Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

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Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby manas » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:22 am

Hi all,

I'm not very tech savvy, so I thought I would ask for some assistance, from those who are.

For a variety of reasons, it isn't good for me to have an Internet connection at home right now. But I got an idea: I could get an 'e-reader' (or some such device) that, while not being able to access the Internet - preferably incapable of doing so - can, however, be plugged into one of those external hard drives which can hold a vast amount of information. I could put into it the entire ATI website (for example), pali learning aids, the entire pali canon...many possibilities. So, I would go to the local library (which is where I am typing this post from), download stuff onto the external HDrive, and build up a vast library of useful, wholesome information that I could then take home, to be accessed at will. It would become like a vast, searchable library, without the need for an entire roomful of actual, paper books.

Ok, the three main questions: is there an e-reader (or similar device) that would be able to 1.not be able access the Internet at all, yet 2. properly be able to display pali fonts (in the manner of the ATI site, for example; and without scrambling up or putting a box in place of certain letters, as I have seen done on my old phone sometimes, and 3. be able to be plugged in to one of those external hard drives that can hold masses of information. :?:

Thanks for reading. I actually don't care what the device is, or what it's called. I just want something which can become a kind of internet substitute, a private gold-mine of information that I can search and enjoy from home. (And something affordable - forgot to mention that one...) Ok that's the entire wish-list now :)

:anjali:
Primum non nocere: "first, do no harm."
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Re: Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby LonesomeYogurt » Tue Jan 22, 2013 1:14 am

You could easily just get a laptop and pay like 20 bucks to have the internet functionality removed. Would that work?
Gain and loss, status and disgrace,
censure and praise, pleasure and pain:
these conditions among human beings are inconstant,
impermanent, subject to change.

Knowing this, the wise person, mindful,
ponders these changing conditions.
Desirable things don’t charm the mind,
undesirable ones bring no resistance.

His welcoming and rebelling are scattered,
gone to their end,
do not exist.
- Lokavipatti Sutta

Stuff I write about things.
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Re: Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby Ben » Tue Jan 22, 2013 1:22 am

Hi manas,
I have a kindle touch and iPad mini (which I am in currently).
You cannot beat the screen resolution of the kindle and it is very easy to use. With the wifi connection, you can get onto the wifi network at your library and, if you so desire, purchase books from amazon. It takes about one minute to download a purchased book. The downside to the kindle is that reading other formats can be difficult to impossible. You can get around it by downloading calibre which is an e book manager and hosting that on your home computer, which will allow you to convert PDFs and ePub format files to mobi.
I recently received an iPad mini as a gift. The iPad is much more than an e-reader, and its added functionality is nothing to sneeze at. It's incredibly versatile and I do love using mine. As an e-reader, the screen resolution is not as good as the kindle, but it has an illuminated screen, where-as the kindle requires lighting (book light or lamp). The upside of the iPad is that you can download adobe acrobat for iPad which allows you to read your PDF documents very easily.
My kids have the google nexus tablets and they love using and reading from their tablets. It has a similar functionality to iPad but are cheaper.
With any e-reader or tablet, I think you will need to have a home computer to either transfer files from your external hard drive and help manage your content. For both iPad and kindle you can sync between devices so that your books are available to you on your computer, iPad/kindle and smartphone. And if you have Internet access, you can have access anywhere.
I hope that helps.
Kind regards,
Ben
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Re: Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby manas » Tue Jan 22, 2013 1:52 am

Ben wrote:...
With any e-reader or tablet, I think you will need to have a home computer to either transfer files from your external hard drive and help manage your content. For both iPad and kindle you can sync between devices so that your books are available to you on your computer, iPad/kindle and smartphone. And if you have Internet access, you can have access anywhere.
I hope that helps.
Kind regards,
Ben
Thanks for all the advice, Ben. :anjali: But could I just use the computers at my local library "to either transfer files from my external hard drive and help manage my content", rather than a computer of my own? I am taking a long break from having the Internet at home, I will have it back one day, but not for a while. And if I have a device that is Internet capable. it would be all too easy to, in a moment when my resolve is temporarily weakened, just go down the road and get a cheap 'n easy usb modem Internet plan, and get connected again. I actually gave my smart phone away to my brother to look after, I am using an old mobile phone for phone calls now. Even the smart phone has had to go. The Internet is full of interesting rabbit holes for my intellect to journey down, and it has sucked away so much time from me (due primarily to my social isolation, lack of work, etc, which tend to draw me in to the online world as an escape). So I really do need, for now, a device that is incapable of accessing the net, but that can access info from a portable mass storage device (external hard drive, yes?), and when a comoputer is needed only using the ones at the local library (which is not a very nice place to spend all day on the net, and that's good from my perspective, it means I don't end up all day on the Internet!)

:?:
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Re: Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby Ben » Tue Jan 22, 2013 3:42 am

If I were you, I would deal with your Internet addiction a little differently, by exerting self control rather than move the internet off the property. Put it back on but limit yourself to an hour a day. By confronting your addiction head-on, you will probably have greater success than avoiding the Internet at home altogether.
Personally, I wouldn't use a public computer to search or transfer files. I think you are going to have some difficulty finding a tablet that will take files directly from an external hard drive. Checkout the functionality of google's nexus and the nook, as they may be able to do what you require.
Kind regards,
Ben
"Only those who take to meditation with good intentions can be assured of success. With the development of the purity and the power of the mind backed by the insight into the ultimate truth of nature, one might be able to do a lot of things in the right direction for the benefit of mankind."

