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Old 06-03-2010, 10:43 AM   #1
goldzim
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Note-taking: please help!

It seems to me that the real promise of e-books lies in note-taking and -organization; imagine the promise of just highlighting relevant sections of text, adding your notes and your index-able and search-able categories or keywords, having the bibliographic information and date, etc., automatically added, etc.!

But what is so frustrating to me is that this function not only seems to receive scant attention from eBook reader developers but also from reviews! I can barely find any information on whether and which any of the readers or apps have these functions and how good they are, etc....

Please help!

Thank you, and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Best,
Aaron
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Old 06-03-2010, 10:49 AM   #2
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I'm afraid I'm not aware of any eBook readers which will do what you suggest; there are no devices that are currently aimed specifically at the academic market - they're all really sold with the primary emphasis being on mass-market fiction reading.

Almost all devices will allow you to set bookmarks. Some will allow you to highlight blocks of text. A few will allow you to add your own annotations, either free-hand or typed.
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Old 06-03-2010, 10:57 AM   #3
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Thank you, Harry.

- Are there any note-taking/reader computer applications that would do what I suggest? I would be happy to just read on my computer, if it meant I could do this.

- Which readers allow you to add your own typed annotations?

Thank you.
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Old 06-03-2010, 10:57 AM   #4
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I can't speak for any other e-readers, but I can for the Kindle.

The Kindle's keyboard allows you to make your own notes. Some people complain about the K2's keyboard; I like the fact that the K2 has separate numeric keys: the DX doesn't, but I like the DX's tic-tac shaped keys better because they're a bit more raised than the K2's.

On the Kindle you can search the book you are in or in all the books/documents on the device.

Making a bookmark, highlight or adding a note is easy, and the best thing is that it's so easy to access. When you make a note in a book, a little footnote appears on the page where you made the note. But while within a book, if you hit Menu and select, My Notes and Marks, you can view all your notes and highlights for that book. That area tells you the location of the note and the preview of the sentence that was highlighted or the note that you made. Also listed in this section is your bookmarks.

I find when a book doesn't have a table of contents, I can make my own easily, by leaving a bookmak at the begining of each chapter as I go. So if I want to go back a few chapters, I just go to My Notes and Marks, and there it is, my own Table of Contents.

Amazon backs up all your notes and highlights for Amazon bought ebooks, so long as you can syncy up to the Whispernet every once in a while. You also have the ability to view your notes and highlights online, here; http://kindle.amazon.com/. I found this very helpful when I was away from my Kindle AND computer, working on a Jane Austen essay.

Another good thing about the way the Kindle handles notes and Highlights is that the notes are not just stored with the book itself, but also in a text document titled My Clippings. My Clippings has all the notes/highlights and bookmarks you have made on every book/document on your Kindle. What better, if you connect your Kindle to computer you can open up the file, add and delete content from it, or copy and paste notes, quotes, highlights into another document!

As a student I find this really convenient.

I really didn't realize how good a job Amazon did on this until recently; I heard the Nook for example, at this time has no way to view all the notes you've made in the book. You have to page through every page until you find the note on the particular page you made it on.

I hope this helped some!

Last edited by Anarel; 06-03-2010 at 11:01 AM. Reason: More Info
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Old 06-03-2010, 11:01 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goldzim View Post
Thank you, Harry.

- Are there any note-taking/reader computer applications that would do what I suggest? I would be happy to just read on my computer, if it meant I could do this.

- Which readers allow you to add your own typed annotations?

Thank you.
If you want handwritten notes and annotations the current best tech is a Tablet PC. I use Bluebeam PDF Revu on my tablet PC.

If you're happy with typewritten and and require e-ink I think many ereaders can probably do that.
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Old 06-03-2010, 11:02 AM   #6
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Making a bookmark, highlight or adding a note is easy, and the best thing is that it's so easy to access. When you make a note in a book, a little footnote appears on the page where you made the note. But while within a book, if you hit Menu and select, My Notes and Marks, you can view all your notes and highlights for that book. That area tells you the location of the note and the preview of the sentence that was highlighted or the note that you made. Also listed in this section is your bookmarks.
The Sony PRS-600 has very similar functionality.
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Old 06-03-2010, 11:05 AM   #7
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The Sony PRS-600 has very similar functionality.

Ah, good to know, I've never seen one in person. I did say I only knew about the Kindle.
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Old 06-03-2010, 03:37 PM   #8
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The Sony PRS-600 has very similar functionality.
It is much more annoying to export the notes from the 600 or 900 (or 700, for that matter) than from the Kindle. With the Kindle it's just a text file. The Handwriting app notes are easy to export, though.

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Old 06-03-2010, 03:56 PM   #9
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It is much more annoying to export the notes from the 600 or 900 (or 700, for that matter) than from the Kindle. With the Kindle it's just a text file. The Handwriting app notes are easy to export, though.

Luqman
It's very easy to export your notes from the Sony as an RTF file, using Sony's desktop eBook Library software.
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Old 06-03-2010, 04:59 PM   #10
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The upcoming Plastic Logic Que promises such features. But with a production delay and $700-800 price tag I don't see how this one will survive.
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