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Old 04-30-2010, 01:28 PM   #46
Elfwreck
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I want bold, italics, indented or otherwise marked quotations, and chapter breaks as new pages. Prefer indented paragraphs to space between, but that's almost entirely a matter of "prefer fewer page turns." Prefer ragged right because I don't like the spacing issues of big words on small screens, but with either halfway decent hyphenation or enough average words per line, I don't care.

I wish more ebook readers supported PML/eReader PDB files. (Was disappointed to find out the Astaks only support PalmDOC PDB; that bumps my decision to buy one farther away, because I have dozens of ebooks I converted to eReader that I'd like to reread, just not enough to go to the hassle of re-converting them.)

Wish we had a (common, open source, easily added to devices) filetype that supported something between plaintext and full HTML abilities. Italics & bold are sometimes necessary for stories; indents or *some* indicator for quotes/callout texts keep the author from having to put extra "***" dividers in, and starting a new chapter on a new page is pretty much how one I mentally separate "book" from "document."

Oh, and the ability to include images is nice.

Quick, someone make an ePub-lite generator that copies PML's options and ignores other formatting.
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Old 04-30-2010, 01:47 PM   #47
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@Elfwreck: use markdown

calibre will convert it to EPUB
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Old 04-30-2010, 04:08 PM   #48
Elfwreck
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kovidgoyal View Post
@Elfwreck: use markdown

calibre will convert it to EPUB
What's markdown? (I know I could get something to convert them. Haven't taken the time to sort out the details.)

What I want is a converter that takes a Word/RTF doc, lets me mark it up with *just* PML-compliant tags of some sort, and converts that to ePub, or exports to HTML generator with only a tiny set of tags and ignores other formatting.

(And some coder should invent it. For me! With a Windows-compatible GUI! Because I want it!)
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Old 04-30-2010, 04:10 PM   #49
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markdown is a simple txt based format, so you represent italics like *this* bold like **this** and so on.
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Old 04-30-2010, 05:38 PM   #50
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Markdown avoids the need for RTF at all:

http://daringfireball.net/projects/markdown/syntax

Very cool, I used it for an FAQ I posted to gamefaqs.com
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Old 04-30-2010, 06:48 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kovidgoyal View Post
If the book is bad, I care about the typography, if the book is good, I don't notice
Like Kovid's view on it as for me:

CONTENT IS KING:

If I have the time I change the font. But, with Fb2 I can do that any time on my PP. For me font size is more important than any formatting issues... or grammar/ misspellings.... I can figure those out as I read them. Maybe, misspellings, indenting, spacing, lines between paragraphs etc annoy people, but
for me I never find it bothersome. Hence, I don't mind .txt at times...
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Old 04-30-2010, 06:52 PM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WillAdams View Post
Markdown avoids the need for RTF at all:
http://daringfireball.net/projects/markdown/syntax
Very cool, I used it for an FAQ I posted to gamefaqs.com
I use Word to create & edit docs; that's not likely to change. (I suppose if I got really really hip I might eventually switch to OpenOffice. But I'm not going to start writing a lot in Notepad; the formatting options are just too limited.)

Markdown looks good; I don't mind doing the markup in Word & then copy-pasting into Notepad to strip out the Word formatting. (That's what I did with PML.)

What would I use for a page break? Or maybe that depends on ebook conversion software; hm.
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Old 04-30-2010, 07:31 PM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ficbot View Post
Do you care about how a book looks?...
Do you care how your spouse/partner looks?

Do you care how your dwelling looks?

Do you care how you look?

Why should ebooks be different?
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Old 04-30-2010, 09:32 PM   #54
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Because for the most part text is text when it comes to simple novel reading? And a house isn't a house, a significant other isn't a significant other etc.?

As long as the formatting is pretty much correct in terms of spacing, paragraphing etc. I'm good to go. I'm much pickier with houses, who I date, how I look etc. than how the text in whatever I'm reading on my Kindle looks!
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Old 04-30-2010, 10:37 PM   #55
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elfwreck, try txt2tags then --- it converts to LaTeX:

http://txt2tags.sourceforge.net/
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Old 04-30-2010, 10:48 PM   #56
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Yes, I do like a nicely formatted book.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:06 PM   #57
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As a matter of fact I do. Lite pages, dark print and easy on the eyes. Fully clothed is preferred; I don't like them when they can't cover up their fronts, if you know what I mean.
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Old 05-02-2010, 04:16 AM   #58
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Fully clothed is preferred; I don't like them when they can't cover up their fronts, if you know what I mean.
Yeah that's why I moved away from my previous neighbors too.
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Old 05-02-2010, 07:30 AM   #59
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In general, yes, I care about formatting.
It's a matter off how much it disrupts immersion.
Hard-coded txt I find unreadable.
Bad hyphenation, white-space rivers, extra lines between paragraphs, no paragraph indent... anything that draws me out of the narrative flow I find annoying.
Non-disruptive but still annoying is the persistent use of straight quotes in commercial ebooks.

Basically, I want decent basic typography; never mind fancy stuff like drop-caps, artistic chapter headings and what-not.

Just the basics but done right; it doesn't take much effort--a couple minutes in MS Word--to cook up a macro to fix most of the stuff and output a clean rtf/html. Even the antique gutenberg txt files can be made readable with a simple run through the Gutenberg prettifier so there is no excuse for bad formatting in the file itself.
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Old 05-02-2010, 06:09 PM   #60
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It depends on what the book is: for pulp fiction, isn't paperback fine? On the other hand, while you can pick up Shakespeare in paperback, wouldn't you rather have a nice hard-bound copy that will last? With ebooks, if I'm only going to read something once, I'm not going to worry too much about formatting; but, if it's a book that I really love, I care quite a bit about formatting. For the books I've taken the time to scan, I've also taken the time to try to replicate the typesetting of the hard copy. Of course it's vastly easier for me, since I've resolved to only own one device at a time.

If you haven't read a book, there's no sense in spending gobs of time beating it into shape only to read it and find you didn't really care for it.
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