Posts Tagged Books

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It is now Summer, what a wonderful time, so I bring you news, that will mostly rhyme.

Oceanhouse Media want kids to read, whilst home this season, so thus there’s a sale, if you needed a reason. Over twenty apps, now cheaper to get, most down a dollar, others further yet. They’re about science concepts, aimed at ages five to eight, featuring the Cat in the Hat, which is pretty great. They’ll teach your kids, whilst they rhyme, which is pretty impressive, doing both at the same time.

The list of apps can be found below, just in case you wanted to know:

learninglibrarysale2

Books

Collections

Netwars – The Butterfly Attack Review

Netwars – The Butterfly Attack Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Incorporating interactive elements and promising new forms of media to explore, Netwars - The Butterfly Attack is an interesting take on the interactive graphic novel.

Read The Full Review »
bookkeep Review

bookkeep Review

iPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad
Its simplicity is both its strength and its weakness, but Bookkeep will be a handy companion for avid readers not fussed about wanting to share what they're reading with others.

Read The Full Review »
SHERLOCK: Interactive Adventure Review

SHERLOCK: Interactive Adventure Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
A classic murder mystery with plenty of interactive content; what more could one want from a story?

Read The Full Review »
The Great Photo App Review

The Great Photo App Review

iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Teaching the fundamental basics to photography and busting some tricky jargon, The Great Photo App is a useful starting point for the most inexperienced of photographers.

Read The Full Review »
Robotslayer – Volume 1 Review

Robotslayer – Volume 1 Review

iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Some text issues aside, Robotslayer - Volume 1 tells an entertaining story of when good robots go very bad.

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Blinkist Review

Blinkist Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Blinkist will be right up the alley of anyone who has ever enjoyed SparkNotes as a kid.

Read The Full Review »
A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving Review

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
The classic TV special comes to the iPad in storybook form, and it's lovely.

Read The Full Review »
Niko and the Sword of Light Review

Niko and the Sword of Light Review

iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Combining various forms of media, Niko and the Sword of Light is a comic book like no other.

Read The Full Review »

Marvin Review

iPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad
Marvin offers a fantastic reading experience for those who regularly view DRM-free eBooks.

Read The Full Review »
Book: Free-to-Play: Making Money From Games You Give Away
Author: Will Luton
Price: $12.99

photoI just finished reading Will Luton’s new book, Free-to-Play: Making Money From Games You Give Away. It’s a $12.99 purchase in the iBooks store, making it a better deal than, say, the current paperback version, at $21.38 over on Amazon.

The book is a healthy roundup of what makes free-to-play (F2P) games tick, with sections on the economics, gameplay, monetization, marketing, and analytics–the underpinnings of any successful free-to-play game on any app store.

The examples he uses within the book are Farmville, naturally, Dungeons and Dragons Online, and Bejeweled Blitz. In this way, Luton is able to illustrate his points with concrete examples from real world games that use the principles within.

The author believes that free-to-play games are a win/win proposition, letting developers quickly and inexpensively release games that have a chance of making some money, and letting players who wouldn’t typically touch a $60 console “gamers’ game” experience fun for no money down. It’s a delightful ideal, and I hope most, if not all, developers take it to heart: free-to-play games should be good games first, and monetization engines second. Luton continues to make this point throughout the book, though the message tends to get lost in the discussion of variable reward schedules (the same type of reinforcement schedule slot-machines are built on) and how to analyze key performance indicators.

As a non-developer, I did get lost within the many industry acronyms and other such jargon, but Luton does a good job of helping the novice reader get through it all. The title is clear: this is a book on making games that make money, and the information between the front cover and end flap is focused on that part of game making.

The level of depth and detail that Luton brings to the explanation of how free-to-play games work is astonishing. While the gameplay section, for example, tends to focus on player retention, play sessions, and triggers to keep your players coming back rather than actual game mechanics, it’s an interesting read nonetheless. I’ve definitely increased my understanding of what a complex achievement successful free-to-play games have attained.

