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Old 03-26-2009, 10:55 AM   #1
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Library book question...

I am about to get a 505 and have read many posts about the quality of ADE (Adobe) downloads from libraries. Many have said they have weird page breaks etc. Can these be run through any script to fix the formatting? Does Calibre do that? Or would it be better to download a Mobi file and convert to LRF (I think that is the Sony format)?
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Last edited by radamo; 03-26-2009 at 11:09 AM.
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Old 03-26-2009, 11:15 AM   #2
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Can these be run through any script to fix the formatting?
It may be possible in some special cases, but there is no generic way to do it.
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Old 03-26-2009, 11:46 AM   #3
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Libraries that I deal with use only DRM'd Adobe Digital Editions which cannot be tampered with.

WDE.
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Old 03-26-2009, 11:52 AM   #4
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Libraries that I deal with use only DRM'd Adobe Digital Editions which cannot be tampered with.

WDE.
And how do these files look on the device? Are the odd page breaks etc. very distracting or do they display fairly well?
Thanks,
RA
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Old 03-26-2009, 11:58 AM   #5
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If you want to preserve the DRM (encryption) then your only choice is Adobe lending library ebooks. There are a very few ePubs, but most are PDFs. I suggest you try a few library PDFs to see if they are acceptable.

If not, then you will have to strip the DRM, either from the Adobe PDF or from the MOBI. This may be illegal in the US, particularly for lending library ebooks (where the personal use argument is less compelling than for ebooks you bought). You will have a better chance of format shifting the MOBI to LRF or ePub than the PDF, but most libraries have fewer MOBIs than PDFs.

Last edited by wallcraft; 03-26-2009 at 01:57 PM. Reason: see post #10
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Old 03-26-2009, 12:11 PM   #6
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Most libraries have more pdfs than mobipocket. If you wanted to convert the mobi files you will first need to remove DRM then convert to LRF.

The odd page breaks occur when you use text size M and L. Because pdf files have fixed pages, when the Sony reflows the text it will usually take the one pdf page and extend it to 1 1/4 pages on the Reader. Page breaks are not distracting once you get used to it. A small inconvience when dealing with free books.

The only part of the reflow that irritates me is conversations and reflow. In a book, when you have two or more people having dialogue you will have to pay close attention to the quotes to determine when one person finishes talking and another starts. The quotes look like they are running together and it is sometimes hard to understand who is talking.

I would definitely try out a book in pdf format to see if the reflow is something you can live with.
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Old 03-26-2009, 12:14 PM   #7
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And how do these files look on the device? Are the odd page breaks etc. very distracting or do they display fairly well?
Thanks,
RA
Most are very legible. A few, when you up the font size, tend to have some large spaces between pages but are still quite readable.

WDE.
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Old 03-26-2009, 12:16 PM   #8
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grooks, is right. Dialogue is the main problem. Unless you're in the smallest font, it can get tricky determining who is actually speaking. OTOH, I've read a bunch of eBooks from my local library (Fairfax, VA) and it's been a pleasant experience.
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Old 03-26-2009, 12:21 PM   #9
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grooks, is right. Dialogue is the main problem. Unless you're in the smallest font, it can get tricky determining who is actually speaking. OTOH, I've read a bunch of eBooks from my local library (Fairfax, VA) and it's been a pleasant experience.
You're right about some books with dialogue, it is hard to tell who's taking when there are no sentence breaks.

WDE.
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Old 03-26-2009, 12:40 PM   #10
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SNIP
If not, then you will have to strip the DRM, either from the Adobe PDF or from the MOBI. This is illegal in the US, particularly for lending library ebooks (where the personal use argument is less compelling than for ebooks you bought).
SNIP
While the fair-use argument is less compelling for library books than for eBooks you have purchased, it's still probably more accurate to say "this may or may not be illegal in the US" -- nobody knows for sure. The law is not clear on the subject; eminent experts in IP law have lined up on both sides of the question, and no court has yet ruled.

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Old 03-26-2009, 12:57 PM   #11
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You guys (& gals) are amazing! Thanks for all the info...
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Old 03-26-2009, 10:53 PM   #12
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I don't mind the half-empty page, but it is often very difficult to follow dialogue, as others have stated. Hopefully a future version of Sony's firmware will do a better job of reflowing PDF documents, as the S size is usually very difficult to read.

I keep hoping NYPL will offer epub books, but they currently don't have any books in the epub format.

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Old 03-27-2009, 12:50 AM   #13
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I keep hoping NYPL will offer epub books, but they currently don't have any books in the epub format.

SteveK
I'm waiting for this too. I know I read somewhere that both NYPL and the DC library were planning on offering ePub books. But, as far as I know the Cleveland Library is the only library that offers them.

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Old 03-27-2009, 08:36 AM   #14
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I just got my first library pdf yesterday. I am not too impressed with the "reflow" capabilities. The smallest font looks great. But it is illegible for humans. Going to the next size up the font is readable but the whole book changes, page breaks in the wrong places etc. Being in the software industry I am struggling with this. I feel a little frustrated having made up my mind to get the Sony device since I was able to get library books. I guess spending $300 on a reader only gets you so far.

Maybe I am missing something... I will keep looking.
RA
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Old 03-27-2009, 11:27 AM   #15
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Wow..I started my first library e-book last night(!!I have officially broken in my e-reader!!) and I noticed the same thing with the flow. I also noticed that it would even chop off half a sentence and I wouldn't see the rest until the next page. And the conversations were somewhat confusing too, but once I realized what was happening it was easy to tell who was talking. These things are annoying, but its not too bad.

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