Imagine a book in which you could become one of the main characters, choosing how to interact with other characters and even affect the plot. This is how stories in Versu work — you can determine your character’s objectives, actions, attitude and more as you explore the interactive stories.
Disclaimer: The stories fall into the Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice realm of literature. So if you’re a fan of those, you’ll be a fan of the currently available stories. And if you’re not, you might want to pass on this one.
Ready to read on? Click “more” to take a look at the future of story-telling. (more…)
If you have a local library, you may well be used to visiting and borrowing books from it. But, did you know that there are many titles available to borrow as digital works? All you need is your library card, and a little app called Overdrive Media Console.
As well as borrowing written works, you can also borrow audiobooks, just as you would in person. The main difference is that with digital borrowing the digital title will check itself back in automatically and there are never any late fees.
So, grab your library card and follow us through a little walk-through of Overdrive Media Console.
If you love audiobooks then you’ll have probably come across Audible. Today, we’re looking at the recent addition of an iPad client to their range of listening possibilities. Since Audible is owned by such a large enterprise (it’s an Amazon company) then we should expect a well-presented app of the highest quality that caters for audiobook-loving people everywhere.
In many respects, this is what we get with Audible for the iPad. It includes bookmark synchronisation across e-books and audio streams and also contains a huge back-catalogue of audiobook titles. The app looks the part and for this review, we’ll take it on the road with some in-depth testing to see if it has substance beneath all that gloss, or if it’s simply all for show (after all, you shouldn’t judge an audiobook by its cover!). Read on to find out what we encountered.
Do you remember how much you loved those choose-your-own-adventure books when you were a kid? These stories would suck you right in, and you’d just have to discover each and every single possible ending, even if it took hours, right?
The folks at Visual Baker have created the equivalent for iOS. Underground Kingdom is a beautiful and entertaining “gamebook” for readers young and old, and features nearly two dozen different endings, animated illustrations and an interactive map that lets you chart your progress through the story. Click “more” for an overview.
Kobo is a Toronto-based company that makes devices and apps to improve your reading experience. The company holds a significant market share in the eReaders space and is already ahead of Amazon in many countries. It builds four different kinds of eReader devices and also maintains its own Kobo app which is supported in many different devices and platforms.
When I was growing up, there were a whole gamut of shows dedicated to making me a more educated child. Between Sesame Street, The Electric Company and Reading Rainbow, I had it all.
Today, as the father of a toddler, I want my son to have similar experiences. As it turns out, now there’s a Reading Rainbow iPad app, full of all sorts of games and activities designed to stimulate the mind of a young reader. But does it stand up to the TV show’s legacy? Let’s find out. (more…)
When I downloaded Moonbot Studios’ first production (The Fantastic Flying Books of Morris Lessmore) I was amazed at the combination of story, animation, and interactivity. Not only did I have fun with the app/book, but I was able to watch in wonder as my nephew flicked, tapped, and played his way through the app. He loved the book. I loved the book.
With The Numberlys, Moonbot Studios’ second offering, has the company hit a sophomore slump, or is this just as magical as the first experience with Morris Lessmore? Let’s find out.
I’ve been a Kindle user for a few years now. I love it, mostly because it’s great at one thing and one thing only: immersing yourself in reading. Everything from the screen, to the store, to the battery and the size, provides a perfect experience for reading books.
When I got my iPad, I didn’t know what would happen. Would I end up selling my Kindle and replacing it with my iPad, or would I end up using both. I think you can guess for yourself what happened. Here’s why…
How does the Kindle app measure up to the Kindle device? Taking into account the more obvious differences such as screen technology and greyscale/colour, has the function of the popular Kindle device been adequately matched or improved upon in the iPad app? What thought has gone into the function and usability of the application, and its interaction with the wider technological world?
Are there similar ways to configure the reading experience? Are all features supported across both platforms?
Let’s explore these areas a little…
Around 1440, Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press. The printed word was a rare and valuable commodity in his world, and few people could read the few books there were. Books were painstakingly copied by hand, and represented years of work in making each volume. Now, in a day, Gutenberg could print more than you could write by hand in a year.
Fast forward 440 years. The motion picture was just becoming a reality, before most people had even had their own photograph taken. Before long, the world’s favorite pastime took us away from books, keeping us instead glued to our screens. First movies, then broadcast TV, and now iTunes rentals on your iPad, all bringing the magic of videos into more of our lives.
Last year, Steve Jobs announced the iPad as the eBook reader that would stand on the shoulders of the Kindle, and push eBooks to the next level. While both iBooks and the Kindle apps have made reading a great experience on the iPad, most eBooks to date are either plain text without even the formatting we’d expect from a paper book, or huge image or PDF files that don’t scale well. Neither make the book substantially better than it has been for centuries.
Then Moonbot Studios came, and showed the world how the future of books and movies had changed.