Well it’s been a fun past month following the release of CartoonSmart’s first book (specifically MY first book). Sales were great the first couple weeks, thanks of course, to all of you loyal readers. And they are still good from what appears to be some natural iBookstore traffic (people not coming from CartoonSmart). Good enough at least, that I’ll definitely be writing some follow-up tutorials in the same format.
I’ve realized for many years the importance of being able to search for specific terms with CartoonSmart’s programming tutorials. The art tutorials don’t need much of a Glossary because the training is more about technique. The iBook / PDF format obviously solves the problem of not being search-friendly.
My dilemma for future books really comes down to finding the perfect length and size of the content. I can’t spend half a year writing 400-plus page books.Well I could, but it’s quite resource-draining (me, being the resource). Obviously shorter books are possible, and if the price is right, I don’t think anyone minds a 100 page training book because that’s still pretty substantial. So the real question is the size, because I know for those of you purchasing on your iPads, the capacity is limited. Granted, the iBooks are cloud-based, so you can delete and re-download as often as you want if you need to free up capacity, but let’s ignore that for a second.
Indulge me with a poll regarding the ideal size of an iBook. Granted, its really just the videos within the book that take up the most space. So figure 30-40 minutes of video is about 100 MB. And if you don’t care about the size, just check off 500MB, because that’s realistically the most I would do anyway.
Just heard from my amigo in all things Cocos2d, Steffen Itterheim (he is also the author of Kobold2D, which we will talk more about on this blog). His very cool Line Drawing Game Starter Kit is currently half off it’s regular price for the first 100 people to get in on this deal….
She’s finally ready! My first book! I mean CartoonSmart’s first book. Ah, heck, I am CartoonSmart. The machine and me are one (wait, isn’t that from Iron Man?) =)
If you want more of a preview you can click below, or if you’ve been waiting months upon months for this, here’s the link to it in the iBookstore. The book is 413 pages AND counting. I can add more to this at anytime, and past buyers will get notified in their iBook app that there’s an update. YUP! That’s the future of books, folks. Always update-able! It might not make sense for Stephen King, but for code authors it’s pretty darn perfect.
Also for anyone lucky enough to be using an iPad 3 or newer, the images are Retina display-ready, so they look pretty darn beautiful. Even that fugly green-haired looking punk kid eating onion rings looks polished.
I hope you enjoy it! Oh and the first 4 chapters (122 pages) are FREE! So you can definitely try before you buy.
I saw two new trailers for zombie movies today (World War Z and Warm Bodies), so The Universe must be telling me it’s time to release the Zombies Assembled tutorial! This is 3 hours of Photoshop fun with Justin Cook (our prolific Toon Boom instructor).
Luke Carelsenjust sent me a link to his newly approved FREE app. Here’s some features pasted in from his metadata in the App Store…
• 50 books from the bible have been selected to teach your child the word of God.
• 131 pages that are beautifully illustrated to each specific story.
• An animated voice reads every page with much enthusiasm
• There are interactive features in this app and we will have regular updates adding more features and more animations
Looks great Luke!! Congrats on the bounty of first-day In-App sales!
Let’s show off some student work first. These come from a long time learner, Dallas Prichard, who develops under the company name Studio 327. His most recently approved app is a fantastic twist on a maze game. You modify the maze while a mouse auto-navigates it’s way through it. That one is called Wind-Up Maze HD.
Dallas also created a memory match game. I’m sure we all remember those from our childhood. This one is called Magic Memory Match, and that title got the app REJECTED initially! Hmmm, what is so inflammatory about that title? Abbreviated to “MMM”? No, that’s harmless. Turns out a company in Germany has a copyright on the word “Memory” being used in the title of a game. Yipes, pretty broad copyright eh. The solution: This game is NOT available in Germany! What’s most interesting though is that Apple caught this. I would think for a more-obscure international copyright like that, this wouldn’t be noticed until the holder said something.
Onto CartoonSmart news. I’m in the final stages of finishing my Cocos2d and Xcode iBook. I’ve just updated the free version, with ( hopefully ) most of my dumbest mistakes corrected. I’ll leave a window open and assume there’s still plenty of less-dumb mistakes in there. Another few reads and I might catch them all. But aside from minor edits, there’s some major ones too. Some to do with Cocos2d v2, some for the iPhone 5, and so on. If you’ve been reading the book already, you should update your version.