Saturday, 15 November 2014

The Digital Reader

The Digital Reader

Marvin Developer Appstafarian Releases New Reading App – Gerty

Posted: 15 Nov 2014 04:49 PM PST

Gerty web icon The developer of one of the more feature rich Epub apps for iPad and iPhone released a second reading app last month called Gerty

While Marvin is designed to satisfy the most exacting typography nut, Gerty was crafted as a reading journal app. It’s currently only available for the iPhone (the iPad version is coming soon) and according to the developer it was “designed for small devices first, unlike Marvin”.

Gerty of course supports Epub and has many features in common with Marvin, but it’s primary focus is as a reading journal. You can use it to log your reading habits as you work through an ebook, but the features list also mentions some Goodreads-esque journaling features, including:

  • Separate library for paper and eInk books, magazines, and other publications
  • Scan barcodes to look up info and covers of your paper books
  • Organise your books in shelves
  • Bulk manage, sort and filter books

I’m told it’s also designed to work with Marvin as its journal app.

I chattted with Kristian Guillaumier on Twitter earlier today that among the other ways that Gerty differed from Marvin included “a more modern renderer, better EPUB 3 support, and carefully chosen defaults instead of massive amounts of settings.”

He went on to add that “I also wanted to do something for more casual readers who find Marvin too complex, and and experiment with vertical-only reading (scroll done right).”

gerty iphone 1 gerty iphone 2 gerty iphone 3 gerty iphone 4

Gerty is free in iTunes, but some features are only available in the paid version of the app. Both Gerty and Marvin will continue to be developed.

Gerty FAQ


The post Marvin Developer Appstafarian Releases New Reading App – Gerty appeared first on The Digital Reader.

What to do With an iPad with a Broken Screen

Posted: 15 Nov 2014 08:57 AM PST

15101952494_3858fd306f[1]Has anyone else noticed that no one seems to be reusing iPads with broken screens?

I recently decided to replace my 4 year old iPad 2. (It had long had a broken screen, and with last year’s iPad Air costing $100 less this year an upgrade made sense.) Once I had the new one on my desk and went googling for help on what to do next, I was surprised by the lack of instructions on how to upgrade as well as by the lack of posts on how to reuse an old iPad with a broken screen.

From what I can see online, hardly anyone is repurposing iPads with broken screens for other uses; they’re either junking them, selling them to a reseller/recycler like Glyde, or repairing them manually.

That is very different from Android tablets, where you can find any number of suggestions on how to repurpose a tablet with a broken screen (I even wrote a post on the topic). An Android tablet can be repurposed as a OP security camera, a media server, or for other uses, but most of the apps which are required for those uses don’t exist for the iPad – or at least I can’t find them in Google.

And so I am probably going to end up selling my old iPad. There’s a bunchaton of online services that will buy even a busted iPad 2. Gazelle, for example, offered me $35. Glyde offered me $37. There were other offers, but those were the highest.

Now that I have fully migrated to my new iPad, I’m probably going to take Glyde up on their offer. Speaking of which, here are the steps I took to upgrade. Apple makes the process very simple but I couldn’t find any instructions online.

  1. Update iTunes. The later model iPads require newer versions of iTunes, so you’ll want to update this first. (This is an app I leave shut down, and not running in the background, so my copy hadn’t been updated in years.)
  2. Plug the old iPad into your PC over USB, and use iTunes to create a manual backup. (You can also create a backup in iCloud but the direct option is faster.) Depending on how much crud you’ve accumulated on your iPad, this process could take anywhere from a few minutes to hours.
  3. Unplug the old iPad, and set it aside.
  4. Set up the new iPad, and when asked choose the option to load the backup from iTunes.

That last step will take a while, and you’ll have to leave the new iPad plugged in while it’s in process. But you don’t actually have to watch it the entire time, so it’s not all bad.

Once you’ve confirmed that the backup has been properly installed, you might want to reset the old iPad as a security precaution; this erases the personal info on the tablet, and wipes the files you left behind. You can find the reset option at the bottom of the general menu in the settings menu.


All in all, I really like the new iPad but I’m not seeing anything to make me regret waiting so long to upgrade. The new unit is nice, but the older iPad 2 did everything I need – except for run the latest apps which required iOS8.

I was still on iOS6 because I never got around to upgrading to iOS7 until it was too late. (It’s strange, but I was unable to go from iOS6 to iOS7.1 without first installing iOS7, and by the time I figured that out it was too late to install iOS7.)

image by dmott9


The post What to do With an iPad with a Broken Screen appeared first on The Digital Reader.

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