Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Dave Ghidiu

Your Highlights

Kindle technology has gotten so good. I'm not talking about the Paperwhite (which is really cool). I'm talking about the fringe benefits of Kindle. If you don't own a Kindle or use the free app (available on iOS and Android), you are missing out on more than just reading. You're missing out on immersing yourself in the reading experience.

The Kindle.
This has rekindled my reading habits.

When reading a book on a Kindle (and when I say Kindle, I mean either a Kindle device, the free app for mobile devices, or the cloud reader that allows you to read any book you've purchased right on the web), you can highlight words or passages. You can even leave notes that are associated with the highlights.

In college, I always highlighted important passages. And I'd leave numerous  bookmarks in my book. I was reading a book my dad gave me a few years ago, and I didn't want to write in it but there were a lot of takeaways. So I put a sticky on every page with the hope of aggregating them all in a notebook when I was done with the book (this never happened).

On your device, you can pull up all the highlights and notes that you've made in your book. Which is kind of neat if you want to review the content (like reading all the important things you've identified in a text before a test). I sometimes highlight vocabulary words that I want to introduce into my vocabulary (Kindle's even have an onboard dictionary to help decrypt all those pesky words). 

Area 51: An Uncensored History of America's Top Secret Military Base by
Annie Jacobsen is a very good book. I highly recommend e-reading it.

But a lesser known fact is that if you are on a computer, you can go to http://kindle.amazon.com/your_highlights and see all the highlights and notes you have made. 

What's even neater is that they can then be copied and pasted into one document (Google Doc, anyone?). So you could theoretically aggregate all your highlights and comments into one document (and could even share it with others in a study group via Google Drive and they can add to the list). Or share a Google Drive Document where students can record the highlighted vocab words that they think are worthwhile while they are reading.

I leave you with some of the quotes from recent books I've read. Enjoy!




"Laymen, in Strike’s experience, were obsessed with motive: opportunity topped the professional’s."  
Robert Galbraith, J. K. Rowling 


"For privacy, all of the glass-walled offices aboard The Mendacium were built with 'suspended particle device' glass. The transparency of SPD glass was easily controlled by the application or removal of an electric current, which either aligned or randomized millions of tiny rodlike particles suspended within the panel."
Dan Brown 



"There is a place in the northeastern United States in which the houses are packed together like a hobo’s teeth: all the same dirty off-white template with bits broken off here and there and crooked gaps in-between through which tufts of green sprout to remind the passers-by that the neighborhood isn’t completely sterile, as if the smell weren’t enough.  Actually, and lamentably, there are a lot of places in the northeastern United States like that, but this one, in upstate New York, goes by the name of Arkham.  And this night in Arkham the moon was full and the roiling storm clouds overhead had just begun to excrete their contents to the accompaniment of creeping thunder and crepitating lightning.  The claw-like branches of a naked oak tree swayed madly in the wind next to a circular, cobwebbed attic window, casting twisted shadows into the attic as lightning flashed behind it."
Justin Noia




"'I lent you money and you returned it. That was but a neighbourly action and we are now quits.' 'We are never quits with those who oblige us,' said Dantes, 'when we no-longer-owe them money we owe them gratitude.'"
Alexandre Dumas





"I need you to be clever, Bean. I need you to think of solutions to problems we haven't seen yet. I want you to try things that no one has ever tried because they're absolutely stupid. 
He thought of a half dozen ideas before he went to sleep. Ender would be pleased -- every one of them was stupid."
Orson Scott Card 

Dave Ghidiu

About Dave Ghidiu -

Dave Ghidiu is a Senior Instructional Designer for Open SUNY.

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