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Old 07-25-2009, 11:47 AM   #1
Greg.
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Acrobat Professional ==> Sony Reader

Hi, I'm new to the forum so I hope this is in the right place.

Basically I have a Sony Reader and Acrobat Professional Extended. I also have several books in PDF format, and I am wondering is there a way to utilize Acrobat to create good, readable books for the Sony Reader.

So any tips or advice would be appreciated, because I'm a bit of a newbie with Acrobat.

Thanks.
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Old 07-25-2009, 11:53 AM   #2
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Hi, Greg, and welcome to MobileRead!

I can't give you any advice about Acrobat , but I did want to welcome you properly. I am sure someone will come along soon who can answer your question or point you in the right direction. Good luck.

Happy Reading!
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Old 07-25-2009, 12:05 PM   #3
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Thanks for the welcome kazbates.
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Old 07-25-2009, 01:48 PM   #4
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I use Acrobat Pro to edit or convert books for the Reader all the time.

In order of simplicity:
1) Crop
2) Add tags
3) Add Bookmarks
4) Convert to Word, format & reconvert to Acrobat

CROP
When I'm in a hurry, I just crop the pages to remove whitespace. Control-Shift-T opens the crop dialogue; I first go to a page that has the main body of the text so I know I'm not cropping out anything useful. I crop to remove the headers & footers, if any; I don't need the book title & page number showing on the Reader. (It'll show the page number anyway.) It's generally more important to crop top & bottom than sides, because most books are taller than the proportions of the Reader.

So I crop top & bottom to as close to the text as possible, and crop the sides in a little bit but don't worry about how close, because I know there's going to be extra whitespace on the sides anyway.

The crop dialogue will let you crop the current page, a range of pages, or all pages. (I generally crop from page 2 to end-of-book, and leave the cover uncropped.) It'll also crop odd & even differently, if that matters; for published books it doesn't, but for scanned books that's often useful.

TAGS
This will allow reflow to work much better. Most PDFs released by mainstream publishers are not tagged for accessibility, and the reflow in the Sony Reader winds up keeping the original line breaks. (And sometimes, it cuts off in the middle of words.) Adding tags makes it "pre-read" to identify paragraphs, and avoids the worst of the reflow problems.

Tags are found under Advanced --> Accessibility --> Add tags to document. It takes some time (a minute or two is common, longer for very long or complex docs), can double the filesize, and just flat-out doesn't work on some documents, depending on how the PDF was created. Remember to do a save-as, not just a save, after tagging, or the filesize gets a LOT bigger.

Ignore the warnings that appear on the right after tagging, unless you love detailed nitpicky organization work. (Unless you love it enough to spend an extra half-hour for the one PDF, I mean. Manually editing tags is slow and painful work*--worth doing if you're professionally producing PDFs for read-aloud functions, not important for most PDFs for the Reader.)

BOOKMARKS
If I'm likely to read the book more than once, or use it for a reference, I add bookmarks.

Control-B will add a blank bookmark on the page you have visible. Highlighting text first, then hitting Control-B, makes a bookmark on that page, with the highlighted text. (Even if the text is on a different page.)

If there's a Table of Contents, I bookmark that, then use that list to create bookmarks all on that page, then skip to those pages and re-set the bookmarks to the right pages. Right-clicking on the bookmarks gives the option of changing the bookmark location to the current one. (If that didn't make sense, I'd be happy to explain in more detail.)

CONVERT & REFORMAT
If a PDF is just too painful to read full-size, even cropped, and tagging doesn't allow reflow to work well enough, I'll often convert the document.

First I crop to remove headers & footers, because they're easier to remove from the PDF than the Word doc. (Cropping them doesn't actually remove them, but it does keep them out of the conversion.) Then I save the PDF as a Word or RTF file, open that, and start reformatting.

If you like doc formatting, there's a lot of helpful tips I can offer here. If you don't, the quick version involves:

Remove page breaks--manually for a good conversion, by find & replace otherwise (which means you keep some line breaks in the middles of paragraphs)

Finding some way to identify chapter starts, and using find & replace to format those lines, preferably with one of the "Header" styles, so they'll convert to bookmarks when you reconvert.

Select all text; change paragraph to single spaced; change font to 100% size, not expanded or condensed. Potentially change all to a single font of your choice.

Up to you how much you want to search for centered text, which is often converted as heavily indented text, which gets troublesome when you change page sizes.

