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Old 07-17-2017, 09:38 PM   #31
barryem
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I did my first ereading on an HP95lx palmtop with MS-Dos 5.0. I think it was 5.0. It was basically an MS-Dos computer sold in 1991 by HP that fit comfortably in a pocket. It weighed 11 ounces and was 99% compatible with full size MS Dos computers that didn't use protected mode. This was before Windows was popular so protected mode wasn't common.

It was bigger than today's phones but not by a lot. It used 2 AA batteries for power and they'd last about 20 hours. Rechargeable batteries of that day lasted about half as long.

Someone developed a reading program for it called Vertical Reader. It read plain text files and scrolled them. No paging. It was called Vertical reader because you held the device sideways to read, so that it kind of resembled a book, since it folded, kind of like today's laptops except far smaller and thinner.

After that I began reading on one of the early Palm Pilots and over the years I kept getting more sophisticated Palms, finally getting a Palm Tungsten E2.

Palms had a 3" square screen which seemed at the time to be ideal for reading although now I'm spoiled by my Kindle and my phone. I haven't used a Palm in years and I doubt I'd enjoy it now. The screens on the earlier ones were 160x160 pixels. The E2 was 320x320 pixels although the screen was the same size. It made a big difference. The more expensive Tungstens had longer screens but the same width.

The real problem with Palms was their limited storage. It was only capable of using a 1 gig SD card. I forget how much built in storage there was but it wasn't much. I think it might have been 32 meg.

Apps in those days were a lot smaller, of course so that wasn't a huge problem. But you couldn't have many books on board.

Barry




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Old 07-17-2017, 09:56 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by DiapDealer View Post
Immediacy. Plain and simple.The ability to go from wanting to read something, to actually reading it within minutes.

As far as the relevance of the device: I bought my first ebooks before dedicated reading devices were readily available. I read them on Palm Pilots and Windows CE/Mobile devices.
Me three! I already had quite a few eBooks, mobi and epub formats, before getting my first eReader... a Nook.
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Old 07-18-2017, 11:21 AM   #33
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My ipaq is around here somewhere.
I've still got my Palm IIIx as well as its CDROM installation disc and charging cradle. Unfortunately the last time I tried to turn it on, a few months ago, it was completely dead. Even with fresh alkaline batteries it was still dead. Perhaps a new internal backup battery might bring it back, but I haven't checked that. I'm not sure why I kept it all these years, but I did. I also have an older HP organizer that does still work and it ran some proprietary OS that pre-dates the Palm OS. I probably still have them because I threw them into a junk box and forgot about them, and being an electronics pack-rat I kept my junk box.

I don't think I ever read eBooks on the HP organizer, it never worked very well BTW. But I definitely read a lot of eBooks on the Palm IIIx and later models, as well as a couple of Clié models, and a Treo with WM OS. Kindles were very cool until the screens on smartphones and tablets surpassed them. Then I returned to my earlier roots of reading on LCD screens.

And I seem to recall when MR changed its name to MR, or at least changed its logo to a PDA looking device with a wheel. I think they wanted to update the forum to better reflect the mobile devices that were becoming all the rage. I seem to remember a contest to create the new logo. I'm rather fuzzy on the details, so perhaps some of the old-timers from here can enlighten us.
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Old 07-18-2017, 11:31 AM   #34
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The later Palm Tungsten accepted SD cards.

I also had (still have, with dead battery) a watch that ran Palm OS.
Although I must admit I never tried reading a book on it.
Sure, I had a number of the later Palm devices, but they weren't Palm Pilots, of course. They were forced, as I'm sure you recall, to stop using the "Pilot" name after losing a trademark dispute with a company called Pilot Pens. I had a Palm IIIc (the first one with a colour screen) for years, and must have read hundreds of books on it. As you say, the later models had an SD card slot and hence no effective storage limit. If I recall correctly, I used a book reader called "Peanut Reader", or something like that? I forget the exact name.

Last edited by HarryT; 07-18-2017 at 11:34 AM.
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Old 07-18-2017, 11:34 AM   #35
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I've still got my Palm IIIx as well as its CDROM installation disc and charging cradle. Unfortunately the last time I tried to turn it on, a few months ago, it was completely dead. Even with fresh alkaline batteries it was still dead. Perhaps a new internal backup battery might bring it back, but I haven't checked that. I'm not sure why I kept it all these years, but I did. I also have an older HP organizer that does still work and it ran some proprietary OS that pre-dates the Palm OS. I probably still have them because I threw them into a junk box and forgot about them, and being an electronics pack-rat I kept my junk box.

I don't think I ever read eBooks on the HP organizer, it never worked very well BTW. But I definitely read a lot of eBooks on the Palm IIIx and later models, as well as a couple of Clié models, and a Treo with WM OS. Kindles were very cool until the screens on smartphones and tablets surpassed them. Then I returned to my earlier roots of reading on LCD screens.

