the_other_sandy: Yomiko Readman hugging a book (Agt. Paper Chibi)
So, some of you may have seen me rant before about people who come up to me while I'm reading my Nook in public to tell me all about how they could never use an e-reader and there's nothing like a paper book and blah blah blah. Whatever. This is my caring face. ::points:: I have now been reading my Nook off and on during my lunch breaks at work for about a year and a half and the comments have died off, so I thought everyone who had something to say about it had gotten it out of their system. But no. I'm currently reading an actual paper book because this particular book is not available as an e-book, and what do I get? "But don't you have an e-reader? What happened, didn't you like it?"

You know what I like? Reading. I like to read hardcovers and paperbacks and e-books and magazines and fic on the Internet and fic in print zines and (yes) fic on my e-reader. Who set up this false dichotomy where you have to be on either Team Paper or Team E-Book? Why do they have to be mutually exclusive? Why can't I just be allowed to read?
the_other_sandy: Yomiko Readman hugging a book (Agt. Paper Chibi)
Dear World At Large,

Why yes, I do own an e-reader. And yes, I am reading it in public. If you have never seen one before and are genuinely curious, I won't mind giving you a little demo of how it works. I am, after all, a librarian, and anything that encourages people to read is okay by me.

However, please do not misinterpret seeing me reading my Nook in public as an invitation to share with me in great and extraordinary detail your personal philosophy on paper books vs. e-books and how you wouldn't be caught dead reading on an e-reader. I am not recruiting anyone into a secret cult of e-book aficionados, I am not selling anything, and I did not buy this e-reader for you. You are more than welcome to your opinion, but you don't see me barging up to your table to tell you how I wouldn't be caught dead drinking Diet Coke, do you?

I knew you'd understand. Now go away; I'm trying to read.

No love,

Sandy (no, the other one)
the_other_sandy: Yomiko Readman hugging a book (Agt. Paper Chibi)
Somebody talk me out of buying an e-book reader. The Sony Reader Pocket Edition is on sale until April 3. I want one, but I'm supposed to be reading this giant pile of real books I have. If I buy an e-book reader, I'm only going to put fic on it and read that instead. Besides, the Pocket Edition has the least amount of on board memory of all available e-book readers and has no SD card slot to add more memory. But it's on sale for the least amount I've ever seen a reliable e-book reader sell for.

Tell my inner miser to shut up and read the books it already has.
the_other_sandy: Gray computer floppy diskette (Computers)
I've been playing with electronic things.

First, I set up a House Sharing account for both of my computers so I could sync the music and TV episodes in iTunes on my laptop with the music in iTunes on my desktop. I finally have the same stuff on both computers.

Then I cracked and bought a region free DVD player so I could watch some DVDs I wanted to see that have never been released here. The new DVD player is set up and playing, although I won't have time to watch anything all the way through until this weekend. I did watch Joe Flanigan's first scene in Thoughtcrimes though. He plays dorky so well.
the_other_sandy: Gray computer floppy diskette (Computers)
Yes, after a month, 4 phone calls, and 3 technician visits, I actually have high-speed Internet access. The first thing I did was head over to Funimation's website to start catching up on the new Fullmetal Alchemist series. It's so nice not to have to drag my laptop to the library for that.
the_other_sandy: Gray computer floppy diskette (Computers)
Just when you thought it was safe to get back on the computer...

I just about have my desktop PC back where I want it after the big hard drive failure. The last thing I wanted to do was upgrade my Internet service. Towards that end, I signed up for DSL and sent off for a modem/router that would allow me to use the Internet on my laptop too. [livejournal.com profile] bit_boy came over last night to help me set it up. All the pieces and parts went together in minutes. Then completely failed to work. A call to tech support and one line test later revealed a problem with the wiring or hardware somewhere in my apartment building. I haven't heard back from them, so I have no idea when they'll be sending out the tech to fix it. Meanwhile, I have no Internet at home. Again. Grr.
the_other_sandy: Gray computer floppy diskette (Computers)
Still no joy on the Internet at home. I did buy a new hard drive last night, and Doctor [livejournal.com profile] bit_boy is scheduled to perform a hard drive transplant on Sunday. Meanwhile, I checked my files and it looks like I got everything. I think I'm only going to lose the fiddly little stuff (I didn't lose any of my songs, but I'm going to lose all my playlists and play counts when I reinstall iTunes; I didn't lose any of my eBooks, but I'm going to lose my reading lists and plot summaries when I reinstall Mobipocket; I didn't lose any of my videogames, but I'm going to lose all my high scores when I reinstall them; and so on and so on). I shouldn't complain. This could've been so much worse.

