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Old 10-04-2012, 05:27 PM   #16
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Regardless of table support in MOBIPocket vs Kindle1 vs Kindle2, my point is that it's not nearly time to start abandoning all concern for the older MOBI format/devices entirely (which is the impression I got from Oxford-eBooks). I myself, will continue to ensure that the MOBI portion of the hybrid MOBI/KF8 file is flawless and as visually appealing as possible; for as long as Amazon continues to sell ebooks for devices that only support the MOBI format (which I expect to be a good long time, yet). I would encourage other content creators to so the same.

Just worrying about the KF8 formatting being right and letting the MOBI portion just "happen" without a glance at—or concern about—its quality/viability is an example of shoddy craftsmanship, IMO. If that format (MOBI) is available to be delivered to the device of a customer who PAID FOR that ebook (and it is available if you're converting with Kindlegen and uploading to KDP), then you have a responsibility to make that MOBI version as good an experience as possible for that customer.

It's not nearly time to start selling ebooks whose creators just didn't know/care that the same code that creates pretty dropcaps in KF8 (or a tables that looks spectacular in KF8) will look atrocious in the MOBI version if you don't handle it correctly with the special media-queries that Amazon provides for such situations.

As long as people can still purchase your ebook in the boring old MOBI format ... then I feel you should still be concerned about the MOBI format looking smart.

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Old 10-05-2012, 03:56 AM   #17
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Goodness me, DiapDealer I hope you're not accusing me of shoddy workmanship there!
All our eBooks are validated properly and checked against all Kindle types before being passed to our clients.
90% of the books that are commissioned are straight text, and naturally will easily be supported on all formats without any degredation whatsoever - and yes, Fancy dropcaps and the like ALWAYS degrade gracefully on all devices.
However, some books DO contain fancy formatting, some books aren't run of the mill and contain diagrams, tables etc. There's usually a way to make such things work on the older devices but it wouldn't be commercially viable to hobble the book that will be enjoyed by an overwhealmingly large proportion of the readership.
We as content creators need to be respectful of the existing device owners as they were the early adopters that helped to build the success of the industry - but it is also our duty to responsibly push forwards, to allow our publisher clients to sell books with richer content (not all books are story books, remember) to try to make their titles stand out amongst fierce competition.
Amazon seem to be bravely trying to throw off the shackles of their old, limited format and I applaud them for doing so.
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Old 10-05-2012, 04:32 AM   #18
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I myself, will continue to ensure that the MOBI portion of the hybrid MOBI/KF8 file is flawless and as visually appealing as possible; for as long as Amazon continues to sell ebooks for devices that only support the MOBI format (which I expect to be a good long time, yet). I would encourage other content creators to so the same.
Quite agree. But please can you tell me which devices Amazon still sells that don't support KF8? Is that just the DX? (I would be annoyed if I had a DX, and they don't upgrade it.)
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Old 10-05-2012, 05:05 AM   #19
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Quite agree. But please can you tell me which devices Amazon still sells that don't support KF8? Is that just the DX? (I would be annoyed if I had a DX, and they don't upgrade it.)
Yes, it's just the DX (which is basically a Kindle 2).
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Old 10-05-2012, 07:32 AM   #20
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Goodness me, DiapDealer I hope you're not accusing me of shoddy workmanship there!
All our eBooks are validated properly and checked against all Kindle types before being passed to our clients.
90% of the books that are commissioned are straight text, and naturally will easily be supported on all formats without any degredation whatsoever - and yes, Fancy dropcaps and the like ALWAYS degrade gracefully on all devices.
However, some books DO contain fancy formatting, some books aren't run of the mill and contain diagrams, tables etc. There's usually a way to make such things work on the older devices but it wouldn't be commercially viable to hobble the book that will be enjoyed by an overwhealmingly large proportion of the readership.
We as content creators need to be respectful of the existing device owners as they were the early adopters that helped to build the success of the industry - but it is also our duty to responsibly push forwards, to allow our publisher clients to sell books with richer content (not all books are story books, remember) to try to make their titles stand out amongst fierce competition.
Amazon seem to be bravely trying to throw off the shackles of their old, limited format and I applaud them for doing so.
No accusations at all. Just reacting to comments like:

Quote:
tables don't work on them.
But hey, I think we can all move on from those now.
Among others whose tenor/tone certainly sounded like; "just take advantage of the new KF8 features and if it doesn't happen to work on the older devices... oh well."

