The Sword and Laser discussion

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Reading printed editions vs digital

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message 1: by Jason (new)

Jason Werner | 29 comments I wanted to take a break from kindle and phone reading to feel paper and weight in my hands. I picked up John Dies at the End from the library, I'm 10 pages in and I can't get comfortable. The paperback wants to be closed, the type is too small, I can't hold it or prop it so my hands and arms don't get tired. I thought maybe its just this book and tried a few more including some hardcovers. Eventually I just returned to my kindle, SWEET SWEET RELIEF! Large type, propped so i can just tap the side to turn the page while lying in bed. I think this digital life has ruined me.


message 2: by Silvana (new)

Silvana (silvaubrey) | 992 comments I once tapped the page of my paperback to go to the next page 🤣 A few times I also got frustrated when I spilled food/coffee on my dead trees. And when I can't jam it in my fully loaded bags. Or when the lighting's not too good.

Eh. I stick with Kindle for now, except for some coffee tables/illustrated books.


message 3: by DJay (new)

DJay (DJDJay) | 12 comments Tbh, the only reason I have a kindle is because I have no room for the books in my house. My kindle library is about 2k+, not to mention things I have from smashwords, kobo, and other places. Believe me when I say, if I had the room. I’d have them all physically. But I’m not disappointed with having a kindle and have come to enjoy having one immensely.


message 4: by Leesa (new)

Leesa (leesalogic) | 528 comments I can't read print very well. My eyes are too old!


message 5: by Steven (new)

Steven Leiva | 85 comments Speaking of which...I just recently reposted a blog of mine from 2010 addressing this very issue, "A Book By Any Other Cover: on E-books and "Real" Books."

http://emotionalrationalist.blogspot...


message 6: by Phillip (new)

Phillip Murrell | 81 comments I prefer paperback for my tried and true series, but mostly I read on Kindle because of cost and convenience. I too once tried to get the definition by tapping my paperback. The conditioning is fierce and effective.


message 7: by HeyT (new)

HeyT | 22 comments I kind of prefer reading on paper but I still do a lot of reading on eReaders because of the ease of obtaining titles and not having to worry about where they are going to fit on my shelf.


message 8: by Phil (new)

Phil | 1023 comments The kindle is convenient and books tend to be cheaper on it and I'm also in the "ran out of shelves" group but I like the feel of physical books and I like to be able to lend out books to other people so it's a toss up for me.
I tend to buy paper books by favorite authors and e-books for S+L picks and "kindle daily deals".


message 9: by John (Taloni) (new)

John (Taloni) Taloni (JohnTaloni) | 2618 comments I can not reread my copy of "Wizard of the Pigeons" printed in squinto-type on paperback. Was not a problem in my 20s/30s. Definitely Kindle for anything but items available in larger print hardcover. Read "Skin Game" that way, but otherwise overwhelmingly prefer Kindle.


message 10: by Paul (new)

Paul  Perry (Pezski) | 446 comments I had been reading fairly evenly between by kindle and paper, but lost my glasses and it took a few weeks to sort ( i needed a new eye test & prescription ) so I've been exclusively electronic since then. Generally I do find the kindle better in bed partly as it doesn't require glasses, and in the bath ( inside a ziplock bag ) but I do still like the physicality of actual books.


message 11: by KevBayer (new)

KevBayer (SporadicReviews) | 513 comments I prefer my Kindle Paperwhite because I can read at night in my dark bedroom without a light on that would disturb my wife's sleep. That's usually when I'm reading - at night before I go to bed.

If I were reading any other time, where light was available, I'd be as happy to read dead tree books as ebooks.


message 12: by Rick (last edited Dec 27, 2018 07:55AM) (new)

Rick | 2193 comments I read electronically (iPad mini) exclusively now. Some of it are the issues you raise (books trying to close, etc) but a lot of it is that I can adjust the font to my liking, make it a little bigger or smaller depending on what I want and I can do things that simply aren't possible on paper. What's that word? Highlight and define! Try doing that with a paper copy.

For example, reading Kadrey's Sandman Slim, if you highlight and look up many of the supernatural creatures' names you'll find that they're based on actual mythological or religious things which adds depth.

