Author Archives: Klaava

About Klaava

The editor of klaava.com

In addition to ebooks, audiobooks, and paperbooks, there is yet another book format for readers to choose from

2019-01-20

We have seen this before: as a digital content product becomes mainstream, people who want something else, turn to an old, practically abandoned medium. For instance, think of MP3 music and the return of vinyl discs. Regarding books, papyrus scrolls were used until the 4th century in Europe. Now, papyrus scroll – a modern version – is making a comeback.
Ithaca Scrollery, modern papyrus scroll
Ithaca Scrollery is a beautiful, compact book printed on one long paper sheet. The entire sheet is rolled around a stick. Another stick is glued to the beginning of the book sheet. When you roll the stick, the text flows nicely forward (or backward if you rotate the other way).

This modern papyrus book requires handwork to make it a commercial product. The long sheet where the book content is printed on is made of special paper that is durable and doesn’t mind bending. The assembly of the two cases where the sticks are doing their job requires sharp eyes and precise fingers.
Ithaca Scrollery. modern version of papyrus medium
People behind the Ithaca Scrollery have built several working prototypes of the product. They were seeking crowdfunding to make the concept a commercial product, but in January 2019, the funding target was overwhelmingly achieved. So, it is possible to order a book, and read it like ancient Romans and Greeks did.

For 30 dollars, you get a classic book that is in public domain. Deliveries start in June 2019.
Ithaca Scrollery, book format like papyrus scroll
This could be a perfect gift for a book lover who already has bookshelves full of paperbooks, a Kindle ereader full of ebooks and a phone full of audiobooks.

View the video below for an introduction to the modern papyrus book:

Via Actualitte.

Travel guide to the city of contrasts: Valencia, Spain

2019-01-13

As long as Spanish people living in inland regions have had the means to travel somewhere warm, Valencia has been one of the most popular destinations. Over the years, Americans, tourists from other Europeans countries and recently also Asians have discovered Valencia’s charm. Some travelers arrive in Valencia for the historic city, others for the ultra-modern City of Arts and Sciences, others for the beaches, whereas some people want to join a genuine Spanish fiesta. Here is a travel guide to the city of Valencia that shows you where to visit, and what to do in this lively city.

cover image of book: Valencia, Spain

Valencia is often regarded as the home of paella (a rice dish) and also the place where the Holy Grail is on display (in the Cathedral). They are only two of the curiosities that can be easily found in the city.

Batman fans know that Gotham City refers to New York City. Yet, there are very few – if any – signs or symbols of bats in New York City. There is, however, a city in Europe where bat is the key symbol: Valencia, on the Mediterranean coast of Spain. When exploring Valencia, look closely, and you’ll find bat symbols on the facades of buildings, towers, and even on the streets.
bat symbol in Valencia, Spain, Europe
Valencia, Spain – The Key Sights, Places, and Events covers the information a visitor needs on a city break, or during a vacation when there is enough time to explore also sights outside the city.

Spanish culture and customs are slightly different to the rest of Europe. The Iberian Peninsula was ruled by Arabs for five centuries, after all, and the long dictatorship of Franco ended only in 1975. The travel guide highlights the elements of the Spanish culture that travelers are likely encounter.
Plaza de la Virgen in Valencia, Spain, Europe
If you are already thinking what would be the best time to visit, here are a few tips. Summer months tend to be quite warm and very humid, which is why people escape to the beach or to the mountains in summer. If you want to join the biggest fiesta you have ever seen, the Fallas in March is your choice. Every weekend around the year is party time in the old city center, and every day is an exciting day in the City of Arts and Sciences. For outdoor activities, or exploring the city on foot or by bicycle, autumn, winter and spring are perfect seasons.

The Valencia, Spain travel guide book is available for download in all major online bookstores, for instance: Amazon.com, Google Play Books, and Kobo.

Valencia, Spain: city of arts and sciences
a main street in the city street leads to Plaza de la Reina in Valencia, Espana
All photos from the Klaava Travel Guide Valencia, Spain.

