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

Go Back   MobileRead Forums > E-Book Readers > PocketBook

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 01-01-2011, 05:07 PM   #1
Zarathustra
Member
Zarathustra began at the beginning.
 
Posts: 17
Karma: 38
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Germany / Taiwan
Device: PB 903
PB 903 for scientific reading & bugs

PB 903 for scientific reading & bugs

I now have the PB 903 for some days. So, I want to share my experiences:

But first, I will start with my expectations:
1. I am a scientist. I have a large collection of PDF articles (> 2000) which I need for my daily work. They are sorted and categorized in a large database (JabRef). So, I want to make notes onto them and have them easily accessible.

2. I have to travel a lot. So, I am always running into trouble with subscriptions of newspapers etc because I am always at the wrong place.

3. Don´t blame me, but even if I am not travelling or not working, I still love to read books. Currently, I pack my stuff to settle over to asia and I have this huge pile of books. Shall I throw them away ? - or take them as EBooks with me ?

My Review / First impression:

First of all, the PB 903 leaves a solid impression on me. It sits well in my hands, it reacts appropriatly. The display is sharp and the contrast fine. The time to load a pdf is sufficiently low - in some cases it might take longer if you zoom in (I think eveyrthing has to be recalculated).

(Book) I did not test it so much as it is not the first priority.

(Minus - Book - PDF - Dictionary) But of course, I tested some of the functionality. The operation of the dictionary is simple. But I face a systematic system error / crash in the following case.
1. Open a book pdf.
2. Activate dictionary (select a word etc.)
3. Leave dictionary active
4. Go to the next page.
After this procedure, the PB 903 will hang and you will have to switch off and on again.

(Newspapers)
So, I downloaded some samples of newspapers. I am a bit dissapointed. Many newspapers do not offer sample issues (so I got a one page extract from the "Die Zeit" on request by email, a full version of the "Rheinische Post" can be found on their web page).

First impression, everything is rather small, which is not a big surprise as the format of typical newspapers is rather large. Therefore, lets try zooming and reflow.

(Newspaper - Reflow)
Reflow, basically failed to give a readable version. I have no previous experience, so I will not blame anybody. I can certainly imagine that a reflow for a 4-column newspapers with not very well defined edges can be rather tricky.

(Newspaper - Zooming)
Zooming principally works. The text is respectively scaled and by using the left / right buttons you are able to read the articles. But you will also face some problems.

(Minus - Zooming - Left/right)
The first malfunctioning of the software can be observed in the following way:
1. Take a PDF of a large sized newspaper
2. Take zoomfactor 120 - 170 per cent
You will now realize, that the left and right sides are not accessible.
The text becomes reaccessible, if you increase the zoom factor to 200 per cent.

(Minus - Zooming - Movement)
What is really annoying is when you try to read an article which is in the middle of the page. Let us take the following example:

a a a a
a b b a
a b b a
a a a a

Thereby, b denotes the area which you want to read, and a are other columns. Obviously, you would like to zoom in such that you get

b b
b b

First of all, you move the visual area from left to right. because you cannot say directly the PB where you want to go - you have to do it in many small steps. In the end, you will get the following result:

a a
b b

Different to the left right movement the top - bottom movement is done in a single step. So you have to jump back and forth between

a a and b b
b b and a a

Conclusion, I would wish that you could define with the pen the area to zoom in.

(Scientific journals - PDF)

Typically, scientific journals are in A4 or in the american format. But anyhow, opening such an article will give you something which you can nicely read. Problematic are only the images. Instead of employing the pen, you have to use many steps to zoom in into a specific region.

(Minus - scientific journals - PDF - annotations)

As mentioned already in other articles, annotations are de facto not supported. This, I find personally very dissapointing.

In summary: The pen functionality is only supported in a way to replace the buttons. The potential of the pen is even not touched.

.................

Other aspects:

The PB 903 offers additional applications. Well, again, they are not my focus, I still played around with them.

(calendar) It is basically a calendar. I hope, it will be extended to something which can be used as a schedule, i.e. leave notes in it, etc., and update with the PC. Should not be too tough to program.

(scribler) Well, very poor.
=> should be extended to something real.

