Software Concept Makes E-Books Behave More Like Real Books [Video Demo]



Here’s a cool concept video for page-turning techniques in ebooks, which rather puts the current offerings to shame.

It shows an e-book behaving much more like a paper book, thanks to new ways of recognizing finger taps and swipes.

With this system, you can quickly flip back the edges of pages to look at something you’ve already read, or flip forward to see how far it is to the end of this chapter. Things you’d do while reading on paper.

Here’s the video:

This concept was put together by the KAIST Institute of Information Technology in South Korea. There’s a little bit more about their current research projects on this web page.

Like the look of it? Would you like to see something like this in Apple’s iBooks app?

(Thanks to Steve Troughton-Smith for this one.)

  • Lito Lupena

    apple should buy this app!

  • Scot Mcphee

    do you want to know what the most annoying thing about ebooks is? proper scholarly referencing. they need to start using paragraph numbering, it’s only unambiguous way to it.

  • Ghassan Jaber

    that’s really awesome apple should take you

  • Ana Luiza Barbosa de Oliveira

    E-books are not paper books, they’re a different media, I really don’t care about these “wow! just like a paper book” interfaces…

  • MacRankin

    It looks like it has got some potential, but only up to a point. On the one hand it wants to mimic the way we may turn the pages of a real book, but unlike a real book we see that there is no text on the reverse side of this action.

    Paragraph numbering, colour highlighting, split-screen modes, Dropbox enhanced note-taking, and any other way that’s going to help peeps keep up with stuff.

  • Jonathan Ober

    There are a few things I found that I liked about this demo. The drawing the page number and the flipping fast is something I could use in books that I am using as reference guides, like learning HTML5 book I have where I find myself going back and forth in referencing past code, etc. When I am reading a book that I for funzies, I don’t find myself needing to page back and forth. I can see this being very helpful in the advent of the new ibooks textbooks, since it seems that page flipping is slower when there is more content/graphics on the pages.

  • talkingsense2012

    Oh please stop this ‘skeuomorphic’ design for designs sake. Why why why are companies wasting their time trying to make cutting edge ways of accessing information on touchscreen devices (and for any other device for that matter) look and work like their age-old analogue cousins. Why should accessing a book on a touch screen device look and work the same a real book. It’s pointless. Totally and utterly pointless. Sort of like Apple making the Address Book and iCal in Lion have leather graphics and stitching. It’s terrible.

    FYI: “A skeuomorph is a derivative object that retains ornamental design cues to a structure that was necessary in the original. Skeuomorphs may be deliberately employed to make the new look comfortably old and familiar, such as copper cladding on zinc pennies or computer printed postage with circular town name and cancellation lines. An alternative definition is “an element of design or structure that serves little or no purpose in the artifact fashioned from the new material but was essential to the object made from the original material.”

    Stop stop stop. We’re peddling backwards while moving forwards!

  • prof_peabody

    you mean … the most annoying thing for *you*

    everybody want’s different things

  • Andreas Sørensen

    I like the idea! not all of the functions/gestures seem practical, though I have seriously been missing some more functions/gestures when reading e-books myself. The functions/gestures right now are too liniar, which is good when reading a novel, but when browsing or referencing etc. then there could be more and better tools/gestures that don’t derive from a desktop system, but fits the profile of using a book. So stop bitching about this being a ‘skeuomorphic’ design, it’s a good exercise… You have to try a bunch of things before striking gold when developing for new technology – such as common use of touchscreens…

  • djrobsd

    Wow, bitter much?  Where’s the dislike button when we need it!   There are plenty of useful functions shown in that video that millions of consumers would love to have, regardless of whether they emulate a traditional book or not.  For example, being able to turn multiple pages at once, when I’m flipping through technical books or magazines I often want to flick through several pages at once to get to where I’m going.

  • djrobsd

    This is great, I love when people think outside the box and innovate something new for an existing and emerging standard.  While not everything shown would be useful to me, there are some functions I could really use.  If Apple, Kindle or Nook Touch adopt this, I would hope they will have a preferences panel where people can enable or disable the various things shown in the video.

  • CharliK

    It was created using Private APIs so they could argue they already own it. 

  • Ungenio

    But this is not related to ornamental design, but to user interface (human interface?). This may be generic, but we can argue that people not comfortable using the mouse have a better experience using their fingers on touch screen.

    Granted, not all the gestures showed here may be easy to comprehend, but others show potential and, I think, are insanely great. If I would have to choose one, I’ll go for fast page flipping using the bezel.

  • Ungenio

    Or license it, anyway.