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Old 10-31-2006, 02:02 PM   #16
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Great to see you are enjoying it so much and thanks for sharing, it's good to get real world reviews. I'd be really interested in hearing your comparison of the Sony and Iliad. I'm based in Europe and have an Iliad, and haven't yet had the chance (or time) to play with the Sony - what do you find are the differences and pros and cons?
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Old 10-31-2006, 03:16 PM   #17
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@Evan--

The main reason--to me--or getting one of these is dismantling my physical library. With Project Gutenberg, have been able to get rid of many older books, but lots of stuff is still unavailable. Until I can replace everything I own with files I can load & store from a PC, there is no content available to induce me to buy.

Secondly, I mostly read non-fiction, and there is precious little of that besides self-help and political biography, on Connect or elsewhere.

Its compelling, but not beyond a reasonable doubt.
We'll see where the chips fall after the DRM war.
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Old 10-31-2006, 03:30 PM   #18
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Yeah, Cthulhu, I'd love to be able to get rid of my paper books also. But I don't even dream about it anymore. So many advances would be required, and the time to scan my books would be prohibitive even if there were no copyright issues involved. As wonderful as the Sony might seem to us now, it's still not completely on par with all aspects of paper. It's just the first one that seems like it can legitimately boast itself as a reasonable alternatives with some good advantages. Unfortunately, I don't see being able to dump my paper books in my lifetime. Maybe a large portion of new books can be electronic, but that library of existing books is not likely to go electronic.
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Old 10-31-2006, 04:18 PM   #19
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The Amazon Kindle looked promising as for the features shown, but it's so UGHLY!

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:33 PM   #20
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Bob--

I caught that thread you posted about the feasability of scanning physical books.
The inability to transfer extant libraries is disappointing, though not surprisng.

Not to harp on a subject, but I believe that DRM, how we as consumers react to practices and how companies adapt their own models, is an important part of the evolution of e-text.

I fully agree with you on the notion of the Reader establishing legitimcacy for e-texts.
Content --or lack thereof--is still the biggest obstacle to me adopting this.
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Old 10-31-2006, 04:45 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cthulhu
Content --or lack thereof--is still the biggest obstacle to me adopting this.
Which is a massive improvement over lack of content and lack of decent hardware being the two big obstacles.

Another thing to consider is that as the Reader, and devices like it, become more widely adopted, the more pressure grows to make content available, so by adopting now, we're (hopefully) driving the process.

I'd hate to see you waiting forever to adopt some sort of reader, hoping for a situation where everything is perfect, 'cause that's not going to ever happen.

That being said: absolutely, you should wait until the balance of what you want and what seems to be coming is acceptable to you. Just don't wait forever, and never get any of it, is all.

I figure that no matter what, the only way I'll get a fully digital copy of my library is if I end up scanning at least some of it.

Last edited by NatCh; 10-31-2006 at 04:51 PM.
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Old 11-01-2006, 12:54 PM   #22
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Kind of makes me wish there was a "Tivo" for e-books. Truth is, I really don't care about 'owning' most books. I just want to read them! Oh wait, there is a potential Tivo for e-books - it's called the Public Library. I can just check out books for a time, read them and turn them back in when finished. And it doesn't cost me a dime personally. Sadly, libraries have been slow at bat dealing with e-books for a number of reasons (the same obstacles we deal with here mainly). My hope is that things will change and there are some good signs.

Many years ago in the US there were actually "paid" subscription lending-libraries. I would be glad to 'subscribe' to a similar thing for e-books. I don't want to 'buy' every book I read but would be glad to pay a monthly subscription fee to roam freely and check out several at a time. Maybe a "NetFlix" for ebooks? Just musing, but do really prefer a library-like model instead of single-title ownership.
Hopefully it will evolve in the same way downloadable music did - you can choose between the itunes purchase model or the Napster-like buffet approach.
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Old 11-01-2006, 12:57 PM   #23
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Old 11-01-2006, 01:24 PM   #24
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Personally I don't think DRM is bad - but it needs to be tempered with an associated economic incentive. Right now I can get a book from the library, as Jake says, or I can buy a second-hand book from Amazon marketplace, read it, and resell it - which comes out at an end cost of roughly 20% of the second hand price plus $3 shipping - frequently about $5-$6.

