Mobileread
Best eReader/solutions for backing up/syncing Annotations
#1  frailtyy 01-14-2021, 10:02 AM
Currently, I'm using a Kindle Paperwhite and just using the Annotations plugin to copy annotations into Calibre. The Kindle's been acting a bit finicky with some occasional book crashes, sluggishness while managing things although it's generally gotten the job done.

I'm curious if there are any other recommendations out there for eReaders to replace this or better workflows/software solutions to back up annotations from books. In general, I'd like to have the ability to search through my annotations across multiple books when on my computer while also easily syncing these annotations from my eReader.

This might be best handled by upgrading to a device that's a bit more hackable (Kobo Libra or Boox Nova) and using some other software solution to pull the content although I'd also need to figure out the best software for this. Bonus points if it backs up to Calibre as well.

This seems like a tall order although this is likely the best group of people to ask and I work with a fair chunk of annotations across research projects. Worst case scenario, I'll just carry on as I am and reset the Kindle to hopefully kick it back into shape.

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#2  Quoth 01-15-2021, 10:07 AM
Kobo with Kobo Utilities on Calibre. Far better than Kindle. I used the original H2O instead of a PaperWhite, then got a Kobo Libra.

No need to hack, though you can add a line in the config file so that the context menu for a book icon adds an export bookmarks/highlights/annotations to text. I tested it and it's far better than Kindle myclippings.txt, but the Kobo Utilities is fastest. I copy/paste it to a text editor, reformat to suit my edit workflow and open the source WP file beside it.

I make epub2 using docx input to Calibre (or Gutenberg). Dozens of revisions of about about 45 books on the Libra, would cost a fortune in paper and toner.
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#3  frailtyy 01-16-2021, 04:58 AM
Quote Quoth
Kobo with Kobo Utilities on Calibre. Far better than Kindle. I used the original H2O instead of a PaperWhite, then got a Kobo Libra.

No need to hack, though you can add a line in the config file so that the context menu for a book icon adds an export bookmarks/highlights/annotations to text. I tested it and it's far better than Kindle myclippings.txt, but the Kobo Utilities is fastest. I copy/paste it to a text editor, reformat to suit my edit workflow and open the source WP file beside it.

I make epub2 using docx input to Calibre (or Gutenberg). Dozens of revisions of about about 45 books on the Libra, would cost a fortune in paper and toner.
This sounds compelling. I'm going to need to dig around a bit in what the Kobo Utilities offers to be sure it's in line with what I'm looking for, although it does sound compelling.
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#4  davidfor 01-16-2021, 05:50 AM
Support for exporting annotations in readers is terrible. None of the companies really support it. And how good what is out there is depends on what you want to do with the exported annotations.

The Kobo devices possibly have the best support because of the Annotations plugin and Kobo Utilities (both my plugins, but I inherited the former from someone else). Which is better depends on what you want to do. I believe that @Quoth prefers the Kobo Utilities because he uses the annotations for proofreading books. Once he has fixed the source, he discards the annotations. If you are keeping the annotations as favourite quotes or something like that, the Annotations plugin might be better as it adds the annotations to the calibre library. There are several other ways to get the annotations from Kobo devices that are discussed in the Kobo forum.

Kindles are probably the next best as there are several ways to parse the "My Clippings.txt" file. Including the Annotations plugin. And I think Amazon has a page to display the annotations for books in their cloud. Kindles save the annotations somewhere better than the "My Clippings.txt", but, I haven't seen mention of a tool that reads this.

The other devices I now anything about are the tolino and Sony's. The tolino is similar to the Kindle. The "notes.txt" has the annotations without real location info. They must also be stored elsewhere, but, this is not accessible. Sony's are no longer available, but I recently added support for them to the Annotations plugin. This was based on someone else's work, but, I haven't heard if it works.

The Annotations plugin supports getting annotations from Kobo, Kindle, tolino and (hopefully) Sony ereaders. Plus the Goodreader app. Support for other devices or apps can be added.
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#5  Quoth 01-16-2021, 11:00 AM
Quote davidfor
Support for exporting annotations in readers is terrible. None of the companies really support it. And how good what is out there is depends on what you want to do with the exported annotations.

The Kobo devices possibly have the best support because of the Annotations plugin and Kobo Utilities (both my plugins, but I inherited the former from someone else). Which is better depends on what you want to do. I believe that @Quoth prefers the Kobo Utilities because he uses the annotations for proofreading books. Once he has fixed the source, he discards the annotations. If you are keeping the annotations as favourite quotes or something like that, the Annotations plugin might be better as it adds the annotations to the calibre library. There are several other ways to get the annotations from Kobo devices that are discussed in the Kobo forum..
I do actually keep the exported text files forever and back them up immediately. With the Kobo Utilities (thanks David), you'd need to paste into Calibre metadata, either the original, or your own version. I do sometimes do that with notes relating to books I'm not proofing. I find it faster than the Annotations Plugin.
Indeed if you only want the Notes in Calibre and want to import notes, highlights and bookmarks of more than one book at the same time, the Annotations Plugin may be better. It also works for Kindles, though Kobo gives a better result. I used a DXG and a PW3 alternately for sometime on Calibre before getting the original Aura H2O and then Libra.

I've been using Calibre since my main computers both had XP. Changed over to Linux completely in Dec 2016, though I was familiar with it having given courses and installed servers in 1998 and having used various UNIX type systems since 1985 approximately.
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#6  Quoth 01-16-2021, 11:06 AM
I could only use the ancient Sony Windows client to get annotations of my PRS350. Perhaps the later Android based Sony ereaders are supported? They didn't last long and the T1 seemed buggy. I took it back.
I think Sony has now dropped their digital paper? Sort of dedicated PDF devices without ebook formats and no mass storage mode, so you could only manage it with their application on Mac and Windows.

Then there are things like Likebook etc. Unless you want bigger than 7" the Libra is good value and doesn't need any added apps or hacking to do what it's sold for.
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#7  j.p.s 01-16-2021, 12:29 PM
Quote davidfor
Kindles save the annotations somewhere better than the "My Clippings.txt",
The .azw3r file in the .sdr folder for azw3 (KF8) books.

There are similar files for mobi (KF7), KFX, and othe kindle formats.

Quote
but I haven't seen mention of a tool that reads this.
KRDS
https://www.mobileread.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=322172

azw3r highlight and note extraction
https://www.mobileread.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=321811
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