Meanwhile, all my episode reaction posts are going to be one day late until my PC is up and running again because I have to go to the library to post anything.

I need a computer problem icon of some kind.
the_other_sandy: Gray computer floppy diskette (Computers)
I knew I shouldn't have caught up on my flist. Every time I do, something happens to put me behind again. This time it was a catastrophic failure of the hard drive on my PC last night, which is why there was no Monday Meme. With [livejournal.com profile] bit_boy acting as phone tech support, I got to a point where I could save the few recent files I hadn't backed up yet. Nothing crucial has been lost. I'm still working on trying to connect to the Internet, but that may be a no go. Meanwhile, I've dragged my laptop to the library to use the free Wi-Fi.

In the near future, I get to replace my hard drive and upgrade to high-speed wireless Internet so if this happens again, I can still use my laptop at home (my PC is on dial-up and my laptop doesn't have a dial-up modem). I'm not sure how long it will be until I have consistent and reliable Internet access, but I'll be on as much as I can for as long as my laptop battery lasts.
the_other_sandy: Yomiko Readman hugging a book (Tick Try)
I've been seriously considering getting an e-reader of some sort ever since I found out you could load fic on them, but I couldn't decide between the Sony PRS-505 and the Kindle. Both have their good points and their bad points. Then some people on my Yahoo!Groups said they read fic on their various mobile devices. I have a PDA, so I figured I'd give it a try once before spending the money on additional techie toys.

On my first try, I was able to format a fic properly, save it to my SD card, and open it in Word Mobile. It looked great, but you can't bookmark things in Word Mobile. The document opens at the beginning every single time, so the farther you get into a fic, the more of a chore it is to find where you left off. So, I decided to give Mobipocket a try. It said it could read .doc and .rtf files, and I could download it straight to my PDA. Awesome.

I got out my PDA to download Mobipocket and discovered I couldn't get a Wi-Fi signal. I work in a Wi-Fi hotspot. I've always been able to get a Wi-Fi signal at my desk. So, out I go to look for a signal. And look. And look. I finally found one on the first floor in the middle of the open area between the reference desk and the online catalog station. Fortunately it wasn't busy, so I just stood there and downloaded and installed Mobipocket. Yay! Then I tried to open my .doc fic with it. That's when I got a message that basically said, 'Oh, when we said you could read .doc files, we really meant only if you loaded them through Mobipocket Desktop.' Nowhere did it say this on the Website. ::sigh::

So, off I go home to spend 20 minutes downloading and installing Mobipocket Desktop. It installs just fine. Yay! Then I tried to import my .doc fic from my hard drive where I'd left it after synching it to my PDA the first time. That's when I got a message that basically said, 'Oh, when we said you could load .doc files through Mobipocket Desktop, we really meant only if you have MS Word on your PC.' Which I do not. Nowhere did it say this on the Website. ::sigh::

So, on the theory that I couldn't be the only person in the history of ever to try to use Mobipocket with Open Office, I hit up teh Intarwebs. Sure enough, someone cleverer than I had figured out that Open Office can save documents as .html files. Mobipocket can read .html files. Plus, Mobipocket doesn't recognize .html files as requiring a word processor to deal with, so it just imports them directly. Yay! I loaded four fics onto my SD card in .html. That's when I discovered that having files in .html limits the display in Mobipocket to one of two of the butt-ugliest fonts I've ever seen, instead of the MS Word supported font I'd originally saved them in. ::sigh::

I chose the least objectionable of the two fonts and have made it about halfway through a 9,000 word fic. I'm getting used to the butt-ugly font, and it's nice to be able to carry some of the longer fics around with me that I can't read in one sitting (the 9,000 word fic was just a test run to see if I'd like reading off the PDA; the other fics I loaded are over 40,000 words each). The end result has largely been worth it so far, but it shouldn't require an entire evening on my part to do what should've been a simple set-up. I always get the feeling that these things are easier for other people.

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