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Ask Slashdot: E-ink Reader For Academic Papers? 134

Albanach writes "Recently, I purchased an e-ink Kindle. I like real paper books, but I'm reading lots of academic papers. The Kindle is a nice way to carry and read them, and I went through several documents, highlighting important passages. Now I learn that there is no supported way to actually get a highlighted personal document back off of the Kindle with the highlights intact. I don't need lectures about DRM, proprietary software or anything else along those lines — there are other things the Kindle can and will be used for. What I would like to know is whether there's another e-ink reader that does let you add your own documents, then highlight them and export the altered document. Or does someone know of a way to achieve this using the Kindle itself?"
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Ask Slashdot: E-ink Reader For Academic Papers?

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  • by jaymz2k4 ( 790806 ) <jaymz@@@jaymz...eu> on Saturday February 15, 2014 @09:30AM (#46254057) Homepage
    I tried making use of a kindle for reading papers but in the end found the experience too clunky and cumbersome - especially with dual column PDFs. Instead I've ended up using a 7 inch tablet (nexus 7 in my case) and a good PDF reader (settled on ezPDF reader). My kindle wasn't touch enabled so that may have been part of it, but even then I found it easier and more reliable to load and annotate the PDF in a good reader on a tablet.
  • Calibre? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by karimicus ( 3538639 ) on Saturday February 15, 2014 @09:38AM (#46254085)
    If I remember right there's a function within calibre which detects the meta data from kindle/pdf formats and allows it to read the highlighted meta data
  • by PopeRatzo ( 965947 ) on Saturday February 15, 2014 @10:03AM (#46254157) Journal

    Don't ever let something like DRM get in the way of you getting your work done.

    Screw it. Use Calibre and root your Kindle. Strip out the DRM and get a proper reader app.

    There is no moral requirement for you to participate in corporate insanity.

    In the words of a great tech guru: "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law."

    And while we're at it, "All you have to do is be yourself, do your will, and rejoice."

  • by brxndxn ( 461473 ) on Saturday February 15, 2014 @10:10AM (#46254177)

    I have a little rant because I hate these little fucking problems like the OP is talking about. That is bullshit. What the fuck is the point of the highlighting feature if you cannot take it off and use it somewhere else? Seriously.. it would be like 4 hours of a Kindle programmers' time to implement that feature. I hate that shit.

    Also, fuck the cloud. Every company wants to create their little own proprietary cloud that envisions you being locked into their half-assed limited selection of crap. Microsoft Skydrive.. now I'm stuck with only using Microsoft. Everyone else is the same. Where the fuck is my cloud that works on any device and lets me store any document there. Maybe dropbox is the best so far.. but something tells me I cannot store my Kindle books, Nook books, Itunes, or any other media on that cloud. It's my fucking media.. Let me store it wherever the fuck I want on whatever the fuck device I want to store it on. Maybe the new Kindle sucks and some other company makes a better implementation. Let me move my shit there.

    Also, why the fuck can't all my devices just report back to a shared drive on my computer. Why can't I just have a 'pdb' (personal database) file that is constantly updating with any device I own. Let it encrypt the parts that need encryption. Let the interface pop up with a list of checkmarks and I (the GODDAMN USER THAT IS BUYING THIS CRAP) decide what I want my device to be able to access, copy, and modify out of my personal database. Seriously.. the idea that it's not just built-in to store files to a share drive on every new tablet and cell phone is as frustrating as watching someone try to be productive on Windows 8.

    This ones for Android.. let me tell the fucking device when to update! I don't want it updating my apps when I picked it up to quickly read a pdf. I don't need it trying to use my internet connection when I'm at some fucking remote site 3rd world country with barely any cell phone coverage deciding it needs to update some bloated app I never use.

    This one is for Windows.. updating when I want to turn off my laptop and telling me not to turn it off is retarded. Whoever decided that is the time to update should be slammed on the pavement like how Hulk smashed Loki.

    I have a lot more to rant about.. but I am going to take a vacation away from technology for the next few hours.

    I cannot believe people think we're innovating at this time.. We're taking 3 steps forward and 12 steps back. Fuck you, Kindle, for reminding me of this non-interchangeable mess that we call the technology world. Shit should work together. If we had a PDB that was universal (and with compatibility layers for all the proprietary shit - APPLE), then maybe the consumer wouldn't think it was such a pain in the ass to move to a new device.

  • Mobius (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jadrian ( 1150317 ) on Saturday February 15, 2014 @10:19AM (#46254201)
    The only one I know of is Sony's Mobius [gizmag.com], which was conceived specifically with academia in mind.
  • by gwolf ( 26339 ) <gwolf.gwolf@org> on Saturday February 15, 2014 @10:31AM (#46254251) Homepage

    There is a file called documents/My Clippings.txt if I'm not mistaken. Some time ago, I wrote a simple program (kindleclip — https://github.com/gwolf/kindl... [github.com] ) that presents you highlights, bookmarks and comments, allows you to search, either by book or by date. It's a GTK2 project built with Glade however, and I have not yet ported it to use current alternatives, but at least I believe the source to be quite readable/followable. Hope you find it useful.

  • Re:Short Evaluation (Score:5, Interesting)

    by buchner.johannes ( 1139593 ) on Saturday February 15, 2014 @01:25PM (#46255039) Homepage Journal

    I wrote a small script that takes research papers and splits them up if they have two columns. It tries to figure out when you have figures, and to strip away the header/footer etc. It produces epubs (which you can convert with Calibre)

          https://github.com/JohannesBuc... [github.com]

    The pages are first converted to images, the white spaces figured out, and the page sliced and diced. The linearized content is a sequence of page number, and rectangle definitions. You could make those into a pdf again, but I just stick to images and html (epub).

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