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The original concept of the iStory was developed at iPodSoft. Programmer Nathan Esquenazi created the freeware program iStory Creator for Mac OS X and Windows. iStory Creator has now been succeeded by iWriter, the shareware version. The iStory medium as an art form first implemented by iStory Silver in December 2004, followed by MAD Studios in August 2005.
iStories is now a program especially created to allow multimedia story telling. Images, text, music and sounds can all be combined to create excellent online resources. iStories come in many genres, such as adventure, horror, combat, quiz games, or just simple fun. Anyone can make an iStory about anything, as long as they have a program like iWriter, iStory Creator or are familiar with the use of basic HTML coding.
iStories is a simple and addictive PC educational tool that allows people to create their own linear or interactive stories by piecing together images, sound and text. It was designed to be simple to use, yet powerful underneath the surface, and it is now being used across the globe for both personal and educational use. iStories links into the highly successful and award-winning digital series, Inanimate Alice, and is co-production between nDreams and the Bradfield Company Ltd. iStories was a project on a short piece of work that was completed by nDreams in early 2008.
iStories can be found in three main formats:
- .xsp: An .XSP file is an iStory that was created with iStory Creator, but can be played with or without iStory Creator.
- .xnp: A .XNP file is an iStory created with iWriter and can only be read with iWriter.
- text format: Text Format is the process of creating the HTML text files from scratch, using Notepad or another similar text editor and coding each file individually.
In September 2007, MAD Studios member, Ethan_odd, created a technology centered "iMag" (Interactive Magazine) with the title EOE (Ethan_Odd's Electronics). EOE was a "pseudo-iStory" and reviewed and previewed different technology. On April 28, 2008, EOE was terminated. Even though the site is still up for old EOE downloads, no more have been made.
iStories are written with programs like iStory Creator or iWriter. iStory Creator is no longer available through its main site, iPodSoft, but the Windows version can still be downloaded at MAD Studios. iWriter can be downloaded as a 15-day trial version. iPodSoft no longer features iStories on its website.
A new iStory creation software is being developed by MAD Studios member, seraphrevan. The project goes by the codename, "Project Arcalius", named after one of seraphrevan's abandoned iStories. Details on what features the new software will contain have not been disclosed.
MAD Shut Down
As of May 18, 2008. iStory hosting site, MAD Studios, the #1 iStory distributor, has been shut down by its administrative figure.
Although iStories are not a new concept, as text choose-your-own-adventure (CYOA) games have existed in the past, due to iPodSoft's development of iStory Creator, and with the help of such sites as iStory Silver, iPod Arcade, MAD Studios, and iPodSoft the term iStory has become popular amongst many iPod users who enjoy this form of text entertainment.
iStory Silver still hosts their old iStories for download, though new ones sent are no longer being added. They are a good example of what has been achievable with this medium.