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Old 08-17-2009, 06:40 AM   #346
b0ned0me
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Originally Posted by ahi View Post
Beautiful books are becoming increasing quick and simple to create.
Really? How long would it take you to knock together something like this?http://frmarkdwhite.files.wordpress....ated-bible.jpg
Personally I don't think getting the kerning, hyphenation, referencing and layout of graphic elements right in a textbook or whatever makes it 'beautiful'. It makes it professional and non-offensive, and it seems to be a step too far for a lot of publishers these days. How many books nowadays are hand-optimised page by page? Most of them look like they were dumped straight out of a word-processor or DTP package into the printer.

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Oh... and where you say "usual mediocre-quality physical book" leaves me confused. Are you not aware that 99.9% of physical books are, typographically, far higher quality than reflow formats can possibly achieve?
- Ahi
Well, I've read a lot of books and I think I can say with my hand on my heart that I've never been reading a book and thought "wow! This typography sure is nice". On the other hand, I've had plenty of moments of annoyance due to poor quality. Physical books nowadays sometimes include such delights as homonyms, typos(!), incorrectly referenced comments, charts/illustrations in the wrong place, and I've even seen entire paragraphs of text repeated or in the wrong place. You obviously take pride in your work and are employed by an organisation that is prepared to invest in order to produce a professional level of quality (you lucky dog!). However many of the books I've bought recently were printed on poor quality paper, with smudgy ink and flimsy spines, and some were clearly released without the benefit of a spell-check, let alone decent proof-reading/editing. If I'm going to have to put up with that, I may as well save some cubic metres of storage space and have it in e-form.

Given that people can't afford (or be bothered) to make the most of a well-established format like printed paper, it seems reasonable to assume that they won't make full use of the capabilities of e-formats. If editing and proof-reading is sometimes too much trouble these days, its likely that painstaking text layout is going to be even further down the priority list.

I'm sure PDF is a better layout for presenting publications than most alternatives, but if 99% of e-books are only using a tiny subset of the capabilities of any format, who cares? The limitation is more likely to be the ability of the person producing the book, or whether the various hardware and software readers can render it adequately (or even consistently) than the format itself. That, and the economics of selling enough copies to justify the effort are IMO the real challenges at the moment, not the further reaches of the 'format features' checklist.

Given the choice between an all-ePub mass market tomorrow or a continuation of the current format war in a teacup, I'd prefer the former. I honestly don't care whether the world settles on ePub, PDF, MOBI or whatever, so long as it gets us away from the constant fretting about incompatability and technical glitches as soon as possible. Then we might actually get the publishers paying some real attention to getting more ebooks out there, and maybe even to the quality and pricing of what they produce.
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Old 08-17-2009, 08:12 AM   #347
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Originally Posted by b0ned0me View Post
Well, I've read a lot of books and I think I can say with my hand on my heart that I've never been reading a book and thought "wow!This typography sure is nice"
If you do not notice anything than the typography (silent) is very good.
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Old 08-17-2009, 08:19 AM   #348
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I'm with b0ned0me in that I often notice bad typography in printed books. Not only bad printing, but bad hyphenation, wrong choice of characters (dashes, hyphens), absence of ligatures (clash in "fi" or "fl"), wrong letters or combinations ("°" as a combination of "o" and "/", which noticeably do not match, an up-down "e"), etc.

Books can be nice works of art, but most books are not.
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Old 08-17-2009, 08:29 AM   #349
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jellby View Post
I'm with b0ned0me in that I often notice bad typography in printed books. Not only bad printing, but bad hyphenation, wrong choice of characters (dashes, hyphens), absence of ligatures (clash in "fi" or "fl"), wrong letters or combinations ("°" as a combination of "o" and "/", which noticeably do not match, an up-down "e"), etc.

Books can be nice works of art, but most books are not.
When given a choice between different editions of books, I'll check to see if there is a colophon (actually, I check most books I buy anyways). While it may not necessarily mean that the utmost care was taken when designing the book, it's almost always a sign that someone was paying some attention during the design/layout process.
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Old 08-17-2009, 12:57 PM   #350
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To me it's a question of utility. If something does what I want, then it's simply worth more than something which is less flexible. If I'm going to be printing something, then sure PDF is great, but if I'm going to be reading it (and I have a desktop, a laptop and an ancient tablet PC) then a reflow format is litterally worth more to be than the PDF.

Admitedly I read mostly HTML and from Baen at present, but...
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Old 08-18-2009, 11:51 AM   #351
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Same here!! I would appreciate it greatly!
Me too!
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Old 08-18-2009, 11:53 AM   #352
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Same here!! I would appreciate it greatly!
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Can someone PM with info on the scripts needed to liberate EPUB documents for my own personal use only? I have python installed on my PC already.
Me too!
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Old 08-18-2009, 01:31 PM   #353
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Me too!
The scripts are called ineptkey.pyw and ineptepub.pyw.

Yahoo does a better job searching pastebin that Google (say) does.
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Old 08-18-2009, 01:32 PM   #354
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So I am confused. A lot of the concern re: LRF is for the PRS-500. 3 (maybe 4)questions:

1. Will the PRS 505 support both LRF and ePub? I have bought a LOT of LRF-formatted books from the Sony site in the past 2 years for my 505. I would hate for them to be reduced to worthless bits and bytes for the hundreds I have spent or have to redownload all of them after deleteing them from both the computer and the Reader.

2. If it doesn't support them as is, will Sony provide an update that allows both LRF and ePub to be read on the 505?

3. Will the new PRS-600 (which has more capacity and a touch screen without (presumaly) the horrible resolution of the PRS-700) support both formats? (BTW - from a storage perspective which format take more space for the same book - LRF or ePub?).

4. Does anyone know for sure what the answers to the above are - has Sony committed one way or the other?

Thanks.
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Old 08-18-2009, 01:38 PM   #355
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1. Will the PRS 505 support both LRF and ePub?

3. Will the new PRS-600 (which has more capacity and a touch screen without (presumaly) the horrible resolution of the PRS-700) support both formats?
1. The PRS-505 already supports LRX (BBeB) and Adobe ePub.

3. The PRS-600 will also support both formats. See Sony Style: Reader Touch Edition

The only major unknown is how Sony intends to support the migration from LRX to ePub on the older PRS-500.
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Old 08-18-2009, 01:39 PM   #356
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So far, no word has been announced as to if support for LRF (and thus the DRMed LRX variety), has been dropped. You will be able to redownload all books purchased through the Sony store, but I doubt that you'll be required to delete the LRX books first (I've accidentally downloaded multiple copies of the same book before from Sony).

Current firmware for the 505 DOES support both LRF and ePub. ePub support was added a while back.
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Old 08-18-2009, 01:39 PM   #357
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hmgreen- considering that the ePubs aren't going to come until later this year and the new devices are coming later this month, then I feel safe saying the new devices will support LRF and LRX. Currently the 505 can do both.
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Old 08-18-2009, 02:41 PM   #358
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Thanks, everyone!
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Old 08-18-2009, 05:14 PM   #359
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Well, I'm glad I pre-ordered a PRS600 for my first reader! While I am sooooo not up on the terminology, I will catch up with the learning curve eventually.
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Old 08-18-2009, 11:04 PM   #360
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I don't know if this has been reported yet (this thread is too long to go through every post), but I just had an online chat with a Sony service representative and she confirmed that all books purchased in LRX format can be re-downloaded in EPub after the switch. Way to go Sony, shows your serious about making that bookstore a success.
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