A new *unofficial* reader application for j-novel.club

  • Premium Member

    Hi there,

    as you might know, there is already an official app for Android and iOS to read j-novel.club's novels, as well as an unofficial one for Windows Phone and Windows 10. However, on Linux (and MacOS, for that matter), our only choice so far has been the website. Which, while functional, might not have everything one longs for.

    So, what does on do in that case? Well, obviously one writes ones own application. So I semi-proudly present to you: JNovelReader. You can find a more in-depth description at it's git repo, download the source code of it's initial release or, if you have a 64-bit Windows installation, you can download a prebuild application from here.

    Note that I cannot guarantee that the prebuild application works for you, as I mostly work with/on Linux. It has been tested on Windows 8.1, and should in theory work on at least Windows 7 or later, but it might as well be the case that I messed up the deployment and it just crashes on your computer. Please report back in that case.

    For Linux, there are build instructions in the repository (no pre-made packages or appimages for common distros so far, sorry). In theory, those instructions should also work for MacOS, so that is not tested.

  • Translators

    @jaquobus Awesome!

    I'll check it out when I get home tonight (on my macbook now). You could probably make a dmg for OS X pretty easily too since it's QT based.

  • Couple of (probably) simple-to-fix things after a few minutes of poking:

    • Items in list are text only and searching in a pile of text is relatively slow. Having thumbnails there (like in official app) helps A LOT if you're trying to quickly find a particular one.
    • Cover sizes are somewhat random in the app. Small and big thumbnails in the metadata are differentiated by name. (something like v.thumbnail = v.attachments.FirstOrDefault(a => a.filename.Contains(App.LargeCovers ? "cover" : "thumbnail")); returns the right one (except O;9 vol2, that one's broken))
    • Loading indicator stays forever on non-existing cover images.
    • You get member-only recent parts parts even when not logged in and clicking it lands you on an empty reader. Also initially loaded list is too small, getting like 20 shouldn't be a problem at all. Edit: "Fetch more" doesn't even work and the way you do it you'll get some race conditions
    • Going [Recent parts -> some part -> back] lands you on the volume's page which is a bit weird (and not useful at all because you probably wanted to just read the last part)
    • Consider adding an obvious action on double click in series/recent parts list.
    • Page flipping in a double-page book view is a bit... unusual. I expected it to flip two pages forward but it flips only one. Apparently web reader is the same, but at least it has animation so you can see what goes where.

  • Premium Member

    @_08 Thanks for the feedback, I think most of those should be easily fixable (or an option, like how many pages to progress on two page view) once I have some time to work on it.

    Out of curiosity, did you use the Windows binary or build it from source?

  • @jaquobus Binaries on Win7.
    Sometimes on startup process takes ~5M of RAM, does seemingly nothing for a few minutes and starts normally afterwards.
    Some more issues:

    • /updateReadCompletion is posted even if you aren't logged in
    • One of the most frequent actions during reading would be page flipping so you'd want to make that one to be comfortable to use. Right now it can only be done with small on-screen buttons and left/right arrows (and latter doesn't even work at first). At the very least you should add other obvious keys like up, down, pgUp, pgDn, space and that leads to another bug...
    • Go to serie->volume->part, hit space repeatedly. Among other things, computational complexity seems to rise each time.
    • Navigating between parts in the reader can also take you to an unavailable part.
    • Wide images get cropped (most notably in Ragnarok Part1 and Rokujouma V5P3).

  • Premium Member

    @_08 Thanks again for the valuable bug reports/feature requests.

    By the way, I've enabled BitBucket's issue tracker feature (https://bitbucket.org/fkosmale/jnovel/issues), so anyone who stumbles upon a bug, please use that one in the future. It allows anonymous reports, no need for anyone to create yet another account.

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