If you love libraries, take a look at this

2019-01-06

People who like to read books, naturally like to visit bookshops and libraries. Sometimes it is only to find out if there is anything new that catches the eye, or to check if an interesting book has mysteriously appeared to a shelf. Then, there are people who love libraries so much that they have dedicated an entire web site for these wonders of civilization.
Royal library in Copenhagen, DenmarkRoyal library in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Library Planet‘s mission is to create a guide to the libraries of the world. Since there are a few of them around the globe, Library Planet relies on crowdsourcing. The site has already managed to get a large number of library introductions to its pages.

At the moment, the majority of library stories are from Europe, but all continents are represented on the site. Maybe the reason for having so many articles from Europe is that there are simply so many magnificent libraries in the old continent, or the founders of Library Planet happen to come from Denmark.

Anyone can contribute an article that introduces a library to the site. The process is simple. Send your story with photos to the Library Planet, and they will edit and publish it. The founders are also planning to publish a book of the introduced libraries once they have enough articles.
Library in Tromsö, NorwayTromsö library in Norway.

The Spanish way of celebrating Christmas: a night out in Valencia

2018-12-20

In the Western world, Christmas traditions are similar in many countries: presents, Santa Claus, colorful lights, reindeer, Christmas tree, and songs about a peaceful celebration of the darkest time of the year in the northern hemisphere. In Spain, Christmas is not necessarily the number one festivity of the year. Here is how people in the city of Valencia celebrate it.
ice-skating at town hall square in Valencia, Spain, Europe
Valencia is Spain’s third largest city with more than a million inhabitants in the metropolitan area. The origins of the city are in the era of the Roman Empire that settled military personnel on the banks of the Turia River. Even though Valencia is increasingly attracting tourists from across the world, it remains a genuine Spanish city. It has its unique culture, traditions, and big fiestas, like Fallas (in March) and Los Reyes Magos (in January).
Valencia town hall with christmas lights
You can find out more about the fiestas of Valencia in Klaava Travel Guide to Valencia, Spain. The top sights, attractions, and cultural tips are introduced in the guidebook as well.

Although Christmas is not the flashiest and loudest fiesta in Valencia (or in Spain), it is a perfect excuse to go out and spend a night out in the city center.

Shops and department stores are open late, swarming with customers. Cafes and restaurants are so busy that queues may form outside the most popular ones. If the world’s biggest lottery El Gordo hasn’t been announced yet, people queue to the kiosks that sell lottery tickets.
A popular cafe serves traditional Horchata drink
Traditional herbal shop in Valencia at Carrer de la Pau.
In Valencia, two destinations attract the biggest crowds: Plaza de la Reina and Plaza de Ayuntamiento.

The famous Cathedral of Valencia stands at the north end of the Plaza de la Reina, and that’s where the traditional Nativity Scene is set up. These Nativity Scenes are constructed every Christmas in every city, town and village.

Plaza de Ayuntamiento is a large Town Hall Square that has plenty of action during Christmas. The Town Hall and many other buildings have been lit up, as well as the fountain. Something that you probably don’t expect to find on the sunny Mediterranean coast of Spain – an ice-skating rink – has been built on the square. Courageously, Valencians test themselves on the ice as others cheer skaters on from the sides.

Some places in the old city center of Valencia can be crowded during the evenings and nights of Christmas, but there is always a seat and a table in a restaurant or bar a short walk away from the busiest areas.

travel guide to Valencia, Spain, South Europe

Inkbook Explore ereader with 7.8-inch screen, Android and PDF reflow feature

2018-11-27

Two important developments took place in the ereader product market in 2018: Android operating system is powering most new devices, and the screens have grown to eight or ten inches in size. These development trends are good news for ebook lovers because they allow larger fonts, nice layouts for comics, anime and comfortable reading of PDF documents. The Inkbook Explore e-reader comes with 7.8-inch E Ink screen, frontlight and Android software.
InKbook Explore ereader on desk
Inkbook hasn’t taken any risks with the Explorer product, but the device relies on proven technologies and solutions. The 7.8-inch screen is sharp (300 dots per inch), and it comes with a frontlight that has light temperature adjustment.

