As anticipation builds for Apple's January 19 press event, the tech web has latched onto the notion of "GarageBand for iBooks," suggesting that Apple will release iBook creation tools to the public. Ars Technica believes it's true, while Philip Elmer-Dewitt does not. Interestingly, both opinions are based on discussions with the same person.
Chris Foresman at Ars and Elmer-Dewitt both spoke with Matt MacInnis, CEO of Inkling, a company that's been making interactive textbooks for the iPad for some time. MacInnis does expect Apple to make production tools available, but does not feel that Apple is out to "digitally destroy" textbook publishing, according to Elmer-Dewitt.
"Apple is not trying to kill the incumbents," MacInnis told Elmer-Dewitt. "They've learned their lesson from upending the music industry."
As for the tools themselves, Elmer-Dewitt suggests we should expect a solution to support the textbook industry. The GarageBand reference may have been misplaced as well. In his conversation with Elmer-Dewitt, MacInnis referred GarageBand for iPad, and how Apple used it, in part, to demonstrate what was possible on the iPad 2. Expect a similar demonstration from Apple on Thursday. Specifically, "...a sample iPad textbook, produced in-house and packed with pedagogical bells and whistles" to serve as a model for publishers.