Free books for the iPad

I just got my iPad 3G on Monday. It’s fun. The built-in iBooks store has free books. But you can also just download any ePub format book, say from Project Gutenberg or, and then drag and drop the file onto iTunes.

The Amazon Kindle app also works just fine, and it is easier to find free books via Kindle ebooks store. THe downloaded books will sync to all Kindle devices and apps (including iPad and desktop computer).

The best camera is the one that's with you

Chase Jarvis just came out with a book titled The Best Camera Is The One That's With You: iPhone Photography. While I have not read this book, I could not agree more with the sentiment. A camera is no good if it’s sitting in your gear bag at home. The images are not going to take themselves. I happen to be a big fan of taking pictures with my phone.

Minor CueCat hacking

I bought a CueCat from LibraryThing to make it easier to scan my books. However, by default, it outputs some weird encoding. This is OK for use with LibraryThing, since they can decode the CueCat output. However, not so great with Delicious Library, which can’t.

Fortunately, they must have gotten enough questions about it and they posted a simple solution. Basically, disconnect pin 5 of one of the chips on the circuit board. Beats the more complex solutions for some of the older models. And it works like a charm.

Anyway, what’s a bit ironic is that I got one of these for free right when they first came out. It was a promo with Wired magazine. I think I threw it away. It used a PS/2 interface rather than USB, anyway.

LibraryThing and the CueCat

I’m a fan of LibraryThing, a book catalog with social tagging. To make adding books easier, I just bought a CueCat from them. It’s great.

I actually had one of the original CueCats, which came with an issue of Wired. I went down to the RadioShack to get it. It had a PS/2 interface, though. I have no idea where it is, now.

Anyway, the one I got doesn’t seem to work with Delicious Library, a great Mac application which catalogs books, music, movies, and games. Their help page says that an appropriately modified CueCat can be used to input ISBNs and UPCs, but I’ve had no luck.

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Free book

Well, I got a little surprise via UPS, today: a free copy of The Hidden Assassins (Robert Wilson). Wilson’s one of my favorite authors: I think I’ve read six of his books in the last three months. Anyway, I signed up for for his mailing list at Harcourt, and that apparently won me a copy of The Hidden Assassins. Nice. I had just finished reading all the books of his that I was able to find second hand, and was ready to get a new copy.

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Publius Ovidius Naso

Fair’s fair now, Venus. The girl’s got me hooked. All I’m asking from her
  Is love — or at least some future hope for my own
Eternal devotion. No, even that’s too much — hell, just let me love her!
  (Listen, Venus: I’ve asked you so often now.)
Say yes, pet. I’d be your slave for years, for a lifetime.
  Say yes — unswerving fidelity’s my strong suit.

From the Amores. In Latin, or English.

Listening to Spiel Mit Mir from the album “Sehnsucht [Aus]” by Rammstein