The conservative approach to the product design is evident also in the choice of Android software version that is 4.4.2. It is relatively old version, but it is still possible to install many Android apps from the app store to the device.
Inkbook Explore ebook reader device, 7.8 inch screen
The included ebook reader application has a valuable feature for people who have to read PDF documents. PDF was designed for print which can make them difficult to read on a small screen. 7.8 inches is a good screen size but if you still want to make the text large in an PDF document, the Inkbook Explorer has a feature known as reflow. It means the lines and pages of an PDF are automatically adjusted to fit to the screen.

The Inkbook Explore is available in a number of brick-and-mortar electronics and bookstores in Europe and in the US, and also online at the vendor’s web shop. The list price is 239 euros.

Key features and specifications of the Inkbook Explore e-reader

Inkbook Explore e-reader front and back sides
7.8-inch EInk screen, resolution 1024×768 pixels, 300 DPI pixel density.
Front-light with light color temperature management.
Android 4.4.2 operating system.
i.MX6SL processor.
1 GB of RAM.
8 GB of internal storage space.
MicroSD memory card slot up to 32 GB cards for additional storage.
Bluetooth. Can be used for listening audiobooks on Bluetooth loudspeakers or headphones.
Wi-Fi (802.11b/g/n).
Micro-USB 2.0 port.
Included apps: Library (Books), Internet browser, Midiapolis Drive, Bookshop, Midiapolis News Reader, App Store.
User interface languages English, German, Spanish, French, Italian, Polish, Romanian and Czech.
Compatible formats for documents and books: EPUB, PDF (reflow) with Adobe DRM (ADEPT), MOBI (without DRM), TXT, FB2, HTML, RTF, CHM.
PDF documents can be read as they are, or the reading app can adjust the rows and pages for the screen (PDF reflow).
3000 mAh Li-ION Polymer battery.
Dimensions 192×140×9 mm.
Weight 243 g.

Via The Ebook Reader.

Top 5 must-see historical places in the city of contrasts: Valencia, Spain

2018-10-27

Our travel guidebook author has explored the ins and outs of the city of Valencia in Spain, and this is his conclusion: Valencia is a city of contrasts, an exciting destination even for travelers who think they have seen it all. The ancient city center with majestic buildings and ancient shops and bars is simply remarkable. A fifteen minute walk away from the old town, the ultra-modern City of Arts and Sciences drops the jaw of any globetrotter. These are the five top sights in the historical city center of Valencia in Spain.

The top 5 sights have been extracted from the travel guidebook Valencia, Spain – The Key Sights, Places and Events (published in Klaava Travel Guide book series). The text has been edited for this blog post.

Plaza de la Virgen

Plaza de la Virgen in the old town of Valencia, Spain, Europe
Plaza de la Virgen is a home for a number of key buildings in the city. It is not a coincidence, because the plaza is the former center of the city. The town hall used to stand at the west side of the plaza. During the Roman era, the square was a Roman Forum, a central place in the city.

The key historical buildings around the square are:

Basilica Virgen de los Desamparados
Cathedral
Palau de la Generalitat
The fountain at the square is a new work of art, revealed in 1976.

Plaza de la Virgen is a meeting place for Valencians, a central place for many fiestas and one of the sights that attracts plenty of tourists who like to snap selfies in front of the fountain.

La Lonja

La Lonja, Valencia, Spain
The original purpose of La Lonja building (opened in 1533) was trading. It may not sound like an exciting, soul-stirring experience, but judge after you have seen it yourself. Nevertheless, La Lonja was built for merchants who arrived in Valencia to negotiate about silk produced in the region. The city wanted to impress merchants, and invested in the architecture of the building.

Pere Compte and Joan Ibarra were the architects who conducted the work for 50 years. Today, La Lonja is a Unesco World Heritage site.

