A year ago, Apple stood up and announced to the world a new piece of software called iBooks Author that had a strong emphasis on providing a tool to create interactive digital textbooks. The project was personally commissioned by Steve Jobs to re-invent the textbook. Is it worth the investment?
A year on, equipped with more battle scars and experience with the format, here at YUDU we feel very excited about the future of learning in the age of the tablet. The potential exists for students to engage with concepts and content in the way that suits them, not the other way around. If they like to learn from youtube, we can do that, if they like to test themselves with quizzes within each chapter, we can do that. If the teacher wants to keep track of how their students are progressing in different subjects, just by logging into an LMS, this can also be achieved. I think it is quite clear that we are at the start of something big in the education space, and the tech giants of today know it.
We believe that if you want to create a single interactive e-book product, that iBooks Author is the best tool out there to do so. Yes, there are many limitations to the software that Objective C coders would wince at, however, there are also many creative solutions that can be implemented to get around these issues.
Recently we worked with Oxford University Press’ ELT department to create a template design for some of their ELT readers. There are currently a couple of iBooks available to purchase from the iBookstore in the digital textbook section.
All About Space is available here: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/book/all-about-space/id570887430?mt=13
This title is specifically designed for the iPad screen and makes use of great in-built functionality such as glossaries, video, 3D modeling and audio. The books are designed to help language learners, so the layout and design of the titles are quite clean and simple. Also in each book, there are hidden surprises such as pop-out images. Please post below if you spot them!
Also, if you are reading our iBA creations, or have questions about this format and what it could do for your customers or students, we would love to hear from you! You can drop Laura a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
Soon we will be talking about the HTML widget and what you can do with this interesting feature. Stay tuned!