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Old 10-19-2012, 12:28 AM   #1
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Question about full justification on Paperwhite

It looks like most of the books I've purchased from Amazon are showing up fully justified on my new PW, and I don't see a way to change that without removing DRM, converting in Calibre, and re-uploading to the Kindle servers. (If there's something I'm missing on the device itself, I'd love to know about it.) My question is this: I'm thinking about buying the Harry Potter books, but am not sure how the DRM/conversion/re-upload procedure works with watermarking. I really, really, REALLY hate right-hand justification, and probably wouldn't get the HP books if I can't read them with a ragged right edge. I'm hoping that someone with a PW confirm that either a) the HP books don't default to full justification, or b) it's possible to fix the formatting of the books in Calibre and re-upload.

Anyone?
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Old 10-19-2012, 01:58 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snape View Post
It looks like most of the books I've purchased from Amazon are showing up fully justified on my new PW, and I don't see a way to change that without removing DRM, converting in Calibre, and re-uploading to the Kindle servers. (If there's something I'm missing on the device itself, I'd love to know about it.) My question is this: I'm thinking about buying the Harry Potter books, but am not sure how the DRM/conversion/re-upload procedure works with watermarking. I really, really, REALLY hate right-hand justification, and probably wouldn't get the HP books if I can't read them with a ragged right edge. I'm hoping that someone with a PW confirm that either a) the HP books don't default to full justification, or b) it's possible to fix the formatting of the books in Calibre and re-upload.

Anyone?
I'm not saying this just to be condescending, but you do realize that even the Harry Potter books are justified in print, right? (Unless maybe you live in another country and their publishers don't justify their books? Seriously, I don't know.)

I'm glad for the automatic justification of books because it's one less thing for me to worry about editing, re-converting, and verifying in Calibre. I like justification because I like my e-ink pages to resemble print pages as much as possible.

Sorry, I realize that isn't helpful. Just not sure why you dislike it so much. As far as I can tell, all books default to justified. I have a Paperwhite, so I can test your "fix" the formatting option. How were you planning on doing it? Check left align in Look & Feel? I'll try it and report back to you. If there's another way you were thinking of, let me know!

ETA: That works. You can manually convert to a mobi checking left align in Look & Feel and you end up with ragged edges. Hope that's good news for you

Last edited by 7hir7een; 10-19-2012 at 02:03 PM.
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Old 10-19-2012, 02:53 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by 7hir7een View Post
I'm not saying this just to be condescending, but you do realize that even the Harry Potter books are justified in print, right? (Unless maybe you live in another country and their publishers don't justify their books? Seriously, I don't know.)

I'm glad for the automatic justification of books because it's one less thing for me to worry about editing, re-converting, and verifying in Calibre. I like justification because I like my e-ink pages to resemble print pages as much as possible.

Sorry, I realize that isn't helpful. Just not sure why you dislike it so much. As far as I can tell, all books default to justified. I have a Paperwhite, so I can test your "fix" the formatting option. How were you planning on doing it? Check left align in Look & Feel? I'll try it and report back to you. If there's another way you were thinking of, let me know!

ETA: That works. You can manually convert to a mobi checking left align in Look & Feel and you end up with ragged edges. Hope that's good news for you
Yes, I know the print books are justified. That's how I read them originally. It's something that's only a minor annoyance and doesn't seem to bother me as much in DTB format, but for some reason I find it distracting and uncomfortable on an e-reader.

I've been doing the left align thing when converting my ePubs for use on the Kindle, but those books either came DRM-free or the DRM has been removed. I don't think I've come across the watermarking form of DRM that's used on the HP books, and so didn't know how the conversion process would work. I appreciate you confirming that converting to left alignment would make it the way I want it -- thank you!
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Old 10-27-2012, 12:20 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 7hir7een View Post
I'm not saying this just to be condescending, but you do realize that even the Harry Potter books are justified in print, right? ... Sorry, I realize that isn't helpful. Just not sure why you dislike it so much. As far as I can tell, all books default to justified.
Those of us who dislike it so much do so in part because it is atrociously implemented on the Kindle. Your argument seems to be that the Kindle should do layout like a real book. Fine: back up your argument by showing us examples of real books that don't have hyphenation. You say EVERY print book is justified (not quite true, but I'll grant that it IS true 99 percent of the time). But almost every print book ALSO has hyphenation to get the text to fit and NO print books -- go ahead, I defy you to find even one -- do what the Kindle has done for years, which is when a mid-paragraph line is going to have too much white space (because of the lack of a hyphenation routine), it FAILS to right-justify that line. Seriously: find a print book that does that from any major publisher; I'll bet you $50 to your favorite charity that you can't.

Further, Kindle fails to recognize that either before or after an em-dash is a perfectly acceptable place to wrap a line of text -- further exacerbating the atrocious job the device does of justification.

And more: full justification looks best with lots of words on the line, and most print books accomplish that by using smallish type (10-point type on 12-point leading is common for paperbacks). But many users of ereading devices employ them precisely so that they can have bigger type -- and some like/require dramatically bigger type; again, you won't find any print books that fully justify 3.5-inch-wide lines (the width of a Kindle screen) at 14 point, 18 point, 24 point, or more -- but you'll find lots of Kindle users reading books with type that big; again, no print-book type designer would fully justify 24-point text on a 3.5-inch line (and really, the line is smaller than 3.5-inch, anyway, because that's the width of the screen and of course there are margins without text at the left and right sides); it looks awful, and, more than that, it's actually very hard to read.

