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E-books Versus Books


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I have enjoyed reading books for years now. I enjoy unwrapping books on Christmas or on my birthday. Books are the best presents a person can get. Many people have suggested that I should get a Kindle or other E-reader. I always tell them that although Kindles are nice, I enjoy having a book in my hands because of the difference in turning the pages, the smell that old books acquire, and the fact that a book does not require charging in order for it to be read.

 

First, there is a difference in turning the pages. Turning the pages on a Kindle requires pressing buttons. This changes the expression, “that book was a real page turner” to “that book was a real button presser.” The only way this expression would not change would be if people continued to use books. I prefer books because I enjoy manually turning the pages and occasionally having trouble because two pages are stuck together. This is an important part of the “reading” experience for me.

 

Second, there is a difference in smell. Kindles are electronic, so they do not really have any type of real smell to them. The only smell Kindles have is an electronic smell that does not smell good. Books on the other hand, acquire an “old book smell” as they age. I enjoy the smell because it reminds me of the library, which I love. Smelling the “old book smell” comforts me.

 

Finally, there is a difference in charging the device. Kindles have to be charged on a regular basis. If the power goes out and the Kindle’s battery dies, then it is useless. The Kindle’s battery would probably die at the climax of the book. I would hate to have to wait for the Kindle to charge before I could continue reading the story and if it was thundering I would probably go insane because I would not be able to charge the Kindle. Books do not have to be charged because they do not need any type of electricity to run them. Simply open the book and start reading. This means a book can be read rain or shine without having to worry about the battery dying.

 

Groucho Marx once said, “Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside a dog, it is too dark to read.” He also said, “I find television very educational; every time a television is turned on, I go into another room and read a book.” Books, not Kindles, are man’s best friend; therefore, books are my best friend.

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  • 1 month later...

I pretty much love reading books. And I actually prefer books rather than ebooks because I love turning the pages and smelling the paper. Plus, it gets more exciting while reading and turning the pages.

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I, of course love books. I'm not using the verb 'prefer' because for me there is no choise to be made. Technology is nice and all, but there are some things that just can't be replaced, mostly on an emotional level. Plus, I, sometimes spend hours reading a book, I've finished whole books in a single day... that's something I could never do with an ebook cause it would hurt my eyes :P

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I rarely read fiction books these days - textbooks and reference manuals is more my forte due to work and personal development.

 

I'm torn between the two. I like eBooks because they're much less bulky, but it's harder to make annotations and notes. Books you can scribble and highlight on the page.

 

On a slightly related note - at the school I work at we've phased out all non-fiction books in our library. Also have eBook versions of some fiction titles from Wheelers ePlatform. But usage by students has been dismal. It's a poor reading experience. The students much prefer the physical copies and often reserve them early.

 

Oh and the graphic novels and manga section is pretty popular too ;)

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I love reading books. I usually have multiple books to read, and I just bought the Game Of Thrones book collection, but I rarely use ebooks. For manga I'm going to start buying some, I usually read them online.

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  • 1 month later...
if power goes out i can still read at night, with a real book i can't.

 

I just use a flashlight if the power goes out at night. :P

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  • 11 months later...

Reading lately is mostly tech, I feel like. And while that is convenient at times, I actually prefer a nice book. Like, even with manga, I prefer to have the manga actually in my hands. I love the feeling of owning an actual copy of something that's visibly in front of me... Something I can touch, see and smell. Like, I actually really love buying books used over new. I think there's something interesting about holding a book someone else has held before, and if the pages are a little worn, that is just fine with me. Like breaking in a new pair of jeans or shoes. xD

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  • 2 months later...

as my main income im a driver so I generally get books on cd (and I have a heap of them) or media to play in the vehicle whilst im doing long distance work and am out of radio range other than that I haven't actually read a book in quite a while

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as my main income im a driver so I generally get books on cd (and I have a heap of them) or media to play in the vehicle whilst im doing long distance work and am out of radio range other than that I haven't actually read a book in quite a while

So like audio books then yeah? I had never listened to one before until we were driving to another province (which is a 20 hour drive). I really liked it! I never thought I could stay focused enough for one lol

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  • 4 months later...

I prefer ebooks.

 

As nice as print books may be, space is kind of limited here and I can read ebooks anywhere without worrying about the weight.

, and, other than anime and manga, books are the only other things I have up on Patreon that people can request me to review.

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Whenever I pick up an ebook, it almost always goes unfinished and eventually forgotten I'm sad to say. While I own an e-ink Kindle, I've never used it with any degree of regularity and often ends up out of sight and out of mind. Having an actual book laying about my apartment tends to help get me through things.

 

Beyond that, I enjoy being able to collect things and have them up on shelves and the like. Can't really do that with digital copies, sadly.

