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Old 05-06-2009, 05:48 PM   #136
nrapallo
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I guess with it's larger screen AND native PDF support, I won't see any spike in PDFRead downloads when the Kindle DX gets released.
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Old 05-06-2009, 05:52 PM   #137
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Forgive me if this point has already been made, but this caught my eye in the NYT story about the DX:

"Amazon also said that three newspapers, The New York Times, The Boston Globe and The Washington Post, would begin offering devices this summer at a reduced price to subscribers who sign up for long-term subscriptions. But few details were available, and both Amazon and the newspapers described it as a pilot program."

$489 is a lot, even though it is less than the current competition. But if the NYT and others subsidize the purchase price for a subscription, the cost could be significantly lower. $10 a month to get the NYT and the DX for $ ____? Might make it worthwhile, and affordable for me. That's the point of these papers signing on isn't it, win win? I have no idea what I say here but couldn't this sell a whole hell of a lot Kindle DX's?

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Old 05-06-2009, 05:56 PM   #138
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Yes, I also find it disappointing that you cannot annotate or highlight PDF documents on the Kindle DX (according to the current version of the users' guide), however I personally don't find that a deal-breaker. I usually either take notes on paper or I can just bookmark the page to come back and look at it. It would have been nice if Amazon allowed PDF annotation/highlighting but may be they will add it in a future firmware update?

As for PDF searching, I believe it's contextual in nature. If you use the global search, it only searches the PDF metadata but it isn't powerful enough to search the content of *all* PDF files stored on the device. However, if you use the 'Search This Document' menu item while a PDF document is open, it searches the content of that PDF file. At least, that's how I imagine it should work. I could certainly be wrong.
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Old 05-06-2009, 06:09 PM   #139
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Originally Posted by DesiLinguist View Post
Yes, I also find it disappointing that you cannot annotate or highlight PDF documents on the Kindle DX (according to the current version of the users' guide), however I personally don't find that a deal-breaker. I usually either take notes on paper or I can just bookmark the page to come back and look at it. It would have been nice if Amazon allowed PDF annotation/highlighting but may be they will add it in a future firmware update?
My past experience has been that I take enough notes right on the printed page that just bookmarking things would leave me with a bewildering hodgepodge of bookmarks, with no idea where the important bits regarding, say, murine ribonucleotide reductase:structure of, as opposed to the important bits regarding prokaryotic ribonucleotide reductase: biochemistry of, could be found.

Regarding the firmware update possiblity--that would certainly be nice, and would be at least theoretically possible. But so far I've never seen Amazon include a new feature in a firmware update. (I can't tell you how often I've hoped the next firmware update would have folders, for example.) So I'm kind of dubious, though I would be happy to be wrong about this.

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As for PDF searching, I believe it's contextual in nature. If you use the global search, it only searches the PDF metadata but it isn't powerful enough to search the content of *all* PDF files stored on the device. However, if you use the 'Search This Document' menu item while a PDF document is open, it searches the content of that PDF file. At least, that's how I imagine it should work. I could certainly be wrong.
I agree that is a reasonable interpretation of the current confused state of the user manual on this issue. It would be better than nothing, so I hope it's the correct one.

However for me, being able to search the content of all the pdfs at once would be pretty important. See above about murine Ribonucleotide Reductase, for example. The last time I wrote a paper I had nearly a hundred documents involved--I hate to think how long it would take to search each of them individually.

Don't get me wrong--if it meets your needs (or other people's needs in general) I'm happy for you/them. But I'm beginning to doubt that it will meet mine.

And it's SO close!
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Old 05-06-2009, 06:20 PM   #140
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Everyone keeps talking about how great this will be for students and business applications.

I want to buy this because it be great for musicians who can convert all their music to PDF (or buy it that way -- usually non-drm'ed) and will be so much easier to use than hard copy music (with the possible exception of on-the-fly mark-ups). As a pianist, it would be easier to press "next page" than trying to flip the page and trying to get it to lay flat on the fly. Although having to go backwards for codas sounds suboptimal if you actually have to rotate it.

