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Old 11-25-2007, 01:02 PM   #30
schmidt349
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Device: Amazon Kindle
Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
Latin and Greek texts are of great interest to me, too, as you may have seen from some of my past postings.

Latin is no problem, but for ancient Greek you really need to use a format such as PDF which supports embedded fonts, and embed a suitable font into the document. Unicode supports modern Greek, but not the accents and breathing marks required for ancient Greek.
PDF isn't a good choice of format for anything except replicating paper documents, which is a fine application and very useful but not so much so for e-texts. If you use JSTOR to get your journal fix you know what I mean: they do a really phenomenal job of replicating exactly what you'd get if you had access to the journals in print, but you can't really do anything cool and electronic with them. Reflowing, for instance, is key for electronic distribution, for which reason the "page" as a milestone has to go away.

Many journals, especially in the sciences, use TeX for typesetting, so there's a very easy and rapid path to reflowable text for them.

The Perseus project just made all of their public-domain texts available in XML, which is the academic standard for manipulation of documents. As an interchange format you really don't get much better. The bottom line is that I need to transform these documents via XSLT into something suitable for e-readers, but the Kindle throws up way too many roadblocks.

Most of the big document databases (see a big listing here) use XML for document interchange for the best of reasons. So what you have here is the e-book world being completely divorced from the academic world, which is probably not a good means for ensuring its long-term survivability.

Sigh.
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