Barrio del Carmen neighborhood

Barrio del Carme, Valencia in South Europe, Spain
Barrio del Carmen is the oldest district of Valencia where many buildings are so old that they can’t stand straight anymore. This part of the city used to stand on an island in Turia River. As the city expanded south, the south side of the island was connected to the mainland. The entire river was diverted away from the city center in 1956.

The Carmen neighborhood shows its age in many ways. Houses are small, many of them are worn down, and alleys are more narrow than in other parts of the city. Near Plaza del Tossal, a number of restaurants and bars keep the nearby streets busy all day and night.

Plaza de Ayuntamiento

Plaza de Ayuntamiento in Valencia on the Mediterranean coast
The buildings around the Town Hall Square are big, tall and decorated around the largest square in central Valencia.

It wasn’t always like that. Until late 19th century, Convento de San Francisco, a monastery, covered the space that is today the Town Hall Square. The city wanted to move the town hall to a more spacious place away from Plaza de la Virgen, and when the monastery couldn’t maintain its property anymore, it was demolished. The new central square of Valencia was established, and the Town Hall moved to a large school building overlooking the plaza.

Facades of many other beautiful buildings line the square, like

Correos (Post Office),
Ateneo Mercantil and
Teatro Rialto.

Plaza de Ayuntamiento is also a central place of many big fiesta events, such as Fallas.

Torres de Serranos: medieval towers and gate to the city

Torres de Serranos during Fallas fiesta party event
Valencia has had fortified walls around it three times during its long history. Only two gates have survived the third wall: Torres de Serranos and Torres de Quart. In addition to being watchtowers, they are also gates where entrance to the city was controlled.

For tourists, Torres de Serranos is the primary destination because it is located near Plaza de la Virgen and the Cathedral.
The massive towers were built in 1392-1398. It is possible to ascend to the tower to see the city from a bird’s view, but even taller towers that let you see over the roofs of the city are, for instance, in Santa Catalina Church and in the Ateneo building.

More about the travel guide Valencia, Spain here download ebook travel guide to Valencia, Spain

Artificial intelligence computer software is already helping authors write fiction books

2018-10-22

Writers who know how to create computer software have tried to develop applications that can write for years. Earlier, we reported about automatic and semi-automatic tools that can write simple news reports and structure scientific papers. Now, fiction author Robin Sloan has developed a smart and simple tool that feeds him text when he wants ideas.
two computer monitors chatting
The New York Times visited Robin Sloan who demonstrated his idea generator-application to the reporter. This is what The Times reporter saw on the author’s computer screen.

Here is how a computer writes fiction

Mr Sloan typed in his tool: The bison have been traveling for two years back and forth. He stopped and pushed a button on the keyboard. The computer thought for a second and printed on the screen: between the main range of the city.
Another sample: The bison are gathered around the canyon. Sloan typed, and pushed a button that woke up the helper application. After a brief moment, the computer added the words by the bare sky to the screen.

The definition of artificial intelligence (AI) is broad and flexible, but Mr Sloan’s writing assistant software could be called machine learning or even a bot (for more about the AI and ML definitions, read this). The application looks at a few sentences that have been typed before the magic button was pushed, searches its database for matching phrases and suggests a few words that might fit into the context.
Robin Sloan writing tool, screen shot
Robin Sloan's software
Robin Sloan himself regards his application as a collaborator that makes his work actually harder and helps him produce different results than he alone might have been able to achieve. Sloan has made his software available (consisting of two components: torch-rnn-server and rnn-writer) for other tinkerers to try out.

So, artificial intelligence software applications are not going to write fiction books in the near future. But what about nonfiction?

Nonfiction writers may get help from AI as well

South China Morning Post reports about the AI research group of Alibaba, China’s biggest online commerce company, which has developed a machine-learning software that beats humans. It was tested with the Stanford Question Answering Dataset, and scored higher in the large-scale reading comprehension test than humans. Alibaba’s machine-learning software scored 82.44 on the test, compared with 82.30 that humans achieved.

