Transmission Line Noise

iTunes LP, iTunes Extra & TuneKit

Sun, Jun 6, 2010
iPad iPhone iTunes

iTunes LP (itlp)  and iTunes Extras (ite) are inter­ac­tive expe­ri­ences cre­ated to accom­pany music and movies. iTunes LP lets lis­ten­ers hear an album and view lyrics, liner notes, band pho­tos, per­for­mance videos, and more.

With iTunes Extras, view­ers can see cast inter­views, exclu­sive clips, behind-the-scenes footage, and photo gal­leries along with the movie.

Tunekit is the pack­age from Apple that enables the pro­duc­tion of a set of rich media inter­ac­tions around music in iTunes and Apple TV.

Tunekit is a col­lec­tion of files in a direc­tory and the direc­tory has the exten­sion dot itlp which cause OSX’s finder and iTunes etc. to see it as a bun­dle. Essen­tially in this “bun­dle” are html, css, javascript files as well a images and media files that go up to make the whole bun­dle. This col­lec­tion of files then pro­duces with HTML5 and CSS3 (all open source)  what would nor­mally be gen­er­ated a a mono­lithic & pro­pri­etary Flash appli­ca­tion. It also opens the devel­op­ment up to a wider audi­ence as those skill set are more widely avail­able and eas­ier to learn.

By show­ing the bun­dle in Finder (right click and Show Pack­age Con­tents) you see this

itlp/ite struc­ture

The bun­dle breaks down with the fol­low­ing structure.


Stores audio files used in the iTunes Extras, such as a short music excerpt that pro­vides back­ground audio that loops.


Stores Javascript con­troller files that con­trol ele­ments and actions on a page and the nav­i­ga­tion and tran­si­tions between pages. Each con­troller should have a cor­re­spond­ing HTML file in the views directory.


Stores the CSS files for each View. The CSS files con­trol the posi­tion­ing of but­tons, text, and images on the page. It also includes some inter­ac­tive ele­ments and animations.


Stores all the images used in the iTunes LP or iTunes Extras. In this exam­ple tem­plate, each view has its own images folder.


The page that opens when the user starts an iTunes LP or iTunes Extras. Often called the Home page.

(This page has lit­tle HTML in it. It seems to have all the links to the stylesheets and the javascript and the body tag con­sists of just the ini­tial page. In essence ite and itlp are fun by javascript)


The icon for the iTunes LP or iTunes Extras. Also some­times referred to as album cover art or film poster art. The for­mat should be either PNG or JPG with­out the file extension.

The iTune­sArt­work file is auto­mat­i­cally gen­er­ated at the time of pur­chase, so there is no need to author this file except for test­ing pur­poses. It must be removed prior to sub­mit­ting to the iTunes Store.


Describes the meta­data for dis­play­ing the iTunes LP or iTunes Extras in iTunes. Meta­data includes things like descrip­tion, genre, copy­right year, artist names, and so on. This file is auto­mat­i­cally gen­er­ated at the time of pur­chase, so there’s also no need to author this file except for test­ing purposes.


The man­i­fest is an XML file that must live in the top level folder of the iTunes Extras or iTunes LP; that is, it must be a sib­ling of the main index.html file. The pur­poses of the man­i­fest are to:

â – iden­tify the ver­sion of the iTunes LP or iTunes Extras

â – call out what plat­forms it is com­pat­i­ble with

â – iden­tify any items in the user’s iTunes Library that are to be playable via the user inter­face of the iTunes LP or iTunes Extras


The videos folder stores bonus videos, such as deleted scenes and behind-the-scenes inter­views, as well as bonus audio tracks (with the excep­tion of back­ground audio which needs to live in the “audio” folder). The main video asset or main album asset are not stored in this folder.


Con­tains the HTML files for each view in the iTunes LP or iTunes Extras. A view defines the lay­out of the page. Each view should have a cor­re­spond­ing JavaScript con­troller in the con­trollers folder.


Con­tains javascript libraries pro­vided with TuneKit.


Con­tains sounds for your use. These sounds can be used to pro­vide audio feed­back as the user nav­i­gates using the Apple TV remote. See the TuneKit doc­u­men­ta­tion for how to use them.

For more details and sam­ple files, and detailed pdf with instruc­tions and the tunkit api go here to Apple.