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iPod and iTunes Hacks by Hadley Stern

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Hack #39. Write Your Own iPod Book

If you think you'd like to write your own iPod book, this hack provides you with the necessary guidelines for file length, formatting, and linking.

Apple has provided a nice set of instructions for how to take full advantage of your G3 or later iPod's Note Reader: the iPod Note Reader User Guide, available from Apple's Developer Connection page for the iPod as a free, 76-KB PDF file (http://developer.apple.com/hardware/ipod/index.html).

iPodLibrary.com also provides the following useful instructions for aspiring iPod book authors (see http://www.ipodlibrary.com/downloads/Authoring_podBooks.pdf):

  • Use a plain text editor to avoid unwanted characters that a word processor adds.

  • Keep individual files below 4 KB each.

  • Avoid using file extensions (e.g., .txt or .rtf).

  • Keep the title and section names short, because long titles truncated.

  • Organize the files according to the proper file structure.

  • Test it yourself before sharing it with the world.

This hack delves into some of the nittygritty details, so you're fully equipped for your literary undertaking.

Organizing Your Files

If you decide to write an iPod book, there are a few ground rules regarding length that you must bear in mind. Each page of your book will be a separate note, and each note must not exceed 4 KB (your iPod will truncate the file when it reaches that limit).

Another important consideration for ...

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