Discussion in 'Technologics' started by Saccaroa, Apr 4, 2012.
That's well researched - there's a reason why magazines and newspapers break text into columns.
So, got a Nexus 7, and have used it for reading roughly 2/3 of a book now. The software setup is exactly the same as I was using on the Transformer Infinity (and thanks qmanol for the FolderSync suggestion; that works absolutely perfectly, and basically turns my desktop Calibre library into a cloud library), so the only difference is the form factor and the screen.
The form factor of the N7 turns out to be great for reading. It's much more comfortable in the hand than the Transformer (obviously), and feels pretty comparable to a Kindle. It's actually almost exactly the same exterior dimensions as a Kindle Keyboard, except that it's all screen. Weight's a little bit more than a Kindle, but less than a Kindle Touch plus case, so anyone who found that carryable should find this the same. The bezels are borderline too thin for comfort (the Kindle Touch has noticeably wider bezels), but end up narrowly on the decent side of all right.
As for the screen, the resolution is pretty comparable to the Transformer Infinity, and obviously much sharper than a Kindle (even the Paperwhite, which looked disappointingly less improved than I would have hoped, when I saw it in a store). The N7's display is significantly dimmer than the Transformer's, though, and I was afraid that would be a problem when reading outdoors. But after trying it out, it turns out that the reduced brightness is offset by the part where the N7's display is oriented so that you can read it in portrait mode when wearing sunglasses, where the TFI's is designed for landscape mode and blacks out when held in portrait mode. So the brighter screen is better, but N7 screen plus sunglasses ends up working out perfectly well.
Upshot for me is that the N7 has vastly better software than the Kindles, and on the hardware side trades some battery life and a bit of weight for a display that I prefer to the Paperwhite's. It's my preferred e-reader, and I'd recommend it for that purpose even leaving aside the other things that it can do.
I got my wife a Paperwhite for Christmas. I'm not sure if she's going to go for it or not. She's looked at my Fire and said she could read a book on it, she thinks. She never liked the e-ink readers because of the black on gray. She said it was too dingy, like reading a book on really bad paper.
My friends are saying I should have just gotten a Nexus 7 for her. My problem is she would yell at me for spending that much money. I used a bunch of coupon codes, and points rewards to basically pay $60 for the Paperwhite without ads + a case for it + the stupid power connector. If I pay over $100 for a Christmas gift for her she gets mad.
I went to Best Buy the other day and was playing with one. I hope she likes it. She always complains that she has to use half her luggage space for books whenever we travel, so I think getting her an e-reader is a good choice.
as a guy who cant travel without a minimum of two, preferably four or more, books in my luggage an e-reader was one of the best purchases I ever made.
I will say after that on Kindle #4 I've gotten too paranoid to put it in luggage or a bag or something. I'm getting my first (appropriately sized) case this christmas but I picked one that's softish (for everyday bumps and drops around the house) instead of one that was 100% rigid which I'd want for stowing in bags or whatever.
E-readers are really the most wonderful thing that has happened to reading in years. It's funny too. I still have no problem buying physical books or physical magazines AND an e-version as well for some books. I will never abandon my e-reader OR my local used bookstore!
I've always been a book person but all things being equal I'd always take the a searchable, no-space-no-weight edition that's always to hand in my Tardis bookshelf. The remaining positives for books in a one-to-one comparison are basically stuff where the ebook interface is still a bit clunky or where the digitization falls down (indices, footnotes, etc.). Last scholarly work I read had endnotes instead of footnotes and there was no way to go back and forth to them. Would have been a slightly sub-par arrangement with a real book, involving an extra bookmark in the back, but on my kindle it just wasn't worth figuring out how to refer to them.)
That's the fault of whoever published it, because I've read plenty of ebooks (Terry Pratchett's Dodger being the most recent,) that handle footnotes just fine. There'll be a number link, which links to the footnote, and hitting the back arrow puts me back where I was.
