“Realness” and the Promise of iPad

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As we get closer to being able to hold an iPad in our hands, we’re beginning to see a whole new kind of writing about the device and its potential. Rather than speculate about its bells and whistles, bloggers and professionals of different kinds are imagining how iPad is actually going to change the way with think about content and computing. Yesterday, eBookNewser posted about book designer Craig Mod’s amazing vision for how iPad could alter the way we think about reading on screen; today, we came across a post from app developer Matt Legend Gemmell, who has some very specific ideas about how app developers need to be rethinking their apps for iPad’s new form.

Of most immediate interest in terms of eBooks is Gemmell’s notion of “realness” on the iPad, how it’s size allows it to simulate, for the first time on a mobile device, the actual appearance of, for instance, print books, something no other eReader can do. Of the iBooks app, he says, “We’ve all been in the room with these varnished bookshelves, lit by afternoon sunlight” He goes on to describe the way iPad simulates the experience of reading a book: “We’ve all bought a new novel, opened it and guiltily buried our nose in the pages just to enjoy the smell of books.”

All his analysis is, of course, based on the images of iPad that apple has released, but he seems pretty right on. We’ll keep bringing you these kinds of speculative articles until we can actually test them against the device itself, on April 3rd.