Liza Daly is prominent in the eBook community as someone who knows the IDPF ePub spec inside and out.
She bought a Nook for testing purposes, afflicting it with ePub eBooks that are totally-compliant to the spec and which anyone is bound to encounter at some point.
The results were not good at all.
She details what happened in her post: Nook as an ePub renderer: review.
One part of this post concerns me, as I'm cited:
Here’s where things really fell down for me. I tried an edition of The People of the Abyss by Jack London. Mike Cane used this book to demonstrate some problems with ADE’s rendering.
This is a complex ebook though by no means an extreme outlier. It is hand-coded, which means that it doesn’t have unnecessary auto-generated markup, and it’s valid.
Now pay attention here:
In most books I tested, the re-formatting between chapters or font changes took between 4-5 seconds. That’s slightly longer than the Kindle 1 or Sony PRS-505, which are the two devices I have for comparison.
For this particular book, re-formatting a chapter or going to a new chapter took 30 seconds.
Boldfaced emphasis is in the original!
Frankly, I was shocked to read this. It’s the first time I’ve heard of any device performing this poorly on any ePub.
It also got under my skin and I asked someone to run that ePub of The People of the Abyss on his Archos 5 Internet Tablet with the Aldiko eBook reading software.
Here is a video of him doing just that:
It has no problems whatsoever!
I can quibble about the photos being cut off from page to page — but that’s something I think Aldiko can fix. What’s most important here is that the Nook really, really wasn’t in any shape to ship to customers.
It also drives home my point that eInk devices are low-end disppointing creatures bound for swift obsolescence next year as a flood of Android-powered mini-tablets enter stores. At some point, one of these will have the ability to do Adobe DRMed ePub eBooks — and then it’s all over for the eInk Squad.
And let’s not forget the entry of the Apple iTablet, either!
If you’d like to try that specific ePub of The People of the Abyss, it’s the first download in the list on this page.
If you own the new Camangi WebStation, try it on that and leave a Comment!
But hey — just don’t download it to try out. Read it too. It’s a great book and reflects our time right now.
Camangi WebStation Pre-Orders Are Go
Android OS/Archos 5 Internet Tablet Notes For Saturday November 28, 2009
Android OS/Archos 5 Internet Tablet Notes For Friday November 27, 2009
Syntron Android Mini-Tablet: 3G, 8.9″ Screen
Camangi Android Mini-Tablet: ePub Built-In
Android OS/Archos 5 Internet Tablet Notes For Monday November 2, 2009
The Coming Android Mini-Tablet Flood
Is Adobe Hindering eBooks?
Archos 5 Internet Tablet Notes For Sunday October 25, 2009
Dell Tops The Archos 5 Internet Tablet
Android OS Aldiko ePub Display Challenge
eBook Use On The Archos 5 Internet Tablet
eBook Notes For Monday, October 5, 2009