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Re: "Show me the metadata!" :), was Re: Rough sketch for WP

From: Boris Anthony <boris@rebus.foundation>
Date: Fri, 23 Sep 2016 16:21:48 +0100
Cc: Ivan Herman <ivan@w3.org>, Marcos Caceres <marcos@marcosc.com>, "Cramer, Dave" <dave.cramer@hbgusa.com>, Peter Krautzberger <peter.krautzberger@mathjax.org>, W3C Digital Publishing IG <public-digipub-ig@w3.org>, Michael Smith <mike@w3.org>
Message-Id: <83FBAA1E-2206-4A77-A49E-6DBF42CC3B8F@rebus.foundation>
To: Baldur Bjarnason <baldur@rebus.foundation>

And here attached are screenshots from my (locally hosted) personal ebook collection web service, which I built myself (it's an evolving prototype to experiment what UX is possible with, actually, the available metadata… for example in the overview, thumbnail sizes are set by ranges based on page counts, and other subtleties :)






:)
B.


______________________________________
Boris Anthony
Co-founder, Strategic Director
http://rebus.foundation



> On 22 Sep 2016, at 6 :12 PM, Baldur Bjarnason <baldur@rebus.foundation> wrote:
> 
> I figured I could do a quick overview of how the existing ePub ecosystem handles metadata, with screenshots. This focuses on trade publishing so YMMV.
> 
> The first thing to note is that the information below applies only to side-loaded ebooks. For ebooks bought through the retail channel, retail-level metadata often overrides embedded metadata. 
> 
> And it does so for a good reason:
> 
> A large portion of the trade publishing industry generally doesn’t embed any metadata to speak of, beyond just the title and author. At least one of the big trade publishers as a policy doesn’t even embed the cover in the ebook.
> 
> This, in turn, is also for a good reason: 
> 
> Embedded metadata is a huge pain to manage once you have more than a few titles. This is caused by the very portable and packaged nature of ePubs (packaged files are a logistical nightmare at scale). Packaged files combined with a clunky retail distribution system means that an ebook, once made, is hardly ever altered or updated, no matter what happens. This makes managing their embedded metadata very tricky once you’ve got more than a few titles.
> 
> Retail metadata is generally much easier. If your catalogue is big, you basically give the retailer an XML file with all of the metadata for your catalogue (usually ONIX, though other formats might be in use somewhere). If your catalogue is small, the web UIs for managing retail metadata are generally better designed and more easily understandable than using existing ePub editors or (shudder) hacking the ePub’s XML and then re-uploading the packaged file to all of the various retail websites you are selling through. Having minimal embedded metadata and focusing on retail metadata makes a lot of logistical sense for publishers. 
> 
> Finally, most reading systems don’t offer the level of metadata detail in their displays as Readium does, even the systems that are based on Readium (such as ADE for iOS). That’s because the reading systems tend to care more about reader-oriented metadata (e.g. organising their books into collections) or contextual data (e.g. selling you some other book to read) than about publisher supplied metadata. Partly this is a side effect of how retail-oriented publisher-supplied metadata is: they are of little use to a reader organising their collection.
> 
> Anyway, the first two examples are from Marvin, which caters to power users. The example book is The Bleeding Edge by Bob Hughes. You’ll note that despite their focus on expert users, the app doesn’t expose ISBNs or URNs. It does let the user edit the metadata, though.
> 
> <IMG_0326.jpg><IMG_0327.jpg>
> 
> The next one is from Kobo, which failed at side-loading Bob’s book, despite multiple attempts, so I’m using an example from a purchased book, Cat’s Eye, by Margaret Atwood.
> 
> <IMG_0328.jpg>
> 
> Next is the only example that exposes the URN/ISBN: ADE for iOS.
> 
> <IMG_0329.jpg>
> 
> Then there’s the most metadata rich display I found in iBooks (doesn’t show much at all).
> 
> <IMG_0330.jpg>
> 
> The best designed metadata UI I found was in Aldiko for iOS.
> 
> <IMG_0333.jpg>
> 
> Gerty, by the creator of Marvin, has a very user-oriented metadata view.
> 
> <IMG_0334.jpg>
> 
> Finally, Bluefire, which has the same level of detail as Aldiko in a slighly klunkier UI.
> 
> <IMG_0335.jpg>
> - best
> - Baldur Bjarnason
>   baldur@rebus.foundation
> 
> 
> 
>> On 22 Sep 2016, at 13:05, Ivan Herman <ivan@w3.org> wrote:
>> 
>>> 
>>> I'd still really would like to see this (visually) tho - specially in
>>> the use cases document. That is, it would be great to show _real_
>>> software (or even websites), and no hypotheticals tho.
>>> 
>> 
>> I attach a screen dump coming from the Readium reader. You can list the books you have catalogued in that instance of Readium (in this case running in Vivaldi), and you can klick on the details of the particular book. You get what you see on the screen; the data all come from the metadata appearing in the corresponding EPUB's manifest. (Not all metadata are displayed, not sure why.) In particular, the number 978… is an identifier set by O'Reilly. 
>> 
>> Not all ebook readers display that information; that is the choice of the individual reader app or software. As I said, not all readers display the _same_ information; but this falls under the differences among software.
>> 
>> Ivan
>> 
>> 
>> ----
>> Ivan Herman, W3C 
>> Digital Publishing Lead
>> Home: http://www.w3.org/People/Ivan/
>> mobile: +31-641044153
>> ORCID ID: http://orcid.org/0000-0003-0782-2704
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> <css_id_info_2.png>
> 
Received on Friday, 23 September 2016 15:22:24 UTC

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