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I’m concerned

iTunes App titles

I recently bought the iTunes app version of "Python Cookbook" from O'Reilly Media and Lexcycle. It's great to see O'Reilly titles appearing for the medium of iPhone and iPod Touch. However, there is a serious flaw in the current implementation which chops lines of program code wider than the screen. As there isn't any (obvious) way to scroll horizontally, it means the reader can't see all of the code! This problem really needs to be solved for any books containing fix-width display font material, which is probably most of O'Reilly's titles.

I would like to buy more of these titles, but only after this problem has been fixed.
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  • Hi Francis,

    We're working with Lexcycle to fix this issue (it's unfortunately a common problem among ebook reading systems, including the Sony Reader). In the meantime, a simple workaround is to tilt the phone to trigger landscape mode -- that should fit the code onto the screen.
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  • Hi Andrew,

    Many thanks for your speedy reply. It's really good to know that the problem has been recognized and is being worked on.

    Unfortunately, although your suggested workaround does indeed truncate fewer of the long code lines, many remain chopped. (The first example I could find was in the chapter Aligning Strings where the code ".center(20), '|'" appears as ".cent" in landscape mode.)

    Also, some of the output (shown in Constant width bold) appears at the end of the producing code when it, when it should appear at the start of the next line. There are several examples of this anomaly in the chapter Converting Between Characters and Numeric Codes. This is a less serious problem in terms of usability than the truncated lines - at least the reader can see everything. However, it detracts from the overall impression and user experience. It would be considered a major typographic flaw in a printed book.

    Sorry to be the bringer of bad tidings - I truly want this endeavor to succeed.
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  • Hi Francis,

    Thanks for the detailed description of the problem you're having, that's very helpful for us and for Lexcycle/Stanza to try and improve the rendering. There are two other options for better display of the code: first is to reduce the font size (available in the App settings or by pinching). Second, the EPUB content is actually accessible from your computer (there's instructions in this blog post). That way you can have a version you can read using Bookworm, Adobe Digital Editions, or another EPUB reading system. I know that's not ideal, and I do appreciate your feedback and patience while we work to improve the display on our iPhone apps.
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  • I’m thankful
    Hi Andrew,

    The additional info and suggestions are appreciated - thanks! Reducing the text size does help, although at the smallest (which makes the text quite hard to read) there are still a few truncated lines where the code and output are shown in a single line.

    The EPUB content solution looks promising, but that costs extra, right?

    I feel much happier now that the iPhone apps may be improved.
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  • Hi Francis -- there's no additional charge to access the EPUB. It's just a part of the App. (Though we do also sell the EPUB files as part of our "ebook bundles" from oreilly.com.)

    Stanza is an EPUB reading system, and our Apps use the Stanza framework packaged with an individual EPUB ebook; we've chosen not to encrypt that EPUB content, so customers in your situation can get at the content (and for example back it up or move it to a different device).
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  • Wow, that's neat!

    Well, I unzipped the Python Cookbook app (PythonCook 1.0.ipa), installed Adobe Digital Editions, opened default.epub (the only .epub file in the bundle) and was surprised to see H.G.Wells' "The Time Machine" appear. I tried to open the rather larger PythonCook file, but DE just showed a blank page.

    On the other hand, I was pleased to see the complete book in html format, in the folder OEBPS. That could be very useful in terms of cutting and pasting code into Python.
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  • I’m sad
    Hi,

    I just bought the iphone app "SQL in a Nutshell" from oreilly. The pages are to big for the screen. So i see only the left piece of a page, and sentences are cut at the end.

    Is there a way to see the right piece of a page ?
    In landscape mode, everything is fine, but i don't want to use landscape mode for reading.

    best regards

    This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
    SQL Nutshell iphone app : screen to small.
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  • Hi Kurt,

    Please take a look at the answers above, I hope they will help.

    Let us know if you have any questions.

    Thanks,

    Rachel
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