The chief scientist behind the software believes that computers can now answer questions such as “what causes rain?” with a high level of accuracy. “We believe the technology can be applied to numerous applications such as customer service, museum tutorials, and patient inquiries online.”

Nonetheless, the Alibaba scientist reminded that the system currently works reliably with questions that have straightforward answers. If the question’s language or expressions are vague or the grammar is incorrect, or a prepared answer is missing, the software may not be able to answer correctly.

A software technology that Alibaba’s research has developed would be a great help for nonfiction writers, editors, and fact-checkers. All those small (and big) facts and details that just have to be correct in a commercial book could be verified by a piece of software.

Having access to this technology might shorten the time to write a nonfiction book.
Alibaba screen shot

Onyx Boox Nova ereader comes with sharp 7.8 screen and Android software

2018-10-17

Even though ebook reader device manufacturers are not abandoning small 6-inch products, the innovation has moved to larger devices. 7.8, 8 and 10 inches are the ereader product sizes that manufacturers are bringing to that markets. Onyx Boox Nova (and its handwriting-capable cousin Boox Nova Plus) comes with sharp 7.8 E ink screen and Android software.
Onyx Boox Nova with PDF document on screen
A key feature in the Onyx Boox Nova is that it is running on Android operating system. Among other things, it means that it is possible to download and run Android apps on the e-reader. All Android application won’t run properly on an ereader because hardware is slightly different to tablets or smartphones.

Onyx has recognized this, and has decided to supply a dedicated App Store for E Ink devices with the Boox Nova. This is quite remarkable. Let’s hope the selection of applications is sufficient so that ebook readers can find their favorite apps in the store.

The frontlight in the Boox Nova can be switched on and off (to save battery), and the warmth of the light can be adjusted as well. There is no memory card slot, but the product comes with ample 32GB of storage space.
Onyx Boox Nova ereader user interface
The ereader can transmit audio to loudspeakers via Bluetooth. If you have portable Bluetooth speakers, you can listen to audiobooks saved in the Boox Nova through the speakers.

The Boox Nova and the Boox Nova Plus are two different products. There are only two features that make them different, everything else in these products is the same. The Boox Nova has a frontlight, but you can’t draw or write directly on the screen. The Boox Nova Plus doesn’t come with front light, but it comes with stylus that lets you write on the screen.

Onyx products can be ordered from Amazon stores. Check your local Amazon for the price and availability.

Notebook Italia recorded a video clip (below) where an Onyx marketing representative introduces the Boox Nova.

Key features and specifications of the Onyx Boox Nova

Onyx Boox Nova with Android 6 operating system

7.8-inch HD Eink Carta screen. Capacitive touch.
Screen resolution 1872 x 1404 pixels, 300 dots per inch (dpi), 16 gray scale.
Cortex-A17 1.6GHz Quad-core.
2GB RAM.
32GB of storage.
Front light with warm and cold shade control.
Wi-Fi.
Bluetooth 4.1.
USB-C port.
Android 6.0 operating system.
Ebooks and documents: EPUB, PDF, TXT, DJVU, HTML, RTF, FB2, DOC, MOBI. It can open DRM-protected ebooks.
Audio files that can be listened:WAV, MP3.
Buttons: back, power.
2800mAh Li-Polymer battery.
Dimensions 196 × 137 × 7.7 mm.
Weight 240 gr.

8-inch ereader Kobo Forma has been designed to stand a knock or two

2018-10-07

Kobo was one of the first companies to market larger than six inch e-readers, and it also has pioneered in bringing features like frontlight and waterproof shells to devices. Now, Kobo has introduced a high-end ereader with 8 inch screen, front light, and rugged features that the company believes will keep the device intact in diverse reading environments and during travels.
Kobo Forma 8-inch e-reader
For an eight-inch ereader, the Forma is truly light. In fact, it is lighter than some smaller ereaders. The reason is that plastic components have been used in the product to keep the weight down and to make it more rugged. Even the screen, consisting of E ink Mobius technology, is made of plastic.

