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Old 11-25-2007, 12:04 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
It's not a problem on the Sony as it is, because Sony's LRF format supports font embedding. I uploaded an ancient Greek version of book 1 of Homer's "Odyssey" to the "Book Uploads" section a few months ago as an example of this.
Which edition? Allen? If so it's not terribly useful to anyone except the amateur (which is great, by the way!).

Where'd you get it, by the way? You didn't keyboard it yourself, did you? That would have been a little hard on the wrists.
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Old 11-25-2007, 12:07 PM   #32
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Here's a point I'd like to make, even if it's not entirely relevant to this thread. Why the endlessly reiterated insistence, in these forums, that PDF is an awful, horrible format for ebooks? The LRF format may support font embedding, but the applications for generating LRF output (I say as a bystander, not having given one a good try myself) seem to have severe typographic limitations. So I think PDF support is a necessity in an ebook (or etext) reading device, unless all you want is something like what I take the Kindle to be, a sort of pricey, branded shopping bag for commercial ebooks in this or that currently popular crippled format.
It's not reflowable, it's impossible to index properly, screen readers can't do anything with it, and it's really really hard to cache multiple pages rapidly unless you have some serious processing oomph at your back. Hence it's not really suitable for electronic book devices.

The horrible, horrible workaround to some of these problems that some outfits have been using is to back the page images with a dirty OCR. It doesn't work. At all.
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Old 11-25-2007, 12:12 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by akiburis View Post
Here's a point I'd like to make, even if it's not entirely relevant to this thread. Why the endlessly reiterated insistence, in these forums, that PDF is an awful, horrible format for ebooks?
In a nutshell: PDF has had two main issues related to e-books.

1. PDFs are originally and chiefly designed to maintain the formatting of a document for printing. That means it tends to be a large file, especially when images are involved. The first e-book readers and handheld devices were severely limited in storage space and RAM, and PDFs were almost impossible to read on many devices. As Acrobat has developed further, PDFs have become bloated documents that tend to bog down even the best reading devices short of a full PC.

2. PDF is set to a particular size, usually letter or A4, which is rarely matched by an e-book reader's screen size. Some devices, like Windows-based handhelds can reflow and resize the text in a PDF to fit the smaller screen size. But many other devices cannot reflow or resize PDF text. As a result, your PDF page is either a postage stamp too tiny to read when it is "fit" onto the page, or it must be scrolled left-to-right, then down, to read every line.

The second point is most important these days. Generally what you find is that someone with a dedicated e-book reader must prepare their own PDF files from the original document, at the size specific to their device, in order to make it readable. (I now offer my e-books in RTF, for instance, to facilitate this process for those who desire to do so.) But most e-book reading people try to avoid the hassle of prepping and using PDFs for e-book reading.
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Old 11-25-2007, 01:37 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by schmidt349 View Post
Which edition? Allen? If so it's not terribly useful to anyone except the amateur (which is great, by the way!).

Where'd you get it, by the way? You didn't keyboard it yourself, did you? That would have been a little hard on the wrists.
Good heavens no . It's a version downloaded from Perseus. I am strictly an amateur classicist, and these days rely primarily on on-line sources for my texts (mainly Perseus for Greek, The Latin Library for Latin).
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Old 11-26-2007, 12:28 PM   #35
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But to be honest, it is broken. if you have an eink device with a 6" screen or even an iLiad with a larger screen, you can find some of the Mobipocket format books to be totally useless. Mobipocket is a format created originally for PDA sized screens. if you look at Mobi files that contain images, you will find most of the images are tiny. In some cases, too small to be of any use on a larger screen. If these images are important for the book you are trying to read, you will find the book to be useless in that case as the images will be small and possibly fuzzy. I've seen this problem and the thing to do is to purchase MS Reader format books with images and convert.
This doesn't mean Mobi is "broken," just that larger devices should be using a format better suited for it... like ePub.
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Old 11-26-2007, 12:33 PM   #36
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Lack of stylesheet support and embedded fonts is a pretty huge problem for an e-book format.

I wonder if all those publishers who created e-books for the Kindle created directly Mobipockets versions or epub versions of these books. If Amazon asked for Mobipocket instead of epub, this is a complete waste of time for the publishers...
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Old 11-26-2007, 12:41 PM   #37
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I wonder if all those publishers who created e-books for the Kindle created directly Mobipockets versions or epub versions of these books. If Amazon asked for Mobipocket instead of epub, this is a complete waste of time for the publishers...
I know I've uploaded my books to Kindle in Mobi format, and the only thing I changed was the size of the cover (larger). However, they'll also accept Word Doc and HTML, and possibly other formats, so you're not limited to Mobi. I don't know that Amazon will accept ePub files, but I've seen no reference to them on the site.

Of course, once Amazon has them, they are converted to HTML, so you have the makings of an ePub file anyway.
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Old 11-26-2007, 12:53 PM   #38
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I wonder if all those publishers who created e-books for the Kindle created directly Mobipockets versions or epub versions of these books.
MobiPocket Creator uses OEB as its base format and only produces a MOBI file once the e-book is completed. Similarly, mobigen.exe can take the .opf file from a OEB e-book as its starting point. I don't think major publishers are likely to use Creator exclusively, but it may be at the end of their production chain for MOBI e-books. A MOBI e-book with JPEG images is essentially an AZW e-book, so that may be the "best" upload option to Amazon.
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Old 11-26-2007, 01:20 PM   #39
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This doesn't mean Mobi is "broken," just that larger devices should be using a format better suited for it... like ePub.
But why support a format that is designed for small screens when you have a larger screen?
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Old 11-26-2007, 02:21 PM   #40
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But why support a format that is designed for small screens when you have a larger screen?
Well, you've got me there. I'm sure Amazon wanted an existing format (less trouble), and no other formats satisfied them. Maybe others might have worked better, such as MS Reader, LRF, or even PDF, but licensing them from MS, Adobe or Sony would have been too expensive/too much hassle.

I can only guess Mobi was the most convenient ready-made format that they could obtain and use quickly, plain and simple.

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Old 11-26-2007, 02:35 PM   #41
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Creating an epub file and a Mobipocket file is quite different from a publisher point of view.

For the epub version, they can embed and use fonts like on a real book, add some extra formatting and support a lot more metadata.

That's the main reason why it's much better if publishers did create their e-books using epub, and then Amazon converted these files to Mobipocket. Part of the information is lost during this process, but at least these books are ready for epub or any other format.
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Old 11-26-2007, 03:36 PM   #42
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That's the main reason why it's much better if publishers did create their e-books using epub, and then Amazon converted these files to Mobipocket. Part of the information is lost during this process, but at least these books are ready for epub or any other format.
I think that logic goes pretty much for all publishers and e-book formats.
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Old 11-26-2007, 03:38 PM   #43
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I don't think Mobi was specifically "designed" for small screens. It's just where it was mostly used and that's why most mobi files tend to include "safe-sized" pictures. If you include bigger pictures, it will look fine on bigger screens too.
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Old 11-27-2007, 06:39 PM   #44
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If you have a Mobi format book with say images sized for a 6" eink screen and you try to read this book on a PDA, will the images bee too large or will they be resized for the smaller screen?
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Old 11-27-2007, 06:52 PM   #45
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MobiPocket's documentation indicates that large images will be resized. I confirmed that this was the case if you made the window very small on a PC, but I don't have a PDA to test on. See Images in MobiPocket.

A related issue is which devices support JPEG images in MOBI files, since these are typically needed to get large images. The "StandMars" PRC files in the above thread should work on the Kindle (mine arrives tomorrow), and can test MobiPocket's PDA reader software for JPEG support.
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