epub from Scientific Workplace

ambook's picture

I work for an educational publishing company, and we are wanting to convert the math books we create in Scientic Workplace to epub format so we can put them on e-readers like the Kindle and iPad. My issue is that there seems to be no easy way to do this. I know you can export to xhtml which is a step in the right direction, but I can't find a way to successfuly keep the formatting tags and images together to create a working epub file. PDFs don't work either.

Is there anyone who has tried this or knows how to do this? It's a pretty immediate need, so any input would be great.



tomprice's picture

 Hello, I used the geometry


I used the geometry package to format a mathematics document containing equations and graphics for the Kindle. The only negative I encountered is that hyperlinks did not work, so, for example, the TOC was not active. There is an alternative OS for the Kindle developed by a Chinese team; please see the thread at http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=105847. I have not used Duokan so I would be interested in you thoughts if you try it.






Barry MacKichan's picture

This is the situation as far

This is the situation as far as I could figure out the last time I looked into this, which was several months ago.

EPub is basically html or xhtml, but none of the implmentations I have seen seem to support MathML. The solution which is used for math is to put in small graphics to represent the mathematics. This is never very satisfactory, since the graphics cannot break at line ends or resize when the user changes the font size. In my opinion, the only acceptable ways to view mathematics on a portable device (iPad, Kindle, etc...) are:

  1. PDF. Despite its drawbacks, it show the mathematics well. We can produce PDF files with any page size, so a Kindle-sized PDF is easy to do.
  2. XHTML with MathML on a browser that supports MathML. I don't know of any on the Kindle or iOS (Apple) devices, but Firefox has a version that runs on the Android devices. I've never tried any tests on these devices.

I realize that what you want is EPub, but EPub just can't do justice to mathematics until some of the vendors implement MathML.

Our version 5.5 does has an export option to xhtml with all the mathematics represented as bitmap graphics (e.g., .png files). It should be fairly simple with XSLT to produce an EPub file which also uses .png files. i would worry about the quality of the results seen on a Kindle, though.

--Barry MacKichan

PS. I am not an expert on EPub, so if anyone has any corrections to my misconceptions, please chime in.

ambook's picture

Barry, Thank you so much for

Thank you so much for the reply. That is basically what I have run into so far. If we discover a way to make it work, I will definately let you know.

Thanks again.