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Old 03-25-2013, 09:15 AM   #1081
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20+ hour bus journey through rural country side with spotty cell connection and barely working 2G connections
See, I got into trouble earlier in this thread for saying this, but when making my recommendations of Dropbox/SugarSync, my assumption is that folks asking for recommendations operate under what might today be called "standard circumstances" (at least for the "first world"). I believe it's safe to assume that most iPad owners don't routinely, on a day-to-day basis engage in "20+ hour bus journeys through rural countrysides with spotty connections" -- that strikes me more as an exception than the rule for the present day, I'd say. Of course, under such extraordinary circumstances, standard advice doesn't always apply.

I definitely understand what you're saying, though: whenever I travel long-distance myself, I trust neither my iPad, and certainly not my iPhone -- their battery life just can't handle such long distances. So, in addition to my iPad and iPhone, I always take a hardware Kindle device along, to be absolutely guaranteed I have something to read even if something unforeseen happens during the journey. (And I did unexpectedly get stuck in Hungarian countryside for hours, without any Internet access, when I was travelling to Romania last October.)

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Old 03-25-2013, 09:40 AM   #1082
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PPS: I read about this app called ShuBook or something that's coming up as a nice Stanza replacement (I've heard/ read a lot about stanza). How does that compare to Marvin?

Some people on that thread said it was better? I am curious.
As a user of stanza and shubook I can confirm that Marvin 1.3 is a much better ePub reader than the other two. On the other hand, stanza and shubook will let you read a large number of formats that Marvin doesn't support.

So basically,

- for ePub use Marvin, it offers the best reading experience above iBook, Stanza and Shubook.
- for other formats use the best there is. Stanza and Shubook are pretty good. The development of Shubook is still taking place, Stanza is just upgraded to the latest Ios version.

By the way, as far as i know Marvin will let you open other formats in other readers.
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Old 03-25-2013, 09:49 AM   #1083
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maxjens, Wouldn't you tap the book in the library to open it? Again, sorry of I'm misunderstanding. If you opened the book from the library and from the book you go back, you'll be taken to the library.
Kguil, i understand your confusion. I mixed two things and that made my request unclear.

First, in the book view I would love to be able to choose to go to the home screen or the library screen. This would need an extra button on the book screen next to the home button.

Two, in the library view I would love the option to go to the book screen, without selecting the book or going back to the home screen. Now i understood that you are adding a favorites list in the library view, this would help if the book i am reading is on that list. Otherwise it takes a little while to find the right book.

The first request is for me more important, then the second.
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Old 03-25-2013, 10:02 AM   #1084
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Stanza is just upgraded to the latest Ios version.
Unfortunately, it isn't. The last time Amazon upgraded Stanza was a couple of years ago or so, for iOS 5. Stanza on iOS 6 is partly dysfunctional -- it's crippleware today. (It crashes whenever you touch 3 of its 4 settings buttons.)

ShuBook tries hard, and its developer strikes me as a nice, hard-working guy, but ShuBook is not on a par with Stanza, and especially now Marvin -- not by a long shot. Marvin, already today, is 10 times better than Stanza ever was; and ShuBook still needs to catch up with Stanza first.

A crucial feature missing in ShuBook are annotations. Without annotations, any e-reader software is useless for me.

ShuBook has also struggled with opening/displaying some EPUB files properly (skipping chapters, etc.), and it even fails at the proper display of this basic formatting EPUB test file:

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/10440809/mi...alic-bold.epub

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First, in the book view I would love to be able to choose to go to the home screen or the library screen. This would need an extra button on the book screen next to the home button.
I agree with your request, maxjens, but Kris is already working on Marvin for iPhone, and space for buttons is at a premium. Kris wants the Marvin version for iPhone to offer the exact same advanced features as Marvin for iPad does, and this will be a nightmare to achieve, given the iPhone's much smaller screen size. It might become difficult to add additional buttons to Marvin's current interface. (Not difficult on the iPad, perhaps, but very much so on the iPhone.)

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Two, in the library view I would love the option to go to the book screen
I'm confused here as well. What do you mean by "book screen"?

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Now i understood that you are adding a favorites list in the library view, this would help if the book i am reading is on that list.
Absolutely. In Marvin 1.4, there'll be a special new, virtual folder called Reading List, into which you can put any books to which you always wish to have quick access.

