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Paizo Publishing General Discussion


Hi,

I'm an happy orner of an iPad.
I've tested thé reading of Pathfinder rpg pdf's
And the title font (saber ...) is ont readable.

Is there any solution or could you embed thé font in the pdf ?

At this time i can't add a font to the iPad.

Txs.

Crush

Cheliax

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Well, there are ways to add fonts to an iPad, but you have to jailbreak it first. You're hardly the only person complaining about this. There are tons of iPad users complaining to Apple right now.


Kvantum wrote:
Well, there are ways to add fonts to an iPad, but you have to jailbreak it first. You're hardly the only person complaining about this. There are tons of iPad users complaining to Apple right now.

I don't want to jailbreak my iPad ...

I've send a question to Apple about that.

It's the only problem i havé with my iPad ;-)


Many larger companies either use an unusual font or make their own. It's not too hard to take an existing font with a font creation program and transpose it to make it unique. Also, the font is usually in the pdf already. So the issue is that if the jailbreak ipad could add fonts, it may not help. I'm not a total expert on this (others may be able to elaborate), but I was looking into doing this to cut down on the ability to modify released products (as Paizo probably does), but ended up not doing it to keep up compatibility. Just my 2 cp. I could be wrong. :p

Andoran

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I have no problems using GoodReader on my iphone. Have you tried that? Fonts all look fine.

S.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules Subscriber

I'm using GoodReader as well on both iPhone and on iPad. Only problem I've had is the "dropped A's" issue, which is pretty minor. So I assume you mean the Core Rulebook pdf, but which reader are you using?

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Crush wrote:

Hi,

I'm an happy orner of an iPad.
I've tested thé reading of Pathfinder rpg pdf's
And the title font (saber ...) is ont readable.

Is there any solution or could you embed thé font in the pdf ?

At this time i can't add a font to the iPad.

Txs.

Crush

The fonts—or at least the subset of characters used—are correctly embedded in the PDF. Apple just needs to fix the bugs in their PDF viewer!

Taldor

Stefan Hill wrote:

I have no problems using GoodReader on my iphone. Have you tried that? Fonts all look fine.

S.

I have Goodreader for both iPad and iPod and I have the problem he's talking about. Certain fonts, especially those on notes and titles(but not the main text) either drop the letter A or get scrambled at differing levels while magnified. I can sometimes zoom just right and it straightens out, but usually it's a garbled mess.

Grand Lodge

Vic Wertz wrote:
Crush wrote:

Hi,

I'm an happy orner of an iPad.
I've tested thé reading of Pathfinder rpg pdf's
And the title font (saber ...) is ont readable.

Is there any solution or could you embed thé font in the pdf ?

At this time i can't add a font to the iPad.

Txs.

Crush

The fonts—or at least the subset of characters used—are correctly embedded in the PDF. Apple just needs to fix the bugs in their PDF viewer!

This may be true, as I have this same problem (dropped letter 'A')on my Mac using Preview. That being said I only have this problem with Paizo's PDF's making me wonder if some of the issue is on the publisher's end.

Andoran

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Lord Transcona wrote:
This may be true, as I have this same problem (dropped letter 'A')on my Mac using Preview. That being said I only have this problem with Paizo's PDF's making me wonder if some of the issue is on the publisher's end.

Depending on how you look at it, it is either a problem with the font or with Apple. The font Paizo uses which causes this problem is encoded in a non-standard way, but for most other PDF readers they are flexible enough to allow for it. For a while in Mac OS 10.5, Apple was flexible enough to allow for it as well, but in 10.6 and the mobile OS's, the PDF libraries were changed where the problem cropped up again.

There are two solutions - one is Apple changes their PDF libraries to allow for the non-standard encoding that some fonts use (which should be easy for Apple to do, as it was something the built-in readers could do an OS ago). The other is Paizo licenses or contracts for a different font to use that behaves in Apple's PDF readers, but this can be really expensive - fonts ain't cheap.

Eventually, if Apple doesn't make a change to their PDF libraries, Paizo will likely have to make a call on what to do on their end, and it will be influenced by how much of their customer base is having a problem using the PDFs and if it is affecting their sales.

Taldor

Strangely, I have noticed this same issue every once in a while using the native pdf reader in Ubuntu Linux 10.04. I love being free from Adobe, but it does annoy me that they're the only browser that seems to display Paizo fonts properly.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Warforged Gardener wrote:
Strangely, I have noticed this same issue every once in a while using the native pdf reader in Ubuntu Linux 10.04. I love being free from Adobe, but it does annoy me that they're the only browser that seems to display Paizo fonts properly.

