I’ve known Renita for a while now. Originally from America, Renita now lives in Wigtown, which the book town in Scotland, with the most stunning views across the estuary. When I’ve performed at the festival, the children have all been whipped up to a frenzy by Renita, who welcomes them in and “settles them down” [...]
There are one or two technical improvements which you probably won’t notice, but now the app comes with a choice of babies!
For a start there are girls and they all come in pinkish, brownish and yellowish shades, so they should appeal to a wider, international market.
If you’ve got this on your phone already upgrade now. If you haven’t – why not!?
At last! My hard work has paid off and my first App – SweetLittleBabyBoo! – is now ready for sale at the iTunes store.
Along with this, I’ve started SweetLittleBaby.Com, as I’m planning a whole range of baby and toddler apps, which I will bring out under the SweetLittleBaby name.
Below is a video introducing my App, which babies ( and adults and children of all ages seem to be entranced by!)
It’s cheap! A mere 59 pence or 99 cents to bring a little bit of happiness into a baby’s life. (It often helps to clean, change, feed and burp as well!)
If you would like to play with an online version, then go to SweetLittleBaby.Com and sign up for my newsletter – I’ll then send you the address where you can see the app working online. Have fun!
Many of you who have followed my career will know that I’ve been playing with online and interactive stories for a long time. Once eBooks and apps got going, I kind of felt that I’d been there and done that. The one thing I’d learned was that there was no future in it for authors. eBooks are too easy to copy and pirate. It’s just not worth doing the work – except for the age-old reason of vanity. I’m trying to make a living!
But the iPad has made me look at things differently. I’m amazed how visceral is some of the criticism that gets hurled at Apple and the iPad. This comes from those who don’t want to pay for other people’s hard work, from tekkies who want to be able to fiddle about with your machine and fill it full of their code, like dogs weeing on lamp posts.
Those who love iPads – and boy do they love them – don’t want updates going on in the background. They don’t want anyone having control of their machine, changing the settings while they’re asleep. They want to be able to switch on and instantly get to grips with the job in hand – and that is what the iPad does, uncomplainingly, every time you swipe it on. It’s fast efficient and faithful.
And it doesn’t have Flash. That is THE main criticism – constantly repeated by those who don’t really know what Flash is. I’ve had an iPhone for about three years and I’ve not missed Flash at all. I used to be Flash’s greatest evangelist, but I get completely why Apple say no. Besides, HTML5 will soon do most of the things people miss from Flash.
I’m now using Flash to build my first iPhone App – That’s the only way you will get your Flash onto an iPhone or iPad. The coding in Flash as you experience it on the web makes it a competing operating system that allows anyone to do anything they like to your machine. People pay a premium for iPads precisely because it doesn’t have Flash and so stays as a safe as possible from outside interference.
As for ebooks, well, there is not a eBook reader yet that handles children’s picture books, where the text and pictures are so closely related, but the ipad app is perfect – which is why primary schools are beginning to swap to iPad. Easy to maintain, easy to use, transport and teach with, and a wonderful medium for Children’s books.
Having tried for so long and almost given up, I now have Shakespeare’s words of Julius Caesar ringing around my head:
There is a tide in the affairs of men
Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;
Omitted, all the voyage of their life
Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
On such a full sea are we now afloat,
And we must take the current when it serves,
Or lose our ventures.
These are very interesting times!
On Friday, the iPad 2 was launched in Europe. I was in Nice and saw the Queues snaking around the Cap 3000 shopping mall, as people tried t get their hands on one. so I thought I’d do a little video to show you how to draw one.
As a full-time author, it’s hard not to spend large parts of the day contemplating the future of publishing. These are indeed interesting times. Ebooks are finally beginning to make an impact on the public consciousness if not their pocketbooks – yet.
But eBooks are coming, make no mistake about it. Where does that leave me? When I started out, gentlemen publishers were still around. They would make up their mind about a book on the spot and would often have the contract in the post the next day. Now that’s what I call doing business! It was fun, but things changed.
As each of my publishers were bought out, I tended to follow my editors, as that was where my loyalties lay. They moved, the publishers they moved to were taken over, and again they moved on until there was nowhere left to move on to.
All the little publishers became parts of the giants until there are now really only a handful of mega corporate trade and general publishers left. New publishers start out with the intention of selling out when they can.
So what will happen next?
I recently had a vision of a possible future. You could say that Google and Amazon are making the edges between distributers and publishers a bit fuzzy – Google with Youtube and Google Books, Amazon with the Kindle. These two organisations will soon realise that distribution is not enough if the other begins to own the rights to the content.
When these two go head to head, there is going to be a bloodbath! The rights to all the copyrighted content in the world will be bought up as they slog it out, buying up publishers and their rights.
Of course there is also Apple sitting quietly on the sidelines… they are sitting on a huge mountain of cash. The ipad and the iStore are brilliant distribution systems waiting to be fully exploited. How soon before Apple, Google or Amazon make their first bid to buy Pearson or Hachette? Not long, I predict.
And what stupid politician is going to stand in the way of the juggernauts, holding their hands up and blathering about monopoly? None.
What do you reckon?
Is it just me or are those guys on the adobe launch programme really boring?
It’s probably me. I got involved with CS5 way back when Flash was called FutureSplash – those were exciting days. Flash hasn’t really moved on from there in all that time. Well not the Flash that I use – it’s a brilliant drawing tool and the drawing tools have hardly been touched in years. If anything, some tools have got worse. Illustrator just doesn’t have that intuitive drawing feel to it.
Flash has become a tool for programmers and developers. What’s needed is a something like Flash that is just a drawing tool that can then be imported into Flash for the geeks to play with. (No, not Illustrator)
I also use Photoshop and inDesign and occasionally Dreamweaver, but only to cut and paste simple code.
I have to admit that Photoshop’s new Content Aware eraser is eye-poppingly incredible as is the Puppet tool. Do not believe a single thing you see from now on! But somehow, I’m uderwhelmed by that too. It’s almost as if I’ve become so jaded that I feel “well, it’s about time, what took them so long?” Once, everything new in software was mind-blowing
now it’s just – great.
What I was really interested to see was the Flash export to iPhone and iPad. But when you look at it, this promise is hedged about with disclaimers. There is a massive grudge match going on between Adobe and Apple and I don’t want to get mashed up in the middle, so all the ideas I’ve been having recently based on the rumours and sneak peaks of CS5 can go into the bottom draw and I can get on with trying to make a living in the real world. That will save me a bit.
All this digital developing business has got so out of hand. It ain’t fun anymore. The geeks and the bean-counters have taken over and spoiled it all for everyone – as usual. Bring back simple, hand-knitted html websites!
Oh yeah… the CS5 image and design suck. If that’s all they can do with the new tools…