I’d highly recommend this book to anyone who develops games for iOS or other mobile platforms, as well as readers and writers who want to get a better grasp on the breakout phenomenon of the free-to-play genre. Luton has created a fantastic resource, here.

The book Free-toPlay: Making Money From Games You Give Away, by Will Luton, can currently be found on the iBooks store for $12.99.

instaPress – Create Your Own Books From Web Pages, PDFs, or Word Docs

Posted by on May 20th, 2013
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

instaPress allows you to create your own books from word docs, PDF files, and web pages. Once created, books can be ordered through the app in quality hardcover or softcover formats and shared as eBooks with family and friends.

instapress

The Thirty-Nine Steps Review

The Thirty-Nine Steps Review

iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Capturing the intrigue and mystery of the original book, The Thirty-Nine Steps is a visual and aural feast for interactive novel fans.

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Sci-Fi Library Review

Sci-Fi Library Review

iPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad
Fans of the genre can easily keep tabs on their favorite books, as well as over 100 Science Fiction and Fantasy books preloaded.

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Too Far Review

Too Far Review

iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Weaving an interesting tapestry of text, art and music, Too Far is an interesting way of making a novel come to life.

Read The Full Review »
Comics Unlimited Review

Comics Unlimited Review

iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Offering users both a free way to read comics and a subscription service, Comics Unlimited is a fun package of reading material.

Read The Full Review »
Underground Kingdom Review

Underground Kingdom Review

iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Interactive fiction from the 1970s that is just as strong as it was before.

Read The Full Review »
Coin & Flour Alpha Issue Review

Coin & Flour Alpha Issue Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
The interface lets it down but Coin & Flour tells the start of an interesting story of a mismatched couple.

Read The Full Review »
Audiobooks HQ Review

Audiobooks HQ Review

iPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad
Audiobooks HQ gives users access to over 5300 audiobooks, comprising of many of the great classics over the years.

Read The Full Review »
Wine Simplified Review

Wine Simplified Review

iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Doing exactly what the name suggests, reference guide Wine Simplified deciphers the myths and confusions about choosing what wine to buy. It's a handy resource.

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Emanata Comics Review

Emanata Comics Review

iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Discover new and emerging comic book artists through this iPad-optimized app. Comic book fans will particularly love it.

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Strøssel Review

Strøssel Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Simple and clean to look at, Strøssel offers plenty of interesting stories gathered from around the internet, wrapped up in an attractive package.

Read The Full Review »
Business Plan For Entrepreneurs’ Startups Review

Business Plan For Entrepreneurs’ Startups Review

iPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad
It might not win any prizes for its looks but Business Plan For Entrepreneurs' Startups is a great resource for those starting their own business.

Read The Full Review »

This Week at 148Apps: September 10-14

This week at 148Apps.com, everything was about – what else? – the iPhone 5. Site founder and all-around iPhone guru Jeff Scott provided some much-needed advice for anyone interested in switching carriers when upgrading: “So you, like many, have decided to switch carriers with the iPhone 5? You could go data only but perhaps you still need the phone part of the iPhone. Let’s say for instance you are tired of the customer-hostile management at AT&T and want to move to Verizon. Just, you know, as an example.

Let’s rundown what you will need to make the switch and any pitfalls you might hit. It’s a fairly simple process, but there are some things you should know first, before starting.”

Read all of Jeff’s great advice at 148Apps.com.

Meanwhile, GiggleApps headed to the Great White Way, courtesy of Amy Solomon’s review of Broadway Barks: “Broadway Barks is a lovely interactive story, written, narrated and sung by Tony-winning actress Bernadette Peters, based on the previously published children’s book with CD of the same name. Versions for both iPhone as well as iPad are available.
This is a cute and charming story of a dog who no longer has a home and is all alone in the park until he is discovered and given a chance to be seen at Broadway Barks – a charity event in New York City to promote the adoption of animal, ultimately finding a new home.”

