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Old 10-25-2006, 12:54 AM   #31
davidrothman
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Alex did a great job of summing up the new program's features. For another perspective, see http://www.teleread.org/blog/?p=5698 .

Beyond the usual DRM gotchas, there's the issue of the reader's being "Flash-based"---Adobe's own words. You can bet that Adobe will be more interested in promoting books with proprietary gotchas than the unencumbered pure OEBPS variety. In effect we're still deep in, yep, eBabel territory. Simply put, the new Adobe program is a Trojan for proprietary technology.

Meanwhile, the guys at Microsoft may very well have a superior raeder in the works. The Times Reader displayed better on my PC than the Adobe program did, and I suspect that the inevitable successor to Microsoft Reader will do the same. Significantly, Microsoft has not been a participant in the IDPF's latest standards-setting activities---dominated by Adobe and ETI.

Thanks.
David

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Old 10-25-2006, 03:13 AM   #32
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David,

So you prefer Microsoft over Adobe because the former's application "displays better" on your PC than the latter's, disregarding the fact that the former uses a proprietary book format? I don't understand you. All the time you've been screaming for a common e-book standard based on open-specs; now we have a big company who does the attempt, and you disqualify them based on the quality of an initial early beta release?

The Times Reader uses Microsoft .NET. Do you have any idea how many people do not have .NET installed? Either because they don't like the additional bloat, or simply because they are not using the Windows system. So how is Times Reader any less "eBabel territory" - using your famed words - than Digital Editions?

It doesn't matter what Digital Editions is written in. The point is that it supports an e-book format that is aimed at becoming the standard, which implies that other software application would support the same format in some future, making it easy for the user to switch to another reader if Digital Editions doesn't fit him well.

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Old 10-25-2006, 03:15 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by yvanleterrible
Pity it only reads PDF.
Look deeper. It also read XHTML files -- indeed, some of the free eBooks from Adobe are XHTML.
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Old 10-25-2006, 03:39 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by TadW
The point is that it supports an e-book format that is aimed at becoming the standard, which implies that other software application would support the same format in some future, making it easy for the user to switch to another reader if Digital Editions doesn't fit him well.
Also, if Adobe keeps it up, it doesn't seem unlikely that their other tools will also support this format: InDesign, say. Noone would get InDesign to produce OEBPS books (or whatever the format is), but if I can take the files for a printed book, done with InDesign, and produce a e-book from them in a well-supported format, conversion will be much less of a hassle than if I have to re-scan the pages. I won't hope that Acrobat will allow saving into this format ... at least not for a while.
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Old 10-25-2006, 08:28 AM   #35
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Come on - I've had a play with this thing and it's just Acrobat on Flash. It doesn't solve any of the problems of reading PDFs - no proper scrolling, random whitespace, fixed alignments - and in some cases makes them worse. Whatever Adobe say about the future of the application, it's intended as a reader for their own proprietary, DRM-riddled books, which no one is going to want.
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Old 10-25-2006, 08:34 AM   #36
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Adobe should break with their software only tradition and build a reader, eink that is!
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Old 10-25-2006, 03:30 PM   #37
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David of Teleread wrote an in-depth article where he argues that Adobe Digital Editions suffers from various OEBPS conformance problems. Worth checking out!
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Old 10-25-2006, 03:31 PM   #38
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Adopting an open standard, such as OEBPS is a great step forward, persummably the same file can now be displayed through different softweare readers - it'll be much more palitable for publishers to use one format and support multiple DRM schemes for different readers ... now if we could have an open standard around DRM that could cover most eventualities and be acceptable for publishers ...the ebook/emagazine format might take off!

This is potentially a good step forward ...
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Old 10-25-2006, 04:23 PM   #39
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I found something out by pure hazard. The reader seems to open at the last page read when you shut it, that is nice.
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Old 10-25-2006, 05:02 PM   #40
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alexander said:
> there are currently only two specs being considered
> as possible future open e-book standards.

not so fast there, pilgrim. :+)

there are people out here with other ideas,
i can assure you of that...

-bowerbird
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Old 10-25-2006, 05:20 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bowerbird
alexander said:
> there are currently only two specs being considered
> as possible future open e-book standards.

not so fast there, pilgrim. :+)

there are people out here with other ideas,
i can assure you of that...

-bowerbird
Heh Can you shed some light?

Unfortunately, I believe, it takes more than just ideas to establish a standard. At least if you have to deal with publishers in your back.
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Old 10-25-2006, 06:39 PM   #42
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i will be happy to shed some light;
not right now, but sometime soon.

i don't believe the future of books
will be determined by "publishers",
any more than the future of music
will be determined by the r.i.a.a.

their time has passed. they did a
good job, and deserve our thanks.
(and the money they milked from us.)
but their time is now officially over.
they are no longer in charge of us...

heck, even their _back-catalogs_
will come to be of very little value
if they insist on locking them up,
because the world of tomorrow will
have an abundance of content that
most authors will give away freely,
after having learned that the readers
will happily reciprocate financially...

that p-book you just paid $20 for?
the author got a buck. will you really
withhold your dollar from that author?
i gave a bigger tip than that at _lunch_,
to a waitress because she smiled at me.

this myth that writers will not write unless
we pay them is propagated by accountants.
i'm a writer and i know lots of other writers.
and we write because we _have_to_ write...

maybe the _accountants_ will stop working
if we don't pay them. (couldn't blame 'em.
and you know, that's really not a bad idea.)

but us writers will keep right on writing...
and we trust that our fans will reward us.

not only that, we actively look forward
to exercising a gift-based relationship
with fans, not the extortion-based one
of "pay me first if you want this book".

tomorrow's authors will take books
_directly_ to their readership. ergo,
what they need is a format that will
get out of their way when they write,
but give the high-powered functionality
readers will soon expect from e-books.

it's humorous to watch all this flurry
around formats and d.r.m. and such.
talk about barking up the wrong tree!
we're gonna be transforming society!
that's what the discussion needs to be!

-bowerbird
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Old 10-25-2006, 07:35 PM   #43
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Wow! Very intriguing. With respect to the author's viewpoints especially. I wonder how many feel that way, though. I hope many. Transforming society through new ways of making, selling, reading books is an awesome mission.
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Old 10-25-2006, 07:52 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bowerbird
i will be happy to shed some light;
not right now, but sometime soon.
... possibly the "zen markup language" you were referring to earlier?

http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=6644
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Old 10-25-2006, 08:05 PM   #45
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Hi, TadW. I'm making comparisons among existing products. You bet I'm still keen on a common format. Meanwhile folks can check out Jon Noring's take on Adobe DE at http://www.teleread.org/blog/?p=5702 .

Thanks,
David
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