The result is a device that has a bit of flexibility. This means that the Forma can take some knocks without breaking apart or without precious screen shattering into pieces (because it is a plastic screen). The product is also waterproof down to two meters deep water.

A design decision that instantly catches the eye is that the Kobo Forma looks like the product has been meant to be held in landscape position. It just looks so natural in landscape. Ebook readers who like to have large fonts on the screen will find landscape comfortable. Naturally, it can be held upright so that the keys are on the left hand or right hand side as well. The display rotates automatically.
waterproof Kobo Forma e-reading device

Which features explain the price of the Kobo Forma?

The Kobo Forma is priced at USD 279 / 279 euros / GBP 239. The SleepCover case & stand costs USD 49 / 49 euros / GBP 39.
Kobo Forma SleepCover case & stand SleepCover case and stand for Kobo Forma
Kobo highlights that the Forma is designed to be a durable ereader. The Mobius technology used in the display has a flexible plastic layer. This makes the thin and lightweight device to withstand the wear and tear of daily use. In tests, the Kobo Forma has survived drops of more than two meters, as well as bends, twists, dangerous objects in handbags, and pressures in tightly loaded backpacks.

Below you can view a hands-on video review of the Kobo Forma (at 1 –> 8 minutes, and a comparison with the 7-inch Kindle Oasis from minute 8 onwards):

Kobo Forma 8-inch e-reader key features and specifications

Kobo Forma ereader has 8-inch plastic E ink screen
– 8.0 inch screen in 1440 × 1920 resolution (300 PPI).
– Frontlight with adjustable color temperature (ComfortLight Pro).
– Waterproof down to 2 meters deep water for 60 minutes (IPX8).
– Wi Fi 802.11 b/g/n,
– Micro USB port.
– Internal storage space 8 GB.
– TypeGenius font system: 11 different fonts and over 50 font styles with font weight and sharpness settings.
– 14 ebook and document file formats: EPUB, EPUB3, PDF, MOBI, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP, TIFF, TXT, HTML, RTF, CBZ, CB.
– Languages: English, French, German, Spanish, Dutch, Italian, Brazilian, Portuguese, Japanese, Turkish.
– Weight 197 gr.
– Size 160 x 178 x 8.5 mm (thickness at gripping area) and 4.2 (thickness at the thinner side).
– Battery 1200 mAh, weeks of battery life in normal use, but it primarily depends on the Wi-Fi and front light usage.

The key differences between 10-inch tablets and 10-inch ereaders

2018-09-22

Small e-reader devices with 6-inch E ink displays are still around, and new models are continuously introduced, but new development is happening elsewhere. Recently, 7.8 and 10-inch ereaders have adopted so many new features that it is time to examine what really is the difference between an 8 or 10-inch tablet and an ereader of the same size.

This comparison considers both the Amazon Kindle and EPUB reading devices as ereaders, and both Android and Apple 8 or 10-inch devices as tablets, because the purpose is to study the principal differences of product categories, not individual products.
Amazon Kindle e-reader in sunshine

Display

Tablets come with LCD or LED screen that can display bright colors (up to 16 million different). High-end tablets have sharp displays whereas budget tablets can have quite low resolution displays. Nonetheless, the tablet displays are excellent for watching movies, photos, web pages and reading nonfiction books or textbooks with illustrations.
E ink screens used in reading devices can only display black and white, and a few shades of grey. They are optimized for text. It works so well that many book lovers prefer ereaders instead of paper and ink. On the downside, viewing video clips is not even possible on most ereaders, and photos don’t look very nice.

Processing power

Since ereaders have been optimized for displaying text, the required processing power has been minimal. This is changing with 10-inch ereaders. Because many large screen models can accept handwritten input and they run Android software, more powerful processors have been introduced to new ereaders.
Generally speaking, tablets have more processing power because they are multipurpose devices, capable of, for instance, playing and recording video.