Sayagyi U Ba Khin


Compassionate Hands Foundation (Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • Buddhist Global Relief
UNHCR Syria Emergency Relief AppealTyphoon Haiyan Relief AppealKiva: (person to person micro-finance)

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Re: Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby Mawkish1983 » Tue Jan 22, 2013 5:44 am

Yeah, with the Nexus 7 I know you can transfer files from some external drives using an OTG cable, but the Nexus also allows connection to the internet. I suppose the WiFi only model would be fine if you had no WiFi at home.

I am, however, in agreement with Ben here. Avoidance isn't the best way to deal with a problem.
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Re: Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby James the Giant » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:21 pm

manas wrote:...can, however, be plugged into one of those external hard drives which can hold a vast amount of information. I could put into it the entire ATI website (for example), pali learning aids, the entire pali canon...many possibilities. So, I would go to the local library (which is where I am typing this post from), download stuff onto the external HDrive, and build up a vast library of useful, wholesome information that I could then take home, to be accessed at will. It would become like a vast, searchable library, without the need for an entire roomful of actual, paper books.

You know most e-readers come with gigabytes of storage, and the whole Sutta Pitaka takes up just 15 megabytes or so? You can have thousands of books on an ebook, and still have room for more. There's no need for one that can take fancy external storage.

Some other thoughts...

You can get cheap e-readers which have no wifi. They are horrible cheap junk but they can't connect to the internet except through a computer. You'd have to go to the library to load books and stuff onto it.

Or you could get a Kindle wifi (Not the 3G model) and simply remove the Wifi antenna. It's not difficult... here's a picture of it... just take it out.
Image
Again, you'd have to go to the library to put stuff on it. Plus the kindle isn't friendly for different formats... not practical if you don't have a computer of your own.

This Nexus 7 which is apparently capable of accessing some external drives... the wifi antenna on that is very easy to remove too... it's just glued onto the inside of the white plastic rear cover. Unpeel it, and throw it away.
Image

Almost any e-reader or tablet will have some Wifi antenna module you can snip out or remove. You can google it.
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Re: Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby Mawkish1983 » Tue Jan 22, 2013 7:34 pm

Just get a second hand one because modifying the hardware will obviously invalidate the warranty :)
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Re: Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby manas » Wed Jan 23, 2013 12:03 am

Ben wrote:If I were you, I would deal with your Internet addiction a little differently...


Ben, this topic was asking for advice about how to achieve a particular goal, it wasn't meant to be about 'me' as such, and I certainly don't find being labelled as having an 'addiction' as helpful. As it stands, I did an online test for internet addiction, and my usage and behaviour came up as 'normal'...

I heard some people joking on the radio, all very capable and successful people, about their inability to live without the Internet. And I thought, how odd and strange that before the net, we all got along fine without it, yet now, most people feel like they could not live without it. So I am going to prove to myself that I can. There is an extra motive, which is to kind of force myself to go out more and meet real, physical people again, rather than just chat with virtual ones. It''s hard for a shy person to begin to break out of their shell and make what I consider a wholesome resolve to change his life for the better. But, I did not want to have to defend my reputation here like this, I was very specific about the advice I wanted. If it was about addiction, I would have said, "help with addiction needed". But, I didn't say that.

Still, I appreciate your helpfulness otherwise, but I think you have misunderstood my intention here.

kind regards
Primum non nocere: "first, do no harm."
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Re: Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby manas » Wed Jan 23, 2013 12:10 am

LonesomeYogurt wrote:You could easily just get a laptop and pay like 20 bucks to have the internet functionality removed. Would that work?


It might, that's a possible solution.

James, and Mawkish, I really appreciated your detailed advice, although I will have to get my bro to read over it, some of it goes a bit over my head...he will properly comprehend it.

To all: :thanks:
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Re: Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby marc108 » Wed Jan 23, 2013 12:14 am

manas wrote:
Ok, the three main questions: is there an e-reader (or similar device) that would be able to 1.not be able access the Internet at all, yet 2. properly be able to display pali fonts (in the manner of the ATI site, for example; and without scrambling up or putting a box in place of certain letters, as I have seen done on my old phone sometimes, and 3. be able to be plugged in to one of those external hard drives that can hold masses of information. :?:


i have no person experience but this:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 1CU0CT9361

ebook reader seems to be: cheap, well reviewed, no internet connection, the memory is SD card based which means up to 32 gb (capacity for 10k books?).

pali font i dont know about, you'd have to contact them:

http://www.ectaco.com/feedback/
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Re: Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby tsurezuregusa » Wed Jan 23, 2013 3:22 pm

Hello manas,

I am using a Amazon Kindle e-reader. The new generation has background lighting too.

There are two ways to get external pdfs on your kindle. You can connect it via USB to a computer and just drag&drop the pds onto your Kindle. Or, you go through your Kindle email-address. Using this way you can also convert the pdf file to a mobi-file.

I have used my Kindle for reading Chinese script and that works well, but I am not sure about Pali script.

The Kindle is able to access the Internet, but nobody is doing it except downloading new books from Amazon. It is definetly not a device for Internet surfing.

Kind regards,
Florian
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Re: Advice requested re e-readers (or equivalent)

Postby manas » Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:58 pm

Thank you also, marc and tsure, for your advice. I think I have a fair bit to look into now...
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