[WNYLUG-Users] Linux based EBook Reader

Joe josephj at main.nc.us
Tue Jul 12 05:07:24 EDT 2011

On 07/11/2011 06:54 PM, SilverBear wrote:
> Hi, Joe.
> I'm seriously "into" e-readers. Whatever you pat for one --it's worth it, IF you do the research and get the quality and the features you want for your circumstances.
> My initial impressions:
> 1]Almost all of "these things" are either Linux or Android based. If they're NOT, then automatically DITCH IT as serious contender for your purchase.  So. . .No big deal, unless you find it's not genuine FLOSS and you want to write an app for it. I'm a FLOSS fanatic, and I'm advising that in practical terms, this is not so much of an issue as I judge it to be in computer OS choices.
> 2] 6" screen is OK --IMO you don't want to go smaller, unless you're a spy or something!  With a 6" 800x600px e-ink screen, you'll seem to be reading a run-of-the-mill paperback novel. Except, with an e-reader, you can "adjust the font size to please your eyes." I LOVE this feature!
> 3] Text format readability only "EPUB, PDF" is pretty poor.  But using the excellent Calibre e-book management utility (Linux) you can probably convert ebooks from any of the many other formats to epub.  IMO, epub is the beat "all around" ebook format unless you have a book with a lot of tables and/or illustrations.
> 4] these specs:
> a] "Internal Memory: 2GB"   --very good!
> b] "Card Reader: Micro SD (up to 32GB)"  --excellent, but I'd prefer a standard SD card size. Still, no real problem here -- your cost for a micro-SD card and adapter for your standard-size SD card reader on your computer  is not  going "to keep Junior from being able to get a new pair of shoes for school in September."
> 5] I wouldn't count too heavily on its ability to play mp3 files to your satisfaction.  The sound quality on some of these e-readers is not even _close_ to a cheap mp3 player.  But I have no experience with this particular unit. So "Who knows?"
> 6] See this comparison table of all the well-known e-reaaders from The Site having to do with ebooks.
> http://wiki.mobileread.com/wiki/E-book_Reader_Matrix
> 7] Before you buy, join the forum:
> http://www.mobileread.com/forums/
> Tell them "SilverBear sent me." and they'll say "What? Who? --just enter a username and password with a valid email address and grow up! Namedropper. . ."
> Seriously, you ask any question about ereader hardware or software on this forum, and if you don't get a good answer . . . well, then nobody alive knows the answer.
> 8] IMO, there may be better choices available, depending on your budget and your ebook access circumstances. I'm not dissing this unit! I'm just saying that there are a lot of alternatives to look at before you choose.
> IMO, a decent e-reader is a "must have."
> Seriously, this is 21st Century _base-level_ tech!
> Seriously, I can fit more books on a 4GB SD card than I currently have in boxes in my attic weighing hundreds of pounds, getting moldy and providing a reason for the eventual executor of my estate to hate me on yet another count.
> -- John
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: josephj at main.nc.us
>> Sent: Mon, 11 Jul 2011 16:31:43 -0400
>> To: users at wnylug.org
>> Subject: [WNYLUG-Users] Linux based EBook Reader
>> Just got a Newegg add for a Pandigital Novel Personal EBook reader.
>> It's advertized as based on Linux, but the required OS info says Windows
>> 2000/XP/Vista/7, Mac OS X.
>> (I know that this refers to the support software, not the reader OS.)
>> Aside from the obvious irony, does it make any difference that it's
>> Linux based?
>> Does that mean that the reader is legally hackable - GPL, etc.?
>> Joe
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Thanks for all the good info. I'll definitely take a look at those 
links. I used to read a ton of books, but now I spend so much time 
looking at things online that when I'm done, I don't want to see another 
"printed" word for awhile.

I'm not ready to buy one (any brand) yet, but I see writing and editing 
in my future and even sooner in my partner's future, so I'm starting to 
learn about them. It looks like printed books will have a very small 
market share in the near future.

It just seems like every device or program I get would work better for 
me if I could just tweak it a bit here and there and ....
So it's nice to know that it might be possible.

For example, my (really old) cell phone (LG vx8300 - barely 3G) works 
great, but it would be so much better if I could add a keyboard shortcut 
or two, fix the brain dead way it presents messages about missed calls 
and voice mail in the middle of things, and display the current time for 
reference while its telling you when a call came in. Basically all gui 
stuff leaving the core functionality - the rocket science stuff alone. 
This is just an example. I don't really want anyone to research it, etc..

Although I'm certainly not a technical hot shot, maybe there's a niche 
where I could combine my technical expertise with my editing ability 
into something more valuable and marketable than just editing. (I'm not 
really into website design or desktop publishing and I'm not familiar 
with the related tools and languages except for a bit of HTML.)


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