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Old 05-12-2008, 09:32 PM   #1
JackieFrost
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Ereader for Browsing the Web?

Hey guys been here lurking for some time now. Great posts and posters most of the time.

Was wondering if there is such a device out there with some rudimentary browser for the web, or is it just save .html pages and then read them on you e-ink device? As I have been reading around, it seems it's the latter, which is a pity, nothing like siting with a booklike devise and having the web at your fingertips it would seem.

As an aside, isn't the 6" size of most readers too damn small? Wouldn't in all considerations a 7" at least be more practical. I really don't like how a decent reading font can only have something like on average 5 words per page...
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Old 05-12-2008, 10:16 PM   #2
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Was wondering if there is such a device out there with some rudimentary browser for the web, or is it just save .html pages and then read them on you e-ink device?
The Kindle does have a web browser in it. Pretty basic from what I here.

You can use Calibre to download web pages... not sure if you need an RSS feed or if you can just do any page.

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As an aside, isn't the 6" size of most readers too damn small? Wouldn't in all considerations a 7" at least be more practical. I really don't like how a decent reading font can only have something like on average 5 words per page...
Well, a bit more than 5 words... perhaps 8-10. No, actually a 6inch screen isn't much smaller than a mass market paperback.

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Old 05-12-2008, 10:34 PM   #3
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hey bob, thanks for your reply!

I wasn't aware of this functionality of kindle, that does set it apart from the rest, I presume the browsing is via wi fi.

As for the size, true, not much smaller than mm paperbacks, but mm paperbacks are small to begin with, some of the smallest sizes of books out there, and you hardly have much of a margin to get an even smaller. I haven't had the chance to see a 6" device up close, but drawing it out on a piece of paper really took me by surprise at how small it seemed.
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Old 05-12-2008, 11:04 PM   #4
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I wasn't aware of this functionality of kindle, that does set it apart from the rest, I presume the browsing is via wi fi.
No, it uses "Whispernet" which is actually the Sprint EVDO cell phone network.

I don't think there is a WiFi radio on the Kindle.

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Old 05-12-2008, 11:13 PM   #5
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As an aside, isn't the 6" size of most readers too damn small? Wouldn't in all considerations a 7" at least be more practical.
There is iLiad which has an 8 inch screen

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I really don't like how a decent reading font can only have something like on average 5 words per page...
I am sure you mean per line
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Old 05-13-2008, 12:18 AM   #6
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There is iLiad which has an 8 inch screen



I am sure you mean per line
yeap, that's per line for sure, quite a battery drainer it would of been had my 5 words per page scenario been true, quite of bit of page flipping there...

Yeap the iliad is on my to buy list for the past one and a half years! And I am tempted to just go ahead and buy the be once a few hands on reviews start coming in.

But to tell you the truth I d be best suited with something nice and small but not too small, like a 7.something screen, and one for pdfs with the 9 and upward screen, which fits the profile for the aztex/netronix reader (finally a dream come true for large pdfs for a lot of us...and it seems on everybody's and their cousins' buying list).
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Old 05-13-2008, 02:36 AM   #7
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Web browsing on eInk screens doesn't really work terribly well due to their slow refresh rate. The iLiad will do it (via WiFi) and the Kindle via EVDO (if you live in the USA). I've seen it on the iLiad; it's really not very practical.
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Old 05-13-2008, 10:23 AM   #8
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The Kindle does have a web browser in it. Pretty basic from what I here.
It's definitely pretty basic, and pretty slow. Serious web browsing is not really possible, but it's a nice feature to have if you just have to see something right now. Navigation is pretty crude, and it works best with pages designed to be read on a mobile device.

