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View Poll Results: Do you prefer blank lines after all paragraphs in an ebook?
Yes. Strong preference for one after all paragraphs. 19 25.00%
Yes, but it's not a big deal to me. 15 19.74%
No, but it's not a big deal to me. 19 25.00%
No. Strong preference for no blank lines. 23 30.26%
Voters: 76. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-31-2008, 11:43 AM   #16
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Old 11-01-2008, 06:40 AM   #17
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My preference is for indention and no blank lines, as in most printed books.

In the mobipocket ebooks I've made, I enclose every paragraph in <P></P> tags (that's what they are for, after all). It should be a feature of the reader to display the paragraphs as the user prefers. The default seems to be some indentation and a little bit (much less than a line) of vertical space. My Cybook currently does not allow this to be changed, but I wish it did, and I would keep the indentation and set the spacing to none.

The defaults can be overriden for specific paragraphs. The first paragraph in a chapter, for instance, has a larger space above and no indent, so it is <P WIDTH="0em" HEIGHT="2em"></P>
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Old 11-01-2008, 09:50 AM   #18
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I prefer the blank line because it makes it easier for me to read ebooks on my Sony 505. As I get older, the eyes don't work as well. I also prefer slightly wider margins. Truthfully, I find most of the ebooks I buy from Sony Connect to be formatted for my reading tastes -- except for the font size. I wish all ebooks were formatted in 11 point base font and that any footnotes also be formatted in that same size. I am currently reading a trilogy about the civil rights movement in the U.S. and am always dismayed when I have to go to an explanatory footnote because the font size is so small, making it difficult to read.
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Old 11-01-2008, 10:09 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by rhadin View Post
I prefer the blank line because it makes it easier for me to read ebooks on my Sony 505. As I get older, the eyes don't work as well. I also prefer slightly wider margins. Truthfully, I find most of the ebooks I buy from Sony Connect to be formatted for my reading tastes -- except for the font size. I wish all ebooks were formatted in 11 point base font and that any footnotes also be formatted in that same size. I am currently reading a trilogy about the civil rights movement in the U.S. and am always dismayed when I have to go to an explanatory footnote because the font size is so small, making it difficult to read.
Isn't that one major benefit of an eBook reader over a printed book, though - the fact that when your eyes do get tired, or you're reading in poor light, that you can make the text larger?
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Old 11-01-2008, 06:24 PM   #20
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Yes, the important point is that paragraphs need to be delineated in some fashion, whether it be by an indent, or by extra spacing. By default, with most Mobi implementations, you get both - an indented first line and about half a line spacing between paragraphs.
It is generally 2 pixels more between paragraphs I believe. It seems not to be related to font size.

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Old 11-01-2008, 06:32 PM   #21
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I want to be as close the the pbook experience as I can get with my ebooks. For me, that means spaces after paragraphs and margins around the sides.
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Old 11-01-2008, 06:43 PM   #22
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I prefer a bit of a gap, but not a whole line's height, between paragraphs, but I'm not fussed if it's not there, so long as the first line of the paragraph is indented. And I realise most (all?) fiction isn't published that way, so for that I really don't mind; but for non-fiction it's really helpful to have a bit of a gap.

Last edited by ShortNCuddlyAm; 11-02-2008 at 08:45 AM. Reason: Edited for clarification. Except I think I've been less clear ;)
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Old 11-02-2008, 04:01 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daffy4u View Post
I want to be as close the the pbook experience as I can get with my ebooks. For me, that means spaces after paragraphs and margins around the sides.
But do you want a gap of a whole line between paragraphs? Very few - if any - pbooks have that.
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Old 11-02-2008, 06:20 AM   #24
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Strong preference against the blank line in my case: I want the typesetting of my e-books to be like a book, not a webpage. That means indented paragraphs, margins and hyphenation.
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Old 11-02-2008, 08:27 AM   #25
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For fiction I do not want to have blank lines since I think it indicates a distance in content that is not there for fiction. For technical papers I want to have a blank line between paragraph since each paragraph usually have a purpose and a blank line help to indicate that you should understand the whole paragraph before you continue.
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Old 11-02-2008, 08:55 AM   #26
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I find it interesting that I had assumed that most pbooks have some additional space after each paragraph. I assumed that because ebooks just look wrong on my Sony without that extra space. But Harry's right. I've checked dozens of my pbooks and haven't found one yet with that extra space. Curious how the mind works.

And now that I've looked at this some, I find that I don't like the tiny margins in the ebooks I've been making. And then there are those ugly fonts. sigh.
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Old 11-02-2008, 09:01 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rhadin View Post
I prefer the blank line because it makes it easier for me to read ebooks on my Sony 505. As I get older, the eyes don't work as well.
Same for me.

I notice all the responses on the forum have a space between paragraphs.
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Old 11-02-2008, 09:33 AM   #28
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The results are interesting, here's what I think: we should avoid blank lines between paragraphs in the source of the e-books BUT reading system should allow us to tweak the spacing between paragraphs. In both Mobipocket and ePub, this can be easily modified using CSS properties.
I might extend also at some point the settings for customized PDFs on Feedbooks with "advanced settings" too, this could be one of the options available.
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Old 11-02-2008, 10:43 AM   #29
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The think is, if you do use blank lines, then you'll have to make sure that blank line separators are at least two lines and easily distinguished from a blank line. Also some books start the first paragraph of a section with no indent. That too sometimes must be taken into account. And in a book like that, having no paragraph indents will lose the format if the first paragraph of a section with no paragraph indent.

I personally prefer no extra blank lines and paragraph indents. I like to have more text per screen for less screen turns. I did read one book that was posted here with blank lines between paragraphs and no indents. It did bug me when I was reading it. When there are a lot of short lines, that's when it's most annoying to me.

However, if you are using Book Designer to make an LRF eBook then you can make two copies, one with lines and one without. But as I stated above, you'd then have to sort out possible issues with the formatting if you make a book with blank lines.
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Old 11-02-2008, 11:30 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
But do you want a gap of a whole line between paragraphs? Very few - if any - pbooks have that.
"I want to be as close the the pbook experience as I can get with my ebooks."

Whatever spacing there is in pbooks is what I want.
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