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iBrary The Next iApp?

post #1 of 49
Thread Starter 
Credit to the site that posted the screenshot:

<a href="http://www.rumortracker.com/comments.php?id=67_0_1_0_C" target="_blank">http://www.rumortracker.com/comments.php?id=67_0_1_0_C</a>

The Image: (note to MODS: Maybe you can re-host this image localy since I don't this post to kill that other sites bandwidth)



Rumor text that came with the image:

"This is a screenshot (I was told it was attached to a bug or report) of an Apple iApp currently in development. It's called iBrary, although I'm told it's had several names (including "BookWorm" and "OGReadmore"). It works by browsing a local book repository, a public Internet library, or a global Internet library (dunno which repository) for books or periodicals. It presently uses a format (.ibook) that is a sort of hybrid between eBooks and Audible.com (it seems that Harry Potter is available in this format). You can listen to the recording of the book as you read, since iBrary syncs the book's text with the recording. I am also told that it utilizes dramatically improved text-to-speech, which suggests that may be a built-in feature of an upcoming OS update. This allows books which don't have soundtracks to be read by the computer, in any of 4 (currently) voices: Storytime, Narrator, Novella, and Anchorman. The synthesis quality is outstanding, seemingly able to handle emotion quite well. Services are also available which allow you to lookup words in a dictionary or thesaurus, which may have a connection to Sherlock, or be handled within the app. When you click on the curled page corners there is an (OpenGL powered?) animation of the page flipping. iBrary seems to be aimed toward the education and accessibility markets. I'm told that the app will probably not be ready for MacWorld SF 2003, but is more likely to emerge at the Boston show."

Well what do you think?

Dave

[ 10-27-2002: Message edited by: DaveGee ]</p>
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post #2 of 49
Thread Starter 
Just wanna add some additional speculation to this thread...

Could someone please refresh my memory? Didn't Steve Jobs make a comment about 'text to speech' at one of the Apple events this year?

MWSF? WWDC? xServe? MWNY?

I can't remember where it was said but I sure remember it happening... I think it was a Q&A style event where someone asked about TTS and it's current quality and Steve said something like 'we are looking for better voices as we speak... Apple is hiring.

Okay that might not have been exactly what was said but that is how I remember it...

Anyone else remember this?

Dave

[ 10-27-2002: Message edited by: DaveGee ]</p>
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post #3 of 49
If this is a mockup, the guy spent days on this. It looks real, and the idea makes sense especially for the iBook which is so small that you can easily take it to bed or to a café to read a book.
post #4 of 49
If the books are free, just like going to a library then hell yeah. But if apple is just trying to juice me for more money by making me open a $10 a month account to rent books then screw that. I guess only time will tell.
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post #5 of 49
They'll be free for a while, then .Mac.
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post #6 of 49
Sounds like another .mac feature.
post #7 of 49
Steve is not going to get me pay for that

I've stop reading books since I graduated...

i only read comics and magazines now
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post #8 of 49
From the icon it look like it will be a .Mac app.
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post #9 of 49
It sounds interesting, but the name sucks. I'd be ok if it's part of .mac (or at least enhanced by it) b/c I decided to join.
post #10 of 49
Very Kewl.

I'd love this thing to sync w my iPod and me to be able to read ebooks while listening to my favorite music. I've been rip'n audio books for my iPod, but there's nothing like reading a book at your own pace and leisure..


mika.

[ 10-27-2002: Message edited by: PC^KILLA ]</p>
post #11 of 49
I have to agree with torifile: Although it looks and sounds authentic, and although it's a seriously cool idea (even if they do .Mac it), if they actually call it "iBrary" I'm going to fly out to Cupertino and whack Steve upside the head with the biggest clue-by-four I can find.

One more thing: Once you've got your iBooks (heh - I knew something would come out of that trademark agreement) on your iBook, why not be able to use iSync to upload them to a handheld reader? Just something to think about...
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post #12 of 49
Fake.... come on... it's nearly an exact replica of the iCal window with a little ad banner tray thing a majig at the bottom.
post #13 of 49
iBrary... the name reminds me a bit too much of iBrator, a mockup of an item for her pleasure which has been circling the net as of late.

