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Experimental Picture Book Capability Now Available in Stanza 2.1 for iPhone, iPod Touch

In Stanza 2.1, we released a new experimental feature for Picture Books, and I just realized that we never actually communicated about this feature to anyone. Please note that this is only available for Stanza iPhone and iPod Touch, and not Stanza Desktop.

The key point to realize is that when Stanza is told that something is a picture book, it will ignore almost all other tags. So this feature only works with image only books.

To turn an ePub into a picture book, add the following element to the metadata section of the content.opf file:

Where xxx describes how each image is displayed, and is one of:
- aspect-fit: Scale image to fit screen without changing aspect ratio (you might get a letterbox-like effect).
- aspect-fill: Scale image to fill screen without changing aspect ratio (part of the image may not be visible).
- fill: Scale image to fill screen exactly (image may be distorted).
- center: Just center image on the screen without changing its size (may have borders or overrun screen depending on size).

In picture book mode, we ONLY pay attention to image () and anchor () tags in the XHTML. We discard everything else. Each image becomes a page. Anchors can be used to establish navigation points within the section for the TOC.

Interestingly, we also parse the "alt" attribute of the image tags: when you perform a search, we search the "alt" text and bring you to the corresponding image.

Picture books are like other ePubs in that we load a single section file at a time. When you turn the page to a new section, the new page is blank until the section loads. So for the smoothest user experience it's best to group multiple images per section file and use internal anchors if you want separate TOC entries for different images in the section.

Warning: This feature is currently experimental and will not be officially supported.

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