View Full Version : eBooks@Adelaide ePub problems?


dhume01
08-09-2010, 01:44 PM
A while back I had downloaded ePub ebooks from eBooks@Adelaide (http://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/), and they read just fine on my Sony PRS-505. Recently I tried downloading David Hume's "Of Suicide" (http://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/h/hume/david/), and although I can read it fine in the Sony Reader software, when I try to open it on the PRS-505, the reader simply hangs, no loading logo, no response. I have to reset it. So I assume that they have changed how their ePubs are processed, and I was wondering if someone could figure out what is wrong with them, so I could relate it to the site.
(I didn't post it to the sony thread since this seemed more like a format than a hardware issue)
Many thanks for any help!

Adjust
08-09-2010, 06:28 PM
Have you tried contacting eBooks@Adelaide?
http://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/meta/contact.html

spotrick
08-10-2010, 12:33 AM
Hi! I am the editor of the ebooks@Adelaide site, and this is the third report I've seen of problems with the Sony ereaders. The others were the 300 and 600 models.

Since I don't own a Sony ereader, it's difficult for me to say what the problem might be.

I can say I have tested our epub files using stanza on the iPad and on the kobo, without problems. They also open fine in Calibre. Validation with epubcheck produces a few "errors" to do with metadata in the content.opf file, but these should be inconsequential.

So if anyone knows more, please contact me and I'll try to fix.

Thanks!
Steve

MarcusStringer
08-10-2010, 01:46 AM
Validation with epubcheck produces a few "errors" to do with metadata in the content.opf file, but these should be inconsequential.


Hi Steve,
You should really fix those metadata errors... as metadata errors make my ebook converstions crash ADE etc... especially missing titles etc...

You should always validate your ebooks before sending out into the wild... via epubcheck and also KindleGen

Marcus
www.midlandtypesetters.com.au

spotrick
08-10-2010, 04:06 AM
Yeah, maybe. ACtually epubcheck shouldn't really report as an error the use of <meta name="dc.date.published" ... -- and there's no sensible reason any ereader should barf if it finds that.

But yeah. Just bear with me while I go edit 1,850 ebooks ... to remove the publication date. :/

dhume01
08-10-2010, 12:49 PM
Hi! I am the editor of the ebooks@Adelaide site, and this is the third report I've seen of problems with the Sony ereaders. The others were the 300 and 600 models.

Since I don't own a Sony ereader, it's difficult for me to say what the problem might be.

I can say I have tested our epub files using stanza on the iPad and on the kobo, without problems. They also open fine in Calibre. Validation with epubcheck produces a few "errors" to do with metadata in the content.opf file, but these should be inconsequential.

So if anyone knows more, please contact me and I'll try to fix.

Thanks!
Steve

Hey, I just wanted to say thanks for working on such a great resource!

I noticed that the orignal files I downloaded from the site some time ago also don't work on the reader, so I guess the problem was always there.

Wouldn't there be some way that you could convert your html files en masse into epubs?

dhume01
08-10-2010, 12:49 PM
Yeah, maybe. ACtually epubcheck shouldn't really report as an error the use of <meta name="dc.date.published" ... -- and there's no sensible reason any ereader should barf if it finds that.

But yeah. Just bear with me while I go edit 1,850 ebooks ... to remove the publication date. :/

You should test one and post it here so we can see if that is the fix.

spotrick
08-11-2010, 01:25 AM
OK, I have made some adjustments to my epub builder. Can someone with a Sony please test this book and let me know if it works (or not!):

The End of Books / Octave Uzanne
http://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/u/uzanne/octave/

This is a very small book, so small download.

Thanks!
Steve

MarcusStringer
08-11-2010, 02:32 AM
It still doesn't validate via epubcheck

spotrick
08-11-2010, 02:45 AM
See, that's where epubchk is just wrong. It's saying you can't have any links in the epub to external items, which is just dumb. This would be acceptable as a warning, but not as an error.

And really, the issue is not whether epubchk validates, but whether the Sony readers accept it.

