This is a simple procedure of dragging and dropping files to your origional Kindle Paperwhite while in USB mode. This is not a hack and does not require you to jailbreak your Kindle. That said, I take no responsibility for what may happen to your device in the unlikely event anything goes wrong.
Recently I stumbled on the amazing free and open source dyslexia typeface called ‘Open Dyslexic’. You can download it from OpenDyslexic.org.
I find reading numbers to be my main issue. Especially numbers I then have to input into a keypad. I’ve never been diagnosed with dyslexia of any kind but after a few minutes reading the Open Dyslexic font though, I felt a marked improvement with my ability to scan and follow text. I was reading faster and longer than ever before. I was genuinely impressed and really wanted to get the font onto my Kindle Paperwhite for further testing. After googling a few different Kindle hacking sites I found this simple system that requires no real hacking or jailbreaking of your device.
As far as I know this only works with the original Kindle Paperwhite running firmware 5.3.1 and above.
Adding custom fonts to your Kindle Paperwhite
1] Connect your Kindle Paperwhite to your computer via ‘USB Drive Mode’.
2] Create a file called USE_ALT_FONTS and drop it onto the Kindle’s root directory. (I created a text file and removed the .rtf from the end.)
3] Create a new folder on the Paperwhite called ‘fonts’.
4] Drop your TTF or OTF fonts into the folder. I used Open Dyslexic but any fonts will work if they are named in the standard format.
5] After you have added your fonts, disconnect your Kindle and then make sure you restart it from the menu.
Mine actually took a couple of restarts as I’d forgotten to eject the Kindle from my Mac but after restarting I opened a book, tapped the ‘Aa’ icon on the top left and there were my new fonts.
Reading Open Dyslexic on the Kindle is a revelation for me. I really can keep my concentration and read for much longer than with the standard fonts. I’m wondering why this kind of typeface design is not installed as standard on all e-readers.
I’m using firmwear 5.3.6 on my original Kindle Paperwhite and have no idea if this modification can be made to work on the new Kindle Paperwhite 2.
Mostly I’m hearing it doesn’t work on the newer Kindles although if you do get the ‘Please Repair’ message, all you need to do is remove the unspecified file and font folder and restart then the device. That should restore the kindle to normal.
I hear it also helps to install all typefaces available i.e.:
(.otf or .ttf will work)
Needless to say, before you attempt to tamper with any e-reader you should really back it up.
I’ll leave you with the first page of Hunter S. Thompson’s Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas so you can see what the font looks like in a block. I use tight line spacing and a larger spacing may help you even more. For the moment this really suits me.
Will the novelty wear off? Perhaps. I’m just amazed at how I’ve previously taken typefaces for granted. Now that I can see firsthand how a simple change in design can affect how I digest information, I’ll certainly be exploring some of the other reader friendly fonts out there.