Register Guidelines E-Books Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Go Back   MobileRead Forums > E-Book Formats > ePub

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 02-24-2010, 07:54 PM   #1
DGReader
Member
DGReader began at the beginning.
 
Posts: 11
Karma: 10
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Phoenix, AZ, USA
Device: Sony Reader Pocket Edition
Question What's with all the straight quotes (inch marks)?

Hi. I'm sorry if this has already been covered, but I've been searching the site for the last 20 minutes and haven't found anything written about the subject of curly quotes, a.k.a. typographer's quotes, a.k.a. quotation marks (as opposed to "inch marks" which is what "straight quotes" really are).

Okay, I know that for some people this is nitpicking. But I've been seeing a lot of ePubs out there without good typography. To me it makes a big difference when I see proper slanted or curly quotation marks (‘ ’) and (“ ”) instead of straight inch marks (' ') or foot marks (" ") around quotations.

Isn't ePub basically XML with CSS? If so, then its native character set should be Unicode. Unicode character sets allow for the native inclusion of extra characters such as true ellipses (…) rather that three periods in a row (...), letters with accents in them (résumé instead of resume), etc. There shouldn't even be the necessity to "escape" characters as there is with some flavors of HTML. It shouldn't be hard, then, to write a book for the ePub format with good typography.

If I wanted to take a published, non–DRM-protected ePub file and reformat it to make all the inch marks and foot marks become double quotes and single quotes, how would I do that? I am flummoxed by Calibre. I downloaded it for my Mac and I don't even know where to begin. It reminds of of GraphicConverter with all its endless functions. I looked to see if there were a way to replace straight quotes with curly quotes, and I couldn't find a straightforward one. Is there one?

P.S. Yes, I know that search-and-replace doesn't always work with inch and foot marks, because sometimes a foot mark is a single open quote and sometimes it should be a single close quote or apostrophe.

P.S.S. This may be <em>really</em> picky, but is it possible to design an ePub to have ligatures such as fi ( fi ), ff ( ff ) ffi ( ffi ), etc.?
DGReader is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2010, 08:36 PM   #2
kennyc
The Dank Side of the Moon
kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
kennyc's Avatar
 
Posts: 31,526
Karma: 61688757
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Denver, CO
Device: Kindle2; Galaxy SIII; Xoom; Kindle Fire
Welcome to MR......I guess I'm more into reading than looks.
kennyc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2010, 08:43 PM   #3
charleski
Wizard
charleski ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.charleski ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.charleski ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.charleski ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.charleski ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.charleski ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.charleski ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.charleski ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.charleski ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.charleski ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.charleski ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 1,188
Karma: 727236
Join Date: Sep 2009
Device: PRS-505
It largely depends on how professional the person doing the conversion is. Most ebooks should be using typographic quotes these days, but there are still a few lazy publishers who don't check that the work's done properly.

An ePub can use any character you want, as long as the font has the right glyph to display it. Since you can embed your own fonts, it's perfectly possible to use ligatures as long as the type is set correctly.

Converting the quotation marks yourself is not easy. There's some discussion about it here and here I think if you search in the Workshop forum you'll find a few other threads, but can't locate them right now. The bottom line, though, is that you'd need to tear it down, edit, and then reconstruct the epub, since there aren't any simple conversion tools that I know of.
charleski is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2010, 10:52 PM   #4
DGReader
Member
DGReader began at the beginning.
 
Posts: 11
Karma: 10
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Phoenix, AZ, USA
Device: Sony Reader Pocket Edition
Thanks so much for those links. I wonder why they didn't turn up in my searches.
DGReader is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2010, 10:59 PM   #5
cmdahler
Addict
cmdahler can name that song in three notescmdahler can name that song in three notescmdahler can name that song in three notescmdahler can name that song in three notescmdahler can name that song in three notescmdahler can name that song in three notescmdahler can name that song in three notescmdahler can name that song in three notescmdahler can name that song in three notescmdahler can name that song in three notescmdahler can name that song in three notes
 
Posts: 293
Karma: 24688
Join Date: Aug 2009
Device: Sony PRS-505, iPad
Quote:
Originally Posted by DGReader View Post
Okay, I know that for some people this is nitpicking. But I've been seeing a lot of ePubs out there without good typography. To me it makes a big difference when I see proper slanted or curly quotation marks (‘ ’) and (“ ”) instead of straight inch marks (' ') or foot marks (" ") around quotations.
I completely agree. This is like fingernails on a blackboard to me whenever I try to read an ePub that was formatted without typographer's quotes. It just screams "This epub was made by a bloke in his mom's basement with Microsoft Word."

