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Permlink Replies: 10 - Pages: 1 - Last Post: Apr 26, 2012 4:25 AM Last Post By: booknookbiz
vanvanhorn

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Registered: 04/22/12
Invisible text
Posted: Apr 22, 2012 5:06 PM
 
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I'm working on my first-ever eBook which I hope to publish in a few days. I'm assembling the text in PageFour (a dedicated multi-chapter book editor which uses plain text) and then laying out the pages in InDesign, exporting to Mobi format with the current (0.96) Kindle export plug-in.

This is a book of quotes for Mother's Day, and all the quotes come from my database.

I have four paragraph styles and two character styles (no local formatting of any kind). I discovered that I can use character styles to italicize text but cannot use a paragraph style to italicize the paragraph and then a character style to revert to roman, but that's okay.

The one that has me stumped now is the paragraph style "Quote-key" which has the color set to "Paper" and the font set to half the size and leading of the other paragraph styles. Essentially the first line of each quote is the QID and AID (Quote ID and Author ID) from the database, information I really need to have in the file to avoid going mad but which is of no use to the reader.

This works just fine for the Kindle Fire (at least according to the Kindle Previewer) but the invisible text is showing on screen for all other readers.

Is there any way to hide this information from all devices? Or do I have to delete it all?

Van
jtbigtoad

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Registered: 08/01/10
Re: Invisible text
Posted: Apr 22, 2012 5:30 PM   in response to: vanvanhorn in response to: vanvanhorn
 
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It sort of sounds like you are using a nuclear reactor to make cupcakes!

the e-Ink kindles do not have many exotic capabilities

I think you need to delete invisible text

(Why would you use it?)

jt

;)
vanvanhorn

Posts: 8
Registered: 04/22/12
Re: Invisible text
Posted: Apr 22, 2012 6:09 PM   in response to: jtbigtoad in response to: jtbigtoad
 
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Well, there are a lot of people that use nuclear reactors to toast their bagels. The power has to come from somewhere!

Note that I'm not building a database to create e-books, I already have the database (73,000 quotes, 8,020 authors). The main website, the e-mails, and anything else I do with these quotes is tied to that database. If you don't start from a database you probably don't need to switch, but if you are using a database the fact that every AID and QID is unique has great value.

If, God forbid, some buyer tells me that I've spelled Emily Dickinson's name wrong, I want to fix it. But I only want to fix it one place (the author table) and then use the AID to track down every instance that doesn't automatically update. Like the InDesign files.

In serious publishing this is the norm.

Van
mrlasers

Posts: 1,633
Registered: 07/06/11
Re: Invisible text
Posted: Apr 22, 2012 10:05 PM   in response to: vanvanhorn in response to: vanvanhorn
 
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Why aren't you just writing the eBook files directly out of the database? For a book entirely made up of quotes pulled from a database this seems like it should be a no brainer.

If you're really set on putting the book together in InDesign (a poor tool for the job, but that doesn't seem to stop many people) I would [i]highly[/i] recommend just removing the text. There's no value in keeping them in the final eBook file. Just insert the IDs using a fixed pattern (ex: "[AID::QID]") and then remove them all via regex or wildcard search after saving your final changes but before outputting to Kindle format.

The other option would be to use the display:none CSS property.

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vanvanhorn

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Registered: 04/22/12
Re: Invisible text
Posted: Apr 23, 2012 3:30 PM   in response to: mrlasers in response to: mrlasers
 
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Not quite a "no brainer", but certainly something I'd like my brain to be able to do at some point. If the entire book were the result of a single query with no separate text I could actually do this now, including all the XML coding. The scripts to organize the quotes and narrative into chapters and then organize the chapters into a book goes just a little beyond me at this point. But that's definitely the direction I see this going.

And at that point I don't need any controls in the flow of the chapters because I'll never actually edit anything outside the authoring scripts.

But for now, I'd definitely like to have a line above each quote (for the vertical space) and to have my controls in there but set to not print. If that simply isn't something that can be done, I'll live without it. Given that this is all basically HTML at some point I'm surprised that it's difficult to do.

Van
mrlasers

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Registered: 07/06/11
Re: Invisible text
Posted: Apr 23, 2012 5:35 PM   in response to: vanvanhorn in response to: vanvanhorn
 
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As I said, display:none will remove content from the book.

CSS:
.hide { display:none; }

HTML:
<p>First line</p>
<p class='hide'>Second line</p>
<p>Third line</p>

Output:
First line
Third line

--
http://www.mrlasers.com
booknookbiz

Posts: 2,041
Registered: 03/04/10
Re: Invisible text
Posted: Apr 24, 2012 2:44 AM   in response to: mrlasers in response to: mrlasers
 
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As I said, display:none will remove content from the
book.

CSS:
.hide { display:none; }

HTML:
<p>First line</p>
<p class='hide'>Second line</p>
<p>Third line</p>

Output:
First line
Third line

--
http://www.mrlasers.com


mrlasers:

Are you quite certain that display:none is now working for K7? Because it hasn't for the past few years--I have not tried it post-2.4, however.

Hitch
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notjohn

Posts: 15,241
Registered: 01/06/10
Re: Invisible text
Posted: Apr 24, 2012 3:21 AM   in response to: vanvanhorn in response to: vanvanhorn
 
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**This is a book of quotes for Mother's Day, and all the quotes come from my database**

Far be it from me to rain on a Mother's Day parade, but be aware that Amazon might stomp on this submission as an internet scrape. I'm not sure that your database and CSS would be sufficient to deem the content "sufficiently differentiated."
vanvanhorn

Posts: 8
Registered: 04/22/12
Re: Invisible text
Posted: Apr 24, 2012 5:57 PM   in response to: notjohn in response to: notjohn
 
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Well, a search at Amazon on "quotations" yields 46,047 results, 1,134 of which are Kindle Edition, so I don't think they have much problem with the concept. I'm sure they've made a lot of money selling Bartlett's over the years.

I'm sure my CSS isn't going to be a factor, but my chapter introductions and curating of the quotes certainly should be sufficient.
mrlasers

Posts: 1,633
Registered: 07/06/11
Re: Invisible text
Posted: Apr 26, 2012 2:44 AM   in response to: booknookbiz in response to: booknookbiz
 
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Quite certain. Display:none support is pretty much the only notable addition in the release notes for 2.4. Seems like they cleaned up the KF8 support for it since 2.3 as well. In a few tests I ran it was a little flaky previously.

--
http://www.mrlasers.com
booknookbiz

Posts: 2,041
Registered: 03/04/10
Re: Invisible text
Posted: Apr 26, 2012 4:25 AM   in response to: mrlasers in response to: mrlasers
 
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mrlasers:

Thanks. We'd removed that from our house css, because it was useless, so I'd not tested it yet on 2.4.

Good to know, it could be very useful for fallback stylings on things like text-boxes for K8 that of course won't translate to K7.

Hitch
We produce ebooks
Listed as an Amazon Professional Conversion Service: http://bit.ly/uFwMwb
--and--An INScribe Preferred Conversion Partner
http://www.booknook.biz/
Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/BooknookBiz
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."
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