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Old 14-07-2014, 16:58   #31
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

"As for cruiser's book exchanges, I will never enjoy Danielle Steele, Harlequin Romances and the like (apparently 99.999999999999999% of all books being read out here), and even for those (very) rare books in my reading range that might show up, I got tired of having the bug-infested, rotting and stinking things on the boat." Colemj

So, Mark,
What are you telling us about the majority of "cruisers." I'm very shocked and my weltanschuuang will be forever changed. I always thought "cruisers" were highly intelligent, sensitive souls that lived a life of physical and spiritual purity. So much for belief in the "tooth fairy."
Good luck, good sailing and may your life be both bug free and immersed in Nietzsche. Captain Rognvald--both temporarily enlightened and contrite.
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Old 14-07-2014, 17:09   #32
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

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Originally Posted by rognvald View Post
So, Mark,
What are you telling us about the majority of "cruisers."
From the condition of the books, I would say that the majority of cruisers have very leaky boats and a serious mildew problem.

Might be why they don't have Kindles?

Mark
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Old 14-07-2014, 19:18   #33
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

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Originally Posted by colemj View Post
That's funny - the only two non-technical, non-equipment manual books I have on board right now are Brian Greene (well, I guess his stuff could be considered technical and equipment manuals of sorts).

I have them on Kindle, but I'm too dumb to read straight through them without flipping back all the time and looking at diagrams and rereading sections.

I'm OK with quantum mechanic ebooks, but the string theory math and concepts just tangle my brain and require paper books.

Mark
Quantum physics is best served as a fine meal, in several courses. I love math, but despite my ability to digest calculus, I agree it is less of a mental tangle to be able to flip back and forth through the book.

WHO reads quantum physics cover to cover???? Seriously?! I want to meet that person....

Another book you won't find at the book exchange (I have the same difficulty)...if you haven't already read it: Chad Orzel, "How to Teach Physics to Your Dog" - it had me laughing out loud.
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Old 15-07-2014, 06:36   #34
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

The ironic thing is, once you grasp the nature of quantum physics, you'll immediately understand why and how you can be on any page and every page all at the same time. And how turning the Kindle OFF simple ensures that it is always going to be on the right page when it is turned on. An e-ink version of Schrodinger's Cat.

I think a lot of the shortcomings of Kindle come back to immature mass-market oriented product. You can't display two pages, or two ebooks, at once on one device. You can't even display two pages of the same book on two devices, the DRM still locks you into one display at a time.

But in the 25(?) year old PDF format you can do all of that. Hmmm.

And you can't scroll through Kindle-ware partly because the whole OS is oriented to slow virtual page flipping. Which is fine on slow e-ink displays. But again, you can literally scroll down a PDF file at light speed, as long as the hardware is up to it. Which just means a commodity-grade CPU these days.

And some of the problems, like poor indexing or poor placement of illustrations, are problems that have been a hallmark of cheap publishing houses forever, the same as they were in the paper days. If anyone remembers Ventura (the software) it was hailed as the way to get INDEXES! built quickly and reasonably. Even MS Word can do indexing...if the folks using it bother.

But the driving force behind ebooks (and Mr. Bezos' enterprises) is cheap mass market. And that's never been a good place for reference books, in any media.

I expect that Amazon will get a rude surprise as the inevitable happens. When it comes to computers and software, if you don't give people what they want, and you make it hard for them to use your product, someone always hacks it, sooner or later. Somewhere on the dark side there's probably already software that will strip away Kindle DRM and allow users to put their ebooks into PDF and other formats, where they can be read with more control. And once people do that, once they transform their ebooks into DRM-free format....bye bye birdy.

It will happen, no DRM, no encryption, is bullet-proof.
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Old 15-07-2014, 06:53   #35
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Somewhere on the dark side there's probably already software that will strip away Kindle DRM and allow users to put their ebooks into PDF and other formats, where they can be read with more control. And once people do that, once they transform their ebooks into DRM-free format....bye bye birdy.
This software has been available for many years. It is even offered as a plugin for Calibre.

