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Taking a Look At Kindle Format 8 76

Nate the greatest writes "Got a Kindle Fire? Here's your chance to try the new Kindle Format 8. The new format is in beta testing right now with a limited number of publishers, and a few days ago one of those publishers leaked the tools and the guidelines to me. It turns out KF8 isn't all that new. I've looked at the code, and I'd call it an attempt to graft a number of Epub features onto the existing Kindle format. It simply adds a lot of new formatting and is only slightly more capable than Epub. There's a number of screenshots at the link as well as a demo file. You can probably also find more KF8 ebooks in the Kindle Store; look for the Kindle Fire exclusive magazines and graphic novels."
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Taking a Look At Kindle Format 8

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  • by EponymousCustard ( 1442693 ) on Thursday December 15, 2011 @10:34AM (#38382744)
    It makes me sad that Amazon don't support it natively.
  • Re:"Exclusively" (Score:4, Informative)

    by 0123456 ( 636235 ) on Thursday December 15, 2011 @11:04AM (#38383094)

    With a tablet I see no use for an e-reader.

    I guess you don't read much, or you'd know how much better an e-ink screen is for reading books.

    Not to mention that I only have to recharge my Kindle every few weeks, so I just leave it plugged in when I connect it to my computer every now and again to download non-Amazon books to it.

  • Re:"Exclusively" (Score:5, Informative)

    by Nursie ( 632944 ) on Thursday December 15, 2011 @11:06AM (#38383110)

    "With a tablet I see no use for an e-reader."

    I've used both. I don't see a need for a tablet (I have a netbook), but the e-reader (kindle touch 3g) is pretty great. It's the ultra-long battery life and e-ink display that do it.

  • Re:"Exclusively" (Score:5, Informative)

    by TheRaven64 ( 641858 ) on Thursday December 15, 2011 @11:15AM (#38383216) Journal
    There's also the difference in size. The pictures really don't do the Kindle justice - I played with one in an airport shop and they're astonishingly thin and light. I have an iRex iLiad, which is one of the first generation of eInk devices. You could easily fit two or three 6" Kindles inside it. You could probably slip the kindle into a coat pocket without noticing. Doing that with the iLiad or a modern tablet would be difficult. The smallest tablet I own is a Nokia 770, and it fits, but it's much more bulky than a kindle. Most of the difference is the battery - a TFT screen draws a lot more power than eInk so an eInk device can get away with a tiny battery in comparison with a tablet (and a less power-hungry CPU, since you're not going to be playing back videos on the eBook reader).
  • I think the fact that Amazon uses a proprietary format is a heaping pile of crap, but that's as a user, not an author. As an author, I just upload the ePub I generated for B&N and let Amazon handle the conversion to whatever they call their zip file full of HTML.

    I use Scrivener [] to do my writing, and it exports to ePub directly. There's also a plugin that will export to Kindle format, if you want to do that. And it exports to Word, which is what I have to use for Smashwords. And it exports to PDF, which is what I use to edit. It's a fantastic piece of software.

    But, yes, the rest of the world needs to get on the ePub train. It's a really nice format, very fit for what it does.

  • by inflex ( 123318 ) on Thursday December 15, 2011 @11:53AM (#38383788) Homepage Journal

    As a general rule, PDFs cannot be reflowed (there is a new revision in the PDF standard that allows this now, but it's a bit of a crutch).

    ePub/mobi/what-ever-other-ebook-format is more akin to HTML than Postscript/PDF, as such eBooks can then be read on all manner of devices without knowing in advance the limitations of the output media. So it's fine if you have a nice 9~10" tablet to read the PDFs on, and things like datasheets for electronics work well in this format, but if you try it on a 5~6" display device it becomes a case of either scrolling/panning to read or reading with a lot of detail lost.

The shortest distance between two points is under construction. -- Noelie Alito