Register Guidelines E-Books Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Go Back   MobileRead Forums > E-Book Readers > Which one should I buy?

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 07-16-2007, 06:41 PM   #1
|2eason
Connoisseur
|2eason is on a distinguished road
 
Posts: 61
Karma: 56
Join Date: Jul 2007
Device: Tatung Tablet
My Perfect E-Book Reader

I'm unimpressed by the current selection of ereaders out there at the moment, because most seem to be geared towards fiction readers. Whilst there's nothing wrong with that per say, I think there is (or would be) a much greater demand for eInk readers designed for academic use.
The reason behind this is down to just the sheer volume of literature your average university student has to trawl though to learn their particular field. Ebooks, I believe, can significantly improve the efficiency of the study process. So whilst your keen fiction reader may have a strong desire to read books in digital format, there is a clear need for more accessible digital media in academia (at least there would be, if such a need were demonstrated.. by aggressive marketing)

Currently, tablet PCs are being touted as the 'must have' learning aid. They're good, I've got one myself. There invaluable as a reference aid and for taking notes etc, but for hardcore study, they're useless. You just can't concentrate and absorb the information because of the eye fatigue they cause.

So, I think my perfect eInk device would be a cross between a tablet pc and an eInk device. So;

Hardware Specs
  • Screen: Minimum of 10" EInk.
  • Processor: Maximum of 500Mhz - It needn't be any bigger imo. Most current readers, except the Iliad, use the Samsung 200mHz chip. It's the same chip PVI supply in their dev kit. Surely that can be improved on?
  • RAM: 128MB? Whatever is needed for smooth operation
  • Flash Memory: Minimum of 1GB. 500 for the OS, the rest for 3rd party programs.
  • File storage: Removable solid state, with the ability to support the latest and largest disks.
  • Coms: Wifi g/n, 10/100 wired, usb. The important aspect of connectivity is in the software.
  • Human Interface: Stylus is a must for annotation and navigation.
  • Sound: No! None. If I want music I'll use an mp3 player. Save on the expense and weight by remove the sound circuitry completely.
  • Power: Obviously soft power, soft sleep/suspend, aggressive cpu throttling, intelligent hardware control. The works.

Software Specs:
  • OS: Linux, totally open source. Whoever makes this device should be able to concentrate on hardware and support. Since this is aimed primarily at academia, there should be a raft of comp-sci students willing to get their hands dirty with the software.
  • Reader software: Some default apps, but mostly 3rd party, with an easy install method.
  • Interface: Give the user what they're used to; Windows, icons, the works. A simplified/modified KDE or Gnome desktop is perfectly feasible with the hardware, imo.
  • Network connectivity: To be really useful, it should have the software required for exploring the network FS. Picture the scene; student walks into Uni library, takes a seat, connects to the libraries Wifi, searches for and find a book, studies for a hour or so and then walks out of library with the book still on their ereader. The ereader then naturally disconnects from the LAN and the DRM in the book activates. 2 weeks? use before the book needs to be returned or renewed else it deletes itself. Simple. With a system like that, University would buy up ereaders and offer them cheap to their students, the money they'd save on paper books would more than cover the costs.
  • Drivers: For usb hard drives etc. Sure, they require some power, but they are useful keeping personal libraries on.
Well, I could could go on. To sum up; the functionality of a simple PC, with the readability of EInk. All of this technology is readily available and I'm pretty sure it can be implemented on a low weight, long battery life basis. So why isn't it available? Am I the only one that wants something like this?
|2eason is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2007, 07:04 PM   #2
NatCh
Gizmologist
NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
NatCh's Avatar
 
Posts: 11,605
Karma: 926222
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Republic of Texas Embassy at Jackson, TN
Device: Nook STGR
Quote:
Originally Posted by |2eason View Post
Am I the only one that wants something like this?
Absolutely not! Although I'd point out that the device you're describing would be of even greater interest to professors than students -- for every paper a student writes in a class, the prof has to read 25 or 30. Then there's the research they do themselves, watching my wife work through the end of her PhD, I can assure you that student reading/workloads are nothing to professor reading/workloads!

You're also not considering other professions, lawyers, office workers ... the potential demand for a well executed device is even more staggering than you seem to think.

Two things I'd point out, though. I really think that a 12" screen is probably a better minimum size, and Letter/A4 would be ideal, since so much is formatted to that size.

The other thing is you mention universities saving money on books by switching to e-devices -- they wouldn't, since they don't generally pay for the books now, but the students could potentially save substantially ... if the system weren't set up specifically to milk them as much as possible.

I for one, have been on this bandwagon for some time. The Sony Reader is a great leisure device, but there is a massive market for a professional grade e-ink/e-paper device. As to why no one has jumped on it (except iRex, who look like they meant to jump, but seems to have missed), I couldn't guess. It's a mystery to me too.
NatCh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2007, 07:09 PM   #3
guguy
Groupie
guguy began at the beginning.
 
guguy's Avatar
 
Posts: 191
Karma: 15
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Clermont-Ferrand/Paris, France
Device: PRS-505
Good idea but :

Quote:
Flash Memory: Minimum of 1GB. 500 for the OS, the rest for 3rd party programs.
You must be kidding, 500Mb for the OS ????
You don't even need 64Mb!

Quote:
Coms: Wifi g/n, 10/100 wired, usb. The important aspect of connectivity is in the software.
A great thing would be to add 3G (europe) or EDGE (us), it is less
battery-consumming and you can download books just everywhere!

And bluetooth would be great instead of USB.
guguy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2007, 07:17 PM   #4
delphidb96
Wizard
delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.delphidb96 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 3,000
Karma: 300001
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Citrus Heights, California
Device: TWO Kindle 2s, one each Bookeen Cybook Gen3, Sony PRS-500, Axim X51V
Geez! Can you people *NOT* get it?!?

eInk doesn't have the response time to be useful as a main display for a full-blown computer! Yes - EVENTUALLY we will see eInk displays which update fast enough to catch and update the screen to keep up with keystrokes. But until that is the case, they are darned well *WORTHLESS* for anything other than *READING*! Which is why the current crop of ebook readers don't have tons of handwriting capture capability or on-screen, virtual keyboards.

So for the nonce, the next great device for portable note-taking/researching/computing will probably be ASUS' EEE PC. 7" screen unit will run $200 and 10" screen will run $300 - approximately. And we should all be able to get our hands on one come August.

Derek
delphidb96 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2007, 07:24 PM   #5
|2eason
Connoisseur
|2eason is on a distinguished road
 
Posts: 61
Karma: 56
Join Date: Jul 2007
Device: Tatung Tablet
Quote:
Originally Posted by guguy View Post
You must be kidding, 500Mb for the OS ????
You don't even need 64Mb!
A fully featured linux OS would easily require 500mb of Drive space. But, even a slimmed down version would find it useful for future expanibility.


Quote:
A great thing would be to add 3G (europe) or EDGE (us), it is less
battery-consuming and you can download books just everywhere!
And bluetooth would be great instead of USB.
3G and Edge require cash, lots of it in fact. Students can't afford expensive mobile network contracts. Business people, yes, but that's a different niche.
Bluetooth though, yes. Why not IR too, just for legacy compatibility. So long as you have an intelligent power management system that can totally power these things off to save battery power and they don't add too much weight, then there no downside.
|2eason is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2007, 07:29 PM   #6
|2eason
Connoisseur
|2eason is on a distinguished road
 
Posts: 61
Karma: 56
Join Date: Jul 2007
Device: Tatung Tablet
Quote:
Originally Posted by delphidb96 View Post
eInk doesn't have the response time to be useful as a main display for a full-blown computer!
Derek
I disagree. You just have to limit the on screen movement of windows and such. I'm not talking about full-blown multimedia here. Just the ability to have multiple windows, drag and drop( or rather click to cut/click to paste). All of the basic functions of an simple graphical desktop can be done without heavy on-screen action, imo.
|2eason is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2007, 07:37 PM   #7
JSWolf
Resident Curmudgeon
JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
JSWolf's Avatar
 
Posts: 38,474
Karma: 19300555
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Roslindale, Massachusetts
Device: Kobo Aura H2), Sony PRS-650, Sony PRS-T1, nook STR, iPad 1, iPhone 5
1gig ram for the OS and the data would be fine. It needs a larger then 10" screen (12" min) in order to handle US Letter size PDF. And the PDF display software should allow zoom if the reader wants so people with not so good eyesight can read the PDF just fine. It should support PDF, DE, LIT, KRF, MobiPocket, and eReader, RTF with full graphics support and bookmark support. and full HTML/XML.

16 shades would be enough for the diagrams/illustrations/pictures. I'd also like to have proper font support. Meaning you can install whatever fonts you want to use. I don't know which book format is best but I want it to come with software to allow me to make books and take advantage of the full format capabilities of whichever format I choose to output. I want a fast enough processor that will allow embedded fonts not to slow down page turns.

For extra storage, make it compatible with Compact Flash. The type that allows the hard drives. Forget SD and memory stick.

A keyboard on board like the Libre has with the ability to plug in an external keyboard.

Fully open so anyone can develop anything for the device with the ability to boot back to a working system if it bricks.

When it's plugged into the USB port, it should be another drive with the ability to have a hierarchical file system.

wfi with 802.11g would be fine. No need for wired.

A stylus to replace the mouse.

And an easily replaceable rechargeable battery so if we want we can carry around an extra battery.

Do without the mp3 playback. Won't ever use it or want to.

And very important.. buttons for page turns where we ACTUALLY PLACE OUR HANDS.
JSWolf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2007, 07:38 PM   #8
|2eason
Connoisseur
|2eason is on a distinguished road
 
Posts: 61
Karma: 56
Join Date: Jul 2007
Device: Tatung Tablet
Quote:
Originally Posted by NatCh View Post
Two things I'd point out, though. I really think that a 12" screen is probably a better minimum size, and Letter/A4 would be ideal, since so much is formatted to that size.
That would be perfect. My tablet is a 12" and it's just right for PDFs. But, I was trying to use current technology and afaik 10" Einks are the largest available.
Quote:
The other thing is you mention universities saving money on books by switching to e-devices -- they wouldn't, since they don't generally pay for the books now, but the students could potentially save substantially ... if the system weren't set up specifically to milk them as much as possible.
Well, I'd imagine it's country specific to a certain extent. Surely someone somewhere along the line pay for the books, whether it's the university, the government or the publisher through lost profits.

The rest of what you say, I totally agree with. I think there's a huge market for it, but none of the current crop of companies (sony, irex etc) seem to be geared up for it, or even considering it.

Last edited by |2eason; 07-16-2007 at 07:41 PM.
|2eason is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2007, 07:41 PM   #9
NatCh
Gizmologist
NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
NatCh's Avatar
 
Posts: 11,605
Karma: 926222
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Republic of Texas Embassy at Jackson, TN
Device: Nook STGR
I'm thinking somewhere in between, |2eason's and delphidb96's takes on a device.

Certainly e-ink (even Vizplex) isn't up to a full computer standard, but we're also not talking about a full up computer, per se.

I think that enough folks would find it more than acceptable for a lot of everyday tasks. Reading things other than books is a no-brainer, of course (e-mail, reports, legal briefs, journal articles, etc., etc.). I also think, based on what I've seen of the iLiad's 'drawing' functions, that note-taking would be acceptable to mosts, as would marking up reports or grading papers (again etc., etc.).

I don't think it's (quite) up to multiple windows and drag and drop ... I think the ghosting would be nasty, and the lag is still to great to be able to handle precise enough object manipulation, but that's my opinion. If somebody tried it and it worked well enough for enough folks, then I'd happily count my opinion proved incorrect.
NatCh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2007, 07:46 PM   #10
JSWolf
Resident Curmudgeon
JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.JSWolf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
JSWolf's Avatar
 
Posts: 38,474
Karma: 19300555
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Roslindale, Massachusetts
Device: Kobo Aura H2), Sony PRS-650, Sony PRS-T1, nook STR, iPad 1, iPhone 5
How about dual screens? an LCD and an e-ink so you can have your compuer functions on the LCD and the reading on the e-ink
JSWolf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2007, 07:53 PM   #11
NatCh
Gizmologist
NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.NatCh ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
NatCh's Avatar
 
Posts: 11,605
Karma: 926222
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Republic of Texas Embassy at Jackson, TN
Device: Nook STGR
I've never warmed up to the dual screen thing. I'm not saying it's bad, I'm just saying I don't care for it.
NatCh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2007, 07:57 PM   #12
|2eason
Connoisseur
|2eason is on a distinguished road
 
Posts: 61
Karma: 56
Join Date: Jul 2007
Device: Tatung Tablet
Quote:
Originally Posted by NatCh View Post
I don't think it's (quite) up to multiple windows and drag and drop ... I think the ghosting would be nasty, and the lag is still to great to be able to handle precise enough object manipulation, but that's my opinion.
I think it all depends on how you, or rather the software, deals with it. For instance;
Moving a window; Single click on the window header bar once, then slingle click on the desktop were you want it to be - One screen refresh required
Resizing a window; single click on the corner, single click on where you want it to be - one refresh
Drag and drop: As I said; single click to cut, single click to paste: one refresh.

You could even go further and just have immovable windows with a maximum of four, one in each screen segment. Even that would provide enough scope for file manipulation.

Ultimately, the important thing is to give the user access to large, remote libraries via the internet or LAN without the need for an intermediate PC or snickernet. If that can be done with an intuitive non-standard interface, then I'd be happy with that.
|2eason is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2007, 08:10 PM   #13
|2eason
Connoisseur
|2eason is on a distinguished road
 
Posts: 61
Karma: 56
Join Date: Jul 2007
Device: Tatung Tablet
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSWolf View Post
How about dual screens? an LCD and an e-ink so you can have your compuer functions on the LCD and the reading on the e-ink
You'd start running into weight issues then I think. LCDs are heavy as are the batteries to power them. Of course, I'd imagine in the not to distant future they'll invent an all-in-one, dual use panel that can switch between high speed refresh and bi-stable modes at the drop of a hat. That would be something.
|2eason is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2007, 10:42 AM   #14
yvanleterrible
When books can fly!
yvanleterrible ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.yvanleterrible ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.yvanleterrible ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.yvanleterrible ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.yvanleterrible ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.yvanleterrible ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.yvanleterrible ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.yvanleterrible ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.yvanleterrible ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.yvanleterrible ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.yvanleterrible ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
yvanleterrible's Avatar
 
Posts: 8,522
Karma: 3634956
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Que Nada
Device: Kobo Mini in my lunchbox.
Eink is in its infancy even if its technology is at a higher step than the first watch displays were from today's computer displays.
I think Sony was clever to find it its present function. It is a perfectly marketable iteration and there should it stay.

Study devices exist in the form of LCD Tablet computers and laptops. It is the manufacturers of those devices that have to hone their markets and produce a more adequate product. When technology permits, eink will join in the fray. For now only the Iliad allows the necessary search and input functions required for study and business and it does not reflect the power management eink is regarded for.
yvanleterrible is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2007, 11:10 AM   #15
imanlhakim
Junior Member
imanlhakim ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.imanlhakim ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.imanlhakim ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.imanlhakim ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.imanlhakim ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.imanlhakim ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.imanlhakim ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.imanlhakim ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.imanlhakim ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.imanlhakim ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.imanlhakim ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 8
Karma: 475352
Join Date: Jul 2007
Device: IPAQ 1950 and PRS-500
screen min 12" is a must, resolution min 600 DPI, gray scale 16
imanlhakim is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Perfect book light for the JBL! booklover6 Ectaco jetBook 13 09-12-2010 02:04 PM
My Perfect Reader Would Have: CyGuy Which one should I buy? 5 11-05-2009 11:35 AM
Essential characteristics of the 'perfect' E-book reader in 2010. jackau News 34 09-16-2009 10:57 AM
Why there isn't a perfect e-book reader (Gizmodo) Alexander Turcic News 44 02-27-2009 09:04 AM
[Librie] Broken dreams of the perfect e-book reader Alexander Turcic Legacy E-Book Devices 2 05-01-2005 11:13 AM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 04:57 AM.


MobileRead.com is a privately owned, operated and funded community.