Have you checked for updates to that app? My understanding is that the bug in the underlying library used by most Linux PDF readers was fixed about a year ago...

Taldor

Vic Wertz wrote:
Warforged Gardener wrote:
Strangely, I have noticed this same issue every once in a while using the native pdf reader in Ubuntu Linux 10.04. I love being free from Adobe, but it does annoy me that they're the only browser that seems to display Paizo fonts properly.
Have you checked for updates to that app? My understanding is that the bug in the underlying library used by most Linux PDF readers was fixed about a year ago...

Ubuntu auto-updates. It's not a consistent problem in the Linux PDF reader. Most of the time, I don't see any problems, but older PDFs especially have it happen from time to time, as well as weird image rendering like alpha channels blocking the text because they've gone black(again, not consistently, only saw that happen once).

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Warforged Gardener wrote:
Vic Wertz wrote:
Warforged Gardener wrote:
Strangely, I have noticed this same issue every once in a while using the native pdf reader in Ubuntu Linux 10.04. I love being free from Adobe, but it does annoy me that they're the only browser that seems to display Paizo fonts properly.
Have you checked for updates to that app? My understanding is that the bug in the underlying library used by most Linux PDF readers was fixed about a year ago...
Ubuntu auto-updates. It's not a consistent problem in the Linux PDF reader. Most of the time, I don't see any problems, but older PDFs especially have it happen from time to time, as well as weird image rendering like alpha channels blocking the text because they've gone black(again, not consistently, only saw that happen once).

I'm not sure which reader you are using in Ubuntu, but I had very good luck with one called "Okular". I wish there was one that good in Windows, but I've yet to find it.


I don't do *nix, so can't compare to Okular. However, I have found that Foxit is very nice for Windows, and the reader is free.

-- david
Papa.DRB

Andrew Betts wrote:
I'm not sure which reader you are using in Ubuntu, but I had very good luck with one called "Okular". I wish there was one that good in Windows, but I've yet to find it.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Papa-DRB wrote:

I don't do *nix, so can't compare to Okular. However, I have found that Foxit is very nice for Windows, and the reader is free.

-- david
Papa.DRB

Andrew Betts wrote:
I'm not sure which reader you are using in Ubuntu, but I had very good luck with one called "Okular". I wish there was one that good in Windows, but I've yet to find it.

I've used FoxIt for years and while its a lighter client than Adobe's it just doesn't function as great as many think.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Andrew Betts wrote:
Papa-DRB wrote:

I don't do *nix, so can't compare to Okular. However, I have found that Foxit is very nice for Windows, and the reader is free.

-- david
Papa.DRB

Andrew Betts wrote:
I'm not sure which reader you are using in Ubuntu, but I had very good luck with one called "Okular". I wish there was one that good in Windows, but I've yet to find it.
I've used FoxIt for years and while its a lighter client than Adobe's it just doesn't function as great as many think.

True, I have found it problematic from time to time.


Crush wrote:

Hi,

I'm an happy orner of an iPad.
I've tested thé reading of Pathfinder rpg pdf's
And the title font (saber ...) is ont readable.

Is there any solution or could you embed thé font in the pdf ?

At this time i can't add a font to the iPad.

Txs.

Crush

I am new to purchasing pdf's from paizo and have both an iPad and MacBook pro. Currently every PDF I've gotten drops the 'A' in section titles or garbles some txt in places.

I've tried goodreader and iBooks with nonsuccess

Taldor

Mrbill317 wrote:
Crush wrote:

Hi,

I'm an happy orner of an iPad.
I've tested thé reading of Pathfinder rpg pdf's
And the title font (saber ...) is ont readable.

Is there any solution or could you embed thé font in the pdf ?

At this time i can't add a font to the iPad.

Txs.

Crush

I am new to purchasing pdf's from paizo and have both an iPad and MacBook pro. Currently every PDF I've gotten drops the 'A' in section titles or garbles some txt in places.

I've tried goodreader and iBooks with nonsuccess

Goodreader is more reliable, but there are apparently serious issues with any reader not made by Adobe. This could be part of Apple's criticism of them, could just be a limitation of e-readers.

