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Posts Tagged ‘reading’

Physical Books & Links In Them. There Has To Be A Better Way!

April 1, 2012 4 comments

stacked-books-for-research-in-a-library

These days whenever I read a book that is on serious subject matter – as opposed to a novel – I notice there are a whole ton of links mentioned or footnoted over the course of the read. It’s great for learning more after you’re done reading, or even between chapters, but the problem for those of us who still like reading physical books is that those links aren’t clickable. For me, a person who loves to read physical books, it is often not an attractive prospect to be required to pull out a phone or tablet or go to a computer while reading a book. The other options, as far as I know, are to:

  1. Write down the link or links on a piece of paper and remember to look them up after you’re done reading that chapter.
  2. Bookmark the book on every page that has a link and remember to look it up later.
  3. Take a picture with your phone/tablet/camera of the footnote. Then, when you sync the pictures with your computer just read the links off the photographed pages.
  4. (If you can think of another option please let me know below and I’ll add it here.)

This problem also rears its head when reading a magazine these days. Especially, in my experience, I have found this to be an issue when reading tech publications. Of course, many magazines have links mentioned in them during stories/articles in reference to people and places mentioned or just to read more or see/hear additional audio-video on the subject being discussed.

URL Link in a book's footnote

My Solution

I have an idea which solves this problem in what is a pretty simple and cost effective way. Everyone and everything these days has a website and of course books are on that list. Authors and/or publishers can solve this issue easily by having a page on their sites with the list of links mentioned in the book. Make the existence of this links page clear in the beginning of the book and the end of it, maybe even throw in a reminder or two over the course of the book in the footnotes. The page would take a minimal amount of resources to create, run and host because it would be pretty much all text. As well, it could be organized by chapter so it can be easy for anyone to access repeatedly and find the links quickly while they read the book.

In terms of a magazine, the links can be organized based on the date of the magazine on the magazine’s website. If need be, there can be a code written into the magazine on one of the pages for people who have bought it to access the links and extended info. However, I don’t think it is really all that necessary because we aren’t talking about things that are in the magazine being printed, just links. You’d still have to buy the magazine to read the full article and understand the link in context.

What do you think? Is that not reasonable? I am surprised no authors or book, magazine, and even newspaper publishers have started doing this yet. Seems pretty simple and would give more value to the customers still buying their materials in physical print.

Let me know what you think in the comments below!

Top picture of stacked books via Microsoft Office Clipart.

Book with a link in it pictured above is “UnMarketing: Stop Marketing. Start Engaging.” by Scott Stratten.

Pre-Holiday Trip To The Library!

December 22, 2011 5 comments

Today, I stopped off at my local library because a Harry Turtledove book I had ordered was in and waiting for me. While I was there I did a little wandering and found two more books. I am stockpiling these books as the holidays season approaches. I will be well prepared for a whole ton of reading this holiday season. There are only so many television show marathons and movies a man can watch after all! More books I ordered are on the way too! I am excited.

Much As I LOVE Tech: There’s Nothing Like Reading A Physical Book

December 11, 2011 5 comments

bookshelf full of books

I love to read books. I have been reading ‘adult books’ (not that kind, you perverts!) since my mom gave me “The Client” by John Grisham when I was 10. As I mentioned in a previous article, I love Harry Turtledove books so you can see them represented in the picture above. I recently picked up the Steve Jobs biography by Walter Isaacson which everyone says is fantastic and the new Stephen King book “11/22/63″ which is an alternate history book about what might have happened if JFK hadn’t been killed in Dallas that fateful day in 1963 as suggested by my man  aka @FunkyBarrister on Twitter.

Steve Jobs biography & Stephen King 11-22-63

I am also in the midst of reading “Poke The Box” by Seth Godin which is so far really, really good too. But it has been a long while since I have been reading more than one book at once. Heck, it has been a long time since I have actually read one physical book. Used to be I went from one book to the next and then to the next (and usually was reading more than one at once). As the years have progressed I have found myself staring at screens more often than not and rarely sitting down and reading an actual book. When I went to the Kobo Office Party I opined how much I liked the idea of the Kobo and having all your books with you at all times but at the same time I don’t know that anything can ever, in my mind, replace a physical book. There is just something about the ink and physically turning those pages that a reader just cannot replace.

As I typed the above I am aware that I sort of sound like people who maintain that listening to a record the music sounds ‘warmer’ and ‘more alive.’ Read more…

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