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You CAN read eBooks on ANY mp3 Player...Right Now!

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Life Lessons of a Military Wife (overseas in Europe!): You CAN read eBooks on ANY mp3 Player...Right Now!

Life Lessons of a Military Wife (overseas in Europe!)

My goal here is to make your life easier, especially those who are in the unique situation of being a military spouse. Yes...I've been around...but in a good way...and hopefully can share those tips, tricks and shortcuts with you too. I've been on this military bus for over 40 years now. My goals in life are to have a well-run home, few money worries, well adjusted children, money socked away and whatever happiness I can scoop out of life.

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After life as an Army brat, being in the Army myself and marrying a soldier, I can honestly say I have a bucket full of life lessons I can share to help you make your everyday life easier and enlightening. Don't waste your time making unnecessary mistakes and benefit from others who have come before you on your journey through life.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

You CAN read eBooks on ANY mp3 Player...Right Now!

I know every once in a while, I like to go off on a tangent and talk about my Zune. Now, I've never had an iPod before, and maybe that's where I am a little bit sheltered, but I am constantly finding good things to do with my Zune. An mp3 player is not just for music, videos and pictures. I don't accept the official party line that neither the Zune nor iPod supports PDFs or eBooks! So, I did a little trolling around the internet. I found a nifty little program that WILL let me read eBooks on my device. Yes, you can do it on the iPod or any other device that reads picture files too. Here's how.

I recently downloaded Suze Orman's Women and Money, after Oprah gave it away for free the other week. Since I don't spend too much time on the computer, I haven't read it yet but would like to. I spend a lot of time in my car....waiting...running errands...then waiting in line...doctors' offices....wherever...waiting. Up til now, I've been listening to some of my favorite talkshow personalities and hosts via podcast, as well as watching some documentaries and movies I had downloaded to take along. Now, I do like to look around and smell the roses and take in the scenery too, don't get me wrong...but, I just can't get away from sinking my teeth into a good book every now and then along with these little electronic stimulations. I am like my father, in that everywhere I go, I either have a newspaper or book in tow. I can't even go to sleep at night without reading...anything, even if it's a package label if that's all there is...but again, I am digressing and getting off topic!

I have about ten eBooks on my computer, from various sources, darn it...that I'd really like to read, and I am NOT buying another electronic device, ala Amazon's new Kindle. I found and downloaded some free software called eBook to Images. The gist is that this program converts every page in your eBook (in whatever format it is originally in, to include PDF images) to bitmap or jpg files, your choice. It won't convert any pictures in the book, just the written word, which is the most important part anyway.

Here are some screenshots of the program, as well as some photos of how your eBook can look on your device. You can even add page numbers, change the orientation, image size/resolution and a few other things. At first I thought the letters would be too small to read, but the Zune has such a nice large screen (larger than the iPod), that so far, I have no sign of any eyestrain.

When converting your eBook with this software, be sure to use the settings below to get the best possible copy.

  • Screen width and height should be 320 x 240.
  • Click "page numbers" and "rotate 270 deg".
  • Keep the black background and white lettering; I've found this leaves nice and crisp lettering and is easier to read.
  • Font no smaller than size 10.
  • Click "ignore trailing returns".
  • Click "Convert to images" to start the process.
  • Once the software is done, click "Show Results" to see where the folder was deposited on your computer. On mine, it was put in the "My Documents" folder.
  • For the Zune, put this converted book folder (I renamed mine with book title and author) into your "My Pictures" folder. When it is time to sync with your mp3 player, you should see the book folder listed there along with all the other picture folders you have.
  • When viewing in your mp3 player, make sure you have your shuffle feature turned off and view each jpg in order, page by page.
It's just a little annoying seeing the original book page numbers mixed in with the new page numbers the converting program put in there, but otherwise, I enjoy being able to read my eBooks away from the computer.

How do you read your eBooks? Do you have a PDA or do you read them on your computer? Or do you not even do eBooks? Now I'm wondering what else I can do with my Zune....what is your favorite gadget? Do you have a favorite little program that makes your gadget perform even better?



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for the info. I will have to try it because I have sooooo many ebooks to read and so little computer time!

September 9, 2008 at 11:26 AM  
Blogger Ashley said...

thanks for this. i was just doing a search to see what mp3 player to buy that would allow for this and couldn't find much.

January 29, 2009 at 5:07 PM  

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