I don’t think I’ve ever downloaded a free Kindle book from Amazon, but I’ve seen some of my Facebook friends mention that they regularly read free Kindle books. I recently received a tip through my contact form, suggesting a site that lists over 33,000 free Kindle books.
Editor’s note: Today, 40Tech is pleased to present you with a guest post from Annabelle of Godot Media.
Pink seems to be the color on everyone’s minds, with men and women alike choosing fancy and cheap pink e-readers over the usual white, black or silver colored e-readers. Besides features and functionality, aesthetics is an important consideration for buyers of laptops, e-readers and other computing devices. Though not many brands have color options when it comes to e-book readers, there are a few manufacturers like Sony, Bookeen, Cool-er etcetera who do offer cheap e-readers in many colors including pink. For those who want to check reviews and compare deals on ‘pink readers’, here is some information on the different brands that have pink e-readers for sale.
Among the most popular electronic book reader brands, Sony has pink e-readers that are slim, light-weight and small enough to fit into your pocket easily. Available in rose-pink and silver color, this e-book reader has an easy to use touch-screen, a glare-free screen that enables hours of stress free reading, 12 built-in dictionaries, abundant memory space and long battery life that can keep you reading for almost 2 weeks with a single charge.
You can buy cheap pink e-readers from Bookeen, which is a less known French company offering eBook readers to users around the world. The e-readers offered by this company are available in seven different colors, including pink, black and white. Compatible with Linux operating system, Bookeen e-readers are available in grayscale, with a 5” screen that also enables daylight reading, a USB drive, G-sensor motion detector and a battery that can run for almost 2 weeks after charging it.
Cool-er is the brand name for an eBook reader by the UK based company called Interead. Marketed as the iPod of the E-reader world, this small, light-weighted pink e-reader is available in eight different shades including hot pink and cool pink. The cool-er is compatible with windows and MAC operating systems, can store up to 4000 eBooks with expandable memory, and supports many formats of electronic books including FB2 and RTF. The added benefit of a cool-er is that you can share e-books with up to five people for free.
The Canadian based manufacturer Kobo Inc., may not have an exact pink e-reader computer but offers a closer shade of pink – the porcelain or pearlized lilac. Available only with grayscale display, this e-reader has Wi-Fi connectivity, expandable memory, long battery life and a built-in dictionary.
Besides buying cheap pink e-readers from the above mentioned brands, the cheapest way to get a pink e-reader is by converting your existing black, white or silver colored e-reader to pink with the help of e-reader accessories. For the Amazon Kindle that is available mostly in black or graphite white, you can find silicon and leather cases in various shades of pink, while Barnes and Noble offers a ‘grapefruit pink’ silicon frame to make its ‘Nook’ even more attractive.
Although the original pink e-reader brands are a bit highly priced in comparison to the white or black models, you can get the best prices on pink e-readers from the many exciting deals and offers that are available in the market.
Author bio: Annabelle is a senior technology writer with content writing service firm Godot Media (Twitter Godot Media). She has interests ranging from latest gadgets to following web technologies and trends. She has also ghost written several eBooks as a part of the eBook writing service team at Godot Media.
Just over two years ago, I wrote my first post for 40Tech. I had discovered the power of GTD while trying to manage life, new parenthood, and the crazy tech-startup marketing job I was working. I had also become an avid fan of Evernote. The mere idea that I could capture anything, anywhere, and put it in a searchable digital filing cabinet that I could carry in my pocket was mind-blowing for me. Naturally, I spent a large amount of time and effort in marrying together my two new obsessions. They seemed a great fit to me, and they lead to that fateful first post that is still one of the top articles on this blog: GTD in Evernote With Only One Notebook.
I say this post was fateful for two reasons: one, it set me on a path of productivity and tech that has, in many ways, defined my current career path; and two, it brought about a tremendous amount of great conversation and connections with people I likely would never have met, otherwise. One of those people was Daniel Gold, lifestyle and productivity blogger, and author of the eBook this post is really about — an eBook that would have made my life a lot easier if it had been around when I first considered implementing GTD in Evernote.
Daniel’s book, The Unofficial Guide to Capturing Everything and Getting Things Done in Evernote, isn’t a step-by-step how-to manual. It’s not a mind-bending piece of literature, and it’s not going to cook you breakfast. What it is, wonderfully, is a straightforward, conversational look at why Evernote is a great tool for productivity in general, and how easily it can be used to apply GTD principles effectively. The book never talks down to you, and it never assumes you know too much or too little — it is simply honest and genuine; experienced, but uncomplicated. It doesn’t hurt that it’s a fun and easy read, either.
Daniel starts out by giving you a little background on his own experiences in searching for a productivity tool that would change it all for him. This is a conversation that he is very open about on his blog, and one that he has brought to 40Tech through several insightful and helpful comments. He openly admits that he was just as lost as the rest of us, and that it was his search and his failures in discovering or hacking together the perfect productivity system that ultimately led him back to Evernote. Evernote brought him back to basics — back to simplicity and a straight ahead means of getting things done. This eventually led him to the sense of “mind like water” that inspired his eBook.
He does a good job of breaking down his GTD implementation in Evernote, giving plenty of examples while keeping things light. As I mentioned earlier in the post, the book is not a GTD instruction manual. It does, however, work well as an introductory guide to a system that has been working out very well for him, and is easy to implement.
