Thursday, 2 September 2010

digital delights

I've had a dedicated e-reader for a few months now, and I love it. (It's not a Kindle or a Sony, rather, it's another brand, which Waterstones used to sell, but doesn't seem to any more.) It's fantastic to have a ton of books at my fingertips, all in something lighter than your average magazine, let alone paperback.

For most of those months I've been meaning to write up a proper review, and link in a bunch of the conversations about ebooks and pbooks, and DRM and format wars and ... I'm never actually going to have the time to do that, so instead you get this set of scrapbook notes, if for no other reason than to clear the decks so I won't feel constrained if something else comes up in the future on a related topic.

- I think I spotted a couple of e-readers being used by students over the summer, and at least 1, and an ipad amongst the current cohort. Several smartphones being used as readers as well.

- I had a play with some of the ebook aps available for my smartphone, and no. Not unless I had absolutely no other choice of reading material. The screen's just too small for any sensible amount of text. (Clearly folks who use their smartphones as readers feel differently, and more power to them!)

- neat to read about ND doing ebook studies, although I read this and all I can think is 'surely that's a study into tablet computers, not ebooks?'

- I had a play with an ipad at the weekend, and, yes, it's pretty impressive, but my first impression was surprise at just how heavy it was, and maybe they had the contrast settings way up, but that's one bright backlit screen. It certainly seemed much closer to a laptop than an ebook reader to me.

- One of the things I love about my reader is the e-ink screen. I can read in bright sunlight, and I can read in low light without giving myself a headache from the screen light. I prefer it to reading on screen by some margin - enough that I've taken to pulling across pdfs and long reports that I need to read for work, just to break up my screen time.

- I really thought the 'flicker' of the e-ink refresh on a page turn would drive me nuts - that was one of my real concerns before I got the reader - but I've realsed recently that I just don't notice it at all, any more than I notice the 'break' in my reading when I turn the page of a pbook.

- It's not ebooks vs pbooks, it's ebooks AND pbooks, at least if you're a word addict like I am.

* Photo by schmidjon, used under Creative Commons, with thanks.


Lexi said...

Thanks for the review! I'm really curious about these!

Miss Alice said...

Next time we get together you'll have to have a play - I'll almost certainly have it with me!