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View Poll Results: ePub Creation
I currently produce ePub but not LRF 12 22.64%
I currently produce LRF but not ePub 20 37.74%
I currently produce ePub and LRF 9 16.98%
I currently produce neither ePub or LRF 2 3.77%
I will produce ePub when non-Sony devices support ePub 6 11.32%
I will produce ePub if Sony stops supporting LRF 3 5.66%
I do not plan on ever supporting ePub 4 7.55%
I need better tools to support ePub 15 28.30%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 53. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-09-2009, 09:21 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by mtravellerh View Post
Well, I read a lot on my netbook and Calibre renders those epubs really fine. That good enough for you?
Wouldn't Mobipocket Reader be a better option for these devices given the number of books available in that format?

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What about Ipods and Iphones? I guess there may be more users reading books on Iphones than on hardware readers (but that is just a guess).
I was not aware that was significant. If it is and epub is the only format available, then I can see it as an important driver. I think I need to visit some of the other forums here.

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Originally Posted by mtravellerh View Post
Sony launches the 505 in Germany this year and Sony's promotion is anchored on the epub format and the german ebook sellers will sell epubs.
If you mean they'll be selling epub format books instead of LR*, then that is unfortunate, in my opinion - that is, for the readers who will have to put up with the inadequacies of the Sony firmware for rendering epubs.

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Originally Posted by mtravellerh View Post
Epub, technically speaking, has the most future potential of all formats.
Yes, but it wasn't clear that it has any present need whatsoever, or at least until you've mentioned the Apple devices.

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Originally Posted by mtravellerh View Post
Mobi and LRF once were in the same situation than epub is now, but did you hesitate to create ebooks?
Well, when I joined 18 months ago, Mobi, LRF, and IMP were the only formats being used and so that's what people have been making.


I appreciate your comments and info, mtravellerh. Thanks.
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Old 01-09-2009, 10:47 AM   #47
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(3) Clean clean clean source. If you produce a clean XHTML+CSS source of your book to produce other formats from, you can release that source as the EPUB version. If any else ever wants to convert to any other format, they can just grab the EPUB version and have the cleanest possible source to work from.
That's the reason why I publish ePUB files. Well, it's not really my source format, because I've had to convert the books into ePUB, but once they're in ePUB format, it should be easier for anyone else to use them, and for me to eventually edit or convert them.
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Old 01-09-2009, 01:31 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by Jellby View Post
That's the reason why I publish ePUB files. Well, it's not really my source format, because I've had to convert the books into ePUB, but once they're in ePUB format, it should be easier for anyone else to use them, and for me to eventually edit or convert them.
One pretty important point for me, too. I am not a techie, my interests lie in ebook making and I want to be able to make good work and make it as simple as possible so that I can edit fast and transfer those changes as fast and as easy as possible to the various ebook formats.
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Old 01-10-2009, 02:02 PM   #49
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One pretty important point for me, too. I am not a techie, my interests lie in ebook making and I want to be able to make good work and make it as simple as possible so that I can edit fast and transfer those changes as fast and as easy as possible to the various ebook formats.
That's one thing that a workflow like Feedbooks is very good at, since the end formats are generated on the fly and we work with abstract elements.
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Old 01-11-2009, 04:42 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by mtravellerh View Post
The increase is mostly due to Jellby and myself, I'm afraid. I do not understand why not more of my fellow book assemblers post their books in epub format with Calibre making such a good work of it.
I tried ePUB many times on my PRS0-505 and I still prefer LRF and PDF over ePUB. The ePUB performance is just terrible on the SONY PRS-505. I cant see myself uploading ePUB when I myself would not use it.

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Old 01-11-2009, 11:16 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by mtravellerh View Post
Sony launches the 505 in Germany this year and Sony's promotion is anchored on the epub format and the german ebook sellers will sell epubs.

Epub, technically speaking, has the most future potential of all formats.
That's an interesting point of view, mtravellerh, and what you say makes a great deal of sense. I suppose that the question then arises, why do you still bother to create LRFs, if the EPubs are so good?

I'm currently not making EPubs because I use Book Designer and Mobipocket Creator, and can't be doing with yet another converter to use with each book. This may change, as I get round to exploring new tools.
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Old 01-11-2009, 11:56 PM   #52
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I'm currently not making EPubs because I use Book Designer and Mobipocket Creator, and can't be doing with yet another converter to use with each book. This may change, as I get round to exploring new tools.
You can create ePUB from calibre. Either buy running any2epub from the command line or you can create ePUB from BookCreator

The nice thing about calibre's ePUB is it takes sony 300KB files size limit
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Old 01-12-2009, 01:02 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by =X= View Post
You can create ePUB from calibre. Either buy running any2epub from the command line or you can create ePUB from BookCreator

The nice thing about calibre's ePUB is it takes sony 300KB files size limit
=X=
The above statement in bold holds mostly true for only Sony-PRS-505/700 users and I would have wished this limitation did not exist.