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Whenever I pick up an ebook, it almost always goes unfinished and eventually forgotten I'm sad to say. While I own an e-ink Kindle, I've never used it with any degree of regularity and often ends up out of sight and out of mind. Having an actual book laying about my apartment tends to help get me through things.

 

Beyond that, I enjoy being able to collect things and have them up on shelves and the like. Can't really do that with digital copies, sadly.

 

How you do with the space issue? My own bookshelf has almost no room at all.

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How you do with the space issue? My own bookshelf has almost no room at all.

 

There are two things working in my favor with regards to that.

 

First thing is the fact that I've got a fair bit of space in my apartment, and have been planning on buying some new bookshelves for the combined purpose of holding books and showing off various bits of goofy merchandise that I've collected over the years. Beyond that, the sad truth of the matter is that I just don't go through books at the same voracious pace that folks more dedicated than myself tend to - especially during the last few years, during which my lifestyle has been shifting steadily... as a result, I simply haven't been reading hardly at all.

 

Thankfully things should be calming down a bit in the next month or so... I'll have a fair bit of stuff to catch up on, to say the least.

 

...speaking of, a general book recommendation thread would be a nice thing to have around here. :o

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There are two things working in my favor with regards to that.

 

First thing is the fact that I've got a fair bit of space in my apartment, and have been planning on buying some new bookshelves for the combined purpose of holding books and showing off various bits of goofy merchandise that I've collected over the years. Beyond that, the sad truth of the matter is that I just don't go through books at the same voracious pace that folks more dedicated than myself tend to - especially during the last few years, during which my lifestyle has been shifting steadily... as a result, I simply haven't been reading hardly at all.

 

Thankfully things should be calming down a bit in the next month or so... I'll have a fair bit of stuff to catch up on, to say the least.

 

...speaking of, a general book recommendation thread would be a nice thing to have around here. :o

All I have to say is that you are fairly lucky then.

 

I do not have the money to spend on more bookshelves.

 

As for general book recommendations, you could start a thread yourself if you wanted.

 

Also, other than reviewing manga and anime, the former of which I have been doing more often, I have been reviewing so-called normal books, and most of the patrons I have on Patreon are subscribed to the tier that allows them to request me to review a book or manga of their choice, so you can see what I have talked about there.

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  • 2 years later...

I've been an avid book reader for, well, since even before personal computers or the 'Net.  (Yes, there was such a time.  It was boring. :D )  I've got - possibly literally - tons of books around and basically no space for more.  So it looks like I'm finally/again getting an e-book reader. 

I've actually been looking for quite a while, and even tested a device or two in the past, but things like the Kindle just didn't do it for me, and that's obviously the mainstream choice.  I did like the Kindle's screen, but Amazon's DRM policy and format lock-in made a Kindle a poor choice.  Besides the digital restrictions nonsense and the Kindle's proprietary format I have an existing e-library of mostly PDFs.  This is a format that isn't supported natively on the Kindle and that Amazon did/does an extremely poor job of converting.  Basically a non-starter as far as I'm concerned.  Readers from Sony and others had similar problems and didn't even have a content library backing them like Amazon provides for the Kindle.

I finally settled on an Onyx Boox Note Pro for my current e-reader experiment.  It uses the same type of e-ink display as the Kindle and the newest 10.3" version is big enough that I can read PDF formatted for large textbooks and journal-sized publications without problems.  The built-in reader handles my PDF, plus EPUB, MOBI, RTF, and some other formats natively.  This device also seems to be the only one with a screen that size that has a "frontlight".  It even runs Android - of an ancient 6.0 vintage to be sure, but beggars can't be choosers and it does at least give access to the Play store if I don't like the built-in apps.  This includes the Kindle app, if I want to go that direction after all.

The deciding factor was that the Note line has a nice drawing/sketch/notepad function built into the display.  The sketch pad (basically a WACOM + stylus) is integrated with the reader so you can annotate, highlight, or otherwise doodle in the margins of e-books just like you can in dead-tree versions.  Should be useful for textbooks or those journals.  Of course the device also lets you make your own notebooks as well so maybe I'll even be able to get rid of my old-school paper composition book that I'm always carrying around.  We'll see.

My Boox is ordered but not delivered yet.  Probably not this weekend, but likely sometime next week.  I guess I'll have a new toy to play with next weekend.  :)  Hope this works this time!

