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Old 08-10-2010, 09:28 AM   #1
Dzha
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FBReader for Kindle

All,

I have got my hands on a new DXG yesterday.
The only thing I really liked about it is the screen. It looks good .
The rest of it, namely firmware/readers/library/controls can be described as complete crap . Whoever designed it for use with 3500 books, should show me how to navigate through this amount to a specific book. Simple use case, probably will take ages if you be able find anything at all. System is prohibitive when you try to organize your books yourself and puts them all into one pile anyway (inexcusable for modern software). Collections are laughable (and linked to the registration? - insult!). How much time do you need to manually create a collection and shove every book (out of 3500) into one?? Hours??

I've searched this forum, some other blogs/sources etc. and found that there is nothing alternative can be found. At the same time:

1. Kernel is open sauce, available, built independently.
2. QT is available with some great examples (like sudoku for kindle, includes keyboard, joystick and screen plugins)
3. FBreader source is available. Already ported to many Linux based platforms(maemo, irex).

So, isn't it just about making it all work together with kindle?
I think if we can all agree on approach then it is doable.
Of course proper PDF reader is a dream.

My view on approaches (out of naivety):

1. Build a layer on top the kernel to make it close to generic Unix platform and adopt existing open source apps for it. High effort, long term.
2. Build FBreader with QT (using the sudoku experience). Should be possible to run it stand alone and load fb2 from the file system. Medium effort, short term project.

Please, tell me what you think.
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Old 08-10-2010, 09:40 AM   #2
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I think it should be entirely possible to get FBreader working on the Kindle, but that's far above my level of expertise.
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Old 08-10-2010, 09:49 AM   #3
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If you bought the DXG, and dislike the functionality that much, why not just send it back and go for something else with what you need?
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Old 08-10-2010, 09:53 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by suecsi View Post
If you bought the DXG, and dislike the functionality that much, why not just send it back and go for something else with what you need?
Hmmm, might be a good idea actually.
Do you know of similar hardware quality 9.7" screen reader ?
Apart from Irex D1000 which is too expensive.
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Old 08-10-2010, 09:55 AM   #5
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Sony PRS 900?

Not used personally but Sony hardware usually pretty good. Only other large screen I can think of.
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Old 08-10-2010, 10:18 AM   #6
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Sony PRS 900?

Not used personally but Sony hardware usually pretty good. Only other large screen I can think of.
PRS 900 has 7.1 inches screen. I was looking for something larger, more like 10 inches.

Last edited by Dzha; 08-10-2010 at 10:32 AM.
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:09 AM   #7
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Have you tried searching on a title or phrase? That plus judicious use of collections and bookmarks helps me find what I need on either of my Kindles.
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:12 AM   #8
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A Netbook PC ?
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:14 AM   #9
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A Netbook PC ?
Already have one, my eyes disagree with it .
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:20 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dzha View Post

1. Build a layer on top the kernel to make it close to generic Unix platform and adopt existing open source apps for it. High effort, long term.
2. Build FBreader with QT (using the sudoku experience). Should be possible to run it stand alone and load fb2 from the file system. Medium effort, short term project.

Please, tell me what you think.

I think this is a great idea. I think a lot of people would like to see a feature like this.

However you are aware that the Kindle is running a full Linux version, it's Ubuntu 9.04 port to ARM. You don't need to build an abstraction layer.

I've never used FBreader. Is this program capable of managing a filesystem, (i.e. books) within the program? If so I would modify the initialization scripts to automatically launch FBreader. Set it to respawn in case the user closes the FBreader or it crashes the FBreader will restart.


Also the "QT experience" is a good place to start.

What I would like to see is a way to toggle between FBReader and Amazon's existing GUI. This way we get the best of both worlds, I know you don't care much for the Amazon skin, but some features are essential like reading DRM Mobi books.