I view .epub as an ultimate ebook source format and cringe when I see the resulting .html (xhtml) included therein as output by Calibre (no offense intended) in accordance to the ADE limitation.

[RANT]

I know the switch --profile="None" exists (and am grateful Kovid has allowed this), but IMHO it is a shame to have this source format be "butchered" i.e. somewhat arbitrarily split, so as to meet this minuscule limitation. I mean what happened, so as to not use MB or GB capacity or storage, since 300KB... KB, I mean, is so 1990's!!!!!!!

[/RANT]

I'm not shooting the messanger, but just the imposer of the limitation!
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Old 01-12-2009, 01:08 AM   #54
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That's an interesting point of view, mtravellerh, and what you say makes a great deal of sense. I suppose that the question then arises, why do you still bother to create LRFs, if the EPubs are so good?

I'm currently not making EPubs because I use Book Designer and Mobipocket Creator, and can't be doing with yet another converter to use with each book. This may change, as I get round to exploring new tools.
Good question, Patricia. Currently I still "bother" to create LRFs simply because the PRS505 has deficiencies in rendering epubs and because there are a lot of people, like our friend X here present, that prefer to have LRFs .

I WAS already thinking about giving up LRF and even Mobi creation because it is really simple to make mobis and LRFs from the epub files but I think that it would be quite rude to oblige people to convert their books to their preferred format themselves.

So as long as there are no bandwidth limits, I will provide those formats. See, we could tell our friends that want IMPs that they could make them easily themselves by downloading mobis and converting them with Nicks wonderful Mobi2imp, but we don't, do we?

I think of it simply as a service, I guess.
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Old 01-12-2009, 01:19 AM   #55
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The above statement in bold holds mostly true for only Sony-PRS-505/700 users and I would have wished this limitation did not exist.

I view .epub as an ultimate ebook source format and cringe when I see the resulting .html (xhtml) included therein as output by Calibre (no offense intended) in accordance to the ADE limitation.

[RANT]

I know the switch --profile="None" exists (and am grateful Kovid has allowed this), but IMHO it is a shame to have this source format be "butchered" i.e. somewhat arbitrarily split, so as to meet this minuscule limitation. I mean what happened, so as to not use MB or GB capacity or storage, since 300KB... KB, I mean, is so 1990's!!!!!!!

[/RANT]

I'm not shooting the messanger, but just the imposer of the limitation!
Nick, my friend, I know that you feel strongly about this limitation, but let's be honest: This 300KB rule is not Kovid's and he has only implemented it because there ARE a lot of Sony readers around. The Bebooks seem to have still more problems with epubs (as far as I have heard) and so epubs would be limited to PCs and Iphones and we surely don't want that.
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Old 01-12-2009, 01:52 AM   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtravellerh View Post
Nick, my friend, I know that you feel strongly about this limitation, but let's be honest: This 300KB rule is not Kovid's and he has only implemented it because there ARE a lot of Sony readers around.
Oh, and just so as to be clear (clearer?), I don't view Kovid or Calibre as the culprit in imposing this limitation.

Quote:
The Bebooks seem to have still more problems with epubs (as far as I have heard) and so epubs would be limited to PCs and Iphones and we surely don't want that.
Yes, I know this will be the case during the transition from a non .epub world to one with abundantly flowing .epub ebooks. I understand, more than most, that yesterday's (or year's) hardware just can't cut it sometimes. Even with my .imp reader, I envision .epubs will be used not directly but with the same conversion process that WILL BE required for my reader to view said .epub ebooks.

It doesn't mean that, in the future, when and if () my reader gets a firmware upgrade to allow native reading of .epubs, my tune will change. Then I would expect my reader's conversion software to take a perfectly healthy .epub (i.e. no ADE limitation) and then convert it to my reader's required (and maybe somewhat compromised/crippled) support for .epubs.

Again my view is skewed in that I view .epub as a source and not for utlimate reading on my reader yet. If I did have a Sony reader capable of viewing .epub ebooks natively, the question I would have to wrestle with is would I want (1) the convenience of a Sony-specific .epub variant over (2) a non-compliant Sony .epub that I would need some software (like Calibre) to re-generate the .epub so that my Sony reader could read it.

My answer, would be a resounding endorsement of convenience over a "higher good", but the fact remains that in the foreseeable future the "higher good" can take a back seat, but not for the long haul. The hardware will catch up and the present day .epubs will be viewed in a different light.

So do I want the current situation to change? No, but I would want the imposer of the limitation (ADE) to eventually remove that limitation (or raise it sufficiently higher so as to not be a "hinderance" to the way ebooks are scripted in .html).