Anyway. I am one of few (?) people who actually read e-books on their computer screen, and this app makes me think of some issues:

There is already an explosion of e-book formats, both proprietary and not (.txt vs. .pdb - pdf), and it is hellish to convert (pirated?) books between stupid formats that you can and cannot read. I personally prefer the use of txt files, which I layout a bit ( in Appleworks even, probably the only use I have for that now) and then save to pdf (as I think acrobat has about the best possibilities for basic reading).

Now, as the app looks, there's the question of visibility: in acrobat, you can put a text over your entire screen and then scroll with the keyboard arrows. (so: you have only one -piece of- a page on your screen, which is quite relaxing to look at). This however may not even be such a good point (I presume iBrary or whatever its name may be will have several possibilities).

A thing I do fear however is the ongoing trend to lose freedom (to pirate , among others): programs like these, which work with proprietary -binary- formats... it cuts of your hands (no more copying of paragraphs, or editing as you which, or viewing the document in another app, in another decade...). I think with regret at the times when downloading mp3s was still mainly a http business...

Anyway, I'm not really making such a good point, whatever.
post #14 of 49
[quote]Originally posted by applenut:
<strong>Fake.... come on... it's nearly an exact replica of the iCal window with a little ad banner tray thing a majig at the bottom.</strong><hr></blockquote>

look at the small symbols in the window.
post #15 of 49
[quote]Originally posted by PC^KILLA:
<strong>I'd love this thing to sync w my iPod and me to be able to read ebooks while listening to my favorite music. I've been rip'n audio books for my iPod, but there's nothing like reading a book at your own pace and leisure..</strong><hr></blockquote>
You'd read books on your iPod?!

I seriously dislike e-books. They're fine as a research tool - indexed, searchable documents are great, but for actual reading, you can't beat ink on paper.

Belle the bibliophile.
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post #16 of 49
[quote]Originally posted by Defiant:
<strong>

look at the small symbols in the window.</strong><hr></blockquote>

yea and?

means nothing.... losers have gone to great lengths to trick mac users about future software and hardware... how about that iWalk video? The effort that may have went into creating this is nothing compared to that.

I really find it hard to believe this is real when it so closely resembles iCal and also just don't see Apple doing an app ike this... there are not many devices.... at least popular ones for this to communicate to and I don't see Apple making one either.
post #17 of 49
[quote]Originally posted by applenut:
<strong>means nothing.... losers have gone to great lengths to trick mac users about future software and hardware... how about that iWalk video? The effort that may have went into creating this is nothing compared to that.
</strong><hr></blockquote>

<img src="graemlins/hmmm.gif" border="0" alt="[Hmmm]" />

[ 10-27-2002: Message edited by: Defiant ]</p>
post #18 of 49
[quote]Originally posted by Belle:
<strong>
You'd read books on your iPod?!

Belle the bibliophile.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Yes. Already do to some extent..

Belle, do you know of a good place you could recommend to d/l free audio books from?


mika.
post #19 of 49
[quote]Originally posted by PC^KILLA:
<strong>Yes. Already do to some extent..</strong><hr></blockquote>
On the little screen? Honestly?
[quote]<strong>Belle, do you know of a good place you could recommend to d/l free audio books from?</strong><hr></blockquote>
That's difficult. Though many works are now in the public domain, most are, obviously, only available in text form. Unfortunately, it costs a lot of money to get someone to read them for a recording.

No doubt someone with a better insight to the more nefarious parts of the internet could maybe direct you to servers offering MP3s culled from CD audio books.

Oh, and on a related matter: If anyone is contemplating buying the unabridged Harry Potter CDs, get the European ones narrated by Stephen Fry. They're so much better than the US ones, which are narrated by Jim Dale.
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post #20 of 49
If it is real wouldn't it impress the education market?

OK..it's a long way from replacing the clarity (and portability-no batteries) of the printed page, but apple have sold thousands of iBooks to replace school text books. This would be great if the teacher wants everyone to look at specific texts. I think it'd be a big step.

To me this is very Apple, but doubtless there will be plenty of dissenting voices in this forum I really hope it'll be out soon. Another killer app for the press to rave about perhaps?

