Tag Archives: Keyboard

Ebook news digest: the birth of travel photography, ereader still rules, Lenovo’s new keyboard for writers

2016-09-04

Ebook news digest September 4, 2016

an office for a digital nomad in Bordeaux, France
Why I like my e-reader better than my smartphone (TNW)

Although the days of quickly growing the user base are over for ereaders, many book lovers still make the magic discovery how easy and convenient it is to read on an ereader. Here is a tech reporter’s story.

New European publishing rules could cost Google and Facebook (IT Pro Portal)

News publishers in some European countries, like France and Germany already have tried to get a piece of the revenue that online services, such as Facebook and Google generate from the publishers’ content. Some methods have failed, whereas in some cases Google has agreed to pay something to the publishers. Now, EU has taken the topic seriously and is planning a legislation titled Neighboring Rights that would give full control to the publishers to determine who can loan or reference their content. If this initiative moves forward, it is a dramatic change. It will mean big business model reconsideration for many online services.

Meet the Mother Daughter Duo Changing the Face of Digital Nomads
(The Huffington Post)

An exceptional proposition to become a digital nomad: mother with her nine year old daughter. One year in four locations, each on a different continent. Hopes are high at departure, so we would love hear from them after six or twelve months.

Lenovo launches Yoga Book: A tablet with touch keyboard, stylus that turns written ink into digital notes (CNBC)

A good keyboard is what most writers require from a laptop. You get the feel and the sound of the keys that are clicking and cracking. Perhaps it simply means that something is being done, but it can be satisfying. Lenovo has introduced another option for a physical keyboard: a touch-sensitive keyboard. The Yoga Book is a tablet/laptop hybrid that has a display where laptops usually have a display, but instead of a physical keyboard, there is another touch sensitive display that is used as the keyboard. We can’t wait to try this one.

The birth of travel photography (Daily Mail)

Never thought of it, but of course, images taken in exotic places were among the first photographs people wanted to have for themselves as memories. All right, perhaps selfies and portraits came first, but travel photography must have been a close second. Rare photos taken 170 years ago in Egypt have been discovered, and they were auctioned to the highest bidder. These pictures shown in the article may have started the whole travel photography hobby and business.

If you travel, write and photograph, perhaps you have a book in you that is seeking a publisher?

Word processor for writers who love typewriters, but want modern features

2016-02-24

There is something romantic in old mechanical typewriters that make a loud noise when a writer types a book or an article with one. Computers and word processing applications make writing a manuscript faster and more convenient, but a computer offers distractions that may attract some authors away from their actual work. What if these authors could get a single-purpose machine like a mechanical typewriter, but it was equipped with modern conveniences? That’s exactly what the Freewrite provides.
freewrite typewriter, word processor, woman
The Freewrite is a remarkable hybrid of the old and the new: a merger of a mechanical typewriter and a cloud-connected writing app. The key features of the Freewrite are:

– E Ink screen. Black and white screen that is commonly used in ereaders. It is sharp and very battery-friendly solution. The Freewrite has added front light to the screen, allowing typing in poor lighting conditions.
– Full-size mechanical keyboard.
– Wireless connection (Wi-Fi) for backups.
– Documents can be saved on a cloud service: Google Drive, Evernote, or Dropbox.
– More than one million pages can be saved in the device storage space.
– Aluminum body and stowable handle. Writers who travel or like to go out to write want ruggedness.
– Multiple languages supported.
– 4-week battery life.
– Instant start.

freewrite typwriter, cloud connected via  wifi
The Freewrite costs $449 (plus taxes and shipping). You can order it here.

It is easy to find a decent Windows laptop for the same price that has more than enough processing power for writing, photo editing, communications, following the news and web surfing. Research carefully, and you may find a laptop with a full workday battery life as well.

An alternative – which we have been trying out on our recent trips – is a good 9- or 10-inch tablet and a wireless keyboard. We have been using a $30 Bluetooth keyboard that we have connected to the Apple iPad or Android tablet, and we have absolutely liked the typing experience. It is instantly on, and we can save our work on the device and copy it to the cloud for backup. Tablets have a long battery life when used for typing.

Google Pixel C can be a fantastic tablet, but for serious typing, try out the keyboard yourself

2015-09-30

Google Pixel C is not the first tablet the company has introduced, but it is the first one that comes with a keyboard. The tablet display is 10.2 inches in size. It is a high density, high resolution (2560×1700) display. The keyboard and tablet are not mechanically connected, but the Pixel C becomes a laptop-like computer when the display is attached to a specific place on the keyboard. Strong magnets hold the units together. A 10-inch tablet with a keyboard: is it a good idea readers and writers?
google pixel c, laptop mode
The Google Pixel C comes in two configurations: 32GB model is priced at $499 and 64GB $599. The keyboard costs $149 extra.

Reading ebooks on a high-resolution, high-quality tablet that has large screen is an experience we love. If we can get a tablet like that for $499, it is worth serious consideration.

Typing long texts on a 10-inch tablet that has a keyboard of the same size isn’t a tempting idea. Although many function keys have been removed from the Pixel C keyboard, it is still very small. And the price: $149. Come on, it is only a keyboard, even if it comes with magnets.

