May 19th – iBooksGenerator

Yesterday we looked at a very popular Widget creator for iBooks Author, today we look at another one that doesn’t have as many widgets, but it’s much easier and faster to produce one.

May 19th – iBooksGenerator

iBooksGenerator is a simple website that does three widgets really well. With iBooksGenerator you simply copy the URL from YouTube, Vimeo or sign in to Google Maps and create a map with point of interest if desired (check out the video at the bottom of the page).  Like Bookry, you just need to play with and explore a little bit!

Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 12.44.17 PM
iBooksGenerator Home Page taken May 26th

Google Map Html Widget for iBooks Author from Francis Thomas on Vimeo.


May 18th – Bookry

So fresh of our “A Week With…” series with iBooks Author, I wanted to introduce you to two 3rd party apps for the HTML widget.  The first one we’ll focus on, in today’s post, is Bookry.

May 18th – Bookry

Bookry is a website with a free sign in, then a collection of options to modify and download a HTML5 Widget to place into your iBooks project.

Bookry is free to sign in, then you will search for the Dashboard, then the Widget Library to pick a Widget.  You’ll need to create a “book” to place the Widget in, but will be able to download later for your iBook project.  Then explore the options with the different Widgets, Save and Download then add into your iBooks Author project!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

It’s worth playing around with some of the options and downloading and installing them into your iBook – I found some pretty great one that work seamlessly.

May 17th – A Week With iBooks Author

So we’ve come to our final day, with a few 3rd Party applications to come, and we’ve covered the basics, making shapes, widgets (all 9) and importing text and styling it.  Today we look at the little things that matter – the page layout.

May 17th – A Week With iBooks Author

As we’ve worked so hard to insert shapes, text and widgets to fulfill the content part of our book, we’ve probably noticed the lines that pop-up whenever we are moving around the widget or image.  We might have noticed the numbers that appear in blue when we are moving paragraphs back and forth.

iBooks Author is built on a grid system that automatically treats everything like an object around it and give you the center of a page (width and height) or the relative distance to other objects in the area.  This is incredibly helpful as you are working towards getting everything nice and uniform to publish on the iBooks Library.

iBooks Author Gridlines

Realistically this is a skill that involves a lot of hands on activity to move and resize the text, images and widgets to get everything to fit on a page.  But once you’re done and everything is lined up 17px away from the side of the page, you have something to be truly proud of.

May 16th – A Week With iBooks Author

Alright! 5 days of iBooks down and 2 to go.  I hope that by now you’ve download the program and are thinking of a few projects to play around with!  Well today I hope to help you with that as we walk through styling and converting Word text to iBooks Author.

May 16th – A Week With iBooks Author

Over the past few days we’ve looked at Widgets and how they can make an iBook interactive.  Hopefully you were thinking to yourself: “This is great but I already have a novel typed up and I don’t want to type or copy and paste it again” – well you’re in luck, iBooks Author makes it easy to control formatting with their styling drawer.

First you can import a Microsoft Word document right into iBooks Author. Go to “Insert” on the Menu Bar and then “Insert Chapters From…” and select your Word document and how you want it put into your iBooks Document.

iBooks Author Import
The Westchester County Girl Scout requirements for a Computer Programming badge

Once imported, the formatting might be off due to difference of machine or Windows to Mac, plus iBooks Author has great formatting and styling options.  From here you can use the Styling Drawer (the blue paragraph symbol on the far left side) to open the drawer and select the style of your text.  Even though mine is simple, it still looks good -thanks to the pre-set styles.

iBooks Author Styling

May 15th – A Week With iBooks Author

Two days of Widgets down, one to go!  So far we’ve covered Gallery, Media, Interactive Image, Review, 3D, Scrolling Sidebar and Pop-Over, today we look at Keynote and HTML.

May 15th – A Week With iBooks Author

Keynote and HTML are just like the 3D option, you’re going to have to create something outside of iBooks Author and bring it in.  For Keynote its a little easier and for HTML it takes a learning curve for another program (which we will cover once this “week” is done).


The Keynote widget is great, you can easily embed the Keynote into your iBook and the reader can control the Keynote with animations built in.  A quick tip from : Richards: Put your Keynote in automatic play mode and the Keynote Widget turns into a GIF – this was a life saver.

iBooks Author Keynote Widget
Once you’ve added the Keynote, your Mac will open Keynote to convert the file, I paused for that!


HTML is a Widget that is HTML5 web clips or my new best friend: Bookry (post coming soon).  HTML has amazing possibilities, ones that I hope to explore, but for now I used Bookry to create HTML5 Widgets and place them in the iBook, nothing to fancy… yet.

iBooks Author HTML Widget

Editing Widgets:

One thing I forgot to mention.  All of the Widgets are this light gray color, but with the Inspector window you can select different colors, fonts and other stylistic choices.  Have fun!

iBooks Author Modify Widget

May 14th – A Week With iBooks Author

Day 2 of Widget work with iBooks Author.  Yesterday we did: Gallery, Media, and Interactive Images.  Today we focus on slightly more interactive widgets.

May 14th – A Week With iBooks Author

Yesterday was just watching, today is clicking and interacting with text.  We’ll take a look at Review, 3D, Scrolling Sidebar, and Pop-Over.


Review is a simple quiz embed in the book to “review” what you’ve read.  Very simple to put in the questions (with multiple formats) and then review.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


3D objects come in many file extensions, but you’ll need to use “.dae” or COLLADA file.  Place the 3D placeholder on the page and select the .dae file in the Inspector window.  The tricky part is to interact with it you’ll need to check it out in preview mode.  You’ll need to create the 3D object in another program like SketchUp.

iBooks Author 3D Widget
The 3D house was previously created

Scrolling Sidebar:

The scrolling sidebar is a great tool for added text, but you don’t want a full page.  You can add the Widget then type inside and drag and drop a picture in.

iBooks Author Scrolling Widget


Pop-Over is a picture that has a caption pop out with more information.  Much like the the Scrolling Sidebar, just an added way to add text to a page without making another page.

iBooks Author Pop Out Widget

May 13th – A Week With iBooks Author

For the third day of our iBooks Author study we’ll start looking at Widgets.  These are one of the most powerful tools that iBooks Author has so I’ll spend a few days in a few different parts going over these.

May 13th – A Week With iBooks Author

There are 9 widgets: Gallery, Media, Review, Keynote, Interactive Image, 3D, Scrolling Sidebar, Pop-Over, HTML.

I’ll do this in 4 days, grouping some similar widgets together, but really all the widgets have separate purposes.


The Gallery is just a collection of pictures that you can add captions to and the user can scroll through or select a certain “dot” to go to a specific one.  Simply drag and drop the images you want on top of the widget (once added) and iBooks Author will add them.  To change the order look to the “Inspector” floating window and drag to the desired order.

iBooks Author Gallery Widget


The media is very similar (actually the same) as the Gallery where you can drag a video on top of the widget (after added to page) and use the “Inspector” floating window to adjust the poster image and other options. Note: it takes a few minutes to process the video so I skipped to an already processed Media Widget.

iBooks Author Media Widget

Interactive Image:

The Interactive Image widget is very cool.  You can drag and drop a larger image on the widget, then set the zoom level.  Once you’ve set the zoom level, you can click and add zoom points that will have adjustable zooms (that you’ll set again) when you can zoom into a picture.

iBooks Author Interactive Widget