Audiobooks

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Signious
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Audiobooks

Post by Signious »

Hey, I'm just curious - How many people on this forum have tried, or regularly resort to audio books for your reading (or listening). I do it mainly because it forces you to take in every single word of the book, and you cannot develop 'wandering eye disorder' and peak ahead. Also my eyes tend to dry out after about 15 min of reading anything in small type closely spaced together - so audio books are the logical answer. I do read paper copies from time to time if I become interested in a book that isn't available, but you can find most work out their. Thoughts / discussion anyone?

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Re: Audiobooks

Post by mountainmage »

I have listened to one audiobook in my life: Angels and Demons by Dan Brown. I just prefer reading. If my eyes start to wander, I feel reading it out loud helps, but I try not to because it's quicker to read it in my mind then speaking every word. Plus, my throat dries out pretty quickly. I can read for hours and hours, whereas listening to somebody read it eventually bores me.
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Re: Audiobooks

Post by smiley_cow »

I generally prefer reading. If I find I'm having trouble focusing on reading for the moment, I also won't listen to an audio book. Audio books are nice though for long car rides when CBC decides it's going to an hour on preserves or something equally boring and I have nothing else to listen to.
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Re: Audiobooks

Post by LordRetard »

I'm an awful listener. I'm an awful reader too, but it's easier to flip back and see what I missed instead of rewinding a tape and searching for it. I just don't pay enough attention to anything, so while it's a hassle that I can spend a month or two on any book it's still more difficult to listen to someone drone on in my ear when I'm clearly not paying attention.

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Re: Audiobooks

Post by Edminster »

Dead tree for me, thank you. Audiobooks go by so slow, you know?

I tried to solve that by speeding up the playback once, but it just made the book sound like it was being read by the Chipmunks. :(
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Oldrac the Chitinous
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Re: Audiobooks

Post by Oldrac the Chitinous »

I'm also a regularbook kind of guy. Mostly because I'm more likely to find what I'm looking for in book form at any given library. That, and it just takes me more effort to process things I hear than things I read.
I do listen to audiobooks in the car once in a while, but I don't think I could afford to miss the Preserves Hour.
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Re: Audiobooks

Post by wolf »

It's weird, audiobooks I cannot do but I do enjoy listening to someone else read aloud. Nothing beats being able to actually feel and hold a book. They even smell good. (I have trouble reading text on a screen so no digital books)
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Re: Audiobooks

Post by smiley_cow »

I used to have trouble reading text on a screen, but for some reason it's not something that bothers me anymore. Of course it makes a difference now that I have a laptop I can sit in a comfortable chair and read instead of sitting at a desk all day, that and I think discovering the Gutenberg Project were the biggest factors in me getting over reading text on a screen. Given the choice though I think I'd still prefer a real book, it's much more convenient to be able to carry whatever you're reading around with you, and it just feels more human.
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Re: Audiobooks

Post by Lethal Interjection »

The closest thing to audio books I have encountered was that once upon a time I had an mp3 of Christopher Walken reading The Raven.
Personally, I will always go with actual books. The only thing that might change my mind is if there is someone interesting reading it (as above).

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Re: Audiobooks

Post by AHMETxRock »

It's okay, but shouldn't be used to replace real reading. God knows there are so many people with that trouble as it is already.
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Re: Audiobooks

Post by LordRetard »

I struggle with it every day.

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doctoracula
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Re: Audiobooks

Post by doctoracula »

I'll only go out of my way to get an audiobook if I know it's different enough from the actual book to make it worth while. Some examples are America: The Book and The Areas of my Expertise.

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SilverSeraph
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Re: Audiobooks

Post by SilverSeraph »

I am here to represent the Audio book, or more precisely the podiobook.

My first introduction to audio books was "The Scarlet Letter" because I had to read it for English in high school and I hadn't really read a single book for English class that whole year (but I kicked ass and participated in discussions)

Anyway, my mom got me the book on tape and I finished it in one day, WAY ahead of when I was supposed to. (I was amazing during discussions that time) I still like it, it is one of my favorite books, and it REALLY helped me understand it. It didn't help when I read "Tess of the Durbervilles." That book was crazy retarded.

A few years later I heard about podcasted books from somewhere, so I downloaded "7th Son" by J.C. Hutchins and I have began listening to all sorts of books since. I highly recommend anything by Scott Sigler especially the Infected series, The 7th Son trilogy by J.C. Hutchins, The Heaven series and Playing for Keeps by Mur Lafferty. The Max Quick series and Shadowmagic are pretty good too.

