View Full Version : Where's my Georgia on the Nook?


sgirsberger
01-03-2013, 11:03 PM
I have a single outstanding problem to solve with an EPUB that is a little more complex than a novel, but not as complex as a math textbook. Everything is formatted properly and looks great, but on the Nook Color, my body text, which is specified as body { font-family:"Georgia", "Times New Roman", serif } and all of the <p> classes that are based on it show up as the ugly Times New Roman (or Times). I could let this go, because the publisher wants it live very soon, except that the name Dvořák is everywhere throughout one chapter, and it's essential that both diacritics be in place. These are visible in Georgia on the Nook Color with the Publisher Defaults off, except that when I have Publisher Defaults turned ON, what I get is ugly Times New Roman. The Publisher Defaults really help the book look and read better, because there are lists and graphics that have special needs.

Please, please someone tell me why the Nook Color does not use the Georgia font family I have specified when it's a typeface that is one of the standard options on the device? This is the single thing that is holding me up now, and I don't understand why I can't have it on the PD ON side as well as the PD OFF side.

Your advice is greatly appreciated.

Doitsu
01-04-2013, 12:50 AM
AFAIK, Georgia is a Microsoft font that won't be available on the Nook unless B&N has licensed it, and since you specified serif as the fallback font, your book will be displayed with the default Nook serif font, which most likely looks like Times New Roman.
In order to avoid this problem, you'll need to embed a free font similar to Georgia. Popular choices are Charis SIL (http://scripts.sil.org/cms/scripts/page.php?site_id=nrsi&id=CharisSILfont) and DejaVu LGC (http://dejavu-fonts.org/wiki/Main_Page), which both support the accented letters that you need for displaying Dvořák.
You can embed them manually (http://blog.threepress.org/2009/09/16/how-to-embed-fonts-in-epub-files/) or have Calibre do it for you (http://www.iloveubuntu.net/calibre-095-released-font-embedding-support) by doing an epub to epub conversion.

sgirsberger
01-04-2013, 08:32 AM
Doitsu, I appreciate the information, which I have read elsewhere in these forums, but I didn't install the Georgia font on the Nook, and therefore, because it is in the font list on my device, it would seem that it must have been licensed by B&N for use on the Nook Color and above? I would like to avoid embedding fonts because there are some diagrams and a few photos in this book, as well as nice chapter dividers, and I'd like to keep the EPUB as trim as possible.

If I remove serif as a fallback font, and simply list "Georgia", I don't suppose that would force it to use Georgia? I will experiment and if necessary, embed the fonts.

dgatwood
01-04-2013, 09:53 AM
No, a reader can't use a font that it doesn't have.

sgirsberger
01-04-2013, 10:46 AM
I know that, dgatwood. : )

However, Georgia IS in the list of fonts a reader can choose on the Nook Color. I didn't put it there, so it is a choice by default. Logically, if it's something that can be chosen from the list, as a reader option, it should be available as a publisher default? I'm not calling to something that isn't there.

I understand that I will have to embed fonts in order to access the necessary diacritics for this book. But now I'm wondering why a font that is clearly an option for the reader (the person who will be reading a book, also referred to as the user) is not an option for the publisher to access on the same device.

Just storing up information for the future.

Jellby
01-04-2013, 12:00 PM
The fact that you can choose "Georgia" in a list of fonts provided by the user interface, does not mean the reading software know what to do when a book specifies "Georgia" as font-family.

I know it sounds absurd, but unfortunately reading software and GUI are not that well coupled. It could be that the internal name of the font (the one that the reading application recognizes) is not "Georgia" but something else, like "Georgia (MS)" or "Georgia Regular"... and for convenience the GUI displays just "Georgia". Or it could be that the font is not even accessible for font-family properties can only be selected as a default font.

Why don't you just remove font-family from the CSS? That way the user-selected font should prevail.

dgatwood
01-04-2013, 12:26 PM
I know that, dgatwood. : )

However, Georgia IS in the list of fonts a reader can choose on the Nook Color. I didn't put it there, so it is a choice by default. Logically, if it's something that can be chosen from the list, as a reader option, it should be available as a publisher default? I'm not calling to something that isn't there.


Ah. Now I understand. The problem is that Nook's notion of "Publisher Defaults" is hopelessly broken. As best I can tell:


The option is not enabled by default. Instead, an arbitrary (possibly user-chosen) font is used unless the user specifically chooses "Publisher Defaults" for each book.
Nook doesn't offer the "Publisher Defaults" option at all unless the book contains at least one embedded font.
Nook overrides publisher-chosen fonts in SVG content (which is very, very bad behavior).


Gross. :)

Leaving out the fallback choice won't force Nook to use Georgia. It will still use whatever font the user chose (or whatever font is the reader default if the user hasn't changed it), and it won't offer the "Publisher Defaults" option unless you embed at least one font in your book.

The only thing leaving out the fallback font will do is cause other readers that don't have the Georgia font to fall back to an arbitrary font rather than a serif font.

