eBook Breakthrough For iPhone Comics!

I first saw this over at mj’s blog.

Then I went to the source post.

Take a look at this video. It is staggering. It is Apple Insanely-Great staggering. It is an absolute breakthrough in the field of electronic comic books. I can’t say enough about how radical and breakthrough this is. Look!!!

Murderdrome iPhone Comic

Absolutely staggering. I’d been after Warren Ellis to jump in and pioneer eComics (here and here). They’ve gone beyond anything I could have imagined. I salute you! You have taken my breath away! You will change the world!

Update: I was so excited by this, I didn’t do much research. The underlying app is called Comic Reader from Blue Pilot Software. My skin is all tingly. This is something that Changes Everything!

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21 Comments on “eBook Breakthrough For iPhone Comics!”

  1. Philip Orr Says:

    Hi there and thanks for the excitement shown. The Comic Reader is an exciting start in enabling feature rich comic content to be available on Apples AppStore and were working hard to improve the application over the coming weeks. Just waiting for Apple to finish reviewing issue #0 of Murderdrome so keep a watchful eye out.

  2. Cliff Burns Says:

    The technology moves faster than anyone can possibly believe and each day brings another break through. What I’m waiting for is cohesion and universality, the various formats are a tad confusing to techno idjits like me…how to know what will be obsolete tomorrow and will I recognize the long touted OSG (One Smart Gadget) when it finally arrives or will I miss it and see the Singularity pass me by…

  3. mikecane Says:

    >>>What I’m waiting for is cohesion and universality

    We all are. At least with text, there is ePub to rally around, if we can ballpeen the publishers and agents to accept NO DRM WILL NOT MEAN ARMAGEDDON! (I needed to scream about that. It’s ingrained!) Yep, it turns out it’s not *always* the Publisher saying No to no DRM. It’s a parasite agent — who most likely is NOT telling his BOSS, the writer! Agents want DRM, I think, to prop up the ridiculous confiscatory RICO-like prices of ebooks. If they can squeeze more out of readers, *they* make more in commission. Never mind the actual math of lower prices (viz, Ford Model T, hello!) works against them and *always frikkin will*. I really should start ranting about agents, but they’re so low, such scum, that I tend to forget about them.

    As for comic books, damn, Comic Reader looks like it should be the standard for *that*. It’s bloody amazing what they’ve done!!

  4. mikecane Says:

    @Orr: So far, you’ve produced the most stunning and paradigm-changing software I’ve seen for the iPhone. Damn, someone should have been videotaping your brainstorming sessions! That was history in the making! I hope DC, Marvel, et al, have sat up and taken some real big notice!

  5. Michael Teuber Says:

    I was laying on my bed thinking of ways to really take advantage of the iPhone and I imagined downloadable comics that allowed you the simply move from page to by sliding your finger. Apparently I wasn’t the first. Serendipitously I happened to click on the macsurfer link to this page, thinking it was about traditional eBooks. Needless to say I am impressed.

  6. mj Says:

    The app is a combination of a design by PJ Holden put into code form by Philip. I think they’re both equally responsible for the excellent design.

    Paul has a heap more ideas and is a very smart guy (artist AND coder) and the real strength from this will come to bear when Paul brings along other comic people into the fold.

  7. Constable Odo Says:

    I’ve read that in Japan, when they use manga reader software, when they enter a new panel and there’s something like a motorcycle or automobile or an action scene, their handset will make the sound or even vibrate to the sound to simulate the action. Sort of like a built in rumble-pack for comics. That would be something nice to add to keep up with the Japanese reader software.

    Of course the manga book has to have those sound and vibration triggers put into it. But since a fair amount of people are being trained into producing manga for cellphones in Japan it’s not such a hard thing to do.

    I tried to find a link, but I had seen the article weeks ago and I can’t find it. I was just browsing random Japanese news sites at the time.

  8. mikecane Says:

    @Teuber, sliding finger = page turn is already done with text eBooks. Not new.

