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Posts Tagged ‘audio books’


I am a fan of Librivox.org where I have downloaded many classic audio readings to enjoy on my iPod, and at times on my laptop. (Books I Have Read.) I have recently discovered some interesting statistics at their web site. Their wonderful volunteer readers have now recorded a total of “almost” 8760 hours of audio, which means that, if one is so inclined, one could listen to Librivox.org recordings for almost an entire year (345+ days), without even a bathroom break.

Perhaps I could do that now that my iPod Touch no longer turns off automatically when I fall asleep at night whilst listening. (See yesterday’s post.)

In addition, this incredible feat was accomplished by 2140 volunteer readers, of whom sixty readers completed 50% of the recordings. That calculates to six months “non-stop” audio readings by sixty Librivox volunteers

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Apple – I am not sure that it is a “good thing” to mess around with my iPod!

It took a while for Granny Edna to get to know how to work this iPod thingamajig. I have been basically pleased with most of the new updates from Apple, especially since they stopped wiping my iPod Touch clean each time they updated. However, with this last update, some basic modes of use have been changed and totally without warning.

I first noticed it the next morning after listening to my iPod in bed, when I awoke to find my battery was dead. I am accustomed to my iPod shutting down automatically at the end of a pod-cast. Now it just keeps going and going, kinda like the energizer bunny, playing pod-cast after pod-cast and when it goes through all of the pod-casts, it starts over.

Now that little scenario is handy when listening to the iPod while driving, as before I had to start a new chapter of an audio book, each time the old chapter (podcast) finished, which meant waiting for the next red light to come along. But it is definitely not handy when I am listening to an audio book in bed and I fall asleep. When I awake, I’ve finished the entire book, but have no idea which chapters I’ve heard.

So now I’ve had to discipline myself NOT to fall asleep whilst listening. The minute I get drowsy, I must disconnect the iPod and turn it off. That’s when I discovered that the iPod Touch doesn’t turn off any more, even when done manually. Although it looks like it’s off, it really isn’t. It is still broadcasting all the podcasts it can find, even though no one is listening to them. Again – dead battery in the morning.

What happened to my iPod Touch? I looked at the settings and found none that I could control. I haven’t had a chance to look at the Online Manual yet – been too busy ranting on my blog about how much trouble this latest iPod Touch update is.

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A country without a patent office and good patent laws was just a crab, and couldn’t travel any way but sideways or backways.” ~~The Connecticut Yankee

I have just finished an audio reading of Mark Twain’s “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court” from John Greenman at Librivox.org.

Having patent attorneys amongst my descendants, I was quite captivated by the Connecticut Yankee’s valuation of patents. As soon as he had obtained rank of importance in Camelot, the Yankee wrote:

“The first thing you want in a new country, is a patent office; then work up your school system; and after that, out with your paper.”

“the very first official thing I did, in my administration — and it was on the very first day of it, too — was to start a patent office; for I knew that a country without a patent office and good patent laws was just a crab, and couldn’t travel any way but sideways or backways.

I so enjoyed Mr. Greenman’s audio presentation that I sent his reading of “Tom Sawyer” to my grandson. Now I also have been captivated by listening to Tom’s Adventures on my computer: http://www.archive.org/details/tom_sawyer_librivox.

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Whoo Whee … I finished listening to all eleven plus hours of Lizzie Driver’s reading of “Gulliver’s Travels” by Jonathan Swift. Wow! How did she do it?

What a depressing ending! Imagine returning home after, was it eleven years, and your family still loves you, but you hate and detest them all, plus your friends too. For the love of horses! And I never even knew that I was a Yahoo too. I thought Yahoos were people that I labeled as bumbling incompetents. I didn’t know I was one. And so are you, dear reader. If you don’t believe me – read the book: Gulliver’s Travels.

Now I feel like reading something fun – like “Alice in Wonderland.” But I think I read that a few weeks ago. It’s already a Vanished Memory. I ordered “Longitude” from Amazon, and it arrived today. I told Cliff that I bought it for him, as he’s a technical scientific person, but I really want to read it. I wonder if that would be fun to tackle?

