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Old 12-18-2006, 04:00 AM   #1
Sponge_Bath
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A repository for well laid out books

I thought it might be a great idea to start some sort of repository (if one has been started already somewhere else) of free books that are nicely laid out for the Sony.

I know you can get Sony formatted books from manybooks.net and then there's GutenMark but there's nothing like adding the human touch: A table of contents, properly linked footnotes, nice line spacing, etc.

So to get the repository started or to add to it if I'm too late, here's Beowulf in PDF format and an editable 'source' format in .doc.

Cheers.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Beowulf - Gummere.pdf (391.7 KB, 213 views)
File Type: doc Beowulf - Gummere.doc (308.0 KB, 222 views)
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Old 12-18-2006, 08:07 AM   #2
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Its a nice thought but, at least for now, the reader does not handle PDF format well enough to make it a format of choice for my use. For me, for now, LRF and RTF are the only choices.
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Old 12-18-2006, 09:22 AM   #3
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Isn't the usability of a pdf just a matter of whether or not it's properly formatted for the Reader? I've had no difficulties at all with the ones I've sized properly...

Thanks for the "Beowulf", Sponge Bath - with the Zemekis movie in production, I was planning to read it (for the first time, I'm sorry to say...
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Old 12-18-2006, 10:17 AM   #4
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Please guys! Be wary of copyrights, this is no pirate site!
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Old 12-18-2006, 10:37 AM   #5
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Well, said, yvanleterrible. While Beowulf ought to be safe enough (since it's not a Disney production ), the copyright issue is one we need to not lose sight of.
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Old 12-18-2006, 11:12 AM   #6
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Don't be so sure. Unless the Beowulf is one that is directly taken from the old English (which is quite likely unreadable to most but the true fan) or from an old translation of the text, it is probably a recent adaptation in modern verse. If so, the copyright attaches to the translation as an original work of the translator who readapts the work. An example is the recent Seamus Heaney translation. Copying such a modern rendition would be a copyright infringement. If this site wishes to stay away from copyright infringement issues it should not allow content.

Now, insofar as PDF's, the problem is with the rendition of the text. The PDF fonts are rendered graphically and are hard to read. Moreover, the fonts are not scalable as with RTF and LRF (although the entire image can be slightly enlarged one level). Since I want the best experience for my eyes, PDF's ain't the way to go for me.
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Old 12-27-2006, 05:12 AM   #7
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Hi Everyone,

I have just started my own repository of books that I have laid out for myself at:

http://www.box.net/public/pdbf4k8i6d

It will ONLY ever contain OUT-OF-COPYRIGHT material from Gutenberg, manybooks or the like.

At the moment it contains:
Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
Colonel Chabert - Honoré de Balzac
Vikram and the Vampire - Sir Richard F Burton (Footnotes are not yet linked)
Fanny Hill - John Cleland
The Idiot - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
The Rainbow - D H Lawrence
Women in Love - D H Lawrence

Books currently being laid out:
Various titles by Jane Austen
Various titles by Honoré de Balzac
1001 Nights All Volumes by Sir Richard F Burton (Volume 1 is done but no TOC)
Chess and Checkers: The Way to Mastership by Edward Lasker using the Cheq font
Various titles by D H Lawrence
and other titles or REQUESTS that pique my interest

All are in PDF format because I like the ITC Stone family of fonts, proper italics (not obliqued roman) and bold,fi fl ligatures, 1.5 line spacing, control over letter and word spacing, line breaks, A4 paper etc.

Cheers.
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Old 12-27-2006, 07:50 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sponge_Bath
Hi Everyone,I have just started my own repository of books that I have laid out for myself ...
After taking a quick glance at some of these titles, I'd be interested in learning what Sony Readers users think. What strikes me is that there are no margins (Pride and Prejudice, The Idiot): does this really work on the Reader?
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Old 12-27-2006, 08:28 AM   #9
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Instead of creating a repository, I'm working on a website that can generate exactly this kind of content in PDF and that you can customize to your own taste too, Sponge_Bath. Files are nice, but generating them is much flexible, this way you can add table of contents or create PDFs for more than a single device.
Take a look at the topic I've started: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...?threadid=9165
Still in beta, but we're working on removing any bug that we find, and we'll add more and more books in the first section of the website (btw, anyone can send a book too in this section, we'll just check if it's in the public domain or not before showing it on the website).
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Old 12-27-2006, 12:33 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ath
After taking a quick glance at some of these titles, I'd be interested in learning what Sony Readers users think. What strikes me is that there are no margins (Pride and Prejudice, The Idiot): does this really work on the Reader?
No margins works just fine; the "e-Ink" bit of the Reader doesn't go right up to the edge of the screen - there's a margin of about 4mm between the edge of the e-Ink and the edge of the screen. I create all my content with no margins.
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Old 12-27-2006, 01:00 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by HarryT
No margins works just fine; the "e-Ink" bit of the Reader doesn't go right up to the edge of the screen - there's a margin of about 4mm between the edge of the e-Ink and the edge of the screen. I create all my content with no margins.
I use a 1mm margin as a template on the reader. Most LRF that I've seen had margins that were much too large for my taste.
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Old 12-27-2006, 04:22 PM   #12
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4~5mm suits me just fine -- more words to the page.
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Old 12-27-2006, 04:43 PM   #13
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What I find confusing is Sponge _Bath's saying the PDF's are formatted for the Sony Reader. When I inspected Women in Love the mediabox was set to 595.276 x 841.89 aka 8.3" x 11.7".

This size forces the Sony Reader to scale the pages by half and not all of the kerning values are even. Thus resulting in half pixel positioning errors for the Reader to deal with.
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Old 12-27-2006, 04:51 PM   #14
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And PDF is my first *practical* choice for books on the Sony. *I* have control over font size -- no, it doesn't allow me to change them on the fly too well, but I don't care, since I chose the initial size in the first place. Yes, the Sony does a really bad job with serif fonts, so I use sans serif. I can include images and they work. I get a working table of contents. I get typeset quality layout. Page turns don't seem to take any longer than those of the LRF files I get from manybooks.

LRF might be better if I could find some LRF generating tools that I could make work, but so far I've had no luck with that.

RTF is inherently limited -- table of contents is not supported. I'll use it if I can find no alternative, but really, with a little effort I can turn rtf to good PDF.

Text has nothing going for it other than its universality and the ability to easily adjust font size. Since I can trivially turn text into typeset PDF (and with a little more effort, TOC), there's no point.
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Old 12-27-2006, 11:28 PM   #15
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And PDF is my first *practical* choice for books on the Sony. *I* have control over font size -- no, it doesn't allow me to change them on the fly too well, but I don't care, since I chose the initial size in the first place. Yes, the Sony does a really bad job with serif fonts, so I use sans serif. I can include images and they work. I get a working table of contents. I get typeset quality layout. Page turns don't seem to take any longer than those of the LRF files I get from manybooks.

LRF might be better if I could find some LRF generating tools that I could make work, but so far I've had no luck with that.

RTF is inherently limited -- table of contents is not supported. I'll use it if I can find no alternative, but really, with a little effort I can turn rtf to good PDF.

Text has nothing going for it other than its universality and the ability to easily adjust font size. Since I can trivially turn text into typeset PDF (and with a little more effort, TOC), there's no point.
I agree on all your points, that's exactly why we generate PDFs with feedbooks... LRF sounds like the only alternative IF we had some tools for it (latex2lrf anyone ?).
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