Read the full review at GiggleApps.com.

$3.99
iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Released: 2012-07-20 :: Category: Books

Finally, 148Apps.biz featured a how-to for creating a better mobile app from Prince Arora: “You just came up with a great idea for a mobile app or you are working on a new feature to add in your existing app. You have laid out all the screens, primary & secondary actions, and interaction flow in your head and you get down to write the code.

Great! However, this scenario is the same as starting to build a house without a blueprint. Wireframes are like blueprints and visual design is like interior decoration for an app.

So before you start writing code, work on a blueprint — this includes writing down the features/user stories, designing the flow charts, defining the primary & secondary action and designing the wireframes. These sounds like a lot but I’ll walk you through each step to show you how simple it can be.”

Read all of the steps at 148Apps.biz.

And that, my friends, brings us to the end of a very busy and exciting week. Stay abreast of the latest news, reviews and contests by following us on Twitter and Liking us on Facebook, and be sure to meet me back here next weekend for a rundown of what you might have missed. See you next week!

This Week at 148Apps: August 20-24

This week at 148Apps.com, Carter Dotson asked the question that so many iPad owners have thought to themselves: “Why can’t I work from just my iPad?”

“I’m sick of desktops, laptops, and netbooks. The iPad is lightweight, has great battery life, and I don’t have to take it out of my bag when I’m flying. Most of the work that I do is writing, covering iOS and Android, so it seems appropriate to primarily do this work from mobile devices, right? That’s what I want, but there’s still just so many shortcomings that keep it from being a regular reality.

“What I find is that for basic tasks, the iPad is great. I like the focus that the iPad’s limitation of running a single app on screen at a time provides, especially for writing. I use a portable Bluetooth keyboard, and while it’s not full-size, the benefits I get from being forced to focus on what I’m writing is a huge benefit. As well, with the customer support job I work with that uses Zendesk, I discovered that it’s actually quite easy to do it efficiently through Safari and the Zendesk mobile app. I didn’t feel like I was any less productive in working from the iPad than I do when I work from my Mac in this case. But it’s the exception to the rule.”

Read more of Carter’s home-to-work manifesto at 148Apps.

Meanwhile, Amy Solomon at GiggleApps.com took a trip to the zoo via ABC ZooBorns: “My son, a fan of these other apps, was excited to hear about ABC ZooBorns, asking me about a list of his favorite animals, all of which are included – much to my son’s excitement. I too enjoy the list of animals included – be it more traditional zoo animals, such as tigers or zebras, but also including some unique choices such as Ural owl, wombat or quokka. We do love to look at these animals as babies, especially those are simply precious to look at such as baby Gorillas or Elephants.”

Read Amy’s complete review at GiggleApps.com.

$2.99
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Released: 2012-07-24 :: Category: Education

Finally, AndroidRundown.com featured a story about a fascinating new KickStarter project named InstaCube. Joseph Bertolini writes, “It streams photos directly from any user’s Instagram account and displays them on a large 6.5″ LCD touchscreen. Display those photos from the park yesterday or randomly check in on some friends, because what good are those photos if they are stuck on a tiny phone screen all the time. Probably the greatest element of InstaCube is its ability to stay away from being one dimensional by including full access to Instagram. Doing this allows for photo browsing, ‘liking’ of photos, and InstaCube will even display live photos of sunrises and sunsets from around the world.”

Sound intriguing? Read more about it at AndroidRundown.com.

Summer’s heading to a close, but we still have so much more to offer across the 148Apps network. Keep track of all the latest happenings, as well as reviews and contests, by following us on Twitter or liking us on Facebook. You’ll be glad you did.

Seven Poets Review

Seven Poets Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Seven Poets offers a form of real-time fiction we haven't seen before, plus it's serialized to keep you gripped for longer.