If I had to pick out a negative — and a review isn’t a review if you don’t — I would say that my only issue is that there are a few rough patches in grammar and a few missed words that might cause you to have to re-read a sentence or two. Even still, the author’s message is always clear, so don’t let the nit-picky things hold you back. Besides, Daniel has stated that his eBook is going to receive quarterly updates — for free — that will include new content and will likely add a few edits in as well.
The Unofficial Guide to Capturing Everything and Getting Things Done in Evernote is an easy, informative, and entertaining read of approximately 40 pages. If you are looking for a decent overview of how GTD can be effectively accomplished in Evernote, it’s definitely worth the $5 price tag, especially considering the free updates for life that you get with it. [UPDATE: We now have an affiliate link that you can use to buy the book, which means we get a buck or two from each purchase if you purchase through that link.].
Borrowing eBooks is a great way to get your free on in Kindle-land, but if you want to actually own the books — and not be subject to time limits — then check out eReaderIQ. Sure, you probably won’t find the latest best sellers, but you will find a lot more than just public domain. The price drop notifications don’t hurt, either.
eReaderIQ is fairly easy to use, though the interface is a bit busy, and they have recently added a Kindle-friendly version of the site so you can browse right from your device. The database is updated hourly and is region-specific, which helps you to avoid any cross-border licensing disappointments. The 10 regions cover the planet, for the most part, though some are very generalized (like “Asia & Pacific” — does it include Russia? Who knows?) and there is a note at the bottom of the site that states prices and availability are accurate for US customers, regardless of the region you choose. It should also be noted that the book links take you directly to Amazon.com, not the Amazon site that is specific to your country.
You don’t have to register for anything, or provide any personal information at all to eReaderIQ for it to work, but if you do provide your email (upper-right corner of the site) you will be notified up to twice per day of any new free Kindle eBooks outside of the public domain. You can also watch specific books for price drops by adding the ASIN or Item URL, your price-drop Notification Threshold, and your email address.
Another cool feature of the Price Drop Tracker is that you can see a list of books that others are watching (again, with no identifiable information), and can sort by percent of the drop, recent price drops, and most watched. There is also an icon legend to quickly note things like Text-to-Speech, Lending Enabled, etc., which makes it easy for you to find what you are looking for.
eReaderIQ is a great service for Kindle readers looking for free and price-reduced eBooks. Hopefully, they will expand to cover other eBook stores as well, like Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and iBooks. If you want more details on using the service, check out this review by Guiding Tech.
Calibre is, hands down, the best eBook manager out there. It can help you organize your entire library across devices, convert books from one format to another as needed or desired, and even use the built in server for over-the-air access to your books, from anywhere. In theory, anyway. In practise, there are many things that will get in the way of the “anywhere” part. Software and router firewalls, for example, may prove too complicated to overcome easily, leaving over-the-air book transfer dreams confined within the walls of home networks.
An easy way to mitigate these problems is to set up your Calibre library to be accessible from multiple computers — and the best way to do that is with Dropbox.
At least one Dropbox Account (free should be fine, but you can upgrade to a paid plan if you need more space)
Setting Up Your Library in Dropbox
In order to use Calibre with Dropbox, you first need to either start or move the library folder into your computer’s Dropbox folder. This can be accomplished by clicking on the Library button (it looks like a small shelf of five books) and selecting the new location. If you are starting anew library, select “Create an empty library at the new location.” If you are moving your current library, select “Move current library to new location.” Continue forward and wait for the library to be created/books transferred.
Connecting Your Library to Another Computer
Once your library is set up in Dropbox, install Calibre and Dropbox on a second computer. When Dropbox is installed, login and wait for the library folder you installed to sync fully over to the new computer. Soon there should be green checkmark icons all ’round and indicating readiness. Uthe Library button on this computer’s Calibre installation to once again set the location of your Calibre library in your Dropbox folder. This is the same as before, but this time you will need to select “Use existing library at the new location.” Again, wait until the folder is completely synced, otherwise you may get an error.
That’s it. You’re done! You should now have full access to your eBook library on two computers — more, if you were so inclined as to repeat the last steps a few times. Any changes you make in any of your Calibre installations (or in Dropbox itself) should be reflected in all, and you will be able to use the server for local WiFi transfers to your devices (if supported), without having to worry about complications that may cause you to pull your hair out.
If you happen to have been wondering, the answer is yes: you can also use this method across multiple Dropbox accounts using shared folders. This can be handy when you are using separate accounts among family computers or for work. I’m sure it could be used for other things as well, but we obviously don’t condone that at 40Tech.
Things to Remember
As you are working with the same library across multiple installations, it is a good idea to only work in Calibre on one computer at a time as doing otherwise may cause problems with the database.
It is possible that using this method across different operating systems (Windows, Mac, Linux) will cause issues with case-sensitivity in filenames and metadata. As I understand it, this is due to more to how Dropbox must interact with the host OS’s file system. Recent versions of Calibre attempt to mitigate this problem, but according to the creator of the software, it does not solve it. In a thread about this on the mobilereads forum he says: “If you have multiple books by the same author and you change the case of the author name for one of the books on a case insensitive filesystem, then on a case sensitive filesystem, calibre will lose track of the other books.” Bottom line? Be careful changing information when working across OS’s.
So far, this method has proven to be a very effective way to manage and access an eBook library from multiple computers and locations. As an added bonus, you will have access to your eBooks from any computer or device capable of accessing Dropbox, even when Calibre is not present. On the Dropbox iPhone app, for example, you can find the book file you want and open it directly in an eReader application, including iBooks and Stanza, allowing you to bypass Calibre transfers altogether. As long as you have an internet connection, your library is with you — even when space on your device is at a premium.