Headphones and a soothing voice are what I’ve been accustomed to for years now when I attempt to get in some recreational reading/listening. Audio books have long been my method of choice simply because multi tasking, say a long road trip or a busy work schedule are made possible. Juggling multiple projects at once fits right in to a busy American lifestyle. Today, however, I rediscovered a past holiday gift to my daughter sitting out on a shelf collecting dust. A tech gadget that I assumed would be the least popular gift that year, as it was related to reading.
Books weren’t as popular as I would have liked them to be for my children, but I haven’t anyone to blame for that except my self. Being a visual creative person, I opt for someone els’s translation of stories to popular mediums like movies. I tried my best to avoid collecting paper formatted media in all it’s bulky space taking forms. As a military brat I absolutely despised having to move two ton boxes full of mums magazines or cook books from moving truck to house over a period of years. It was dreadful, and made me the minimalist that I am today.
All of my media is digital these days, as I would imagine most people’s collections might be and I tend to keep even those collections light. Hoarding is hoarding after all. It’s not easy going in to places like Barnes and Noble or a library without cringing at all of the printed material while simultaneously being thrilled about the surrounding amount of endless entertainment. Squeeze it all in to my phone please, which is what’s happened over the years with the likes of online shopping. Couldn’t be happier, you know?
I still like to ‘read’ though, and if I’m going to take in a story by a popular author, it’s all about the audio book! I could use the old fashioned and completely outdated ‘books on tape’, or even whatever it might have been decades before cassettes, but lets just call them audio files. I spend hours downloading audio files and organizing them in my library for future use, and even scouring the internet for the perfect display art so that my iTunes list is complete with full color covers and brief descriptions. Don’t judge me!
Well, there it was sitting on the dresser in a bedroom I frequent during my visits to Oklahoma City. Already outdated as far as tech in concerned and un-loved there was no denying the usability of this little device. The battery had long since drained, but the E-Ink display still showed instructions for plugging in to recharge. I started to think that I even if I avoided books because of bulkiness, I had in my hand the ability to collect and read more traditionally, without staking up a ton of books. As for multi tasking, that just isn’t in the cards, but maybe unplugging most devices and concentrating on just one is what I need.
This thing is small, with tons of space for books, that I was surprised to learn are pretty damn small files. I don’t know why that was a surprise lol, but this is why computers only needed kilobytes to megabytes of space back in the early days of home computing. I’ve already started to load up the Nook with some old favorites that I’ve listened to, just to try and get a feel for actual reading. The screen is roughly the size of a traditional paper book, and the screen looks very much like printed paper. It doesn’t light up, which is probably best as I want to feel like I am actually holding a book in proper lighting conditions for these aging eyes.
Going backwards can be a strange thing, when you’ve been staring at laptops, tablets and other lit screens for years. Now if only I can just ignore notifications pinging, buzzing and chiming from my other gadgets, I might make it through a chapter or two.