[ 10-27-2002: Message edited by: Proxy ]</p>
post #21 of 49
PC^KILLA: <a href="http://www.audiobooksforfree.com/screen_main.asp" target="_blank">http://www.audiobooksforfree.com/screen_main.asp</a> . They have annoying as hell ads at the beginning of each chapter and the sound quality SUCKS, but they're free. You might check out audible.com too. I was averse paying for things too, but it's really cool to be able to bookmark and listen on the iPod. Worth the $$, IMHO.

Anyway, back on topic: at least it's not iBerry.
post #22 of 49
[quote]Originally posted by stunned:
<strong>Steve is not going to get me pay for that

I've stop reading books since I graduated...

i only read comics and magazines now </strong><hr></blockquote>

I can see that. You sound like the Hulk.
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post #23 of 49
-Looks quite cool indeed.
-Idea isnt bad at all
-Interface is quite nice

But I seriously wonder if this a fake. I am no "Know it all" when it comes to these rumors but something about this makes me think it is a pure fake.

The name is not very apple. What the hell is iBrary? iLibrary sounds just fine.

My .02
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post #24 of 49
I'm with applenut here, my gut feeling (and knowledge of photoshop) says this is fake... I would love for it to be real, but my feeling is it's just a good fake...

[ 10-27-2002: Message edited by: New ]</p>
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post #25 of 49
Assuming it's real, any clues as to why there's a Publish button (next to the highlighted Read button)?

Would this iApp also let you create your own books and then publish them to .Mac?
post #26 of 49
it would definatly be a good marketing gimick for Apple, in conjuntion with an iBook or powerbook...maybe apple plans on releasing a .book reader digital hub hardware style device.
maybe its to be an apple PDA that doubles as a book reader?
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post #27 of 49
[quote]Originally posted by DaveGee:
<strong>Just wanna add some additional speculation to this thread...

Could someone please refresh my memory? Didn't Steve Jobs make a comment about 'text to speech' at one of the Apple events this year?

MWSF? WWDC? xServe? MWNY?

I can't remember where it was said but I sure remember it happening... I think it was a Q&A style event where someone asked about TTS and it's current quality and Steve said something like 'we are looking for better voices as we speak... Apple is hiring.

Okay that might not have been exactly what was said but that is how I remember it...

Anyone else remember this?

Dave

[ 10-27-2002: Message edited by: DaveGee ]</strong><hr></blockquote>

I think it was at WWDC that Steve said that Apple was in the market for better text to speech. I assumed this meant they were looking at AT&T Natural Voices.
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post #28 of 49
Apple's current strategy seems to be about building on standards.

Mail has .mbox, iTunes has mp3, AddressBook = vCard, iDisk = WebDAV, iCal = .ical. Then there's unix, posix, bsd, java, pdf, rendezvous, usb, firewire, 802.11/airport etc. etc.

Therefore, if Apple was going to do this then they would be building on an accepted standard or would have submitted their own standard for acceptance by the relevent content producers.

The rumor suggests .ibook but this could just be a wrapper for a current standard. Is there any relevant standard out there with these capabilities, preferably with content available?
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post #29 of 49
Something tells me this is real...if you look at the dock you will see an application with an ant eater (an animal) as the icon. That is the icon for Apple's bug writing software (I will not say what it is called for security reasons)
post #30 of 49
[quote]Originally posted by Wrong Robust:
<strong>maybe its to be an apple PDA that doubles as a book reader?</strong><hr></blockquote>

<img src="graemlins/bugeye.gif" border="0" alt="[Skeptical]" /> <img src="graemlins/lol.gif" border="0" alt="[Laughing]" /> <img src="graemlins/oyvey.gif" border="0" alt="[No]" />
post #31 of 49
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by murk:
<strong>

I think it was at WWDC that Steve said that Apple was in the market for better text to speech. I assumed this meant they were looking at AT&T Natural Voices.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Yep... I found one of the quotes... Not the one I remember reading but this was from MacNN right after the WWDC.

