With the holidays coming up you might find yourself trapped in a family gathering that is comprised largely of people talking non-techno gibberish. While it might be perfectly normal for others to talk about “mondaine” things like ‘the game thats on tonight’ or whichever of the babes in America’s next Top model was so skinny she blew off camera on a windy day .. there is only so much you might be able to take. So time for some technological infusions into your audio-phonic subsystems. In laymen’s terms : Time for a couple of good podcasts to pull you through the holidays. Over the next week we will introduce you to 5 different podcasts you should subscribe to (aside from ours of course). We shall try to tap a variety of topics and interests but will vouch for its quality and consistency. We can however only partially vouch for your sanity or domestic peace at the christmas dinner once we are done.
Our first selection is a freshly rebooted podcast by friend of the show Daniel “The cyberpunk librarian” Messer on being a writer using open source tools. Aside from being cross platform geek using a variety of operating system, Daniel has also written several books and has mastered the art of using open source tools to produce his literary escapades. Episode 1 of his recently rebooted podcast describes the use of open source software to pound that brilliant idea into a literary novel that is ready to publish using only open source software. Be quiet while listening to this podcast and refer from talking, shouting and walking around .. this man is a librarian .. remember ?
Download and subscribe.
You can find the website to subscribe (along with the most evil of all podcast avatar selfies) over at http://cyberpunklibrarian.com/podcast/
On the very end of the year we give you a preview of the upcoming book “On the Edge” that is about to be published by Knightwise.com. In this weeks storytime we read 3 stories from the book all centered around the very absence of technology. Chill out and enjoy this episode and don’t forget you can get your hands on an advanced signed digital copy of the book by sending a donation our way. Sit back, Relax .. its Storytime.
One of the things that is pretty tricky about blogging, is that its actually “writing in disguise”. Sure we write up a post every day and all in all it doesn’t seem to add up to much text in the end (because you ADD junkies don’t have the attention span to finish an entire paragraph without rushing outside to ride shiny bikes) but still : If i where to bundle the 900+ articles on this site in a book.. that would be pretty nifty .. Right ?
But the task of preforming this epic contribution to mankind requires the right software and .. Word sure ain’t it. I shiver when I think back of the days where I had to write my paper in word. Hoping desperately that that single hard return wouldn’t mess up my layout 76 pages down the hill.. You know the scene. However ! With iBooks Author you no longer have that excuse anymore. Apple’s new update of its toe-dabbing into the world of creative writer software has just gotten an fancy update. In short : iBooks author was made for making schoolbooks and textbooks filled with interactive content. Think of adding interactive slideshows, pictures, movies and more to a text document and really making ti pop. This of course would make all these different functionalities available only to iPad users (Apple do plans to take over the world you know) and the other major downside is that the initial edition of iBooks author was geared towards educational books.
This would be fine and great if your lifelong ambition is to become a Math book author .. just great .. but luckily you are a little cooler then that. So Apple put a bunch of new themes in this version of iBooks author that let you make more then just a boring textbook.
But here are some suggestions, with the holidays coming up and all that :
If you have friends and family that have an iPad ? Use iBooks author to make an interactive foto and video album. Just put the finished ibook up on dropbox and shoot them the link ! They will be able to download the book and open it in iBooks without having to connect to iTunes.
Surf around the net and bundle your kids favorite bedtime stories, look on Flickr for the coolest illustrations and make your own interactive bed-time story for the toddler (complete with music , slideshows and moving pictures)
Use iBooks author to write technical documentation and add weblinks , video’s and slideshows for those friends, family members and co-workers who “just don’t get it” when you try to explain it to them.
Bundle up your favorite blog items, stories and more .. and bundle them in a book. Export as ePub or PDF format and be your own publisher. Why not make it a digital scrapbook by adding some multimedia content.
Who ever said this years holiday card needed to be on paper. Dive into iBooks, add family fotos, sing a carol together and plop the file on the net !
iBooks Author is available in the app store for free and exports to both iBook and ePub format. Most of the interactive features are only available in the iBook export format and adding a lot of videocontent does make it a hefty file. But thanks to iBooks you will be able to go where no Word, Pages or Publisher .. has gone before.
A long time ago, when podcasting was still young, I found out about a writer who was nuts. This author, instead of just writing his book, decided to narrate every chapter and publish it as a podcast BEFORE the book got published. The first book – podcast series he did was called “infected” about a young football player who is infected by an alien spore that turns him violent. A vivid memory in my imagination is getting goosebumps all over as I was listening to one very well written graphical scene in the book .. while the actual outside temperature was 30 degrees C. Telling you about the books and about the author is pointless. You just have to listen to some of the books. Earthcore, Infected, Contaigon, Ancestor, Nocturnal … these titles are not only available as books and ebooks but also as free audio podcasts .. That you cannot miss out on. Scott is a master in reading his on work, getting the voices of every character just right .. Scaring the crap out of any listener an entertaining you for hours. Find them HERE. (and if you dare : watch the video interview with the dark overlord himself)