Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

eBooks and eReaders – There is more than Kindle, you know

When one thinks of “e-books”, one probably thinks of the Kindle (from Amazon). One may also know about Google’s “Books“. Both have received a good amount of press. But there are other options, and today I am going to share a few. Let’s start with the basics:

What is an “e-book”? An electronic book is a text and image-based publication in digital form produced on, published by, and readable on computers or other digital devices.

An e-book can be purchased, downloaded, and used immediately, whereas when one buys (or borrows) a book, one must go to a bookstore or public library during limited hours, or wait for a delivery. The production of e-books does not consume paper and ink.

Where do I get an e-book? eBooks are available online at ‘bookstores’ called “marketplaces”; the two “biggies” being mentioned above. Most big name bookstores’ and publishing houses’ websites offer electronic versions of their titles. And individuals can market their own writings (in ebook format [called “e-publishing”]) on their own websites. (For example, I have been told I should bundle my writings here into an ebook, and sell it…)

Do I need an e-Reader? No. While a dedicated e-Reader can be had for $200 or less, and has certain advantages, it is not required – smart phones, tablets, netbooks/laptops and your home PC can all ‘read’ e-books (but may require an ‘app’, or ‘reader program’).
The trouble with e-readers is they try to lock you into their marketplaces…

Are eBooks expensive? I am not a big ebook guy (yet, anyway) but I have found many titles available free (which I like), and the prices I have looked at seem to me higher than bookstore paperback and lower than bookstore hardcover – in a word, “reasonable”.

Okay, I said I would tell you about some lesser known options.

In e-Readers, the Kindle has many competitors (to get an idea, click here): two worth mentioning are:
* Barnes & Noble’s Nook
* Sony’s eReader
[note:
both of those are ebook “marketplaces” too.]

Lesser-known e-reader apps (and marketplaces):
* Microsoft Reader: Enjoy a personal, portable library

Microsoft Reader is a free, downloadable software application that allows you to read eBooks on Windows-based devices you may already own. Take advantage of a growing marketplace of over 60,000 eBook titles while enjoying the convenience and features of Microsoft Reader.

* Adobe Digital Editions

Adobe® Digital Editions software offers an engaging way to view and manage eBooks and other digital publications. Use it to download and purchase digital content, which can be read both online and offline. Transfer copy-protected eBooks from your personal computer to other computers or devices. Organize your eBooks into a custom library and annotate pages

* Project Gutenberg

Project Gutenberg is the place where you can download over 33,000 free ebooks to read on your PC, iPad, Kindle, Sony Reader, iPhone, Android or other portable device.

We carry high quality ebooks: Our ebooks were previously published by bona fide publishers and digitized by us with the help of thousands of volunteers.

All our ebooks can be freely downloaded: Choose between ePub, Kindle, HTML and simple text formats.

* Your local public library may have ebooks available too – ours does (SF Peninsula).

Ooops. Ran out of time.. have a great day, folks!

Today’s free link: Can you spot a scam? (screenshots)

“A theft of names and email addresses like the recent one from marketing firm Epsilon doesn’t sound that bad but that information is valuable for scammers to use in further attacks, notably in phishing scams. If an attacker knows your name, the companies you deal with and your email, then it can craft some convincing emails that have a much better chance of fooling you.”

Bonus: say, now… maybe here’s an idea….


Bonus bonus:
I’m going international!


Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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April 13, 2011 - Posted by | advice, computers, gadgets, how to, Internet, mobile, Portable Computing, software, tech | , , , , , ,

4 Comments »

  1. And don’t forget that there are stand alone Android tablets (e.g. Cruz R101) that can install Kindle, Nook, Kobe, and PDF readers. Models can be had for less than the cost of the proprietary readers from Kindle, Nook, etc. These also have more features – better web connectivity, color, radio, music, movie, etc., apps are all available or built in to the basic models.

    Like

    Comment by Floyd Johnson | April 13, 2011 | Reply

    • Floyd Johnson, (love your avatar!)
      Most of the full-featured tablets I have looked at recently are (currently) pricier than a stand-alone eReader.. which is only reasonable, considering they do so much more. (Also, eReaders [notably the Nook] are being “rooted” and Android put on.. which gives you a tablet w/o a tablet’s price.) But competition is heating up, and prices are already dropping. I will look at the Cruz, though. Hadn’t seen that particular one – thanks.

      I had hoped I made it clear in the article that one does not need an eReader to read eBooks.. usually, you just install the app.

      Like

      Comment by techpaul | April 13, 2011 | Reply

  2. I have a Sony Reader PRS -600 and I’m absolutely happy with it. And I met one more girl with the same model. I can recommend it to all the book lovers who appreciate mobility. The small thing can be fit in a pocket or purse and you can have thousand of pages with you. It’s lovely.

    Like

    Comment by kindlenookorsony | April 14, 2011 | Reply

    • kindlenookorsony,
      I understand that eReader devices are gaining popularity amongst the Book-of-the-Month Club set too..

      But I don’t think real books (with paper) are going to go away anytime real soon.. too many people insist on them yet. But I know of several magazines that have gone “e-zine only”. Newspapers’ days appear numbered as well.

      Like

      Comment by techpaul | April 14, 2011 | Reply


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