in iBooks as far as I can tell.

 

Well, there we go again… I'll keep gunning for SVG support, then.

post #17 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post
 
Originally Posted by mstone View Post
EPS don't work in iBooks as far as I can tell.

 

Well, there we go again… I'll keep gunning for SVG support, then.

You sort of need a wrapper for SVG. You can't just plop them into a document because it is XML. Some browser I believe do support <img src=x.svg> but I don't think Safari does due to some security issue as there can be malicious scripts in an svg.

 

I did a test and I guess Safari does support SVG directly in an <img> tag. Probably disables any scripts though.


Edited by mstone - 9/5/13 at 3:51pm

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post #18 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Imagine being able to steal a magazine or book by just downloading three files, HTML, CSS, and JS. 

I was referring to a new way to create web sites.
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post #19 of 22
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post
I was referring to a new way to create web sites.

 

In that case, bring it on. It'd be great.

post #20 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post
 

 

And EPS are still accepted by iBooks Author? Well, that's refreshing, at least. Thanks for the diddling!

 

No, he's "distilling" the EPS in Acrobat to create a PDF.

 

I wonder if the hoops through which he's jumped to get the file size down have also reduced the image quality to the point that one might as well use a bitmap anyway?

post #21 of 22
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

I wonder if the hoops through which he's jumped to get the file size down have also reduced the image quality to the point that one might as well use a bitmap anyway?

 

… From vector stays vector. How could it reduce quality?

post #22 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post
 

… From vector stays vector. How could it reduce quality?

 

Oh, I have no idea, but I'm not nearly as creative as Adobe. If there's a way, Adobe's software will expose it.

 

I'm not at my own computer right now so I can't check, but I'm sure I found some settings in Acrobat Distiller that are universally destructive. Or maybe I have defective recall. Because I only use Distiller to create PDFs for pre-press (since OSX will let me "print" to PDF for anything non-critical) I turn off anything and everything that tries to alter anything in any way whatsoever, so maybe I'm erroneously associating remembering to turn off data compression with Distiller actually doing something destructive to vectors.

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