Storage

Storage capacity in tablets and ereaders typically consist of two separate spaces: storage space inside the device (it is fixed in size and can’t be changed) and a memory card slot where you can insert a card of your choice. No meaningful differences between ereaders and tablets.

Connectivity

Wi-Fi for wireless internet access is a vital connectivity feature, and it is included both in tablets and ereaders. Usually, a USB port is featured for charging and for PC connection as well.
The key difference is that it is possible to order some tablet models with a mobile network connection (3G or 4G), whereas ereaders don’t have this option (if you know one, let us know).

Reading

Ereaders were designed for reading. The display technology successfully imitates paper and ink. The display doesn’t flicker once the text has been rendered on the screen. The introduction of built-in light that allows reading in poorly lit conditions finally made ereaders products that can be used anywhere, from dark bedroom to direct sunlight. Many features make reading comfortable, such as changing font size and type, search, and possibility to make notes.
The display technology in tablets is the same as in laptop computers. The colors are bright and beautiful that help when reading, for instance, an illustrated nonfiction book or textbook. Some experts regard long hours of reading from a screen that emits light and flickers potentially harmful, but the fact is that office workers and freelancers stare at laptop and tablet screens for long working hours. Reading applications available for tablets have similar features as ereaders.
Inkbook Infinity, 10.3-inch e-reader - writing tablet

Writing

Few people acquire a tablet or ereader for writing alone, but both can be used to typing notes and jotting down drafts.
Some high-end tablets come with wireless keyboards, and other tablets can connect to Bluetooth keyboards for typing. For instance, Apple iPad Pro has sophisticated features for writing with stylus.
Writing is the hot feature that new 10-inch ereader devices have introduced to the world recently. No more are e-readers for reading alone, but it is possible to write down notes, drafts, and draw images with a stylus. This changes the original purpose of the product. For instance, Sony regards its 10-inch model DPT-CP1 a tool for office workers who can store their documents in the device, read, and annotate them on the screen.
We believe also researchers and writers can use a 10-inch ereader that is running on Android software for collecting information, storing documents, saving voice notes, annotating documents, jotting down notes, and writing drafts on a device.

Music, photos, video

Tablets are excellent for music playback, as well as for video and photo viewing. Many tablets have stereo sound, and a headphone jack for enjoying audiobooks, podcasts and music. Videos and photos are a pleasure to view on color screen.
Most ereaders have an MP3 player application for listening to audiobooks and music. Video viewing is not possible, and photos don’t look good.

Social media

Tablets are ideal devices for social media. It is easy follow multiple social channels, view photos, videos, and update personal comments to newsfeeds. All social media services are available for tablets.
Ereaders that are powered by Android software can connect to social media services if a respective application runs on the device. Videos are not available, and photos don’t look very nice in grayscale. Old ereaders without Android can not access social media services.

Indoors

Tablet screens provide their own light, making it possible to use them indoors in brightly lit rooms and in dark corners.
Modern ereader devices come with frontlight that makes the black-and-white screen visible even in dark. Beware of old ereader models that don’t have frontlight at all.

Outdoors

Tablets can be used outdoors, but shade is required. No matter how bright the screen is, direct sunlight will make it unreadable. Also reflections on the screen disturb viewing.
E ink screens used in ereaders are exceptional in sunshine: it is easier to read on an ereader than a printed book, magazine or newspaper.
Kindle Fire HD tablet

Applications

Millions of applications are available for tablets at Apple App Store and Google Play. The possibility to download applications is a remarkable advantage because it allows you to enhance the functionality of the device.
Traditional ereading devices were closed systems where it was impossible to install new apps, but new ereaders that are running on Android operating system make it possible to download apps (all apps won’t work, but many do).

Battery

Battery life in ereader devices is so long that you may almost forget about it. The special screen in ereaders requires very little power, making it possible to use a device for weeks without recharge.
Tablets must be recharged after a day or two, naturally depending on the usage. The primary reason is the color screen that consumes plenty of energy in a tablet.

