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Author Topic: Software update for newer Kindles (5.9.6)  (Read 1671 times)  

Offline barryem

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Re: Software update for newer Kindles (5.9.6)
« Reply #25 on: June 12, 2018, 11:51:23 AM »
I use Bookerly and I'm happy with it and don't plan to change.

I read paperback books most of my life.  I had absolutely no control over fonts, margins, weight, line spacing, size, serifs or no, or any other formatting issues.  In fact it never even occurred to me that I didn't have that control.  I was reading about characters and settings and time and events.

Now with an ereader I do have control over a lot of that and as time passes I have more and more control.  I'm 77 now and I really need control over the font size and I need the lighting.  The rest is nice but I really don't care that much.  What I want to know isn't about the look of the page but what's going to happen next in the book!

Barry

Offline Elk

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Re: Software update for newer Kindles (5.9.6)
« Reply #26 on: June 13, 2018, 08:55:02 AM »
For e-readers, font quality has been a secondary consideration at best. The focus has been on basic functionality. 

Quality book design, layout, and production is a minor art form I appreciate and enjoy.  It is one of the delights of reading a hard-copy book.  Some of us have long yearned for high quality e-book formatting - left justification, proper hyphenation, properly rendered fonts, true footnotes, chapter headings and pagination, etc. - which reflects the aesthetics of a "real" book.

Ideally, e-books would specify the layout in all respects and e-readers would properly render these details.  Until then, it is wonderful to be able to make choices as to font, font size, boldness, margins, and the like. (I would also like to see these options retained even if an e-book incorporates detailed instructions in how it should be presented.  We all have preferences, vision limitations, etc.)

I have on occasion wished a book, especially a paperback, was formatted differently.  But with a physical book one has no choice. 

I am impressed with the Bookerly font and find this to be a nice step forward. 

Offline Ann in Arlington

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Re: Software update for newer Kindles (5.9.6)
« Reply #27 on: June 13, 2018, 11:17:42 AM »

Ideally, e-books would specify the layout in all respects and e-readers would properly render these details.  Until then, it is wonderful to be able to make choices as to font, font size, boldness, margins, and the like. (I would also like to see these options retained even if an e-book incorporates detailed instructions in how it should be presented.  We all have preferences, vision limitations, etc.)



I disagree with this as a blanket statement. Or maybe I'm not understanding your position. Here's my take:

One of the reasons kindle is so great for me is that I can adjust the font to a size that is comfortable for me. If the book is 'locked' into a layout design the publisher specifies, I loose that benefit. And, in fact, I've gotten books that did just that. It's been a while -- probably 5 years or more -- and I think it happened more as an 'oops' than as a decision. Why is it a problem? If the font they lock it to is a sans serif font, I find that less comfortable to read for long periods of time. OR the size they specified was way to small or too large. In those cases I could usually adjust it with the kindle sizing feature, but it meant that when I switched to something else that hadn't been locked, I had to re-adjust everything. Annoying! It's also annoying if the publisher has locked really wide margins, or extra line breaks between paragraphs. That sort of thing feels totally amateurish. Anyway, years ago I think it mostly happened accidentally, and not really all that often, but if I find a book now that does any of these things I return it and explain to Amazon exactly why.

That said, there is a 'publisher font' option that the publisher can specify. I will usually check and see what font they publisher has set and use it if it's not uncomfortable. Problem is, I'm not sure the bolding option works with a publisher font, so if the font is nice, but the lines are too thin, I go back to Bookerly, which I find to be very very well designed for the Kindle.

My Kindles
Nautilus (Voyage)
Oasis 2016
AquaKindle
Godric's Hollow (Basic)
S7Edge (KApp for Android)
Galaxy (KApp for Android)
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Offline Elk

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Re: Software update for newer Kindles (5.9.6)
« Reply #28 on: June 13, 2018, 11:29:48 AM »
Which is precisely why my parenthetical comment that the ability to choose font, font size should additionally be retained.  :)

In this way we can appreciate and enjoy a quality book layout, while maintaining the ability to make changes if we absolutely cannot live with what the publisher intended.

I cannot recall picking up a book and finding it physically impossible or difficult to read. I doubt I would experience problem with a virtual book with a fully defined layout.  But retaining the ability to make changes to a virtual book would be valuable for many.

Offline Ann in Arlington

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Re: Software update for newer Kindles (5.9.6)
« Reply #29 on: June 13, 2018, 11:39:26 AM »
Which is precisely why my parenthetical comment that the ability to choose font, font size should additionally be retained.  :)


Well, that's kind of what the 'Publisher font' does. You can read it as the publisher envisioned, or use your own settings. I'm not sure, though that the 'publisher font' goes so far as to specify anything other than font style and size; pretty sure margin width, justification, etc. are not part of it.

I cannot recall picking up a book and finding it physically impossible or difficult to read.