---------------------

summary:

The PB 903 has a large potential when the software is improved. But the competition with screen netbooks (like iPad) started. If they do not hurry up (I would say less than 6 months) they will run into the same trouble as Irex. If they manage to improve on the software, well, it will become a nice niche product.
Zarathustra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2011, 05:25 PM   #2
paola
Wizard
paola ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.paola ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.paola ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.paola ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.paola ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.paola ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.paola ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.paola ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.paola ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.paola ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.paola ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
paola's Avatar
 
Posts: 2,757
Karma: 5274946
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: UK
Device: Pocketbook Pro 903, (beloved Pocketbook 360 RIP), Kobo Mini, Kobo Aura
Many thanks for your helpful review
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zarathustra View Post
The PB 903 has a large potential when the software is improved. But the competition with screen netbooks (like iPad) started. If they do not hurry up (I would say less than 6 months) they will run into the same trouble as Irex. If they manage to improve on the software, well, it will become a nice niche product.
From what you write, I think I have similar needs to yours _ I do very much hope that Pocketbook developes the software, as e.g. the potential for annotation was one of the main selling points for me!
paola is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Enthusiast
Old 01-01-2011, 05:32 PM   #3
LoneTech
Zealot
LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.
 
Posts: 135
Karma: 7767
Join Date: Oct 2010
Device: PocketBook Pro 903
The dictionary bug you mention doesn't seem to occur on mine. Perhaps there's some detail in how to reproduce that differs.
For the rest of the comments, I can only agree, though a decent schedule program is surprisingly hard, to the degree that I haven't found one yet. Most fail to accomodate time zones correctly, which breaks import/export.
LoneTech is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2011, 05:51 PM   #4
Boreras
Member
Boreras began at the beginning.
 
Posts: 21
Karma: 10
Join Date: Apr 2008
Device: TBA
There could be a very intuitive solution to the zooming page: allow one to select a tool to crop the pdf with your stylus by tapping the (2 or 4) corners of the rectangle you would like to zoom in to -- and consequently make this the default cropping for all pages of this specific pdf. (Well, there are some considerations to be made, like when you cannot accurately view a single page or scrolling on pages is required. Then the selected area can nonetheless be considered as the only area of all pages/this page you're interested in (the rest would be the margins). It would end the hassle of fiddling about to exclude the proper margins.)

A A A A
A B B A
A B B A
A B B A
A A A A
becomes by selecting the dots (presumably after selecting a cropping tool)
A.A A A
A B B A
A B B A
A B B.A
A A A A

In this case A would be the margins and B the text.

Anyway, could you elaborate on the reading of scientific articles? I'm mostly interested in these sort of articles -- LaTeX a4/a4-wide and journal publications. For example can you comfortably read a wholepage in full screen, with or without margins?
Boreras is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2011, 06:01 PM   #5
Zarathustra
Member
Zarathustra began at the beginning.
 
Posts: 17
Karma: 38
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Germany / Taiwan
Device: PB 903
Quote:
The dictionary bug you mention doesn't seem to occur on mine. Perhaps there's some detail in how to reproduce that differs.
Actually you are right - it happens only with the adobe viewer but not with the other one. I only use adobe because I had some trouble with images in scientific articles with the other viewer.
Zarathustra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2011, 06:13 PM   #6
Zarathustra
Member
Zarathustra began at the beginning.
 
Posts: 17
Karma: 38
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Germany / Taiwan
Device: PB 903
Quote:
Anyway, could you elaborate on the reading of scientific articles? I'm mostly interested in these sort of articles -- LaTeX a4/a4-wide and journal publications. For example can you comfortably read a wholepage in full screen, with or without margins?
I just had a look. Full page is a bit too small. After removal of the margins - the complete page is perfectly readable.

Note: full page, it is still fine - but some unnice shading. Presumably, it is only because the letter size does not fit well to the screen size. It somehow looks like if you take a LCD screen and operate it under a different resolution.
Zarathustra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2011, 06:14 PM   #7
Dulin's Books
Wizard
Dulin's Books ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Dulin's Books ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Dulin's Books ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Dulin's Books ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Dulin's Books ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Dulin's Books ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Dulin's Books ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Dulin's Books ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Dulin's Books ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Dulin's Books ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Dulin's Books ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 2,755
Karma: 12637788
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Portland, OR
Device: Boox PB360 etc etc etc
there absolutely should be a selection zoom with the stylus. this is one of the most basic things that should be available with any reader that has stylus input.
Dulin's Books is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2011, 06:26 PM   #8
LoneTech
Zealot
LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.
 
