Thursday, April 8, 2010

My First Audiobook Experience

Okay, so no more smart phone at work (which I don’t have), or using the company computer (which I hardly do). So what to do, what to do when not a creature is stirring not even a mouse in the middle of the night? Please don’t tell me that reading is not allowed either, or in this case listening to audio books.
 During my short stay on this earth, I have never listened to audiobooks which I’m sure was invented ever since the dawn of recorded media, from vinyl records, 8-track tapes, cassettes, CD, DVD, and now MP3 players. I was an audiobook virgin until this week. There are a lot of websites that you can download public domain audiobooks for free and this is the particular site I went to: . So I decided to give it a try. The first book I downloaded was The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. I was always a fan of Sherlock Holmes stories. During my freshman year in college in Manila, I bought a lot of those paperbacks and read them more than I did my textbooks. That, and playing too much tennis. Oh my, the history of my poor study habits at the time L.
                I copied the files to my cell phone and while patrolling the hallways while doing my 15 minute rounds, I listened to the stories. I made sure I only inserted the earphone in one ear so I can still monitor for other sounds. The narration was pretty clear but I encountered a problem with the controls of the cell phone. The buttons were so sensitive that I would inadvertently stop or pause the story and because the menu navigation was not intuitive, I had to search for the story again, start at the beginning, then fast forward it to the spot I was previously listening. To say the least, it was a bit frustrating.
The next day, I copied the files to my dedicated MP3 player and assigned a playlist for the audiobooks. This method worked better except when I paused a story too long, the device turns itself off automatically to save battery life. Then I would have to fast forward the story again. But, it was a better experience than the cell phone.
I’m sure when I become more used to it and listen to these books on tape more often, I’ll figure out how to navigate my rarely used MP3 player. I’ll be getting more low intensity exercise too, by walking up and down the hallway frequently. So this becomes another case of multitasking: doing my job, getting some exercise, and learning more literature.

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