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Old 08-26-2012, 07:58 AM   #46
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Thank you, Arbiter, for clearing that up.

But you're still wrong.
Prove to me then that the Apple flavor of fixed layout conforms to the ePub 3 standard for fixed layout and I'll agree that you are correct.
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Old 08-26-2012, 08:30 AM   #47
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Prove to me then that the Apple flavor of fixed layout conforms to the ePub 3 standard for fixed layout and I'll agree that you are correct.
You do realize that Apple's fixed layout (and B&N's) came out in 2010 while the fixed layout spec wasn't finalized until 2012, right?

Are you saying that the fixed layout formats weren't Epub in 2011 because they didn't meet a spec which didn't exist? That makes no sense.

Or are you saying that they stopped being Epub once the spec was released? That doesn't make any sense either.
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Old 08-26-2012, 11:35 AM   #48
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You do realize that Apple's fixed layout (and B&N's) came out in 2010 while the fixed layout spec wasn't finalized until 2012, right?

Are you saying that the fixed layout formats weren't Epub in 2011 because they didn't meet a spec which didn't exist? That makes no sense.

Or are you saying that they stopped being Epub once the spec was released? That doesn't make any sense either.
I'm saying they never were ePub because there was no official fixed layout in ePub at the time and now that there is, they aren't using it, so it's still not ePub. Never was and still isn't ePub no matter what they call it.
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Old 08-26-2012, 11:56 AM   #49
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I'm saying they never were ePub because there was no official fixed layout in ePub at the time and now that there is, they aren't using it, so it's still not ePub. Never was and still isn't ePub no matter what they call it.
Okay, so now you're changing the argument from them not meeting the spec (even though they did) to them not being Epub by your fiat, even though everyone else called them that?

Thanks for clearing that up, Arbiter of All that is Right and True in eBooks.
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Old 08-26-2012, 12:00 PM   #50
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Okay, so now you're changing the argument from them not meeting the spec (even though they did) to them not being Epub by your fiat, even though everyone else called them that?

Thanks for clearing that up, Arbiter of All that is Right and True in eBooks.
How can they have met a spec that never existed? Prior to ePub 3, there never was a spec for fixed layout in ePub. Even though they called it ePub, it never was and it's still not.
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Old 08-26-2012, 12:17 PM   #51
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How can they have met a spec that never existed? Prior to ePub 3, there never was a spec for fixed layout in ePub. Even though they called it ePub, it never was and it's still not.
As I said before, they met the Epub spec at the time. Obviously you never bothered to read it.
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Old 08-26-2012, 12:54 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by Nate the great View Post
You do realize that Apple's fixed layout (and B&N's) came out in 2010 while the fixed layout spec wasn't finalized until 2012, right?

Are you saying that the fixed layout formats weren't Epub in 2011 because they didn't meet a spec which didn't exist? That makes no sense.

Or are you saying that they stopped being Epub once the spec was released? That doesn't make any sense either.
Yes, that is precisely the point. There was no fixed-layout ePub standard in 2010, therefore, by definition, a fixed-layout spec devised in 2010 is not ePub. Such books have NEVER been ePub books. They were not ePub in 2010, and they are not ePub now. It's nonsensical to say that "they met the ePub spec at the time". They did not, because the ePub spec at the time had no specification for fixed layouts. They couldn't have met the spec at the time, and they certainly don't meet it now.
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Old 08-26-2012, 01:19 PM   #53
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Yes, that is precisely the point. There was no fixed-layout ePub standard in 2010, therefore, by definition, a fixed-layout spec devised in 2010 is not ePub. Such books have NEVER been ePub books. They were not ePub in 2010, and they are not ePub now. It's nonsensical to say that "they met the ePub spec at the time". They did not, because the ePub spec at the time had no specification for fixed layouts. They couldn't have met the spec at the time, and they certainly don't meet it now.
Nope. Wrong.

The Epub spec is a set of minimum requirements. It is not prescriptivist in nature. Ie, it doesn't describe all the allowable content, just what a file must have. That means that a fixed layout Epub could still meet the Epub spec.

So the industry standard Epub was fragmented then and still is now.
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Old 08-26-2012, 01:48 PM   #54
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Nate, you don't have to take my word for this. Get an iBooks fixed-layout book and run it through the ePub validator at http://validator.idpf.org/. It will fail validation - I guarantee it.

