OPDS

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Open Publication Distribution System
Internet media type application/atom+xml;profile=opds-catalog
Initial release 5 May 2010 (2010-05-05)
Latest release OPDS 1.1  / 27 June 2011; 3 years ago (2011-06-27)
Type of format web syndication
Extended from Atom
Open format? Yes
Website opds-spec.org/specs/

The Open Publication Distribution System (OPDS) Catalog format is a syndication format for electronic publications based on Atom and HTTP. OPDS Catalogs enable the aggregation, distribution, discovery, and acquisition of electronic publications. OPDS Catalogs use existing or emergent open standards and conventions, with a priority on simplicity.[1]

The Open Publication Distribution System specification is prepared by an informal grouping of partners, combining Internet Archive, O'Reilly Media, Feedbooks, OLPC, and others.

History[edit]

OPDS is based on the initial work done by Lexcycle,[2] the company behind Stanza, an eBook reader application for iOS.

All revisions of the specification were produced by an informal group organized around an open mailing list.[3]

Version history
Version Date
0.9[4] May 25, 2010
1.0[5] August 30, 2010
1.1[6] June 27, 2011


Example of OPDS 1.1 content[edit]

An example of an acquisition feed in OPDS:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<feed xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2005/Atom"
      xmlns:dc="http://purl.org/dc/terms/"
      xmlns:opds="http://opds-spec.org/2010/catalog">
  <id>urn:uuid:433a5d6a-0b8c-4933-af65-4ca4f02763eb</id>
 
  <link rel="related" 
        href="/opds-catalogs/vampire.farming.xml" 
        type="application/atom+xml;profile=opds-catalog;kind=acquisition"/>
  <link rel="self"    
        href="/opds-catalogs/unpopular.xml"
        type="application/atom+xml;profile=opds-catalog;kind=acquisition"/>
  <link rel="start"   
        href="/opds-catalogs/root.xml"
        type="application/atom+xml;profile=opds-catalog;kind=navigation"/>
  <link rel="up"      
        href="/opds-catalogs/root.xml"
        type="application/atom+xml;profile=opds-catalog;kind=navigation"/>
 
  <title>Unpopular Publications</title>
  <updated>2010-01-10T10:01:11Z</updated>
  <author>
    <name>Spec Writer</name>
    <uri>http://opds-spec.org</uri>
  </author>
 
  <entry>
    <title>Bob, Son of Bob</title>
    <id>urn:uuid:6409a00b-7bf2-405e-826c-3fdff0fd0734</id>
    <updated>2010-01-10T10:01:11Z</updated>
    <author>
      <name>Bob the Recursive</name>
      <uri>http://opds-spec.org/authors/1285</uri>
    </author>
    <dc:language>en</dc:language>
    <dc:issued>1917</dc:issued>
    <category scheme="http://www.bisg.org/standards/bisac_subject/index.html"
              term="FIC020000"
              label="FICTION / Men's Adventure"/>
    <summary>The story of the son of the Bob and the gallant part he played in
      the lives of a man and a woman.</summary>
 
    <link rel="http://opds-spec.org/image"     
          href="/covers/4561.lrg.png"
          type="image/png"/> 
    <link rel="http://opds-spec.org/image/thumbnail" 
          href="/covers/4561.thmb.gif"
          type="image/gif"/>
 
    <link rel="alternate"
          href="/opds-catalogs/entries/4571.complete.xml"
          type="application/atom+xml;type=entry;profile=opds-catalog" 
          title="Complete Catalog Entry for Bob, Son of Bob"/>
 
    <link rel="http://opds-spec.org/acquisition" 
          href="/content/free/4561.epub"
          type="application/epub+zip"/>
    <link rel="http://opds-spec.org/acquisition" 
          href="/content/free/4561.mobi"
          type="application/x-mobipocket-ebook"/>
  </entry>
 
  <entry>
    <title>Modern Online Philately</title>
    <id>urn:uuid:7b595b0c-e15c-4755-bf9a-b7019f5c1dab</id>
    <author>
      <name>Stampy McGee</name>
      <uri>http://opds-spec.org/authors/21285</uri>
    </author>
    <author>
      <name>Alice McGee</name>
      <uri>http://opds-spec.org/authors/21284</uri>
    </author>
    <author>
      <name>Harold McGee</name>
      <uri>http://opds-spec.org/authors/21283</uri>
    </author>
    <updated>2010-01-10T10:01:10Z</updated>
    <rights>Copyright (c) 2009, Stampy McGee</rights>
    <dc:identifier>urn:isbn:978029536341X</dc:identifier>
    <dc:publisher>StampMeOnline, Inc.</dc:publisher>
    <dc:language>en</dc:language>
    <dc:issued>2009-10-01</dc:issued>
    <content type="text">The definitive reference for the web-curious
      philatelist.</content>
 
