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Old 05-29-2011, 07:08 AM   #1
rglk
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Bugs in new Kindle Previewer v.1.6?

=== ISSUE SOLVED, see post #14 ===

On May 23, Amazon introduced a new version of Kindle Previewer (v.1.6), and at some point after that they automatically upgraded present installs of KPV (like mine in Windows XP) from v. 1.5 to v. 1.6, without notifying the user of this upgrade.

After I'd made some edits yesterday in an ebook that I had compiled with Mobipocket Creator to the .prc format, I was puzzled to find that the text of the book in KPV no longer was fully justified throughout. Rather, a few lines on every page no longer were right justified. After I'd wasted an hour troubleshooting my edits and finding no problems, I realized that Amazon had sneeked in an upgrade of KPV to v.1.6 that may well be buggy.

In the same book read in KPV v.1.5 (running in Linux under Wine) the text was fully justified. Thinking that perhaps Amazon's silent upgrade got corrupted because it might have been occurring while I was working on the book in v. 1.5 in Windows, I uninstalled the new version and reinstalled v.1.5 in Windows, with the Internet disconnected. No problem, all text was fully justified again in the older version. Uninstalled v.1.5, and again installed v.1.6 from its installer that I'd downloaded separately, and looked at the same book: the right edge again showed a mix of justified and ragged lines.

This problem is only present in v.1.6 emulations of Kindle and Kindle DX, both in the upright and rotated orientation. In the emulation of Kindle for iPad and Kindle for iPhone, all text is fully justified.

Another thing I noticed is that the bar at the top that shows the book title and wireless and battery status, only shows up the first time the book is opened; as soon as one starts opening other pages, this bar disappears.

What am I to make of this? Have you noticed this?

For proofreading a Kindle ebook before submission, v.1.6 of KPV is useless to me, as I don't know whether the way the emulator presents my text will be the way it appears on a real Kindle.

BTW, Kindle for PC and Mobipocket Reader display the entire text of the book fully justified.

EDIT: Just looked with KPV 1.6 at two Kindle ebooks purchased fom Amazon; same problem: frequent lack of right justification.

Last edited by rglk; 05-29-2011 at 02:54 PM. Reason: problem solved
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Old 05-29-2011, 07:42 AM   #2
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Quote:
Another thing I noticed is that the bar at the top that shows the book title and wireless and battery status, only shows up the first time the book is opened; as soon as one starts opening other pages, this bar disappears.

What am I to make of this? Have you noticed this?
I would assume this part is done purposely. The disappearing title bar is standard behavior for Kindle devices that have 3.0 (or higher) software on them. So they probably made the simulator match.

I don't know about the justification issues you're having, but that definitely sounds like a bug.
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Old 05-29-2011, 08:04 AM   #3
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How do these books look on the actual Kindle? Do they match?
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Old 05-29-2011, 08:15 AM   #4
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Quote:
How do these books look on the actual Kindle? Do they match?
I'm assuming the OP doesn't have a Kindle to test it on... hence the question.
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Old 05-29-2011, 08:40 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by DiapDealer View Post
I'm assuming the OP doesn't have a Kindle to test it on... hence the question.
Correct.
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Old 05-29-2011, 08:41 AM   #6
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Then you'll have no way to know if v1.5 or v1.6 is the buggy version.
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Old 05-29-2011, 08:54 AM   #7
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On a real Kindle sometimes lines are not fully justified. It's like the software doesn't allow more than a certain amount of empty space between words.
Unfortunately Kindle doesn't have automatic hyphenation.

BTW, with 1.6 you can now use the "Open with..." command on .mobi files in Windows
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Old 05-29-2011, 09:18 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonex
On a real Kindle sometimes lines are not fully justified. It's like the software doesn't allow more than a certain amount of empty space between words.
Unfortunately Kindle doesn't have automatic hyphenation.
I hadn't thought of this, but that could very well explain it. Maybe 1.6 was updated to match the Kindle's flaky (due to no hyphenization) justification. If that's true, increasing the font size will make the issue more and more noticeable.

EDIT: Doing some of my own tests with 1.6, I'm seeing the same behavior you are. I don't have version 1.5 to compare, but I truly believe that 1.6 is more accurately portraying the way your text will look on an actual Kindle device than 1.5 was (especially if 1.5 was portraying flawless justification on the Kindle device emulations).

Last edited by DiapDealer; 05-29-2011 at 09:20 AM.
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Old 05-29-2011, 12:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DiapDealer View Post
EDIT: Doing some of my own tests with 1.6, I'm seeing the same behavior you are. I don't have version 1.5 to compare, but I truly believe that 1.6 is more accurately portraying the way your text will look on an actual Kindle device than 1.5 was (especially if 1.5 was portraying flawless justification on the Kindle device emulations).
Have you compared what you see in 1.6 with what you see on your Kindle?
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Old 05-29-2011, 12:38 PM   #10
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Old 05-29-2011, 01:05 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JSWolf
Have you compared what you see in 1.6 with what you see on your Kindle?
Yes. The text that does not fully justify on my Kindle is exactly the same text that does not fully justify in Kindle Previewer 1.6... without exception*.


* I had to eliminate the custom margins that I had on my Kindle, but once I had default display settings, the kindle version matched what I was seeing in Kindle Previewer 1.6 line for line.
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Old 05-29-2011, 01:30 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DiapDealer View Post
Yes. The text that does not fully justify on my Kindle is exactly the same text that does not fully justify in Kindle Previewer 1.6... without exception*.


* I had to eliminate the custom margins that I had on my Kindle, but once I had default display settings, the kindle version matched what I was seeing in Kindle Previewer 1.6 line for line.
If that is the case, it sounds as if this version of Kindle Previewer is a more useful tool for matching what the real Kindle displays.
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Old 05-29-2011, 01:35 PM   #13
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If that is the case, it sounds as if this version of Kindle Previewer is a more useful tool for matching what the real Kindle displays.
I completely agree.
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Old 05-29-2011, 02:48 PM   #14
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Thank you all for your input, and in particular thanks to DiapDealer for your definitive research. It looks as though the issue has been settled: Kindle devices balk at justifying lines if the resulting white space between words would get to be excessive, and this behavior is correctly indicated in KPV 1.6 but wasn't reflected in v.1.5 which pretended that all lines are fully justified. Good to know that.
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Old 05-30-2011, 02:42 PM   #15
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If that is the case, it sounds as if this version of Kindle Previewer is a more useful tool for matching what the real Kindle displays.
It definitely is.

It also finally allows opening mobi files via the command line, so that it can be set as the default application for such files.
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