<firstimage=”//static.makeuseof.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/books.jpg” />I love my netbook, and talk about it to no end here at MakeUseOf. I also love reading. While I prefer the feel and aesthetic of actual books to any ebook reader or laptop, I have to admit the digital world offers certain advantages: namely, unlimited access to every public domain work in existence.
But I don’t have a dedicated eBook reader, so my netbook needs to fill this role. I guess I’ve come to the same conclusion as Mark: who needs an Amazon Kindle when you have a netbook? His solution relied on Windows-only software, however, which won’t work on my Linux-based netbook.
To that extent, I’ve been looking for a simple piece of cross-platorm software to read eBooks with. After a bit of searching, I’ve settled on Lucidor. This simple, Firefox-based reader application comes with everything I want: a clean interface, the ability to browse chapters and pretty good library functionality. I’m happy with it, so if you’re looking for software to read with check it out.
Perhaps what I mostly find so awesome about Lucidor is the simplicity of its interface. When I open it up, here’s what I see:
The program recalls what I was reading last, and offers it to me. Alternatively, I can open my bookshelf or download other books from the web, but I’ll get to that later. If I click one of the books I’m currently reading, I’ll be brought immediately to the page I left off with. That’s how a reader should behave.
The other options are also pretty cool. Open up my book gallery and I can see the collection of covers that make up my library.
Okay, so my library’s not too impressive; just the issue of The Economist I downloaded using Calibre, an application I wrote about earlier this week. Still, as the weeks go by and I pick up more reading it’ll flesh out. It’s also possible to browse Project Gutenburg and other book repositories from Lucidor. Check it out:
Interested in Lucidor? Download it here.
If you’re not looking to replace your eBook reading software of choice, consider this: Lucidor is also available as a Firefox plugin. Yep, you can have a full-featured eBook reading application built into Firefox, meaning any eBook flies you click online load up instantly. It also means the book you’re reading right now could be one of your open Firefox tabs, alongside your email and your work.
This could be a fantastic way to take a glance at a given book before you decide to download it, or to hide the fact that you’re reading books at work from your boss. Check out Luifox here.
Supported Formats: Limited
This is perhaps the weakest point of Lucidor: it only supports EPUB eBooks. This doesn’t have to be too big of a shortcoming; previously mentioned Calibre fully supports converting one format to another, and Gutenburg offers most books in EPUB. Still, considering that most eBook formats are open in nature, it would be nice to have support for a few more formats.
Other shortcomings include the inability to flip the screen (I’d like to hold my netbook like a book) and the inability to make the text white with a black background. These could be quickly fixed, however, and I’m sure the Lucidor team will get to it eventually.
Lucidor is exactly what I’m looking for: a straight-forward, no-nonsense eBook reading application that works on Linux, Mac and Windows. If you’re looking for the same thing, I highly recommend you check it out.
Or, if you’re so much smarter than me that you’ve already found a much better eBook reading application, I highly recommend you share it in the comments below. I’d love to know about it! I’d also love to hear your thoughts about Lucidor: do you like it or could you do with more features?
So far no major international conflict has started because of comments here at MakeUseOf, so feel free to comment away secure in the knowledge that you’re not putting your country at risk.
Image Credit: Dawn Endico