Change page size: 3.5" x 4.6", or 90x120mm, is about right. (Neither of those is exact.) I use .1" page margins all around; you can play with those settings to your preferences.

I select all text and use the "shrink font" button to reduce it so the main body text is about 10 pt. Then I either manually or with find-and-replace change any header/title text that's insanely big on the small page sizes.

I've set up a "Sony Reader" setting in my convert-to-Acrobat settings; it's got the right page size and shrinks images to 166dpi. I use that.


*Slow and painful, compared to the relatively quick, simple and elegant work of line-by-line proofreading. If you decide to get into manual tag editing, save often and expect to occasionally crash Acrobat. It involves an arcane coding system with almost no useful online help resources.

Last edited by Elfwreck; 07-25-2009 at 01:57 PM. Reason: fix unclear phrasing
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Old 07-26-2009, 02:04 PM   #5
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Why thank you Elfwreck. That is a truly super post.
Thanks for taking the time to write it. I've had a go with one scanned PDF ebook, and although I had to crop every page individually (using this excellent plug in that just lets me draw a box around the area I want to crop), the final product turned out really good on my Reader.
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Old 07-26-2009, 04:36 PM   #6
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I have Adobe Professional 6 (on the Windows computer) I believe. I have looked at it and don't find it particularly easy to modify things. It is not user friendly, at least not to me.

Why do you convert it to Word, then back to Adobe Pro?

The main thing I want to fix on my books is the irritating headers that keep appearing in the middle of my book on every page.

I am not sure what bookmarking does in the Adobe Pro. Can it make the TOC links?

When I made a setup on the Adobe Pro. for the Sony (page size) it just made my print smaller on the Sony Reader. I tried following the instructions that Sony made and I just couldn't get it with larger print. Lost me completely. They confused me with too many different methods.

Last edited by new; 07-26-2009 at 04:45 PM.
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Old 07-27-2009, 02:19 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by new View Post
I have Adobe Professional 6 (on the Windows computer) I believe. I have looked at it and don't find it particularly easy to modify things. It is not user friendly, at least not to me.
It's only easy for me because I've been working with Acrobat Pro for nearly ten years, since Acrobat 4.0. (There are features from Acro 4 that I still miss.)

Acrobat is not a simple program, and modifying things involves knowing what *can* be modified, and then finding out where they've hidden that option in the dropdown menus. It's a mess. They keep trying to make the basic reader options more obvious and somewhat more powerful, and the Pro options get more arcane and complicated with every version. Also, they move them around; they change what dropdowns some options are associated with.

Quote:
Why do you convert it to Word, then back to Adobe Pro?
Because that lets me set the appearance; the pages in the PDF are the same pages I see on the Reader. RTF files don't do that; they resize in unpredictable (to me) ways. (Also, the filesize tends to be much larger. And I believe RTFs don't show pictures, so I can't add a cover.) Converting to LRF involves more steps; I have to use software that I don't have handy on all of the computers I normally work on. I've got Calibre on my portable drive, but it's troublesome to run it.

Quote:
The main thing I want to fix on my books is the irritating headers that keep appearing in the middle of my book on every page.
"Middle of the book?" Or do you just mean the page headers from the original PDF? I crop those out, when I can; they are annoying.

Quote:
I am not sure what bookmarking does in the Adobe Pro. Can it make the TOC links?
The bookmarks in a PDF become the Contents listing in the Sony Reader. I believe you can also add links to the TOC page (if there is one) and use those, but links are a bit more hassle than bookmarks.

Quote:
When I made a setup on the Adobe Pro. for the Sony (page size) it just made my print smaller on the Sony Reader. I tried following the instructions that Sony made and I just couldn't get it with larger print. Lost me completely. They confused me with too many different methods.
It is very complicated and can easily be confusing.

Can you describe what happens with the smaller print? I don't understand what you mean there.
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Old 07-27-2009, 11:27 AM   #8
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Greg,
Welcome to Mobileread. Apart from Elfwreck's super post, you can check this guide published by Sony: www.sonystyle.ca/html/pdf/reader_createPDF.pdf on how to create pdf's for the reader.

Edit:

Sorry, the link doesn't work anymore. The same document can be found here in Mobileread somewhere.....

Last edited by Pablo; 07-27-2009 at 01:55 PM. Reason: Broken link
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Old 07-27-2009, 04:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg. View Post
Hi, I'm new to the forum so I hope this is in the right place.

