E-readers forum

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E-Books as a Research/Notetaking tool.

by StCerque / November 28, 2011 11:15 AM PST

Does anyone out there know the answer to my questions?

The one thing that seems absent from all the
reviews, yours (C-Net) and every other one I've looked at is a lack of functionality of any e reader as a research and writing tool.

I'm aware that some have note taking capabilities which make them potentially
superior if you can mark/highlight things you want to come back to. Even more
useful is an ability to transfer either the text as annotated, the book, or
sections of text to a PC for incorporation into a document. This could be a
real time-saver with respect to quotes and also saving references (foot notes).

Do any of the e-readers allow this, at least in a fairly quick and
convenient form?

One thing I have noticed on newspaper subscriptions is that they don't allow
you to do that - you have to e-mail an article to yourself and then cut and
paste the information you want to save. It actually is easier to save
information from their "free" online subscriptions. Maybe this is why
so many are struggling financially?!!

The other thing missing from reviews seems to be book accessibility. Does it
make a difference which one you have as to 1) number of books accessible, 2)
type/publishers of books from whom you can access books, and 3) accessibility of books and documents beyond copyright such as The Federalist Papers?

I'm not a techie but it doesn't seem like it would be all that complicated to
have a device such as I described. Is there such capability presently either in
any of the e-readers or perhaps software for PCs?

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All Answers

Best Answer chosen by StCerque

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This has been discussed before.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 28, 2011 11:24 AM PST

Tablets are currently devices for consumption of content. Those that create content currently have solutions in PC, laptops, Apples, etc.

There are some that miss this point entirely (consumption vs. creation.)

Now that we know what the tablets are about, let's go back to our PC or Apple and can we get the research and such done there?

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E-Readers as a Research Tool
by StCerque / November 29, 2011 7:49 AM PST

I'm not sure this really answers my questions.

First, if the issue has been discussed before it would be nice to know where by reference, link, etc.

Definition of terminology would be helpful. By "consumption" I assume that means reading and by "creation" I assume that means writing. I am under the impression that an E reader is something other than a tablet. Perhaps it is a subspecie of a tablet? The virtue of a reader would seem to be 1) it is light weight and as transportable as a book and 2) it presents its information in a form that resembles a page and thus is easy on the eyes by eliminating the glare. I don't know about others but I've never found reading on a computer screen either comfortable or sustainable for lengthier items.

I fully understand that an e-reader is generally not useful for "creation" or writing since they don't come with a regular keyboard or voice recognition software such that you can make extensive notes or commentary. But I understand they do have note-taking capacity similar to writing marginalia. The potential advantages would seem to be 1) quicker access to one's notes and 2) the ability to transfer both the portion of text and one's notes to a creation or writing device such as a PC. My question is: do they really do that and if so which models are the best?

I know that one can do this by using Kindle for PC but that has the serious disadvantage of having to sit at a computer to read.

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As a researcher.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 29, 2011 8:20 AM PST

And since folk could demand I copy every discussion with the same dialog, I'm going to dismiss such requests. If you want to research this, then you can do that.

For now, you seem to be aware of the limitations. And those limitations are harsher and more imposing than on your PC/Apple today. If you feel this is incorrect then what stopped you from buying the ereader?

Here I have the Kindle, many Android tablets and none are good at what you seem to want to do. I can't see any good reason to use such things as the content consumption is BURNED INTO the system. I'm unsure how much clearer I can put this.

There were a few members that thought the content was open for copy/paste but that depends on the reader PLUS the limitations of the content. Some is locked down to the point of read only on the screen without any way to get it except to go get a camera.

From what I think you want to do, you don't want any ereader or current tablet.

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Sorry if that sounded harsh.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 29, 2011 8:28 AM PST
In reply to: As a researcher.

The discussion has been done before. Since I own such things I hope I can shine a light on this, even if some don't like what we see.

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