Still, the larger size opens up a lot of possibilities for other uses for musicians, craft persons (knitters ??) etc. Now to sell my Kindle 2...
Someone will have to invent a little electromechanical device that clamps over the Kindle NextPage & PrevPage buttons that attaches to a footswitch that lets you turn pages using your toes.

Anyway, I like the idea - 9" screen may still not be large enough for my eyes but I hope somebody will report as to how well it works (or not) once they have shipped.
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Old 05-06-2009, 06:23 PM   #141
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While I can see that one is able to send music and audiobooks to the KDX from a PC (presumably by UMS,) I don't see that one is able to do that with PDFs.

Is it possible that text content can only be received over Whispernet?
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Old 05-06-2009, 06:30 PM   #142
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My past experience has been that I take enough notes right on the printed page that just bookmarking things would leave me with a bewildering hodgepodge of bookmarks, with no idea where the important bits regarding....
That type of stuff is why I still doubt I'll ever move to electronic devices for my academic pdf use.

It just seems like it will always be quicker and easier to highlight and write notes in the margins (which I do a TON) on a printed PDF, and faster to pull it out of the well organized file cabinet and flip through it and find the important bits.

I could see a tablet device with an A4 or larger screen eventually making the writing notes and highlighting about as easy--currently I struggle to write small and neat enough to put notes in the margins on the tablet PCs I've played around with.

But it will always be a bit slower to flip through pages in PDFs (or set up a lot of specifically named bookmarks when annotating it the first time) to find the important bits down the road. So I remain skeptical that I'll personally find a device that makes me want to eschew just printing out, marking up and filing away important articles related to my research or teaching.
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Old 05-06-2009, 06:41 PM   #143
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That type of stuff is why I still doubt I'll ever move to electronic devices for my academic pdf use.

It just seems like it will always be quicker and easier to highlight and write notes in the margins (which I do a TON) on a printed PDF, and faster to pull it out of the well organized file cabinet and flip through it and find the important bits. (snip).
Well, for me, I had the well organized file cabinet, but I didn't organize it the way other people did. For example, I kept the papers alphabetized by first author's last name, but my boss consistently remembered the name, not of the paper's first author, but of the person who directed the lab the research was done in. Sometimes, but not always, the paper's *last* author.

And sometimes I would want all the papers on "Saccharomyces cerevesiae Ribonucleotide reductase", no matter *who* the first author, or the lab director was. And sometimes I wanted all the papers on crystal structure... and so on.

So being able to search across documents for "Donaldson" or "crystal structure" would be a lot quicker on a Kindle that could really handle pdfs than with a file cabinet of papers. And being able to search annotations for "paydirt!" would be a lot handier than having to flip through a whole drawer of papers, even though I did make a point of writing it at the top.

Not to mention that the file cabinet of papers pretty much has to live in one room; it's not like you can take it to the library with you.
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Old 05-06-2009, 06:51 PM   #144
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I totally disagree, I don't think Sony is behind the 8ball at all, in fact if I were a student and all the text books became available in electronic form I'd rather lug around a Netbook pc than a Kindle. Do much more with a Netbook. Unless of course Amazon manages a monopoly on electronic text books and they are all in azw format, that would be tragic
A netbook is a pretty good idea actually.
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Old 05-06-2009, 06:59 PM   #145
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Well, for me, I had the well organized file cabinet, but I didn't organize it the way other people did. For example, I kept the papers alphabetized by first author's last name, but my boss consistently remembered the name, not of the paper's first author, but of the person who directed the lab the research was done in. Sometimes, but not always, the paper's *last* author.

And sometimes I would want all the papers on "Saccharomyces cerevesiae Ribonucleotide reductase", no matter *who* the first author, or the lab director was. And sometimes I wanted all the papers on crystal structure... and so on.

So being able to search across documents for "Donaldson" or "crystal structure" would be a lot quicker on a Kindle that could really handle pdfs than with a file cabinet of papers. And being able to search annotations for "paydirt!" would be a lot handier than having to flip through a whole drawer of papers, even though I did make a point of writing it at the top.

Not to mention that the file cabinet of papers pretty much has to live in one room; it's not like you can take it to the library with you.

