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iPhone/iPad books apps

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#1 ~ diamond281 ~

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Posted 20 July 2010 - 01:19 PM

When I was much younger, I really did enjoy reading books but these days, I get really upset and annoyed at not being able to read for pleasure, mainly because I lose my place or I get to a point where I read the book for a couple of hours and when I next go to read more, I get confused and have to re-read it again.

However, my boyfriend got an iPad from his work and I got the new iPhone 4 recently and I decided to give it a try, firstly with iBooks. And I was really impressed! You can change the fonts - however the selection of font is limited - and make the text bigger. All the books I've found so far tend to be on white, but there's an option to make it a dark yellow colour which is good for me. The books vary in price but its about the same as a paperback and you can also get a sample of the book also.

There is an amazon app as well, however, I'm so impressed with iBooks, I have it downloaded but I haven't played with it much. It has a larger selection of books than iBooks is one of the major differences between them.

So, those with iPads, iPhones or iPod touchs, what do you think?

#2 BubblewrapPrincess


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Posted 20 July 2010 - 08:24 PM

I think that I'd wait a while before perchasing an e-reader and shop around a bit before doing so.

The e-readers do tempt me, but there will be some new ones out soon to compeate with Amazon/apple's Kindel. It will also mean existing e-readers will go down in price, and there will be some good deals around.

The big draw back for me with the apple/amazon stuff is that you can currently only purchas books from amazon for the Kindel, or the Apple store with the ipad. You also have to buy the american versons for the Kindel and it's incompatable with UK industry standard PDFs. That means you can't buy books from independent e-book publishers which are sometimes cheeper and have a much better range of e-books. So my main e-book sources wouldn't work with it, and I got e-books with them as I couldn't find the physical or e-book editions for my course, as the main suppliers didn't have them. This isn't good, as e-readers are something that should be good for students who often get asked to find obsure texts or out of print editions. e-books are a great solution to this, you can also make notes on most of them, highlight and bookmark in combination with an e-reader. The e-books also tend to be the same or cheeper than normal books, but beware, I've seen some the same or more than the hard back. Prices vary from publisher to publisher.

Both the Kindel and ipad are also back lit, which can create eye strain like that from using a computor monator. So not good if you have scoptic sensitivity or read for long periods. Look out instead for ones which aren't back lit and are made to be like reading from a normal page. They are also less reflective so can be easier to read in sunlight. However when it gets dark you will need to turn on a light, as you would with a normal book. Otherwise you might as well just get a cheap laptop, you can do more with it and it would probably cost about the same.

If you already have an ipad/iphone go for it, but I wouldn't buy them as an e-reader, for that they are over priced and not as good as actual e-reading specific devices.

In general though I feel e-readers could be good for dyslexics, as on most you have a range of size and font options, and now a few allow you to download mp3 files. So you could store your e-books and audio books together and listen as you read. For those with scoptic sensitivity like me, if you get one with a mat screan and no back light it might be good for reading other word or PDF documents instead of readin from a monitor on a computor. Some e-readers allow you to put these on the device well as e-books.

#3 BubblewrapPrincess


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Posted 20 July 2010 - 09:07 PM

If you are interested in e-readers this comparison chart might be helpful: http://en.wikipedia...._e-book_readers

And this review of the leading e-readers by PC World: http://www.pcworld.c...ok_readers.html

E-books and colour/comeptitors to the Kindel: http://www.pcworld.c...ytime_soon.html

#4 ~ diamond281 ~

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 01:39 PM

This topic was for those who already have an iPad/iPhone. I've looked into e-readers but personally, I haven't found one I've liked yet or if I have found one, then its only availble in the USA - mainly the Amazon Kindle. I can get confused with American words vs English words however the iPad is a very good alternative.

Its hard to explain why I don't like the e-readers without making up words but I HATE the screen on them since its really upsets my eyesight when I read from them, in particular Sony's. The iPad screen is very clear and brightness etc can be adjusted.

I understand your disadvantage to both Apple/Amazon however for mainstream books, they are the best out there. What is your source for e-books and I will look to see if they have an app on the iPad/iPhone.

#5 BubblewrapPrincess


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Posted 24 July 2010 - 01:15 AM

Unless you can addapt the currently incompatable UK standard PDF format, you wont be able to get them. Not even from places like Waterstones online, which is just as good for mainstream reads, and a big mainstream supplier too. Same with WH Smiths I think. As far as I know, there isn't anything to do that yet.