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When I was a child, no one ever read “Wind in the Willows” to me. I am now making up for lost years, by listening to it on my new iPod Touch. The story of each chapter is told by a different reader at Librivox. I do not know how it is that I ever turned into the something or other that I am, without the life’s wisdom that is told by these wonderful animals in the storybook.

What a delight it was last night while listening to Kara Shallenberg reading Chapter Three – “The Wild Wood” to find myself in the old children’s tale. I am Badger. I even live on the border of the “Wild Wood.”

The Mole had long wanted to make the acquaintance of the Badger.  He seemed, by all accounts, to be such an important personage and, though rarely visible, to make his unseen influence felt by everybody about the place.  But whenever the Mole mentioned his wish to the Water Rat he always found himself put off.  ‘It’s all right,‘ the Rat would say. ‘Badger’ll turn up some day or other–he’s always turning up–and then I’ll introduce you.  The best of fellows!  But you must not only take him AS you find him, but WHEN you find him.’

‘Couldn’t you ask him here dinner or something?‘ said the Mole.

‘He wouldn’t come,‘ replied the Rat simply.  ‘Badger hates Society, and invitations, and dinner, and all that sort of thing.’

‘Well, then, supposing we go and call on HIM?‘ suggested the Mole.

‘O, I’m sure he wouldn’t like that at ALL,‘ said the Rat, quite alarmed.  ‘He’s so very shy, he’d be sure to be offended. I’ve never even ventured to call on him at his own home myself, though I know him so well.  Besides, we can’t.  It’s quite out of the question, because he lives in the very middle of the Wild Wood.’

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I am continuing to learn how to use my new iPod as a reader. I like being able to download audio books of my choosing, however I have discovered that when I click on the link at LibriVox that reads “Subscribe in iTunes,” although it does automatically download the entire book into iTunes on my computer, it in fact downloads as a Pod-cast, and shows up under Pod-casts on the iPod. In a troubleshooting mode, I returned to LibriVox to try and download an audio book as an “Audio Book.” So far, I have not been able to actually do that. The nearest I came was to do a kind of work-around by downloading the book as a zip file onto my computer and then creating a “Play-list” in the “Music” tab in iTunes. I transferred all the MP3 files of the book into the play-list, which I named with the book’s title. Now, when I want to listen to the book, I go to the Music Tab on my iPod and find it under play-lists. The “Play-list” book plays all the way through, without stopping at the end of each chapter as the pod-casts do, however … when I stop in the middle of a chapter, and then return to listening, it is necessary to begin at the beginning of that chapter again. And, of course, I have to remember to which chapter I was previously listening, no small feat to someone with “Vanishing Memories.” I cannot find a way to backtrack or to go forward in the chapters with the iPod Touch.

However, I still love it, and although I did look at the display of Sony Reader at the store, which I am sure does all of these things and more, my iPod Touch is so much smaller and easier to carry about in a pocket, purse, camera case, the palm of my hand or wherever.

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I have discovered that I can both listen to audio books and read text books on my new Ipod Touch. I am quite amazed by it all. Today I spent some time trying to learn how it works.

I expected that I would be able to download audio books. I just had to learn how to do it. Since I am interested mainly in the classics I don’t need to buy anything from the Itunes store, thank goodness. The books that I like are free at librivox.org and other places. However, I was quite astonished at how easy these are to capture. Right now I am downloading “The Secret Garden.”

This is what I have learned so far. I go to librivox.org and find the audio book or whatever that I want on my Ipod. On the catalog page for that book, there is a link that reads “Subscribe in iTunes.” I click that link and from there it automatically downloads the entire book into the iTunes player on my computer. The first time I did this I was confused because I received only the first chapter. However, I did not know that after the first chapter downloads, you go to the “Podcasts” tab in iTunes where you see the title of the book with a little black triangle to the left of it. You must click that black arrow and the “GET” button to download the remaining chapters. It is quite easy, although I do have to double check and make sure that each chapter actually downloads.

Then you synch your Ipod to your Itunes on your computer. I am about to try that now that I have downloaded two audio books. Synching to the Ipod Touch is more than a bit confusing, but eventually I am able to get it to work. I hope it works this time, as here goes.

I will explain how to read text books in another post.

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