Fixing an epub problem – it now works also in iBooks

In my first attempt, the epub-version of book Into Programming did not open in iBooks on the iPad.

After some debugging i found the problem, and it is now fixed. It turned out that I had an extra blank line in the mimetype file, and that caused the problem.

It was a little bit tricky since the book opened fine in other readers, and it was also considered Ok when I did validation in Sigil.

Links to the book, in its different formats, are now collected on this blog’s Books page.

Adding meta-information to the e-book

The book Into Programming has pages that collect information about certain book items, like all the Figures and a list of the Concepts that are introduced in the book.

These pages (I call this type of information meta-information, since it collects information about the book) have now been added also to the e-book versions of Into Programming.

And these pages are view-specific also in the e-book version! (for example in the concept list, there are links to further reading and some of these links are selected for the programming language corresponding to the view, and others are common for all views)

You can try it out here

  • The mobi version, tested Ok in Kindle app on Android and iPad – Into Programming (mobi)
  • The epub version, tested Ok in Aldiko app and Reader app on Android and half-ok (external links not Ok) on Bluefire app on iPad – Into Programming (epub)

Enjoy! – I promise to add more content later – to make it a book that is useful also for learning programming 😉

An e-book with views

An e-book with views has been created!

The content is the same as is currently available in Into Programming (which is not that much – it is more a proof-of-concept as of now – more content will be added later).

I managed to create one mobi-version and one epub-version.

The mobi-version has been tested on an iPad using the Kindle for iPad, and on an Android phone using the Kindle for Android. It seems to work as expected in both of these cases.

The epub-version has been tested on an iPad using the Bluefire reader. It looks nice in this app, but external hyperlinks do not work.

The epub-version does not open in iBooks. I am trying to find out why this is the case.

The epub-version has been tested successfully however on an Android phone, in the Reader application and also the Aldiko application.

If you want to try, please do so:

An interactive index

Paper books often have an index. The index is a list, near the end of the book, where indexed words are given, often in alphabetical order, and for each indexed word, page numbers where the indexed word can be found are given.

In an electronic book on the web, an alternative is to create an interactive index. This can be done using a search box where the reader can type a word, and if the word is in the index, one or more links to where the word can be found are displayed.

In a Book with Views, one could go a step further, and let the indexed words be view-specific. This can be tried out, in the book Into Programming, for example by first searching for the word computer, which is in all views, and then searching for compiler and interpreter, which are not available in all views.

The search works in any page of the book.

There is also a traditional index, at the Index page, which is one of the About pages.

Keeping track of concepts

In a textbook kind of book, new concepts are introduced to the reader. In a book with hyperlinks, such as an e-book or a book on the web, it is possible to link the introduction of a concept to a table with all concepts in the book, bundled together with explanations, and perhaps also with links to be used for further reading.

In a Book with Views, this can be extended to a per-view handling of the concepts. You can see an example of this, in the introduction of the concepts variable and value in the beginning of the chapter called Names and values in the book Into Programming.

The collection of concepts can also be reached via the book’s About page.

View-specific URL references

When describing how to compile and run a program, you may want to refer to tools suitable for this task. These tools are often language-specific, like if you have a C-compiler it is good for precisely that task – compiling C-programs.

In a programming book with views, where each view represent a specific programming language, different tool references can be made for the different views. You can see an example of this in the Section How to make it run (use the menu on the left to change view), in the book Into Programming.

You can also see how the different URLs pointing to the different tools show up on the About page for URLs.


Books with Views

This is the first post on the Books with Views blog.

Here I will document the development of a system for creating books with views. These are books whose content can be viewed from different perspectives.

As a first project, there will be some books in the areas of software and embedded systems. These books are called The Intobooks.