Edited by efaardvark
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A couple of friends gave me one of those but for some reason I don't really use it. Can't put my finger on it but I find myself losing attention faster when using the ereader compared to actual paper. But as many have said here already, those ereaders can't be beat when it comes to storing large amounts of texts on them. So generally I prefer to have both an electronic and a non-electronic version. Unfortunately almost no one sells both for one price

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I do like the paper books, and I'm certainly not going to be getting rid of my library of such any time soon.  That said, electron versions certainly have their useful features.  Obviously there's the space advantage.  64GB is common even on phones these days, and 64GB on an e-reader is a LOT of text.. more than an unassisted human could read in a lifetime.  Most of my ebooks are well under 2MB in size, so 64GB would be over 32,000 books.  At one book a day, 365.25 days a year that's like 90 years of reading!  Even a graphics-intensive, "full-sized" magazine or journal is around 50MB in e-form.  At that rate over a century of a monthly publication would fit in 64GB.   And my laptop has 10x that.  (And my NAS at home more than 10x that!)   

There's still other advantages as well though.  Of course, ordering and delivery is also extremely fast and convenient.  As is searching on content.  Another advantage around here is an app called Overdrive that allows one to check out ebooks from the public library online.  Yet another would be Baen books' online store that offers occasional "eARCs", or electronic advanced reader copies.  If you're a big fan of a certain author or series then you would probably love to have access to the raw text of the next installment straight from the author's word processor (typos and everything).  That's basically what an ARC is.  That sort of thing is not economical to do in paper, but pretty easy electronically.

 

Don't get me started on e-pricing!  Seriously, with hard drive space and bandwidth costs as low as they are prices of the electronic versions of things ought to be single-digit percentages of the physical forms.  There is simply no excuse for charging anywhere near the same price when the profit margins are 10x as high for an ebook compared to the paper versions.  I mean, marginal costs approach zero for the electronic versions.  It costs basically the same for a company to sell 100 copies of an ebook as to sell 100 thousand.  Quite a bit different than printing, warehousing, shipping, etc. of traditional paper versions.  If you buy a hard-copy of a book then you ought to get the e-version basically for free.  Some nominal cost that covers server electricity and maintenance for the electronic version would be acceptable, but certainly not the full price of the physical version!  But of course as you say, usually you don't get both electronic and print versions.  In fact, if you want both versions then you usually have to pay the same price twice!  That's ludicrous!  I have the same issues with other digital content such as music or videos. 

Even so I'd be ok with it if the "extra" money were actually going to the authors/artists.  Unfortunately, 99 times out of 100 it isn't.  E-pricing is a total rip-off as far as I'm concerned.. for both the artists and the consumers.  :veryangry:

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I appreciate ebooks for the convenience of essentially having a library at your fingertips, and being able to read easily in the dark, but there is just something about the feeling of holding a real book that relaxes me.

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I prefer books over e-books.  Nothing like the smell of a book and just having it in your hands.  I like to be able to keep something original versus technology.  I know years from now, we may not have actual books.  It will be a rarity.

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Ebooks seem like they are ok if you don't have a lot of room in your apartment. And you don't want a lot of books everywhere. Though I feel like ebooks aren't really worth anything. You can collect rare books and save them, and over years they will be worth a lot of money. I've seen books at my book store that are rare worth around $300-$400  

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  • 2 weeks later...

My Boox reader was delivered a couple days ago.  Yay!  Still early but first impressions are favorable.  Transferring over my existing ebook library was quick and simple using USB(-C) 3.0.  Just plugged it in and a flash drive named "NotePro" appeared on my linux desktop.  Drag-and-dropped my "books" folder from my desktop over to the "books" folder on the device and done.  So far I haven't found anything it won't read in my limited testing.  Lots of cropping, sizing, spacing, paging, and etc. options on the reader too.  Even my full-sized magazine/journal and electronics specs-sheet PDFs are readable without more than trivial adjustments.  The notepad works well with the stylus.  I'm no artist and I don't intend to use it for anything beyond hand-written notes and simple diagrams but for that much it appears to be more than adequate.  I wish the version of Android was more recent but I can work with 6.0.  Hopefully it will be updated at some point.  Battery life is marginal if I try to use the device as a typical android tablet, but if I shut down the background apps, wifi, bluetooth, etc, and use it as designed solely as a book reader then it looks like it'll last for several days at least.  Maybe even a week or two if I also shut off the LED "frontlight" and do things the "old fashioned" way with sunlight and/or properly-placed reading lamps.  Weight is noticeable, but actually lighter than I was expecting from a device with a 10.3" display.  Certainly less than a similarly-sized book would be!  I don't think it'll be a problem.

To be honest I haven't had much time to do more than charge the batteries and familiarize myself with the basic functions of the device so far.  I did take it to work with me yesterday and today I spent some time today going through my ebook vendor resources to see what the current status of things ebook is.  Unfortunately a lot of my old resources like fictionwise are no more, but places like Bain are still around and very similar.  I grabbed a Humble bundle that looked interesting.  (They do ebooks as well as games, some of them even DRM-free.)  One of the bundled titles is Hambly's, "The Ladies of Mandrigyn", which I remember reading in paper and am re-reading on the Boox this evening to compare.

tl;dr.. So far, so good.

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