Ogre said he has no problems with his Mac, so there may be a dividing line on apple products and font issues.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Warforged Gardener wrote:

Goodreader is more reliable, but there are apparently serious issues with any reader not made by Adobe. This could be part of Apple's criticism of them, could just be a limitation of e-readers.

Ogre said he has no problems with his Mac, so there may be a dividing line on apple products and font issues.

The issue isn't with non-adobe readers, its specifically that most readers have not updated a specific library (its been available for a couple years now). At one point Apple had worked it into Preview from what I'd heard, but then when they rolled another change later they took it out.


Warforged Gardener wrote:


Ubuntu auto-updates.

Disingenuous, as there are twenty bajillion different distros out there, with varying levels of support. For the record, I use Jaunty and the Eeebuntu remix on my laptop and netbook.

Taldor

F33b wrote:
Warforged Gardener wrote:


Ubuntu auto-updates.
Disingenuous, as there are twenty bajillion different distros out there, with varying levels of support. For the record, I use Jaunty and the Eeebuntu remix on my laptop and netbook.

Is disingenuous the word you really mean? You're basically calling me or my statement intentionally dishonest. Which is a little out of the blue.


Vic Wertz wrote:
Crush wrote:

Hi,

I'm an happy orner of an iPad.
I've tested thé reading of Pathfinder rpg pdf's
And the title font (saber ...) is ont readable.

Is there any solution or could you embed thé font in the pdf ?

At this time i can't add a font to the iPad.

Txs.

Crush

The fonts—or at least the subset of characters used—are correctly embedded in the PDF. Apple just needs to fix the bugs in their PDF viewer!

No I'm sorry, Apple is the big dog of ereaders right now and one of the few that can display your product in full color. Your in the business of selling PDFs. If an iPad won't display your products properly that's your problem not Apples. That it's caused by a bug in Apple software is no excuse. The end result is customers get a subpar experience and blame your product, it's incumbent upon your company to fix this if you want to coninue PDF sales. Or to put it another way what happens in three years if this bug is still not fixed but Apple has sold thirty million iPads in the meantime.

Grand Lodge

The Forgotten wrote:
Vic Wertz wrote:
Crush wrote:

Hi,

I'm an happy orner of an iPad.
I've tested thé reading of Pathfinder rpg pdf's
And the title font (saber ...) is ont readable.

Is there any solution or could you embed thé font in the pdf ?

At this time i can't add a font to the iPad.

Txs.

Crush

The fonts—or at least the subset of characters used—are correctly embedded in the PDF. Apple just needs to fix the bugs in their PDF viewer!
No I'm sorry, Apple is the big dog of ereaders right now and one of the few that can display your product in full color. Your in the business of selling PDFs. If an iPad won't display your products properly that's your problem not Apples. That it's caused by a bug in Apple software is no excuse. The end result is customers get a subpar experience and blame your product, it's incumbent upon your company to fix this if you want to coninue PDF sales. Or to put it another way what happens in three years if this bug is still not fixed but Apple has sold thirty million iPads in the meantime.

I have to agree with this whole heartedly. Apple sold a few million iPads in the first two months it was available. Even now, you are unlikely to be able to walk into any store (even an Apple store) and get an iPad. They cannot keep up with demand.

As an example of why I dislike this kind of response, I'll share a story... [Story Time!] I noticed my favorite local grocery store was starting to appear dirty more often. I went to the manager and complained. Took him around the store pointing out trash. His first response was "Well, it's the customers' fault." My response was it was their job to keep the store clean, not the customers'. He agreed. I think there were enough complaints because they cleaned up. (no I don't think I alone did it). [/Story Time]

If Someone comes up to me and asks how Paizo products work on the iPad, this is my response:

Paizo products are pretty useful on the iPad but not great. For some reason Paizo is the ONLY game publisher I have found that uses fonts that cannot be used on an iPad. For some reason they want to pass the blame and not take the initiative to fix a problem that they alone seem to have. I hear them blame Apple a lot, but honestly no one else has this same problem so I can't help but wonder who is REALLY the problem here.

Fundamentally, Paizo can blame Apple all they want, but so far the ONLY* company with this problem IS Paizo, so... ummm WHO should fix it?

*If there are others out there with this problem I have yet to find any of them.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Apple needs to fix it. If they software they use is incomplete it is their fault. That's all the further I will say on the matter.

Grand Lodge

ummm perhaps, but the thing is If the problem is restricted to one company alone, as far as I can tell Paizo is the only company with the problem, it is difficult to say it really is Apple's problem to begin with.

