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'Bart'

Can You Buy Ebook Readers In the Shops

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Is there anywhere you can walk into a shop and play with a Kindle or such like (something with eInk, not a slate PC or iPad).

Do Waterstones have them? They seem to be pushing eBooks a lot these days.

How about PC world or one of the big electrical firms? Or John Lewis?

Anyone seen them in the shops?

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seen a couple of waterstones with them in. I wasnt too impressed. However the book reader on the android phones looks ace...

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seen a couple of waterstones with them in.

Was that in London or in a smaller town? We have a pretty big Waterstones in Sheffield but size is relative.

I wasnt too impressed. However the book reader on the android phones looks ace...

I know someone with a HTC Desire. I'll have to see if he'll let me prise it from his hands for 5 minutes (I'm sure he'd sleep with the damn thing if it didn't need recharging).

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Not sure but as an ebook reader for the past 10 years (using PDA's, pocket PC's, windows smartphones and the like) I can tell you they're very much an oddity at the moment. Using my aforementioned machines I had full colour books, have about 60 odd Star Trek books on my phone constantly and have read more ebooks than I have physical ones.

These recent ebook readers have the A4/5 form factor which is good and better than my phone screen but they also look to be greyscale or b/w and are bulky to carry. Also if you drop it will it break? My phone has silicone round it (not a iPhone 4 I might add) and will bounce to a degree.

It also occurred to me it's size makes it easier to steal when using it in public.

And there's no web browser on it so no sly tommy-tanks in the bog.

Each to his own of course - let us know what you find when you get your hands on one. I've never used a Kindle or the Sony one so am purely supposing what might be.

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Each to his own of course - let us know what you find when you get your hands on one. I've never used a Kindle or the Sony one so am purely supposing what might be.

It's more of a work thing to be honest. I'm involved in a small way in the production of PDF eBooks which are due to be converted to ePUB format in China (there's a lot of Greek, Hebrew and Arabic text involved which would make it a pain to do it myself).

I could then (presumably) convert these ePUBs to other formats using Calibre.

It occurred to me that I really ought to have some kind of eBook reader in order to view and test them.

The eInk system used by the Kindle is supposed to be more restful on the eyes, but I've never seen one in action, so I can't comment. It's definitely just mono at the moment.

I probably should look at the iPad as well.

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Almost all Waterstones should (or certainly did) hold sony e-reader thing. Bought one a while back and don't really like it. Ipad type device is going to be the future, I think. Paper books and e-readers. I reckon, will hang around in some form until technology arrives that allows them to be folded up.

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I've seen the Sony effort in John Lewis and Costco fwiw and would expect to take one home from there.

Might be worth taking a trip to John Lewis.

Actual supplies of the Kindle seem to be tightly controlled by Amazon, so unless my local Waterstones has one, I'm snookered.

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ipad type device is going to be the future, I think.

You may be right there. The screen may (in theory, as I've no basis for comparison) not be as good as an eInk screen, but the sheer force of the iPad sales blitzkrieg may see it as the default eBook reader.

Personally I'm a bit of a Luddite in this area. I like paper books. But at least with eBooks you can zoom in the text. Much better for my knackered eyes.

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The eInk system used by the Kindle is supposed to be more restful on the eyes, but I've never seen one in action, so I can't comment. It's definitely just mono at the moment.

I probably should look at the iPad as well.

The Kindle App for the iPad and other Kindle compatible devices supports colour...

http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html/ref=kcp_ipad_mkt_lnd?docId=1000490441

'Amazon Shows Off Kindle for iPad':

http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2010/03/amazon-shows-off-kindle-for-ipad/

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The eInk system used by the Kindle is supposed to be more restful on the eyes, but I've never seen one in action, so I can't comment. It's definitely just mono at the moment.

It is. Easy on the eyes even in bright sunlight, and incredibly easy on the batteries. I want a pad-size full-functioning 'puter with e-ink screen, but noone seems to have the imagination to produce a 'puter whose screen won't make a good games or video platform :-(

FWIW, the only one I've used is the bebook, but I'm sure my comments apply equally to others.

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You may be right there. The screen may (in theory, as I've no basis for comparison) not be as good as an eInk screen, but the sheer force of the iPad sales blitzkrieg may see it as the default eBook reader.

Personally I'm a bit of a Luddite in this area. I like paper books. But at least with eBooks you can zoom in the text. Much better for my knackered eyes.

If you haven't already, you could always try the Large Print section of your library. A lot of bestsellers come out in LP. They can be a mite heavy, though.

IMO people who really like reading will usually prefer paper books, at least for the foreseeable. People who like reading usually also like browsing, whether in bookshops, libraries, 2nd hand bookshops or charity shops. You can't browse with an e, not the same. And there's the added bonus of finding something interesting for free or for peanuts.

