Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Clicklaw Wikibooks Adds EPUB Support for All Current Titles

As posted by Nathaniel Russell on the Clicklaw Blog October 8, 2013

Last week Clicklaw Wikibooks posted a complete set of EPUBs. Now every publication produced in partnership with the public legal education & information community in BC, including John-Paul Boyd, Cliff Thorstenson, and People’s Law School, can be downloaded for convenient offline reading on a compatible e-reader of the user’s choice. Here is a list of titles with links directly to the EPUB files:
A Clicklaw Wikibooks EPUB, much like a PDF, is produced within the Clicklaw Wikibooks environment and demonstrates again how varying formats can stem from one digital source. EPUB is a downloadable e-book format that is compatible with a very wide array of devices, one key exception being Amazon’s Kindle device, which uses a proprietary format.

Generally, all one now needs to take Clicklaw Wikibooks on the go is a standard e-reader such as a Kobo, iPad, or most any other tablet or digital ink-style e-reader. Even if you only want to read off of a computer or a smartphone, EPUBs are accessible so long as your device is equipped with the right software. Many users may already have one common application, OverDrive, installed, since OverDrive is required by some major library systems in BC that lend books in EPUB format. One notable, free and popular application is Calibre, which supports Mac, Windows and Linux users. iPhones and iPads come shipped with iBooks, which is a very clean and simple-to-use e-reader, and Android users also have many options to choose from.

Here is a composite look at how our growing collection looks on an iPad running the standard iBooks application (note that to download the EPUB, just look for the green icon circled below):



Like PDF, EPUB is a good format if you are reading at your own pace, don’t want to read from a website, or want to save the whole wikibook for when you are not online. Clicklaw Wikibooks are created and distributed with limited restrictions (we use a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada Licence) so you can email the format to a friend, and the EPUB file doesn’t “expire” as would ones you borrow from most libraries. EPUB is a newer standard format for e-book readers and is generally preferred for e-reader devices over PDF because the format scales easily to improve readability (it adapts to match the size of your screen—no columns or other non-essential formatting), it automatically hyperlinks a table of contents to improve navigation, and EPUBs support some of the more convenient features of e-readers such as bookmarking and personal notes.

As we work closely with public libraries we aim to help them integrate Clicklaw Wikibooks in EPUB format in catalogues province-wide.

Here is a complete list of all Clicklaw Wikibooks, which we will keep updating as more are added. For help about our use of e-books, print-on-demand, and other format options please consult the Clicklaw Wikibooks Print/Export Guide for more information.

No comments: