Frequently Asked Questions


Bandcamp for books, comics and magazines.

  1. What is Bubblin Superbooks?

    A social book reader for web.

    Bubblin is an online café of books—meaning, a calm and cozy place for book lovers to hang out and read interesting stories, comics or Superbooks . Enjoy a distraction free environment and with books served hot over the wire. Bubblin is free of charge, free of ads and doesn't require registration to be able to enjoy or share books.

  2. Are all the books free?

    Yes. All works on Bubblin are currently free to read and share. We are working on premium books and will be introducing those shortly.

    ☞ Please see question #18 below if you're interested in having your book published on web.
  3. How do I download a book?

    Explicit downloading is not required on Bubblin. Once you open a book on your browser, it will download and install itself automatically and continue to work offline gracefully. This process is frictionless and carried out seamlessly using a service worker under the hood.

  4. But, I like reading offline…

    Yes, all books on Bubblin are offline-first by default. You are covered if for some reason the device you're on looses connection to the Internet.

  5. Can I turn off page curls?

    Yes, definitely!

    Head over to Bubblin > Settings > Account > Page Turns to adjust speed or turn it off.

  6. Do I need to purchase hardware?

    No. Bubblin liberates digital books from properietary hardware and brings great reads straight on web. No investment in hardware or specialized software is required for you to be able to read books on Bubblin.

    We support all modern browsers, all devices and all operating systems.

  7. Is this another e-book format?

    No. Superbook is just an empty container that holds a stack of pages together.

    Page itself is an ordinary webpage, ala simple HTML, CSS and JavaScript (web format) strapped together and paginated using behavior and controls of a codex style book. We feel that it is a travesty for people to worry about file or format when all they want to do is read a good book. Books are not files to begin with, why talk of a file or format?

  8. How do Superbooks work?

    Head over to the concept page to see how Superbooks utilize native bifolium pagination using simple building blocks of web. In short, a Superbook is merely a stack of responsive virgin iframes paginated like a book.

  9. How is the support?

    A blank Superbook is supported everywhere.

  10. How is the support on e-readers?

    Not quite there yet.

    We tested on a few e-readers on market that sport a web browser but the results weren't satisfactory. One approach to solving this is to have Superbooks default to plain HTML with typical styling that scrolls when JavaScript is turned off. More updates on e-reader support, especially w.r.t WCAG 2.1 (2018) accessibility guidelines will be announced shortly.

    We discuss some of these issues, native behavior and accessibility consideration at length on the Frequently Raised Concerns page. Welcome to join the conversation and help us build a better system!

  11. What is a Superbook?

    Superbook means Superclass of a book, comics or magazine.

    Put simply, it is only a jacket that holds your longform together. More explanation about how it works is provided on our documentation. Key difference between a Superbook and an e-book is that Superbooks use a strong layout as opposed to a fixed or fluid one elsewhere. Each page is a virgin iframe, a sandboxed code playground, that accepts a very limited quantity of content that remains above the fold. Since the content of an iframe is ultimately good ol' HTML, CSS and JavaScript (i.e. building blocks of web) you can easily combine your frontend engineering skills along with storytelling to create classiest of books.

  12. Does it mean we can add code inside of books?

    Yes, absolutely! That's the magical part of it… 🙂

    As a writer you can add programming logic into your book to make it more meaningful. Output a visual experiment or an interactive explanation of any sort or put a piece of contextual substance that helps the reader understand or grasp a key concept easily.

    Example:

    View tidal locking between Earth and Moon explained on page number 39 of this demo book on The Solar System. Use keyboard shortcuts to navigate:

    arrow keys or the Space bar to turn the page. Press ⌘ + K to see more options.

    Trivially speaking, the content could be anything from plain text to GPU powered shaders. Given that a Superbook can render plain text simply, all novels, textbooks, magazine or comic books that exist as files outside of web can now easily be adapted on web.

    Readers can read, share and link to your book on web. Here we list some of the advantages of Superbooks over the traditional digital form that push the user away from web.

  13. Please list the main USPs:

    Sure. To begin with, Superbooks work everywhere: on every device, mobile, tablet, desktop and television on the planet. This makes it easy to for you (the writer) to reach your readers anywhere.

    Since we don't use a file system for distribution and rely on web instead, our books are way more accessible and shareable than on any other platform or option on market.

    Superbooks allow coding inside of book letting you create contextually relevant experiences over static rendered content. Such flexibility isn't possible on a lifeless file that lives outside of web.

    For example:

    1. Add a little canvas experiment in your physics book to explain pendulum motion.
    2. Code up a comics book with animated CSS3 characters instead of using heavy GIFs.
    3. Publish a photobook capturing all your memories at one place.
    4. Create a children's book with music and story that goes hand-in-hand.

    and so on…

    We believe that adapting books on web can lead us to a stronger and better web. A web where people can enjoy reading longform straight off their browsers. Without needing to download an artifact to the disk and without needing to own specialized and often closed hardware for books. It would also lead us to better books with endless creativity, likes of which we haven't seen before. To sum it up, web and books together means better access, better storytelling and thus a better world.

  14. Can I upload a file to publish it like a book?

    No, it is not that straightforward.

    Uploading a file and simply slapping a page turn interface on it makes it worse for your readers. In general a file is not a book to begin with, and nor is a file a part of open web natively, so we avoid using file terminology on Bubblin completely.

    Use First Principles thinking instead. Create web pages and format your story on it as if it were a clean simple website. Render it like a Superbook then. Look at Bookiza Abelone if you want to prepare your existing (ebook) file for book on web, ala Superbook.

  15. Can I publish on Bubblin?

    Absolutely! Start on our documentation page, but here's a quick summary:

    There are two methods to write and publish a Superbook:

    1. Use the in-browser editor on Bubblin, or
    2. Install Bookiza Abelone, an open source book reification framework for web.

    The first option (in-browser editor) is suitable for small one-off publications like comics or magazine. The second option i.e. Bookiza is a more professional setup meant for long hauls or something periodical. Bookiza comes with several pre-built templates for books of different genres and literature like textbooks, photobooks, novella etc.

  16. I use Scrivener, does it work for me?

    We're looking at integrating deeply with Scrivener using intermediary format called Markdown.

    An update will be made available when integration is completed.

  17. Does it work with MS Word too?

    It is possible but not recommended at all.

    Microsoft Office (Word) is an enterprise software meant for creating business documents like contracts or LOIs. Therefore, the quality of HTML that comes off of it for adoption on web is very poor. A lot has been written about this in past, but to repeat: if you're considering writing and publishing your book on web, we generally recommend you to avoid using MS Word completely.

  18. Is there a tutorial?

    Here's a quick one using the in-browser editor and layout templates.

  19. Can I sell my books?

    Yes, but licensed work only!

    For example, you can publish and sell all original and unencumbered works written by you. Or republish and sell public domain books with or without your own take on it: such as with new artwork, illustrations etc. In general, to be able to sell, you must be in possession of the right to do so for the material in question. Any content on Bubblin must not be prohibited per our forbidden list described on Terms of Service.

    ☞ Pricing tool feature is available only through invitation.
  20. Is this self-publishing?

    Not exactly. It's more like book making that inspires from app development techniques such as frontend development, push2deploy etc. Book writing isn't an individual activity. You'd need help from your friends, experts, illustration artists, layout designers, editors and other specialists to polish your work (enter Git) before it is ready for consumers.

    Bubblin and Bookiza will help you achieve good results for the work of your life.

    Starting a new book? Get in touch with us immediately.

  21. Is there an iOS or Android app?

    Native apps are planned. Our first love is web; also it is the last.

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