InDesign CC 2018 - Exporting to epub 3.0 with popup footnotes - convert to Mobi

New Here ,
Jun 07, 2018 Jun 07, 2018

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Hey everyone. I have a document that contains 100 or so footnotes. I have everything formatted for a proper epub export. Upon exporting and selecting the popup footnotes feature, I'm wondering if anyone can shed some light on if this is strictly meant for iBooks only or if this works for other platforms such as Amazon Kindle?

When opening the epub file within Adobe Editions, it seems that the footnote popup feature doesn't work. It instead links the footnote reference number to the footnotes that exist at the end of the section (Chapter). What seems weird is that the footnotes at the end of the section are just "there" without any context or numbering. They seem out of place.I

So my end goal here is to be able to properly convert this epub with popup footnotes over to Mobi to work on Amazon Kindle devices. To do this, I imported the epub into Amazon's Kindle Previewer software. Everything seems to look decent and the popup footnotes feature even works. My only concern is that all the footnotes are lumped together without any sort of context or reference numbers at the end of each section. Why is this? Everything else looks and works great but it seems odd when reaching the end of a section that all the footnotes are just placed directly after the main section content without any numbering or header identification or anything. Maybe this feature isn't meant for Kindle but it seems to get most of the functionality right.

I just wanted to post this here to see if anyone else is more familiar with this than I am. There doesn't seem to be any good info out there regarding this subject.

Thanks!

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Adobe Community Professional , Jun 10, 2018 Jun 10, 2018
This feature only works in the iBooks reader.

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New Here ,
Jun 10, 2018 Jun 10, 2018

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[Still scratching head over this] Anyone?

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 10, 2018 Jun 10, 2018

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This feature only works in the iBooks reader.

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New Here ,
Jun 12, 2018 Jun 12, 2018

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Thanks Derek. I was thinking that was so but wanted to make sure. I really wish this stuff would be standardized across the board.

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Community Beginner ,
Mar 07, 2022 Mar 07, 2022

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Hello,

4 years later I've got the same issue. I have import my .mobi file in my Kindle to test the display and the pop-up fonction for footnotes doesn't work. When I click the number, there's no pop-up opening but I am redirected at the end of the ebook with the similar display than dero14 : just a weird list of the content of all the footnotes with no number before or context. 

I have exported in epub 3, with the pop-up option activated so I am puzzled. I never had this issue before. Please can someone help me ?

 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 07, 2022 Mar 07, 2022

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MOBI is still the base for the Kindle format but KDP deprecated and all but abandoned it as a separate format more than a year ago. I wouldn't include it in any current workflow or usage. despite the plethora of tools and continuing suggestions to do so from the e-book community.

 

Kindle is a bit frustrating in that you cannot get a genuine, end-form document on a reader until it's up for sale and you buy a copy. The whole ecosystem needs at least a limited "author copy" and preview facet.

 

I've found Kindle Previewer to be highly accurate, though, especially if you keep it updated. I don't use pop-up footnotes (just too many issues) but *in general* if they link and test correctly in Previewer (by jumping to the notes at the end) they will work correctly (pop up) in the reader.

 

|| Word & InDesign to Kindle (& EPUB): a Professional Guide (v2 now on Amazon!)

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Community Beginner ,
Mar 08, 2022 Mar 08, 2022

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Thank you for your answer. I didn't know .mobi was deprecated by KDP! That's some news!

Still the problem of pop-up was the same with the .epub format tested on Google Books and Thorium. It was only working in Calibre's display system. 

Someone found a solution for me that might help others, it worked for me : in the html file in Calibre, I inserted between the <a href> </a> element of each footnote (aside) a non breakable space with the number of the footnote before. Givng : <a class = ....>1&nbsp;</a>, than <a class = ....>2&nbsp;</a>, and so on.

Indesign is an excellent program to create epub easily for non developer but it sometimes has its limits.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 08, 2022 Mar 08, 2022

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The bottom line is that there's no simple path to a 'perfect' EPUB. Which is frustrating for a widely used standard that's now over a decade old.

 

In general, though, if you're not going on through to Kindle, the best proof/review/test tool is Thorium. If it works in Thorium, it will work in every other reader of consequence — which pointedly means it may not work in some of the more idiosyncratic readers. Better (IMHO) to work to the widest range of most-standard readers and ler the others fall, no matter how popular they might be. Nearly all are free; (human) readers can switch easily.

 

I am often puzzled at the problems some ID users encounter in their exports. I've had some of my own, of course, but I can usually fix the glitch with a fairly standard "back up and try again" approach, especially the "save to IDML" process that cleans up document corruption and other faults. The stubborn linking and TOC problems so many report... sigh. These little inline hacks just shouldn't be needed. But all too often, they are.

 

|| Word & InDesign to Kindle (& EPUB): a Professional Guide (v2 now on Amazon!)

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Community Beginner ,
Mar 09, 2022 Mar 09, 2022

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Well Thorium seems to simply ignore InDesign pagebreaks included in the stylesheets, so I find it very frustrating to test my epubs with it... As you said, I test on several readers and cross my fingers.

Thanks again for your answers !

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 09, 2022 Mar 09, 2022

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The problem with page breaks is that they don't exist in EPUB. All documents are one flowing HTML text, and "pages" are a fiction imposed by some readers, like Thorium. The only way to force a page break is to split the EPUB contents into multiple XHTML component documents, which can be done from ID using the 'Split Document' options in paragraph styles and export. (Which is not really recommended for other reasons — kind of a step backwards in structure and compatibility.)

 

That said, I have never had a problem with Thorium recognizing page breaks from ID styles. It is one of the advantages of it over less-advanced readers that only recognize doc splits even if they paginate the document. The frustrating problem is space-above things like headings, which sometimes collapses when the heading is at page top but most times does not, leaving an awkward gap on a new page start. There's a consistent workaround but it's tedious to implement.

 

The problem with optimizing for any other reader is that the document is likely to be "un-optimal" for a greater number of readers; my experience has been that if you make it work right on Thorium, glitches tend to be minimal on others until you get out to older/quirky readers. There's no single perfect solution, not with EPUB.

 

|| Word & InDesign to Kindle (& EPUB): a Professional Guide (v2 now on Amazon!)

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