Oh, they mostly work fine (and are as such handier than physical end-notes, although footnotes have always been my own preference.) In that case though there was really no workaround even. I thought about jailbreaking a copy of the .azw and opening it seperately to the footnotes section but I've never quite gotten around to setting up calibre to do that.
One of the few times I've had to check luggage was coming back from Hawaii. The way out was fine, because I'd only brought six books, but then while there, I bought another three. And so apparently that made the luggage too heavy.
My Kindle was originally supposed to be just for traveling, and I swore that I'd never get rid of my paper books. Oops.
Going to pull the trigger on a paperwhite tonight (190ish shipped to NZ compared to 285 in local shops! Wtf?!). Any particular reason not to? Does someone want to explain the relationship between Calibre and the Kindle? I have heard the name of this tool but I don't get the whyfors.
Calibre is what you use to get any book or document not sold in the Amazon store onto your Kindle.
And the Paperwhite is lovely - bought mine a few weeks ago.
It costs the equivalent of about $86US in Japan. If you're interested I could send you one.
Calibre is an amazing program which I use to organize my books on my PC and also to convert books to different formats and remove DRM. It's an amazing piece of software.
Canuck: A paperwhite without ads for $86us? I would kiss you for that!
How does one marry up buying books on amazon with managing them via calibre? And why does one need to manage stuff by calibre when the store and your bought library exists? Just a nub here.
I don't have one myself as I'm still happy with my prs 650 but I'm pretty sure the kindles in Japan are not ad supported.
If you want have calibre the you're not restricted to only buying from Amazon. You can buy any epub that you happen to see a great deal on and convert it to whatever format Kindle uses. You can also change the ebook formatting if there's something that really bothers you like annoyingly large margins.
Kindles don't support .epub files, probably the most common "independent" ebook standard; Calibre can convert them to .mobi, which they do support. I think you can also set it up to turn various newsfeeds and such into appropriately formatted ebook text and fire them to your machine, but I've never messed around with that - similarly it can de-drm your Kindle books if you're a bit concerned about them coming with a built in lock. (Having had a few kindles die on me I've sometimes thought - what if one time it died and I didn't want to get a new one? Then it'd be too late to unlock the books for other devices. Still hasn't gotten me to do it yet.)
Calibre is an iTunes-level flaming hunk of shit piece of software, but it's really the only game in town. I only use it begrudgingly for the occasional format conversion and then get everything not from Amazon onto my Kindle via email.
This is what Calibre's NYT feed looks like on a Kindle Paperwhite:
Eh, it's certainly feature bloated for the purposes of the average user, but it feels like an unkind comparison in that somebody wants/needs a lot of those features, and it's some dude rather than Apple.
I've never had a problem with Calibre. All I know is that it organizes my books well, it allows me to add meta data and covers and it allows me to read kindle books on my non-kindle reader. As far as that goes it's an awesome piece of software.
You don't actually need the kindle itself for the de-drming (or, in fact, Calibre). I just use the python script on this page (DeDRM for people who don't want to use calibre) from my Kindle folder on my PC, which is simple drag and drop and then you can go back to using the regular kindle app with it if you are so inclined. Also, most times when Kindles die they are still accessible as external HDs (at least that's been the case with the two I've killed), so that always provides a source for the base mobi.
I have to completely disagree, comparing it to Itunes is a disservice. It works well, has never taken up resources, and does all the things others have mentioned already, plus the plugins to do things like link to Goodreads are pretty nice.
Calibre is absolutely essential for using an old-school Kindle-style device, but if you're using a tablet (N7, iPad Mini, whatever), I've come to the realization that Calibre is useless.
The problem is that it stores its metadata not in the files themselves, but in an external Calibre-specific .db file. So what I was doing for a while was just putting my Calibre directory onto Dropbox, syncing that up to my tablets, and working with that. But if you do that, your metadata will always be terrible, because none of the changes you make in Calibre are actually persisted.
