Originally posted by Uli Weigel:
And searching? Well, I'm my own search engine and I'm smart enough to use the index and contents pages from time to time. I think, most book "users" do the same. Text-to-speach? Come on! Those metallic computer voices simply drive me mad.[/QB]
Uli, I don't know how large your library is, but I know that I started to forget where exactly I read something after about the 50th magic book. That was many years back. Now my library is many times larger than that. And if I don't remember in which book I read it, an index is not of a whole lot of use to me.
You are missing another important point. You can search and find relevant passages in ebooks you haven't read. Think for example about something like The Sphinx magazine. 52 volumes, 597 issues, about 20,000 pages. I doubt that anybody will read these pages from the beginning to the end. But if you have it in electronic form, you could search in it and thus make good use of it, utilize it as resource. I wouldn't be surprised if in a few decades one can buy the 'Library of Congress on disc'. Nobody would buy this to read everything, cause it ain't possible. But it would be a heck of a research tool.
Text-to-speach? Come on! Those metallic computer voices simply drive me mad.[/QB]
Then you haven't heard the latest voice engines from Lucent. We have come a far way from the 'metallic' ones. Yes, they are still computer generated and one can hear that. But the voice and it's quality is not the important point. Text-to-speech enables new and unique uses of ebooks. Imagine for a moment you are blind or visually impaired. For these people text-to-speech is heaven sent. Suddenly they are not limited to a small set of books but can read anything they like, as long as it is in electronic form.
And even for most of us who are not visually impaired, there are lots of interesting new ways of studying magic if one has text-to-speech available. Think for example you try to study a new move. With one hand you need to hold open the book which is bound such that it doesn't lay flat, then you try to hold the cards and coins, plus the rubber band in your hands, and then you need to read the text in the book. And then at the most critical point you are required to turn the page. With what? Perhaps you are skilled with your toes :-) Anybody who has studied from books has experienced such situations. Text-to-speech makes this so much easier. You start the speech where you want it to start, set the tempo such that you can follow along, and can fully concentrate on your hands and use your hands. Since the ebook does it's own page turning you can even take a glimpse from time to time of the illustrations.
But again, this needs a habit change. The first time you try this it will feel akward, unusual, strange. After the third, fourth time you will recognize that you are much faster in picking up skills and that it is much easier to acquire new moves. I know, I went through these stages. Now I am much faster and more efficient in my learning.
Remember, it is not for everybody, and it requires a habit change, which are many not willing to accept.
preserving magic one book at a time.