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Old 07-09-2012, 05:59 AM   #1
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Sideloaded EPUBs with KEPUB features

Hello,
does anyone know how to give sideloaded EPUBs features that KEPUBs have, such as Chaptername - Page X of Y, covers without white edges and the possibility to change font and margins.
I know you can unlock some of these features by renaming a *.epub file to a *.kepub.epub file, but then it has no cover!

Most important for me is to know how to get the Chaptername - Page X of Y option, because that's actually something I really like about Kobo.
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Old 07-09-2012, 11:56 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpelgrom View Post
Hello,
does anyone know how to give sideloaded EPUBs features that KEPUBs have, such as Chaptername - Page X of Y, covers without white edges and the possibility to change font and margins.
I know you can unlock some of these features by renaming a *.epub file to a *.kepub.epub file, but then it has no cover!
If you can't change fonts margins etc. in an EPUB, it is because it is coded into the EPUB itself. Look for ways to edit the css embedded in the EPUB. I think most here would recommend doing and EPUB to EPUB conversion in Calibre

Quote:
Most important for me is to know how to get the Chaptername - Page X of Y option, because that's actually something I really like about Kobo.
Part of the difference is that KEPUBs are not EPUBs . I think that the book is delivered as a series of files rather than one file. This is probably what allows the features you like.
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Old 07-09-2012, 12:40 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by nogle View Post
(...)
Part of the difference is that KEPUBs are not EPUBs . I think that the book is delivered as a series of files rather than one file. This is probably what allows the features you like.
In that case I think it's weird that when I load my EPUBs in the Kobo-app for Android, it has this Chaptername - Page X of Y "view".
Is it possible to convert my *.epub to a KEPUB file so I can use this view (and not by renaming *.epub to *.kepub.epub and losing my cover)?
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Old 07-28-2012, 12:08 PM   #4
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Don't know if you are still interested in this but if so you can take a look at my post http://dsandrei.blogspot.fr/2012/07/koboish-ebooks.html where I describe how to fix the covers and the annotations. Actually you get most of the things you described in your first post
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Old 07-28-2012, 06:40 PM   #5
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Hi dsandrei
Brilliant post seems to have solve not only page numbers but also increases speed of page turning. Thanks
Confused on adding ".kepub" at the end of the title template in calibre. Could you give example.
Many thanks
Michael
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Old 07-28-2012, 07:36 PM   #6
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dsandrei, thanks for this. I was about to start experimenting.

Having cranked open a free kepub, the <span id="kobo.1.1"> looks like it should be done per sentence. The first number is the paragraph, the second number is the sentence. Of course, I don't know if the sentence granuality is necessary.
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Old 07-29-2012, 08:05 AM   #7
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Hi dsandrei still testing but another request?
You stated "that's to much work for me so I just modified kiwidude's Modify Epub plugin for calibre to do this for me."
Is is possible to have a copy of the calibre plugin?
Many thanks Michael
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Old 07-29-2012, 12:48 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nogle View Post
Part of the difference is that KEPUBs are not EPUBs . I think that the book is delivered as a series of files rather than one file. This is probably what allows the features you like.
Actually, Kepubs are Kobo Epubs. They are not Adobe Epubs. Epub is a standard and Kepubs are fully compliant. The "wrapper" determines particulars regarding how the files behave and display. The DRM is different, as well.

When you adjust the book files now, keep in mind that you may need or wish to return them to their original form later on.

Last edited by taming; 07-29-2012 at 01:04 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 07-30-2012, 12:00 AM   #9
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I agree with taming, keeping the original files is always a good idea. The format may change in the future. I did have to revert a book because I processed it twice . I also can't say about DRM. It may be different, I didn't look into that as there is a reason for it. I was just interested in having my own documents displayed properly and I like the was kepubs are handled by the device.

@murg: I wondered about the second number. It does seem to be a subsequence but I didn't analyze it and doesn't seem needed to get annotations working so I left it at that.

@mapline: The faster page turns are probably due to the rendering engine used for this format. For the naming when uploading with calibre you can take a look at
http://manual.calibre-ebook.com/gui.html#send-to-device and http://manual.calibre-ebook.com/template_lang.html. The default in calibre is "{author_sort}/{title} - {authors}". You just have to change it to "{author_sort}/{title} - {authors}.kepub". But keep in mind that this will be applied to all documents you upload to your device.
The original Modify epub plugin can be found here http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=154371 . I only added a function and a menu entry to be able to add the extra tags to a book. The main problem was that I also had to include the latest version of BeautifulSoup as the one packed in calibre is an older version and didn't have all the functions I needed. From what I've seen the plugin uses lxml instead of BeautifulSoup but I only had a couple of hours to figure out how to add those tagsand BeautifulSoup seemed the easier option. I suggest you ask on the Modify epub thread if someone could include this function and rewrite it using lxml as the you may want to update the plugin in the future and the logic involved is actually very simple.
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:05 AM   #10
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I would be very, very surprised if the differences between kepub and epub last for long. I'm not talking about page numbers, but rather the things that simply didn't make it into 2.0 for epubs.
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:22 AM   #11
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I don't know what the planned features are for the next releases. I needed (to be read wanted) the kepub features. I'd really like to see these officially supported for regular epubs. It doesn't make much sense to have different behavior since the format is basically the same but I can understand there are constraints that can lead to this. Anyway, it seems to me that the kobo developers are very active (I've bought my device about 1,5 months back and there have already been two software updates) so I hope I won't need to hack my epubs for much longer.
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Old 07-30-2012, 05:12 AM   #12
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Everyone would have preferred that kepub and epub were as alike as possible in 2.0. I believe that they ran into some delays and thus out of time before the deadline for the release in Japan. In a perfect world, this would not happen, but it is not a perfect world.