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Old 08-10-2010, 11:24 AM   #11
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At least on the regular Kindle, if you hit a key for a letter that is the start of a title, the Home Page will jump to the first book beginning with that letter. Helps with jumping around in the Home Page.
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:31 AM   #12
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I use my netbook pc for reading kindle ebooks, epubs, fbbooks, mobireader etc. And it is also great for surfing and email.
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:55 AM   #13
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However you are aware that the Kindle is running a full Linux version, it's Ubuntu 9.04 port to ARM. You don't need to build an abstraction layer.
No, I did not know about this. Actually great news. Can simplify a lot of development work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by =X= View Post
I've never used FBreader. Is this program capable of managing a filesystem, (i.e. books) within the program? If so I would modify the initialization scripts to automatically launch FBreader. Set it to respawn in case the user closes the FBreader or it crashes the FBreader will restart.
See http://www.fbreader.org/. It does work with fb2 format. I use it on my Windows pc. Quote from their website:
"FBReader supports several e-book formats: oeb, epub, fb2. In future releases the list will be extended to support the same formats as the original FBReader. Direct reading from zip, tar and gzip archives is supported"
There is a version for Debian/Ubuntu, sources are also available. I had a quick look and saw that it can be built against qt for Ubuntu. I guess the problem is how to build it for a specific cpu target(s) (arm?). I've also seen some pointers to scratchbox tool chains for arm cpu.

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Originally Posted by =X= View Post
Also the "QT experience" is a good place to start.
I don't have any unfortunately. Can learn though. This guy's blog
http://www.griffin.net/2010/01/hacki...nd-sudoku.html mentions the following:
I've compiled the Qt software platform for the Kindle... and I've written plugins for the e-ink display, the keyboard, and the fiveway.
Does he mean qt plugins? I am not sure, actually thinking of contacting him and asking for sources.

Quote:
Originally Posted by =X= View Post
What I would like to see is a way to toggle between FBReader and Amazon's existing GUI. This way we get the best of both worlds, I know you don't care much for the Amazon skin, but some features are essential like reading DRM Mobi books.
Well if you can run an application (by pressing a hotkey ) then you should be able to run FBreader. I've seen some interest for epub reading on kindle on this forum's pages.

Last edited by Dzha; 08-10-2010 at 12:00 PM.
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Old 08-10-2010, 01:55 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dzha View Post
No, I did not know about this. Actually great news. Can simplify a lot of development work.



See http://www.fbreader.org/. It does work with fb2 format. I use it on my Windows pc. Quote from their website:
"FBReader supports several e-book formats: oeb, epub, fb2. In future releases the list will be extended to support the same formats as the original FBReader. Direct reading from zip, tar and gzip archives is supported"
There is a version for Debian/Ubuntu, sources are also available. I had a quick look and saw that it can be built against qt for Ubuntu. I guess the problem is how to build it for a specific cpu target(s) (arm?). I've also seen some pointers to scratchbox tool chains for arm cpu.
Okay nice, but just to clarify, I wasn't so much asking for file formats it supported, but file organization, since that was what your issue with Kindle is. Is it easy to manage files with FBReader?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dzha View Post
I don't have any unfortunately. Can learn though. This guy's blog
http://www.griffin.net/2010/01/hacki...nd-sudoku.html mentions the following:
I've compiled the Qt software platform for the Kindle... and I've written plugins for the e-ink display, the keyboard, and the fiveway.
Does he mean qt plugins? I am not sure, actually thinking of contacting him and asking for sources.
Here is another guy that did some extensive hacking.

There is another guy, his name is Jesse Vincent (Mobileread username is jyavenard), that really hacked up the Kindle. He also ported calire natively to the Kindle (mobilread post and his home page)


Here is video where he is giving a presentation on some of his hacks and thought process. (link)

Jump to 2:32 min.

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Old 08-10-2010, 02:04 PM   #15
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I love colelctions. It took me an hour or so to create and sort 300 or so books. Now I add a book to the appropriate collection(s) when I download it. It takes a few seconds.
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