Basically I have a Sony Reader and Acrobat Professional Extended. I also have several books in PDF format, and I am wondering is there a way to utilize Acrobat to create good, readable books for the Sony Reader.

So any tips or advice would be appreciated, because I'm a bit of a newbie with Acrobat.

Thanks.
Greg.
Hi Greg,

You are more advanced than I am, I don't even know what Adobe Acrobat Extended is! I have Adobe Acrobat Professional that I got as a college student in 2006. I haven't figured that out yet.

Enjoy playing and let us know how you do fixing .pdf books, that is what I want to do.
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Old 07-27-2009, 04:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elfwreck View Post
It's only easy for me because I've been working with Acrobat Pro for nearly ten years, since Acrobat 4.0. (There are features from Acro 4 that I still miss.)

Acrobat is not a simple program, and modifying things involves knowing what *can* be modified, and then finding out where they've hidden that option in the dropdown menus. It's a mess. They keep trying to make the basic reader options more obvious and somewhat more powerful, and the Pro options get more arcane and complicated with every version. Also, they move them around; they change what dropdowns some options are associated with.



Because that lets me set the appearance; the pages in the PDF are the same pages I see on the Reader. RTF files don't do that; they resize in unpredictable (to me) ways. (Also, the filesize tends to be much larger. And I believe RTFs don't show pictures, so I can't add a cover.) Converting to LRF involves more steps; I have to use software that I don't have handy on all of the computers I normally work on. I've got Calibre on my portable drive, but it's troublesome to run it.



"Middle of the book?" Or do you just mean the page headers from the original PDF? I crop those out, when I can; they are annoying.



The bookmarks in a PDF become the Contents listing in the Sony Reader. I believe you can also add links to the TOC page (if there is one) and use those, but links are a bit more hassle than bookmarks.



It is very complicated and can easily be confusing.

Can you describe what happens with the smaller print? I don't understand what you mean there.
I don't know how you do multiple quotes here either

Thanks for explaining why you do convert to doc. I read to convert to .rtf somewhere, probably Sony's instructions.

I believe when I setup the format size for the Sony Reader I hadn't changed any type size because I couldn't figure out how on the Adobe Acrobat Pro. So I transferred it to the Sony Reader and the print was smaller than the original book was. I really need to figure out how to change type without converting using Calibre to .lrf because that is where the headers get put in odd places because I do change to larger type.

I hope this makes sense.
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Old 07-27-2009, 05:17 PM   #11
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Quote:
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I don't know how you do multiple quotes here either
Manually.
Copy paste the whole quoted text as many times as the number of separate quotes you want to have and edit the enclosed text in each one of the quotes by keeping only the part of the text you want to comment.
Do not delete the quote boudaries ([ quote=..] at the beginning and [/quote] at the end).
I think you can also have nested quotes with a little more effort...
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Old 07-27-2009, 11:30 PM   #12
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I don't know how you do multiple quotes here either
Just click the button beside the 'Quote' button at the bottom right corner of each message you want quote, then click the 'new reply' button and viola, multi-quoted messages. Then follow those [ quote] .. [ /quote] pairs.

BTW, the name of the button beside the 'Quote' button is 'Multi-Quote This Message'...
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Old 07-28-2009, 03:17 AM   #13
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Just click the button beside the 'Quote' button at the bottom right corner of each message you want quote, then click the 'new reply' button and viola, multi-quoted messages. Then follow those [ quote] .. [ /quote] pairs.

Cool

BTW, the name of the button beside the 'Quote' button is 'Multi-Quote This Message'...
You can teach an old dog a new trick. Now can you teach me how to convert .pdf for my Sony?

Last edited by new; 07-28-2009 at 03:18 AM. Reason: Guess this old dog didn't do the trick correct. It is late here.
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:04 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nrapallo View Post
Just click the button beside the 'Quote' button at the bottom right corner of each message you want quote, then click the 'new reply' button and viola, multi-quoted messages. Then follow those [ quote] .. [ /quote] pairs.
Or just click that multi-quote button for all messages you want to quote, except the last one, for which you click the normal quote button
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Old 07-28-2009, 08:57 AM   #15
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Quote:
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You can teach an old dog a new trick. Now can you teach me how to convert .pdf for my Sony?
PDFRead...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jellby View Post
Or just click that multi-quote button for all messages you want to quote, except the last one, for which you click the normal quote button
That's soooo minimalist...
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