Category Archives: Digital Publishing

World views of U.S. pre/post election

Trying something new … please let me know if you experience issues.

Using data from the GDELT Project and data visualization tools from Tableau, put together this image of world opinion pre and post election. Note the huge (yuuuge?) improvement in Russian opinion, followed by Australia and Brazil, and the negative swing in Canada, England, and elsewhere.

The data is from 1-11 November. Feel free to change the dates and scroll over various countries for further details (e.g. the number of articles and sources). Data is country-by-country government and media articles/reports on the U.S. – these are all stories on the U.S., not just stories on the U.S. elections.

The original visualization is hosted here on Tableau Public. Enjoy!

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Welcome to the redesigned blog!

Welcome to the redesigned and updated TravelswithScott blog! The new site features a more efficient, attractive design and greater layout flexibility – allowing the addition of the new Jobs page. I hope you enjoy the new site; please let me know if you have any questions or suggestions.

Scott

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WORK HARD FOR THE KIMS! An Introduction to North Korea

UPDATE (19 FEB): The book is now (finally!) available on Kobo.

The “KIMS” in the title represent North Korea’s ruling family, in power in Pyongyang since the 40s and anxious to stay there. The images in the book introduce North Korean history, culture, and ideology by translating the country’s unique propaganda posters into English, then exploring their themes and messages.



Most of the posters used in the brief book are already here on the website, or available on the Facebook page, but the book includes additional details and explanations.

The book is currently available for download from Amazon for Kindle, Barnes and Noble for Nook, and Apple’s iBooks store. A Kobo version will be available soon. Please let me know if you’d like to see the book available in additional formats. There are no plans to publish a paperback or hardcover version at this time.

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Censored in South Korea?

As you can see from the flag graph below, I get my second largest number of visitors from South Korea. Not exactly stunning news, given how many of my posts are about Korea.

However, according to How to Get Censored in South Korea, a 13 August article in the New York Times on growing Internet censorship in South Korea (never mind the North), certain content can get your site banned in the South. The Times article not only carries some of the banned content, it offers to share it with other websites.

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North Korean Propaganda Posters

UPDATE (JUL 2015): It’s been a while, but just added about a dozen new posters and images to the Facebook page, plus posted a couple below.

UPDATE (DEC 2014): I added some new posters below (including a translation of the Korean on the movie poster promoting ‘The Interview’) and to the Facebook page. As always, thanks for stopping by and let me know if you have any posters you’d like translated.

UPDATE (JAN 2014): The propaganda posters and English translations have now been compiled into a brief ebook introducing North Korean history, culture, and ideology – WORK HARD FOR THE KIMS!, available now on Amazon, iBooks/iTunes, Nook, and Kobo. The images and translations in the book are from those below and on the Facebook page. Please let me know of other images you’d like to see translated.

UPDATES (9 Dec 2013, 25 Apr, 18 Jan, 7 Dec 2012, 15 Nov, 18 Oct): More images have been uploaded. Please feel free to suggest additional images you’d like to have translated.

In what will hopefully be an ongoing project, I’ve posted a few North Korean propaganda posters, with rough translations, to the Facebook page. Once there, click the photo to read the translation and related comments.
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Average South Korean Household Spends $200 a Month on ‘Media’

A mildly interesting story, for those of us selling content in Korea at least, says the average South Korean household spends W224,413 (roughly $200) per month on “media,” including charges for mobile phone, Internet, cable TV, home phone, and (printed) newspapers and magazines. For someone currently paying for the same services in the U.S., with its far slower Internet speeds and cable bills that can easily hit $100 a month, the breakdown is striking:
  • W172,136 ($155) a month for cellphone service (again, this is per household, not per person)
  • W27,148 ($25) a month for Internet
  • W16,347 ($15) a month for cable (reminding me how fondly I recall that bill from Seoul, compared to DC)
  • W14,960 ($13.50) a month for home phone, for those who still have it
  • and W14,423 ($13) a month for newspapers and magazines
The survey, of 500 adults age 20-60, also asked people to rank the importance of various media forms on a scale from 1 to 5, with 5 being the most important. The Internet was ranked highest at 4.32, followed closely by mobile phones at 4.30, broadcast TV at 3.7, home phones at 2.5, and (printed) newspaper and magazines at 2.4.
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콩글리시 to English (Konglish to English)

My new book, 콩글리시 to English (Konglish to English), is finally out and available for download from iTunes. Written partially in Korean, the book is designed to help address common problems faced by Korean learners of English, plus those who teach them.

I set up a separate section of the blog, KONGLISH / 콩글리시, to focus on Konglish-related writing, including excerpts from the book. Having researched and written on Konglish since the late 90s, I have a fair grounding in the subject, but am always open to learning more – please post comments below or in a related post.

콩글리시 to English (Konglish to English)

Another goal in writing the book, as I blogged about in the Digital Publishing category (above), was to learn how to use Apple’s new iBooks Author program, and then compare it with Adobe’s Creative Suite, InDesign, and Captivate. While the Apple product, all of six months old, lacks many of the capabilities of the much-older Adobe programs, it also lacks their price (Author is free) and steep learning curve. You can be up and productively writing in Author in minutes (provided you own a Mac – there is, as yet, no Windows version), something that cannot be said for those new to, or only mildly familiar with, the Adobe monstrosities.

