You’re not limited to simply altering the text that appears on some of the screens - you can actually add additional functions, though this is where things start to become somewhat less straightforward.
For a simple tweak, look at the
applicationStart.xml file. You’ll see definitions near the top for the different keys, for example:
<string key="6" do="doDigit" />
for the non-numeric keys, there are entries such as:
<boolean key="0x27" do="doCenter"/> <boolean key="0x27-hold" do="doCenter"/>
Assigning a global built-in function to one of these keys is achieved by changing the value of the do parameter. A popular tweak uses the long press on the centre of the navigation button to shut the Reader down, though you could equally choose to use it to much the audio. Just change the
do= value to
doMute if you prefer.
More complex customisations tend to rely on adding extra code in the
main.xml file. Look through, and you’ll see that there’s a group tag for the different screens, as for the About screen that we tinkered with earlier. The
<code> tag allows you to define specific functions for that page, each within its own
Look, for example, at the
PAGE_GROUP, where you’ll find a function with the id
“pageChanged” which updates the bottom of the screen with the current page of the current book. A similar function is found in menus.
And another popular hack adds a clock to the bottom of the screen. A call to
this.shd_clock() is added at the bottom of
“pageChanged”. Then, a new function
shd_clock is defined, using a function tag, which starts like this:
<function id="shd_clock"><![CDATA[ var time = new Date(); var show = "";
It goes on to checks the preferences for clock display, and shows the time in the appropriate format, each time the page is changed. A companion function on the About screen uses the 0 key to toggle the clock display between off, 12 and 24 hour. It begins by using
doDigit, then checking if the 0 key was pressed, and setting a preferences option appropriately.
Yep, temptation won in the end.
I bought one of the Sony readers recently because it clearly now does a little more than when first released and there is so much material to read. And it seems there are people dedicated to removing the defective-by-design DRM from protected books so many of those can be had free too. But of course if the publishers would make eBooks a little cheaper then buying them would feel less of a rip-off.
Now, all I need is to find time to live, work and sleep in between reading and I'm all set!
@ Well, pretty much everybody
I've had a PRS505 ever since they went on sale in the UK, being both a book buff (whatever one of those is) and a lover of gadgetry in all its forms.
Several points spring to mind:
1) As has been said, when travelling, one PRS505 is way more portable than even a couple of paperbacks. Compared to the 5 or 6 paperbacks I used to carry, it's no contest, and the electronic version allows even more variety. Battery life is good for 2 week trips without a recharge, even when spending hours every evening in hotel rooms reading.
2) The price. I paid £200 for mine. However, I have read well over 100 free books on it, there's a huge amount of copyright free classic stuff out there for free download. As these are all out of copyright, they would normally retail at £2-3 in paperback, so the device has paid for itself and more, and has expended my reading as a bonus.
3) The scope. There's a load of stuff out there for download that is out of print, or never made it into print in the first place. I've found loads of stuff from the golden age of Science Fiction, for example, all out of copyright and freely available. One day I might buy a book for download, but I doubt it will happen any time soon.
The lack of depreciation despite there being no stock shortage should be the clue. These are deeply gorgeous machines (let down, as ever, by the shite supporting software - pull your finger out, Sony....).
@Gerard Krupa: re PDFs
If your reader isn't rendering PDFs well, make sure you're running the latest firmware. I agree that the firmware that shipped with my 505 was hopeless on PDFs, but since getting the new firmware I read quite a bit in PDFs and it's totally fine.
Since PDF is a page-description format, it's really not suitable for ebooks, and it's foolish for people to publish ebooks as PDFs, but if that's all you have, then reflowing like the new firmware does is about the best that can be done.
home insurance clain? or some such similar insurance prod to replace rather than repair?
i wouldn't mind one of these but i'm a habitual late-adopter.. mostly due to financial constraints.. and i might never put the thing down if i had one and that might be a bad thing.
i liked the article and it's light approach as an intro on how-to etc. well written, more of this please Monsenior El Vulture.. this is much better than the bash-the-government-for-yet-another-software-snafu stuff.. :)