Quote:
P.S.S. This may be <em>really</em> picky, but is it possible to design an ePub to have ligatures such as fi ( fi ), ff ( ff ) ffi ( ffi ), etc.?
So far as I know, the answer is no. That's not because of the design of the particular file, it's because the epub renderers are not up to such professional-level typography. It'll probably get that way someday, but for now if you want to take your reading to the level of quality that includes things like ligatures, font alternates in professional-level fonts, optical margins, etc., you'll have to stick with PDFs.
cmdahler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2010, 11:22 PM   #6
nomesque
Snooty Bestselling Author
nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
nomesque's Avatar
 
Posts: 1,486
Karma: 1000000
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Ipswich, QLD, Australia
Device: PRS-650
Interestingly, I've been deliberately using straight quote marks and the minus sign in my ebooks. Reason? I knew the .epub format could cope with better typography, but I wasn't 100% sure that all ebook readers would be able to. And I find "s much less annoying than stray ?s. I'm fine with admitting that there's a possibility I'm stuck in the 20th century...
nomesque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2010, 12:29 AM   #7
ATimson
Evangelist
ATimson ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ATimson ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ATimson ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ATimson ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ATimson ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ATimson ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ATimson ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ATimson ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ATimson ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ATimson ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ATimson ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
ATimson's Avatar
 
Posts: 425
Karma: 1044878
Join Date: Apr 2009
Device: nook STR, iPod Touch 3G
Quote:
Originally Posted by cmdahler View Post
It just screams "This epub was made by a bloke in his mom's basement with Microsoft Word."
In that case, it would have the typographical quotes even when you wanted non-typographical ones.
ATimson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2010, 12:56 AM   #8
nomesque
Snooty Bestselling Author
nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.nomesque ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
nomesque's Avatar
 
Posts: 1,486
Karma: 1000000
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Ipswich, QLD, Australia
Device: PRS-650
Quote:
Originally Posted by ATimson View Post
In that case, it would have the typographical quotes even when you wanted non-typographical ones.
YES!

Non-typographical quotes says it's been written by a bloke in his Mum's basement with Notepad...
nomesque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2010, 01:09 AM   #9
FizzyWater
You kids get off my lawn!
FizzyWater ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.FizzyWater ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.FizzyWater ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.FizzyWater ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.FizzyWater ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.FizzyWater ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.FizzyWater ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.FizzyWater ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.FizzyWater ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.FizzyWater ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.FizzyWater ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
FizzyWater's Avatar
 
Posts: 2,894
Karma: 5613301
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Device: Dell Axim, PRS350/650, Nook Glow, PB Touch Lux 623
Quote:
Originally Posted by ATimson View Post
In that case, it would have the typographical quotes even when you wanted non-typographical ones.
And in the wrong direction half the time, too. It's why I tend to convert to straight quotes, rather than deal with backwards curly ones.
FizzyWater is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2010, 02:04 AM   #10
delphidb96
Wizard
delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 3,000
Karma: 300001
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Citrus Heights, California
Device: TWO Kindle 2s, one each Bookeen Cybook Gen3, Sony PRS-500, Axim X51V
Quote:
Originally Posted by DGReader View Post
Hi. I'm sorry if this has already been covered, but I've been searching the site for the last 20 minutes and haven't found anything written about the subject of curly quotes, a.k.a. typographer's quotes, a.k.a. quotation marks (as opposed to "inch marks" which is what "straight quotes" really are).

Okay, I know that for some people this is nitpicking. But I've been seeing a lot of ePubs out there without good typography. To me it makes a big difference when I see proper slanted or curly quotation marks (‘ ’) and (“ ”) instead of straight inch marks (' ') or foot marks (" ") around quotations.

Isn't ePub basically XML with CSS? If so, then its native character set should be Unicode. Unicode character sets allow for the native inclusion of extra characters such as true ellipses (…) rather that three periods in a row (...), letters with accents in them (résumé instead of resume), etc. There shouldn't even be the necessity to "escape" characters as there is with some flavors of HTML. It shouldn't be hard, then, to write a book for the ePub format with good typography.

If I wanted to take a published, non–DRM-protected ePub file and reformat it to make all the inch marks and foot marks become double quotes and single quotes, how would I do that? I am flummoxed by Calibre. I downloaded it for my Mac and I don't even know where to begin. It reminds of of GraphicConverter with all its endless functions. I looked to see if there were a way to replace straight quotes with curly quotes, and I couldn't find a straightforward one. Is there one?

P.S. Yes, I know that search-and-replace doesn't always work with inch and foot marks, because sometimes a foot mark is a single open quote and sometimes it should be a single close quote or apostrophe.

P.S.S. This may be <em>really</em> picky, but is it possible to design an ePub to have ligatures such as fi ( fi ), ff ( ff ) ffi ( ffi ), etc.?
Ummm... I *prefer* (") and (') marks. And I was always taught that (') stood for foot/feet and (") stood for inch/inches, yes???

Derek
delphidb96 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2010, 05:23 AM   #11
kennyc
The Dank Side of the Moon
kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.kennyc ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
kennyc's Avatar
 
Posts: 31,526
Karma: 61688757
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Denver, CO
Device: Kindle2; Galaxy SIII; Xoom; Kindle Fire
Quote:
Originally Posted by ATimson View Post
In that case, it would have the typographical quotes even when you wanted non-typographical ones.