Regardless of the fact that some people may choose to call such fixed layout books "ePub" (and it's certainly true that some people do), it's just plain wrong to do so. They are not valid ePub books; they are books that can only be read by iBooks.
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Old 08-26-2012, 04:04 PM   #55
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Nate, you don't have to take my word for this. Get an iBooks fixed-layout book and run it through the ePub validator at http://validator.idpf.org/. It will fail validation - I guarantee it.

Regardless of the fact that some people may choose to call such fixed layout books "ePub" (and it's certainly true that some people do), it's just plain wrong to do so. They are not valid ePub books; they are books that can only be read by iBooks.
Wrong again. It will validate:
http://blog.threepress.org/2011/01/1...-layout-epubs/

But whether something meets the spec is irrelevant. (If that were a criterion then you'd have to disallow everything sent through Pubit, which doesn't do adequate validation.) What matters is that the vast majority of digital publishing calls the fixed layout formats Epub.
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Old 08-26-2012, 05:10 PM   #56
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The link you provide specifically states:

Quote:
iBooks now supports an extension to EPUB that allows publishers to create books with precise layout using CSS. This is Apple’s own extension, not part of the EPUB specification itself
(Emphasis mine). Such books are not ePub files. I don't give a damn what some people may wrongly choose to call them. The whole point of ePub is that it is a published and ratified standard. Anything that doesn't conform to the standard cannot legitimately be called an ePub file. Standards conformance is not a "popularity context", but a simple technical matter. A file either conforms to the ePub standard, or it does not. These do not, and cannot legitimately be called ePub books.
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Old 08-26-2012, 06:08 PM   #57
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The link you provide specifically states:



(Emphasis mine). Such books are not ePub files. I don't give a damn what some people may wrongly choose to call them. The whole point of ePub is that it is a published and ratified standard. Anything that doesn't conform to the standard cannot legitimately be called an ePub file. Standards conformance is not a "popularity context", but a simple technical matter. A file either conforms to the ePub standard, or it does not. These do not, and cannot legitimately be called ePub books.
And you should go read the spec before mouthing off about it. It specifically allows for developers to do nonstandard things to Epub files and still validate. This was an intentional part of the design. That is why I said that the Epub spec is a set of minimum requirements, not a prescriptive document.

Getting back to the original point:

So Apple's FL Epubs are indeed Epubs, which means the so-called Epub standard is fragmented by mutually incompatible content. That internal issue renders the related issue of Kindle incompatibility moot.

So long as Epub is internally incompatible Jon cannot kick Kindle around for being the same.

P.S. And Harry, did you really think you could win an argument on the facts against someone who writes about this stuff for a living?
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Old 08-26-2012, 06:34 PM   #58
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I am pretty familiar with the specs on the IDPF site. Could you point out which part of the spec "specifically allows for developers to do nonstandard things to Epub files and still validate"? I really don't recall having come across this statement in my reading of the spec.

Thanks.
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Old 08-26-2012, 07:12 PM   #59
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I am pretty familiar with the specs on the IDPF site. Could you point out which part of the spec "specifically allows for developers to do nonstandard things to Epub files and still validate"? I really don't recall having come across this statement in my reading of the spec.

Thanks.
Google the words Epub spec island and do some reading. If you jump around based on the search word island you'll see that Epub allows for non-standard features.

BTW, this is going away in Epub3. But it's still valid for Epub 2ish.

So as you can see, Epub was basically designed to introduce incompatibilities. And thus as far as the consumer is concerned there is no standard Epub format.
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Old 08-26-2012, 09:50 PM   #60
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While you two are having your little discussion on the side, that still leaves uncontested the bold statement by JSWolf "more standard epub books are being sold world wide than Kindle books". Do we have any real numbers here? Any educated guesses by the experts? My money would be on Amazon -- especially since official ebooks in languages other than English are still a lot less widely available/accepted by readers. Even if there are more epub compatible readers out there, many people might use them to read PD or library books, or even pirated materials. Not all reading material is paid for.

That being said, even if Amazon had only a 40% market share, calling epub THE standard wouldn't make sense.

Last edited by HansTWN; 08-26-2012 at 09:56 PM.
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