Well, after I mentioned about paper books vs ebooks, lots of people added their comments and thoughts. It made for interesting reading – I think it was more or less an even split between people preferring paper books and people who liked to use both.
- But what I found interesting was some of the reasons people gave. For example:
If you use a computer a lot in the day, it’s easier to “switch off” with a paper book, rather than a different screen.
- Lots of people saying that they like paper books sometimes, but tablets/ebooks are great for holidays, so you can take lots with you. It’s a good point – not only does it mean you have enough books, but you can choose what you feel in the mood to read.
- On the other hand, of course, paper books don’t run out of battery! On most ebook readers or tablets, you can plug them in and use them while they charge, but the cables tend to be quite short, so it’s not always very convenient.
- Lots of people like browsing round second hand bookshops – and I agree. I like the randomness of what you find. That’s something you only do with paper books.
- One interesting point I hadn’t heard or thought of before is that with a paper book, it can be easier to remember something because you have a mental picture of which page it was on – left or right. I suppose you can also sometimes remember how far through the book it was, based on the thickness.
- Sometimes a particular paper book you’ve had for a while can have a story to it – where you got it or who gave it to you or where you were when you read it. Thinking about it, one of the first times I really talked to my wife was when I lent her a book. That copy of it is one I’d never want to get rid of now!
- The tablet is good, on the other hand, for reading in bed when you don’t want to turn on the light and wake your other half.
(If you go to the online version you can read the comments at the bottom of the article headed “Why John Le Carre left me with sore fingers” – and you can leave a comment on this article, too if you like.)
It’s interesting reading everyone’s comments – I certainly wouldn’t have thought of all these ideas myself.
A tip from a customer
Louize passed this tip on to me that a customer had mentioned: If you have an email that you want to save to your hard drive (perhaps because it has an attachment with it that you want to make sure you keep), and you’re using a program like Windows Live Mail you can tap the F12 key and it’ll bring up a save box. Choose where to save it (or just leave it as whatever it suggests) and click on save and that’s it – saved on your hard drive.
How to lose friends and alienate people – courtesy of Apple
I don’t know if you’ve ever used predictive text on a phone – where it tries to guess what word you’re typing.
It’s quite handy on a phone as it’s so fiddly to type that it can take ages otherwise.
And tablets use something a bit similar, to correct any slips. It’s a good idea in a way, because it’s very easy when typing on a smooth surface, to accidentally tap the wrong “key”.
But it doesn’t always work as well as it should. I get frustrated by the Apple iPad “correcting” things I’ve typed correctly. It seems to particularly struggle with apostrophes. If I leave them out, it adds them, usually correctly. So it does know how to use them. But if I put them in when I’m typing, it tends to assume I meant something else and completely change the meaning of what I said.
Android tablets seem maybe a little better – but you can still have a similar problem.
But I heard a particularly embarrassing one from someone I was talking to the other day. He was signing off an email “Kind Regards”. At least, that’s what he thought he signed it off as. But the iPad seemed to prefer “Kind Retards”.
Luckily the person he sent it to understood what had happened and saw the funny side. But my tip is if you write emails on a tablet of any kind, read it back after you’ve finished, just in case the device has changed what you’ve typed…
Anyone had any similar stories?