    @Odo (loved that character, could you have guessed?): Comic Reader is just 1.0. I’m sure they’ll add new tricks to it, maybe even those. As I understand it, it can already incorporate sound, ala “DVD commentary.”

  9. pj Says:

    Hey Mike, “Damn, someone should have been videotaping your brainstorming sessions! ”

    Since it was brainstormed, initially by me on my own, that isn’t available, but the entire concept was laid out online in a wiki with some brainstorming on it. Then, we had a couple of meetings (not recorded) – but, for the most part, it was all done in email – so a history exists :)

    If it works I’ll write a book – if it doesn’t … I’ll get on with my dayjob :)

    I have a BIG wishlist of features – many of which, to me, seem incredibly obvious – but, no-one else is doing. I’m working off a single core idea for it though: keep the experience as close to reading a comic as possible. So, I’ll be avoiding animation, sound and any other gimmicks
    (except where they add value, so, as you say, a commentary track, how to videos and … well… we’ll see :)

    -pj

  10. mikecane Says:

    It is a work of genius, seriously. It is revolutionary. And like I said in a msg to Blue Pilot, I wish this had been around in the 1970s and Jack Kirby’s Fourth World was on it. I would have been able to peel away Frank Giacoia’s terrible inks from Kirby’s wonderful pencils (thank God Mike Royer came in!).

  11. mj Says:

    As PJ said to me Friday…

    “To get perfect software, remove features until you can’t remove any more. Then stop”


  12. […] Mike Cane’s Blog Take a look at this video. It is staggering. It is Apple Insanely-Great staggering. It is an absolute breakthrough in the field of electronic comic books. I can’t say enough about how radical and breakthrough this is. Look!!! … They’ve gone beyond anything I could have imagined. I salute you! You have taken my breath away! You will change the world! … It is a work of genius, seriously. It is revolutionary. And like I said in a msg to Blue Pilot, I wish this had been around in the 1970s and Jack Kirby’s Fourth World was on it. I would have been able to peel away Frank Giacoia’s terrible inks from Kirby’s wonderful pencils (thank God Mike Royer came in!). […]


  13. Mike: re yer Kirby gag. I think you meant Vinnie Colletta, not Frank Giacoia. And Vinnie’s worst inking atrocities over Kirby’s pencils were usually perpetrated over his issues of THE MIGHTY THOR. Ugh! Giacoia was actually a pretty good finisher over Kirby (such as their work together on CAPTAIN AMERICA). Nuff quibbling!

    • William Bender Says:

      It is Vinnie Colletta who people will continue to discuss for years to come. Mark Kardwell, on the other hand, will be as forgotten as fish bones in the trash. Atrocities are people like this being allowed to make public comments about anything.

  14. mikecane Says:

    Damn, you’re absolutely correct! COLLETTA!! He was a one-man vandal over everyone’s pencils. My apologies to Giacoia (who, now that I have been corrected, I can’t think of one damn thing he *did*).


  15. […] to reject a comic book. I’ll let Mike set up the scenario… Recently I raved about a revolutionary new program called Comic Reader. This program was to be used to premiere a comic book called […]


  16. […] “Take a look at this video. It is staggering. It is Apple Insanely-Great staggering. It is an … Posted on August 26th, 2008 in Interesting […]

  17. Growl Says:

    Mark Kardwell’s opinions are like the bad taste you wake up with in the morning. Mikecane is similarly stinky. How can anyone not love Vinnie Colletta’s inking on Jack Kirby’s pencils, especially on the Thor books?

  18. mikecane Says:

    Colletta was a curse. He’d actually erase or ignore pencils.

  19. Sil Kane Says:

    I was a big fan of the Jack Kirby and Vincent Colletta Thor comics back in the day. I remember the art in those stories was far better than in any other comic books, especially the amazing amount of detail. There was a fineness in the finished product and, although I rarely look at comics anymore, nothing I have seen since is as nicely drawn.

    There was a day when people took pride in their work. Those books were great examples of that.


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