We have successfully used a configuration where we have a battery-powered almost full-size keyboard ($30 at an electronics store) connected via Bluetooth to a 10-inch tablet. It works fine.
googlepixelc-stand
The Google Pixel C is powered by Android 6.0 operating system software. Version 6 of the world’s most popular operating system provides incremental improvements over version 5 – no earth-shaking new features.

Apple iPad Pro is significantly larger (and pricier) than the Pixel C, and has a special keyboard available as well. Read an analysis of the iPad Pro here.

View a hands-on video of the Google Pixel C tablet by Digital Trends:

Google Pixel C key features and technical specifications

– Android 6.0 operating system software.
– 10.2 inch touch screen display with 3:2 aspect ratio.
– Resolution 2560 x 1700 pixels, at 239 PPI
– 400 nit brightness, 178° viewing angle.
– Intel HD Graphics 5500 (Integrated)
– 4K video output over DisplayPort or HDMI with optional Type-C video adapter cable
– Intel Core i5 processor, 2.2GHz, 8GB memory or Intel Core i7 processor, 2.4GHz, 16GB memory.
– 2 USB Type-C connectors.
– 2 USB 3.0 Standard A connectors.
– microSD memory card slot.
– 720P wide angle video camera with blue glass
– 32GB or 64GB of flash storage, depending on model.
– Wi-Fi 802.11ac (supports a/b/g/n/ac), 2.4 and 5GHz, 2×2 spatial streams
– Bluetooth 4.0
– Stereo speakers
– Built-in microphone, and headphone/microphone combo
– USB Type-C Charger, 60W
– Up to 12 hours of battery life.
– Dimensions 11.7 x 8.8 x 0.6 inches (297.7mm x 224.55mm x 15.3mm)
– Weight 3.3lbs (1.5Kg)

Apple iPad Pro is both an ebook reader and a computer for some serious work

2015-09-10

Tablets became an instant hit product category in 2010, when the original Apple iPad was introduced. Five years, and several iPad models later, Apple has decided to make the iPad bigger. The iPad Pro has a 12.9- inch display which promotes the tablet into the same size category where laptops such as the MacBook and Macbook Air already are.
apple ipad pro, man on a beach
The starting price for the iPad Pro is $799 (models with higher specs are $949 and $1079), making it a bit cheaper than the MacBook or Macbook Air. As the name implies, the iPad Pro is targeted to professional use: enterprises, entrepreneurs and artists.

If you want to use the iPad Pro as an ereader, you can load your EPUB and PDF ebooks to the included iBooks app. The large screen is well suited for reading PDF-books and documents. Also fixed layout multimedia books created in iBooks Author shine on the large high-resolution display.

Because of its price, using the iPad Pro solely for reading and web surfing, however, may not justify the investment.

If you want to use the iPad Pro also as a computer where you write your next bestseller, you probably want to buy a detachable keyboard from Apple or from a accessory manufacturer, like Logitech. Apple’s keyboard for the iPad Pro is a protective case that can be folded and used as a stand and as a keyboard. The Apple keyboard for the iPad costs $169.
apple ipad pro, pencil drawing
Authors, artists and graphic designers may find a stylus that Apple has developed specifically for the iPad useful. It is called the Pencil, and its price is $99. A reason for the high price of the Apple stylus is that it comes with embedded electronics. The Pencil can sense the angle how it is held in the hand and the pressure it is pushed against the screen, and the tablet app behaves accordingly.

iBooks Author is not on the list of applications that are available for the iPad Pro. iBooks Author is an application that runs on Mac computers (OS X). It is used for creating fixed layout multimedia ebooks, such as books about movies or travel guides.

A similar product with Apple’s large tablet is Microsoft Surface Pro. It has a 12-inch display, and a stylus is included in the product package. Incidentally, the Surface Pro prices start at $799. Microsoft introduced a soft case that doubles as a decent keyboard for the tablet already two years ago.

Other large screen ereaders and tablets are, for instance, Sony DPT-S1 ereader with 13.3 inch black-and-white E ink screen and Samsung Galaxy Pro Android tablet with 12.2-inch screen.

View a hands-on video of the iPad Pro where you can see the keyboard case and pencil as well:

Apple iPad Pro key features and technical specifications

– iOS 9 operating system software with multitasking.
– iBooks ebook reading app pre-installed.
– 12.9-inch LED-backlit display.
– Resolution 2732 x 2048 at 264 pixels per inch (ppi).
– Fingerprint-resistant oleophobic, antireflective coating.
– 8 megapixel camera.
– Camera features: autofocus, ƒ/2.4 aperture, face detection, exposure control, panorama images (up to 43 megapixels), timer, geotagging.
– Video mode: 1080p HD video recording (30 fps), slow motion (120 fps), time-lapse video, image stabilization, geotagging.
– Front camera: 1.2 megapixel photos, 720p video recording.
– Two microphones for video calls and recording.
– Wi‑Fi (802.11a/b/g/n/ac).
– Bluetooth 4.2.
– Models with mobile network: 3G and LTE.
– GPS in models with mobile network.
– 64‑bit processor A9X. M9 motion coprocessor.
– Apple Pay.
– Siri.
– Battery life: up to 10 hours of surfing the web on Wi‑Fi, watching video, or listening to music.