epic Nexus 7 post

Tuesday, March 19th, 2013 11:27 pm
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

I've been meaning to write up my new tablet, the Nexus 7, since shortly after I got it for Christmas. I'm bumping it up the queue now because at Lunacon I said that I think it ought to be the default for someone who wants an electronic device to read books on. There are sound reasons you might want E Ink, but absent those I think people should go for the general-purpose tablet rather than a Nook or Kindle device.

This is, as far as I'm aware, the 7" tablet with the best hardware out there. The screen is gorgeous, it's fast and responsive, and it runs the latest version of Android (which automatically updates). I love the built-in swipe typing, which is practically magic, and the N7 in portrait orientation is just the right width to make that really comfortable. The only minor flaw is that its camera is front-facing, meant for Skype etc. (which I haven't had occasion to try yet), and so it's very difficult to use for anything else. I've taken it on a couple of trips now as a netbook substitute (with a Bluetooth keyboard), and it's been great; the only ordinary things it hasn't been able to do are a few things in WordPress.

As for reading, here's why I think it actually should be the default choice for that purpose: the available apps mean that you can get books from anywhere and extensively customize your reading experience; together with the screen, that means the N7 can be very versatile, simple, and comfortable to read with.

more detail )

Great Big List o' Apps )

Final notes:

I like this cover (don't get this one, it started coming apart after a month), this Bluetooth keyboard (picked because it was in Staples when I needed one and had comfortable keys, unlike the Microsoft keyboard also there), and this travel charger (though it does not play nice with my Sony ereader, unlike the included N7 charger).

The manual fails to tell you the critical piece of information that you can paste text into an empty text field by a long press on that field.

If you're moving files onto the N7 by plugging the USB cable into your computer, the N7 has to be awake and not in the lock screen to start.

I was going to do a screenshot of my home page, but I would have had to fuzz out so much it wasn't worth it. I have: a Weather Channel widget with the forecast; GMail and Google Calendar widgets showing my inbox and schedule for the next few days; three Remember the Milk widgets (one showing current/upcoming stuff, one showing (sigh) overdue stuff, one linking straight to my shopping list); and a whole lot of folders for apps.

What else would you like to know?

Digression regarding Calibre Companion )

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

A long long time ago (well, okay, in 2009), [personal profile] rachelmanija recommended some (ETA) translations retellings and adaptations of the Mahabharata, and I put the two volumes of the version by Ramesh Menon on my Amazon wishlist to await the appropriate moment (as they were thirty-odd bucks each in paperback).

Today I was buying some other things and went down my wishlist, as I sometimes do, seeing if forthcoming things have been released or prices have dropped or whatnot, and discovered that the two volumes were now available as ebooks for ~$3.50. Finding the second volume was not as easy as it should be, so here's direct links to both: volume one and volume two. (Barnes & Noble currently seems to be listing volume 1 twice, though they may just have attached the wrong cover image.)

kate_nepveu: raven flying across white background (raven-in-flight)

The ebook edition of Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, one of the best books I've read in years, is currently $2.99 at B&N and Amazon. And it's a big thick book too, so you'll be saving your hands as well as your wallet.

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

Certainly by the time SteelyKid is old enough to read Bujold, she will have an e-book reader or equivalent of her own (and thus access to the entire Vorkosigan saga).

(The "B" paperback shelves will also look much different now that the NYPL has the first twelve Dresden Files in two omnibus e-book editions.)

Not sure what this means for our Pratchett paperbacks, which she might read younger, though. Hmm.

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

Through July 5, they are on sale for $2.00 each, DRM-free and in multiple formats, at Fictionwise. It looks like the best way to get to them is to follow the author links: Jacqueline Lichtenberg and Jean Lorrah.

Coupon code 070111 for 60% off everything. Via a post at [community profile] ebooks, which has some other suggestions.

(Hmm. Geoff Ryman is GoH at Readercon this year, I've never read any of his stuff, and Fictionwise has The Child Garden for $4. What else might I find . . . ?)

(Answer: A whole bunch of Dave Duncan's books, though not as cheap, and many books from Small Beer Press, and now I have to stop looking and do work.)

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

Between Jennifer Crusie and Barbara O'Neal; lengthy and seems to contain a good mix of enthusiasm and practical judgment, from what I know of publishing. In two parts: part one, part two.

(X-posted to [community profile] ebooks.)

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