After reading articles and watching screencasts about the iBook Author announcement today, I decided to spend 30 minutes to find out how easy the new authoring tool is to use.

Click here to download my “30 minute challenge” iBook for free (if you have an iPad).

In 30 minutes, I was able to:

  • paste in content from a previously written article
  • create a simple image slideshow
  • create a simple interactive quiz
  • record and embed an introductory video
  • create and then delete a couple of charts (display issues in the final version)
  • test via the Share>email as iPad option

I was excited to find out that you can freely distribute iBook Author creations beyond the iBookstore as long as you don’t charge for the content. This at least means that I can create classroom materials and sync, send, or download them to student devices. The downside of personal distribution is that when you update the book you will have to manually push the new version to all devices. ¬†An iBookstore distribution allows the new content to push to iPads automatically.

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