Wargame Thoughts and Commentary

iBooks Author and iBooks 2

I followed the real-time reports on today's Apple meeting, and found it fascinating! It appears that Apple is positioning itself to upend and improve the textbook market as it has done film, tablets, music, and DTP. Textbooks that revise themselves! Your enitire stack of texts in a single tablet! Costs slashed to a far more reasonable level. It has the backing of Houghton-Mifflin, McGraw-Hill, and 90% of text publishers. (It will also greatly lessen the grip of large state Textbook panels-such as Texas-on the entire industry. Evolution might actually be discussed in Biology texts!)

Quite apart from that, the new iBooks Author software, which is free, is now available. I downloaded it and it is, indeed, a very intuitive and easy way to create original texts-even non-school texts- and it has DRM protection. Apple will also provide a new distribution network via iBooks that exactly parallels iTunes. This not required, and the books may be exported to other distribution channels if desired.

This is very BIG for wargame publication and other "small" population hobbies. Its usefulness should extend to journals and magazines. This is HUGE as it may bring back the hobby press ala MWAN and The Courier. My main complaint of venues on-line such as blogs and TMP is that the longer "Think Pieces" and historical articles of merit have largely disappeared-and we only get fan-boy commentary for one set of rules or another. In addition, the atmosphere of the on-line venues is often mean-spirited,uninformed, and not conducive to well argued thought. We had lost this valuable aspect of wargaming. This new software from Apple may be the precursor of great new possibilities, both new, and those that harken back to Table Top Talk, and Wargamer's Newsletter.

There is no doubt that Die Marching will be published, at least in part, by this method. I awill also look to converting Die Fighting and Zouave II to this format for an added option. More to follow as I work with this new software.