I tend to think that a fair percentage of the people who will go for e-readers will be more attracted by the shiny-gadget element than anything else.

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e ink is definitely the best for reading books imo, I've got a Kindle and an iPad and the kindle is way easier on the eyes (and way lighter).

the ipad feels a bit bulky for reading in bed and a bit over the top to be casually reading on the bus (as well as being a bit of an invite to be mugged)

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Guest X-QUORK

Problem with those Kindles is they don't fall open on the naughty pages.

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It's more of a work thing to be honest. I'm involved in a small way in the production of PDF eBooks which are due to be converted to ePUB format in China (there's a lot of Greek, Hebrew and Arabic text involved which would make it a pain to do it myself).

I could then (presumably) convert these ePUBs to other formats using Calibre.

It occurred to me that I really ought to have some kind of eBook reader in order to view and test them.

The results may well vary from reader device to reader device, since they all have their own software. Same goes for desktop readers; Stanza desktop is completely different to the epub Firefox addon.

If you're targeting Kindle then grab Amazon's Kindle Previewer (it's an emulator, different from the more general-purpose PC version of the reader)

http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1000234621

I was going to buy a kindle but with the above emulator I don't think I need to. (Note: kindle does not support the epub format).

Epub is more problematic since there's no "gold standard" device.

I had a quick look at Calibre, it wasn't as straightforward as I hoped (things that looked clean in Kindle format, looked awful in epub -- problems in the source files were "coped with" by Kindle, but were stored in the Kindle file and passed on through Calibre into the converted output files).

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MO people who really like reading will usually prefer paper books, at least for the foreseeable.

I have a friend who is a big, big reader. Whenever I even mention eBooks she punches me. I mentioned them on the phone last night and so I'm due a slap the next time we meet.

e ink is definitely the best for reading books imo, I've got a Kindle and an iPad and the kindle is way easier on the eyes (and way lighter).

Have you read any books with greyscale images? How have they looked with the eInk system?

Problem with those Kindles is they don't fall open on the naughty pages.

On the plus side, the pages don't stick together. ;)

If you're targeting Kindle then grab Amazon's Kindle Previewer (it's an emulator, different from the more general-purpose PC version of the reader)

http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1000234621

Many thanks for that link.

mr_magoo_copy.gif

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The results may well vary from reader device to reader device, since they all have their own software.

I've downloaded a large selection of ePUBs from a source young Chesterton pointed me towards and the quality seems to be variable.

Strange symbols instead of en-dashes, random numbers (could be stray page numbes) and odd line breaks spoil the reading experience in some of them.

In others, changing the font size messes up the line spacing.

Most are fine, but I'm surprised at the quality of the one's that aren't.

They may be poor conversions though. The source is not exactly "legit". It's a bit like buying unreleased films off a market stall.

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Real books require neither batteries, nor anti-virus subscription! :blink:

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Real books require neither batteries, nor anti-virus subscription! :blink:

You have anti-virus? :blink:

"Real" books are great if you have the luxury of space to keep them. Unfortunately, not all of us are that rich.

But given the weight, they're no substitute for an e-reader when traveling.

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The way I see it, the reason to get an e-reader is for eink. If you can handle reading while staring into a bright light, use a phone or laptop.

Phone - too small screen. Laptop - much heavier to lug around, and bad habit of getting warm. Both - very poor battery life relative to e-reader, and much harder to read in outdoor light (particularly sunlight).

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I've downloaded a large selection of ePUBs from a source young Chesterton pointed me towards and the quality seems to be variable.

Strange symbols instead of en-dashes, random numbers (could be stray page numbes) and odd line breaks spoil the reading experience in some of them.

In others, changing the font size messes up the line spacing.

Most are fine, but I'm surprised at the quality of the one's that aren't.

They may be poor conversions though. The source is not exactly "legit". It's a bit like buying unreleased films off a market stall.

Epubs are basically zipped HTML; on Windows if you rename from .epub to .zip, you can unzip them and see the HTML contents. If the HTML has dodgy line breaks or relies on specific character sets, the epub will have the same problem ... it sounds like the low quality ones you downloaded, were created by someone who just wanted to get it done.

If you really want nitty-gritty then you might want to look at this:

http://www.thebookdesigner.com/2010/07/liz-castro-epub-straight-to-the-point/

haven't bought it myself though so can't really recommend it as such. Maybe when I have to do a book layout with images rather than just straight text, I'll take a look at it.

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Yes, for comfort I'd choose real ink but e-ink is perfectly good - if they can make the page a little whiter it'd be pretty much there. I'd never read a book on a traditional computer screen.

Neither have I. Well bits&pieces, but not an entire book.

But I've written one. And it'd be great to have an e-ink screen for next time.

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  • 142 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
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      • up 5%



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