We’ve gone on and on about the merits of Flowboard, a web-based platform that lets users easily create media-rich stories or presentations and publish them onto its servers. Until now, the service has only been available as an iOS app — but that’s about to change, as a Flowboard authoring app hits the Mac this spring.
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That statement up there in the headline, that Flowboard will be “the most important free app you download this month” — that’s kind of a bold thing to say.
But it’s not hyperbole; Flowboard’s publishing tools are super-easy to use, letting you easily create electronic portfolios and presentations — heck, even magazines and eBooks — and the finished products, published on Flowboard’s site, are just as easy to share and view.
And if you rarely download anything, well, this may be the most important free app you download all year.
News Corp. has announced that it will cease publication of The Daily on December 15, less than two years after the iPad-only newspaper made its debut. The company has said that “technology and other assets from The Daily, including some staff,” will be folded into its New York Post tabloid.
It’s not exactly hard to make a website these days, but Webr makes it just about as easy as could be. It’s a free iPhone app which lets you create and publish a website in just a couple of minutes, and it’s pretty impressive.
The TED organization, which sponsors a range of conferences and talks on cutting edge topics recently launched an ebook series known as TED Books. Like the non-profit’s other initiatives, TED Books are “designed to spread great ideas.” Sticking to that ideal, the organization is making the ebooks, which will be released every two weeks, available across a range of ebook platforms including the new TED Books app for iOS devices.
The move highlights one of the challenges about ebooks – the choice of merchant and platform. That’s a particular concern when it comes to Apple’s iBookstore because purchases can only be read on an iOS device.
I love having my photos on my iPad, but I hate using iPhoto to get them there. To be honest, I just hate iPhoto, along with its more complicated and even more sluggish cousin, Aperture. I use Lightroom, and up until last week I was exporting photos from there into iPhoto just to sync them. Not only was this a headache, but it was a waste of space.
Now, you can tell iTunes to sync any folder of photos to the iPad, but with a little bit of effort things can be made much more elegant. By setting up Lightroom correctly, we can have any changes to our photos mirrored to the iPad at the touch of a button, and the whole process is near-automatic.
Over the past two decades, WIRED has been looked at as one of the premier technology publications in the world. They’ve been churning out amazing tech content before some of our readers were born, yet they’re still going strong. The iconic inaugural issue of WIRED debuted in January 1993, but WIRED announced today that they are reissuing it on the iPad as a free download, filled with annotations and perspectives on how the magazine came about.
Hearst, the publishing conglomerate that includes several of the world’s largest magazine brands, sees a bright future of iPad and tablet editions. Duncan Edwards, CEO of Hearst Magazines International, delivered some surprising statements as to what that future will look like at this week’s World e-Reading Congress in London.
The most surprising statement was that Hearst doesn’t plan to include interactive content in its digital publications despite work done in the company’s little known App Lab and the belief that users will pay more for a digital edition. Edwards also described mix of devices used by Hearst digital subscribers. That mix is headed up by the iPad but with Barnes & Noble’s Nook platform right behind it.
Apple’s Newsstand feature wasn’t without controversy as the company rolled it out. Issues around Apple’s control of subscriptions as well as the company’s 30% cut of content sales were hotly debated last year. However, with Newsstand a hit, publishers (and Apple) are reaping $70,000 a day from it.
And, if publishing execs everywhere agree with The Economist’s CEO Andrew Rashbass, that controversy is dead and buried – and it’s other iOS digital distribution models that pose a threat to publishers.
Apple has announced some changes to the iBookstore today in an iTunes Connect letter to content publishers. Like the App Store, promo codes for iBooks can now be offered to iTunes users. Screenshots can also now be submitted for iBooks titles. This change follows the release of iBooks Author and Apple’s entrance into the digital textbook industry.