Most of my e-books are not mainstream books anyway, they are more specialist things which I could only get as e-books. Their main appeal to me is I can often get hard to find or otherwise pricy rair books. Or they are stuff a friend has given me, and I rairly know where they were origionally from. Sometimes they are from sites where you can self publish. I am also subscribed to a large acedemic e-book libary which is full or articals, essays and stuff I would struggle to get as their might be one copy in my uni libary, or it might need to come in from a distribution centre. Plus it's much easier to find stuff I might like using that search enguine. They have some interesting stuff on dyslexia actually.

I'd like an e-reader as I dislike reading from my laptop screan, as I find this much more difficult than reading from a printed page. I get eye strain more easily and I find it hell to proof read this way. This is why I only get hard to find stuff as e-books, and I need to do loads of print outs to proof read my writing. However I can tell the e-reader screans with out the back lighting and with a mat screan, would make it so much easier to read. They'd diminish my scoptic sensitivity issues and I could read for longer and more comfortably. If I could get one that could take word docs I could read my own or others writing on it, and if I could get one with internet acess that would be fantastic, though I'll be waiting a while for one that does this well. The idea of putting my audi-books on too, or listening and reading, is exciting, though I could do that on a laptop/tablet. So yeah, I'm all about the screans, lol.

If you don't mind the ipad screans (or like them), would get an ipad for other reasons, and you only read mainstream stuff you'd want to buy from Apple or Amazon anyway, then there isn't a problem. The main thing is if it helps you or others read and enjoy reading. Things that do that are a great idea, and I am definatly behind them.

Sorry this is a bit long and dense, I have cut it down a touch, but I'm getting a bit tired now.

#6 ~ Britannia ~

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 09:59 AM

I started reading e-books on my ipod touch using the stanza app a couple of years ago and loved it. The ability to change not only the fonts but the backgrounds as well has made reading an absolute pleasure. So I'm in total agreement with Diamond281 and I would never go back to paper books.

Recently I got the iphone 4, I thought about it long and hard before taking the plunge and considered other e-readers first. But when my old mobile phone broke down it seemed like the way to go. A month later and I don't have buyers remorse. I tried ibooks but went back to using stanza which works even better on the iphone4 than it does on my old ipod touch. Plus it allows me to shop around for my ebooks. It is sad that ebooks are so expensive especially as the overheads must be lower but I'm sure that in time they will get more competitive.

I also love Project Gutenberg which have over 33,ooo books for which the copyright has expired as so are made available for free.


I'm sorry if I sounded like a commercial there, but you can't get better than the complete works of Jane Austen for free!

Another exciting development for me is that my local libraries (Kent County Libraries) have just introduced an e-book service. I haven't tried it yet but I plan to very soon - I'll let you know how I get on.

One last and slightly off topic point in favour of the iphone4 (and I imagine the ipad) is the Dragon Dictation App - It's really impressive! I actually find it more accurate than my PC version and finally I'm able to send texts. I never really bothered with texting in the past - trying to text using the number keypad on my old phone was pretty much a non starter - but now I'm as text savvy as my 15 year old niece!

#7 ~ diamond281 ~

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 01:31 PM

I'm glad that you enjoy the iBooks app, Britannia! I'm currently reading 1984, which is a book I always wanted to read - and got it recommended me to a lot - its so nice to actually remember stuff that happened in it without having to go back and re-read again, which was one of the main reason why I gave up reading for pleasure! I enjoy reading off my iPhone 4 also and its something I always have on me! Ideal when the buses here never seem to run on time!!

My fiance got the Dragon Dictation App for the iPad, kinda for his work but mainly for me to play with it. I know the voice recogision software is still considered poor but I was very impressed with it! Ok, it didn't get some of the psychologist's names I was using for practise but it didn't get our names either but to me, very minor issue! One of the reasons I was impressed is that normally, it doesn't work with Scottish accents but it did for me :D

#8 ~ Anders Johansen ~

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Posted 13 November 2010 - 04:42 PM


More of a "do you want to try a gizmo?" post :)

I recently ported my writing aid software "Typ-O" to the iPad. It basically combines a language model, a spelling error database and a model of dyslexic typing errors to provide word predictions and regular spell checking while you type.

If you'd care to try it for free and and have access to the US App Store, you can use one of the review codes below to get it at no cost. All I ask is that you tell me if something can be improved or fixed, and that you take the time to give the software a fair review if you like it - you'd be surprised how few satisfied users take the time to even rate software in the App Store.

Click here to find it in the App Store:

Review codes (use the "Redeem" link from the menu):

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