View Full Version : Special Characters

06-29-2011, 04:57 PM
:help:I have a ePub book in InDesign and I am exporting for digital editions. I have several files in the InDesign Book. One of those files is exporting quotation marks and the like into those special characters that html displays as weird characters. Only the one file is affected. The same quotations, etc., are in several if not all of the other files, and they display fine. The problem shows up in multiple readers. Any ideas what would cause the one file to export differently than the rest?

06-29-2011, 05:35 PM
Ok, not this is more complicated. Went back and got a previous version of the InDesign File. Exported the individual file to ePub. Looked fine. Went back and exported the book. Problem returned. Again, only with that same InDesign file. So the file appears to be getting corrupted only when it is exported as part of the book. But again, only that single file out of a total of 19 files in the book.

06-29-2011, 09:54 PM
? is an indication that the character that the ? is showing is not in the character set available for the device. It may be the file is specifying the wrong character set and thus cannot find the character. If you compare the ? location with the source what character should it be? It is likely being defined wrong or it is an unusual foreign character.


06-30-2011, 10:17 PM
abbotrichard - I had exactly the same problem when I started doing epubs. The files I was converting had been created by others so I didn't have their history. I would copy from the print file to an empty indesign file and all the : " ' endash emdash ended up with their numeric equivelent. ie

& &
• •

I thought I could get around this by copying all into note pad then into a fresh new inDesign file but they followed me and in a book of 15 chapters or so they only appeared in two chapters.

I checked that the encoding was UTF-8 but found no answer either here or with our in-house web designer who rights in code all day.

Fortunately the incidences of it happening stopped with the newer books but my solution to the problem was to unzip the epub package. Open one of the files (usualy the OPF to add the date meta data which indesign doesn't do) and do a find and replace in all files in that directory with notepad++

ie find • and replace with •

Then when the author wants changes to the book you have to make the changes in the HTML not inDesign otherwise you have to start the whole process all over again.

By the way that was back when I was using CS4. I'm using CS5 now and haven't seen the problem.

07-01-2011, 07:03 PM
There's clearly something screwy going on with your export - & should be rendered as an ampersand without any problem as all. Unfortunately this sort of problem is almost impossible to diagnose without seeing examples of the actual files, since the cause is generally something fairly obscure.