There IS an aesthetic to book design, and there are also well-established typographic principles. If you seriously can't see the deficiencies in the way the Kindle handles this, then, forgive me -- you DID weigh in to say you don't get it, after all -- but you're the layout equivalent of being tone deaf; you lack an aesthetic sense when it comes to type.

All best wishes.

Last edited by RobertJSawyer; 10-27-2012 at 01:10 PM.
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Old 10-27-2012, 06:49 PM   #5
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Now that I've read several more books on my Paperwhite, I have definitely noticed what you are talking about. Because I keep the font on size 2, it isn't often that a long word breaks up the justification, so I didn't notice it at first. However, just to weigh in again... Hopefully I don't offend you like I've obviously already done from the tone of your response.

I have a hypothesis for why Kindles might do this. Before I switched to a Paperwhite, I owned a Nook Simple Touch and a Nook Simple Touch with Glowlight. These e-readers did have hyphenation to allow for unbroken full justification. You know what I noticed? On those words that were broken with hyphenation, you could never use the extra features on the menu you get from touching the word like looking up definitions, etc. Perhaps Kindle had the same problem, couldn't fix it either, and instead of leaving the features broken on these words, decided to solve the problem by preventing the situation from happening in the first place.

Again, just my opinion. Sorry for offending.
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Old 10-29-2012, 03:55 PM   #6
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Thank you, 7hir7een. I have an original Nook (the one with both the big e-ink screen and the little LCD screen for accessing functions) and it does not support hyphenation; the page layout on it is as bad as on the Kindle. I'm glad B&N has added hyphenation to their later models.
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Old 10-29-2012, 06:18 PM   #7
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Old 01-16-2013, 09:45 PM   #8
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i made a blank text file with name-

ALLOW_JUSTIFICATION_CHANGE=true
placed it in root and restarted kindle paper white, my books are now appear in full justified text. my paperwhite is not jailbroken.
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Old 01-16-2013, 09:56 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 7hir7een View Post
Now that I've read several more books on my Paperwhite, I have definitely noticed what you are talking about. Because I keep the font on size 2, it isn't often that a long word breaks up the justification, so I didn't notice it at first. However, just to weigh in again... Hopefully I don't offend you like I've obviously already done from the tone of your response.

I have a hypothesis for why Kindles might do this. Before I switched to a Paperwhite, I owned a Nook Simple Touch and a Nook Simple Touch with Glowlight. These e-readers did have hyphenation to allow for unbroken full justification. You know what I noticed? On those words that were broken with hyphenation, you could never use the extra features on the menu you get from touching the word like looking up definitions, etc. Perhaps Kindle had the same problem, couldn't fix it either, and instead of leaving the features broken on these words, decided to solve the problem by preventing the situation from happening in the first place.

Again, just my opinion. Sorry for offending.
Pretty sure Nook finally fixed this in a recent update (maybe 3-4 weeks ago), I do remember verifying this at least. You can now select hyphenated words. Um, as long as they aren't on the last line. But selection still has problems unrelated to hyphenation.
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:32 PM   #10
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I believe kf8 format does break correctly around em and en dash on all devices that support it. And there's always been a decent workaround, for sufficiently diligent ebook creators (of which there are a few), i.e. insert zwnj character:

http://hisdeedsaredust.com/2012/01/t...on-the-kindle/

Also I do see sparing use of hyphenation on Kindle iPhone app (which still does not yet support reflowable kf8 BTW). I'm guessing they are just subclassing iOS objects and those in turn are probably using webkit, which supports this behavior.

Nook and Kobo get hyphenation by virtue of Adobe RMSDK, I think it has been there at least a couple of years now. Sony either is still using something older or has disabled it.

I do like hyphenation myself, if it is done 'tastefully'. But like 7hir7een I use small text sizes so things tend to justify well without it. At larger text sizes the same effect can be had if you put it into landscape.

I think Amazon will eventually get around to adding this. But it is not 'free' and it will be another thing that diligent ebook creators will need to take into account (e.g. to prevent hyphenation of headers and delicately formatted poetry from breaking in the wrong place). And some people will hate it and want a way to turn it off.
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Old 01-16-2013, 11:40 PM   #11
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It's pretty annoying that the kindle--including the new PW--doesn't understand it can break at hyphen and em dash. So in the preceding sentence it would treat kindle--including as one word. I use largish font and the ragged margins are pretty frequent. Makes me want to buy a dx
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Old 07-25-2014, 11:17 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhiru View Post
i made a blank text file with name-

ALLOW_JUSTIFICATION_CHANGE=true
placed it in root and restarted kindle paper white, my books are now appear in full justified text. my paperwhite is not jailbroken.
You have this working for sure? I can't get it to work for the life of me. I'm actually looking to turn off full-justification.
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Old 07-25-2014, 11:38 PM   #13
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Turning on full justification isn't necessary, as that is the default. The question would be if you set that to false, does it do ragged right? (which I hate, by the way).
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