I like reading on iOS too because if I don't have my Mini with me I can read a bit on the iPhone.


message 13: by John (Taloni) (new)

John (Taloni) Taloni (JohnTaloni) | 2618 comments ^FWIW my iPad Mini's Kindle app synchronizes just fine with my Samsung phone's Kindle app.


message 14: by Tassie Dave, S&L Historian (last edited Dec 24, 2018 12:49AM) (new)

Tassie Dave | 2338 comments Mod
Like a lot of you, I prefer reading Kindle boos (on my iPad) because I can adjust the size of the font.

I have hundreds of books that I, either, can't read because the font size is too small, or it is very straining.

Also books are MUCH cheaper electronically for me. eBooks that cost $10 can cost me up to $30 to buy as a dead-tree version, if I can even buy it here locally.


message 15: by Tom (new)

Tom Wood (tom_wood) | 25 comments Kindle all the way for fiction because I can carry my library in my pocket. I particularly like the syncing between the e-reader, phone app and PC app. For some 'how-to' books about software, the physical book is easier to use because of all the graphics.


message 16: by Jason (new)

Jason Werner | 29 comments I agree that graphics don’t translate well to black and white e-ink. I tried reading some comics, even black and white ones like the walking dead, and I didn’t like the experience or the size of the screen. Love reading comics on my iPad though. My wish is that color e-ink sees more development.


message 17: by Tassie Dave, S&L Historian (new)

Tassie Dave | 2338 comments Mod
Jason wrote: "My wish is that color e-ink sees more development. "

Agreed. I'd love a Kindle that could handle graphics and colour as well as a printed book. I'd also like to see an e-ink kindle that has a decent sized screen.

An iPad is great, but they don't work well when read outside in sunlight.


message 18: by Seth (new)

Seth | 5 comments As an inveterate library patron cost isn't an issue, so I am paper all the way. I've tried on my phone, and I've tried a borrowed Kindle, and I never felt immersed in the same way.


message 19: by Maclurker (new)

Maclurker | 84 comments I think I prefer paper since I get most books from the library. But when I travel, it’s Kindle app on a iPad


message 20: by Jacqueline (new)

Jacqueline | 7 comments I prefer real books. I have around 2000 on my iPad and do read them with iBooks but I can’t read any more than 2 in a row. Reading from any sort of screen exhausts me thanks to bad eyes and assorted health problems. Normal books I can just keep reading forever.


message 21: by Trike (last edited Dec 24, 2018 04:25AM) (new)

Trike | 4913 comments I just want to say two things about the OP:

1) same

and

2) hashtag oldtimers


message 22: by Dara (new)

Dara (cmdrdara) | 2253 comments I still do both and find myself going back to paper more and more. I remember more when I read paper books versus kindle but I do love to convenience, ease, and customizable options of my paperwhite.


message 23: by Silvana (new)

Silvana (silvaubrey) | 992 comments Any Kindle users missing the smell of books? It seems to be a thing among hard core physical book readers.


message 24: by Tom (last edited Dec 24, 2018 06:42AM) (new)

Tom Wood (tom_wood) | 25 comments Spray it on your Kindle!
spray cans book scents


message 25: by Tassie Dave, S&L Historian (new)

Tassie Dave | 2338 comments Mod
I read the 4th one as 'eww, you have cats' ;-)

Some books smell nice. Old books when you live in a cold damp environment, not so much :-?


message 26: by Silvana (new)

Silvana (silvaubrey) | 992 comments Tassie Dave wrote: "I read the 4th one as 'eww, you have cats' ;-)

Some books smell nice. Old books when you live in a cold damp environment, not so much :-?"


Hot-damp-environment books are not so nice smelling either.

Tom wrote: "Spray it on your Kindle!
"


I know about book scent but did not know there's BACON scent.

