I’m an avid reader and have embraced the move to digital. An internet connection gives me access to thousands of books with a device that’s thinner than a single book. What I grapple with are the reading apps - I can’t find one that does everything I want.

On my iPad, I have iBooks, Readmill, Oyster, Kindle, and ShuBook with each having a separate use case. iBooks and the Kindle app are for books that I purchased from iTunes and Amazon, respectively. Oyster is a great ebook subscription service but I’m limited to the books available in their library. I discovered ShuBook when I wanted to host my own ebook server but have switched to Readmill due to the much nicer reading experience, a web interface to manage my library, and cross-device syncing.

Ideally, I’d be able to use Readmill for everything. I don’t mind paying for books but I do mind paying to be locked into a particular ecosystem. The creation of content should be decoupled from the distribution of content which should be decoupled from the consumption of content. Yet these days they’re tightly coupled. The only real way to overcome these restrictions is to become a digital pirate. It sucks that customers are forced to break laws in order to get the best experience.


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