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Old 03-23-2007, 04:19 PM   #1
buba
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E-book advice for a geeky Mac user :)

Hi all,

My first post here
After reading this forum for the last couple of days, I still can't make a decision on which E-book reader should I buy. I would really appreciate if you can give me an advice.
The conditions are:
- I am a happy Powerbook G4 user. If e-book content requires conversion to some special format, there should be Mac / Unix tools for doing that. Not to mention connectivity, of course
- I think I will use e-book device mostly for reading non-ascii texts (Russian, e.g. http://www.lib.ru/INOFANT/BRADBURY/farengejt.txt) and technical HTML documentation (e.g. http://www.docbook.org/tdg5/en/html/docbook.html). HTML formatting and hyperlinks should be preserved (conversion to plain text is not acceptable).
- Good battery life

Would be nice:
- PDF support
- Searching in HTML documentation
- Nice design

And it should be available in Europe (Holland). Internet ordering from reliable source is acceptable too.

So many demands, so little choice Any opinion?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-27-2007, 10:39 PM   #2
texag
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I'm wondering too....wait for the Kindle? Probably a much better e-experience shopping on Amazon. The question is how long do we wait and will the Kindle have Mac support?
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Old 04-28-2007, 02:24 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by texag
I'm wondering too....wait for the Kindle? Probably a much better e-experience shopping on Amazon. The question is how long do we wait and will the Kindle have Mac support?
There are two ways to try to answer this (given an almost complete lack of detailed information about the Kindle).

The first is to look at Mobipocket support, since Amazon owns Mobipocket and probably the Kindle is based on Mobipocket software. Mobipocket has good Windows PC support, but only "pass through" Linux/Mac support as explained here.

The second is to point out that the Kindle will have a cell phone network based method of downloading content. This has the big advantage (e.g. over the Sony Reader, which only supports Windows PCs) of not requiring any computer to act as an intermediary, but the disadvantage of probably only working in some parts of the world.
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Old 04-29-2007, 01:19 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buba
I think I will use e-book device mostly for reading non-ascii texts (Russian) and technical HTML documentation. HTML formatting and hyperlinks should be preserved (conversion to plain text is not acceptable).
Like several other software readers, FBReader is developed by Russians (and so has good Russian support). I use FBReader on a Nokia 770 (800x480 LCD screen), and it is now also available on the iLiad. I don't yet have an iLiad, but I will probably buy one when iRex releases the "2007" version. I'm not sure if FBReader will run as an X11 application on a Mac, but there is a Linux Desktop version you might be able to get working on your Mac (e.g. under Parallels or VMWare) to test it out. FBReader reads many non-DRM formats directly, without conversion. It supports HTML, but really only single-page HTML because each file is treated as a separate e-book. A better option is to convert HTML into CHM or Plucker documents, which retains their links etcetera (many technical manuals are already available as CHMs). All documents can be searched, but there is no bookmark or annotation capability. PDF is not supported by FBReader, but is available via other software on the Nokia and iLiad. The battery life of the 770 is about 4 hours but it has a good sleep mode - and in general is a very nice design. Nokia's newest Linux Internet tablet is the N800, which is more capable than the 770 but a marginally worse e-book reader (because it has no hard case and the redesigned keys are harder to use when reading). The iLiad has a longer battery life than the 770 but no instant on capability, and the battery has been one area of concern for the user base. It is certainly very poor for an e-ink device.
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