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Old 03-23-2023, 02:30 PM   #1
Renate
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Smile Needs of people who use Onyx productively?

I love Onyx. I read on it, but I don't use it "productively". I don't annotate, edit or compose on it besides occasionally using it for raw typing input to be processed elsewhere.

For those who do use it productively: is there any key aspect, helper or omission that needs to be addressed? Do you interact with the "cloud"? Do you need better interfacing with your desktop? Do you even have a desktop?

I recently wrote a pair of programs that allows you to paste Unicode text (i.e. Chinese, Russian, Japanese, English, etc) from your desktop to an Android. I haven't gotten much response on this. Is this something useful? Or maybe the reverse case, pasting from Android to desktop? What is your deepest, darkest desire?
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Old 03-25-2023, 12:00 PM   #2
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I use it mainly for reading and some web surfing / research with a USB keyboard and a mouse.

It didn't replace my PC.
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Old 03-29-2023, 02:32 PM   #3
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The interaction between PC and Android you developed is close to what I'm looking for...I would like to have a simple way to get files from a Chromebook, Android phone, or Linux laptop over to my Boox.

Personal workflow // long-form reading, note-taking, annotating epubs (not crazy about Boox epub handwritten annotation, but it's growing on me), and PDFs. Still trying to decide if the 10.3 screen is too large for epubs.

When I had the NA2, having a quick and easy way to send websites I'm viewing (on a Linux, Chromebook, or Android phone) direct to the NA2 would be nice-- send as PDF or epub --without Boox website interaction.

I downloaded einkbro (eink browser) to the NA2 which provides a simple view of websites and can also export sites as an epub. Once you have an epub created from a website, you can then export additional sites to the same epub and they become chapters linked to a TOC. Cool feature, but it takes a lot of interactions to do it and I have to either be on the NA2 running einkbro or if I do this on my Chromebook or phone and have to figure out a way to push the files to the NA2, which can be tedious.

The sendtokindle and sendtoremarkable Chrome extensions, and sendtokindle Android app, once configured, are a breeze to use and do a decent job most of the time.

Professional workflow // I mostly use tablets for taking meeting notes, reading occasional PDFs, annotating, etc. Pretty much all dependent on Neoreader.

Misc // I would like to see a script-o-matic way to debloat a rooted Boox. I've used the Universal Android Debloater on other devices and it works well if you want a slimmed-down device. There was another thread here on MR about debloating and degoogling a device. I actually like some of the Boox apps and features, just not anything that is dependent on Boox.com.

Would like to see a pushRSS app not dependent on Boox that is designed for Android tablets/eink with a feature to convert articles to epubs or PDFs similar to einkbro...bundle them into a single file with a TOC. I currently use Calibre to download news articles/rss feeds and I can either plug my Boox into my laptop or fire up the Calibre Content server and download them to the device. Not bad, but an on-device app would be better for this I think.
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Old 03-31-2023, 07:34 AM   #4
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I've got a bunch of utilities (some in beta) that are sometimes "a solution waiting for a problem":
  • adbsync I use daily to sync my desktop with devices. Content goes from desktop to device, notes and photos go back
  • adbgrab allow mirroring of the screen and taps, typing, but slow as it does not use any utility on the device itself
  • keyer a hardware solution to allow very fast automated typing from desktop to device
  • swiper a software solution to turn a master device into a controller for a slave device, useful for broken screens
  • copyclip an Android utility for inserting text into the Android clipboard
  • adbclip a Windows utility for copying the Windows clipboard to copyclip
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Old 03-31-2023, 10:41 AM   #5
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I mainly write text on a Poke and edit the text on a Note. I use QuickEdit as a text editor. I use Gboard keyboard. I use Menu Button to give me a Back button so I can hide the keyboard quickly to free up screen space. The Nova lacks a physical Back key, so this is essential. It's not perfect, but it does the job.

Things that would be handy:

1. A soft keyboard that includes arrow cursor buttons easily accessible, like when I click in the numbers toggle key. Cursor buttons would be a lot more useful than a bunch of weird characters I will never use. The Onyx touch screen is not sensitive, and it is pain to move the cursor by touch. Cursor keys would fix this. The old Nook SimpleTouch keyboard had an excellent keyboard with cursor keys. Also no emoji key. No spell check row forced on the user. A simple keyboard adapted to e-ink.

Gboard is also good because it it offers a dark and white theme. QuickEdit also has this, so I switch between colors day and night.

2. A quick way to access app settings. I don't know if it's just my FW, but I have to come out, go into apps, apps settings, refresh settings per app, then change it there. I have to do this when I change from dark to light themes. Not the end of the world. In Quickedit, the line flashes where the cursor is in white day theme, so I have to find the right refresh setting to stop the line flashing. I don't seem to have an animation filter on my Note. Maybe FW version. If it's there, I can't find it. Then I have to change it all back for dark mode.

