PDA Fiction

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Canada Legalizes Same Sex Marriages

Cool - the Liberal Party's gay marriage bill was passed 158-133

Says the CBC: "Supported by most members of the Liberals, the Bloc Québécois and the NDP, the legislation passed easily, making Canada only the third country in the world, after the Netherlands and Belgium, to officially recognize same-sex marriage."

I live close to Canada. Every day, I wonder more and more why I'm on the wrong side of the border.

Mobipocket Developer Center: Mobi Reader 5 Beta

Mobi is working to improve their reader, after all. Along with v4.9, Mobi also released a 5.0 beta. The most interesting feature, from my point of view, is that the PIDs will remain stable after a hard reset. So it may no longer be necessary to re-download your entire library every time your PDA hiccups.

If you are interested in the beta, there is an interesting thread over on PocketPC Thoughts

Wrong - Very, Very Wrong

Via TBogg, I find:

"Bonus Renée Zellweger antipathy note: she is currently slated to play Janis Joplin in Piece of My Heart. You may now commence getting your hate on...."

No. No no no no no no NO.

This is soooo wrong.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

Molly Ivins

Molly Ivins has a few things to say about the Downing Street Memos.

Use iSiloX to get it onto your PDA.

Mobipocket Update

Via MobileRead: MobiPocket Reader has been updated to v4.9.

If you have MobiPocket Pro v4.5 or newer, this is a free update.

I hate MobiPocket updates. Last time I did one, all the PIDs got screwed up and I couldn't open any of my DRM'ed books.

Wait - make that two things I hate: MobiPocket updates and DRM PIDs tied to a specific machine.

And did I mention that MobiPocket Home Creator has suddenly stopped being able to inport from Word one my desktop PC? I've rigged up a work around - but Mobi support is - literally - non-existent. They haven't responded to my requests at all. Way to creat customer loyalty!

By and large, I dislike MobiPocket a lot.

Free Books In July

eReader is giving away a different book every day in July. No word yet on which books will be free, but if it is like the previous promotions, expect a Star Trek book, some Dickens, some Jules Verne, a classic or two by someone like Tolstoy, a couple of kids' books (I'm betting Secret Garden) ... in short, the same public domain they always choose.

But they are free, and in eReader format, and worth reading -- you could do worse.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Toad in the Hole

"There are things that make me feel very very old. My left ankle, with its odd swelling and creaky demeanor. My knees, which hurt rather too much of the time. My lungs, which never have been much good. Menopausal nominal aphasia, the name of which I couldn’t guarantee remembering just then. Hot flashes, as in "WTF, I’m getting hot flashes again??" The skin of my neck. And reruns of the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, including but not restricted to hip-hugger pants, mostly inept attempts at "hippie" style, and those damned debates about women, sex, and rape.

"I really want to slap people. I really want to ask if they can’t read, and why they’ve never bothered to look up or read or even just ask about what’s been said before."

Yeah, me too.

As a bonus, the turtle story is great.

MobileRead Networks - Downing Street Memo

Still haven't read the Downing Street Memo (yeah - neither has Dick Cheney)? MobileRead provides a copy in iSilo format.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Lesbian Portrait Note Cards

My partner is selling a line of Lesbian Note Cards that I think are kind of cool: 5 different portraits of lesbians, 10 cards total. Take a look, if you are so inclined. Right now she just has them in her eBay store, but they should also be available in her bookstore pretty soon.

ABC Amber Converters

I found Amber Converters via Telread. If you need to convert one format into another format, this appears to be the place to start.

The excellent news is the free Amber LIT Converter:

"ABC Amber LIT Converter is an advanced utility which converts your LIT (Microsoft Reader) files to any format you wish (PDF, HTML, CHM, RTF, HLP, DOC, and many more) easily and quickly.
The software supports a batch conversion, a run from command line, more than 50 languages. Batch conversion ability allows you to convert a unlimited number of LIT files at a time."

Like Convert LIT, this program requires an activated copy of MS Reader and a legitimately purchased ebook for conversion. Like Convert LIT, it's probably some sort of copyright violation. However, if you want to read the books you purchsed yourself on a Palm (for instance) - this is one way to go.

On a related note: the folks at Convert LIT are wondering if Amber LIT infringes on their GPL license. And I thought irony was dead.

Total Commander - WinCE/PocketPC

Total Commander for Windows is a good File Manager replacement. That's old news.

What's new is that they've just released a freeware version of Total Commander for the PocketPC

Somewhere, after one of the 5,000,000 hard resets I've had to do on my PocketPC, I lost the key to an old version of Rescoe Explorer. Since I have no plans to buy it again, I'm installing Total Commander (assuming ActiveSync is working this week...)

Monday, June 20, 2005

Jesus' General and the 101st Fighting Keyboarders

The General has Yellow Elephant paraphenalia and eveything.

"The objective of OPERATION YELLOW ELEPHANT is to recruit College Republicans and Young Republicans to serve as infantry. They demanded this war and now viciously support it. It's only right that they also experience it."

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Creek Running North: Hating women

Nothing whatsoever to do with ebooks - but if you aren't reading Creek Running North, you are missing some of the best writing on the internet.

Friday, June 17, 2005

MobileRead Link Dump

There was lots of interesting news on Mobile Read today.

1) Full-time SciFi writer Charles Stross made available for free and under a under a Creative Commons license the e-book edition of his latest novel Accelerando The book is available for reading in HTML, with minimal markup (to make it easier for web clipping utilities to digest it). In addition, zip archives are provided for download in a variety of formats. The primary formats are RTF and conformant HTML 4.0. For direct reading on PDAs and smartphones, a Plucker database is provided. Finally, there are (deprecated) plain text and Palm DOC versions – these lack typographic markup.

2) Google Indexes The Mobile Web: Google has released a new beta service for mobile web searchers allowing you to search an index of pages that have been optimized for mobile devices with small screens.

3) StyleTap allows you to run applications (and games!) originally written for Palm OS® handhelds on your Windows Mobile™ Pocket PC handheld. For some reason, the screen shot shows a PocketPC running the Palm version of iSilo Reader. Surely it would be simpler to just run the PocketPC version? However, for all those great Palm apps that have no PPC counterpart -- like ShadowPlan - this emulator may be invaluable. There's a free 14 day trial. The registered version costs $30

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Earl Emerson Bundle

Interesting pricing at eReader.com

You can buy the newest Earl Emerson book, Pyro, for $14.54

Or -- you can add Vertical Burn and Into The Inferno, and get the entire bundle for $15.00

That's more like it.

Majikthise : Cats may improve your social life

Also from Majikthise today: Toxoplasma and You

A study in Britain "...found the women infected with toxoplasma spent more money on clothes and were consistently rated as more attractive. 'We found they were more easy-going, more warm-hearted, had more friends and cared more about how they looked,' he said. 'However, they were also less trustworthy and had more relationships with men.' [Sunday Times]"

No word on how this works for the 99.999% of lesbians who have cats.

Mukhtaran Bibi Update

From Majikthise, here's an update on Mukhtaran Bibi's situation: "Mukhtaran Bibi, the Pakistani human rights activist and educator, is still not free to travel. Yesterday, the government agreed, amid mounting international pressure, to remove Mukhtaran from Pakistan's 'no exit list.' "

Read more here and here

International pressure helps. Tom Watson has a list of Pakistani officials to contact here

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Tapwave Zodiac 1 on Sale for $200.00

If you are looking for a better ebook reader - 480x320 resolution; 3.8" screen - the Zodiac 1, now on sale at CompUSA, may be the answer.

This PDA was always pushed as a gaming unit - but it is a superior PDA. Built around Palm OS 5.2, is sports TWO expansion slots and Bluetooth. Not only can you fit your entire library ona 1 GB SD card, you can fill a second 1 GB card with music. Never swap cards or run out of space again.

Quite a deal.

MobileRead Networks - EFF Legal Guide for Bloggers (in mobile formats!)