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Old 03-25-2013, 12:04 PM   #1085
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I'm confused here as well. What do you mean by "book screen"? :
This screen, it shows the content of a book, ergo book screen. Ok looked in the tutorial, there it is called the Book view.
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Old 03-25-2013, 12:17 PM   #1086
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Unfortunately, it isn't. The last time Amazon upgraded Stanza was a couple of years ago or so, for iOS 5. Stanza on iOS 6 is partly dysfunctional -- it's crippleware today.
I meant there is little to no development.

I think i also stated that Marvin was the better reader for epubs. For other types of ebooks Stanza and Shubook are the better readers currently available. And as was stated, just stay out of the settings page
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Old 03-25-2013, 12:56 PM   #1087
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maxjens, OK now I understand. At some point, I will be revising the toolbar in the book and will keep your request in mind.

Yes, the next update will feature things such as smart collections, a reading list, custom collections, etc... This will make it much easier to pick the current book from the library and open it (especially if you're sorted by date last opened).
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Old 03-26-2013, 12:05 AM   #1088
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I meant there is little to no development.
There is absolute zero development regarding Stanza. Amazon bought it in order to put it to sleep -- so it doesn't compete with Kindle. Very sad but true. Not the first time Amazon did that -- they did the same thing to Mobipocket Reader a few years earlier. But their Kindle software is still crappy, worse than both Stanza and Mobipocket Reader, even after all these years.

Some of us have expressed related worries earlier in this thread: what if Amazon sends a couple of friendly lawyers to Kris, kindly asking him to stop developing Marvin, in exchange for (say) a million dollars, so that Kris no longer has to worry about anything at all, money-wise, for the rest of his life? Who could blame anyone for accepting such an offer? I know I couldn't... and so I don't blame the good folks who gave us Stanza and Mobipocket Reader for the many years while they still lasted.

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For other types of ebooks Stanza and Shubook are the better readers currently available.
Just curious, what "other types" of books do you have in mind? I hate PDFs, but I often can't avoid them, because they are the only option -- but I'd never read PDFs in either Stanza or ShuBook, as they are totally inferior to such superb PDF apps as GoodReader and PDF Expert.

The only other book type I can think of you might be referring to, are comic books (CBR/CBZ), and Kris has hinted he considers supporting that format in Marvin in future. As to MOBI books, the preferred way, of course, is to convert them into EPUB (which only takes a few seconds in Calibre), and enjoy them in Marvin.
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Old 03-26-2013, 03:20 AM   #1089
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Just curious, what "other types" of books do you have in mind?
Just a few formats: CBR, DOC, IMP, LIT, MOBI, PDB, PRC, RTF AND TXT. And offcource epub and pdf.

For comics i would suggest ComicBook. Mobi can be read by the kindle app. There is probably a reader for every extention, but shubook just reads almost all of them. Its just easier, not better.

Hope Marvin sticks to ePubs, for that it is the best. If you try to support all formats, the chances are the app will become good at none.
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Old 03-26-2013, 06:05 AM   #1090
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Originally Posted by Faterson View Post
There is absolute zero development regarding Stanza. Amazon bought it in order to put it to sleep -- so it doesn't compete with Kindle. Very sad but true. Not the first time Amazon did that -- they did the same thing to Mobipocket Reader a few years earlier. But their Kindle software is still crappy, worse than both Stanza and Mobipocket Reader, even after all these years.

Some of us have expressed related worries earlier in this thread: what if Amazon sends a couple of friendly lawyers to Kris, kindly asking him to stop developing Marvin, in exchange for (say) a million dollars, so that Kris no longer has to worry about anything at all, money-wise, for the rest of his life? Who could blame anyone for accepting such an offer? I know I couldn't... and so I don't blame the good folks who gave us Stanza and Mobipocket Reader for the many years while they still lasted.


Just curious, what "other types" of books do you have in mind? I hate PDFs, but I often can't avoid them, because they are the only option -- but I'd never read PDFs in either Stanza or ShuBook, as they are totally inferior to such superb PDF apps as GoodReader and PDF Expert.