"# Universal Access improvements includes full zoom support, offering users the ability to zoom into any part of the screen with support for rollovers and transparency as well as full motion DVD video. A new Screen Reader preference (in the Speech Control Panel) allows the computer to speak any text the mouse rolls over for improved navigation access. Jaguar will also include new visual notifications. All of these will have Developer APIs, allowing new applications to take advantage of Universal Access improvements. Jobs light-heartedly remarked that Apple was "in the market for" improved text-to-speech technology, after the Victoria voice was used to speak text for the Screen Reader technology demonstration."

Dave

[ 10-28-2002: Message edited by: DaveGee ]</p>
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post #32 of 49
[quote]Originally posted by Belle:
<strong>
I seriously dislike e-books. They're fine as a research tool - indexed, searchable documents are great, but for actual reading, you can't beat ink on paper.
</strong><hr></blockquote>

i agree with belle. ebooks are wonderful for textbooks and similar types of works, but for leisure reading? at the seybold boston 2000 conference, ebooks were the new "big thing" and at the keynote, only one guy had the guts to say that he preferred to read a paperback. the average consumer does not like reading text on a screen for long hours, no matter how many technological advantages are present in the new device. personally, if i'm going off to the beach or park, do i want to take my precious laptop or some paperback i got at the library for leisure reading? paperback all the way. print will never die!
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post #33 of 49
The interesting thing is that there were ever a market for low-cost, lightweight, tough tablet PCs, the education market is there. It's just not cost-effective at this point. That's why Apple is developing InkWell and dipping their toes into eBooks* and so forth. It's coming... just not yet.

With their struggle in the edu market, it wouldn't at all surprise me to see an iApp geared more toward students and education. Looks potentially very neat.

(* People who hate the very idea of electronic books have to remember there's a difference between leisure and work reading. Electronic textbooks are fantastically useful -- 1000% lighter, easy to have a nearly unlimited number w/ you on one computer, and the ability to print out to paper chapters as one wishes. Also critical is the cost savings to schools and universities. Paper isn't going away, and defending eBooks is *not* about replacing all paper versions of "The Goblet of Fire" with electronic fascimiles.)

[ 10-28-2002: Message edited by: Hobbes ]</p>
post #34 of 49
[quote]Originally posted by Hobbes:
Paper isn't going away, and defending eBooks is *not* about replacing all paper versions of "The Goblet of Fire" with electronic fascimiles.<hr></blockquote>

That is SO true. I own a rather big library and am really fond of books, but I also use my Palm as an eBook reader, just because it is practical. It would be a dream come true to have an iPod style device with a larger color screen, PIM functionality and eBook capabilities. Oh, and multimedia of course - that new Archos Jukebox is really cool.
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post #35 of 49
note PB and IB in the dock.

Patently fake, IMO. the Times font in the bottom is just not an Apple looking thing.
post #36 of 49
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by Jonathan:
<strong>note PB and IB in the dock.

Patently fake, IMO. the Times font in the bottom is just not an Apple looking thing.</strong><hr></blockquote>

But also look at the 'anteater' icon... That isn't something most of the public has on their machine.

I read that it was an internal apple bug-reporter.

Dave
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post #37 of 49
This is fake

As a librarian, I have more than enough contact with this to know how impossible licensing with online publishers is. You think music is bad, you have seen nothing. There is a lot of drama between publishers, librarians and authors right now. From proprietary formats to constricting license agreements, online publishing is in a horribly inaccessable place, even for a major library with massive funding like the one I work in. It is nothing less than a ****ing mess.

In other words, as cool as an idea as it is, there is no way that it is possible.
post #38 of 49
Well it's *officialy fake now ... Apple legal would have pulled it by now. Based on that little "page turn" in the bottom rightcorner ... the artist could learn a thing or two about light direction.
post #39 of 49
[quote]Originally posted by DaveGee:
<strong>

But also look at the 'anteater' icon... That isn't something most of the public has on their machine.

I read that it was an internal apple bug-reporter.

Dave</strong><hr></blockquote>

Are you saying this based on what I had said six replies up?
post #40 of 49
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by Jared:
<strong>

Are you saying this based on what I had said six replies up?</strong><hr></blockquote>

Well yes... and no... I have some insight into internal apple stuff as well...

Dave

P.S. MASH was a great show wasn't it?
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