I have gone backwards and forwards many times over whether to buy books in print or electronically via Amazon Kindle. I think I’ve finally come to a conclusion though!
Many people who have switched to eBooks and their favourite ebook reader who I know do a lot of traveling. It makes sense to carry the books you want to read on a Kindle rather than in your suitcase or backpack, and of course with a Kindle device/app you have access to your entire catalogue of ebooks in case you want to re-read or reference something.
But there’s something about paper that I still like. There are certain situations when a paper book still beats an ebook.
The problem I have had with books is I read too many of them! Especially non-fiction. Quite often I would read a book, and after a week forgotten most things about it. I’m sure if there was something important it would be in the back of my memory waiting to jump out when it was needed – but I did kind of feel I was waisting my time doing all the reading. I tried underlining sections, keeping notes in the inside cover – but as soon as I finished the book and put it back on the shelf that was it. I didn’t pick it up to review those notes or highlights.
This is where Kindle really wins. All of the highlights and notes you make while reading with the Kindle app get stored and synchronized to http://kindle.amazon.com
Now once a week – usually first thing on a Monday I can click through and review all the highlights from the books I’ve read electronically and remember all the important points. A really good thing to do before you get yourself deep into the working week as you can remember what’s important to you and plan accordingly.
I don’t actually own a Kindle device yet. I’ve got an iPad 1.0 with the Kindle App installed, plus make use of the apps on my iPhone and Windows Phone 7.
I’m still not sure it’s a good idea to read on the iPad before bedtime – the bright light and all not being too good for you. I’ve also started reading more fiction before bedtime as well, which fits in nicely – so I’m probably going to stick to Kindle App for non-fiction, and paper for fiction and bedtime reading.
I can just dream that one day when you buy a paper version of a book you get the electronic version as well. If publishers want to stop amazon eating their dinner it’s something they should consider.