Price

10-inch tablet prices range from 100 to 1500 dollars/euros. Low-end tablets are made of cheap plastics, whereas high-end tablets have been designed to replace powerful laptops, raising their prices considerably.
10-inch ereaders typically cost 300-600 dollars/euros.
Onyx Boox Note 10.3 inch reader for note taking, drawing

More information on large screen ereaders

Bouye Likebook Note
Icarus Illumina XL6
Sony DPT-CP1
Onyx Boox Note
Onyx Boox Max2
Pocketbook Inkpad 3
Ereaders with 8 inch screens

Who creates the titles for books and how?

2018-09-07

A good book title triggers so much curiosity that a reader wants to grab the book right away and read what it is all about. Of course, a book with a boring title (for instance, Gone with the Wind, or Brideshead Revisited) can become a bestseller, but then, other factors in the book and its marketing have succeeded better than the title creator.

bookstore inside department store
Klaava has contributed to many ebook projects, and in these cases, the majority of book titles have been created by the authors. The vast majority of the titles authors finally settled with, however, were not the first ones they suggested.

After discussing the importance of the title with an author, throwing ideas into the air, and digging deep into the key theme of the book, authors usually discover a title that everyone is happy with.

The process of discovering a title is roughly the same for a nonfiction and fiction book. The purpose of the title slightly differs: nonfiction can be descriptive whereas fiction should be exciting.

Rare books dealer Jonkers has published an infographic that explains how titles for a number of classics were created. Also in the case of classics, some titles were suggested by authors, some by publishers, and some were discovered in collaboration.

classic book titles, infographic by Jonkers
Infographic by Jonkers Rare Books.

Some of the classics mentioned in the infographic:

George Orwell’s 1984 was originally The Last Man in Europe.
William Golding’s Lord of the Flies was Strangers from Within.
Charles Dicken’s Little Dorrit original name was Nobody’s Fault.
Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice originally was First Impressions.
F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby was Trimalchio in West Egg.

Books are the core element for creative industries, such as movies, television and theater

2018-08-10

After a movie screening, we all have heard talk among the audience: “This time, the movie really was better than the book”, “I have to read the book”, or “The book was much richer than the movie”. The thing is that it doesn’t matter. In all these cases, a book has been the starting point, the core element, for presenting a story. The Publishers Association in the UK argues that movies and plays based on books attract audiences and generate revenue more convincingly than productions created from other sources.

ballerinas watching at stage in a theater
The Publishers Association has published a report Publishing’s Contribution to the Wider Creative Industries that studies the relationship of business success and popularity among audiences of books, movies, television and theater.

The report has drawn data from academic research, sales numbers and case studies. The key points the report makes are:

Movies based on books make more money than movies based on original screenplays.
Television shows adapted from books attract more viewers than other shows.
Theater plays and musicals rewritten from books make more money than other plays.
Books are a key source of content for movies, television and theater.

Would it be possible that one book series – Harry Potter – has affected to the sales and audience numbers so much that it has skewed the statistics. The Publishers Association’s report doesn’t go in that level of detail, but Harry Potter was the reason for increasing book sales in many markets during the book series’ heydays.
Publishers Association UK, report summarySource: The Publishers Association (UK).
The report concludes (among other points):

Works of fiction and non-fiction are a repository of stories to be discovered by producers, agents and scouts looking for ideas.
Book publishers act as a filter for quality storytelling and help polish and edit manuscripts into fully formed, engaging stories.
Publishers alleviate some of the inherent risk of a screen or stage production by investing in publication of the book, and allowing producers to choose stories which have already shown the ability to engage audiences.
The visibility of a book can make it easier to market an adaptation, using the original, already familiar brand.

What about self-published ebooks, like Hugh Howey’s works, 50 Shades of Grey, or The Martian that have become global success stories? They are a proof that it is possible to bypass the publisher filtering system. It is possible, but really difficult to do and it is rare that it happens, but some cases break through.

The key insight from the Publishers Association’s report is that books really are the centerpieces of content for many media industries. Not only movies, television and theater, but also games and music are often inspired by books.

Via Publishing Perspectives.