The only other book type I can think of you might be referring to, are comic books (CBR/CBZ), and Kris has hinted he considers supporting that format in Marvin in future. As to MOBI books, the preferred way, of course, is to convert them into EPUB (which only takes a few seconds in Calibre), and enjoy them in Marvin.
Most of my books and white papers are PDF so that's something I have to deal with as well.

What is the best PDF reader and Highlight and/ or Annotation app on the iPad as per you?

Can any of them "keep separate" or "merge' highlights / annotations and maybe be able to Backup/ Sync/ Save them?
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Old 03-26-2013, 07:43 AM   #1091
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Can't PDF's be converted into EPub using Calibre?
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Old 03-26-2013, 08:46 AM   #1092
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Can't PDF's be converted into EPub using Calibre?
Badly, if the PDF is multi-column, has images, or is really anything other than simple text.
(Not a knock on calibre, but there is no good way of converting complex layout PDFs to reflowable formats.)
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Old 03-26-2013, 10:33 AM   #1093
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Can't PDF's be converted into EPub using Calibre?
If you are talking about ebooks, basically one column text with some grafics. Then calibre can convert them pretty good. In general those pdf's were converted from another format to pdf. Magazines etc with multi column etc will become strange looking documents.

Here you can find more info: http://manual.calibre-ebook.com/conv...#pdfconversion

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Old 03-26-2013, 10:36 AM   #1094
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Gotcha, I have just started playing with Calibre
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Old 03-26-2013, 09:12 PM   #1095
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Just curious, what "other types" of books do you have in mind?
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Just a few formats: CBR, DOC, IMP, LIT, MOBI, PDB, PRC, RTF AND TXT. And offcource epub and pdf.
Erm, I apologize for saying this, maxjens, but that's nonsense. You're not suggesting that anyone with a sane mind would read unconverted DOC, LIT, PDB, RTF, TXT (etc.) files (especially long books!) on their iDevice?

Of course not... The first thing to do, is to convert those other formats into EPUB (it only takes a few seconds in Calibre), and then read those files using the best e-reader software that there is -- and that's Marvin.

That also applies to MOBI -- reading e-books in the Kindle app is so excruciating (at least to me) that it's definitely worth converting the MOBI book into an EPUB book (it only takes a few seconds in Calibre), in order to be able to read the book in Marvin.

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Originally Posted by Faterson View Post
Hope Marvin sticks to ePubs
I for one hope Marvin will add support for the comics format (CBR/CBZ).

Naturally, I'd welcome if Marvin also supported reading PDF files, because right now I'm "Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde" every single day: all the books I read, are split between two pieces of software -- Marvin (for EPUB files) and GoodReader (for PDF files).

However, becoming as excellent as GoodReader will be extremely tough to achieve for any software maker. In this sense, it might be more reasonable for Marvin just to forget about PDF support, and focus on EPUBs, like you say.

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What is the best PDF reader and Highlight and/ or Annotation app on the iPad as per you?
Hands down, it's GoodReader. I've already replied to you on this topic in the other thread you started.

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Can any of them "keep separate" or "merge' highlights / annotations and maybe be able to Backup/ Sync/ Save them?
Yes, GoodReader does everything you need to do regarding annotations. Its iCloud syncing of annotations works fantastically between my two iPads and the iPhone.

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Can't PDF's be converted into EPub using Calibre?
It's ironic, but I have had better results when converting PDFs, using the outdated Mobipocket Reader, rather than Calibre. (The Mobipocket Reader install file for Windows is here.)

Here is an important thing to realize -- there are two types of PDF files:
  1. PDF files that are originally text files and are then simply saved as PDF (often due to the cluelessness of the author of the text)
  2. PDF files that are simply collections of images, photographs (includes all scanned/photographed books/documents)
Good luck trying to convert PDF files of the 2nd type! It's practically impossible -- the result will often be many typos on every page (or even line) of text. The best-quality OCR software is required to try and deal with this task, such as ABBYY FineReader -- but even then, lots of post-processing is typically required on the part of the user.

Even converting PDF files of type 1 often has bad results.

Generally, I avoid PDF files like the plague. PDFs are not a suitable format for e-books. I mostly only read PDF files of the 2nd type -- those that cannot possibly be reasonably converted from PDF into EPUB, without a tremendous loss of time on the part of the person who performs the conversion.

Last edited by Faterson; 03-26-2013 at 09:15 PM.
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