QuestionDo you use a portable ebook reader?
      – BorgClown, 2008-09-12 at 04:18:56   (32 comments)

On 2008-09-12 at 04:21:15, BorgClown wrote...
QReader (Free) - For Nokia Series 60 phones Plucker (Free) - For Palm One and Mobile Windows 5+ PDAs uBook (Pay) - For Windows Mobile 5+
On 2008-09-12 at 08:24:25, Lee J Haywood wrote...
I'd love to have one, but commercial products like Kindle are way too expensive. I wrote a script to format text in narrow columns so that I can read them on my camera, but cannot figure out how to get it to display an image it hasn't taken itself. My mobile 'phone only shows the first 8 words from a <tt>.txt file - about as useless as you can get - doesn't show local HTML files and I'd have to resort to a Java program to read text, so haven't bothered.
On 2008-09-12 at 15:34:01, BorgClown wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: There are several free TXT readers for cell phones, I can't recall the names since I stuck with QReader, but depending on your phone you surely have more choices.
On 2008-09-12 at 15:43:41, Lee J Haywood wrote...
QReader is another one of those programs that is precompiled and available from lots of download sites - I'm not going to trust any of them. Google Code seems to think it's a part of FBReader, which has a home but is Unix/Linux only.
On 2008-09-12 at 15:49:33, Lee J Haywood wrote...
Bizarre, http://www.qreader.com/ points to a Google Pages site - albeit a 404 page. I guess it was written by an amateur... ah, I can see its old state at http://web.archive.org/web/*/http://www.qreader.com/
On 2008-09-12 at 16:31:49, BorgClown wrote...
Yes, it's old, but very feature complete. So far has worked well for me.
On 2008-09-12 at 16:32:31, BorgClown wrote...
But only reads plain text, not images or formatting.
On 2008-09-12 at 16:33:42, Lee J Haywood wrote...
My mobile is capable of displaying HTML pages and running JavaScript, it's ridiculous that it won't open local HTML files, and even more so that it won't handle a simple text file.
On 2008-09-12 at 16:36:57, BorgClown wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: Local files? Evil customer, consume more bandwidth!
On 2008-09-12 at 16:37:29, BorgClown wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: I'm sure it has the proper APIs, but it lacks the willingness of the manufacturer.
On 2008-09-12 at 16:50:44, BorgClown wrote...
Lotta portable ebook readers here: http://wiki.mobileread.com/wiki/E-book_software
On 2008-09-12 at 16:51:21, RudystillRules wrote...
I can't read an ebook. I just can't. It has to be on paper.
On 2008-09-12 at 16:52:44, Lee J Haywood wrote...
I wouldn't use one to read an actual book, unless I was desperate, but being able to read text files is useful. For example, if you get a big list of jokes from the Internet and want to read them whilst visiting your family.
On 2008-09-12 at 16:56:21, RudystillRules wrote...
My attention span for reading something on the internet is significantly lower than it is irl. Anything longer than 6 lines I usually skim.
On 2008-09-12 at 16:57:20, BorgClown wrote...
Reading on your cell phone works surprisingly well. It might have to do with it being designed for one-hand operation. And the battery life is much better than most portable devices thanks to the little screen.
On 2008-09-12 at 17:00:12, Lee J Haywood wrote...
I decline to own a printer, so being able to read even small amount of text on my camera or mobile is helpful.
On 2008-09-12 at 17:02:43, BorgClown wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: How do you fulfill your printing needs? I print less than five sheets a month, but I don't think I could get away without printing at all.
On 2008-09-12 at 17:04:55, Lee J Haywood wrote...
Printing needs? We're not talking biological drives here. (-: Ordinarily I'd use the laser printer at work if I really wanted something. Alternatively I can get my mother to print something - I had her scan/print a copy of a receipt a month or two ago.
On 2008-09-12 at 17:06:26, BorgClown wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: I don't understand why you refuse to own a printer then. I thought you were compulsively self-sufficient.
On 2008-09-12 at 17:08:10, Lee J Haywood wrote...
I've wasted money on dot matrix printers in the past, and hardly ever touched them. I always wanted a laser printer, but once you have access to one at work it's not really necessary to own one yourself even once you can afford it - they just take up space. Lots of people like ink jet printers, but I don't think they're worth having and they're a rip off as well.
On 2008-09-12 at 17:21:53, BorgClown wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: I see. I don't like to print personal stuff on a company laser printer, I think their capacity encourages wasting. I've seen coworkers print books on those. An inkjet at home is great for printing the few things that won't do otherwise.
On 2008-09-12 at 17:24:11, Lee J Haywood wrote...
The fact that it's going to be personal stuff discourages me from printing too much - in fact, plenty of stuff sent to the printer goes into some mystical buffer and gets printed out a month later for everyone to see, or whatever, and you get bad experiences. So I don't print much at all when I do. I don't remember the last time I printed out any code - I just manage without these days.
On 2008-09-12 at 17:29:35, BorgClown wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: Oh yes, printing code is for noobs. That's what editors with collapsible widgets are for.
On 2008-09-12 at 17:30:27, BorgClown wrote...
Back in my noob coder years I printed a COBOL program. I thought it would never end.
On 2008-09-15 at 09:13:16, Matzevolt wrote...
I'm not an ebook person. I need to feel the paper, smell the ink and so on to get in the world of Asimov for instance. I tried to read Dante as an ebook, the Johnny Cash Biography and a few more, but I had to stop cause I lost the concentration. The only ebooky things I read are the comic books. And I only do that if I can't afford it the real way, which is most of the time.
On 2008-09-15 at 09:17:43, Lee J Haywood wrote...
That reminds me, this is the next big thing... http://www.plasticlogic.com/ (5 min 55 sec)
On 2008-09-15 at 09:39:08, Korinthian wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: That's pretty awesome. It's about time we moved away from paper. But that won't really happen until we have better batteries anyways.
On 2008-09-15 at 09:41:13, TheLadiesMan wrote...
i'm all for moving away from paper.
On 2008-09-17 at 01:41:27, BorgClown wrote...
@Korinthian: Screens take up a good chunk of the battery power. Take out the fast refresh, colors and backlight, and you'll get a better battery life than most cell phones.
On 2008-09-17 at 02:25:16, Baslisks wrote...
Yeah E-paper is a different material then your standard lcd screen. looks similar to an actual sheet of paper.
On 2008-09-17 at 02:27:48, BorgClown wrote...
And true e-paper doesn't need power to remain stable, unlike current LCD screens.
On 2008-09-17 at 02:31:12, BorgClown wrote...
Lasy time I read about true e-paper, it was two thin plastic sheets with an oily solution inside, and magnetic particles in suspension. It was like a high-tech etch-a-sketch. IIRC, color e-paper was done with three spheric particles inside a bubble, each with one hemisphere colored and misaligned magnetic poles. A nightmare to get right.