Why NOT eBooks?
And then ultimately, for some people, at some point, the format could hardly matter, as they give themselves in to the immersiveness of a story and the ever so impressive writing style of talented authors, not having a care as to how they're reading it. Regardless, at the advents of new and newer technology and better innovations, eBooks are becoming evermore popular, possibly and slowly replacing the hardcopies, which might one day be pushed behind glasses in museums labelled as antiques of an 'old' world. Time moves forward. And we adapt.
Fancy new tech finally makes eBooks practical
Ebooks were supposed to be very convenient: easy to use, easy to get, easy to distribute. And they are all that. But unfortunately, they fall behind in the most basic requirement: readability. As convenient as they might be, staring at the computer screen for hours is a chore. No matter how good the content in the eBooks might be, reading them on your computer just isn't practical; especially not with the CRT monitors we use today or even the expensive LCDs.
But now, now, thanks to recent technological developments, the technology giants like Sony and Fujitsu are coming out with gadgets and devices that let you finally use eBooks the way they probably were meant to be used in the first place. To be read on a light, portable device that's easier on the eyes, has significantly better battery life, no start-up time, lower price than any PC or laptop… and so on.
For a dream-come-true gadget, the Sony Reader is pretty much fantastic, except for its very high price of around $350. The best thing about this sleek little toy is its amazing eInk-based display. The text looks almost as good as paper and are amazingly readable thanks to its high resolution 6-inch grayscale display.
The device supports all kinds of eBook formats, and also pictures (in grayscale) and music; so that means you can put whatever you want in it. But here's the hottest part: RSS support with images. The digital morning paper is finally about to happen!
The folks over at Amazon turned up with an eBook reader of their own, the Amazon Kindle eReader, with a display just as good, but slightly better features and an awful ancient early nineties look. The device has a six-inch, 800 by 600 pixel display, 256MB of RAM, a keyboard, scroll wheel, mini USB port. Despite the device not looking that great, the features do seem to place this as quite a nice alternative to Sony's offering.
Fujitsu, on the other hand, have an even nicer but even more expensive eBook reader. They have created a colour display with the same kind of “memory effect” as the Sony's grayscale one. That means Fujitsu's reader is every bit as good as the Sony Reader, but it's also in color. Oh, and the screen is touch-sensitive, and it's good enough to be seen without backlighting. Unfortunately the world isn't a perfect place and such a nice gadget has an equally unreasonable price tag. Costing at more than a thousand dollars for each reader, it kinda beats the whole purpose of having a portable display-thingy you can use to read all your downloaded stuff easily.
All of these nifty devices have online capabilities letting you buy and download books.
Are all these neat gadgets too expensive for you? Of course, we might just want to wait till the technology matures and we get really special devices that does all that, and more, for really really cheap. Or, if you wouldn't mind reading stuff in you cellphone, with a bit of little work you might just find a nice cheaper alternative! If you have a cellphone that lets you run Java-based applications on it, you'll be able to turn your little phone into a tiny little library in your pocket! That, of course, if you don't mind reading long bits of text from the teeny-tiny screens of our mobile phones.
All you've got to do is to head over to http://www.getjar.com/products/8730/TinyBook, download the tiny 10 kilobyte software and follow the simple instructions to create you an eBook from any bits of text you want. The nice eBook will readable on any cellphone that'd let you run Java, and the sizes of the books remain very small too.
By Ahmed Ashiful Haque Niloy
Few things hurt as bad as knowing the person you love, is in love with someone else. What do you do, though, when that someone else is your own sister? Thus does Bharti Kirchner start her flavourful, colourful novel with a painful love triangle.
The story initially starts off with very idealised, two-dimensional characters. Aloka is all sugar and spice, not unlike Jane Bennet from Pride and Prejudice. Sujata is jealous and spiteful, and Pranab is the confused lover. It is only the author's seductively spicy narration that keeps the reader engaged; like a steaming cup of masala chai . Gradually, however, they mature, and their personalities take on new facets, so that by the end of the read they've charmed you. Woven into the narrative is this sense of nostalgia, and the immigrant experience is also treated realistically.
Darjeeling, a cup of tea, a platter of nimki…you couldn't ask for a better way to spend a rainy afternoon.
By Sabrina F Ahmad
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