I like the easy-to-set fonts - in the morning, when my eyes are good, I set it to "3", which is about 9-11 words per line, and then in the evening, when my eyes are bad, I set it up to "4" which is about 6-7 words per line.
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Old 05-13-2008, 02:54 PM   #9
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Navigation is pretty crude, and it works best with pages designed to be read on a mobile device.
I agree. Even for that, I still prefer my smartphone despite its small screen. Page draws take forever with the e-ink. I am not a patient woman. Wikipedia is great on it but that's a supported rather than experimental feature. If web browsing is important to you, I think a tablet PC or UMPC would make you much happier than any of the the e-ink devices. I'm sure someday in the not too distant future, we'll have lovely displays that are as kind on the eyes as e-ink but fast enough to support more applications. IMO, we're not there yet.
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Old 05-13-2008, 03:36 PM   #10
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I'm sure someday in the not too distant future, we'll have lovely displays that are as kind on the eyes as e-ink but fast enough to support more applications. IMO, we're not there yet.
Read an article in EETimes today that Seiko Epson has a new controller for e-ink that allows a fast enough refresh rate to get things like pull-down menus and maybe even stylus use on an e-ink screen. The controller chips are supposed to be rolling out next month, so maybe 6 months or a year down the line we'll see them in use.
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Old 05-13-2008, 03:40 PM   #11
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Read an article in EETimes today that Seiko Epson has a new controller for e-ink that allows a fast enough refresh rate to get things like pull-down menus and maybe even stylus use on an e-ink screen. The controller chips are supposed to be rolling out next month, so maybe 6 months or a year down the line we'll see them in use.
It may not be as fast as you think. Yes it has some speed ups for menu but that won't help browsing much. The refresh time is always specified in pure black and white and then the implementation is always gray scale which is significantly slower.

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Old 05-13-2008, 04:26 PM   #12
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I agree. Even for that, I still prefer my smartphone despite its small screen. Page draws take forever with the e-ink. I am not a patient woman. Wikipedia is great on it but that's a supported rather than experimental feature. If web browsing is important to you, I think a tablet PC or UMPC would make you much happier than any of the the e-ink devices. I'm sure someday in the not too distant future, we'll have lovely displays that are as kind on the eyes as e-ink but fast enough to support more applications. IMO, we're not there yet.
Yeah, the kind on the eyes bit is the most important thing for me, and, from what I can gather and correct me if I am wrong, there really is no much for that in terms of eink devices and other technologies on the market. I am getting increasingly tired to read more than a few paragraphs of text on my laptop, let alone a few pages of a scientific document or a full article on wikipedia say. And besides that, there's something about the whole affair, be it multitasking, be it a conditioned response or the fan on the cpu say, that I can't attain the same level of concentration as I do with a book or a few printed pages at hand...

I hear what you guys are saying about refresh rates, but I wouldn't want anything more than some primitive browsing function, seeing as I am really looking to replace some static article reading on my (future) ebook device instead of some flash playing website say. I just want to get away from the pc screen, being there all the time, you know, there are some lengthy articles that I would like to go over like reading a book, and not going into the trouble of first looking them up on my laptop, saving them to .html, and then transfering them to my ebook device.

So, Harry, can you really browse the net on the iliad, I mean the average user, or is it some super computer literate trick one has to pull to do that?

Jackie.
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Old 05-14-2008, 03:27 AM   #13
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You have to install something like the "Minimo" web browser. See here for instructions and more info.
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Old 05-14-2008, 06:58 PM   #14
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harry, thanks man.
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Old 05-20-2008, 03:59 AM   #15
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if you want more web browsing and can live w/o eink, you might consider the internet tablets from Nokia. Right now you can hunt up a deal on the N800's for under $200. I use FBReader and can browse the web pretty well...sorta...the display is 800x400. I am reasonably happy with my setup. And heck soon we will get free WiFi at all Starbucks when we use my Stabucks card to buy a coffee. And since I just drink plain old cawffee it's cheap access at about 80¢/hr...

Otherwise I would wait until the fall when we will see most, if not all of the next gen (or even variations on the current gen) eink reader devices released. Might be some better web browsing options in this next wave.
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