Here's an example: I'm currently in a War and Peace book club. We're reading the translation linked. The PAPER* version is pretty thick even with it printed on very thin paper with smaller than standard print.** The smallness of the print would make it hard to read, and the size/weight would make it hard to hold. Plus, there are a lot of footnotes -- translations from the French as well as info about current society and what's going on with the war a the time, necessitating a lot of flipping to the back. Physically impossible? No. But difficult, yes. So: kindle edition is the way to go for me. :)


*talking about the paperback; hardback would be worse! :o

**not to mention more expensive though that's not at issue here. :)
« Last Edit: June 13, 2018, 11:42:30 AM by Ann in Arlington »

My Kindles
Nautilus (Voyage)
Oasis 2016
AquaKindle
Godric's Hollow (Basic)
S7Edge (KApp for Android)
Galaxy (KApp for Android)
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Offline patrickt

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Re: Software update for newer Kindles (5.9.6)
« Reply #30 on: June 13, 2018, 12:59:53 PM »
Oh, I can remember paper books I had trouble reading but then I have 70 years of reading to remember. I started young.

Offline Elk

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Re: Software update for newer Kindles (5.9.6)
« Reply #31 on: June 13, 2018, 01:49:37 PM »
The publisher's font is a nice start.  I would like to see this concept extended to all layout parameters.  A good publisher has put a great deal of care into how the book is presented, especially in hardcover.  A Kindle is capable of offering the reader the same experience (while necessarily leaving out the pleasant physical aspects, such as high paper quality in a quality book). 

I have read War and Peace in two different editions, both paperback.  While thick, and a bit of a bother to hold, the font size, layout, etc. was fine - both were very readable.  Footnotes are not an issue (at the foot of the page), endnotes require a second bookmark however.  Kindle's handling of endnotes is good, a little slower but handy.

Large tomes such as War and Peace are easier on a Kindle because of their physical size.  But this is not a layout issue, just lots of words.

One thing I miss when studying/discussing a text is the ability to quickly locate passages.  With a book, I remember where on a page (top, middle, close to the bottom, etc.) a passage resides and either left or right page.  By fanning the pages I can find the passage in a moment.  On an e-reader, the text floats and is not necessarily in the same place each time one accesses the page, and there is no equivalent of fanning.  (The page flip through feature is useful however.)  Typing in a search is slow, but accurate. 

In any event, the ability to load and incorporate specific fonts of choice into a book is a great addition to the firmware.

Offline Andra

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Re: Software update for newer Kindles (5.9.6)
« Reply #32 on: June 14, 2018, 08:07:38 AM »
I've been reading some older books recently and came across one that must be topaz format.  I can't bold the text and it is TINY.  When I make it large enough to be comfortable, I have to finish reading it before trying something else or I just get a few words on the page.
I didn't realize how much I'd gotten used to having the bold option.  It really does make a difference.

Offline Ann in Arlington

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Re: Software update for newer Kindles (5.9.6)
« Reply #33 on: June 14, 2018, 04:19:47 PM »
If I opened a book and it was like that, I'd first check to see if there's been an update to the file. If not, I'd find it unreadable. So, even if it's been a few years, I'd contact Amazon and explain, very politely, what the issue is, and ask what can they do for me. Maybe they'll refund the purchase price and take back the book. Maybe they'll say there's nothing to do. Either way, I'd delete the book from my library.

I'd also report it via the product page, and might write a review that explains the problem for other readers.

My Kindles
Nautilus (Voyage)
Oasis 2016
AquaKindle
Godric's Hollow (Basic)
S7Edge (KApp for Android)
Galaxy (KApp for Android)
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Offline Andra

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Re: Software update for newer Kindles (5.9.6)
« Reply #34 on: June 15, 2018, 09:55:48 AM »
If I opened a book and it was like that, I'd first check to see if there's been an update to the file. If not, I'd find it unreadable. So, even if it's been a few years, I'd contact Amazon and explain, very politely, what the issue is, and ask what can they do for me. Maybe they'll refund the purchase price and take back the book. Maybe they'll say there's nothing to do. Either way, I'd delete the book from my library.

I'd also report it via the product page, and might write a review that explains the problem for other readers.

It looks like rather than updating the existing book, they republished it with a new ASIN.  I am getting the sample of it and if it's better then I'm going to talk to Amazon.  I don't think I should have to purchase it twice to get a readable copy.  Now I don't remember if it annoyed me when I first read it back in 2011 or not...


EDIT TO ADD
Just got finished chatting with Amazon.  The author had submitted an update to the book, but since the update hadn't passed through all the quality control stuff it wasn't available for me in Manage Content.  But the CS rep was able to send it to my library.  Woot!
« Last Edit: June 15, 2018, 11:50:14 AM by Andra »

Offline Ann in Arlington

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Re: Software update for newer Kindles (5.9.6)
« Reply #35 on: June 15, 2018, 01:59:14 PM »
It looks like rather than updating the existing book, they republished it with a new ASIN.  I am getting the sample of it and if it's better then I'm going to talk to Amazon.  I don't think I should have to purchase it twice to get a readable copy.  Now I don't remember if it annoyed me when I first read it back in 2011 or not...


EDIT TO ADD
Just got finished chatting with Amazon.  The author had submitted an update to the book, but since the update hadn't passed through all the quality control stuff it wasn't available for me in Manage Content.  But the CS rep was able to send it to my library.  Woot!

Excellent outcome.

But, yeah, if they republished with a new ASIN, I'd still be in touch with Amazon to try to get the new, fixed, book without having to pay for it again.

My Kindles
Nautilus (Voyage)
Oasis 2016
AquaKindle
Godric's Hollow (Basic)
S7Edge (KApp for Android)
Galaxy (KApp for Android)
(Make your own reading bar) | Ann Von Hagel | Arlington, VA | kboards  MODERATOR