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Old 07-11-2012, 02:30 PM   #1
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Japanese Text in KT firmware v2.0

I loaded a sample EPUB3 file from:
http://code.google.com/p/epub-sample...rtical-writing
on KT with v2.0 firmware.

Text Display
  • Available fonts: Gothic MB101" and "Ryumin
  • Vertical text layout is displayed correctly(body text and chapter headings)
  • Ruby text is is displayed in their correct locations
  • Inline "roman" text is correctly oriented
  • On justified text, proportional spacing appears to produce slighly jagged horizontal alignment of characters between adjacent columns. This may be a shortcoming of JP text using EPUB3 however.

KT Interface
  • Line spacing, margins and justification options appear to be greyed out and unavailable
  • Since vertical text is read from right to left and pages are turned accordingly, the page turn taps and gestures appear to be backwards.
  • The Japanese language title appears in the library but the name of the author name is not displayed. (Not sure if this was present in the sample however.)
  • No J>J or J>E dictionary

Despite some minor niggles as noted above, it would appear that v2.0 has at least some, if not all of the features of the Japanese KT scheduled for launch on the 19th. I've not attempted to change the interface language yet so I don't know whether this is implemented in v2.0.

Last edited by kumaryu; 07-11-2012 at 05:37 PM.
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Old 07-11-2012, 03:25 PM   #2
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No dictionary function but I'm not complaining. For now, having a functioning EPUB3/Japanese on a ereader bought in France is good enough. I'm chuffed.

For commercial release in Japan, a J>J and J>E dictionary (even as an optional add-on) would be a significant, if not a killer advantage.

Last edited by kumaryu; 07-11-2012 at 03:35 PM.
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Old 07-11-2012, 03:44 PM   #3
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Even for non-Japanese texts, you can set your page turning preferences for either left- or right-handed. ie. left for forward & right for back, vs. right for forward & left for back. Hopefully a fully Japanese version of the Kobo will have the most appropriate handedness by default?
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Old 07-11-2012, 05:49 PM   #4
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The epub3 support for Japanese vertical layout got me hoping KT will now support right-to-left epubs as well.
I upgraded to v2.0 and tried displaying a right-to-left epub3 file, with both Hebrew and Arabic, which is displayed well in Calibre.

It didn't work. The text was displayed left-to-right on my KT.
I hope that with epub3 now starting to be supported, right-to-left will also be supported soon.
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Old 07-11-2012, 06:04 PM   #5
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It may be awhile. To the best of my knowledge, Adobe has not issued the mobile SDK yet. Kobo is using an entirely different backend scheme for kepub books that is fully ePub3 compliant. I wouldn't be surprised if for the rest we will have to wait for Adobe.

See this press announcement. http://www.vancouversun.com/mobile/b...196/story.html

Last edited by taming; 07-11-2012 at 06:12 PM. Reason: link
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Old 07-11-2012, 07:37 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thepossum View Post
Even for non-Japanese texts, you can set your page turning preferences for either left- or right-handed. ie. left for forward & right for back, vs. right for forward & left for back.
The third page-turn option in "Advanced Settings"!! I blame my failing sight...

After playing with this feature for a while, I sparked on the idea that may be the page turn directions should flip automatically depending on the binding direction of the layout.

I soon realised however that flipping page-turn direction between books can be confusing since on an ebook, there are no actual pages to turn and all I want to do is goto the next page regardless of the direction...
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Old 07-11-2012, 07:51 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baggins View Post
The epub3 support for Japanese vertical layout got me hoping KT will now support right-to-left epubs as well.
I upgraded to v2.0 and tried displaying a right-to-left epub3 file, with both Hebrew and Arabic, which is displayed well in Calibre.

It didn't work. The text was displayed left-to-right on my KT.
I hope that with epub3 now starting to be supported, right-to-left will also be supported soon.
I thought EPUB(2?) standard already supported options to specify right-to-left as well as left-to-right layouts. OTOH, I suspect rendering Arabic would also require CTL issues to be addressed to support context sensitive transformations.

Last edited by kumaryu; 07-11-2012 at 07:56 PM.
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Old 07-11-2012, 08:13 PM   #8
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Out of curiosity, I downloaded a few Japanese books (xhtml/html, shiftJIS format) from Aozora Bunko and converted them to EPUB (2) using Calibre.

Once transferred to KT, it rendered perfectly with ruby characters (furigana). Horizontal layout only but since both vertical as well as horizontal layouts are commonly used in Japan, this is not an issue.
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Old 07-11-2012, 08:29 PM   #9
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Browsing the on-board library on v2.0, I came across the "Welcome to Kobo!" document in Japanese (Kobo へようこそ).

In the section named "文章を選択する" (tr. "Selecting Text" or "Annotations" in the English document) the reference to using the dictionary is omitted. Could this mean that the JP version will not have this function when released on the 19th?
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Old 07-11-2012, 08:37 PM   #10
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Take a look at the Rakuten page (in Japanese) and see what you can tell there. http://books.rakuten.co.jp/rb/kobo-T...item/11749078/
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Old 07-11-2012, 08:50 PM   #11
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Keyboard

When the interface language is changed to Japanese, an additional 日本語 key is revealed on the virtual keyboard.

With this enabled, the keyboard functions as a Japanese QWERTY keyboard, interpreting inputs automatically into phonetic kana equivalents and displaying kanji suggestions in the space immediately above the keys.
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Old 07-11-2012, 08:56 PM   #12
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As is evident from the posts above, there's a glaring omission in the release notes for Version 2.0. Likewise in the Japanese version of the notes.
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Old 07-11-2012, 09:03 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by taming View Post
Take a look at the Rakuten page (in Japanese) and see what you can tell there. http://books.rakuten.co.jp/rb/kobo-T...item/11749078/
Curiouser and curiouser! They do mention a "dictionary to look up words (from the text)".! Underneath this, they note that the features not available at launch will be provided through firmware updates.
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Old 07-11-2012, 09:30 PM   #14
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It would appear that this is the real Macoy... and I'm truly impressed.

With v2.0, the reader software has been swapped to NetFront™ BookReader and full JP language support implemented. All without undue fuss and breakages.

All other changes in this upgrade now appear minor and cosmetic.
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Old 07-12-2012, 02:03 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kumaryu View Post
No dictionary function but I'm not complaining. For now, having a functioning EPUB3/Japanese on a ereader bought in France is good enough. I'm chuffed.

For commercial release in Japan, a J>J and J>E dictionary (even as an optional add-on) would be a significant, if not a killer advantage.
Actually, there is a J>J dictionary. One just has to choose "definition". My problem, however, is that I am in most cases unsuccessful in selecting exactly the word that I want to look up. But since the KT offers the closest match, it still works somehow for me.
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