AlexBell
08-11-2010, 04:30 AM
See, that's where epubchk is just wrong. It's saying you can't have any links in the epub to external items, which is just dumb. This would be acceptable as a warning, but not as an error.

And really, the issue is not whether epubchk validates, but whether the Sony readers accept it.

I remember the olden days when website designers had to fiddle and do work arounds to suit the many non-conforming browsers which were then used. It's much easier now because the browsers are getting closer to being conformant.

For what it is worth I have it on good authority (Elizabeth Castro, EPUB Straight to the Point) that ePub ebooks won't work on an iPad unless they conform with ePubcheck. So your attitude may well mean that people who use IPads won't be able to read books from your library. Is that what you want?

Regards, Alex

PS I'm going to download your test book, and will let you know whether it works on my Bookeen Gen3 and on my ECO Reader.

dhume01
08-11-2010, 08:22 AM
I just tried the file in my PRS-505, it crashed in the same way.

spotrick
08-11-2010, 08:34 AM
Alex, my ebooks work perfectly on the iPad, using Stanza. I guess Stanza is more tolerant than some other ereaders. They also work well on the Kobo.
But fear not, I will keep tinkering until they work on all ereaders.

spotrick
08-11-2010, 08:42 AM
OK, I've just uploaded an updated version of the Uzanne mentioned above. This validates in epubchk.

@dhume01, if you could please try this one more time and let me know if it works on your Sony ....

dhume01
08-11-2010, 10:47 AM
Whatever you did, it now works on the PRS-505!

charleski
08-11-2010, 10:56 AM
I can read the updated version just fine on my PRS-505.

Adjust
08-11-2010, 06:12 PM
This validates in epubchk.

I guess it does matter, whether it's validated or not...:jk:

tompe
08-11-2010, 06:22 PM
But yeah. Just bear with me while I go edit 1,850 ebooks ... to remove the publication date. :/

It will only take a minute or so doing it with e.g. a perl script...

spotrick
08-11-2010, 07:11 PM
Thanks mate! Now I'll need to edit the remaining ebooks ....

dhume01
08-15-2010, 03:40 PM
So what was wrong with them? (in case there's a book I want to read before you get to it ;) )

spotrick
09-02-2010, 04:17 AM
All 1890 ebooks in our collection have now been completely refreshed, and should work on the Sony devices.
It seems that while other readers are a little fault-tolerant when it comes to the epub spec., the Sonys were not. The main problem seemed to be the inclusion of qualified dublin core metadata elements in the content.opf file. Most readers (and sensible programmers) would simply ignore something as inconsequential as dc:date.modified, but not the Sony.

I also note that epubchk flags as an error the existence of .png image files, which it calls "non standard". Well, if a reader baulks at that, too bad. No way am I going back and replacing png with gif or jpg.

AlexBell
09-02-2010, 04:46 AM
I also note that epubchk flags as an error the existence of .png image files, which it calls "non standard". Well, if a reader baulks at that, too bad. No way am I going back and replacing png with gif or jpg.

Congratulations on getting all your books fixed.

But I don't understand your problem above. I've almost always used png image files in the ePub ebooks I do, and I've never had a problem - I put 40 png image files in The Woman in White.

I notice that you say 'epubchk flags as an error ...' Is this the same program as ePubcheck from Threepress Publishing? Or a different program? If it is a different program please ignore this post.

Regards, Alex

Jellby
09-02-2010, 06:37 AM
Most readers (and sensible programmers) would simply ignore something as inconsequential as dc:date.modified, but not the Sony.

The "correct" way to include this in ePUB would be a <dc:date> element with an "event" attribute...

I also note that epubchk flags as an error the existence of .png image files, which it calls "non standard". Well, if a reader baulks at that, too bad. No way am I going back and replacing png with gif or jpg.

PNG is explicitly allowed in ePUB, and I have never seen epubcheck complain on this. Maybe you are using/defining them in some particular way? What is non-standard is having PNG files (or GIF, or JPG...) referred to directly in the <spine>, for instance; you have to use some XHTML wrapper to hold the image.