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Archives: May 2011

Author Scott Carney Talks eBooks

Journalist Scott Carney’s freshman book The Red Market, which is out on Harper Collins today, looks at the international network of organ brokers, bone thieves and child traffickers.

I caught up with the author for a feature interview on Media Bistro’s Avant Guild site. He spoke about reporting on the black market. In the interview called, Hey, How’d You Report on The Black Market and Live To Tell About It, Scott Carney?. “The trick is going into the interview empathizing with your subject and trying to see the world from their view,” he says in the interview. Avant Guild members can access the entire interview here.

Since his book is available as an eBook, I interviewed Carney about his thoughts on digital publishing for eBookNewser. Here is the interview.

EBN: What do you think of eBooks?

SC: Epublishing just might be the future–but maybe not. It is a very promising route forward that could change the way that we interact with media overall. There is one company that I think is particularly cutting edge called The Atavist, which was started by another Wired contributing editor named Evan Ratliff and a current New Yorker editor named Nick Thompson (who is now, officially a consultant on the project). They do feature stories, where a reader can download them like an iTunes song for like $1.99 for a really well researched story. Read more

Should Authors Charge For eBook Signatures?

Can authors make money for signing books? Possibly with a new eBook signing technology called InScribed Media from a company called Ironcutter Media. The platform will enable book retailers and publishers to add a digital signature at the point of check out.

Authors can sign the eBook using a small pen tablet, like a Wacom Bamboo pen tablet. They can either presign a digital file, which can be added to an eBook automatically at checkout, or the buyer can send a request to the book store or publisher for a personalized message, which the author can in turn respond to via email. The technology allows for publishers and bookstores to offer this autograph as a free service or they can charge for the digital John Hancock.

To me, the idea of buying a digital autograph seems a little impersonal and kind of defeats the warmness that going to a reading and getting a book signed adds to the reading experience. But then again, maybe it’s a good way for authors to make a little extra money.

What do you think?

ASUS to Launch Android Based Mobile + Tablet Combo: Padfone


ASUS has unveiled Padfone, its new smartphone and tablet combo, at the Computex. Padfone is a modular mobile package that uses an Android smartphone and a tablet it can dock into. Switching of display between the smartphone and the tablet is dynamic and the display on the phone expands itself seamlessly once connected to the tablet.  The launch is mere mockup for now and includes a 4.3-inch smartphone and a 10.1-inch tablet dock. ASUS hasn’t yet finalized the final dimensions and price of the eventual retail product.


Read more

Apple to Unveil iCloud, OSX Lion Next Week

Apple put out a short press release today and it has the tech blogs buzzing. Apple will be holding its Worldwide Developer’s Conference next week and it wants to make sure you’re paying attention.

Steve Jobs will be on hand to unveil iOS5, the next version of Apple’s mobile OS. The next major release of OSx will also be show off, and it looks like Apple will reveal its new cloud storage service, iCloud.

There are no details in the press release, just the names. But that’s enough for me to mark my calendar.

Protagonize.com Is Accepting Submissions

Protagonize.com, an online creative writing community, is now accepting submissions for short stories, poems, and other works. Writers can share their content to a community groups to collaborate on writing.

The Protagonize blog explains how to submit something to a group: “Use the Actions (formerly Options) menu on any story/poem or whatnot. You’ll see a new option entitled Add to or remove from group. Should be pretty self-explanatory. Groups that don’t allow submissions won’t be listed in the popup dialog.”

This is the last major feature to be launched before the site’s redesign goes live this summer.

San Francisco Chronicle Releases iPad App

Hearst Newspapers released an iPad app today for The San Francisco Chronicle.

Like other news apps, the SF Chronicle app features news, blogs, photos and columns from the newspaper, as well as 360 degree photos of landmark San Francisco buildings, all designed with the tablet in mind.

According to its listing in iTunes, the app is a “live edition” of the paper. This includes breaking news and updated traffic and weather reports.

Subscriptions cost $5.99 a month, or $59.99 a year. And you can test drive the app for free for a month.

Via Mac Observer.