Open Source eReader (eBook)

Ebook have two meaning, and it’s important to difference them. The first meaning is the electronic version of a paper book. The other meaning, is the electronic hardware  capable to read electronic version of books. To avoid misunderstanding I’ll call the second one eReader. So this post is about Open Source eReaders.

The main difference between a Tablet and a eReader is the screen. The eReader use a special technology called electronic ink. It is not retroilluminated, so you can’t read in the darkness. This technology was developed specially for reading during long time. If you try this with an iPad, your eyes will be tired in less than half an hour. The electronic ink has another advantage, the battery usage. The eReaders only waste battery when you change  a page, so the battery capacity is not measure in hours, it is measure in pages. A normal eReader battery holds about 8000 pages.

Afer this introduction let start with its software. The most of them use Linux, but using a privative application for the visualization.

I’ll talk about two free software eReaders, and casually the incredible growth of android arrive also to this eReaders

The first one Alex:

Alex eReader

HardWare Specifications:

  • Monahan PXA303 624 MHz processor
  • 6 inch 600×800 8 level grayscale enabled with 16 grayscale capable eInk display (EPD = Electronic Paper Display)
  • 3.5 inch 320×480 capacitive touchscreen display
  • miniUSB port
  • 2GB internal Flash memory, and microSD card slot with included 2GB card
  • 802.11 b/g WiFi
  • 3.5mm headset jack
  • Stereo speakers and microphone
  • 1530 mAh Lithium Polymer battery
  • Dimensions of 8.9 x 4.7 x 0.4 inches and 11 ounces

Software functionalities:

  • Browser
  • Music
  • Gallery
  • WiFi
  • BookStore
  • Library
  • Reader

It don’t support text to speech and support up to 7500 electronic page turns, or 6 hours online browsing. Actually don’t have directory organization capability.

This eReaders seems to be good. Unfortunately I couldn’t find the developers community but I could find this at the official web page:

For The Developer – Coming Soon.

Beyond reading, beyond multimedia, music and video players, beyond email,
Alex is designed for the future and is backed by a worldwide community of Google
Android developers. You can expect more applications that you can download easily
to your Alex e-Reader — applications that will make your reading more pleasurable,
enable you to share what you read with your social network, even make calls over the
Internet for your ownreal-time book club.

Open to all registered Android Application Developers, Alex gives developers more
freedom to create differentiated reading experience applications!

The price of this wonder is about $349.00, and you can buy it in black or in white.

The official Web Page:

The second device nook:



  • Samsung S3C6410 ARM1176 Based Processor
  • 6 inch EPD = Electronic Paper Display
  • 3.5 inch touchscreen display
  • miniUSB port
  • 4GB internal Flash memory, and microSD card slot
  • 802.11 b/g WiFi
  • 3.5mm headset jack
  • 1530 mAh Lithium Polymer battery
  • Dimensions of 7.7 x 4.9 x 0.9 inches and 11.6 ounces

Software functionalities:

  • Music
  • WiFi
  • BookStore
  • Library
  • Reader

In this case we don’t have browser, that is an important  disadvantage. But if you are really interested in buying one of this two eReaders, don’t stop here, because the Nook have a developers and “hacking” community giving it new functionalities like such as Pandora‎, a web browser, a twitter client called Tweet, Google Reader,a Facebook application…

The Price of this device is around 149$ or 199$ with 3G.

The Official Web Page:

If you are interested in nook there are another version, but remember that retroilluminated screens are a disadvantage for eReaders:

  • NOOKcolor screen

5 Responses to Open Source eReader (eBook)

  1. Pingback: eBooks Open-Source [ENG]

  2. Jack says:

    Yo sermelo (dawg), I heard you liked blog posts, so I put up a blog post about your (very interesting) blog post!

    All the best, cars2scrap.

  3. adi says:

    wow !!!!! This cool, I like it, I’ll try it

  4. LaVonneJacob says:

    Need free ereader software.

  5. Pingback: Wi Fi Horizon, use copoun inside

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