Does that answer the question?

sgirsberger
01-04-2013, 03:30 PM
This explanation makes a lot of sense, Jellby. I will try this, and see if the other options allow for the display of the diacritics. The serif choices are Century Schoolbook, Dutch, and Georgia, but it's likely that only Georgia supports them.

sgirsberger
01-04-2013, 03:37 PM
dgatwood, I do understand this. I hate the idea of someone seeing an open rectangle where the ř should be.

These issues are discouraging for designers, but they do challenge us to think differently.

sgirsberger
01-04-2013, 04:15 PM
Because they have to have different ISBNs anyway, maybe I will make a fonts-embedded EPUB for Nook and other readers that support EPUB, and use the nice one that already works perfectly with EVERY user font on the iPad, for the iPad. I hate to do this, but for this book, it may be necessary.

The font the Nook Color defaults to is Dutch, I believe -- that's what it looks like, when compared to the PD Off option. Times New Roman, if it were present on the device, would probably support the diacritics -- it does on the iPad.

The "including fonts" issue is something we're used to doing in packaging for print anyway. Embedding is not that far away from it.

Thanks, dgatwood and Jellby, for the hand-holding. : )

Jim Lester
01-04-2013, 04:42 PM
Ah. Now I understand. The problem is that Nook's notion of "Publisher Defaults" is hopelessly broken. As best I can tell:


The option is not enabled by default. Instead, an arbitrary (possibly user-chosen) font is used unless the user specifically chooses "Publisher Defaults" for each book.
Nook doesn't offer the "Publisher Defaults" option at all unless the book contains at least one embedded font.
Nook overrides publisher-chosen fonts in SVG content (which is very, very bad behavior).




That second one is incorrect - the Publisher Defaults option should be there for all trade epubs (unless something got changed while I wasn't looking).

Jim Lester
01-04-2013, 04:47 PM
Please, please someone tell me why the Nook Color does not use the Georgia font family I have specified when it's a typeface that is one of the standard options on the device? This is the single thing that is holding me up now, and I don't understand why I can't have it on the PD ON side as well as the PD OFF side.

Your advice is greatly appreciated.

With PD OFF - your font family rule is ignored, and the user select font is used - ALWAYS.

With PD ON - you don't have the font-face rules that define what Georgia is would be my guess (since those where in the userStyle css that is injected with PD OFF)

Adding the following may work:
@font-face { font-family: "Georgia"; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; src: url("Georgia.ttf")}
@font-face { font-family: "Georgia"; font-style: italic, oblique; font-weight: normal; src: url("Georgia-Italic.ttf")}
@font-face { font-family: "Georgia"; font-style: normal; font-weight: bold; src: url("Georgia-Bold.ttf")}
@font-face { font-family: "Georgia"; font-style: italic, oblique; font-weight: bold; src: url("Georgia-BoldItalic.ttf")}

(If this does work it will be fragile - since it's based on current builds and font names that are subject to change).

dgatwood
01-04-2013, 09:58 PM
With PD OFF - your font family rule is ignored, and the user select font is used - ALWAYS.

With PD ON - you don't have the font-face rules that define what Georgia is would be my guess (since those where in the userStyle css that is injected with PD OFF)

Adding the following may work:
@font-face { font-family: "Georgia"; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; src: url("Georgia.ttf")}
@font-face { font-family: "Georgia"; font-style: italic, oblique; font-weight: normal; src: url("Georgia-Italic.ttf")}
@font-face { font-family: "Georgia"; font-style: normal; font-weight: bold; src: url("Georgia-Bold.ttf")}
@font-face { font-family: "Georgia"; font-style: italic, oblique; font-weight: bold; src: url("Georgia-BoldItalic.ttf")}

(If this does work it will be fragile - since it's based on current builds and font names that are subject to change).

I would expect that to fail unless you include a copy of the font in the book directory or provide an absolute path to the file on the device.

Installed fonts should be selectable through a normal font-face property without the need to add an @font rule, but if one is necessary, I would expect it to be in the local form (using the PostScript font name, presumably) rather than the url form, e.g.

@font-face { font-family: "Georgia"; font-style: italic, oblique; font-weight: bold; src: local("Georgia-BoldItalic")}

dgatwood
01-04-2013, 10:02 PM
That second one is incorrect - the Publisher Defaults option should be there for all trade epubs (unless something got changed while I wasn't looking).

*shrugs* Maybe I was thinking of Kindle Paperwhite. They all start to run together after a while. ;)

pholy
01-04-2013, 11:19 PM
*shrugs* Maybe I was thinking of Kindle Paperwhite. They all start to run together after a while. ;)

Ya seen one ereader, ya seen 'em all, eh? :D

dgatwood
01-04-2013, 11:36 PM
Ya seen one ereader, ya seen 'em all, eh? :D

When you're averaging three or four new bug reports for every day you spend working on EPUB formatting among the various readers, your brain rapidly starts dripping out your ears.

On the plus side, I've been adding a rapidly growing list of rendering bugs to the EPUB page on the Wiki site. I even went back through at least some of my version control commit logs to dig up some of the more obscure bugs I have uncovered. Hope it helps some folks.