Dr. Asus

May 28th, 2011 in .Blogs .Transformer Summer Blogs
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Dr. Asus

Mark – www.markkalch.com

The first thing you are probably wondering is how I keep coming up with these snappy post headings…or perhaps not. But today’s tenuous link to the title is ebooks. Yes, that’s right swapping print for electronic. A couple of days ago, Amazon reported that their sale of electronic books had outstripped that of print. After spending the last few years in the technology wilderness I am not about to be left behind this time.

Fortunately, my ASUS Eee Pad Transformer has a couple of pretty slick answers. Firstly, the Android Honeycomb OS that it runs supplies me with it’s very own Reader. For browsing downloaded documents, newspapers and books, a very smooth, page flipping motion allows me to move forwards and backwards. It came pre-loaded with Alice in Wonderland and that was it. I have not yet managed to figure out how to add books, but to be honest I have not really tried. The reason being is all down to the Amazon Kindle app for Android. All I had to do was download the app, taking all of 20 seconds. Open it up, sign in to my already existing Amazon account and get to work. My first buy was a budget 68 pence copy of Miyamoto Musashi‘s The Book of Five Rings. With a click of a button it was delivered directly to my tablet. Just like that! Brilliant. I then figured out that you can get free books! Woo hoo! There is a gold mine of classics to be had and without paying a single cent. In quick order I got my hands on:

Travels in the Interior of Africa Part 1 & 2 by the legendary explorer Mungo Park

South: the story of Shackleton’s 1914-1917 expedition by Sir Ernest Shackleton

Life on the Mississippi by Mark Twain and Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

The Last of the Mohicans: A narrative of 1757 by James Fenimore Cooper (I read a bunch of his books as I walked across Iran last year. Adventure is an understatement)

The Religion of the Samurai: A study of Zen Philosophy and discipline in China and Japan

All free, all legal and all from Amazon. I was stoked to say the least. Amazon even gives you a bunch of links to where you can find hundreds more free electronic books.

I suppose the Kindle itself is such a winner because of it’s gnarly screen which is easy on the eyes and in direct sunlight still displays perfectly. I have used my tablet to read books on the tube, in the park and seated in the A & E of UCL Hospital in London. No problems so far either viewing in bright light (not sure how it might fair under a hot summer sun) or being inflicted with that awful sick feeling from staring at a computer screen too long. As well as that, when I get bored, I can switch to playing computer games. Try that with a Kindle!

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  • http://www.facebook.com/kevin.reader.IT.guru Kevin Reader

    Interesting if brief article. I had not paid too much attention to the kindle books being usable/readable on other devices so that part is interesting.

    It would have been useful to have bit more detail on ebook formats and alternative readers though, since otherwise its all getting a bit Amazon centric!  At the moment its like it will be a bloody battle between amazon, google and apple for who owns which members of the human race!  So broader support and usability information is always good to hear.

  • http://twitter.com/oceancolors Hong Ho

    Some very positive reviews of the Transformer and it seems to be gaining a following. An all-rounder with great specs. Can’t wait to try one out myself.


    Wow I’m loving the idea of this Asus Eee Pad Transformer. My husband has just purchased a kindle and a very small grey thing it is indeed. Once I saw the pictures of this in colour ereader and so much more i have fallen in love and will so keep my fingers crossed to win this device… Come to mama!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/hisuwh Henry Ing-Simmons

    Interesting to hear about reading books on a tablet.  It doesn’t get mentioned much.
    I’m used to staring at screens all day long so that aspect wouldn’t worry me.  Sounds like tablets are very usable for eBooks though

  • bob smith

    I heard you could win one of these by commenting here. I would love to be that guy.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Avril-Tyrell/100002220925193 Avril Tyrell

    I have been using the same computer since 2005 (which in technology terms, is about a million years old). I’m definitely due for an upgrade, but wasn’t sure to what.  Tablet PCs seem like the better option than a laptop, and given the choice, would prefer something like the ASUS.  Mooching around this site, I see that the ASUS has some very nice features.  Can’t see myself with an ipad, could never get to grips with the MAC OS.

  • http://twitter.com/hannahjex Hannah D

    I like that the Transformer is introducing more people to the wonderful world of ebooks. Though I love my e-reader, I know a multimedia tablet that does lots of other things as well as ebooks will be more appealing to the masses. 

  • http://twitter.com/mouslae Mouslae

    I had been thinking about getting a kindle but this may have changed my mind. Very interesting, thanks for the review.

  • http://twitter.com/biedooness Katarzyna Kurkowiak

    Like the idea of this tablet. Was thinking about a playbook but it’s really tiny, might get this one.

  • Mr Phillip Austin

    My Night Nurse.. Only you can help these here hurts………

    Im not usually taken with  Materialistic aesthetical Beauty…

    But her Chic .Slim smooth  lines. that respond to my finger tips

    Give me  a heightened sensitivity to this materialism…

    As i Hover and glide my way around the Asus.

    I Can only yet wonder what  lies beyond.

  • http://twitter.com/Stralisemiai Rachael Lines

    I found the kindles screen very dull, this sounds awesome.