David Warlick, an educator and thinker who has been one of my personal “yodas” for many years, has published a new book on Lulu titled, “A Gardener’s Approach To Learning: Cultivating your Personal Learning Network.” I learned about this book recently after our convener team announced the theme for the 2010 K-12 Online Conference, “Cultivating the Future.” I’m not sure who, but someone commented to the effect, “Isn’t David Warlick’s new book about cultivating learning connections?” Indeed it is! David’s 2005 book “Raw Materials for the Mind” (4th edition) and “Redefining Literacy” (I have version 1.0) were pivotal books I read in the late 1990s and early 2000s. I used these books in the first college classes I taught about educational technology. I’m sure this new book by David is one I want to read, reflect on, and share. Since I have an iPad, however, it seemed logical to purchase the $5 PDF eBook version from Lulu instead of the $20 print version which would have to ship to my house. In this post, I’ll share the options I explored and the the solution I found (the Goodreader app for iPad) to start reading this PDF eBook on my tablet.
The iPad in its current iteration is limited in several ways and cannot fully function as a standalone computing device. One example of these limitations is revealed in purchasing a PDF eBook from Lulu like David’s latest work.
It IS possible to click the PDF link shown above on an iPad and view the PDF document in the Safari web browser, but it is NOT possible to “save it” to the iPad’s flash memory directly from Safari. (If you know how to do this, please correct me in the comments to this post and let me know!) Both the Stanza iPad app (free) and the Goodreader iPad app (99¢) offer the option to DIRECTLY download a PDF file to your iPad using a complete, valid Internet web address. Unfortunately, however, the download security on Lulu is configured to NOT allow this. I copied and pasted my provided Lulu PDF download link into both iPad applications, and both failed. I could NOT figure out how to transfer this PDF file into an eReader application on the iPad without using my laptop computer. Perhaps this will be addressed and become possible in the future, but at this point it appears to be mandatory to use a computer to download and transfer security-protected files like purchased Lulu eBook PDFs.
I first gave Stanza a try to transfer this PDF eBook. Stanza has free computer-based software programs for both Macintosh and Windows, which can be used to convert PDF files into eBook formats and transfer files over a local wifi connection to an iOS device. Unfortunately, while Stanza IS free and DOES work, it seems to often “make a mess” when converting many PDF files to ePub format. You can see in the screenshot below duplicates of the title are inserted, the table of contents looks jumbled, and overall the conversion just doesn’t look very professional.
I decided I needed an iPad eBook reading option which looks better.
Goodreader is the solution I found. Goodreader provides several other options for transferring files from your computer to the application on your iPad in addition to entering/using a direct web URL. I chose the browser-based file transfer option. This requires that you connect BOTH your computer (which has the PDF file you want to transfer) and your iPad connected to the SAME wifi network / access point. I clicked the wifi / airport icon near the lower right corner of the Goodreader application on my iPad, and the iPad’s IP address as well as Goodreader-specific port number was displayed.
I entered this IP address and port number into my computer’s web browser, and connected to the Goodreader browser-based file transfer interface.
Just as I would with an email file attachment, I browsed to David’s eBook PDF file on my hard drive and chose to UPLOAD SELECTED FILE. The iPad screen then changed to show a file transfer was in progress.
After a few seconds, the file transfer finished and I was ready to start reading David’s eBook on my iPad!
Goodreader for iPad is DEFINITELY worth 99¢. It’s the best iPad option I’ve found yet for reading PDF eBooks.
Is there a way to transfer a Lulu purchased PDF file directly to an iPad without using a laptop or desktop computer? Are there better options for reading PDF eBooks than those I’ve highlighted here?
In case you noticed and were wondering, looking at the above screenshots… Yes, my iPad IS named “Gandalf.” 🙂
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- To-Do and Task Manager Options - 2014
- Images and Thoughts From Back to School Night - August 2011 - 2011
- Starting the School Year Off Right with a Faculty & Staff Lip Dub - 2011
- $15 fine for cell phone use during class - 2010
- Two worthy quotations on leadership and passion - 2009
- Thinking conservatively about public WiFi security and Smartphone tethering - 2009
- Missing mobile alert in GMail - 2008
- Goodstein on "Totally Wired" Students - 2008
- Teachers.tv: Kids, Social Safety & Digital Literacy - 2008