Ocean Paddler Magazine is venturing into a new mutli-media world. I'm pleased to help by providing some content.
There's now a digital version of the magazine. In time, I suspect it will come loaded with extras. It might even help to change what we consider a magazine to be.
Issue 21, currently free online, gives a glimpse of what's possible. For example, on Page 6 there's a yellow circle alongside a news article about SeaKayakPodcasts.com. (Give it time to buffer and load). Click it, and you'll hear one of those podcasts - about how to pick a paddle.
On Page 64, alongside an advert for our DVD Sea Kayak with Gordon Brown, another yellow circle lets you watch video edited for the magazine.
Issue 22, currently available to subscribers only, takes all this a step further, integrating audio and text. After you've read the review of the new Outer Hebrides guidebook, click the yellow circle and listen to a 30 minute interview with the authors.
OK, this isn't much yet. But you can see the potential.
To begin with, you might read the mag at home, pick what interests you, then download the digital version to enjoy the additional video or audio content of whatever interests you most. Subscribers to the paper issue also have free access to the digital version, but they have to request it - although to be honest, there are still a lot of bugs to work out on the delivery.
But that's just the start.
When many of us have an iPad, or similar tablet computer, a 'magazine' becomes an entirely different product.
You will read / listen / watch the entire magazine on one device. A journalist contributing an article will have to provide, not only photos, but also audio and video.
Advertisers can provide video demonstrating their kayak or other product in action.
Rupert Murdoch believes this is part of the way we'll consume media and is investing heavily. He may, of course, be wrong. Liz says she will never read a book or magazine off a screen.
Initially I was highly sceptical of OP's digital issue. I found it difficult to read on my desktop computer screen.
Now I believe it is a major development for what some bloggers dismissively call 'the dead tree press'. Oh, and the iPad software for OP is due in September.
OP Editor Richard Parkin has been helped in all this by my friend Duncan Smith of WideBlueYonder and Solent Sea Kayaking. Duncan and his extensive team built the SeaKayakWithGordonBrown.com website, regularly help me with onlne stuff, and built a site for FionaOutdoors.co.uk, an eclectic outdoorsy-blog with a female perspective.
If you're looking for web development help, WideBlueYonder comes highly recommended.