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The future of books at NYPL

There are so many new ways to access books and other digital reading matter on personal computers and portable devices. How to keep up? Library staff offer tips and tricks to get the most out of free ebooks online and our own eNYPL services, and share occasional thoughts on the future of reading.

I Love Reading: Long Form Essays and Journalism

In this week's installment of I Love Reading I want to talk about the kind of reading that is not books, not news, not blogs, but something in between. It demands a little bit more of your attention span than Twitter, but maybe not as much as your book group's latest pick. It can be from last week or fifteen years ago, and still be relevant to today. It can be a true tale of crime and punishment, an

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I Love Reading: News, Blogs, Twitter

In this week's episode of I Love Reading, I will talk about updates. I don't mean the kind of updates that clutter your Facebook feed, though they are basically the same thing. When I say updates I mean news in the journalistic, newspaper sense, news from your field or area of interest, or news that is created and shared among your group of friends and trusted online acquaintances.

A lot of these updates and news sources now take the form of blogs. Long ago, a blog was considered to be an online diary or 

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I Love Reading: EPUB and PDF

For the first part of this series, I want to talk about a few of the formats commonly used for reading digital text as well as the tools — software and devices — we can use to read them.

Library ebooks are available in EPUB, PDF, and Kindle format. The Library also subscribes to hundreds of databases, some of which will allow you to download articles or page images for personal use in PDF format.

Jump to files and 

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How Do I Love Reading? Let Me Count the Ways

This February in the eReading Room we'll be celebrating all the different ways we love to read. If you're the kind of person who will read a cereal box if it's the only thing nearby, you'll want to pay special attention to this four-part series. I'll be detailing some of the new ways we read now, outside of the traditional printed-and-bound-and-published volume (which, don't get me wrong, we still love just as much). This purpose of this series is to help you get the most out of online reading at work, at home, or 

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Kerri's eBook Tips: Keep it Simple with One Catalog!

The other day someone asked if I still read "regular books." Have I become anti-paper with my new Kindle love? The answer to that is, look at the paper cuts on my fingers. I am a fan of reading, whether it's in book format or electronic. During my commute I use my Kindle because it's lighter to carry around, but I still love the feeling of a heavy book on my lap when I read in my apartment. When looking for material to read or download, I can now do all of my searching and downloading in New York Public Library's catalog. Thus my latest eReading 

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Kerri's eNYPL Tips: The Wish List

I'm sure you've created a wish list in your mind that contains some impossibly unattainable items. For example, one of my wish list items includes a home on a private island. While my improbable wish list grows, I have started another list — an eNYPL wish list — where at least my reading dreams will come true.

My fellow eNYPL users: my number one 

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Need an eBook Recommendation?

After the unfortunate death of my Sony Reader, I went through the five stages of grief, as the loss of my device was a very dramatic event. I denied that it was broken, I threw a temper tantrum, I told a Best Buy employee that I would do anything to have it back, and I cried on the train, but I finally came to accept that I had sat on my Sony Reader and I alone was to blame. As I browsed sadly through the eNYPL catalog, images of the distinctly curved cracked screen flashed through my head, and 

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A Digital Public Library for America?

If nature has made any one thing less susceptible than all others of exclusive property, it is the action of the thinking power called an idea, which an individual may exclusively possess as long as he keeps it to himself; but the moment it is divulged, it forces itself into the possession of every one... Its peculiar character, too, is that no one possesses the less, because every other possesses the whole of it. That ideas should freely spread from one to another over the globe... seems to have been designed by nature.

— Thomas Jefferson,

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Science Fiction eBooks: Now Available for Kindle!

If you missed the big news, The New York Public Library now offers free ebooks for your Kindle! To celebrate, I've put together a somewhat exhaustive list of science fiction ebook titles to make it easy to browse them at a glance.

Click to go directly to any author: Douglas Adams, Isaac Asimov, Philip K. Dick, China Miéville, Kim 

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When They Trod the Boards: John Lithgow

We hereby announce the new blog series When They Trod the Boards, designed to highlight notable film or television actors who have a substantial background in stage work as documented in the collections of the Library's Billy Rose Theatre Division. We launch the series with John Lithgow and his new memoir, 

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Library Books on Kindle: A Visual Walkthrough

Have you heard? Library books are now available to borrow on Kindle devices and other devices with Kindle reading software (Windows, Mac, Blackberry, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Android, Windows Phone 7) as well as their Kindle Cloud Reader (read without downloading software in your web browser).

