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Old 08-18-2012, 03:42 AM   #1
starrigger
Jeffrey A. Carver
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Location: Massachusetts, USA
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Centered lines and conversion to epub

I've used Calibre to format quite a few books (exporting from Word as filtered html and importing the html into Calibre). I've finally locked horns with a problem I've kind of been ignoring for a while: centered lines often do not display correctly in epubs direct from Calibre. The problem is the reading software treating the centered lines as though they are indented, so that the centered text is a little to the right of center. I first noticed it on the Nook, and in Aldiko on Android. I believe I've seen it in ADE, as well.

The problem starts with Word's export, which (even if you're very careful in defining your Word styles) does not specify "text-indent: 0" in centered styles. The solution, as I've learned, is to add that line to every style in the CSS stylesheet that's centered. I've started doing that with Sigil, after converting to epub. It's a picky job, prone to error, and maddeningly time consuming--especially if you have to go through repeated iterations as you discover errors to fix. It also seems like it should be unnecessary.

Some reading software is smart enough to center text when the style says align center. But since a lot aren't smart enough, I wonder if Calibre could be, instead.

Would it be possible to incorporate in the conversion a check for centered styles, and the addition of the "text-indent: 0" line in all styles that call for center alignment? It would save a heap of fiddly work afterward, and make the books look better.
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