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Re: Audiobooks

Post by AHMETxRock »

Perhaps it is a good way of getting across information, but it complely ignores an entire facet of information gathering. This severely impairs a person's ability to learn by other means. The generations of children raised in front of television sets has done wonders for producing creative types adept at both the audio and the video, but the ability to read is so hindered already. There is a certain feel that you can only get from reading, and many people do not explore this. Audiobooks are great for when you want to be entertained by a story while driving I guess, but the way most people use it really is a crying shame.
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SilverSeraph
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Re: Audiobooks

Post by SilverSeraph »

AHMETxRock wrote:Perhaps it is a good way of getting across information, but it complely ignores an entire facet of information gathering. This severely impairs a person's ability to learn by other means. The generations of children raised in front of television sets has done wonders for producing creative types adept at both the audio and the video, but the ability to read is so hindered already. There is a certain feel that you can only get from reading, and many people do not explore this. Audiobooks are great for when you want to be entertained by a story while driving I guess, but the way most people use it really is a crying shame.
By your logic we should subtitle all movies, and then it will be acceptable. One more way of gaining information makes it all the better. I beg to differ. Firstly, for years and years story telling was an oral tradition, where legends and tales were passed down by word of mouth, a primarily auditory system. Then written language came about and they were written down, thus the tradition of oral story telling took a hit and went by the wayside. I'll get back to this line of thought later.

If by "learn by other means" you mean "to learn by reading" then yes, totally erasing all reading will make reading less prevalent in our system of education. However if you mean that the mere existence of audiobooks somehow threatens literacy then I submit that the concept of literacy has grown so anemic already that it SHOULD be drug out behind the shed and put out of it's misery. In any case the existence of audiobooks is not the downfall of society or literacy, neither is television. The downfall of society and literacy is poor education, or no education, which is the fault of individuals and not inanimate objects like television or audiobooks, in fact television and audiobooks are tools which can be used to inspire an interest in education and even reading (For example, Wishbone and Reading Rainbow television shows, and Audiobooks can act just as similar to a parent reading to their child.)

The ability to read is not a creative art. It is a good skill to have, but it is NOT a creative skill. The ability to write is, and that is impacted by any type of story conveyed in ANY form, be it visual or auditory. Being a good writer does take exposure to great works of any and every variety, but it also takes talent, practice, and a little stroke of luck and/or inspiration. I also submit that Audiobooks are MUCH MORE work than regular books. Being from a Digital Media background I know that sound is VERY important to a story, often more important than the visual. Sound effects and music adds TONS of information to your brain and envelops the listener in an experience that can stir emotions, if used improperly they can ruin a story. It is true, though that many audiobooks do not use music or sound effect, but still they are much more complicated to produce than the printed word. The author, or reader if the author isn't reading the book, has to go in studio and read the entire paragraphs of manuscript without undue pause or error, which is much harder than it sounds. If the reader is good, they will also need to add the proper inflections to his/her voice as they read, or perhaps even add different consistent voices to characters if they are really good. (Or they could have a full voice cast to do voices of a single characters or a group of character, that makes the single reader's job a little easier ans spreads the burden onto a group which all must preform well, and requires an extended casting call in pre-production and loads of more work for the editing staff in post) He/she must do this until they have a good take of every section of the book, then the editor(s) must take the good takes and string them together to form a the final audio, the better the reader(s) did in production, the easier the editor's job is, but all too often the phrase "We can fix it is post" is used. Perhaps the certain feel you get from reading that you don't get from audiobooks is the absence of that important and powerful audio stimulation. Perhaps you are free to fill in your own sounds and voices when you read but and I prefer to experience the book as they author imagined it, to share in his vision (I am only speaking of MODERN podiobooks, often produced by the author).

Now I get near the end of my long post. You claim many people do no explore reading and that it is a shame that people use audiobooks. I purpose it is simply an evolutionary step. As I mentioned above about the oral tradition of story-telling. While it is not gone, is severely diminished, hampered by a newer, more inclusive, more convenient invention, writing, which you have basically heralded as the be all end all of information. Now a newer, more inclusive, more convenient invention has come along again, but you seem to call this one the destroyer of education. It is natural to resist changes. I am certain that many typists were furious at the advent of the word processor, claiming it reduced the skills needed to type since one could correct the mistakes made while typing, but without the word processor we would not be on this forum having this very discussion. My point is, if change is bad, then the change to the written system of telling stories surely was harmful too and we should go back to a more oral tradition, like recorded audio stories. If change is not bad, then perhaps this IS just another step forward that will not cause the downfall of society as you seem to suggest it will.

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