Having used the product for six months and found it generally user-friendly, practical, and simple, if occasionally buggy and odd (as blogged about in previous postings), I am curious to see what Apple makes of Author. Will it follow iTunes in eventually expanding to Windows? Will Apple allow authors to publish to platforms (i.e. Kindle and Nook) outside of iTunes and iPad? Will Apple finally stop putting that irritating little ‘i’ in front of iEverything iIt iMakes?

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New ‘Konglish’ Category

UPDATE (11 July): The book has been approved for sale (!) and is slowly working its way through the Apple bureaucracy. It has yet to make it into iTunes, but is currently visible on the iTunes Preview website.

I’m adding a new section to the website today, in honor of my forthcoming book, 콩글리시 to English (Konglish to English), an education book intended for the Korean market and written entirely in Apple’s new iBooks Author.

The new section will consist of common 콩글리시/Konglish expressions and how best to translate and explain them in English. After visitors from the U.S., visitors from South Korea make up the largest readership for the blog and my 1stopKorea website. Adding this content, written partially in Korean, is a way of addressing that readership.

The new book, despite the use of the iBooks platform, marks a return to my roots. I’ve been researching and writing on Konglish since the mid-90s, making it the focus of my first book, 미국에선 안통하는 한국식 영어표현 (roughly: ‘Konglish expressions that won’t work in the U.S.), published way back in 1999 and, unfortunately, now out of print.

Please enjoy the new section and feel free to add any Konglish, including a translation/explanation, you come across. I’ll be adding the first few expressions shortly, but backdating them so they don’t completely take over the front page of the blog. Thanks, and enjoy!

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Problems with Audio Files and Quizzes in Apple’s iBooks Author

After a brief hiatus, finally back at work and finishing up my first book using Apple’s new iBooks Author digital publishing platform. As this project winds down, a few new issues (for more writings on iBooks Author, head to the Digital Publishing section of the blog) have become evident.

First, as shown in the screenshots below, the audio controls differ markedly when switching between the portrait and landscape orientations. I prefer the portrait view’s smaller controller size and would love to be able to use that controller in both views. Unfortunately, if it can be done, I’ve yet to figure out how.

Second, if you look closely at the two screenshots, you’ll notice the portrait view has the recording I made for “during midnight” (a common Korean-English expression discussed in this book on Konglish). Unfortunately, the recording disappears when the book is switched to landscape view, a problem that happens at least one other time in the book. Despite deleting and reloading, plus numerous other attempted workarounds, I’m unable to fix the problem. This leaves a reader using only landscape view deprived of the book’s full content. I’m not sure why this happens, but it shouldn’t.



No Sound

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Apple’s new iBooks Author vs. Adobe’s Digital Publishing Suite and new Creative Cloud

UPDATE (JAN 2014): I just published another ebook, this one heavily focused on images, and found little has changed over the past couple of years – Apple’s system is still far and away the easiest to use, resulting in a smoother, more appealing final product. Unfortunately, as before, IBooks Author only works on Apple products and proved essentially useless for developing a Kindle book. Given that my sales on Amazon dwarf my sales on all other platforms combined, this is a significant drawback.

Addressing that drawback by using the greater layout, template, and design controls of the Creative Cloud products also proved untenable for Kindle. Amazon prefers submissions formatted in Word, with very limited layout and design options. Essentially, the layout is confined to text, then an image, then more text. Anything involving more complicated, professional layouts proved impossible. Meaning my time spent with Adobe’s products was largely wasted.

In the end, given the project was for an image-focused ebook to be delivered via Amazon and Apple’s bookstores, Creative Suite wasn’t necessary. I used iBooks Author to create a book with a fairly sophisticated, magazine-style layout for iTunes. Then I took the text from that book, pasted it into a Word doc, then added back in the images, to create a book with the layout of a middle school English paper to use on Amazon. The easiest method would have been to just write everything in Word, but the Apple system is so simple to use, and looks so much better (at least for an image-heavy book), it was worth the extra work. The end result however, is readers using a Kindle will have a clunkier experience than those using an iPad or Mac.


UPDATE (29 JAN 2013):If you’re publishing for an iPad-only audience, a class or work team where everyone owns the device as part of the project, then iBooks Author is far easier and quicker for creating new content, especially if it contains video or audio. Even existing content can be easier to route through Author than the Adobe suite, unless you’re a skilled Adobe user with content already set up in one of the suite’s programs (e.g. InDesign, Dreamweaver, Captivate, etc.).

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  • Chronicler of Islamic State 'killing machine' goes public https://t.co/BtwUPTxkXn - posted on 08/12/2017

  • #NorthKorea joins US in increasing focus on coal; NK remains nominally in support of Paris climate accord. https://t.co/IJeABeMGzy - posted on 05/12/2017

  • Interesting use of data and visualization tools by the AP: The message in Pyongyang's propaganda https://t.co/qYy9JUUqrt - posted on 04/12/2017

  • 'Despite committing 100s of 1000s of men from the Iraqi army, special forces, and militias to fight ISIS offline, t… https://t.co/241O1VxAHZ - posted on 25/11/2017

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