Posts: 135
Karma: 7767
Join Date: Oct 2010
Device: PocketBook Pro 903
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boreras View Post
Anyway, could you elaborate on the reading of scientific articles? I'm mostly interested in these sort of articles -- LaTeX a4/a4-wide and journal publications. For example can you comfortably read a wholepage in full screen, with or without margins?
The screen size is fairly close to A5, so it displays nearly half size. For me, that document is readable at 120% zoom level, but at 130%, which perfectly strips the left and right margins, some text disappears through the bottom edge. This is all the more annoying as it's keeping a blank piece of top margin in view. Some illustrations have very thin lines, which become a bit faint. The example here is the shapes within the boxes and the dotted vertical lines. The vertical scrolling by buttons is too crude when trying to examine a specific figure closely; we really need some more basic stylus functions.
LoneTech is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2011, 06:36 PM   #9
LoneTech
Zealot
LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.LoneTech knows the square root of minus one.
 
Posts: 135
Karma: 7767
Join Date: Oct 2010
Device: PocketBook Pro 903
I can confirm the dictionary bug now. It consistently occurs with the linked PDF above; I open dictionary, switch page.. and the activity light stays on after the new page is rendered and AdobeViewer stops responding. The dictionary panel does not show up again. It is not necessary to reboot, as a force quit (hold the back button a while) can kill AdobeViewer. It fails to preserve information like what page it was on, however.

On second check, it is indeed pdfviewer in which I failed to reproduce the bug earlier. My mistake. As a sidenote, it would be nice if AdobeViewer allowed a stylus tap on zoom level like pdfviewer does.

Also, it is not specific to PDF. AdobeViewer does this for epub as well. I have mapped the + (volume up) key to open the dictionary, and this exposes another strange thing: AdobeViewer switches to the next page if I hit the dictionary button while the dictionary is open. And since this triggers the bug, it hangs.

Last edited by LoneTech; 01-01-2011 at 07:24 PM.
LoneTech is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2011, 06:16 AM   #10
rfog
Evangelist
rfog ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.rfog ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.rfog ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.rfog ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.rfog ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.rfog ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.rfog ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.rfog ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.rfog ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.rfog ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.rfog ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 404
Karma: 238214
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Elda - Alicante (Spain)
Device: PB903, K2, K3, K2i, KDX, iPad, Q1U, X51v, TM2
@Zarathustra, if you want a very usable portable tool to manage PDF as scientific papers and so, the iPad (with GoodReader or iAnnotatePDF) is the perfect tool.

Currently I have in my iPad about 30 GB of papers, all name indexed by GoodReader (they can be searched by name).

You can annotate them and when you take the annotated PDF from iPad to computer the annotations remains into PDF and you can see them in Acrobat Reader or whatever other PDF viewer supporting annotations. And vice-versa.

PDF access is instant, and zooming, cropping, page turning is instantaneously too.

The only two problems I find viewing PDF in iPad is the quality of the fonts (*) and after some hours using the fingers to move around the screen it becomes "blurry" and needs a cleanning. However, sometimes (one in 1000) the apps crashes.

(*) Despite the fact iPad screen has an impressive quality, the font render engine is a big piece of crap that shows fonts with a very low quality compared as it could be shown. A sample can be my iMac, that has the same LED screen: Running Windows the font quality is superior to any other screen I've seen, but running Snow Leopard the fonts sucks.
rfog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2011, 05:51 PM   #11
Zarathustra
Member
Zarathustra began at the beginning.
 
Posts: 17
Karma: 38
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Germany / Taiwan
Device: PB 903
Hi Frog !

"Currently I have in my iPad about 30 GB of papers, all name indexed by GoodReader (they can be searched by name)."

Actually, you are probably right - unfortunetly & it is a shame. Today, I used the PB 903 for working and it fullfils my expectations in terms of readability - but I, full of steam, was sitting in front of it and trying to make some kind of annotations, i.e. in mind i moved the pen to mark - what a desperate situation. How do you say - pain in the ass ?!
Zarathustra 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
Reading just PDF's: what to expect 902/903 Energetics PocketBook 8 11-11-2010 07:04 PM
rotating page into sony prs 600 + reading scientific papers manustone Which one should I buy? 1 07-25-2010 08:03 PM
Scientific study shows reading iPad before bedtime can cause nightmares SirBC General Discussions 7 04-27-2010 10:41 AM
reading and working with scientific books sammy Which one should I buy? 1 04-15-2010 10:04 AM
Reading Scientific papers on Kindle DX addepalli1 Amazon Kindle 15 12-09-2009 11:42 AM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:48 PM.


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