My apologies if that's not the case. I certainly don't expect anyone to "hobble" the KF8 version of an ebook simply because the older MOBI format won't support a necessary formatting feature that KF8 does allow for. I only expect them to make every effort to "gracefully" downgrade the MOBI version with the tools provided for just such situations. Rather than simply letting the MOBI chips "fall where they may."

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Old 10-10-2012, 04:17 AM   #21
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Goodness me, DiapDealer I hope you're not accusing me of shoddy workmanship there!
All our eBooks are validated properly and checked against all Kindle types before being passed to our clients.
90% of the books that are commissioned are straight text, and naturally will easily be supported on all formats without any degredation whatsoever - and yes, Fancy dropcaps and the like ALWAYS degrade gracefully on all devices.
However, some books DO contain fancy formatting, some books aren't run of the mill and contain diagrams, tables etc. There's usually a way to make such things work on the older devices but it wouldn't be commercially viable to hobble the book that will be enjoyed by an overwhealmingly large proportion of the readership.
We as content creators need to be respectful of the existing device owners as they were the early adopters that helped to build the success of the industry - but it is also our duty to responsibly push forwards, to allow our publisher clients to sell books with richer content (not all books are story books, remember) to try to make their titles stand out amongst fierce competition.
Amazon seem to be bravely trying to throw off the shackles of their old, limited format and I applaud them for doing so.
I'm quite certain that you and Apple's iBooks Author will have a wonderful relationship. Amazon isn't "bravely" or otherwise throwing off anything. The vast majority of Kindle devices in existence are STILL e-ink Kindles of the first and second generations, plus the DX--not the later models. Take a poll of any reader group that isn't downloading free content (e.g., freebies from Smashwords or Wattpad, etc., over iPhones) and you'll find a gigantic happy block of K1 and K2 owners who have no intention of upgrading until the damn things die.

Moreover, the "issues" of conversion with tables, diagrams, etc., have virtually nothing whatsoever to do with the format, or the age of the device (barring the "oh, I forgot this was a table"-brain of mobi devices); it's the screensize, and nothing else. if I get one book a week to quote that has 20lbs. of flour trying to jam itself into a 5lb sack, I get 10. I turned down this one guy who bugged me non-stop for months, INSISTING that I "didn't get it" when he repeatedly tried to explain to me how his 10" x 10" diagrams were going to work perfectly on regular e-reading devices. Finally, to save my mind, I sent him to Josh, who I'm pretty sure will forgive me by...2014, if not sooner. ;-) (Seriously, I did. But not to torture Josh. I just figured maybe he'd believe it if a second person told him the same things. Odin knows, I couldn't get him to bloody listen, and I won't take a book if I think it will come out like the dog's breakfast). It's not the format; it's the size of the devices that's the major hurdle in setting diagrams, tables, and other elements. We've had hundreds of books with thousands of tables, design elements, lists, text-boxes...you name it; and they all manage to survive out there in the wastes of K-1/2 Mobi-Land. ;-) I think the idea of just chucking MOBI 7 for the ease of K8 is...well, lacking.

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Old 10-10-2012, 05:15 AM   #22
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The vast majority of Kindle devices in existence are STILL e-ink Kindles of the first and second generations, plus the DX--not the later models.
I'd be very surprised if that were true, Hitch. The popularity of the Kindle has really only taken off since the K3, and don't forget that the K1/2 were only ever sold in the US, so virtually all non-US sales will be K3 or later.

Of course there are still K1s and K2s out there, but to say that they comprise the "vast majority" of Kindles in use is unlikely to be true, to my mind.
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Old 10-10-2012, 06:48 AM   #23
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I'd be very surprised if that were true, Hitch. The popularity of the Kindle has really only taken off since the K3, and don't forget that the K1/2 were only ever sold in the US, so virtually all non-US sales will be K3 or later.
The K2 was initially a US only device, but it was quickly followed up with the K2 "International" version.
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Old 10-10-2012, 04:49 PM   #24
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I'd be very surprised if that were true, Hitch. The popularity of the Kindle has really only taken off since the K3, and don't forget that the K1/2 were only ever sold in the US, so virtually all non-US sales will be K3 or later.

Of course there are still K1s and K2s out there, but to say that they comprise the "vast majority" of Kindles in use is unlikely to be true, to my mind.
Every single UK client I have has a K2 (and we're fairly well-established there, I'm not talking 1-2 clients). Not a Sony, or other reader. Also about....80% of my "European" clients (continental). I am consistently and constantly surprised at the dominance of the Amazon device in Europe, at least, amongst my clientele.