    <link rel="http://opds-spec.org/image"     
          href="/covers/11241.lrg.jpg"
          type="image/jpeg"/> 
 
    <link rel="http://opds-spec.org/acquisition/buy" 
          href="/content/buy/11241.epub"
          type="application/epub+zip">
      <opds:price currencycode="USD">18.99</opds:price>
      <opds:price currencycode="GBP">11.99</opds:price>
    </link>
  </entry>
</feed>


OPDS Catalogs[edit]

Dozens of OPDS catalogs are available online, and in many different languages.[7]

Many users of OPDS also create their own OPDS catalog, as a way to access their ebooks from any device.[8]

Developers implementing an OPDS catalog usually use the Feedbooks catalog[9] as an example of a fully featured catalog. An OPDS validator is also available to test OPDS feeds.[10]

Comparison of OPDS clients[edit]

In order to test client compatibility, a test catalog is available as a GitHub project.[11]

Over a dozen OPDS clients are available on major platforms such as Android, iOS and Windows.[12]

This is a comparison for some of these clients, based on the results published for the test catalog.[13]

Core OPDS features[edit]

Product Navigation feeds Acquisition feeds Clear distinction between navigation/acquisition Pagination Search Support for full entries
Aldiko Yes Yes Yes Yes Limited to pre-loaded catalog Yes
Mantano Reader Yes Yes Yes Yes Partial support No
FBReader Yes Yes Yes Yes Partial support Yes
Bluefire Reader[14] Yes Yes Yes Yes Partial support No
Moon+ Reader[15] Yes Yes No Yes No No
eBook Search,[16] MegaReader[17] & QuickReader[18] Yes Yes Yes Yes Partial support Yes


Metadata and Images[edit]

Product Thumbnail Full image Title Author Contributor Language Publication date Summary Description Summary vs Description Rights Category Code vs Label in category
Aldiko Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Mantano Reader Yes Yes Yes Yes No Partial No Yes Yes Yes No Partial Yes
FBReader Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Bluefire Reader Yes Yes Yes Yes ? ? ? Yes Yes ? ? Yes Yes
Moon+ Reader Yes No Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Yes No No No
eBook Search, MegaReader & QuickReader Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes


Content acquisition[edit]

Product Generic acquisition Buy Borrow Open Access Subscribe Sample Multiple acquisition types Price and currency Indirect acquisition
Aldiko Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Mantano Reader Yes Yes No Yes No No No Yes No
FBReader Yes Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No
Bluefire Reader Yes Yes ? ? No ? ? Yes ?
Moon+ Reader Yes No No Yes No Partial support No No No
eBook Search, MegaReader & QuickReader Yes No No Yes No Partial support No No No


References[edit]

  1. ^ "OPDS Spec 1.1", OPDS Spec (technical specification), The Open Internet archive, 27 June 2011, retrieved 2013-05-07 .
  2. ^ "Project Goals". Official OPDS mailing list. Retrieved May 5, 2013.
  3. ^ "Official OPDS mailing list". Google Groups. Retrieved May 5, 2013.
  4. ^ "OPDS Spec 0.9". Official OPDS Website. Retrieved May 5, 2013.
  5. ^ "OPDS Spec 1.0". Official OPDS Website. Retrieved May 5, 2013.
  6. ^ "OPDS Spec 1.1". Official OPDS Website. Retrieved May 5, 2013.
  7. ^ "Online OPDS Catalogs". MobileRead Wiki. Retrieved 2011-05-19. 
  8. ^ "OPDS Catalog Generation". MobileRead Wiki. Retrieved 2011-05-19. 
  9. ^ "Feedbooks OPDS Catalog". Feedbooks. Retrieved 2011-05-19. 
  10. ^ "OPDS Validator". Retrieved 2011-05-19. 
  11. ^ "OPDS Test Catalog". Feedbooks. Retrieved 2011-05-15. 
  12. ^ "eBook Reading Software Supporting OPDS". MobileRead Wiki. Retrieved 2011-05-15. 
  13. ^ "OPDS clients compatibility". Retrieved 2011-05-17. 
  14. ^ "Bluefire Reader". Bluefire Productions, LLC. Retrieved 2013-05-14. 
  15. ^ "Moon+ Reader". Moon+. Retrieved 2013-05-14. 
  16. ^ "eBook Search". Inkstone Software, Inc. Retrieved 2013-05-14. 
  17. ^ "MegaReader". Inkstone Software, Inc. Retrieved 2013-05-14. 
  18. ^ "QuickReader". Inkstone Software, Inc. Retrieved 2013-05-14. 

External links[edit]

OPDS standard

OPDS working group links

OPDS evangelism

Other resources