Buy LITs instead of PDFs

sat17feb2007—07w048d13%— 01h49m00s—0utc

Turns out you can easily break DRM-ed LIT ebooks while as far as I know your PDF ones — if tightly DRM-ed, and these days they all are — are lost for good — leaving you as a sucker who can’t even copy paste and interesting quote; heck, a sucker who can’t even lend the ebook to a friend (hurrah for technology!).

Interesting how piracy can actually be a good thing for business: yesterday I bought a digital version of Peter Watson’s 800-paged Ideas AM (to go with my paper version) only because it was available as a LIT. I then immediately broke the DRM (Microsoft Reader is a joke) and had the — again, 800-paged book — as an HTML mine to edit and tweak. This is just the encouragement I needed to start reading the book — just imagine, I can now tweak the format just like I want it (and as you may have noticed I am a format freak — I like my italics in a slightly more remarkable tone, my parenthetical text slightly subdued, my quotes highlighted), I can turn footnotes into sidenotes, I can 1-click-Answers.com every word, I can copy-paste to Evernote and Devonthink (these days I just can’t conceive of reading a book without highlighting, now it’s getting intolerable not being able to immediately save select quotes in a digital form1), I can upload to my webserver and have it always some seconds away, I can read it in my berry, I can print it, I can find-as-I-type, I can link, annotate, or rewrite, I can…

1 “I never quite feel like something’s real until it’s ’virtual”. A note on paper just doesn’t feel real — once it’s on the computer, though, I can actually do something with it." (pigpogm, commenting own Storing Nuggets of Information post.)

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