I truly think that some of us, who read ePUBs predominantly, underestimate the true market reach of the Kindle devices, particularly the nice, long-battery-life, e-inks.

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Old 10-15-2012, 02:10 PM   #25
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The Kindle for iPhone displays Mobi 7 and not Mobi8 (KF8). Not sure when this will change. Also,the Kindle for iPad seems to display a weird combination of Mobi7 and Mobi8 formatting. I am designing with the KF8 format with some allowances in code for the Mobi7 format.
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Old 10-15-2012, 04:00 PM   #26
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The Kindle for iPhone displays Mobi 7 and not Mobi8 (KF8). Not sure when this will change. Also,the Kindle for iPad seems to display a weird combination of Mobi7 and Mobi8 formatting. I am designing with the KF8 format with some allowances in code for the Mobi7 format.
Susan:

Lots of luck with that. We've had a serious issue with the iPad's display (via the Kindle readers) of both 7 & 8 element attributes. We had an utter boondoggle with a border for a damn table that we tried to use for something else--I forget what, now. It worked a treat for everything but "Kindle for iPad," and we tested it on devices, Previewer, you-name-it...never could get it to work. No amount of media-queries, setting the element styling to hidden...nothing worked. It persisted in showing both K7 & K8 styling(s). Very bizarre.

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Old 11-07-2012, 05:15 PM   #27
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This is simply not true. Not true at all. I'm looking at an example of a working (albeit very simple) table right now, on my big old white Kindle. My big old white Kindle that I read on every single day, and have no immediate intentions of "moving on from."

Besides, even with the new miracle KF8 format, it's pretty easy to break an ill-thought out tabular layout by an end user simply increasing the font size.

While I do recommend upgrading to the newer KF8 format wherever possible, I still think it's important that content creators make every effort to ensure that their ebooks' fall-back MOBI versions function correctly and are formatted consistently with—and at least visually similar to—the KF8 version. Mainly because: it's not really all that hard to do ... so don't be lazy and skip that step simply because you don't think it's going to affect very many people.
There are lots of people using the older Kindles. And Kindle Fire is not available in Canada (or wasn't the last time I checked) because of licensing issues for video and audio. Is Kindle Fire available in Britian?
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Old 11-07-2012, 05:28 PM   #28
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Regardless of table support in MOBIPocket vs Kindle1 vs Kindle2, my point is that it's not nearly time to start abandoning all concern for the older MOBI format/devices entirely (which is the impression I got from Oxford-eBooks). I myself, will continue to ensure that the MOBI portion of the hybrid MOBI/KF8 file is flawless and as visually appealing as possible; for as long as Amazon continues to sell ebooks for devices that only support the MOBI format (which I expect to be a good long time, yet). I would encourage other content creators to so the same.

Just worrying about the KF8 formatting being right and letting the MOBI portion just "happen" without a glance at—or concern about—its quality/viability is an example of shoddy craftsmanship, IMO. If that format (MOBI) is available to be delivered to the device of a customer who PAID FOR that ebook (and it is available if you're converting with Kindlegen and uploading to KDP), then you have a responsibility to make that MOBI version as good an experience as possible for that customer.

It's not nearly time to start selling ebooks whose creators just didn't know/care that the same code that creates pretty dropcaps in KF8 (or a tables that looks spectacular in KF8) will look atrocious in the MOBI version if you don't handle it correctly with the special media-queries that Amazon provides for such situations.

As long as people can still purchase your ebook in the boring old MOBI format ... then I feel you should still be concerned about the MOBI format looking smart.
Hi D!

I find that if I make it look good in KF8, then it is difficult to format for Mobi7 because of the HTML tagging. Any advice on how to make a nice looking Mobi at the same time as a decent KF8?
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Old 11-07-2012, 10:23 PM   #29
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Hi D!

I find that if I make it look good in KF8, then it is difficult to format for Mobi7 because of the HTML tagging. Any advice on how to make a nice looking Mobi at the same time as a decent KF8?
Not difficult. Just a bit of a learning curve (and possibly a bit more time consuming).
The Kindle Publishing Guidelines gives several examples of how to use media queries to target the two different formats using the same source code.

Judicious use of media queries in conjunction with the "display:none" CSS attribute can be used to tailor the look of both formats (as well as ePub if done properly). I tend to use entirely different stylesheets for each format and then import the correct one using the special media-queries provided by Amazon -- the fourth method described in the Publishing Guidelines (section 8).
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