Last edited by Pajamaman; 03-31-2023 at 10:46 AM.
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Old 03-31-2023, 11:09 AM   #6
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On every basic dream: I'd like to have a way to save/backup an ePub with handwritten notes. Actually I can only manually backup the ePub pages with handwritten notes in pdf (for each single ePub) . I fear to lost the notes.
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Old 03-31-2023, 01:20 PM   #7
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I'd like to have a way to save/backup an ePub with handwritten notes.
Where are the annotated PDFs saved?
Do you want to save them to some cloud thing?
Do you use wired ADB?
Do you use wireless ADB?
Do you have a local server on your WiFi LAN?
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Old 04-01-2023, 04:43 AM   #8
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Where are the annotated PDFs saved?
Do you want to save them to some cloud thing?
Do you use wired ADB?
Do you use wireless ADB?
Do you have a local server on your WiFi LAN?
I don't want to automatic save the PDFs annotated, I want a way to save the annotated ePubs. On the device, not cloud.
If I'll buy a new Onyx, I'll lose all the notes I done on ePubs... I can not backup or copy them.
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Old 04-01-2023, 06:47 AM   #9
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Ok. I don't use the Onyx Reader and I don't take notes.
I don't know if notes are saved in a master database or a per-book file.
To backup something you have to know what it is and where it is.
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Old 04-01-2023, 10:30 AM   #10
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Ok. I don't use the Onyx Reader and I don't take notes.
I don't know if notes are saved in a master database or a per-book file.
To backup something you have to know what it is and where it is.
I think there is a central SQL database *somewhere*. But it is out of "normal" user control afaik.
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Old 04-01-2023, 11:45 AM   #11
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A test might be (on a rooted device at least) is open an epub, create an annotation, close the epub (saving the notes) and then run the find command searching for any files changed in the xx hour(s). If the find command is unable to perform a granular enough time search, then leave the device alone for 48-hours before running the epub annotation test.
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Old 04-01-2023, 03:33 PM   #12
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Apparently all that stuff is in /data/data/com.onyx.kreader/databases/
You can't access that unless you're rooted.

Since I am rooted (and moreover my ADB is rooted) I could adb pull (or adbsync) all those .db files off onto my desktop.
I presume that they'd work if you just put them back on your new device/s.o. elses device.
They are SQLite databases. They are named after the MD5 hash of something.
In any case, they should work with the same document if they are both copied over.
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Old 04-02-2023, 08:37 AM   #13
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Apparently all that stuff is in /data/data/com.onyx.kreader/databases/
You can't access that unless you're rooted.
I see. So I need to root the device to try to backup my handwritten notes (insane!). Thank you anyway
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Old 04-02-2023, 11:12 AM   #14
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So I need to root the device to try to backup my handwritten notes (insane!).
It's worth doing in any case.
I discovered how they're naming things.
I'll make a utility after my walk...

Edit: It's complicated.
Onyx went through LOTS of different systems for organizing content.
Since I don't use their stuff the Onyx DBs on my content are from 2 years ago.
But I have the algorithm (decyphered from the latest code).

If somebody is rooted: Please annotate a (very) small book with scribbles and text.
Post the book and also the annotation DB (which is obviously the latest in that directory).
You can "cat" a db and get the sense of it (although it's mostly garbage).
If you annotate "I hate fishheads!" you can be sure to find "fishheads" in the raw DB file.
Then you'll know that you have the right file.


Onyx is using multiple versions of identity hashes and also migrating between them.
I figured out how they are doing the hashing in one part, but it turns out that they aren't hardly ever using that method.

In the directory that I mentioned is ContentDatabase.db which lists everything.
You can find your document in there and get its hash from there.
Then the file named after that hash is your annotations/scribbles.

Since the kreader is a big (175 MB) blob of amorphous (and obfuscated) code and since I don't use it, this is about that for me.

Last edited by Renate; 04-03-2023 at 09:34 AM.
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Old 04-05-2023, 12:18 PM   #15
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I downloaded einkbro (eink browser) to the NA2 which provides a simple view of websites and can also export sites as an epub. Once you have an epub created from a website, you can then export additional sites to the same epub and they become chapters linked to a TOC. Cool feature, but it takes a lot of interactions to do it and I have to either be on the NA2 running einkbro or if I do this on my Chromebook or phone and have to figure out a way to push the files to the NA2, which can be tedious.
If you install Google Drive App, when saving epub files in EinkBro App, you can select folders and files inside Google Drive folders (through system file picker). In this way, there's no need to do the sync manually. Google Drive will do the chores. That's how I use the save-to-epub feature all the time.
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