Round up #205: Best OCR, comics & KFHD on sale

Round up #205: Best OCR, comics & KFHD on sale

The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later. 

Wanna buy a supervillain…cheap?

Right now, Amazon is having a

DC Comic Villains Sale

DC publishes Batman, Superman, and the Flash, among many others, and really has some of the coolest villains.

These are modern comics from current talents (Grant Morrison, Paul Dini, Gail Simone…).

Each one is ninety-nine cents. I’m guessing these would not be good for young kids, but I haven’t read any of these specific ones.

While I’m sure these would look better on a Kindle Fire (color can be important in comics), the “Only available on these devices” list is more robust than one might think:

  • Kindle
  • Kindle Touch
  • Kindle Paperwhite
  • Kindle Fire HD
  • Kindle Cloud Reader
  • Kindle Keyboard
  • Kindle for iPad
  • Kindle for Android
  • Kindle Fire (may or may not include 1st generation Kindle Fire; please check deliver to dropdown)

The Paperwhite, the Touch, the Mindle, and the Kindle Keyboard are all capable of showing comics effectively. Unfortunately, the Kindle DX, which is one generation farther back than the Kindle Keyboard, doesn’t have good software for it…unfortunate, because I think the larger size might be more effective.

This is a limited time sale, and might end at any point. As always, check the price before you click that “Buy” button.

Kindle Fire HD 7″ on sale again for $159…same as non-HD

While it seems pretty likely that a new Kindle Fire is coming soon (there have been supposed leaked pictures and stats), this is a good deal:

Kindle Fire HD 7″, Dolby Audio, Dual-Band Wi-Fi, 16 GB – Includes Special Offers

It’s $159…the same as the non-HD.

I would consider this Amazon’s primary tablet right now…there are two larger versions (with and without 4G), and a less expensive one.

Basing it on reviews, it goes like this:

  • This one: 17,952 at time of writing
  • Non-HD: 10,839
  • 8.9″ non-4G or with 4G: 8,679

By the way, looking at those numbers, you can see what a low percentage of people actually write reviews. There have probably been millions of these sold (although Amazon doesn’t release specific numbers).

Again, this could end at any time.

Jonathan Franzen says that Jeff Bezos is not the antichrist

Jeff: “Um…thanks?”


Note…that’s not a real quotation from Jeff Bezos…I want to be careful to make that clear. 🙂

In this

article in The Guardian

Jonathan Franzen submits a different answer to my optimist/pessimist poll question…or at least, one can draw the conclusion that the author would. 😉

Lest you think that the assessment alluded to in the headline for this story is an endorsement, the full line is

“In my own little corner of the world, which is to say American fiction, Jeff Bezos of Amazon may not be the antichrist, but he surely looks like one of the four horsemen.”

I’m going to recommend that you read the article, although you may want to be prepared to have it bring you down.

I think Franzen, as others have done, is seeing the world through the lens of the traditionally published author. While the opportunity to have someone else pay you significant money to license it so they can publish it may be diminishing (and I’m not entirely convinced that’s the case), the opportunity for authors to make money is considerably greater than it was before electronic distribution.

Many, many authors are, I’m sure, making more money than they would have in the old curated system. My intuition is that many more authors are making a living as authors, but I don’t have the stats to back that up.

To me, the world looks like it is getting better for authors.

One of the challenges will be for readers to find “better” books to read, of course, but for authors, the picture looks good…in my opinion, of course.

The best OCR I’ve ever used

I’ve been saying I want to get better OCR (Optical Character Recognition) software, and a better scanner. That’s so I can digitize public domain works I have.

Well, I’ve found one, and it’s astonishingly good!

What is it?

My new Galaxy S4 phone.

It comes with an app called Optical Reader.

You take a picture of text, and it can convert it for you.

Here is part of the results of a page I did from The Maybe Monsters, a book I believe to be in the public domain:

of the two kinds of bears were not the right size, and,
besides, bears leave claw marks that do not appear in the
snowman’s tracks. Furthermore, bears usually remain down
in the valleys.
That left the langur. “The great black-faced monkey of
the Himalayan slopes,” Sir Arthur Conan Doyle called it,
in “The Adventure of the Creeping Man” in The Case Book
<)/ Sherlock Holmes. “Biggest and most human of climbing
Again, there was the question of size of the prints. Ship-
ton answered this one:
The tracks measured rather more than 12 inches, which
would suggest that they had been made by a creature
much larger than any langur known to science.
I understand that langur monkeys are vegetarians. Now
while a carnivorous creature might feed upon marmots
and tailless Tibetan rats which inhabit the lower reaches
of these glaciers . . . a vegetarian, other than a grazing
animal, would in these parts be very far from adequate
food supplies.
What in any case is a monkey doing wandering about
in these regions of permanent snow?
Still another argument against the langur is that the langur
travels in groups. The snowman, from his tracks,
walks alone.”

Is it perfect? No, but it’s much better than what I have used before.

From the time I opened the page to the time I had it e-mailed to me? I would guess it was maybe fifteen seconds. I’ll have to time it to be sure, but that’s pretty quick.

Obviously, it’s not recognizing the line spacing between the paragraphs, but that wouldn’t be hard to fix.

The bottom of the page did not come out as well, and I presume the page was a bit bent there or not lit as well. I just did this very spontaneously…just held it up and snapped.

The negative would be having different images for each page, but I may be able to work with that.

I’ll experiment a bit more and let you know, but this is promising. It might work especially well for magazines.

What do you think? Are you interested in unconfirmed stats and images of upcoming hardware? Unless it suggests something radical, I usually prefer to wait to get the official (radical can be a fun idea, even if it doesn’t come to fruition). Do you read comics currently? Did you read them in the past, but stopped? If you could OCR your p-books, what would you do with the p-books afterwards? Feel free to let me and my readers know what you think by commenting on this post.

4 Responses to “Round up #205: Best OCR, comics & KFHD on sale”

  1. Brad Bradsher Says:

    I have a Galaxy S4 and I cannot find a optical reader with the apps on my phone

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Brad!

      Hm…everything I’ve seen suggests it should be part of the standard installation on your phone.

      I get to it by

      * Tapping Apps in my bottom right corner of the homescreen
      * Swiping left to go through them alphabetically

      It’s alphabetical under “O” for Optical Reader for me…right after Navigation. It has a circle that looks like a camera lens, and the letter “T” with a background.

  2. Brad Bradsher Says:

    Have searched all apps and cannot find it. Have a Verizon GS4. Maybe that is why.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: