TIPS for e-reading vs. books

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Posts 94
Matt B | Forum Activity | Posted: Sat, Feb 13 2010 8:00 AM

I'm finding it more and more difficult to sit and read large passages on the screen at a time. Obviously, there's a large number of factors going into this, but I want to know:

what do you do to make reading large amounts comfortable on Logos? I've taken to reading what I can on the iPod Touch (though without highlighting, academic reading needs to be on the "big screen." So- what do you do?

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Alan Macgregor | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 13 2010 8:32 AM

Matt

I just resize the font.

Setting font size to 125% is enough to make the print so much larger and reduce the amount of print on a page. That is especially true when I'm studying the Greek or Hebrew text. As I get older the text size increases!

Also using a 21" backlit LED screen makes a huge difference to brightness and sharpness of text.

I find then that I can read without fatigue or distraction.

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Floyd Johnson | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 13 2010 8:33 AM

Matt B:
what do you do to make reading large amounts comfortable on Logos?

First, I use a Netbook/Tablet PC (Gigabyte T1028 w/2GB) so my reading is on a lightweight platform that I can hold as a book.  Also, I do not use the included pen - it is way too small for my fingers.  I have a couple of alternatives that I use - though an old non-working ball point also works well on this machine.

I do not use the reading view included with L4.  I divide my screen into three columns - a small left hand column with the highlighting options available, the middle column is for the text I am reading, and the right hand column is for displaying referenced text (scripture, footnoted text, etc.).  Depending on my mood I will either use the tablet  in landscape or portrait mode.

I can read while watching TV or while my wife is driving or on the train (we travel by Amtrak).  The only thing I don't like is the in ability to make hand written notes to the side of the text.  I am waiting for "formatted" copying to make its way into L4 - then I may be tempted to copy the text to OneNote and work in a similar way within that environment.

Feel free to ask more questions.

Blessings,

Floyd

Blessings,
Floyd

Pastor-Patrick.blogspot.com

Posts 321
Michael Parry-Thomas | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 13 2010 8:35 AM

hi

when I'm reading I use a couple of utilities, my favourite one is line reader

there's so much you can do with this utility to help when you're reading large amounts of text

your best going to their website to read more about this utility

the company is called  iconico product utility is called line reader

mick

 

Mick
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Friedrich | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 13 2010 9:29 AM

When I read for reading's sake, I do something similar to Floyd.  I have also experimented with making the print large enough so that only about 7 words fit across the width. If I remember correctly, this is a Morris Proctor tip.  The advantage, other than large print, is that your eye does not travel as much back to the beginning of the line--check it out, and you will notice--which cuts down on reading time.  Sometimes I like that.  Sometimes I like to see more of a "page" in front of me, so I might make it 12 words across. 

I'd really like to get a tablet or an iPad, but that is probably NOT happening for a year or two!  :)

I like Apples.  Especially Honeycrisp.

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Mark Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 13 2010 10:04 AM

When I do this I use a floating panel. This can be resized for easier reading (and of course the print size can be changed). By opening up your Highlighter panel and a Notes panel in floating panel mode you can drag these into the same panel and rearrange them to suit your need. Here is an example:

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Posts 191
Sharon | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 13 2010 10:34 AM

One of my doctors told me to try and make sure the screen is lower than your eyes.  Looking downward is more comfortable than looking upward.  This is also helpful in keeping the eyes lubricated because the eyelid, being lowered, continues to cover much more of the eye itself.

Sometimes, after enlarging the font, I will set my office chair to a reclining position, put a small pillow behind my neck and try.

But the truth is, for me, because of physical pain, I usually print out large quantities of articles, sometimes whole books, in order to read comfortably and mark them up as I read.  I know this is a backwards way of doing it, but it works for me.  I still use Logos for this because I have the ability to print it.  It is also far less weight to hold than an entire book.  And, of course, I can choose the size font I want in hardcopy.

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Floyd Johnson | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 13 2010 11:29 AM

Sharon:
But the truth is, for me, because of physical pain, I usually print out large quantities of articles, sometimes whole books, in order to read comfortably and mark them up as I read.

Sharon:

I assume that you are using some version of Logos 3.0.  This introduces another reason for including formatted printing  and/or copying in Logos 4 - hopefully soon,.

Blessings,

Floyd

Blessings,
Floyd

Pastor-Patrick.blogspot.com

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Jacob Hantla | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 13 2010 11:52 AM

The most important thing about reading in Logos I think is getting a comfortable spot to read and an appropriate screen setup. I can read for long periods of time both at my desk on a large screen and anywhere on my netbook. My favorite way to layout the screen is to have

3 columns

Left column: Highlighters & notes
Middle Column: Text I'm reading (not too wide. No more than 8-10 words per line. I can't wait til Logos gets a columned reading view)
Right Column: Bible & info pane (Info pane so I can hover on words and get definitions as well as footnotes etc)

Drop the brightness on the screen to the lowest necessary for you to see without  straining. High brightness tires my eyes out.

And the advice about keeping the screen below your eye level is a very true one. 

Following this pattern I have found that I far prefer reading digitally to traditional pen and paper due to easy scripture look up, notetaking and highlighting, dictionary lookup, and cross-referencing. 

 

My setup for studying a text in depth is obviously quite a bit different than this and should probably vary with purpose of your study, but the above layout is what I usually use (with some variation depending on the book) for reading.

Jacob Hantla
Pastor/Elder, Grace Bible Church
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Posts 5337
Kevin Becker | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 13 2010 12:22 PM

I had a professor in seminary who almost read himself blind while working on his PhD. He said the eye doctor recommended looking away from the computer screen and focusing on something in the distance for a second or two to reduce eye-strain. So, in addition to all the thing recommended here, looking down, enlarging the print, take some time to not read to rest your eyes every so often.

Posts 294
Debra W Bouey | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 13 2010 3:05 PM

Since I've recently learned I have an advanced retinal condition in my right eye which causes ongoing deterioration in my vision, we've just started to investigate what can be done to facilitate my electronic reading and computer work in the event of the worst-case scenario. We've only just begun and are amazed at the variety of options available even to those who are legally blind ... most of which understandably comes with a price, of course. But it is easily do-able with that in view. So I can carry on with my Logos and my e-library! Smile

What we have learned so far to minimize eye strain on my "good" eye is that using a Sans Serif font/typeface is preferred for e-reading, which is just the opposite of reading print copies of books, ironically. Many folks with diminished vision seem to generally prefer the Verdana font for online/monitor reading. Please note, however, this is one of the typefaces with which Logos4 doesn't play nice in dictionaries, but I find it only a minor, insignificant glitch. Examples:

Using Verdana (which doesn't play nice with dictionaries in L4) you get this glitch with the little boxes:

 

Using Calibri, with which L4 peacefully cohabits:

 

My retinal surgeon recommended the top border of my monitors be at about middle of forehead height so, as someone else here has already noted, your eyes are reading downward. He also recommended several specific over-the-counter eye lubricant drops since dry eyes can cause both discomfort and even some temporary, very minor visual distortion.

We're still learning and gathering info along the way as we go. One thing I'm imminently thankful for, none of my retinal docs have ever recommended I limit or cease my e-reading or computering.

 

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Posts 94
Matt B | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 13 2010 8:37 PM

Great tips everyone thanks! I've increased font sizes and downloaded the free preview of the line reader app, which I'll try next week. Keep them coming if there are more tips!

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Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 13 2010 8:58 PM

I've done some practice learning speed reading, and it has helped me have less eye fatigue when reading on the screen. Here's why:

The speed reading training teaches you to make smoother eye motions left to right without stopping, rather than what we habitually do which is jerky zig-zag motions where our eyes are wiggling back and forth, stopping for a fraction of a second on a word here, backing up there, and continuing in this halting fashion. Not only does this slow down your reading, but it's also much more tiring on your eye muscles.

"Speed reading" need not necessarily be super fast. One major principle of it is you learn to adjust the speed at which your eyes pass over the lines and the page based on the type of content you're reading (how dense it is, and how familiar the subject matter; the lighter the material or the more familiar you are with it, the more quickly you can read it) and your purpose for reading it (whether to learn something, for enjoyment, or just to skim it for the highlights -- three different increasing levels of speed). Whatever you reading speed, though, the techniques of "speed reading" will help you read more smoothly which is key to less eye strain.

Now, when I speed read on screen, I can scroll down smoothly using the scroll button on the middle of the mouse, and it makes for a much more comfortable reading experience altogether.

So find a good resource for learning speed reading (I recommend Peter Kump's Break-Through Rapid Reading), and apply what you learn on paper to the screen.

EDIT: I just looked at that line reader utility, and it is based on the same principles of speed reading -- the guiding line helps to keep your eye moving at a constant rate forward, instead of skipping around all over the place, so I'm going to give it a try. Looks useful!

Posts 1875
Alan Macgregor | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Feb 14 2010 5:07 AM

With regard to fonts for displaying text in various languages, from my own experience - I have AMD - I would suggest the unicode font Tahoma or Arial Unicode MS for sans serif fonts. Palatino Linotype is a serif unicode font which reads easily. These will all display English, Greek, Syriac, Cyrillic, Hebrew and Arabic, plus several Asian languages.

However, there can be display problems if there are specialised non-unicode fonts used in the text. There are issues with some Gentium Greek characters when you transpose to Tahoma. It's really just a case of experimenting until you find a font that suits you.

Personally, I find the largest single help is increasing font size. Idea

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Kevin A. Purcell | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Feb 14 2010 5:44 AM

I have exported portions of  a book via copy/paste to a Word doc and sent it to my Kindle. On the kindle you can do markups and import them into Logos via notes files.

Posts 6
Harold A. Kime | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Feb 14 2010 2:09 PM

I have a slightly different solution for highlighting.  I have the highlighting in a floating window.  I then dragged that window to the favorites area so that it appears as an icon.  Then I positioned it so that it will appear exactly where I want it when it is time to highlight.  I then saved the workspace, so it comes back each time I start.  Now when I want to highlight, I just click on the icon, the highlighting window appears temporarily for me to use.  Then I click back in Logos 4.0 and it disappears!  This saves a great amount of space that would be waisted.

Posts 98
April Pyle | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Feb 15 2010 12:30 PM

I have it slightly differently but with the same results.  I have three columns open.  The first is the Passage Guide/My Bibles.  The 2nd column is my Commentaries, and the third is the Info, favorites, explorer, text comparison, and highlighting.  These are the ones I use most when I'm studying, so this gives me what I need quickly.  I tried it your way but went back to this. 

April

Posts 191
Sharon | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Feb 15 2010 1:13 PM

Floyd,

Actually, I have my old computer with Logos 3 still on in sitting on the floor of my office.  Sometimes I think I will hook it up to use it and then I think, it won't be long until Logos 4 is going to have it so I will just continue this way...but I will be glad when the full printing and copying functions come to Logos 4 - very soon, I hope!  Thanks for thinking of it!

Blessings,

Sharon

wordcenterministries.org

Posts 191
Sharon | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Feb 15 2010 1:15 PM

Alan,

The font size is the main help for me, too.

And I have found, like you said, that Arial reads easily.  That is what I like to print in, too.

Sharon

wordcenterministries.org

Posts 191
Sharon | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Feb 15 2010 1:40 PM

DW Bouey:

My retinal surgeon recommended the top border of my monitors be at about middle of forehead height so, as someone else here has already noted, your eyes are reading downward. He also recommended several specific over-the-counter eye lubricant drops since dry eyes can cause both discomfort and even some temporary, very minor visual distortion.

We're still learning and gathering info along the way as we go. One thing I'm imminently thankful for, none of my retinal docs have ever recommended I limit or cease my e-reading or computering.

Interesting how similar Verdana and Calibri fonts are!  Arial is my favorite and it looks like a cousin!

I pray the Lord will heal you.

Blessings

Sharon

wordcenterministries.org

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