Edgy And Audacious - A Tale Of Tags
Wednesday, January 12, 2011 12:55:32 PM
It all started before Christmas. Knowing that Android tablet computers were coming out and getting cheaper all the time I started looking into them. I've really started getting into e-books recently as I've found books that are out of print in paper format anymore and been reading them on my phone. Unfortunately a phone isn't the best device to read books on (although my current device isn't as bad as some and actually provides an enjoyable experience the odd book, but is limited by applications that can't manage many formats or only have limited space for novels) so I started looking into e-reader devices. One quick price check on the web, a few hours sobbing later and I tearfully reunited with my phone, stroking her and telling her I'd never leave her again (my fingers were crossed - don't you judge me). As I'm sure you've gathered from that last sentence, dedicated e-reader devices are bloody expensive. That's when I hit on an Android tablet device as the best solution. Android is cheap enough that the devices can be manufactured quite cheaply, the operating system has several high powered e-reader applications (my current favourite is Aldiko) out on it and there are plenty of other applications available that can upgrade the functionality as and when I need to so I figured that the price would probably be worth it for one of those. Even so, I wasn't willing to pay over a hundred pounds for one and they weren't quite that cheap yet. A couple of days after Christmas, Kim found one of the tablets (a Chinese knockoff - you know the sort) heavily discounted on a site and we ended up ordering it. There's actually a story there. See, I thought Kim was saying that she knew of the site and that it was alright and she thought I was saying the same thing so, bolstered by knowing the other knew of the site, we put the order in. After the money had gone we realised our mistake and went hunting for reviews of the site to set our minds at ease. It wasn't pretty and we spent the next two weeks worried that the single good review amongst the hundreds of bad ones was the more accurate. Anyway the tablet arrived yesterday with no problems (and no customs charges ) and I've been setting it up ever since. For half the price of most dedicated e-readers I now have a device capable of reading all formats of e-book after downloading four e-reader applications (none of which are available for Symbian unfortunately, even Amazon's Kindle which they made from the Symbian Mobipocket application that they bought years ago and then discontinued so it hasn't been updated for later devices) as well as both formats of digital comic book, which is something else I've been getting back into. On top of that I get to truly experience Android on my own device (official opinion - still needs work but currently the only true contender for Symbian's crown).
So tablet in hand I transferred all of my e-books into the device and left it overnight to import them all into the relevant applications. Unfortunately, though I've been downloading book collections recently, deleting the irrelevant ones and editing the metadata on ones I want to keep, I somehow managed to send all of the unedited files over including the books I'd tried to delete from my library resulting in over 200 extra books (including a Mills & Boon ) being added and over 600 that needed editing again. One of those was The Da Vinci Code (as I said it's average, not specifically bad, so I'd decided to leave it on) and when I opened the metadata on that I got the shock of my life. Whoever had uploaded this book needs a bloody slap. Over a hundred tags were present on that one book alone, and they weren't even the sorts of things you'd need. I mean it had been tagged with "da vinvi;" for crap's sake. Who in their right mind would think "Oh, I just fancy reading that Da Vinci book now. Luckily I tagged it with the title so I can find it more easily."? Other tags included "art gallery", "art gallery curators" and the rather laughable "art gallery curators - crimes against" (because obviously there are so many books that fit that description). Then there were three separate "Leonardo" tags, each with a different spelling (and none of them the correct spelling either). For deity's sake people, if you can't spell it then give up - it's not like you'd search for that by that tag anyway. Also included was "cookery" (I suppose because someone cooks in the book?), "comic books and graphic novels" (I actually checked at seeing that and it was neither of those), "novel" (does that really narrow anyone's book collection down?), "vampire eroticism" (have you even read this book, dude???) and the ever descriptive "telephone". It's not bloody needed!