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Old 05-09-2013, 08:30 AM   #1
moofychops
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Why No Text Reflow for PDF files.

I just cannot believe that in the 21st century someone would produce van e reader that did not have PDF reflow, to enable people to read books in various size text.
So it looks like this Kobo will be on ebay later todat,

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Old 05-09-2013, 08:42 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by moofychops View Post
I just cannot believe that in the 21st century someone would produce van e reader that did not have PDF reflow, to enable people to read books in various size text.
So it looks like this Kobo will be on ebay later todat,

You should be able to get a refund, since it's newer than 30 days
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Old 05-09-2013, 08:44 AM   #3
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Because Kobo seems to be using Adobe's software straight up... which doesn't support reflow, among other things. Amazon didn't either, last I looked. I think only Sony did anything different, or Onyx.

It's been mentioned here in the forums before. You don't get a lot of choices for heavy PDF support with ereaders. Adobe is, ironically, one of the worst at supporting it.
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Old 05-09-2013, 08:49 AM   #4
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There was something on the Odyssey HD web page, about PDF, but it didn't look that much into it so I'm not sure if that's what you're looking for.
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Old 05-09-2013, 10:08 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moofychops View Post
I just cannot believe that in the 21st century someone would produce van e reader that did not have PDF reflow, to enable people to read books in various size text.
I suspect that there are two reasons for this.

Kobo (along with the other big ereader vendors) are mostly focussed upon their book stores. This means that PDF support simply isn't a priority for them.

The other reason is that it's difficult to do reflow reliably. PDF is a page description language. Even though it is usually possible to untangle the text from the layout, that isn't how it was designed so funky things can happen. You don't want funky things to happen when you're selling a product. (Granted, Kobo hasn't quite figured that out yet.)
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Old 05-09-2013, 10:55 AM   #6
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Old 05-09-2013, 11:05 AM   #7
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Most PDFs do not support reflow. Some do, but they are in the minority.

PDF format was originally intended (1993, yes I was an acolyte :P ) to reproduce the printed page in a digital context. Although reflow tags were implemented, the original specifications never really envisaged dedicated ebook readers that we have now. As a result, the option to use reflow tags remains an option, not a requirement for those creating EPUB or other reflowable documents.

This limitation forces me to use an Android tablet for PDFs and a Kobo Glo for reflowable content. Unfortunate, but given the refresh limitations of current e-ink devices, a necessity. The fact that a device can "display" PDFs have very little to do with whether its practical. Its sad that so much of older digital documents on the net are in un-reflowable PDF format.

Reflowable vs fixed digital formats. Its time to raise the flag!

Last edited by kumaryu; 05-09-2013 at 11:26 AM.
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Old 05-09-2013, 03:09 PM   #8
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I was surprised when I opened a pdf on my Aura and it didn't have reflow. That being said, luckily for me I don't really care. It would be nice, but I can just convert stuff. I was going to get a Paperwhite and do that anyways but chose the Aura instead.
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Old 05-10-2013, 05:15 AM   #9
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After reading all the above posts, perhaps I was being hasty in wanting to sell off my Aura HD.
I sat and read a whole novel through last night (in epub) and the experience was superb, the quality and the clarity of the print was a delight to use.
Therefore the Aura HD will become a 'keeper' and I will buy a cheap Tablet with PDF reflow for my textbooks.
Thank you all
Ron
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Old 05-10-2013, 10:22 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moofychops View Post
After reading all the above posts, perhaps I was being hasty in wanting to sell off my Aura HD.
I sat and read a whole novel through last night (in epub) and the experience was superb, the quality and the clarity of the print was a delight to use.
Therefore the Aura HD will become a 'keeper' and I will buy a cheap Tablet with PDF reflow for my textbooks.
Thank you all
Ron
Looking back at your post, I realised that you wanted to change the size to make your pdfs readable on your Aura. Although there is no reflow and therefore no way to change the "font size" per se, you do know that you can zoom them, right? When I make a PDF fit to screen LR, I find the text size very readable.

Note: Right now there is a bug when using PDF that makes ghosting bad when moving around within a zoomed PDF. To get around this you can:
a) set the page refresh to 1 Page
b) tap to have the menu pop up and then close the menu, this also refreshes.

Note 2: If you wanted reflow not just to be able to change the font size, but also for highlighting, dictionary use and annotations, then it's true you partially lose these functions on your Aura. You can use dictionary, but must type in word. No highlighting is possible. Annotations are possible to make on bookmarks, but since you can't highlight, you can only make annotations per page not per selected text.

Since you referred to textbooks, I thought you might have more problems trying to read reflowed text, as any textbook that uses anything besides words (graphs, equations, etc etc) is unlikely to reflow properly anyway. This last comment is not based on personal experience as I don't have a device that reflows, but rather on comments from others who have stated that reflow is really only useful for novels or similar with no extras beyond writing. And based on my initial attempts to change some linguistic papers to epub before reading that any such engine is going to wreck formatting in a way not appropriate for something that isn't just words. And that reflow was similar.
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Old 05-10-2013, 02:41 PM   #11
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My old reader from 2010 has pdf reflow. Just using the available RMSDK pdf options.
It has three reading modes:
1. page mode
2. continues (page mode but with cropped pdf margins)
3. reflow
Full screen viewing (left icon in the footer) is possible for all three modes (hiding top header and bottom footer). It is also possible to zoom in on a specific part of the page (right icon footer: magnifying glass)

Just choosing the continues mode can make a pdf page just readable on a small 6 inch device.
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Old 05-10-2013, 03:43 PM   #12
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To be fair, a lot of ereaders don't seem to care about reflow that much anymore. Tablets took off and most people would rather use those for pdf's. I love reflow and thankfully my T1 does it well, but even I don't use it that much. When I do need it it's a lifesaver though.
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Old 05-10-2013, 04:01 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Haesslich View Post
Because Kobo seems to be using Adobe's software straight up... which doesn't support reflow, among other things. Amazon didn't either, last I looked. I think only Sony did anything different, or Onyx.

It's been mentioned here in the forums before. You don't get a lot of choices for heavy PDF support with ereaders. Adobe is, ironically, one of the worst at supporting it.
The Adobe RMSDK does support PDF reflow:
www.adobe.com/devnet/readermobile.html

While it is listed as a "New Feature" I'm pretty sure it has done this for at least a couple of years.

That said, I have never found reflow a very pleasant reading experience as there are usually many formatting artifacts that must be tolerated.

Sony probably has the best support and the most options (including reflow and on-device cropping).

BTW are you SURE Kobo does not have reflow? on Sony (and Nook ST) when you adjust the font size it invokes reflow.
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Old 05-10-2013, 04:19 PM   #14
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To be fair, a lot of ereaders don't seem to care about reflow that much anymore. Tablets took off and most people would rather use those for pdf's. I love reflow and thankfully my T1 does it well, but even I don't use it that much. When I do need it it's a lifesaver though.
Pocketbook is pretty good, though.
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Old 05-11-2013, 08:51 AM   #15
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BTW are you SURE Kobo does not have reflow? on Sony (and Nook ST) when you adjust the font size it invokes reflow.
None of the current Kobo e-readers have reflow support.
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