The thing with iBooks author is that it is really well-suited to textbooks. This is because you can add interactive widgets to show images and video as well as for 3-D objects and presentations. You can have the images as a gallery which is a bit like a slideshow or they could be within a keynote presentation or even just sitting there on their own. If you want to get really creative you can add interactive images that the readers can click on an simple actions will take place, such as zooming into a portion of the image.
Making things happen in iBooks author with widgets
Another type of interactive widgets you can add to the iBook in iBooks author is the review widget. Generally you would put one of these at the end of a section or a chapter and its act as a small test for the reader to see if they have understood what was in that chapter. So you can see how this pertains to the educational uses of iBooks. The Keynote widgets that you add can be pretty much anything that you could add to the Apple presentation software so you have the opportunity of creating some hugely exciting and interactive books whether they be textbooks or any other sort of book.
With this type of widgets you can set the initial view of an image and then choose point within that image that you can zoom into. It is not quite as useful as one of the Prezi presentations that you can use, but it is something that could be quite useful within an iBook. In any case if you wanted to use a Prezi presentation then you could use the HTML widget and create with Dashcode a streaming link to website content.
In this video I show you some objects that have been added as interactive widgets. There is a Keynote presentation and a gallery slideshow of some images. The Dash code object that I created sort of worked after I had clicked upon it, in that the countdown showed, but there was a button missing. I have found that when you want to add streaming video from YouTube then the easiest way to do this is to have the widget code created for you on a website like Bookry or iBooks generator. I have created a video on the Wizardgold YouTube channel which you can find in the iBooks playlist which covers adding streamed video to an iBook.