Here is a walkthrough of how it works. (If you're scrolling-averse, check out this video from 

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Reader's Den: "Software" by Rudy Rucker (Discussion #4)

Thank you for joining us for the June edition of Reader's Den. We hope that you have enjoyed reading (and discussing) Software by Rudy Rucker and that you will return for E.M. Forster's A Room With a View in July!

Some final discussion questions:

    What did you think of 
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Reader's Den: "Software" by Rudy Rucker (Discussion #3)

For our third installment of this month's Reader's Den, let's take a look at what Rudy Rucker's Software has to say about humans, technology, and what it means to exist.

In several places in the text, the author explores the idea of software being analogous to the soul. When Sta-Hi meets an attractive robot-remote stewardess on his way to the moon, she gives him a crash course in this new, technological metaphysics:

"You wanted to know who I am. I gave you one answer. A robot-remote. A servo-unit operated by a ... Read More ›

Reader's Den: "Software" by Rudy Rucker (Discussion #2)

Thanks for tuning in for the second discussion of Reader's Den for June! This month we are discussing the science fiction classic Software by Rudy Rucker, which is the first book in The Ware Tetralogy.

This book exemplifies a style of writing Rucker has termed "transrealism." In his 1983 Transrealist Manifesto, he argues that the tropes of science fiction can be viewed as symbols for the "modes of perception," i.e. time 

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Reader's Den: "Software" by Rudy Rucker (Discussion #1)

Welcome to the June edition of Reader's Den at The New York Public Library!

This month we will discuss Rudy Rucker's Software (1982), the first book in the Ware Tetralogy science fiction series, which also includes Wetware (1988), Freeware (1997), and Realware (2000). 

To participate, simply request a print copy through the NYPL Catalog or download a free, 

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Old Tales, New Twists: A Fantasy eBook List

Do you have an eReader? Is part of the appeal that it looks like you're living in the future? Have you found yourself wishing for more fantastical books to match your futuristic reading device? 

Look no further.

The premises might sound familiar but these books all take traditional story elements and turn them upside down. And you can get them on your ereader for free right here.

Fly on the Wall by E. Lockhart For Gretchen Yee, life as an artificial red head is anything but glamorous, especially when she feels too ordinary to fit in at her artsy 

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2010 New York Times Bestselling Young Adult Books: Free Downloads for Your eReader

Did you get an eReader for the holidays? If so, here are some digital versions of popular YA books you might want to check out.

Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver Samantha Kingston has it all, a hot boyfriend, popularity, and three best friends—but after a wild party, she loses the most important thing: her life. Available in EPUB

The Carrie Diaries by Candace Bushnell Carrie Bradshaw, before New York City, 

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Ebooks: Putting the "E" in Free

A friend of mine has recently taken to reading Moby Dick on her phone, using the Kindle for Android app. Although I like to make fun of her for reading such a formidable book on a tiny screen, she is adamant that her method is much less intimidating, because she doesn’t have to 1) lug the book around, or 2) face its visible girth, taunting her daily with unread pages. No matter your feelings on print v. electronic books, the classics, as well as the not-so-classics, are on the Web and ready to download to your computer and portable e-reading device for free.  

1923 is 

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Get the Most Out of Your Gadgets With NYPL

Were you one of the lucky ones who found a shiny new ereader or mobile device under the (nondenominational) tree? Or did you just decide 2011 was the year you would resolve to do more of your work and leisure reading on a screen?  Before you whip out your credit card for ebooks remember that other card.  NYPL might have you covered for free... read on to find out how in three easy steps!

    See if your device is compatible with our audio (MP3 and WMA format) and
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eNYPL for Apple iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch

Update 2/15/11: OverDrive Media Console Version 2.2 now adds native iPad support.

Update 12/7/2010: Good news Apple fans, OverDrive Media Console now adds support for eBooks. Same app, if you already have it, just be sure to update to the newest version. You might have to restart your device for it to recognize your checked out items the first time. While the app also works on 

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