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Keith Fahlgren
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> Would you even try to read a book with a necessarily complex layout on a small display device like a phone, though? Yes, I personally would (and have). In practice there are an alarmingly high number of people who are willing to read complex and/or difficult content on very small screens. Footnotes are actually very trivial (bi-directional hyperlinks) and work better than print or PDF (IMHO). For a concrete example of digital titles with some real (print) layout but effective, thoughtful electronic versions, check out http://www.abookapart.com/. (I think you can sample them on the iBookstore.)
Toggle Commented Apr 10, 2012 on Books: Bits vs. Atoms at Coding Horror
You seem to imply that the problems you encountered with one ebook are inherent in the format: For books that are entirely text, with very little layout, the various eBook formats do a great job. Do you have any reason to believe that the ebook version of this title was carefully prepared? There is real time involved in making the “footnotes, layout and typography completely intact” in an ebook (just like there would be doing it for the generic Internet). If an eBook can't capture the nuance of the layout at least as well as a hoary old PDF does, again, why bother? Because the layout (and a PDF) are worthless on a phone.
Toggle Commented Apr 10, 2012 on Books: Bits vs. Atoms at Coding Horror
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Apr 10, 2012