View Full Version : Emulators


Quiss
08-09-2012, 01:37 PM
Hi,

I am in the process of converting a book from htm to ePub, using calibre and will be publishing via Lulu.

This is going rather well. Too well, actually.

Looking at my pretty file in my Sony reader I wonder how this looks in other readers that use ePubs.

Is there such a thing as an emulator that lets me see how the pages and cover display on other hardware?

Should I even worry about this?

Q.

Pablo
08-09-2012, 02:47 PM
Is there such a thing as an emulator that lets me see how the pages and cover display on other hardware?

Not that I know of, unfortunately.
As most readers use Adobe software for displaying ePub files, testing with ADE may be a good idea.

Should I even worry about this?

Of course, you want to make sure everybody can read your book no matter the brand of the reader. Some things that come to mind:

- Split your text in sections no greater than 250-300 K, otherwise some older readers might not be able to open the book.
- Some readers don't support font-embedding. A book with embedded fonts will display with the reader's default font in these readers. The character set of the default reader's font is sometimes limited, so if you are using characters from languages other than english, they may not display correctly.
- Some readers don't have a "history" button. So if you are using links from body text to endnotes, it is a good idea to provide a "go back" link, from endnote to body text.

I hope this helps.

Quiss
08-09-2012, 03:21 PM
I hope this helps.

It does, thank you. My books isn't complicated in any way. Cover image, some chapter headings and then nothin' but Times Roman.

When I first ran this through Lulu's converter, the book displayed on my Sony Reader edge to edge without any margins and it did not let me justify the text at all even when I uploaded a justified Word document.

Using calibre, I got my wee margins and the justification, but that's on the Sony. So I'm worried if it'll have the same formatting on a Kobo or Nook.
(I gather ePubs don't work on the Kindle)

Q.

Toxaris
08-10-2012, 02:16 AM
If you already have a html file, it is relatively easy to create a nice epub. You don't need calibre for that.
Anyway, you need to change the style sheet.

Quiss
08-10-2012, 12:29 PM
If you already have a html file, it is relatively easy to create a nice epub. You don't need calibre for that.


Ah. So.....
is it a secret? Does one need a magic wand instead of software?

Toxaris
08-10-2012, 03:58 PM
It is no secret at all. An ePUB is just XHTML zipped in a special way. You need some other files, but they are also all text based. It is not really difficult.
If you want it a little easier, fire up Sigil and import your HTML. If you enter your metadata (F6 I believe) and save you have an ePUB. Only, in Sigil you can tweak your ePUB with margins and so on.

Quiss
08-10-2012, 08:18 PM
Ah, I see.

I tried Sigil and found it awfully convoluted.
I did get the margins to work with calibre.

Q

JSWolf
08-10-2012, 08:27 PM
Before you convert this HTML into ePub, did this HTML come from Word?

Quiss
08-10-2012, 11:44 PM
Before you convert this HTML into ePub, did this HTML come from Word?

Yes, I save as (filtered) web page. Word's idea of HTML is a bit of a trainwreck but the file I've then converted via calibre looks pretty good on my Sony,

Toxaris
08-11-2012, 04:24 AM
Looks pretty good from the outside... Inside it will be a big mess and results will differ on each device even more. You really need to clean up the HTML file Word created first.
You should really avoid ePUB conversion in Calibre. It creates a big mess with the code. It is unavoidable due to the nature of the conversion, but it can be done a lot better.

JSWolf
08-11-2012, 11:40 AM
While it may look OK on your Sony, there can be other issues like font size changing, night mode, changing the settings, some things your Sony doesn't do you cannot test. So it could be a nightmare on say an iPad using iBooks and/or Bluefire. So yes, clean up the mess Word made, load it into Sigil and work away to convert it to ePub. It's not hard once the mess is gone.

Quiss
08-11-2012, 07:35 PM
All right - talked me into it.
I can code HTML in my sleep so that shouldn't be hard. Will give Sigil another shot.

Q.

JSWolf
08-11-2012, 08:08 PM
Any time you plan to publish, you want the cleanest code possible for the least gotchas.