I make PDFs all the time for my games using odd fonts and never have any problems (and yes I use all Mac stuff just like Paizo does).

So if only ONE company is experiencing the problem I really have to wonder...

Lantern Lodge

Compact Font Specification wrote:

11Glyph Organization

The glyphs within a font constitute a charset and are accessed via an encoding. An encoding is an array of codes associated with some or all glyphs in a font and a charset is an array of “names” for all glyphs in the font. (In CFF these names are actually SIDs or CIDs, which must be unique.)
In order to understand how charsets, encodings, and glyphs are related in CFF it is useful to think of them as 3 “parallel” arrays that are indexed in unison. Thus, it is possible to name and encode the glyph at the given glyph index (GID) by using the GID to index the charset and encoding arrays, respectively. By definition the first glyph (GID 0) is “.notdef” and must be present in all fonts. Since this is always the case, it is not necessary to represent either the encoding (unencoded) or name (.notdef) for GID 0. Consequently, taking advantage of this optimization,

The problem is the spec says, don't put glyphs in GID0 its not defined, by the spec the other PDF viewers do the suggested optimization. Adobe doesn't, but it is the same way that microsoft breaks the HTML spec all the time in IE. It supports a disparate market that favours their bad product over any other.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

We know that one font we're using is built in a nonstandard way.

We also know that, despite the nonstandard build, it nevertheless works fine with every product in our workflow. That encompasses Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, and Acrobat, as well as the RIPs for several different laser printers by three different manufacturers. It also works fine with every single part of the press and prepress equipment that it has been used to print our books by at least four different printers in the US and China. It has also worked fine with every print bureau we've used to handle any of our prepress, proof printing, or promotional printing locally.

It also works fine with a host of PDF readers on every version of Windows. It works fine with current versions of most PDF readers on Linux—and if there are still ones that it doesn't work with, it's probably because they're compiled against an old version of a library that has already been corrected to deal with this particular font behavior, and once they're updated to a more recent version of the library, the problem will go away.

It also works fine with Adobe Reader on all versions of Mac OS X, and it even works with Apple's own Preview app on versions of OS X prior to 10.6.

The capital "A" drops out when used with Apple's Preview app on OS X 10.6 through 10.6.4, which appears to use an out-of-date version of a rendering library identical to (or descended from) the broken one that has already been fixed as mentioned above. The same problem also occurs on iPhone and iPad PDF readers that use Apple's PDF rendering library, which is presumably identical to or descended from the one used on the desktop OS.

Now, we could *probably* have the font adjusted so that it's no longer non-standard, but in doing so, we'd run the risk that some product we send to some printer somewhere would get matched up against the earlier version of the font, which could cause problems in entire runs of printed books, which would, quite frankly, be *far* worse than the situation we have now. It also wouldn't solve the problem for any of our existing PDFs, which would all have to be remade with the revised font. And it also wouldn't solve the problem for anybody else who uses this same font, or any other font built in the same manner.

Instead, we hope that Apple either directly addresses this bug—which we're told was reported to them by others well over a year ago, during the 10.6 beta test program, before anybody at Paizo even knew the problem existed—or we hope that Apple at least updates their software to use a more current version of the library that has presumably already been fixed for them.


Krome wrote:


So if only ONE company is experiencing the problem I really have to wonder...

My iPad, using also has problems with some of the Serenity RPG PDF fonts, so it seems that this is not a Paizo only issue.


Vic eighteen months ago Amazon released the Kindle, three months ago Apple released the iPad, last month ebook sales passed hardcovers on Amazon, one major paperback publisher announced that it was going to ebook + POD, and Barnes and Nobles announced that they would be cutting back the number of books they carry to build thousand square foot displays for the nook in all of their stores. By Christmas Apple will have sold something like ten million iPads, with a number of competing android and windows based tablets also slated for launch. E-ink readers have dropped from $225 to $135 and will probably hit $100 by Christmas. By next Christmas basic e-ink readers could fall to around $50.

