Insight and investigations from our expert reporters
Mark Egan’s special report “Dumping print, NY publisher bets the ranch on apps” focuses on one man who believes the end has come for printed books.
Since 1980, Nicholas Callaway has made the finest of design-driven books, building a publishing house and his fortune on memorable children’s stories and on volumes known for the fidelity of their reproductions of great art. But the quality of paper, ink and binding mean nothing to him now.
For Callaway, it’s all about apps — small applications sold in Apple’s App Store where books are enhanced beyond the mere text of e-books. In this cutting-edge new medium, cooks can clap hands to turn pages of an interactive recipe, a book about Richard Nixon can include footage of him sweating during presidential debates, a Sesame Street character can read a story out loud and, should your child get bored, the app can turn the tale into a jigsaw puzzle or a computerized finger-painting set.
As tablet sales soar in the coming years — experts are saying 82 million Americans will have one by 2015 — publishers face a tough decision. Margins are a lot higher on traditional hard cover printed books, even with the high cost of printing, shipping and dealing with returns. But as sales of e-books overtake print and consumers get used to books that feature more than just words, will it be possible to keep doing both?
By Alastair Sharp
University of Waterloo students looking for a bit of extra cash and some experience in the world of technology often end up spending a semester in the bowels of Research In Motion’s sprawling campus next door.
Waterloo, a university town an hour’s drive from Toronto where RIM built its empire at the entrance to its mine, is a technology hub and its main university is often referred to as either the MIT or Stanford of the north by proud Canadians, with good reason.
We stepped into the new new Media Universe for our report on Augmented Reality, creating our own app which will alert anyone using it (iPhone or Android-phones only so far) when they are near one of the new movers and shakers of the business. It wasn’t so hard — you can see how we did it here.
But for anyone who just wants an overview, here’s the contents of the layer we made and published through Hoppala (on a Firefox browser) and AR browser firm Layar. It’s our take on the movers and shakers in the AR industry, mainly linking to Twitter feeds, and Tarmo Virki is happy to learn of any updates. These entries are unadorned: