Wikivoyage talk:Books

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Pedia press and the books extension

Swept in from the pub

Over on Wikipedia there is a 'book creation' facility. Could that be enabled here? Sfan00 IMG (talk) 12:49, 13 November 2012 (UTC)

You might want to take a look at the "Print/export" section in the left-hand sidebar. =) That said, though, we haven't yet established any policies on how the extension is going to be used, nor have we yet tagged any templates as non-printing. That will be a task after we officially launch, so don't go nuts creating books just yet. LtPowers (talk) 13:04, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
Just to note, the Help:Books page does not exist yet. It is a red link at the bottom of the page when you click "Create a book" in the sidebar. AHeneen (talk) 13:07, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
I just created it, actually. LtPowers (talk) 13:17, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
You beat me to it; I was just getting ready to create it! The Books extension has much potential and we would need to properly decide on how we will use it and promote it (ie, books for countries and templates at the bottom of articles, etc). Is that an issue for post-migration? It'll be a great little tool for new viewers when we finally officially launch. JamesA >talk 13:20, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
I am planning to provide some documentation and help texts in the next few days. As I am not an admin I might need some help. (Previously, I worked on the help pages for the book tool in en.wp and de.wp.) Ckepper (talk) 14:58, 16 January 2013 (UTC)
Thank you! But do keep in mind, we haven't had a discussion on how we want to use this extension yet. LtPowers (talk) 00:08, 17 January 2013 (UTC)

What needs to be done

So the feature works fine, we just need to create a policy and documentation on using the books? I'm starting this discussion to identify the issues that needs to get worked out (discussion on these issues can be done here, in a sub-section, or a different discussion). AHeneen (talk) 07:01, 10 February 2013 (UTC)

The feature works "fine", for certain meanings of the word. =) In particular, PediaPress's engine is designed to generate books from Wikipedia articles, not from Wikivoyage travel guides. For example, PediaPress generates the index for a book by looking at what words and phrases are wikilinked from the article. That doesn't work for Wikivoyage guides, with our much smaller domain of wikilinks; instead (or in addition), PediaPress should be looking at which words and phrases are bolded. (That's not perfect, either, of course, since we sometimes bold long phrases that shouldn't be indexed, but it's closer. We also have the Template:Index used for WT Press that could be repurposed to expand this functionality.) LtPowers (talk) 19:15, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
The name field in every individual {{listing}} is bold. Do we really want to index these? K7L (talk) 01:39, 17 February 2013 (UTC)
I don't see why not. But even if we didn't, I believe that's covered under my description of the technique as "not perfect". =) LtPowers (talk) 16:09, 17 February 2013 (UTC)

Books extension

It may be better to add a new extension "Book" for Community-maintained books, which are currently found and are named in the format "Wikivoyage:Books/name of book". Having this feature will also make it easier (someday in the future) to search books, by searching just pages in the "Book" extension (just like "Wikivoyage" or "Category" extension). AHeneen (talk) 07:01, 10 February 2013 (UTC)

I think you mean "namespace", not "extension". LtPowers (talk) 19:16, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
A namespace like this does exist on en.wp as Manual: K7L (talk) 19:52, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
Are you sure? I thought it was called "Book:". LtPowers (talk) 22:58, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
Not sure but this template referenced a namespace #100 named Manual:. As en.WP has 100 as Portal:, 102 as Book: and the books in Book:, I draw a blank as to where 100:Manual came from. It must have existed somewhere or it wouldn't have been in our template, but currently no custom namespaces exist on en.WV. K7L (talk) 01:36, 17 February 2013 (UTC)
I can't find any evidence of a Manual: namespace on en.wp. LtPowers (talk) 16:08, 17 February 2013 (UTC)
It's not on de.Wikivoyage either, 100:Portal, followed by namespaces for travel topic (theme), news and election - but no Manual:. Perhaps mediawiki.org? but there it has nothing to do with the special:book extension, mw:manual: is a stack of public-domain help pages intended to be imported to other wikis to document MediaWiki itself. Dunno. K7L (talk) 19:50, 25 February 2013 (UTC)

Creating guides for each country

Once everything is straightened up, I suggest the first major task would be to create guidebooks to each country which would include all pages within that country (set up in the correct geographical hierarchy) as well as all topics & itineraries within that country, relevant phrasebooks, and select universal travel topics (such as different activities, health, safety topics). This should bear some resemblence to the standard guidebooks published by the likes of Lonely Planet, Fodors, Moon, and others, which include not just destination content, but also a large background/general travel info/tips section. Could a bot do this, allowing created books to be polished by users after being uploaded as a community book? Useful/interesting books could be proposed at Wikivoyage:Requested articles. If this goes well, then we can move on to regions, both multi-nation (like South America or Central Asia) and intranational (like states/provinces). Perhaps this endeavor is worthy of an Expedition to coordinate this...like Wikivoyage:Guidebooks Expedition?AHeneen (talk) 07:01, 10 February 2013 (UTC)

Confirmation requirements

This page says I need to be autoconfirmed (at least four days old and 10 edits) in order to save a book.

I want to save a book so I can work on it over a span of several weeks. Is it really necessary for me to make 10 wiki edits in order to do that? I'm just trying to collect information in a format that will be useful to me when I'm on the road. —The preceding comment was added by Modulatrix (talkcontribs)

You don't have to make 10 edits; you can simply wait until the four days are up. It's a security measure to help us avoid malicious users abusing the system. Apologies for the inconvenience. As noted on the project page, this feature is still preliminary on Wikivoyage, and we're still deciding how we want it to be used; your input will be helpful! LtPowers (talk) 18:04, 25 February 2013 (UTC)
There's likely some means for a bureaucrat to manually give a user 'confirmed' or 'autoconfirmed' status, as it's just another bit like 'bot' or 'janitor'? K7L (talk) 19:41, 25 February 2013 (UTC)
The "confiremd user" permission exists, but it's not currently available for bureaucrats to assign. LtPowers (talk) 01:54, 26 February 2013 (UTC)

Is this useful?

A mostly Open Source system for book text management. Pressbooks. Is that something we can use? Or take ideas from? Or even code? Pashley (talk) 16:28, 28 February 2013 (UTC)

Looks to be WordPress-specific. K7L (talk) 21:58, 28 February 2013 (UTC)

Help PediaPress build printable Wikivoyage guides

Swept in from the pub

Interested in helping PediaPress, the creators of the Special:Book extension, curate printed travel guides made from Wikivoyage content? Please contact Heiko Hees at heiko dot hees at brainbot dot com. They're open to sharing the royalty, and a part of every book's proceeds goes to support the Wikimedia Foundation and thus Wikivoyage as well. Jpatokal (talk) 22:22, 29 January 2013 (UTC)

Splitting large books for rendering

Sven Manguard left this note:

"This collection of articles is too large for the rendering servers to properly handle, and as a result attempting to save the entire collection as a single PDF, epub, ODT, or ZIM or attempting to preview the entire collection with PediaPress is likely to fail. If you wish to export this collection as a PDF, epub, ODT, or ZIM or order it as a printed book, you should split the collection in half and save it as two PDF, epub, ODT, or ZIMs or have it printed as two books. If you need assistance doing this, please ask at Wikivoyage talk:Books."

The information is of general use, so the response might be useful for the project page. In any case this is where Sven suggested we ask, so here it is.

  • How should we best split a large collection to save or print as books?

Related questions:

  • How does one know if a book will be too large?
  • Is there an easy way of estimating the size of a book?

Not so directly related, but worth knowing if it is possible:

  • Is there a way to include high resolution map images in a book, as the in-wiki click on image to get to higher resolution image will not work on paper?

Cheers, • • • Peter (Southwood) (talk): 06:22, 12 May 2013 (UTC)

I'll answer the questions in the order you posed them:
  • Unfortunately the best way to split a large collection is to literally create two books, in the vein of Wikivoyage:Books/Diving the Cape Peninsula and False Bay - Part 1 and Wikivoyage:Books/Diving the Cape Peninsula and False Bay - Part 2 (or however you want to denote the split).
  • There isn't a concrete way to know if a book is too large in advance; trial and error is the only method of figuring it out. This is because the size cap isn't based on the number of articles or the size of those articles, but on how much data (digital information storage, i.e. megabytes) the articles take up. Articles with lots of images are going to be much larger in data size than articles with fewer images, and as far as I know no one knows the exact cutoff point between too large and not too large for the PDF/epub/ODT/ZIM renderer. My advice is to take it and split it roughly in half (say everything before the "Seaforth to Froggy Pond" section in one and "Seaforth to Froggy Pond" and beyond in the second) and then try to render each one as a PDF. If you're able to view the completed PDF for both halves, you're good. If not, try splitting it into three collections (the chapter breaks for "Hout Bay" and "Castle Rocks" would probably be good spots to start the second and third volumes) and try rendering it. It's worth keeping in mind that the difference between what is too much for a printed book and what is too much for a PDF are different. The collection as it stands now is 1121 pages as a PediaPress printed book, and the maximum that a printed book can handle is 800 pages, so even if you need to split the collection into three volumes to get the PDF to render, you'll only need to split it into two volumes to get it printed.
  • There really isn't a tried and true way of estimating the size of a book or a PDF in advance. A very, very rough estimate is that every one page in PDF form is two pages in printed book form, but because the way images and tables are sized differs between the two and because it was never designed to 2:1 ratio, that's not a perfect way of guesstimating. The best way to check how large a book is going to be as a printed PediaPress book is to click the [ Order Printed Book ] button, which will take you to the PediaPress website, where the total page numbers is on the right hand side of the website. I've already brought Diving the Cape Peninsula and False Bay over to PediaPress (which is how I know that it is 1121 pages). I'm honestly not sure if, should you decide to place an order, PediaPress will split the book automatically or whether it will throw an error message.
  • That is an excellent feature that would make a lot of sense to implement. I will share it with the PediaPress team when I speak to them tomorrow. Right now, though, it's not possible as far as I know.
Please let me know if I can help any further. If I get any new information, I will make sure to update you. Sven Manguard (talk) 22:08, 12 May 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for the information. I will look at logical breaks for volumes and split the book accordingly. It is not a book I would recommend for printing due to the length, but e-format is cheap.
How about a sub-article for the map? That should work to some degree. It would largely be a matter of getting the formatting and sizing sorted out. Is there a way of getting an image to be rotated 90 degrees when printing for landscape maps to fit portrait pages? • • • Peter (Southwood) (talk): 06:14, 13 May 2013 (UTC)
I have been trying to get it split into 4 books (in my user space), but after hours of work there is still only one. All the others seem to have evaporated. It is very frustrating. • • • Peter (Southwood) (talk): 17:20, 13 May 2013 (UTC)
Sorry, I was going to help last night but I got pulled away by an offline crisis. I'm going to try to see what the problem is now and see if I can fix it. Sven Manguard Wha? 14:26, 14 May 2013 (UTC)
It would be nice to have the ability to exclude images. In that way you could have much larger books covering (for instance) all of Europe, and be able to have this on an ebook reader with limited space. The ideal system would (in my opinion) be to have autogenerated books updated on a weekly basis covering the whole world or whole continents, in all the different output formats and both with or without images. Who is maintaining the book generating facilities? Mads.bahrt (talk) 14:52, 6 June 2014 (UTC)
Your best bet would be to visit mw:Extension:Collection, which is the home-base for the software extension that runs the Book facility. Powers (talk) 16:12, 6 June 2014 (UTC)

problem exporting to epub

This seems to be a better place than Travelers' Pub to ask a technical question on exporting books so here it goes: I'm trying to export my book to an epub to have it handy on a kindle when traveling (I love this feature) however no matter which format I choose it is always saving my book to a pdf. Is the functionality currently broken or is it something i'm doing wrong? Regards Iwwwwwwi (talk) 00:22, 7 December 2013 (UTC)iwwwwwwi

Is this problem unique to Wikivoyage, or do you have the same problem on Wikipedia as well? LtPowers (talk) 01:22, 9 December 2013 (UTC)

Where is this going?

It says that it's not complete. Yet the last comments on this talk page seem to be 2013. Where is this going? --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 20:12, 17 November 2018 (UTC)

Nowhere. The question would be whether this is a useful draft policy and one that could still be implemented. Can it be implemented? Ikan Kekek (talk) 22:41, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
If all of it is accurate, I think we may as well put it into effect. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 23:09, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
It would be best for some other people to comment first. Ikan Kekek (talk) 08:06, 18 November 2018 (UTC)
The Special:Book and Special:ElectronPdf links are still present on the sidebar, but following them gives warnings that mw:Reading/Web/PDF Functionality is somewhat broken. In any case, this document should not be policy; it's merely documentation of a technical nature which will need to be updated as WMF works the kinks out of the underlying server-side software. I'm tempted to hold off on this. K7L (talk) 08:28, 18 November 2018 (UTC)
Thanks for clarifying. Ikan Kekek (talk) 08:44, 18 November 2018 (UTC)
Yes --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 16:25, 18 November 2018 (UTC)