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Old 15-07-2014, 08:43   #36
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

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Howdy Folks,

First let me start by saying my goal here isn't to discuss the merits of e-readers in general, I know this has been covered many times. For my part I love my kindle and the fact that with it I can take 100s of books with me with minimal weight and space requirements. E-ink readers are also super easy to read in direct sunlight and anything with an LED backlight is great in low light, so I'm convinced of the merits for basic text, and to me for novels it's a no brainer.

That being said, in my reading I've found that reference material doesn't always translate well to a simple E-reader. For instance, books like "The Voyagers Handbook", "Seaworthy Offshore Sailboat" or "The Underwater Photographer" are all excellent books IMHO but due to their content tables, charts, and diagrams are hard for me to read electronically. The electronic format also makes it harder to flip back and forth between specific pages/illustrations to help cement a concept in my mind.

So I bring this up because I'm curious what others do here. There have been several reference books that after buying electronic copies, I've wished I opted for physical books. At the same time, I recognize the fact that I probably don't want to be hauling several hundred pounds of books around with us on the boat. For instance, I'm wanting to pick up a copy of the Pardey's "Storm Tactics" book and am torn between the cheaper and space saving electronic version vs having a physical copy I can easily flip through anytime.

-EB
Ereaders are great for novels but useless for formatted text like tables. Ereaders are also next to useless with images.

We stick to PDFs in a folder structure broadly following anep-77. (A boring ship information standard)

We also have a ships manual that we constantly update specific to our vessel. We use Latex and a Tufte book template and create all our own vector graphic schematics. Very simple to make updates or additions.

You can use caliber to reformat but its very time consuming.

Sent from my GT-I9300 using Cruisers Sailing Forum mobile app
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Old 15-07-2014, 09:11   #37
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

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Originally Posted by Mycroft View Post
rognvald, you either aren't a liveaboard or you have a storage facility of some kind.

If it wasn't for the Kindle, I couldn't live on a sailboat. I refuse to pay to store stuff and I need books.
Back at the end of the last century, I though seriously about getting a trawler. There were many reasons to end the idea but one big issue was books. What the heck would I do with my books? Now, I am afraid I would sell the library and just buy new books for the Kindle.

I find the Kindle Fire easier to read than may physical books and of course I can store a huge library on the Kindle. There are some books I want physical copies, certain navigation books, engine manuals, cook books, etc but so many books can be on an eBook without an issue.

Now, I can read my books on my phone or Kindle and I suppose the computer I wanted or needed too. Just more flexibility with a Kindle. Not to mention the ease of getting a book NOW as long as you have Internet connectivity.

Later,
Dan
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Old 15-07-2014, 09:18   #38
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

We read either paper or pdf files from a tablet.

I got shocked by how well some tablet apps manage pdf files. I hated pdf to read on our PCs; now I love reading pdf books off the tablet.

b.
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Old 15-07-2014, 09:22   #39
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

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Originally Posted by leftbrainstuff View Post
Ereaders are great for novels but useless for formatted text like tables. Ereaders are also next to useless with images.
I think this depends on how well the book has been converted to an eBook. A properly formatted ebook table is far easier to me to read than a physical book. I have been using Beebe tables in Voyaging Under Power which are easy to magnify on my Kindle Fire to see the numbers. If it was a physical book I suspect I would have to use a magnifying glass and a ruler. One can use the edges of the Kindle as a ruler. Photos and images are easily magnified if the book is properly done.

All/Most of the PDFs I have on the Kindle are just as functional as on a PC. I have subscribed to one magazine that I get on the Kindle that is just as easy to read as a physical magazine. Frankly it is easier, since I can take my Kindle on a trip and still have the magazine and the newspaper I subscribe too. Nor do I have to put a hold on the newspaper when out of town. I wish ALL of my magazines would arrive on the Kindle. I have a stack of magazines that do not get read now simply because the Kindle is easier to read.

I have seen some really piss pour conversions to ebook that is for sure, but that will get better over time.

