Mobileread
Kindle iOS Text Cutoff
#1  mattmc 02-07-2020, 03:03 PM
Hey folks, been a few years. Seems like MobileRead hasn't changed a smidge

...I can't seem to avoid posting about K4iOS. For those of you wishing for more diversity in my content, please find forgiveness within you.

I have a pretty recent version of Kindle for iOS loaded on an iPad, and I side-loaded (via AZK) a book I'm working on. Looks decent overall, but occasionally (and particularly near the start of chapters) the layout engine will cut a line of text in half (horizontally) at the bottom of the page, so I only get a peek at the ascenders. The start of the next page has the bottom half of the mutilated line of text.

Once this happens, it tends to repeat throughout a chapter. Some chapters are not an issue, and if I use hyperlink navigation to jump around and change the reflow start point, I can often fake it out.

...Question is, before I spend 100 hours messing with my file, is this a known K4iOS bug, perhaps with a known solution?
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#2  jhowell 02-09-2020, 09:55 AM
I do not use the AZK sideloading feature and I have not seen any reports from others of the sort of problem you are experiencing. From your description it sounds like something in your content is triggering a bug in the renderer.

In case you are not already aware, AZK format makes use of the KCR renderer in the Kindle for iOS app. That renderer in turn uses the native HTML renderer provided by iOS. So any problems you experience may be related to the combination of Kindle app version and iOS version on your device.
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#3  Notjohn 02-09-2020, 09:59 AM
You didn't mention iTunes. It's my understanding that we can no longer sideload a book to an iPad or iPhone, but must do it through iTunes. Wouldn't that also be true of K4Mac?

I hasten to add that I have never used any Apple device save an ancient iPod and an almost-as-ancient iPhone 4, which is now on its second battery and which I use every day.
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#4  jhowell 02-09-2020, 10:16 AM
Quote Notjohn
You didn't mention iTunes. It's my understanding that we can no longer sideload a book to an iPad or iPhone, but must do it through iTunes. Wouldn't that also be true of K4Mac?
AZK files are sideloaded to the Kindle for iOS app using iTunes.

Kindle for Mac has its own way of doing things and does not rely on iTunes. Recent Kindle for Mac versions did away with the KF8 (azw3) renderer and instead converts books in KF8 format to AZK/KCR format for rendering.
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#5  Hitch 02-19-2020, 05:01 PM
Quote mattmc
Hey folks, been a few years. Seems like MobileRead hasn't changed a smidge

...I can't seem to avoid posting about K4iOS. For those of you wishing for more diversity in my content, please find forgiveness within you.

I have a pretty recent version of Kindle for iOS loaded on an iPad, and I side-loaded (via AZK) a book I'm working on. Looks decent overall, but occasionally (and particularly near the start of chapters) the layout engine will cut a line of text in half (horizontally) at the bottom of the page, so I only get a peek at the ascenders. The start of the next page has the bottom half of the mutilated line of text.

Once this happens, it tends to repeat throughout a chapter. Some chapters are not an issue, and if I use hyperlink navigation to jump around and change the reflow start point, I can often fake it out.

...Question is, before I spend 100 hours messing with my file, is this a known K4iOS bug, perhaps with a known solution?
I'm sorry--I've never seen this. Are you doing anything unusual with this file? Layoutwise? Setting widows, orphans, line-heights, or...?

Hitch
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#6  mattmc 02-22-2020, 12:10 AM
Quote jhowell
I do not use the AZK sideloading feature and I have not seen any reports from others of the sort of problem you are experiencing. From your description it sounds like something in your content is triggering a bug in the renderer.
Is there some other method of previewing books on K4iOS that you use? Or, do you not preview on K4iOS?

In talking to a buddy of mine, he has seen this effect with many books by a particular publisher, which is an interesting statement that I will have to pursue.

Yes, it does seem like something in the content, I figured as much

Quote jhowell
In case you are not already aware, AZK format makes use of the KCR renderer in the Kindle for iOS app. That renderer in turn uses the native HTML renderer provided by iOS. So any problems you experience may be related to the combination of Kindle app version and iOS version on your device.
I had some idea that AZK became KCR, but not that the renderer uses iOS's WebKit. I mean, it would make sense, but I guess they also figured out how to turn off the webkit debugger you normally have

(As a note, you guys also mentioned K4Mac--my issue is with K4iOS in particular.)