Why.


message 27: by Jason (new)

Jason Werner | 29 comments My kids laugh at me when I open a new book for them, jam my nose right up in there and take a big coke line of new book smell. They’ll understand someday 😄


message 28: by John (Taloni) (new)

John (Taloni) Taloni (JohnTaloni) | 2618 comments Could have used those for a book I had about working on the railroad! "Eau de doo da day."


message 29: by Silvana (last edited Dec 24, 2018 08:24AM) (new)

Silvana (silvaubrey) | 992 comments The cat one. Is that cat smell? Or to stop cats from biting the device/books?
My cat likes biting my Kindle so I could not read and snuggle with her at the same time.


message 30: by Gary (new)

Gary Gillen | 37 comments I get most of my books from the library. It's free. I read about half paper and half of them on the Kindle. Free Tor.com e-books and Amazon Prime monthly reads too. I like the paper better. Easier to get to the maps and glossaries of those big fantasy books. I know the reality though. My print books will end up next to my vinyl record collection soon. It will be all digital in the future.


message 31: by David (new)

David | 41 comments I am an electronic book reader as well not Kindle (don't like proprietary formats) I used to use the Nook I had a couple now I use a Kobo. I started because of space I remember when I moved and everyone complained because the boxes of books were heavy. Now I love the convenience I have hundreds of book on my reader I can't remember the last time I went to the library I used to go every 2 weeks. The books are just as immersive the only paper books I buy now are technical.


message 32: by Robert (new)

Robert Lee (harlock415) | 154 comments Since I read multiple books around the same time, the kindle is more convenient. Also I used to have thousands of physical books which I did not have the room for. I also have a Kindle Fire which is good for my graphic novels. But comics and graphic novels really can't compare to physical.


message 33: by Mathew (new)

Mathew (Kovac) | 1 comments I mostly read my books on Kindle now but on occasion I pick up a physical copy of a book where I have a good expectation that it will be good enough that I will want to share it with others (I'm in the wrong region for kindle sharing).

However the last physical book I went with was The way of kings which turned out to be a mistake because the book is just so thick.

The thick spine just ends up being an annoyance when holding the book and trying to read the words near the middle of the book.


message 34: by Iain (new)

Iain Bertram (Iain_Bertram) | 605 comments I read both. I read on my iPad and paper books. I find paper books easier to focus on and find I am stretching to read the iPad screen (I think need new glasses though) ....

Textbooks are great on screen (I do not want to carry a 1000 page physics text just to write lectures ever again)


message 35: by Aaron (last edited Dec 25, 2018 02:27AM) (new)

Aaron | 219 comments I finally accepted ereaders a while back when I took a trip to Europe and knew I couldn't carry enough books for the 30-hour transit each way. It is convenient to have thousands of books available for whatever reading mood I happen to be in. Also, my nook fits my satchel better than most books.

Now, I tend to read from overdrive and buy the physical books that I particularly enjoy (or from specific authors). I still have a large enough to-read pile that I can read paper at home and e-ink when out.

Jason wrote: "My wish is that color e-ink sees more development."

A new color e-ink display was released this year. Now we just have to wait for a manufacturer to decide that there is enough of a market to use it.


message 36: by corkhead (new)

corkhead | 8 comments I'm another eReader convert - I use Kindle almost exclusively for borrowing (I *love* being able to return books through the eReader now) and Kobo for everything else that isn't graphic-heavy or a PDF (an eReading nightmare). I occasionally read physical when I want to borrow a title my library doesn't own in an electronic format.

I find the eReader experience superior in all of the ways already stated, but I'm still a sucker for beautiful physical books and I end up hoarding titles from favorite authors and never reading the physical version (I'm so sorry, preciouses).


message 37: by Silvana (new)

Silvana (silvaubrey) | 992 comments corkhead wrote: "I'm another eReader convert - I use Kindle almost exclusively for borrowing (I *love* being able to return books through the eReader now) and Kobo for everything else that isn't graphic-heavy or a ..."

you can convert PDF into a more readable version in Kindle just by sending the document via email.
Instruction: http://www.amazon.com/gp/sendtokindl...


message 38: by Sheila Jean (new)

Sheila Jean | 112 comments I tend to read whatever format is available to me. Most of my books come from the library and I'll request ebooks if available. If something I want to read is available physically in the library I'll read that instead. Sometime I'll request both versions and often the physical books are available first.

Ultimately, the version doesn't matter, but for travel the Nook I have is nice cuz I can bring more books in less space. I'll still bring a combersome (from packing standpoint) hardback with me if it's what I'm currently reading, so not a strong preference.


message 39: by David (new)

David Newhall | 35 comments Being able to adjust the font size is critical for me. I read almost everything on my Kindle. Weirdly, I find printed books necessary for travel planning.

