Paper versus e-Reader

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Re: Paper versus e-Reader

Post by jebmke » Mon Jul 22, 2013 10:27 am

frugaltype wrote:as does the local humane society.
I suppose if the dog can eat your homework he can eat your paperbacks just as well. :P
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Re: Paper versus e-Reader

Post by telemark » Mon Jul 22, 2013 11:26 am

I have to wonder how many books are so good that people will read them 26 times or more. Three Men in a Boat, sure, but you can get that from Gutenberg :)

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Re: Paper versus e-Reader

Post by Statch » Mon Jul 22, 2013 2:11 pm

Goodwill takes used books. I took a bunch of books there during the last move when I realized I'm too old to be packing/unpacking all these books. I'm an ebook convert from several years back. I love, love, love my Kindle Paperwhite. (I thought I'd never give up my Kindle Keyboard, but the backlit eink of the Paperwhite has definitely sold me. I love being able to read in bed without bothering my husband, and I have bad eyes so being able to use light and increase the fonts means that I can still read as much as I used to.)

I don't need a paper copy of fiction, but I would really like to be able to buy a paper copy of nonfiction, particularly cookbooks, and get the ebook too. One thing I love about ebooks is being able to read my book on whatever device I'm using wherever I am. I can start it at home on the Kindle, then pull out my phone and read a few pages while I'm waiting in line at the story, then get home and pick up on the Kindle exactly where I left off on the phone. That's so amazing. But I need a paper copy of cookbooks in the kitchen (some people don't but I do -- I'm messy!).

I'm surprised no one mentioned the Calibre software (or if they did, I missed it). It's free to download (, but it was created and is maintained by a great guy named Kovid Goyal and a group of volunteers, so donations are definitely appreciated. (I'm just a happy user - no other connection.) It's wonderful for organizing your ebook library. You can use tags, download/edit metadata, rate your books, and sort by author/title/tags/rating, etc. You can store many different formats, and it allows you to convert from format to format. (It can store your DRM'ed ebooks but can't view them or convert them to another format, though you can google 'calibre plugins' for other options). The advantage of being able to store even the DRM'ed books is that Calibre has much more robust organizational tools than any of the online stores, and it's a backup copy in case your store goes down. Calibre can also interface with most of the standard ebook devices. It can be a little complex; the forum has a great Calibre forum (and is a fun site for ebook readers in general).

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Re: Paper versus e-Reader

Post by lightheir » Mon Jul 22, 2013 11:20 pm

frugaltype wrote:
jebmke wrote:
bUU wrote:Libraries are increasingly declining donations of old paperbacks. There is a cost associated with storing them and such. Around here, a clearer path is donating to religious institutions for fairs/bazaars/sales and such. Our church has noted, especially, a dearth of donations in the last two years, presumably stemming from the transition of many people to e-readers, so whereas five years ago we would have had some standards on donations in terms of condition and such, just to keep the donations within the realm of what we could legitimately present for sale during our fall fair, now we'll take anything since we've actually had to reduce the footprint of your book sale area due to how much fewer books we have to sell.
Our library still takes them. But I also donate stacks of paperbacks to our local Senior Center.
Our local libraries take them, as does the local humane society. They sell them for fifty cents. The library has a large bookshelf at the entrance stocked with these, and periodically has a fill a grocery bag with books for $1 total sale. Volunteers stock the shelf and run the sale.

Some doctors' offices have a free book section in their waiting room.

Don't forget that paperbacks can go into paper recycling free.
Our local libraries (all of them) did not want any of the mountain of my father in-law's books. Probably because despite their high intellectual content, they're older books and wouldn't sell as well in a sale.

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Re: Paper versus e-Reader

Post by nisiprius » Tue Jul 23, 2013 4:06 pm

(Shrug) Well, I'd kinda like to read Stephen King's new novel, Joyland, but I guess if I want to do that, either have to put a hold at the library on a paper copy, or tool out to Barnes & Noble and shell out seven or eight bucks. It's weird how he's done a complete 180 on that, given that just a few years ago he he issued a couple of eBook-only titles, but I assume he has his reasons. It's a little bit startling to have my assumption--that all new books will be available in both print and eBook formats--challenged.
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Re: Paper versus e-Reader

Post by bUU » Tue Jul 23, 2013 4:47 pm

Word on the street is that The Plant was considered a failed experiment. I bet it soured King to e-publishing, in general. Like other books, I assume it'll eventually be released electronically. It's not unheard of for the publication of the e-book to be months after first publication. It recently happened with A Memory of Light.

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Re: Paper versus e-Reader

Post by Sam314159 » Thu Jul 25, 2013 6:53 pm

Don't knock the ebooks until you try them. I was a diehard who said for years I preferred paper books ... Until I really gave ebooks an honest try. Now I prefer the ebooks. I carry my phone on my pocket, and so always have 2-3 books with me. The library systems are starting to have good selections of ebooks, which I can check out without leaving my couch. I also like that I can read in bed without disturbing wife, because of the "black light" function on ipad.

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Re: Paper versus e-Reader

Post by TallBoy29er » Thu Jul 25, 2013 7:01 pm

if you fly a good bit, paper is nice b/c you can use it during takeoff/ascent/descent.

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Re: Paper versus e-Reader

Post by Caduceus » Fri Jul 26, 2013 11:27 pm

I think for now the e-book and physical book markets are still a little differentiated. Reading novels or most kinds of non-fiction on an e-reader is actually pretty awesome. I had been skeptical and am a convert. The Kindle for instance is lighter and less clumsy than a paperback, and so much more portable, plus I won't ever lose the book. For me the tough part comes from the additional cost (e.g. $8 to own the book outright in digital format, or $4 to buy it used from Amazon marketplace and then dispose of it, because I don't want to store books as much as possible.)

But for reference books, study guides, travel guides, cookbooks, exercise books, anything where size matters, I suspect a lot of people still buy the physical versions. When e-readers begin to incorporate more intuitive indexing schemes, maybe that will change. But it's currently very inconvenient to flip back and forth on an e-reader and I don't like looking at graphs or tables on an e-reader either. Also, I find it much easier to skim for information on a book. I can speed-read about 5 times as fast with a paperback compared to digital ... i don't know why this is the case but I suspect it has to do with the larger layout (more words per sentence given the same font size) and also the ability to make a "map" of the information (I roughly know where information is in an actual book but I cannot keep track of "where" something is in a digital format quite as well!)

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Re: Paper versus e-Reader

Post by Mudpuppy » Sat Jul 27, 2013 2:13 am

TallBoy29er wrote:if you fly a good bit, paper is nice b/c you can use it during takeoff/ascent/descent.
But that's only about 10 minutes. One should be able to occupy ones own mind for 10 minutes without external stimuli. It's also the most dangerous part of the flight, so being aware of one's surroundings rather than buried in a book might be a good idea.

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Re: Paper versus e-Reader

Post by Sidney » Sat Jul 27, 2013 7:32 am

Mudpuppy wrote:
TallBoy29er wrote:if you fly a good bit, paper is nice b/c you can use it during takeoff/ascent/descent.
But that's only about 10 minutes. One should be able to occupy ones own mind for 10 minutes without external stimuli. It's also the most dangerous part of the flight, so being aware of one's surroundings rather than buried in a book might be a good idea.
My experience has been that the no-gadgets time starts about when the plane gets pushed back from the gate and extends until just after take-off. Often, with long queues to take off, this can be a long time. I usually bring a magazine or two to bridge the gap. I can leave them behind when finished so they aren't extra "baggage" when I travel.
I always wanted to be a procrastinator.

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