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Ebooks are available in several
formats. This shows FBReader on
a HTC Evo Android smartphone using
Yosemite ebooks are also available
in text, HTML, Palm Doc, zTXT,
Sony LRF, iSilo, Mobipocket, PDF,
and Braille Grade 2 BRF.
For the convenience of reading ebooks from Yosemite Online Library (YOL) offline, we provide ebooks in several formats, listed below. All ebooks on this website are DRM-free (no license or unlocking required). Links for the various ebook formats are at the bottom of the main page for most books.
Today, most people use a tablet computer or smart phone to read ebooks. There's nothing wrong with using separate ebook readers, but most people don't want to spend money on an expensive gadget if it only does one thing, besides having the added inconvenience of carrying around yet another gadget. Ebook readers usually have better battery life than PDAs. If you’re in the market for a ebook reader, things to consider include battery life, screen glare (if used outside), free ebook file format support (including a format listed below), size (smaller for portability, or larger for readability), and cost. Memory and speed are usually not considerations with modern hardware.
You can read Plucker files on your Palm organizer or smartphone. Plucker is free software. Get the Plucker Viewer software here (not the distiller, parser, or desktop, but the viewer). This is the recommended format to download, if you have a device that reads Plucker files. We provide Plucker files with and without images.
If you have a Pocket PC, use Vade Mecum to read Plucker files. It’s Free. The webpage says it’s an Alpha release, but from reports it appears to work fine.
Our plucker ebooks are available either with black and white images or without images, both with zlib compression.
Hyper-Text Markup Language is the standard format of the World-Wide Web. Use any web browser to display this file format. Many ebook readers also support reading HTML files. We provide one HTML file per book with links to images. Compressed as a zip file.
Unzipping Files Modern versions MS Windows (Windows 95, 98, ME NT, 200, XP, and Vista) support zip files as a compressed folder. To extract or view files, either double click on the zip file and drag the HTML file out of the folder, or right click and select "extract." Note the directory where you save the file. For older Windows systems, use WinZip or Pkzip or other compression utility to extract the HTML file. For Mac OS X systems, zip files are called Archives and are supported. For older Mac systems, use third-party software such as StuffIt, ZipIt, or MacZip. For Linux and UNIX-class systems, use unzip or software provided with your X Windows File Manager.
A text file with no line breaks and without formatting, such as bold or italics, and without images. Plain text is best viewed with an editor like Windows Notepad. The advantage with plain text files it should work with about every ebook reader.
Compressed as a zip file. To extract the text file from the zip file, see the instructions for HTML above.
Plain text files are encoded in ISO-8859-1 (also known as Latin-1), which is supported on any MS Windows-class machine or better. It is suitable for English and most Western European languages.
Mobipocket ebooks, supported by the free Mobipocket Reader for many devices, are popular on smartphones. Mobipocket ebooks include text formatting, such as bold and italics, and images. Supported devices include MS Windows, Palm, Windows Mobile smartphone, Symbian (such as a Nokia 9300), Blackberry, Franklin, iLiad, BenQ-Siemens, Pepper-Pad, etc. For many of these devices (except for Palm or Windows Mobile), Mobipocket is probably already installed. Mobipocket is an ebook distributor owned by Amazon.com. FBReader is a free Android reader that supports .mobi.
iSilo is a popular, non-free reader available for Palm-enabled devices, Pocket PC, Windows Mobile smartphone, Symbian OS, and Windows CE Handheld, as well as for MS Windows computers. It currently costs $19.99. iSilo is popular because of its ease-of-use, high functionality, and availability on multiple devices. iSilo files have compressed, formatted text and images.
Sony PRS Reader is an ebook reader device that has an “almost paper-like display.” Sony Readers have their own format, Sony LRF, which has formatted text, such as bold and italics, and images. We generate LRF files without images, however. Sony Readers also play music, and display PDFs, images, and newsfeeds from the web.
zTXT (or zText) file format is highly-compressed format for Palm devices that requires its own reader. The file format is smaller than the older Palm Doc format because it uses zLib compression, but uses the same file extension, PDB. The display format is plain text without bold, italics, or images. Weasel Reader, reads ZTXT and is available free (formerly called Gutenpalm).
Portable Document Format (PDF) was created by Adobe for their Acrobat products. It is the de facto standard for electronic documents. Adobe PDF files, which include text formatting and images, are intended for printing or viewing on full-sized monitors or paper. When PDF files are scaled down to small screens, the file is not easily readable. Some e-book readers, have a pan-and-zoom feature that aids readability, but makes it inconvenient to read. A free reader is available from Adobe. It is available for several operating systems, including MS Windows, Mac, Linux, Solaris, AIX, and HP-UX. Adobe Reader for mobile devices is available for Pocket PC, Palm OS, and Symbian OS. The mobile reader requires your PD file to be converted first before use on your mobile device.
Grade 2 Braille or BRF files are intended for use by the blind. BRF files may be read online, or may be downloaded for offline viewing or embossing with a Braille display, Braille-aware note taker, or Braille embosser. Grade 2 Braille has special contractions for common letter combinations to save the number of pages required to print and reduce reading time. For information on BRF readers and embossers, see National Federation of the Blind’s technology page. BRF files are formatted 25 lines per page, 39 characters per line, with upper case only. No images or text formatting is available.
Other ebook file formats are not available, including Open eBook (OEB .opf), Microsoft Reader (LIT), and Rich Text Format (RTF). RTF is in the works. Software for Open eBook is rare—probably because it’s new. Conversion software for MS LIT files costs $$$. We can make these formats available if we can obtain free software that can automatically convert from plain text, HTML, or other format listed above. If you know of any such conversion software, please send a message to Dan Anderson.
For ebook viewer (reader) software, please see the links above. Ebook files are generated with this software: Info-zip to create zip files, Txt2pdbdoc and html2pdbtxt to generate plain text and PalmDoc files, Plucker distiller to build Plucker files, HTMLDoc to create PDF files, iSiloXC to create iSilo files, mobigen running under Wine to create Mobipocket Reader files, libprs500’s html2lrf running on Python to create Sony LRF files, and NFBTrans to generate Grade 2 Braille (NFB) files. All this software is free, although in many cases paid versions with support and more features are also available.
Copyright © 1997-2012 Dan Anderson. All rights reserved. All product names mentioned herein are the trademarks of their respective owners.
If you have questions or comments, please send a message to Dan Anderson.