Furthermore, the marginal cost of an e-book is close to zero.

A DRMed book should be based on these kind of numbers. I can't resell it to recoup my costs, so the costs should factor that in. I would be quite happy to buy DRMed books that are no good to anyone else if they were under $5. Over $10 and I'm going to balk unless it is something I really want.

My point being, DRM - if used properly - can work to both the producer and the consumers benefit. Unfortunately in practice it mostly seems to support price gouging. In the long run though, I have hope - not hope that DRM will go away (it won't - it'll get tighter, tied to your DNA or something) but hope that the producers will realize that if they cut prices by 75% they would more than quadruple sales. I.e. hope that producers finally start to apply basic supply/demand curve economic principles to maximize their profits instead of greed based on stupidity.
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Old 11-01-2006, 01:36 PM   #25
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I am pretty sure that scanning and converting your legitimately purchased paper books is not a violation of the copyright. It's the uploading and sharing of those converted paper books that is the violation.

I, too, understand the need for DRM from a publisher's stand point, but I would like it to be a universal DRM rather than several proprietary DRMs.
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Old 11-01-2006, 02:04 PM   #26
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@ Da_Jane:

Apparently, in the UK (& maybe US) ripping files from a CD *you own* onto a computer *you own* is illegal. So I don't think that publishers will be any more happy about you scanning your own book.

The biggest obstacle to e-content is the competing formats. By that, I mean paper vs. plastic. Netflix, & Pongo, & iTunes, & Comcastondemand all work because the data is digital, in every form of delivery. We still have...for lack of better terminology...analog books. They compete directly with the "digital" content of e-text. A company is loath to abandon a system that works if it need not. Publishers want to keep their high overhead. Do they really need it for e-text? I don't know. It would stand to reason that e-text is cheaper than physical books, so why the price discrepancy except to discourage people from using one rather than the other.

Some libraries (I saw it on C-Span's book channel) are trying to have Divx style content available for library patrons; an e-book or audio file that can be downloaded, then de-rezzes after a pre-set time. I, and it seems many others, are fine with that, provided we pay an adjusted fee.

Hmm... Should I Start a petition here regarding an adjustment of e-text pricing?
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Old 11-01-2006, 02:09 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geekraver
Furthermore, the marginal cost of an e-book is close to zero.
For the physical implementation, yes, but then, the marginal cost of a pbook for just the book itself and shipping is the least significant part of the price. Royalties, retailer margin, profit, it all adds up.

If the marginal cost of producing and shipping pbooks is less than a dollar, I guess we should see ebooks a dollar or so less than their corresponding paperback/hardcover.

Well, son of a gun, they ARE!
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Old 11-01-2006, 02:12 PM   #28
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Making copies of your paper books for your own use has long been held as "fair use" in the U.S., so I think that scanning my owned paper books would likely fall under that precident. I don't see how it could be a violation of the DMCA since a p-book isn't digital in the first place!
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Old 11-01-2006, 02:48 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by da_jane
I am pretty sure that scanning and converting your legitimately purchased paper books is not a violation of the copyright. It's the uploading and sharing of those converted paper books that is the violation.
I may be wrong, but I believe that the scanning of an entire book falls outside the "Fair Use" precedent and is actually illegal. It's just too hard to catch if that's all you do. IT's when you upload & share that you get caught. Also your personal use usually stays below the radar & probably won't get noticed.
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Old 11-01-2006, 02:56 PM   #30
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I'm definitely no expert, and I'm not saying this makes sense, but doesn't the DMCA say it's a violation to even crack the DRM, regardless of whether you even copy it or not? Also, for paper books, I think that fair use may only cover small excerpts of paper works and for certain uses only.

I wonder how many people consider DRM the deciding issue for not buying an e-ink Reader? Or for not buying Connect e-books?
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