I recently made a "book" via the PediaPress Book Creator prior to my
trip to India, and it has been delightful to use and read on the flight and
in my hotel room here. It had been awhile since I tried to make one, and I
wanted to say great work and good job to PediaPress! Also, the integration
with Kiwix was wonderful, and I love that it now shows up so seamlessly in
my "Library" within Kiwix.
I am not sure if you are aware, but in the recent Readership survey of
Wikipedia readers (from Sept 2011, which is only just now being analyzed),
the *number one request by readers was saving of articles for offline use
(as a PDF): *40% of readers said they would be MORE LIKELY to use Wikipedia
if such a service was available (note: this % is even higher in target
areas like India (50%) and Brazil (52%).* *This is fascinating, for it
shows that we (a) have a broader desire for offline content than just those
without Internet access, and (b) indicates there is great opportunity for
marketing the "Book Creator" tool.
I want to discuss the points needed to get to (b). The Book Creator tool is
great, and I think is the exact right type of tool to meet the needs of our
readers; but there is much room for improvements. Right now, I personally
find the experience getting to and from the Book Creator tool to be not as
straight forward as would be most beneficial. As this service has such a
huge demand, I think there are some opportunities for the refining of the
"book creator" tool and process. I'd love thoughts on the following and
- *Rebranding: *What are our thoughts on the title "Book Creator"? I
wonder if the title itself is a bit confusing, since people are apparently
unaware of the ability to download as PDF at all! Plus, I personally don't
utilize the tools as a means for creating an actual book, though I
recognize this was the initial purpose: I view it as a way to read a couple
specific articles offline. I think using the word "collection," which we do
informally anyway, is likely more appropriate here. Perhaps "Offline
Collection Creator" or "Article Aggregator" (both terrible ideas, I know,
but I'm just throwing things out there:))
- *Website placement: *I think it is obvious the space the Book Creator
takes on the Left Hand tool bar is not enough to draw attention to the
feature. I wonder if we should attempt to have some sort of a "Save for
Offline Use" button on each article, which would then open a new window
into the collection creator screen? This could look similar to the "Share
this" links which exist on most information websites (for Facebook,
Twitter, email, etc.). This could be next to the "Print" button.
- *Marketing: *Once we feel a bit more confident about usability, it
would be great to market the tool. We can do this in three phases:
- Phase 1: emails to different mailing lists announcing the project,
and asking for suggestions and feedback on the tools
- Phase 2: "pilot" testing of the tool, with banner advertising to
- Phase 3: advertise this functionality via a banner at the top of
- *Measurement*: clearly, we should have careful tracking of *books
created* and *downloads by file type* by day. @PediaPress: is this
I have some other ideas as well, but wanted to throw these out there for
some immediate reactions. What are people's thoughts? Any other ideas?
Anyone good with website design who could help with rearranging of the
"Book Creator"?? :)
Looking forward to the discussion (which should be moved onto a wiki soon) -
It seems to me that we should make a small improvement in the Metadata
We have currently the metadata "creator" which is defined as "creator of
the ZIM file" with as example "English speaking Wikipedia contributors"
and no "publisher" metadata at all.
This is IMO too few and confusing (definition does not match the example).
I propose to make following changes:
* Introduce the Metadata Publisher (available in the Dublin core
http://dublincore.org/documents/dces/) with the definition "creator of
the ZIM file" and as example ("user foobar")
* Modify the definition of "creator" to "creator(s) of the ZIM file
content" and no change to the example.
What do you mean about that?
We have released a new beta of the 0.9 branch. This beta fixes mainly a
freeze problem with Windows7 and introduces filter/sort feature in the
Here the complete CHANGELOG from http://changelog.kiwix.org :
* Fix regression, menu "last open" where not working anymore
* Fix regression, avoid restarting aria2 at program exit
* New content manager search/filter feature (ID: 3390515)
* Newly able to deal with more than one XML library feed
* Fixed missing link on feedback notification on OSX no growl (ID: 3419105)
* Better kiwix-serve default loading if no welcome page is defined in
ZIM (ID: 3417227)
* Fixed Freezes on Windows 7 (ID: 3422838)
* First version of kiwix-install
This version also introduces kiwix-install: a binary to easily build
Kiwix portable versions. You may test it if you use the Ubuntu packages
or compile yourself from the source code. More documentation and ports
will be soon available. As a first result, we provide pre-indexed ZIM
content directly packaged with Kiwix for Windows... which is perfect to
put on a USB stick for example... Have a look too http://www.kiwix.org
to know more.
Please test as much as possible the following points:
* sort/filter feature in the library
* Kiwix on Windows7 and Vista
* New feedback system introduced with beta3
* kiwix-install (if you can)
We still want to start the release candidate cycle ASAP but will try to
avoid xulrunner-dev dependences for the compilation (necessary to get
package of Ubuntu oneiric and further) and improve aria2 process mgmt
before (important for Windows users). Next release (probably a beta5)
will be out in around 4 weeks.
* Kiwix at https://sourceforge.net/tracker/index.php?group_id=175508
* Content at http://www.kiwix.org
Report bugs and request features at:
Stay tune at:
I discovered today OPDS (Open Publication Distribution System) which is
a XML feed norm to spread e-books catalogs. You may get more information at:
This seems to be pretty new but looks to be an interesting initiative. I
developed a straightforward XML feed for Kiwix content manager; this
works but using standards is often a better approach than re-inventing
the wheel (no idea why exactly I did not heard about that at the time I
was working on my own XML feed system).
Does someone have information/know-how/feedback about OPDS?