And I seem to recall when MR changed its name to MR, or at least changed its logo to a PDA looking device with a wheel. I think they wanted to update the forum to better reflect the mobile devices that were becoming all the rage. I seem to remember a contest to create the new logo. I'm rather fuzzy on the details, so perhaps some of the old-timers from here can enlighten us.
Nice to know, I'm not the only one that has a junk box.
Of course I also have many old kitchen gadgets.
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Old 07-20-2017, 10:51 PM   #36
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Sure, I had a number of the later Palm devices, but they weren't Palm Pilots, of course. They were forced, as I'm sure you recall, to stop using the "Pilot" name after losing a trademark dispute with a company called Pilot Pens. I had a Palm IIIc (the first one with a colour screen) for years, and must have read hundreds of books on it. As you say, the later models had an SD card slot and hence no effective storage limit. If I recall correctly, I used a book reader called "Peanut Reader", or something like that? I forget the exact name.
Didn't Peanut Reader have a proprietary format? I vaguely remember something of the sort. Then again, who really cared about standards at that point.

I used Mobipocket on a Palm III and later a Palm V, before switching to an ipaq. For me the draw was the usual reasons - carrying more than one book and the portability. I also discovered large amounts of user scanned books on Usenet and felt perfectly justified in using that resource...especially for books that I owned physical copies of. After all, it's not like there were ecopies available for sale at the time. (I saw the light after ebooks started to be readily available and deleted the collection.)
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Old 07-21-2017, 04:12 PM   #37
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When I was growing up began reading the old pulp novels from the twenties through the fifties.

The Shadow.
Doc Savage.
The Avenger.
The Spider.
The phantom. On and on.

Reprints were on several imprints, notably Bantam, Pyramid, and Ace.
But as they came out, the publishers didn't ship each title everywhere. Booksellers couldn't even order them.

In the late nineties many of the titles which had originally been published in magazine format had the copyrights lapse, and I was able to get complete collections.

When ereaders came a format shift allowed me to make my collection portable.

Then I got hooked and started spending lots of money.
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Old 07-21-2017, 04:15 PM   #38
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Didn't Peanut Reader have a proprietary format? I vaguely remember something of the sort. Then again, who really cared about standards at that point.

I used Mobipocket on a Palm III and later a Palm V, before switching to an ipaq. For me the draw was the usual reasons - carrying more than one book and the portability. I also discovered large amounts of user scanned books on Usenet and felt perfectly justified in using that resource...especially for books that I owned physical copies of. After all, it's not like there were ecopies available for sale at the time. (I saw the light after ebooks started to be readily available and deleted the collection.)
The books I bought (mostly C.J. Cherryh titles) from peanut were in the format for Palm devices. I format shifted them, but eventually bought cleaner copies from Baen.
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Old 07-21-2017, 09:29 PM   #39
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Old 07-21-2017, 10:15 PM   #40
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Didn't Peanut Reader have a proprietary format? I vaguely remember something of the sort. Then again, who really cared about standards at that point.

I used Mobipocket on a Palm III and later a Palm V, before switching to an ipaq. For me the draw was the usual reasons - carrying more than one book and the portability. I also discovered large amounts of user scanned books on Usenet and felt perfectly justified in using that resource...especially for books that I owned physical copies of. After all, it's not like there were ecopies available for sale at the time. (I saw the light after ebooks started to be readily available and deleted the collection.)
Oh yeah, I remember Peanut reader and the Palm formats, .pdb and .prc. I started with a Franklin ebookman and later picked up a used Palm Pilot. The ebookman had a slightly larger screen than the Palm, but lots more quirks to deal with.

I also remember when Microsoft came out with the .lit format and gave away a book a week for a year to promote the format. I don't remember if those were readable on anything other than a PC.
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Old 07-21-2017, 11:33 PM   #41
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Oh yeah, I remember Peanut reader and the Palm formats, .pdb and .prc. I started with a Franklin ebookman and later picked up a used Palm Pilot. The ebookman had a slightly larger screen than the Palm, but lots more quirks to deal with.

I also remember when Microsoft came out with the .lit format and gave away a book a week for a year to promote the format. I don't remember if those were readable on anything other than a PC.
The Alturek would read lit files.
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Old 07-22-2017, 02:45 AM   #42
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Didn't Peanut Reader have a proprietary format? I vaguely remember something of the sort. Then again, who really cared about standards at that point.
Sure. As did MobiPocket and every other reading app at the time.
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Old 07-22-2017, 01:23 PM   #43
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What was your reason for deciding to read e-books? Did your choice of books dictate the device or did the device dictate your choice of books?
My reasons, in no particular order of importance:
- Font type and size selection
- Consistent 'print' quality with regard to readability
- Huge space saver
- Smaller, lighter. No difference between a 200 or 2000 page book.
- Backup of a library in different places; never lose a book, even if you lose or forget your reader
- A lot cheaper to buy; extremely cheap or even free in case of classics
- No shipment time. Buy, download, and read.
- No wear and tear
- Book can be fixed / changed (cover to my liking, for example)

I had two criteria for selecting a format:
- Had to be possible to un-DRM
- Standard, or at least, a well-known format that can be edited

I chose EPUB, and I've used un-DRM-ed books on a Kindle KPW1 (converting to AZW3) and a Kobo Aura ONE (converting to KEPUB) without problems. I don't care what format an e-reader uses, as long as Calibre (or another prorgram) can convert un-DRM-ed books to it.

Because of the DRM-issue, I've bought all books I wanted, maybe wanted, possibly wanted, and very maybe would like to have somewhere in my life, within the first three years I had my e-reader. (Second reader; bought and sold the first one in 2007-2008 due to lack of books I wanted to read.)

Last edited by Katsunami; 07-22-2017 at 01:26 PM.
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