Quote Hitch
I'm sorry--I've never seen this. Are you doing anything unusual with this file? Layoutwise? Setting widows, orphans, line-heights, or...?

Hitch
I'll dig into the file and post back some of what I find, maybe it will be revealing. The next step after that will be to start hacking out styles and see what gives first...
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#7  jhowell 02-22-2020, 08:25 AM
Quote mattmc
Is there some other method of previewing books on K4iOS that you use? Or, do you not preview on K4iOS?
I believe that how a book renders as AZK/KCR is no longer relevant unless the book will not be supporting Enhanced Typesetting, such as a fixed layout children's book.

Most books will support ET and Amazon will deliver them in KFX format to the K4iOS app when actually published. (Perhaps a few customers still have iOS devices that only run a very outdated version of the app, but I doubt that there are very many of those left.)

I do occasionally want to see how a book will look under K4iOS, not because I am publishing, but because I want to understand how the Kindle platform works. I use my KFX Output calibre plugin in CLI mode to convert from EPUB to KFX and sideload that via iTunes. (Using the CLI mode of the plugin avoids manipulation of the book by calibre's conversion pipeline.)
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#8  Hitch 02-22-2020, 01:43 PM
Quote jhowell
I believe that how a book renders as AZK/KCR is no longer relevant unless the book will not be supporting Enhanced Typesetting, such as a fixed layout children's book.
Sez you {grumble grumble}. I wish someone would tell that to my clients. If I deal with one "I sent my mobi to my iPad and it looks HOOORRRIBLE!," complaint per week, I deal with 3. It's just...grrrrrrrrr.

Does anyone here think it's possible that the old xpgt doodad plays a part in this? The original iBooks app was built on ADE, right? I realize that sounds a bit backwards, but...I wonder. I mean, the cheapie shops, like the Big publishers used for backlists, used to just take the scanned crap, slam it into ePUB format, slam in an xpgt page template and then build the mobis by dropping the ePUB's OPF onto KG, right? I realize that we're talking K4iOS, not iBooks, but...I mean, what I've seen in the old big-shop backlist conversions is pretty criminal.

I realize that's an unformed idea, but I was trying to think what might cause that. I've NEVER seen this and that's bloody odd.


Quote
Most books will support ET and Amazon will deliver them in KFX format to the K4iOS app when actually published. (Perhaps a few customers still have iOS devices that only run a very outdated version of the app, but I doubt that there are very many of those left.)
Hmmmm..well, all my customers seem to have the old one.

Quote
I do occasionally want to see how a book will look under K4iOS, not because I am publishing, but because I want to understand how the Kindle platform works. I use my KFX Output calibre plugin in CLI mode to convert from EPUB to KFX and sideload that via iTunes. (Using the CLI mode of the plugin avoids manipulation of the book by calibre's conversion pipeline.)
Hunh, interesting. I don't think I knew that. Thanks!

Hitch
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#9  mattmc 02-27-2020, 06:03 PM
Quote jhowell
I believe that how a book renders as AZK/KCR is no longer relevant unless the book will not be supporting Enhanced Typesetting, such as a fixed layout children's book.

Most books will support ET and Amazon will deliver them in KFX format to the K4iOS app when actually published. (Perhaps a few customers still have iOS devices that only run a very outdated version of the app, but I doubt that there are very many of those left.)
Interesting, thanks.

Quote Hitch
Sez you {grumble grumble}. I wish someone would tell that to my clients. If I deal with one "I sent my mobi to my iPad and it looks HOOORRRIBLE!," complaint per week, I deal with 3. It's just...grrrrrrrrr.
That would be Send to Kindle, right? Which I think would still be a KF7? I think jhowell is specifically referring to what Amazon delivers to a purchaser when they download from their library.

In any case, I seem to have solved it. Near as I can tell, it was caused by a big initial capital, which was making the line height of the first line weird. That's a known Kindle bug in its own right, from what I recall, but this text cutoff might be related since as soon as I made the initial cap match the surrounding font, the problem went away.

Shrug.
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