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How to Format 3D Charts in iBooks Author

If you’re working with 3D charts, iBooks Author offers an additional section called 3D Scene in the Chart inspector for pie charts and in the Chart inspector’s Chart pane for bar, line, and bar-and-line charts. (There are no 3D presentation options for scatterplots.) Its options are

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  • 3D Position: Drag the pointer through the 3D Position bubble (marked with crossed two-way arrows) to rotate the chart to any rotation angle.

  • Lighting Style: Use this pop-up menu to determine how the simulated lighting appears on the chart’s objects. The options are Default, Glossy, Medium Center, Medium Left, Medium Right, Soft Fill, and Soft Light.

  • Chart Depth: Use this slider to give the chart elements simulated depth; the more you move the slider to the right, the more dimension appears for the objects. To have the objects appear paper thin, move the slider all the way to the left.

  • Show Bevel Edges: Select this option to give objects in 3D bar and pie charts a beveled (diagonally cut) edge. (This option isn’t available for 3D line charts.)

To create a chart, use the Charts icon menu in the toolbar to choose the desired chart type. Or you can choose Insert→Chart and then choose the desired chart type from the submenu that appears. iBooks Author creates a chart that uses sample data. It also displays the Chart inspector and the Chart Data Editor panel.

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A the top of the Chart inspector are options always available, no matter which pane or other sections are active:

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  • Presentation Type icon menu: You can change the type of graphics used to present your chart data by selecting a different option from the Presentation Type icon menu’s 19 options, which cover a range of bar, line, area, pie, scatterplot, and bar-and-line presentation types. The right side of the icon menu’s options are 3D types. If you choose one of these types, the 3D Chart panel appears. Drag your pointer within that panel to change the rotation of the 3D chart, as desired. (E-book readers can’t change the chart rotation on the iPad, by the way, like they can with the 3D graphics.)

  • Edit Data button: Click the Edit Data button to open the Chart Data Editor panel, where you can edit the chart data.

  • Chart Colors button: Apply the desired fill colors and textures to the chart’s bars, lines, and pie segments by clicking the Chart Colors button, which opens the Chart Colors panel. In that panel, choose from the top pop-up menu the type of predefined fill you want (the options are 3D Texture Fills, 2D Image Fills, and 2D Color Fills). Then choose the desired predefined color scheme from the pop-up menu below (which has 12 options). Drag the preview swatch onto the chart element to which you want to apply that style; all elements in its data series get that fill and color scheme. Or click Apply All to apply the fill and color scheme to all the chart’s data elements; iBooks Author determines the specific color for each data series’ elements from the chosen color scheme’s palette.

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