Read The Full Review »

Lately, there seems to be a Kickstarter project for everything imaginable. One new exciting project is Underground Kingdom.

The project aims to adapt the work of author Edward Packard, namely his Choose Your Own Adventure books made popular in the 1970s. These books have proved very important to many in the past, myself included, both encouraging literacy and demonstrating how much fun reading can be.

Much like the work of Tin Man Games, Choose Your Own Adventure books are all about taking part in an interactive story and making decisions that lead to many different inclusions.

Underground Kingdom isn’t quite under way yet, hence the Kickstarter project. While I for one greatly encourage getting involved with backing the project, we thought it only right to check in with co-founder and project director Felipe Mingo and creator of the Choose Your Own Adventure books Edward Packard and see how they feel about things.

We asked Felipe about the motivation behind bringing back this series of books.

“In (our) search for an app idea,” he explained, “we remembered the Choose Your Own Adventure series. We really loved these books as kids, and thought that it would be great to transport the concept of “gamebooks” to digital. When we looked for digital versions, we didn’t find any quality apps that would deliver a great experience. We wanted something different, with contemporary artwork, interaction, a map to guide your path… That’s when we decided to start working on it and contacted Edward, who was really helpful and licensed us some of his books.”

Asking whether the books, starting with Underground Kingdom, will be original conversions or if there will be any adjustments, Felipe explained that “The adaptations of the story are completely original from Edward Packard books. We made some minor changes to the text so it would adapt to today’s technology. The artwork is totally new.” As you can see from the artwork below, it’s pretty glorious to look at and a great re-imagining of the original’s style.

Edward Packard explained to us that he believes the “imaginative color art and animations…greatly enrich the adventurous experience” while also stating that he’s “delighted, and especially so about delivering them in app form,” as well as the “added interactive features [and] sound effects”.

While the project is still in the early stages, Visual Baker provided us with some examples of concept art and how the devs there plan to incorporate the feel of Choose Your Own Adventure books into app form. It’s looking pretty great, so far.

If you’re keen on backing the Kickstarter, check out the Underground Kingdom project page for details of pledge amounts available.

Strange Loves 1: Vampire Boyfriends Review

Strange Loves 1: Vampire Boyfriends Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
A bright idea for an interactive story but one that doesn't quite hit the spot, unless you're a teenager.

Read The Full Review »

The hugely popular The Simpsons Bongo Comics have made their way to the iPhone and iPad, with an official app just released.

Simpsons Comics comes from the masters of all things iOS comic book related, ComiXology.

Much like ComiXology’s other apps, the initial download is free with new issues of The Simpsons based comics available, priced between $1.99 and $3.99. Recent and classic Bongo titles are included such as Simpsons Comics, Bart Simpson and Radioactive Man.

New Bongo comics will be available for purchase through the app within a month of their physical publication, with readers able to buy and download at least two digital releases a week, if they so wish.

Recommendations will also be available after finishing each comic book, so it’s an ideal way to steer new readers in the right direction for plenty of fun with Homer and the family.

Simpsons Comics is available now and it’s an Universal app.

FREE!
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Released: 2012-07-12 :: Category: Books

The Assassin’s Creed franchise has been phenemonally successful since the release of the first game in the series 5 years ago. It has spawned numerous new games, for PC, console and iOS, novelizations and even the rumor of a forthcoming movie. The tales of Ezio Auditore have now spawned a spin-off comic book in the form of new app Assassin’s Creed The Fall.

Assassin’s Creed The Fall follows the story of assassin Nikolai Orelov, providing a completely different look into the Assassin’s Creed Universe. The stunning artwork and writing comes courtesy of DC Comics artists Karl Kerschl and Cameron Stewart so readers are guaranteed quality throughout. With easy to browse navigation designed specifically for the iPad, it should prove to be a great hit for comic book fans and fans of the game series.

Assassin’s Creed The Fall is out now and priced at $0.99 for the first past. The subsequent two parts are purchasable for $2.99.

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