24 Jul 2012
After a lot of hours of work trying to find a program that would allow us to format Football Outsiders Almanac 2012 into a halfway-decent Kindle version, we're giving up. There won't be a Kindle version of the book this year, and given our experience this year, there probably won't ever be.
If you are wondering why, you can go back to this post and take a look at a couple of versions of the Dallas chapter we did for Kindle. They look awful. Everything we tried to do looked awful. We tried numerous different layout programs with no luck. We tried saving the tables as pictures rather than formatting them as text, and that didn't look good either. We tried every single thing that readers suggested, and everything was a mess.
The simple truth is that an e-ink reader is not designed for a book like ours. Take a look at this CNET review of the basic Kindle. The second picture shows a full screen of text. There are about 150 words there. Compare that to an average page of FOA 2012. I opened the book up at random, landed on a page in the Patriots chapter, and counted 850 words. Tables are an even bigger problem. We wouldn't be able to fit one team's entire Secondary or Front Seven table on a single Kindle screen.
We apologize if we got anyone's hopes up, but we really did want to make this happen. I have to admit that not owning one, I had no idea just how small the Kindle's screen actually is. Apparently, the PDF looks really good on an iPad, which has a bigger screen and is designed to show graphics instead of just text. I'm sure it looks fine on the Kindle Fire. But we just can't make an e-ink Kindle version that doesn't look like total crap.
11 comments, Last at 25 Jul 2012, 11:01am by MatMan