So True! I constantly fight with Word! (and avoid it whenever possible).
kennyc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2010, 08:01 AM   #12
WillAdams
Guru
WillAdams ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.WillAdams ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.WillAdams ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.WillAdams ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.WillAdams ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.WillAdams ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.WillAdams ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.WillAdams ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.WillAdams ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.WillAdams ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.WillAdams ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
WillAdams's Avatar
 
Posts: 946
Karma: 1760710
Join Date: Feb 2008
Device: Sony PRS-600, Fujitsu Stylistic ST-4121
Absolutely incorrect terminology and (mis)usage of characters.

Straight / uni-directional single (apostrophe ') and double quote (") marks are a convention from typewriters where the limited character set forced the directional marks (‘’ and “”) into a single duplexed key --- they have since found usage in computer code as a way to indicate strings and various other conventions:

print "Hello World"

Primes and double primes which are used in mathematics to indicate various things and to indicate feet and inches (5′ 2″), or degrees and seconds of degrees are separate characters (which unfortunately don't appear in many fonts --- Hypatia Sans Pro and Arno Pro are two which come to mind).

Please, use the proper character in the proper context.

William
WillAdams is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2010, 08:58 AM   #13
Jellby
frumious Bandersnatch
Jellby ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jellby ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jellby ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jellby ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jellby ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jellby ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jellby ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jellby ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jellby ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jellby ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jellby ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Jellby's Avatar
 
Posts: 6,082
Karma: 4571547
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Spaniard in Sweden
Device: Cybook Orizon, Kobo Aura
I go through a sometimes painful process of replacing straight quotes with the correct curly quotes, and marking apostrophes differently from right single quotes (though they render the same), for every book I create. It's not as easy as it might seem at first, especially when there are other issues in the source text, like missing spaces; things like "I heard 'em comin'" are more frequent than one could think.

For ellipses, I choose not to use the single character because: 1) in English I believe it's "better" to use a series of periods separated with non-breaking spaces, and 2) in other languages ellipses should actually look like three periods in a row, so I think it's better to code them like that as well.

Ligatures are a typesetting fancy which should be done by the rendering program, and not coded in the source, like kerning and paragraph breaking. Besides, ligatures whould mess text-search.
Jellby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2010, 10:48 AM   #14
pdurrant
The Grand Mouse
pdurrant ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.pdurrant ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.pdurrant ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.pdurrant ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.pdurrant ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.pdurrant ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.pdurrant ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.pdurrant ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.pdurrant ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.pdurrant ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.pdurrant ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
pdurrant's Avatar
 
Posts: 31,360
Karma: 86522568
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Norfolk, England
Device: NOOK ST GlowLight
Quote:
Originally Posted by delphidb96 View Post
Ummm... I *prefer* (") and (') marks. And I was always taught that (') stood for foot/feet and (") stood for inch/inches, yes???
' and " are marks from the age of typewriters (and plain ASCII) and are used both for quotation marks, and for foot and inch marks. They're called the apostrophe and the quotation mark.

But properly, quotation marks are like this: ‘ ’ and “ ”, and the marks for feet and inches are like this: and (prime and double prime).

Not all fonts have the unicode prime and double prime, in which case the apostrophe and quotation mark should be used. But IMO they look better in that role when italicised. In most fonts that have the prime and double prime characters, the glyph slants from bottom left to top right. Although this is not true for all fonts – it’s up to the font’s designer. Some fonts have primes that are straight up & down, and indistinguisable from the ASCII apostrophe and quotation marks (e.g. Arial).
pdurrant is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2010, 01:28 PM   #15
delphidb96
Wizard
delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 3,000
Karma: 300001
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Citrus Heights, California
Device: TWO Kindle 2s, one each Bookeen Cybook Gen3, Sony PRS-500, Axim X51V
Quote:
Originally Posted by pdurrant View Post
' and " are marks from the age of typewriters (and plain ASCII) and are used both for quotation marks, and for foot and inch marks. They're called the apostrophe and the quotation mark.

But properly, quotation marks are like this: ‘ ’ and “ ”, and the marks for feet and inches are like this: and (prime and double prime).
Which is what I thought! I wondered because the person I was replying to stated (") as feet and (') as inches.

Derek
delphidb96 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
curly, diacritics, punctuation, quotes, typography

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Change single quotes to double quotes Elfwreck Workshop 16 04-26-2013 10:06 AM
Single quotes to double quotes? lunixer General Discussions 35 10-10-2010 05:47 AM
convert straight quotes to curly quotes alansplace Calibre 3 09-25-2010 03:51 PM
Dell's 7-inch and 10-inch Streak tablets leaked luag News 1 04-18-2010 04:28 PM
Quotes become question marks in RTF output Phil_C Calibre 3 01-06-2010 09:16 AM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 08:45 PM.


MobileRead.com is a privately owned, operated and funded community.