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Reading on paper or screen

Discussion in 'The Reading Room' started by TidiousTed, Sep 13, 2011.

  1. TidiousTed

    TidiousTed Practically Family

    Although I've been working on PCs since I bought my first production unit in 1987 and have worked on computers ever since I would never consider reading a book on a screen of any sort. Books should be read printed on paper sitting in a comfortable easy chair preferably accompanied by a cup of decent assam and a glass of old port. Therefore:


  2. Books on screens make my eyes hurt.
    Books on paper don't.

    Books on paper smell good.
    Books on screens don't.

    Books on screens disappear when the battery runs out.
    Books on paper don't.

    Books on paper insulate the living room.
    Books on screens don't.
  3. Both have their place. I prefer a "real" book in the comfort of my own home, but I also love the convenience of my Kindle when I have very limited luggage space. Can't knock the amount of great stuff downloadable for free. Same with music, really..... I have an iPod because it allows me to carry music places I can't take my record collection, but I still use CDs and vinyl at home.
  4. :eusa_clap:eusa_clap:eusa_clap
  5. I've read one whole book online. It was a Zane Grey novel, of all things, and it was on Project Gutenburg. I didn't mind it at all. I must say, most of the books I read are old hard bound volumes, and since I carry them around everywhere, and mainly only read on the subway, they get butchered. I'm really death on books, which makes me feel bad. So I think I wouldn't mind having a Kindle, or whatever. However I suspect that most of the books I read would not be available in electronic form.
  6. I know some people who swear that the newest kindles, with their non-reflective screens, are as comfortable to read as a printed page. I just love the feel of an actual book.
  7. The biggest problem I have is with the single-page layout -- I read two pages at a time, the standard book layout, and setting a screen to that type of display means the type is too small for my eyes to handle. Enlarging the type and scrolling makes it even worse -- I read faster than it's possible to scroll a screen without getting nauseous. No matter how I slice it, the technology holds no appeal for me. If the time comes when all books are electronic, I'll limit my reading to placemats and cereal boxes.
  8. My room mate just got a Kindle, and although I have no desire for one, I found myself wishing I could get a computer moniter with a screen like that, that non-reflective surface. Might ease the eyestrain, I get massive headaches from the computer every now and then.
  9. Angelique

    Angelique New in Town

    This is me as well. I can read short blurby things on screen but anything beyond a paragraph or two makes my eyes glaze over.
  10. Old Rogue

    Old Rogue Practically Family

    I agree with everything that has been said regarding the superiority of a real book over reading electronically. That being said, I now buy most of my books as ebooks. I just can't beat the convenience of always having my reading material with me on my Droid-X whenever I have a few minutes to kill. Plus, I can store a tremendous number of books on a single CD as opposed to one whole closet and a large section of my attic that are devoted to storage of the books I've collected over a lifetime. Reading on the screen was something of an adjustment, but now that I've read twenty or so books in that format it works just fine.
  11. Yeps

    Yeps Call Me a Cab

    I agree entirely. I don't have a kindle, but I was reading on my brother's when visiting him, and I thought that it was a good solution. I only had room for one book (plane ride down and up) in my luggage, so when we had some dead time down there, I needed something to read.
  12. AmateisGal

    AmateisGal I'll Lock Up

    As a writer and thus, trying to stay on top of all the latest technology, I recognize e-books are definitely here to stay, Indeed, electronic publishing has changed publishing overall.

    That being said, I just can't make myself buy an e-reader. I think they're great - but not for me. I'm too much of a real book lover...
  13. I prefer e-books.

    1) They stay open on your lap, without losing the page you're on, even in the wind/with a fan on.
    2) I don't have to choose what e-book to take, I can take them all.
    3) If I need a new e-book, I can get one immediately, wherever I am, d/l'd to my phone.
    4) The lighting is always just right.
    5) The font size is always just right.
    6) I can leave notes on the pages and remove them later at no loss of quality.
    7) They level the playing field so that any writer can get a book out to the public.
  14. Paper books are one of the things I like the most in this life.

    For me, the physical and emotional satisfaction of browsing in a bookshop plus reading and handling a real book is much greater than viewing a small sterile and colorless electronic pad (even if that pad is more convenient).

    "The printed book has worked well for 555 years. Call it low technology."

    My library will always remain 20th century.
  15. TidiousTed

    TidiousTed Practically Family

    Since I started this thread let me throw a little more petrol on the fire. What do you guys think about sound books. I ask because all though I never read books on a screen I listen to sound books quite often. It takes about two and a half hour to drive to where my daughters live and that is half a book going there and the rest going home.
  16. My 2ยข. I can't tell how many times I start a book, only to put it "somewhere" and forget about it. With the iPad/iPhone, etc., I can not only download and carry my books everywhere, it syncs my bookmarks, highlights, etc. so when I go to the other device, it's on the last page I read on my Mac or iPhone, etc. Plus, I don't mark them up or dog ear them :)
    I've already finished more books this year than the last 5 combined.
    But, the odd thing is that I have to buy physical magazines. I hate the electronic ones so far. Sadly, we lost our best newsstand last year in Pasadena. Sign o' the times I'm afraid :(

    Given all that, we still buy lots of books - lots of them. My wife gets old books for her library of materials she uses at work, and of course, there's the coffee table books that are meant to be picked up and thumbed through. Books will always be around, just not filling my briefcase or pack when I can take along 100 of them on a phone.
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2011
  17. Old Rogue

    Old Rogue Practically Family

    Good point Hadley. Even though I read ebooks almost exclusively now, I still make my weekly trip to the bookstore to browse. Holding a book in my hand and thumbing through the pages is still the best way for me to determine if I want to read it. It's just that now I normally put the book back on the shelf and go to the bookstore's web site when I get home to buy the book.

    I've only listened to a few audio books, but I do like them. The main reason I don't buy more audio books is that I don't normally take drives long enough to get through the book in a reasonable amount of time.
  18. There used to be a show on public radio called "The Radio Reader," which I enjoyed listening to -- but in general I have a hard time with audio books because I read faster than the guy on the tape does and I get impatient. (It's a pity Walter Winchell didn't live long enough to record audio books.)
  19. I am curious about something!

    Why would anybody need 100 books all at the same time? What for? What is the use of that? [huh]
  20. You don't. It was an exaggeration of the fact that I may want to have 10 with me on a vacation. 10 books in my bag - even paperbacks - is ridiculous!
    I can take books with me camping - cooking, emergency medical info, maps, you name it. All books aren't fiction - lots of what I have are reference. And one thing about e-books, they can have video and other helpful things paper books don't. I don't read romance novels :)
    My daughter is in med school - almost all her books are on the iPad now. She's gone from an 80-pound bag to one device plus one or two books. Can't beat that.

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