Sunday, April 19, 2020

Dear Jill ... Best Wishes Bill

I often get follow up questions from people who attend my webinars.

This week I heard from Bill who came along to the session I presented for The Society of Australian Genealogists on Online or E Books for Genealogy. Rather than answering Bill personally I thought that I would address his queries in a blog post. So here goes.

1. Which is your eReader of choice, for both being pleasant to use and for crossing the platforms?

 I currently use my Samsung Galaxy Note phone to read my eBooks but, as I have ramped up my reading of eBooks recently, I decided to take the plunge and purchase an eReader. 

I want something lightweight, that has a display that combats eye strain and is compatible with the apps I regularly use. I only need wifi access to the internet. My choice was a Kindle Paperwhite 32gig because it is light at about 190 grams, has a reasonable amount of storage, has a kind to the eyes display and is waterproof. However using it to download ebooks with the apps from my local library is a multistep process. These devices can be found online for under $AU200.

2.         For reading colour and larger format publications, which eReader suits?  For one example, the

One of the reasons that I haven't committed to an eReader is that they don't yet deal with colour although I have read that this is coming to eReaders in 2020! See

Although its screen is tiny I read colour magazines on my phone or during the day I read them on my laptop. Neither of these is ideal. I have a large heavy android tablet that I bought when I though Bigger is Better. It is too heavy and cumbersome for comfortable reading. 

I am now leaning towards buying a light 7" wifi only Android tablet that will cost only a few $$ more than an eReader. It won't solve the eyestrain problem but it will give me the flexibility to view in colour and use a range of eBook formats that I have with my Android phone. With a mini SD card inserted I will have enough space to store all my books on the device. My credit card is at the ready I just need to take the plunge!

3.         And on magazines, which do you access online for family history and easily readable?

I have to admit that I am not a great fan of printed mags in digital format. The only ones I browse are those from the local library's RBDigital collection. I still get the SAG journal in a printed format!

4.         Looking at the State Library, it seems their ProReader defaults to Adobe Reader.  OK?

Newcastle Library also provides these resources. I have downloaded the required app to my Android phone and I'm not aware of any issues. Adobe have a guide on their website. 

5.         Woollahra Library seems to have RBdigital for magazines and books, Overdrive, Bolinda, indyreads and EBSCO for books – haven’t researched them all!

I'm a member of three public libraries who each have different options available. I find some of their search functions difficult to operate. I'm currently fulfilling my reading for pleasure needs via the Libby app from Overdrive, I've used EBSCO resources widely over the years and am dabbling with others. 

6.         Seemingly a lot to take in

I hope these rambling are of some use Bill. Good luck with your eReading. 


Bill said...

So many thanks Jill.
By way of feedback, I had (have somewhere!) a lovely 7" Android tablet, the image was crystal clear, but I found even that annoyingly small.
My son has handed on to me a reasonably old Kindle, which still works. How do you work around Kindle/Amazon's proprietary roadblocks if not acquiring from them?

Cassmob (Pauleen) said...

I “couldn’t” survive without my iPad now...I use it far more than the desktop/laptop. I read, email, social media etc etc, on it. The mini seems to only weight 300gms and my own IPad is very’s often the protective covers that add to the weight. I tried the kindle years and years (10?) ago and didn’t like the reading experience on it, so gave it away.

crgalvin said...

In most ereader software Bill, you can enlarge the size of the text to suit your reading needs. I prefer reading on my Kindle Paperwhite and generally add any non Amazon books to it via the free Windows program Calibre which I use to manage and convert ebooks to mobi. Kindles will display PDF and Mobi files as well as Amazon’s azw format. On my ipad I have BorrowBox, Libby and RB digital for reading books from various libraries. I also have the Kindle app there and on my Android phone in case I am caught out waiting somewhere without my Kindle. PDFs can also be emailed to Kindle. Many books from the likes of such places as Gutenberg are also available in a variety of file formats including Kindle. Books such as those bought from Gould genealogy I store in Evernote so they are available on my ipad, phone or laptop. Like Jill I rarely read digital magazines, they are often overloaded with advertisements and can be slow to display.

GeniAus said...

Thanks for answering that Carmel. It takes a bit to get your head around. I've only dabbled with Calibre. Do you use it regularly?

My latest issue is that when I tried to buy a small Android tablet yesterday I couldn't find one at any of the major online retailers. Even Samsung couldn't give a date for vailability.

Crissouli said...

Congratulations! Your blog has been included in INTERESTING BLOGS in FRIDAY FOSSICKING at

Thank you, Chris

Thank you all for your comments... which are very helpful to me also.


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