Getting PDFs on ipod touch

Discussion in 'iPod touch' started by hamchoba, Sep 17, 2007.

  1. hamchoba

    hamchoba New Member

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    This post is long.

    One thing I've been lusting over is iPod Touch's capability to display PDFs in their native forms. I have finally acquired a 16g 'Touch (Why not call it iTube or youPod? Would be less iconic, more fitting), and I've been trying to turn this thing into a pocket library. Music and videos be damned.

    I know the issue of storing and viewing PDFs locally on iphone/touch is not a new one, but it certainly is one i would love to see resolved if and when local storage can be accessed easily. Since touch users cannot yet use the Mail .app, the only way store and accessing any file not accepted by itunes is to force them into bookmarks and place the bookmark into the Touch's Safari. For more info on storing files locally onto the 'touch/'phone, see the blog entry here:
    http://pimm.wordpress.com/2007/07/1...via-safari-instead-of-lame-email-attachments/


    There is a definite need for storing PDFs in their original form, as opposed to converting each page into a JPEG and syncing them to the Touch's Album. This issue continues to be brought up even though it has been discussed and tried. Here is why reading off photos is no good as it stands:
    1.) Splitting large PDFs, potentially hundreds of pages long into individual images is laborious and theoretically space-occupying versus a PDF.
    2.) Currently, the iPod/iTunes software downsamples the resolution of any image it syncs into its photo album, severely degrading readability of text in an extracted page.
    3.) Syncing images via iTunes limits the user to only one master photo library, preventing separation and organization of different pieces of literature.
    4.) I like lists.

    The method of embedding PDFs and other files (pictures, etc) into safari bookmarks works with the touch, and so far I know of two readily accessible implementations:

    URI Kitchen (which from what I see has a limit <1 mb):
    http://www.scalora.org/projects/uriencoder/
    or http://software.hixie.ch/utilities/cgi/data/data

    Filemark Maker:
    http://www.insanelygreattees.com/news/?p=51#comment-15254
    Filemark maker works pretty dern well, although I've run into some problems. See below...

    **I posted a step-by-step guide for Windows users in getting this process working, entry #30 in this thread:** http://www.ifans.com/forums/showpost.php?p=5148&postcount=30

    Mac users can simply install Filemark Maker and drag a PDF file onto the program icon. A Safari temp page will load generated by Filemark with the clickable embedded link. Add the link to your bookmarks. Can't be any easier.


    How to repair Safari if you stuffed too much into the bookmark file: (Resummarized this from a post farther down in the thread.) If you get Touch's Safari overloaded with PDFs and its bookmark database exceeds the maximum functional size as mentioned above, you can repair Safari without reformatting the player by replacing the bookmarks containing embedded information (pdfs, etc) with identically-labeled bookmarks that contain shorter information. This effectively "updates" the touch's bookmark database with a smaller one thereby removing the PDF info and restoring Safari to a functional status. The easiest way to go about this: bring up "all bookmarks" on your computer's Safari. For each link containing embedded PDF information, change the destination "address" to something short (can be a url, or just gibberish like "asdkjfhshk"... it just has to be enough to placehold the bookmark entry so it can exist to sync). Caution: embedded PDF/image info is usually too long to view in its entirety, so be sure to remove the entire entry before replacing. Once done, re-sync your computer's bookmarks with the Touch, and be sure to click on the "replace bookmarks" option before doing so. This should work.

    If you don't have the pdf-embedded bookmark entries (or even the names of the bookmark entries), you're kinda screwed, and as far as I know, you'll have to reformat the Touch to get its safari back into working order. I'm sorry.


    You can use a Bookmarklet to enable finding phrases in Safari which works when viewing XLS and DOC files but *not* PDFs.
    To increase visibility of this solution I'm linking to my post from here:
    http://www.ifans.com/forums/showthread.php?t=945

    One drawback to this method is that it cannot jump-to found phrases.


    I've cleaned up this post simply because I ended up answering my own question after trial and error and feel like I should share what I found to keep others from making the same mistakes I did:

    > Touch's Safari starts slowing down the larger the bookmark database gets. After having added approximately 4mb of embedded information into the bookmark database, Safari ceases to function and after having loaded on the touch, it hangs, then crashes. Incidentally, pdfs can be successfully embedded into the bookmarks and look fantastic when viewed.

    > Filemark Maker has a couple issues in its native form which prevents successful adding of embedded info directly to bookmarks for larger files (1.5-2mb) as well as ones with long or weird filenames. This is due to Filemark Maker generating a clickable hyperlink based on the filename. This issue can be fixed by deliberately toying with the source code that insanelygreattees made available for download. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, then I don't either, heh.

    > After a long 2 week battle, I have declared that right now, my dreams of storing multiple, lengthy, picturesque textbooks via file embedding is bunk as it encroaches on some sort of memory limit. It's a shame, since the best thing that this touch is capable of it can't actually do very well out of the box.


    Frankly, I'm feeling kinda screwed that the Touch can't do any of this out of the box. Not having a phone in the device is enough to cripple functionality-- wifi doesn't exist everywhere anyways. We're already paying $300+ for it, why not just let us use the same wi-fi programs??
  2. Matt

    Matt New Member

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    I have .pdf of a textbook for a class that is about 3 mb that I would love to be able to view on my Touch. The .pdf is password protected, and I doubt I could convert it to .html because it's filled with mathematical equations. I don't have my Touch to test it out yet, but does anyone know of a way that I could do this?
  3. hamchoba

    hamchoba New Member

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    well I'm starting to understand that my initial problem is not filemark's fault but perhaps safari's... when viewing the page source, the actual full ahref with the file is there! I even tried running the filemark perlscript from a windows machine and in the generated HTML page i could see the ahref file contents in the source even for files that i had aforementioned trouble with. Seeing as safari refuses to display the link in the web page, I tried pasting the link contents directly into the safari address bar. However, safari refuses to paste the whole string. Damn safari. I'm stuck again.

    And Matt, I'd imagine that regarding converting a math document into html, you'd still have to embed it into a URI. Furthermore, converting to html leads to loss of equation formatting and probably images too... We're both stuck.
  4. the_raider

    the_raider New Member

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    i just viewed the iPhone manual no problem.
  5. nintendodude

    nintendodude New Member

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    you're goin about it all wrong,

    open any PDF on a mac using Preview, go to File --> Print --> PDF(dropdown) --> Save PDF to iPhoto

    from there, create a new album called PDFs or whatever...

    sync up that album to your iPoT!!!!


    Simple, painless and fun!

    UPDATE:

    just did it, added the users guide for the iPoT from apple to my Touch, considering the images are nearly 1 MB a piece, they dont look so hot!!
  6. Matt

    Matt New Member

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    The problem with that for me is that the document prompts for a password because it has a restriction against printing.
  7. nintendodude

    nintendodude New Member

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    oh, that sux.

    if it isnt too many pages, do a print screen of each one and photoshop out the borders that dont belong, then re compile it to a pdf, or use the aformentioned instructions to get it on the iPoT
  8. AJL23

    AJL23 New Member

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    Just get some PDF password removing software. MacUpdate has some and if you have Windows there are loads of them. I have this for my Windows box and it's worked on everything I've tried it on.
  9. Matt

    Matt New Member

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    Ha it has 466.

    Yeah, I'm in no rush now, but that's probably going to be the route I'm going to go. The professor didn't require us to buy the book because it was available online for free which was great, but since it's a locked .pdf, it has been a pain to handle. It'd be nice to have it wherever I wanted it.
  10. mikespike2

    mikespike2 New Member

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    There are ways around a password locked pdf..

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