As end users, we see only what we use ourselves. We don't see what what has to happen on the development end to make things happen. Let me give you an example. Many of us know that there is a new ePUB standard, ePUB 3. Among other things, ePUB 3 addresses the needs that certain languages (including Japanese) have to be read up and down, rather than from side to side. Adobe has been working on becoming ePUB 3 compliant for a long time. They aren't there yet. We can download and run a beta version of ADE, but it is not ready for release. Equally important, the mobile version that would let Adobe ePUB3s run on devices like the Kobo Touch is not ready either.

Kobo has to wait for Adobe to do its thing before they can handle ePUB3 files/books on the Touch. They did not have to wait for Adobe to handle ePUB3 for the kepubs. (Note: the ePUB issues we are currently seeing have nothing to do with ePUB3.)

What they did have to do though was implement a different backend for this to happen. During the four months we were waiting for an update, that is exactly what they did. Kobo implemented ACCESS NetFront(TM) as the EPUB 3 Standard viewer engine for the non-Adobe services they run. This would include the Touch, the various mobile device apps, and the new web based reader app to be ePUB3 compliant and ready for the new features it offers.

This was a very big deal. I believe it is also is why the kepub format got more and earlier attention in this release.

Earlier in Kobo's (fairly brief) history, ePUB development always seemed to lag behind that of kepub. That has not been routinely true for awhile. What has been true is that from the beginning they have had two different development environments to work in. I imagine the decision to do this, rather than to do something like Sony did and only work within the Adobe environment, was in part financial. Adobe charges each time those acsm downloads happen. They charge for a bunch of things. It also means waiting on Adobe for things like ePUB3.

I don't have any idea exactly what the developers are working on right now, other than to say that they are working through a list of known issues and problems with the firmware.

Font tuning is a big step forward, but it has to be properly implemented, and it missed the mark for ePUBs. Something having to do with the different backends/development environments seems to have screwed with sideloaded fonts on ePUBs as well. And somehow, the font sets we did have changed (and not in a good way).

Bookshelves are also a big deal. I believe what was released is first step in a longer process of making that feature better and more useful. This is an area where ePUB and Kepub diverge. A big part of this seems to be the reality of Kobo not being able to sync things having to do with sideloaded books through their server--a privacy issue in Canada. I imagine there will be some sort of workaround, but I don't necessarily think it will happen as quickly as we would like. If the Kobo driver work for Calibre happens, then this may solve some of the issues for those people who use Calibre. It's a stop-gap measure, but it will be helpful to those folks who use Calibre for library management.

None of this really explains why things like the slow page turns on ePUBs weren't addressed before the release of 2.0. It's hugely annoying, and presumable not a difficult thing to fix. FWIW, the last beta the beta group saw before release had slow page turning for kepub and epub books. Kobo uses the beta group to develop a list of known issues, but the group doesn't necessarily see them addressed as part of the external beta testing process.

This has been a long post; it's so long that I should probably give Karma to anyone who makes it all the way through it . Notice that throughout the post I used phrases like "I think", "it seems", and "I believe". This was intentional. No one from Kobo sat down over coffee with me and put this all together just like this. It's more than guessing and less than perfect knowledge from the horse's mouth.

Last edited by taming; 07-30-2012 at 05:14 AM.
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Old 07-30-2012, 09:27 AM   #13
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Hi taming
Thanks for your post. I found it of real interest and makes me hopeful about future developments.
Pity though Kobo could not do this themselves.
They must remember that "giant leaps are very often achieved by small successful steps". (especially in computing)
Thanks again
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Old 07-31-2012, 02:59 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by taming View Post
None of this really explains why things like the slow page turns on ePUBs weren't addressed before the release of 2.0. It's hugely annoying, and presumable not a difficult thing to fix.
maybe that the slow page turn depend mostly from the new rendering engine, and if it's like that maybe that Kobo can do nothing to fix it... maybe that only Access can fix the rendering slowness of their "NetFront™ BookReader ver1.0 EPUB Edition" (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/kob...ces-2012-07-02)
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Old 07-31-2012, 03:07 AM   #15
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Nope. The slow page turns are ePUBS and the rendering engine has not changed. It is definitely fixed already in what we will ultimately receive. One of the things I noticed is that as development happens, some very basic things occasionally go wonky and have to be messed with again.

The new backend is for Kobo's proprietary kepub format only.

Last edited by taming; 07-31-2012 at 03:11 AM.
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