Well, to be fair I don't have that many articles in my stashes. Just a few hundred probably, and only a small portion that I still refer to (vs. just citing from memory or from past papers I've written).

I just have them in a filing cabinet in folders by topic, and don't worry about organizing by name etc. as it's easy enough to just flip through and find the one I want. And I'm a professor, so no boss or other people who need to access my file cabinet, so that's not an issue as I just need an organization system that works for me. Also, being in criminology (and mainly doing policing research) it's probably easier to have stuff organized by topic than it is for more complex fields that aren't as easy to sub-categorize.

For portability, I have all my pdfs electronically in organized folders on all my computers and laptops, so I can look at the electronic one (sans notes and highlights of course--though if I looked at the electronic copies more I could just scan in the marked up copies). But I really don't need to bother with it as I don't work outside my office (or home office) very often. And when I do I just generally work on stuff that doesn't require looking at literature.

And library? Who goes to the library anymore? I've probably been 2 or 3 times in the past couple of years and that was to just grab a book. Pretty much every worthwhile journal in my field is fully available electronically now.

Anyway, I can see why you and others want and ereader for academic PDFs. I just don't really have a need for it on top of preferring to mark up and read paper printouts. But they definitely need to get a better suited device out for researchers who do want an electronic device to read and annotate academic PDFs easily.

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Old 05-06-2009, 07:04 PM   #146
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I think I'm going to wait and see what Astak and Plastic Logic are going to offer in this department. Or maybe the Kindle 4 will be able to search, highlight and annotate pdfs.
You don't need to wait for yet another Kindle. All it takes to annotate PDF is a firmware upgrade.
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Old 05-06-2009, 07:08 PM   #147
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Anyway, I can see why you and others want and ereader for academic PDFs. I just don't really have a need for it on top of preferring to mark up and read paper printouts. But they definitely need to get a better suited device out for researches who do want an electronic device to read and annotate academic PDFs easily.
Not to mention the dissertations we have to read! Last month, I had to read a 180-page long dissertation. For the first read, I formatted it to fit my Sony Reader, but couldn't do it for the second read for various reasons (i.e., I really need to annotate the document). Would have loved to save the 90 pages I ultimately printed (double sided) and toted around with me. It was this very purpose that I bought to the Sony Reader, but having a larger screen and one that permitted note-taking would be a much better solution.
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Old 05-06-2009, 07:13 PM   #148
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You don't need to wait for yet another Kindle. All it takes to annotate PDF is a firmware upgrade.
Depends on how you want to annotate. I have no interest in slowly typing with my thumbs. So if I changed my mind and decided to pick up an ereader for academic use it would have to have a touch/tablet screen that I could write easily and legibly on, and save those notes, underlines etc. to the pdf.

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Not to mention the dissertations we have to read! Last month, I had to read a 180-page long dissertation. For the first read, I formatted it to fit my Sony Reader, but couldn't do it for the second read for various reasons (i.e., I really need to annotate the document). Would have loved to save the 90 pages I ultimately printed (double sided) and toted around with me. It was this very purpose that I bought to the Sony Reader, but having a larger screen and one that permitted note-taking would be a much better solution.
Yeah, I could never see it for theses, dissertations etc. Just too much marking up, and you need to be able to flip through it quickly during the defense to give your comments to the student etc. etc. which would always be a bit clunky to do in real time on a reader.

And I don't really care about printing out stuff. I either keep it in my cabinet permanetly or recycle it so it doesn't bother my eco-conscience too much.
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Old 05-06-2009, 07:32 PM   #149
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If the DX supports PDFs natively will there be a firmware/software update for the K2 to read PDF's natively as well? Are PDFs being rendered by new hardware or software in the DX?
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Old 05-06-2009, 07:35 PM   #150
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I can imagine businesses using a device like this to store and review documents. For example a physician's or dentist's office. Scanning and adding metadata would be fairly painless, but I'm afraid users would quickly get frustrated without good software to access those documents (and 4 gig really isn't that much).

Too bad Amazon doesn't have a software API so that developers could design their own applications for the Kindle. They really could have something that goes beyond just eBooks.
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