You must have been wondering that if the Internet is made up of pages, how come you cannot flip them one by one. And I am sure that some of you are tired of reading the digital books by scrolling the pages up and down.
Fortunately, Flipviewer.com came with the more human solution for turning the pages of a book. You can turn them as if you were handling a real book. The software is called FlipViewer and it comes with a library of its own where the user can store the books. I am sure that by now you are thinking at a price. This may come as a surprise for you because the software comes absolutely free of charge.
And yet, the installation file will cost you a little above 4MB of disk space. I will skip the minimum requirements and pass directly to the recommended ones. You are going to need a 500MHz CPU, 128 MB of RAM, a monitor that supports 1024x768 and a Windows OS (98SE, ME, 2000 or XP).
The interface of the software has all there is necessary for a viewer, be it a flipper. Once installed, you will see that the application is made of two components: the viewer itself and a library which will stay minimized in the system tray, ready to be opened at any desired time.
The viewer is very simple to use and if you decide to give up the frame, all there will remain will be the book itself. Of course you will also have some additional options available, like left and right zooming, the flip left and right buttons (although they are useless as you can flip the pages just by clicking on one of the pages). The printing option is also available, both for the right page and the left one; if you want to find a certain word or phrase in the book all you need to do is to press the binoculars and enter the desired phrase/word.
If you right-click inside one page, you will be displayed a drop-down menu that allows you to highlight the important information, as if you were using a marker. And the best part is that you can change the color of the highlight. The colors range from yellow, red, green and blue to lime, fuchsia or aqua. Unlike a real marker, this highlighting option is not permanent and you can apply different colors one over another.
As I said before, the viewer comes with a library that can be filled with books, magazines, newspapers, etc., the only condition is that the files have to be in one of the formats supported: JPG, PNG, OEB Package Format (OPF), HTML, HTM, MID, WAV or MP3. So, you have a wide range of file formats to choose from.
The Library window is split into two main windows: the Categories and the category content window. There are three default categories (Online Books, Offline Books and Temporary
Folder) to which you can add your own.
In order to view the contents of the library, it is enough to double-click on one of the items. The Home button right under the menu bar and you will be presented with a series of elements (magazines) and some of them are available for free while others have a price. If you scroll the page down, you will see the digital flip publications on categories (Catalogs, Children, Health, Industry Specific, etc.).
I forgot to tell one important aspect about FlipView. It can also be used as a web browser. Of course, it is not as efficient as the real thing, but if you want to follow a link, it'll get you there.
By "books", the software does not refer strictly to the books we are used to. A book in FlipViewer is also a collection of pictures or a collection of music. In order to open such a book, all you have to do is open the folder where you have all the items gathered together and open it. You will be surprised to see a book opening and after turning the first page, to see the table of contents. Click on one "chapter" and you will skip directly to that item.
The audio files can be played with the viewer, just click on it and the music will begin. To stop it, you have to click it again. Unfortunately, this feature is not equipped with all the attributes of a real audio player like Winamp
, it' will just play the song.
The pictures are viewed as if they were integrated in a photo album.The Good
The software brings you something new and the design is well done. The features are impressive and the application is extremely easy to use.The Bad
Although I have a pretty powerful computer and I do not usually care too much about the computer memory a software uses, a hunch pushed me into looking in the Task Manager. I was awed to see that the software ate almost 100MB of RAM.
The supported formats are difficult to find (I'm referring to the OPFs).The Truth
It's a good start to evolve from. The application is free and offers a new and improved alternative to reading digital books and even viewing images.
Great software.Here are some snapshots of the application in action: