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Old 11-01-2010, 08:53 AM   #1
Telly
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Reading for Research

As I mentioned in the intro thread, I've been searching for my perfect e-reader for two years. Maybe it's time I settled, but I'm hoping to get some expert opinions before I do.

What would you recommend for someone who wants...

1. to read public-domain books from GoogleBooks (not just "classics" offered by many e-book stores, but the more obscure stuff, too);

2. to highlight and make notes easily, preferably in one step, without having to choose from a menu;

3. to export those highlighted passages and notes into a program like EverNote, or even just MS Word;

4. the features that make an e-reader great for pleasure-reading, too: wi-fi connectivity, an extensive and easy-to-shop store, light weight.

I may be wrong about this, but it seems like e-reader manufacturers are focusing on one kind of reader (who reads for pleasure) and overlooking a whole market of potential buyers who need to work and interact with text.

Anyway, looking forward to your suggestions. Thanks!
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Old 11-01-2010, 09:14 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Telly View Post
I may be wrong about this, but it seems like e-reader manufacturers are focusing on one kind of reader (who reads for pleasure) and overlooking a whole market of potential buyers who need to work and interact with text.
Have you considered a tablet - iPad, Galaxy Tab, Nook Color?
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Old 11-01-2010, 10:39 AM   #3
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Have you considered a tablet - iPad, Galaxy Tab, Nook Color?
Yeah. Do you think that's what I want? The iPad seems heavy to me, though, and I'd still be reading GoogleBooks on the site, wouldn't I? I find reading there kind of cumbersome.

Nook Color--I haven't been able to find anything specific about how it interacts with Google Books.

Probably, one of those is what I need to go with, but (and this may be an irrational psychological block) I keep thinking I want e-ink.
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Old 11-03-2010, 06:36 AM   #4
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You should consider the Entourage Edge, it does all the things you want. The only disadvantage is the weight.
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Old 11-03-2010, 10:42 AM   #5
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To be honest with you, just about all of the e-readers these days do the things you are asking about. I have read rave reviews about the dictionary, highlighting, and note taking function on the new Sony's. The touchscreen is suppose to work really well for those features. I have no idea how easy it is to export notes from the Sony and everyone seems to be in agreement that Sony has one of the worst bookstores.

The Kindle can be used for taking notes and highlighting. I do think that they are seperate processes. I have only used the highlight feature so I am not sure if you can highlight something while taking a note. Your highlighted pages, notes, and bookmarks are saved to a website that you can print from or move the information to a word document of you want.

Goggle books should be usable on the Kindle. If they are in EPub you would have to convert them but that is easy enough with Calibre. Amazon has the largest available bookstore. The Kindle is lightweight and has plenty of connectivity.

If I were you I would go to Best Buy and compare the Sony and Kindle. They are the two readers that most folks mention for highlighting and note taking.
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Old 11-03-2010, 11:37 AM   #6
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You should consider the Entourage Edge, it does all the things you want. The only disadvantage is the weight.
the Entourage Edge looks beautiful, but at 3lbs it wighs more than my laptop. Sure, it is cheaper, but if you have to go around with both laptop and e-reader, your shoulder will star aching in no time...

The PB903 should be out in a month, if you can be patient until then, I am sure you will get plenty of feedback on its annotation capabilities (I think there is a bunch of us that have pre-ordered the PB903 taking advantage of the launch price thinking annotation will be ok).
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Old 11-03-2010, 06:52 PM   #7
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annotation with the ipad

Newbie here, so I hope I'm adding this link correctly. It's to a brief article that describes some of the quirks of academic reading and notetaking (like the need to quickly move between and compare pages) and discusses some of the current limitations of ereaders and apps like iBooks.



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Old 11-03-2010, 06:53 PM   #8
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www.makeuseof.com/tag/apples-ibooks-ereader-making-annotations/
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Old 11-03-2010, 07:09 PM   #9
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http://www.applematters.com/article/...g-on-the-ipad/

Another ipad-only app for annotating pdfs.

This isn't a plug for ipads. I prefer the e-paper look and low energy use, but want to make a dent in more than my pleasure reading pile.

But I think I'm beginning to understand why so many people are acquiring more than one e-reading device...
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Old 11-03-2010, 08:04 PM   #10
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The PB903 should be out in a month, if you can be patient until then, I am sure you will get plenty of feedback on its annotation capabilities (I think there is a bunch of us that have pre-ordered the PB903 taking advantage of the launch price thinking annotation will be ok).
Pocketbook is completely new to me, but looks interesting--I'll be checking it out. I didn't see anything about a 903 model on their site, but I just did a quick look-see. Thanks!
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Old 11-03-2010, 08:35 PM   #11
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Goggle books should be usable on the Kindle. If they are in EPub you would have to convert them but that is easy enough with Calibre. Amazon has the largest available bookstore. The Kindle is lightweight and has plenty of connectivity.
Helpful info, thanks. I didn't know you could do the website retrieval of your highlights and notes with Kindle.

I couldn't get Google books to work with my Gen 1 Kindle (which I no longer have), but I'm guessing there has been progress since then.

So maybe I need to get educated on file conversion. I keep trying to find ways to avoid it.
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Old 11-03-2010, 08:37 PM   #12
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Well the Aluratek Libra Pro is out, can't deliver on items two or four. However the Pandigital Novel can meet your specs - however I think the boot time will make you have second thoughts about buying one. I owned one into it got stolen.
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Old 11-03-2010, 08:42 PM   #13
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Excellent, Anjirlly. Thanks a bunch.
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Old 11-03-2010, 11:46 PM   #14
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I have a Kindle and an iPad. I use the Kindle for reading books for pleasure. I use the iPad and iAnnotate (mentioned in the second article) for research and reading pdf's. With iAnnotate you can email/extract a summary of just your markups -- it is very useful. iAnnotate does cost $10 in addition to the need to buy an iPad. In additions, it only reads pdf's, and I suspect you will find that most of the things you might pull from google books will be in epub.

The other advantage of an iPad is that it lets you easily move around a page. When I'm reading for research, I want to move up/down and back/forth to compare text sections. With an iPad I just touch the screen and I fluidly move the page around on the screen. I can also easily zoom in and out to focus on a section of the text.

Someone above talks about the use of Sony and it's touchscreen e-ink unit. I would love to hear from someone who has one of these to understand how it works. My impression is that no e-ink based tech will have the fluidity of an LCD approach. Any page movement or zooming would have to include a flash and then a screen redraw.

As a long-time eink user I can tell you that this flash is virtually invisible when reading a fiction book. It is no worse than the 'flash' from turning the page on a paper book. However, it would seem to preclude the ability to smoothly zoom or drag the page back and forth.
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