View Full Version : Textbooks on the Kindle


Nate the great
12-06-2007, 04:55 PM
Two textbooks I need for next semester are available on the Kindle.

Foundations of 3d Graphics Programming: Using Jogl And Java3d
Modern Multithreading: Implementing, Testing, And Debugging

Review
The sample for Modern Multithreading looks like it was properly converted. I'm definitely going to get it. I know the author (Professor Richard Carver), and have taken his class before, so I have a good idea how he wrote the textbook. I also read a couple reviews that made me question the utility of the hardcopy; it doesn't have a glossary or complete index.

I'm not so sure about the other one. It looks like it's a bad scan job. A significant number of letters are missing the thin parts. Plus I've heard scary things about the professor and I am unfamiliar with the topic.

Cost
The cost of the books is at or less than the hardcopy price online. But the actual price is higher; I don't know how to resell the ebooks, or the possible price. With the hardcopy I know that I can get half the retail price.

wallcraft
12-06-2007, 05:50 PM
The cost of the books is at or less than the hardcopy price online. But the actual price is higher; I don't know how to resell the ebooks, or the possible price. With the hardcopy I know that I can get half the retail price. I don't think you can resell AZW e-books. They are tied to an account, and the account is associated with (one or more) Kindle's. Amazon would have to allow the transfer of e-books between accounts before a "used" market could be established.

Nate the great
12-06-2007, 05:58 PM
I don't think you can resell AZW e-books. They are tied to an account, and the account is associated with (one or more) Kindle's. Amazon would have to allow the transfer of e-books between accounts before a "used" market could be established.

I have until May to figure that out. Worst comes to worst I will just strip the DRM and sell the HTML source file here.

EDIT: On second thought, I will not try to sell it here. How can the moderators tell the difference between an honest sale and a dishonest one? They can't. It would be best for all concerned if transactions of questionable legality were not done on this forum.

rflashman
12-06-2007, 09:05 PM
I have until May to figure that out. Worst comes to worst I will just strip the DRM and sell the HTML source file here.

That post can probably be used against you in a court of law. :knife:

ginolee
12-06-2007, 10:06 PM
I have until May to figure that out. Worst comes to worst I will just strip the DRM and sell the HTML source file here.

Dude, what you're suggesting is unethical. Stick to physical books until you get your act straightened out.

Gino.

Nate the great
12-06-2007, 10:15 PM
Dude, what you're suggesting is unethical. Stick to physical books until you get your act straightened out.

Gino.

How is it unethical? If I own a file like I own a book, then I can sell it. I'm not going to sell multiple copies, just the one. Then I would delete the copy I have.

I, for one, want to pin down what rights I have over my property. I think it's about time that this matter is settled.

HarryT
12-07-2007, 05:27 AM
I, for one, want to pin down what rights I have over my property. I think it's about time that this matter is settled.

I'm sure it'll tell you somewhere on the Kindle web site what the terms of the licence are under which you're buying the eBook. eBook sites generally have the "terms and conditions" somewhere.

ajju
12-07-2007, 06:58 AM
Harry: I am sure it says in the TOS that you can't sell it but it's time someone challenged it. If you pay for something you own it and should be allowed to sell it.

HarryT
12-07-2007, 07:37 AM
Harry: I am sure it says in the TOS that you can't sell it but it's time someone challenged it. If you pay for something you own it and should be allowed to sell it.

That probably depends where you live.

In the US I understand there is something called the "right of first sale" which I suppose may be relevent to this.

In the UK we have no such "right"; the only way to contest this would be to claim that it forms an unfair contract, or that Amazon made insufficient effort to make sure that you were aware of the condition before you bought the book.

As always, though, when you put things into the hands of lawyers you can bet that the only people who are going to come out of it better off are those lawyers :).

If you KNOW that you're buying a textbook that you're only going to need for a year, and it does have a reasonable resale value, perhaps you'd be better off simply looking for a 2nd hand paper copy?

rflashman
12-07-2007, 11:13 AM
How is it unethical?

Usually illegal acts are considered unethical. It is illegal in the United States to circumvent the DRM protection of a file.

HarryT
12-07-2007, 11:19 AM
We've had some people here, who claim to be knowledgeable about such matters, say that the actual act of removing DRM is not illegal under the DMCA; merely the creation or distribution of tools to do so.

I don't know who's right or wrong about that; as far as I know, this has not, as yet, been tested in a US court.

Barcey
12-07-2007, 11:25 AM
Usually illegal acts are considered unethical. It is illegal in the United States to circumvent the DRM protection of a file.

And by that definition it was unethical for Rosa Parks to refuse to give up her seat on the bus. Yes I know the two aren't comparable but I think it's a lot more complicated then legal vs illegal.

bwit
12-07-2007, 11:59 AM
Two textbooks I need for next semester are available on the Kindle.

I have purchased a couple of computer reference books for the Kindle and I've found that in most cases the figures and tables are so small they are unreadable. The Kindle really needs a zoom feature.

Bob

Nate the great
12-07-2007, 12:24 PM
Usually illegal acts are considered unethical. It is illegal in the United States to circumvent the DRM protection of a file.

I could list a number of questions that would poke a hole in your theory. But the main reason I disagree is that I think you have it backwards. Some actions have been made illegal because someone thought the action was unethical or immoral.

I didn't intend to spark this debate about reselling an ebook. I'm now glad that I did. If amazon is going to go after the textbook market, then they will have to do something about the resale market. I usually buy my textbooks online, and sell them back to the campus bookstore. If I am going to pay the same amount for a textbook on my Kindle, then I must insist on the ability to resell it at a later time. If I can't resell it, then it is worth much less than the hardcopy.

I don't think Amazon thought about the resale of textbooks, and that could be a major blunder on their part.

Alisa
12-07-2007, 01:10 PM
And by that definition it was unethical for Rosa Parks to refuse to give up her seat on the bus. Yes I know the two aren't comparable but I think it's a lot more complicated then legal vs illegal.

While I do separate legality and ethics, what Rosa Parks did wasn't illegal. She was sitting in the designated "colored" area in the back of the bus and was ordered to move for a white person to sit because the bus was full. There was no law supporting what the bus driver did.

JSWolf
12-07-2007, 01:14 PM
I have purchased a couple of computer reference books for the Kindle and I've found that in most cases the figures and tables are so small they are unreadable. The Kindle really needs a zoom feature.

Bob
Chances are that's the size of the images and in that case, zoom may not make them any easier to see as they'd get fuzzy when zooming in.

rflashman
12-07-2007, 02:29 PM
Chances are that's the size of the images and in that case, zoom may not make them any easier to see as they'd get fuzzy when zooming in.

I disagree, zoom works quite nicely on the Sony Reader (but not available for PDF files sadly) and I think many articles/newspapers/books would greatly benefit from being able to select an image/illustration and zoom it to screen size.

wallcraft
12-07-2007, 03:28 PM
I think many articles/newspapers/books would greatly benefit from being able to select an image/illustration and zoom it to screen size. This is yet anther option that is available in some versions of MobiPocket Reader, but not in the Java-based Reader (iLiad and Kindle).

bwit
12-07-2007, 05:07 PM
Chances are that's the size of the images and in that case, zoom may not make them any easier to see as they'd get fuzzy when zooming in.

I can't say what the resolution of the images in Kindle books are. My point was that in the paper version of the books the figures and tables are very readable, in the Kindle version they are not. Reference and textbooks tend to have a lot of figures and tables which makes them very hard to read on a Kindle.

Bob

JSWolf
12-07-2007, 05:10 PM
If the images are not good enough, why bother? Images are rather important for text books overall.

bwit
12-07-2007, 05:15 PM
If the images are not good enough, why bother? Images are rather important for text books overall.

Attached is an example of what I'm talking about. Trust me, the data in this table is no more readable in person than in this photo.

Bob