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Three Essential Features of the Microsoft Reader Program for readers and book lovers


By Marie J. Skylar


October 2, 2005


On my Dell Axim Pocket PC (PDA/Handheld device) Adobe Reader makes reading a document difficult since I have to move the document often to read it from left to right.  The book reader program Microsoft Reader, on the other hand, allows the text to wrap to the next line, making reading a book or article easy to read.


Versatility to carrying several books with you anywhere you go.  I target this article and MS Reader to book loves especially because of the abundance feature.  Currently I hold 27 free ebooks on my Pocket PC – from Benjamin Franklin’s autobiography to The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton.  I can carry as many as my 512MB Secure Digital card can hold (a storage device inserted into my Axim) which can be from 500-1000 books!  When you’re out running errands having to wait in line at the bank you can easily pull out your small handheld device, read the latest entertaining fiction novel or read research material for your next project in real estate.  You don’t need to carry several books in your purse, nor waste time in waiting when you really should be catching up on your reading.  The burden of a heavy book does not have to be an excuse to be bored and frustrated in wait time. 


In bed one night you may have several choices of books to read.  With no need to bother your spouse you can easily read any book you choose from your library on MS Reader on a bright backlit display.  No lamp or reading light necessary. 


Date last read notice.  I read several books at one time period, say, over the course of a month.  At the “Library” screen of the MS Reader program the title of the book and the date it was last read shows clearly.  If I’ve read Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte 4 days ago, I see the notice and can decide to catch up toward completion whereas otherwise I tend to forget what I’ve last read and may never finish the book I’m reading!


The “Date last read” notice can help you in remembering what you need to complete, what you must catch up on, and what book you’re simply not reading or not interested in at all.  You may decide months later to reader that book you’d dreaded earlier and find that that book now has some value for you.  This feature can also have us monitor our interests by showing when we read what we read.  I can read Mansfield Park by Jane Austen today and Thomas Paine’s Common Sense a year later along with Alexander Hamilton’s The Federalist Papers see a pattern emerging from my readings.  If I like American History now versus English literature, I can delve into the topic by researching more and writing articles on that topic. 


Change Text size.  The single most important in comfort feature available with the MS Reader program is the changing text size feature.  For us readings, young and old, we need a certain comfortable text size to make reading easy.  You may choose a size best for your eyes – making it larger or smaller at will.  At night I may need a larger size text while during the day I can decrease the text size.  MS Reader with ClearType portrays the eBooks in an easy to read font. 


The MS reader program also comes with a list of all books in your “eLibrary.”  When you begin the program , you will see a list of all the books available to read in your library – those of those which you have downloaded. 


A negative aspect to the reading using the Microsoft Reader program is that any file I wish to read must be in the .LIT format and one must buy a program to create those .LIT files.  I cannot easily take any of my articles or articles of other authors and create a MS Reader file to read on my Pocket PC, but I remedy that but opening the article on MS Word or create a HTML document. 


With all these useful features on MS Reader and more why not download a free copy and purchase a priceless Pocket PC device.  If not, at least test the program on your desktop/laptop computer with a free ebook.  You’ll be surprised when you find it actually has the option to read the book aloud to you! Ebooks are the future, why not take the future in your hands now?


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