Tuesday, December 30, 2008

woop woop woop geek alert woop woop woop

"Good sense is, of all things among men, the most equally distributed; for everyone thinks himself so abundantly provided with it, that those even who are the most difficult to satisfy in everything else, do not usually desire a larger measure of this quality than they already possess." Rene Descartes, from Discourse On The Method, published 1637.

Peeps, if you're luck enough to have an iPhone, you need to download Stanza. It's a free app, and you pay for the ebooks you download. (It's similar to the Amazon Kindle, but it's missing a few features like a built-in dictionary.) Since most of the geek stuff I read is old and in the public domain, it's free. Yay Nerd Lit!

With Stanza, you get access to a huge catalog. Once you've downloaded your books, you can flip through the covers like you can flip through cd covers on iTunes. The downloads seem to be really fast. I downloaded both the Stanza app and Northanger Abbey while riding the bus down Hillsborough Street. (I had to restrain myself from the "YES!" and fist pumping outburst when I finished that download.) In fact, I've been downloading stuff as I've been typing. I've downloaded more that I could carry out of the used bookstore.

I am thrilled to see I can download books in other languages as well. To find books, I can search by author, subject, or even by book lists. I just found a list called "Banned Books" that begins with Sons and Lovers. If you're so inclined, you can even download magazines and newspapers.

Y'all remember I was a lit major, right?

I can't describe to you how impressed I am with this application. In the span of 30 minutes, I've been able to download 16 books. Tomorrow morning on my way to work, I will be able to choose from a number of fantastic books. I will never be bored again! Oh and next time I run into Dancing Queen and her sycophant friend, I can bust out the Stanza and go, "No, really. It's Kafka. See? Here it is!"

Because I know y'all are on the edge of your seats waiting to hear what I downloaded....

Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

Vanity Fair by Thackery

Discourse On The Method by Descartes (seriously? I get to read this on my iPhone? sweet!)

The Time Machine by HG Wells (they start you with that one

Les Trois Mousquetaires by Dumas (my favorite writer, and this one is in French!)

On The Duty Of Civil Disobedience by Ralph Waldo Emerson

Portrait Of A Lady by Henry James

Washington Square by Henry James

Candide by Voltaire

A Room With A View by EM Forester

Dead Souls by Gogol

Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton

The Count of Monte Cristo by Dumas (I said he was my favorite. and I lost my copy)

The Divine Comedy by Dante (no, really, I did.)

sound of crickets chirping
Guys? Anyone still there? Hey! Where'd ya go?


Kristina P. said...

Yeah, I'm not lucky enough to have an iPhone. Thanks for rubbing it in.

Meg said...

Then I shouldn't mention they have Twiight? Sorry. :(

Emily said...

This is cool....I just read another blog that mentioned Kindle too. I need to try this out.

Cellar Door said...

Dead Souls is the only one I've read! But it's a wonderful book. It's amazing.

I'll have to check those others...

Meg said...

Yeah, Emily, you should check it out. Stanza is brilliant!

I'm so happy I haven't chased my readers away with my geekiness. Yay!

FoxyMoron said...

Didn't chase me away girlie, been out all day.

I am going to try to find some of these titles. I need to start reading seriously again, my brain is turning to mush.

And um....what is an Iphone? (I'm turning 50 next year, remember??)

Andrew said...

I guess I'm just behind the times, but I actually enjoy the books themselves.

Sorta like pulling out an LP, cleaning it, and carefully placing it on the turntable and dropping the needle on some Miles Davis. Starting it in iTunes just doesn't have the same effect. I can't imagine settling into my favorite leather chair by the fire with 3 fingers of Scotch in cut crystal with a warm blanket to pull out my phone and read literature off of a little screen and listen to compressed audio on earbuds.

Yes, I'm a 36 year old dinosaur.

Meg said...

Now, I still like me books. Especially my cloth bound editions. Don't get me wrong!

I also commute an hour and a half to two hours a day and I travel A LOT. If I'm at home, I'll definitely read a book, but if I'm on a plane or a bus, this just means one less thing I have to lug around.

You are correct, sir. A comfy chair, a good drink and a real book is still a great pleasure.

Anonymous said...

That's some list. Isn't technology wonderful?

I never really understand why Sons and Lovers or Lady Chatterly's Lover for that matter were banned. I can recommend Women in Love and The Rainbow too. Oh - and Don Quijote de la Mancha.

Happy reading!

CailinMarie said...

OMG! I'm getting divorced and stalking Andrew! Oh, sorry, random outburts aside... you downloaded Dante and it fit?!? Good gracious! That is amazing. I'm going to have to figure this out... how very cool. I would think it is especially nice for a bus rider like yourself. That is quite the reading list - I am inspired!

Andrew said...

Hey CailinMarie, stalk me all you want! You bring the Scotch!


Meg said...

Oh good lord!

I'm sorry, Tim. I'm so sor...hey waidaminute! Does this mean Tim is now single cuz he's kinda hot. Tim, call me! ;)