I work in a library and have found many younger (teens and twenties) readers have a very strong preference for printed books as recreational reading.


message 40: by Shad (new)

Shad (splante) | 293 comments The convenience of having my Kindle with me lets me read more than with just printed books. I will still read some print books, but usually just before bed, which means a print copy can take a while to get through.


message 41: by Lance Roberts (new)

Lance Roberts | 3 comments I travel internationally - a lot - and the Kindle has saved my life and the weight in my suitcase and carryon for years now.

And I recommend Calibre for keeping your various e-books. It will read any format I've found, and it's possible to strip DRM from purchased books so as to keep them without getting that silly "too many ereaders" message. (Calibre does not itself do this - you have to download and install the codecs.)


message 42: by Tom (new)

Tom Wood (tom_wood) | 25 comments David wrote: "... I work in a library and have found many younger (teens and twenties) readers have a very strong preference for printed books as recreational reading."

I've seen this behavior reported in various places around the web.

Can you suggest any reasons for the preference for print by that age group?


message 43: by Jason (new)

Jason Werner | 29 comments Printed books are the new vinyl.


message 44: by Rick (last edited Dec 27, 2018 07:59AM) (new)

Rick | 2193 comments Iain wrote: "I read both. I read on my iPad and paper books. I find paper books easier to focus on and find I am stretching to read the iPad screen (I think need new glasses though) ..."

Turn the brightness WAY down. Like to 10% or less. Helps a lot if it's the brightness and contrast that you find fatiguing. Also, if you have DRM free books or strip the DRM you can use Marvin which is a nice reader app for IOS and has one of my fave features - you can drag a finger straight down to reduce brightness or up to increase it.

The other reason I read electronically is that if I see a book I want, I can have it in minutes even if it's 11pm and stores are closed. Browsing the library and want a book? Check it out, boom read away.

I really really wish that indie stores could buy 'copies' of ebooks from publishers and sell them to me. But they can't and there doesn't seem to be any movement toward that, so...


message 45: by Iain (new)

Iain Bertram (Iain_Bertram) | 605 comments Rick wrote: "Turn the brightness WAY down. Like to 10% or less. Helps a lot if it's the brightness and contrast that you find fatiguing.
"


I wish that could help... need new eyes (aging is a pain).


message 46: by Melani (new)

Melani | 84 comments I'm not really picky, but I do tend to do most of my reading on my kindle. It's convenient (I have so many options for the next book to read right at my fingertips), and the storage can't be beat. That being said, the ability to go back and reference passages, or mark specific pages, the physical books are far better. Add in photograph heavy non-fiction then and a physical book wins, so it depends on the type of book. A reference book, instruction book, or other non-fiction I really do prefer physical copies. Cookbooks especially.


message 47: by Melani (new)

Melani | 84 comments Also, I am a person who jots notes in the margins of my books when they're particularly thought provoking, or I want to remember a particular passage. And there is no super easy way to do that with a kindle. Hand writing is much easier for me then the two finger typing you get on a kindle screen, so there's that.

And now I sound like my preference is heavily weighted towards physical books, and it's not. Most of the time I do prefer Kindle, for convenience and price mostly, but there are books that I prefer to have in physical form.


message 48: by Phillip (new)

Phillip Murrell | 81 comments Jason wrote: "Printed books are the new vinyl."

Respect.


message 49: by John (Nevets) (new)

John (Nevets) Nevets (Nevets) | 994 comments Melani wrote: "Also, I am a person who jots notes in the margins of my books when they're particularly thought provoking, or I want to remember a particular passage."

Sacralige! You defy the sanctity of the book and authors intentent by scribbling your own vile musings in them? How dare you! ;-)


Seriously, it makes total sense especially in cook books, and reference material. I completely admire you for doing the practical thing and at the same time making the book your own.

I on the other hand had it ingrained in me so hard to “respect” books, that I get disapointed with myself when I break the binding on a softcover dime novel, or smudge a page because I didn’t realize I had some sweat left on a finger.


message 50: by David (new)

David Newhall | 35 comments Tom wrote: "David wrote: "... I work in a library and have found many younger (teens and twenties) readers have a very strong preference for printed books as recreational reading."

I've seen this behavior rep..."



My take is that these digital natives use paper books to signal their brains that this is recreational, not work/study, reading.


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