It may be a PITA to change fonts but if you start the process now you can do it slowly and prospectively. If you wait six months, and Apple decides not to implement the new library because of Patent issues with Adobe (and keep in mind those two companies are already engaged in litigation over the iPad) this could easily grow from small issue to major customer gripe. Personally, I expect that within three years nearly 100% of your customer base will have some form of e-reader. Some planning on how to handle that now will save heartburn.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Maps Subscriber
The Forgotten wrote:

Vic eighteen months ago Amazon released the Kindle, three months ago Apple released the iPad, last month ebook sales passed hardcovers on Amazon, one major paperback publisher announced that it was going to ebook + POD, and Barnes and Nobles announced that they would be cutting back the number of books they carry to build thousand square foot displays for the nook in all of their stores. By Christmas Apple will have sold something like ten million iPads, with a number of competing android and windows based tablets also slated for launch. E-ink readers have dropped from $225 to $135 and will probably hit $100 by Christmas. By next Christmas basic e-ink readers could fall to around $50.

It may be a PITA to change fonts but if you start the process now you can do it slowly and prospectively. If you wait six months, and Apple decides not to implement the new library because of Patent issues with Adobe (and keep in mind those two companies are already engaged in litigation over the iPad) this could easily grow from small issue to major customer gripe. Personally, I expect that within three years nearly 100% of your customer base will have some form of e-reader. Some planning on how to handle that now will save heartburn.

But it's not only Pazio PDFs as pointed out.

Which means it is definitely an Apple issue. If everyone who posted here sent an email to Apple it probably would get fixed.

Not just, oh some one did complain already so they know about it. It needs to be a squeaky wheel that they fix because they are sick of hearing about it.

Sean


No not really. If Apple thinks it will help them in their fight with Adobe I expect the big will never get fixed. When Elephants fight it's the grass that suffers. With Adobe suing Apple for anti-trust over the lack of flash in the iPad the elephants are clearly duking it out.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Maps Subscriber
The Forgotten wrote:
No not really. If Apple thinks it will help them in their fight with Adobe I expect the big will never get fixed. When Elephants fight it's the grass that suffers. With Adobe suing Apple for anti-trust over the lack of flash in the iPad the elephants are clearly duking it out.

Some might not consider both parties elephants.

That is besides the point. Apple does listen to the squeaky wheels. MMS was finally added to the iPhone, cut and paste, etc.

Sean

Taldor

I'm not going to pretend I like Apple or even understand their battle royale with Adobe, but I like my iPad. I tried buying non-Apple products back when iPod was the cool new thing and had a baker's dozen break or prove incompatible before switching to iPod and Ive never looked back. Whatever I might think of Apple and their many many wrongbad policies and politics, their stuff works.

I like Paizo. Waaaaay more than I like Apple. If any other company was charging me for PDF products that don't work properly on my device, I would stop buying them. I want to believe Apple is the bad guy, but it doesn't make the PDF I bought work better. In all other ways, my iPad is doing exactly what it's supposed to. The Paizo PDF is not. If Paizo can take steps to correct the problem themselves, even if it takes a very long time to do so cheaply and safely for their products, I would really like the reassurance that they will try. Waiting for Apple to fix it may be the logical thing to do, but as someone else pointed out, Apple may not. And they won't lose sales because a narrow subset of PDF files don't display properly, but Paizo, the seller of those PDFs, will. It will be wrong and unjust and totally irresponsible of Apple, but it will be Paizo that suffers.

When WotC tried to flex it's muscles not so long ago, Paizo didn't wait around to see what the new status quo would be, it took matters in it's own hands and has built something that eclipsed WotC at the Ennies this year. I was there when Tim Hitchcock announced it to the room at GenCon and nothing made me prouder.

Don't wait for Apple to solve a problem that directly impacts the quality of your products. Especially if PDF sales might be linked to brick and mortar game subscriptions at some point in the future. The first thing one of those new customers might see when they open up their PDF on the iPad or tablet is a scrambled text box or a missing letter, and they're not going to blame Apple for that, no matter whose fault it really is.


Though I cannot speak to any problems encountered beyond the dropping of capital A's I do know that this is caused by a problem with Adobes software, not whatever PDF reader anyone may be using. It is not a problem limited to Paizo as many companies using Adobes tools to create PDF's end up with similar problems. Galnorag is spot on with his comparison to IE using non standard HTML protocols in order to make consumers dependent upon their software. Though I can understand that Paizo will be reluctant to consider changing the software they use (because everything is mostly running smoothly right now and they don't want to run the the risk that their release schedule might get backed up if there is a problem) the easiest solution is to change their software. I have friends both in computing and printing who say that there should be no problems if you take some very simple steps like ensuring you inform your printer of the change and have them do a few test copies just to be sure.

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