For ebooks with numerous chapters of limited size, this limitation is a moot point. For huge hyperlinked ebooks, like the kind I usually prepare, I just can't appreciate that my source .epub will be in a 100 or so pieces. I don't know, maybe it's just me, but I like to work on the whole rather than the parts.

Perhaps, in my perfect world vision, I would like non-compliant Sony (non-split) .epubs to be the norm and then let every ebook reader (BeBook/Sony/iPhone) that can't handle it to re-generate their variant of that .epub ebook (even if it is .lrf for the Sony-PRS500 or .imp for my reader or .prc for the Cybook Gen3/Hanlin/iLiad...).

I told you it was a RANT!

Last edited by nrapallo; 01-12-2009 at 10:21 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 01-12-2009, 09:12 AM   #57
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I view .epub as an ultimate ebook source format and cringe when I see the resulting .html (xhtml) included therein as output by Calibre (no offense intended) in accordance to the ADE limitation.
Hi Nick, now it's my turn to rant

For me this is only proof of how poor the ePUB spec is. Here is a committee that knows that the majority of their eBooks market are viewed on embedded devices, yet they make no provision for them. Either include them or exclude them but make it clear in the specification. I'm not saying "X" plaftorm can/can't run ePUB. But address the issue by stating what kind of memory is required. And have provisions in the spec for devices that have limited hardware constrains.

Another huge gaping hole in the ePUB standard is no one solution for DRM. Maybe that is wishful thinking on ePUB side that DRM will go way but it's here and real. This means more vendors aside from Adobe can spring up with their own DRM solution. Which means buying a book from one vendor will most likely not work with another. How open is that?

So now as ePUB consumers we now have to worry about what hardware we buy in addition worry about what DRM the book is using. Arh what a headache.

I've said it before and I'll say it again. I cannot get exited over ePUB it is a GREAT idea that was poorly executed. Right now where ePUB stands today is not a valid open solution but yet another tower. So with that said

... I'll stick to MOBI and LIT where I know the eBooks I buy will work on any platform they support.


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Old 01-12-2009, 09:19 AM   #58
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Oh, and just so as to be clear (clearer?), I don't view Kovid or Calibre as the culprit in imposing this limitation.
For my two cents -- as much as I like EPUB, I think the real culprit is the Open Container Format (OCF). The OCF basically boils down to "put all the book content in a ZIP file," which is delightfully simple, may be just a bit too simple.

Every other e-book format that I know the details of contains features which explicitly simplify seeking and incremental rendering. LIT compresses book content in 64k chunks, allowing random-access to compressed data; it contains an index of all explicit page-breaks within the book content; and it uses a simplified CSS rendering model without context selectors, allowing accurate rendering of an element given only its parents. Mobipocket compresses all ebook content in 4k chunks; and it uses a single-level rendering model, allowing rendering with almost no context.

In contrast, EPUB: (a) only allows compression on entire file streams; (b) contains no indices aiding incremental rendering; and (c) mandates a rendering model which requires full file context.

For example, EPUB allows a file which looks like:

Code:
<html>
  <head>
    <title>Example</title>
    <style>.first ~ .last { display: none; }</style>
  </head>
  <body>
    <p class="first">Displayed!</p>
    [50 MB of content]
    <p class="last"> Not displayed</p>
  </body>
</html>
And requires that fully conformant systems render the content correctly, not displaying the final pagraph. Which in the context of the OCF means keeping 50MB of parsed markup around and in memory. Which is even worse on a device like the Sony Reader. On a system with a hard drive, the reader system could at least extract the compressed data to temporary files and build its indices from there. The Reader's flash filesystem is only good for so many writes, so instead it has to keep all the extracted file content in RAM, right along with all the RAM it need to actually parse the data and render it.

So unfortunately EPUB / the OCF needs some sort of arbitrary limit on the size of markup streams. It's the simplest solution to the problem without ditching the entire OCF and creating a completely different container format from scratch. I'm hoping that such an explicit -- if yes, somewhat higher -- arbitrary limit will eventually become part of the specification itself.
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Old 01-12-2009, 09:27 AM   #59
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So unfortunately EPUB / the OCF needs some sort of arbitrary limit on the size of markup streams. It's the simplest solution to the problem without ditching the entire OCF and creating a completely different container format from scratch. I'm hoping that such an explicit -- if yes, somewhat higher -- arbitrary limit will eventually become part of the specification itself.
Hey llasram, this is the first time I really understood everything you were saying! Do I progress or do you oversimplify?
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Old 01-12-2009, 09:30 AM   #60
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@llasram exactly the point (the first point) I was making, but you said much more eloquently.

Last edited by =X=; 01-12-2009 at 09:32 AM.
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