Later,
Dan
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Old 15-07-2014, 09:44   #40
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

"I have subscribed to one magazine that I get on the Kindle that is just as easy to read as a physical magazine. "
Ebooks are like a bucket of water. The shape of the water, varies with the bucket.

So magazines are all well and good, except when the usual oh-so-mod design staff have used tiny gray type or pulled some other stylish stunt making it impossible to read those pages on any reader that is less than a good 12" diagonal. Which sort of kills the purpose of most pocket-sized readers. Catch-22.

But there's nothing the reader software can do, that's going to fix that.
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Old 15-07-2014, 10:06   #41
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

Mark-
Calibre's DeDRM plug-in is probably too complicated for many users, and certainly isn't a panacea. "The DeDRM plugin can remove DRM from Kindle eBooks (but not rented Kindle ebooks, books download to a Kindle Fire or Fire HD, Kindle for Android, Kindle for iOS or the Windows 8 AppStore Kindle App), Barnes & Noble ePub ebooks, any ebooks using Adobe Digital Editions DRM "

So apparently it works for some of the older (cruder encryption?) Kindles, but you'd have to send everything to an old Kindle and then suck it back up into Calibre in order to accomplish anything. Which comes back to, arguably too complicated for most users.

I have no doubt that will change.

PS-
The author's link to the latest deDRM tools? Leads you into installing the infamous Conduit "search enhancer" aka malware that hijacks browser searches, and is likely to send most folks out for a new computer. Caveat emptor.
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Old 15-07-2014, 10:31   #42
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

I can't imagine how it is complicated - one simply places the plugin into the Calibre plugin folder and books are de-DRM'd automatically when you add them to your Calibre library. It must be the most simplest computer operation available today.

It works for all Kindle books - they all use the same .azw format when you buy them from Amazon. It doesn't seem to work on books downloaded directly to some of the devices. Instead, just download the book directly to your computer and drop it in Calibre. I just did this 5 minutes ago (gonna learn how to teach a dog quantum physics now).

If you are loaning someone one of your books, or borrowing one of theirs, export the file to your computer and import it into Calibre.

For those other formats, there are different Calibre plugins in the tools.

I just went to the author's website, downloaded the latest tools and saw nothing about any Conduit malware stuff.

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Old 15-07-2014, 10:58   #43
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

Dunno. Followed the link from his blog, and the installation includes a large pop-up that explains how you're agreeing to install the Conduit search enhancer. We're probably following different links.

Oh, wait, I see it. The file hosting site the author uses ( http://www.datafilehost.com/ ) has a pre-checked option to use their download manager, which in turn is what loads the malware--by default if you just follow along their download.

But on the larger topic, all the q&d self-publishing makes it possible for anyone to get published these days for way less than what a vanity press used to cost. And sadly much harder for anyone to make a living at writing, although some folks still do very well at it.

Of course that's not new. Something like 1957(?) someone at a writers' conference asked a young L. Ron Hubbard if you could make any money being a writer and he said no, if you wanted to make money, go start a religion.

Funny thing about that.(G)
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Old 25-07-2014, 12:04   #44
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

Being a wee bit of a reader, in that I generally read 4-5 books a week, I find the kindle app on my rooted/flashed noonhd is not too bad. The nookHD is less expensive then kindle fire and has better battery life and a better screen and expandable memory. It also can run various custom Android Roms, such as CyanogenMod with just a tiny bit O hacking. I also enjoy paper books too and receive a supply of books from a editor/book reviewer friend. Though I have found myself swiping across the paper to turn the page....DOH.

The real reason I love Kindle is Free Ebooks. I use Centsless Books | Free Kindle Books

Which shows me all the free ebooks on amazon at any time. A surprising amount too. It's updated hourly too. Best thing since sliced bread. Sure many are of dubious content but at least no trees were killed publishing them.
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Old 25-07-2014, 13:19   #45
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Re: Kindle vs Physical Books

My wife loves her Kindle. I like paper and don't care if it is impractical. I've always liked the library; the sounds, the smells, that it makes me slow down.

If I were cruising far, practicality would dictate both.
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