Popup footnotes in an e-book app
November 6, 2011 7:54 PM   Subscribe

Are there any iPad e-book reading apps that implement footnotes as a popup?

I've been spoiled by the Instapaper app, which now shows footnotes in a popup on the screen. This is a more elegant solution, in my opinion, to the endnotes view-then-click-to-return method that iBooks uses.

I'm contemplating reading Infinite Jest on the iPad, and I'm worried that I'll be bouncing back and forth over the hundreds of footnotes, so I'd prefer a popup solution.

A universal app would be nice, but iPad only is fine too.
posted by backwards guitar to Computers & Internet (2 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: EPUB books aren't really structured for pop-up endnotes. I guess it's not impossible that somebody could write a reader that was able to parse endnotes into popups, but as far as I know, nobody has. None of the major e-book vendors do notes this way in their official apps.

Also, keep in mind that some Infinite Jest notes are many pages long. I don't know how Instapaper handles their pop-up notes, but scrolling through a long endnote in a popup sounds unpleasant to me. YMMV.

I read Infinite Jest on a Nook Color and it was totally cool, way better than lugging around the paper copy and managing a system of 2 or 3 physical bookmarks. It can be a little bouncy between the text and the notes, yes, but at least you've got the power of hypertext on your side.
posted by zjacreman at 8:20 PM on November 6, 2011

When I asked a related question about Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norell, people assured me that the footnotes implementation in the Kindle app worked just fine for them. I ended up reading something else at the time, so I can't vouch for it myself.
posted by cabingirl at 11:35 AM on November 7, 2011

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