So I ended up "exporting" my library out of Calibre, putting that export into Dropbox, and now I use that directly. Metadata changes on any tablet affect the file itself, so are visible everywhere, so I don't need Calibre for metadata management (which is good, because it didn't work with that model anyway), and obviously syncing is taken care of through Dropbox/Foldersync, so I don't need Calibre for that. I do keep it around for de-DRMing, but as LK notes, you can do that without Calibre if you're so inclined.
Can anyone recommend a cover/stand for a paperwhite? I got my wife a sleeve with hers, but she likes the fact that I can turn the cover of my Fire into a little stand and set it on the table while I'm eating breakfast. She just found the setting to manually change the orientation and now she wants her paperwhite to stand up.
My paperwhite arrives soon, thanks for the help
Canuck! Anyone got any opinions on covers for the thing? No need for it to stand up!
Just thought I would drop back in and thank the brains trust for the paperwhite recommendation. It really is a lovely eReader and a real joy to use. Really pleased to have got this thing!
Now I just have to resist Steam-itis and loading it with hundreds of books I will never read (which will then sit there judging me) and I will be the human version of this ^_^
The beautiful thing about Kindle is loading it with samples, then just work through them and buy or delete as you go.
The worst thing about the Kindle is that I never get to the backlog of actual books people got me for Christmas because it's too easy just to start another e-book when you finish the one you're reading.
I had to read this three times to figure out what you were trying to say. "He doesn't read books, because... it's so easy to read books?" Finally, I realized that you were using "actual books" to mean "glued together printouts of books," and then I got it.
Yeah, I kept some paper books around after the ebook revolution hit me, because they didn't have e-book editions, and I wanted the option of reading them. I have read zero of them, in two and a half years. At this point, they're basically decoration.
This. So much this.
I've got a pile of hardcovers from as far back as the christmas of 2011 that I still haven't started because my Kindle is just so easy.
We had a problem over Christmas because I converted all my wishlist books from paper to e-books, and my family refused to buy them.
"If we buy you these, what are you going to open on Christmas?"
Opening presents is a big thing in my house. My niece wrapped individual candy bars for us to open. The digital revolution kind of screws with Christmas. Sure you can open a package with a gift card in it, but gift cards are considered crappy gifts, both to ask for and to give.
There are still some paper books I actually get, mainly hiking related books, because I consider taking my Kindle hiking to be a hazard.
Oh, and coffee table type books, those are still useful, but that kinda falls into the "books as decor" thing. Cookbooks also!
That reminds me, I still have 2 boxes of paperbacks to take to the second hand bookstore.
One of my favorite writers, the recently departed Mr. Bradbury, refused to permit his books to be digitized. I recently indulged myself in copies of everything I didn't already have that was available for a reasonable price (his first anthology and a special edition of Martian Chronicles were NOT reasonable). I also keep dead-tree editions around for times when the Kindle just won't do, such as on the beach.
The Kindle is great on the beach.
I worry about sand and sunscreen, which I apply by the gallon.
Put it in a plastic bag like Jeff Bezos does.
I use a Nook Simple Touch, and Calibre is kinda a necessity for management since the reader's firmware does little else but display text and connect to the B&N store. It also makes DRM'd public library books (which are 75% of my reading) a lot more bearable to deal with.
I understand why people say Calibre is horrible. It's unwieldy and monolithic and tries to do everything. The problem is it does do everything. It also does an impressive job of auto-converting RSS feeds to something lovely and navigable, as Lum demonstrated; mine's set up to churn out a daily newspaper from the BBC News site without me having to do a thing.
I've thought about rooting my Nook to be able to not be as dependent on Calibre, but that would take a serious hit on battery life (and the bare-bones nature of the Simple Touch is what attracted me in the first place). I'd love to have a Paperwhite but Amazon's persistent lack of epub support is a downer (and I don't want to have to worry about sketchy format conversion).
That's what SHE said.
Yeah, it's perfect. They sell transparent cases that amount to very heavy-duty plastic bags, but I just use a quart size zip lock-type bag and replace it with a new one when it develops a tear or is otherwise no longer suitable.
Anyone got any tips on pre-school ebooks that work well on kindle? Stuff I can read to the kids and enjoy?
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