Via Mobile Read -- here's the EFF Legal Guide for Bloggers in Plucker and iSIlo formats

IBM Thinkpad Tablet PC

Ooo.. that's interesting

Raped, Kidnapped and Silenced - New York Times

Kristoff has more today about Mukhtaran Bibi, the woman who was sentenced to be gang raped because of something her family allegedly did.

She's an extraordinary - and extraordinarily brave - woman. And her struggle is on-going. Today Kristoff reports, "...a few days ago, the Pakistani government went berserk.

"On Thursday, the authorities put Ms. Mukhtaran under house arrest - to stop her from speaking out. In phone conversations in the last few days, she said that when she tried to step outside, police pointed their guns at her. To silence her, the police cut off her land line.

"After she had been detained, a court ordered her attackers released, putting her life in jeopardy. That happened on a Friday afternoon, when the courts do not normally operate, and apparently was a warning to Ms. Mukhtaran to shut up. Instead, Ms. Mukhtaran continued her protests by cellphone. But at dawn yesterday the police bustled her off, and there's been no word from her since. Her cellphone doesn't answer."

NOTE: "For more information about Mukhtaran Bibi, see www.4anaa.org/projects/mukhtaran-mai.htm. That's on the Web site of the Asian-American Network Against Abuse of Women, run by a group of Pakistani doctors, and it's also the group that is arranging her visit to the U.S. In addition, see www.mercycorps.org. Mercy Corps is working with Ms. Mukhtaran in administering the funds that Times readers sent for her.

SIDE NOTE: Hey Daily Kossacks -- is this one of the more important things you are paying attention to?


Tablet PCs

Josh Marshall, at Talking points Memo, has a mini-review of his experience with a Motion Tablet PC. In short, he loves it.

If you'd like more info about Tablets, Marshall's review is a good place to start. He even includes a link to a typical page of notes

Tablet PCs are expensive: probably too expensive if all you want is the perfect eBook reader. However, it's hard to imagine a more perfect eBook reader than a Tablet PC (assuming you aren't wedded to the PDA form factor). MobiPocket, eReader and MS Reader all have desktop readers. If you are thinking of spending $500 or $600 on a CyBook - take a look at a used HP/Compaq T1000 as well (occaisionally available on TabletPCBuzz's For Sale forum or eBay) Yes, they are older and slower - and about half as expensive as other used Tablets.

The T1000 will probably never be your main computer - but it might replace several other gadgets.

Or you could just go hog wild and buy a new HP TC4200. Or, if you want a slate, a Motion LE 1600.

Ummm, yum

Sunday, June 12, 2005

War: Realities and Myths - by Chris Hedges

Chris Hedges has been a war reporter for 15 years most recently for the New York Times. He is author of What Every Person Should Know About War, a book that offers a critical lesson in the dangerous realities of war. He's also author of War is a Force That Gives Us Meaning

Read his essay at Atiwar.com

Use the "Print This" link and iSiloX or Repligo to make a copy to read on your PDA

Further readng: Peloponnesian War at PDAFiction (eReader format)
1984 by George Orwell from The University of Adelaide's ebook collection (HTML - easily converted to the reader of your choice)

Friday, June 10, 2005

Lambda Awards

The Advocate has a list of Lambda award winners:

Debut Gay Men's Fiction: Clay's Way, Blair Mastbaum (Alyson)
Debut Lesbian Fiction: Crybaby Butch, Judith Frank (Firebrand)
Gay Men's Fiction: The Master, Colm Tóibín (Scribner)
Lesbian Fiction: A Seahorse Year, Stacey D'Erasmo (Houghton Mifflin)
Lesbian Poetry: Sweet to Burn, Beverly Burch (Gival Press)
Gay Men's Poetry: Written in Water, Luis Cernuda (City Lights)
Lesbian Mystery: Hancock Park, Katherine V. Forrest (Berkeley Prime Crime/Penguin Group USA)
Gay Men's Mystery: Flight of Aquavit, Anthony Bidulka (Insomniac Press)
Fiction Anthology: Fresh Men: New Voices in Gay Fiction, selected by Edmund White, edited by Donald Weise (Carroll & Graff)
Nonfiction Anthology: I Do/I Don't: Queers on Marriage, edited by Greg Wharton and Ian Philips (Suspect Thoughts Press)
Memoir: Name All the Animals, Alison Smith (Scribner)
Biography: Warrior Poet: A Biography of Audre Lorde, Alexis De Veaux (W.W. Norton)
Children's/Young Adult: So Hard to Say, Alex Sanchez (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers)
Erotica: Best Gay Erotica 2005, edited by Richard Labonte (Cleis Press)
Humor: Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, David Sedaris (Little, Brown)
Romance: Almost Like Being in Love, Steven Kluger (HarperCollins)
SciFi/Fan/Horror: The Ordinary, Jim Grimsley (Tor)
Spirituality: Jesus and the Shamanic Tradition of Same-Sex Love, Will Roscoe (Suspect Thoughts Press)
Drama/Theater: I Am My Own Wife, Doug Wright (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
Visual Arts/Photography: At Ease: Navy Men of World War II, Evan Bachner (Harry Abrams)
LGBT Studies: For the Love of Women: Gender, Identity, and Same-Sex Relations in a Greek Provincial Town, Elisabeth Kirtsoglou (Routledge)
Transgender: The Gender Frontier, Mariette Pathy Allen (Kehrer Verlag)

New Zealand Windows XP Bliss Desktop Background

Windows wallpaper and themes from Microsoft in New Zealand.

Tabbed Browsing in IE 6

Hokey Smoke, Bullwinkle! Haven't Firefox users had this forever?

Microsoft has finally released an update that brings tabs to Internet Explorer. Of course, you have to download the MSN Toolbar to get it...

Wednesday, June 08, 2005


How many weeks has it been since iSilo 4.26 left beta and was officially released? 3 or 4?

iSilo never rests on its laurels - iSilo 4.27 is now in the first stages of beta testing. This version will add support for Symbian Series 60 based cell phones.


If you're not already checking in on MobileRead, you should. There's lots of useful stuff for PDA users.

Publish eBook

Publish eBook is an interesting free tool for converting MS Word documents to eReader ebooks.

It incorporates many of the features of the original Word2PML macro, and works with DropBook (eReader's free conversion utility).

If you've had trouble with Word2PML - or you don't want to pay for eBook Studio - this program is worth a look

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Screw This

My Palm Tungsten T3, the perfect PDA which has never given me a moment's trouble (aside from that unfortunate SD card eating thing that all original T3s did - and I've forgiven and forgotten that) - has at last fallen on hard times.

Or more precisely, the slider screws started falling out.

Others have complained about this for years - but I thought I was exempt.


I noticed that the lower left hand screw on the slider was loose. I tightened it. Then I tightened it again a few days later. And forgot about it. A few weeks after that, I noticed that the slider felt mushy. When I looked, both screws on the left hand side of the slider were missing.

I ordered 4 new, exact replacement screws from Carmine Castiglia for $5.95. Yes - 4 teensy, tiny little screws about the size of ths semi-colon ; cost $6.00.

But I want to endorse Castiglia's service despite the price. I ordered the screws over the Memorial Day Weekend, and they were in my mailbox on Tuesday. They do, indeed, fit perfectly. Service couldn't be better or faster (and I doubt that Castiglia is making an exorbitant profit despite the price - this is a pretty small market.)

Friday, June 03, 2005

WordNetCE V2.7 for PPC released

WorldNetCE is a free, English language dictionary for the PocketPC (link via Teleread)

Devil's Corner by Lisa Scottoline

I enjoy Lisa Scottoline's books. I like everyone at Bennie Rosato's law firm. I like Philadelphia.

I definitely plan to buy Devils' Corner -- when the price drops below $6.00

What is it with ebook publishers? An ebook - with the sort of restrictive DRM that keeps you from reselling the book ; or even, possibly, re-reading it if you get a new PDA -- an ebook with those sorts of restrictions is just not worth hardback prices!

Dance of Death by Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child

Special Agent Pendergast is back -- with his evil brother - but $14.54 (with the newsletter discount) is still too high a price to pay.