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Old 06-28-2013, 08:49 PM   #1
jgoguen
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To KePub or not to KePub

That is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to write a GUI plugin or a File Type plugin. (With apologies to Hamlet, who has enough problems without modern mutilation of a perfectly good soliloquy )

I've been approached about enabling conversion to KePub without requiring a device present; basically, generate the file and send it to a specific folder. I have no objection to doing this, but I can't do it with a device driver. I'm looking for opinions from people who use more of calibre's potential than I do (that probably means you!) on the best way to enable this. Should this be a GUI plugin, a file type plugin, or something else entirely, and why? I've had some ideas about the benefits and potential issues of both a GUI plugin and a file type plugin, but all that's done is leave uncertain about which idea is better!
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:21 PM   #2
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Old 06-29-2013, 05:42 AM   #3
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Oh I'm not saying to expect to see anything in the next few months or anything . I'm just trying at this point to get a handle on how to eventually do it.
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Old 06-30-2013, 02:17 AM   #4
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I know I was against it before, but I've been starting to think that adding kepub as a format would be a good idea. So, I think a file type plugin would be the way to go.
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Old 07-01-2013, 11:19 AM   #5
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I don't think I would use it, only because I want my backups to be in a non-proprietary format. I know I could do a later conversion, if necessary, but would rather not have to do that.
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Old 07-01-2013, 11:48 AM   #6
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This would be a second plugin that happens to share a lot of the same code with the Kobo Touch Extended driver. My recommendation for people using it, unless Kobo gives me their KePub generation code, would be to not delete their ePub (or whatever other format) copies of any KePub books.

Although I'm not sure it's fair to call KePub entirely proprietary. Kobo's use of it definitely is, but I see no reason why any compliant ePub reader couldn't make full use of a properly created KePub file. That "properly created" bit being the key reason I would strongly recommend having some other format as your backup copy of course
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Old 07-01-2013, 08:20 PM   #7
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Joel, someone reported that their Sony could download (with almost full functionality) books over USB from Kobo desktop. It may have been a blip. How proprietary kepub turns out may depend on what direction they are going with epub3 and adobe epub, also if they are planning to be able to sync any kepub (regardless of how it may have started out or where it was obtained). It will be interesting to see how it unfolds.
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Old 07-01-2013, 09:38 PM   #8
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Since Kobo is involved with Readium, I have high hopes that the KePub format will eventually go away or become a secondary format for older devices and Kobo will use EPUB3 features in place of the KePub extensions. KePub made sense in the context of EPUB2, which has no support for tracking a location in a book among other things, but EPUB3 has this and more. I don't believe there's anything a KePub enables that isn't covered by EPUB3. EPUB3 even has a draft spec for a standard digital restrictions mechanism scheme, compliments of the Readium LCP draft, which should keep happy anyone that still thinks that sort of thing has any benefits.

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Old 07-01-2013, 09:59 PM   #9
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That is roughly my thoughts as well. Apart from the reading location and DRM, the ACCESS reader could be used for all epubs. To get around the reading location, they could implement the epub3 method for epub2. This is what the calibre reader uses and it seems to work there. But, waiting from the Readium implementation probably makes sense at this point.
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Old 07-04-2013, 05:35 AM   #10
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I don't think that kepub will disappear, regardless of readmium, as long as they have to differentiate between books bought from Kobo that sync and books that are sideloaded and do not. I also can't see Kobo being willing to pay adobe unnecessarily, so unless something supplants ADE DRM when the readmium folks get done, my guess is that we will continue to see two different formats--perhaps with almost no difference between them other than what i have noted above.
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Old 07-04-2013, 05:58 AM   #11
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I also can't see Kobo being willing to pay adobe unnecessarily, so unless something supplants ADE DRM when the readmium folks get done
That, I believe, will be the LCP draft I mentioned. The technical details of that are in this document (PDF).

Not that I think Kobo will flip a switch and one day start sending all their books as EPUB3 (or whatever actually comes out of Readium) and stop KePub distribution entirely, rather I think it will be a slow move and one day we'll realize that we haven't seen a real KePub in a while. Alternatively, Kobo may still call it "KePub" but under the hood it's actually all EPUB3 and shiny. Assuming, of course, that Kobo would convert all of their existing KePubs to the new format
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Old 07-04-2013, 07:13 AM   #12
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I don't think I would use it, only because I want my backups to be in a non-proprietary format. I know I could do a later conversion, if necessary, but would rather not have to do that.
Same here. I'm perfactly fine with the way the TouchExtended driver does it now, kobo-izing my epubs on the fly (as I prefer the ACCESS renderer, especially the handling of foot/endnotes) and keeping standard epubs in Calibre.
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