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At lunch today I spent some time getting research resources ready for a reading binge if time presents itself over the weekend. (One can hope.) Here’s a couple of really quick tips in case you have been in the same boat as me:

Tip1: I have found several ebooks on Project Gutenberg and The Google Books that I wanted to add to my library for later perusing.

Oddly, some books on Google cannot be added to your online library – some are only downloadable as an eBook. Between those books and ones from Gutenberg, I thought it would be nice to add them to the Kindle app on my iPad.

However, Kindle has a particular list of file formats it will accept:

  • Kindle books: .AZW, .AZW1, .AZW3
  • Text (.TXT)
  • Unprotected Mobipocket: .MOBI, .PRC
  • Audible: .AA, .AAX
  • Music: .MP3

I, unfortunately had various books in .epub and .lit formats. What to do? Simple – convert them using this tool at

In addition to the ability to convert the various eBook filetypes to any other one, there are also audio, video, image, and other conversion tools available as well.

Tip 2: These days, I try to avoid the tethered sync when at all possible. Did you know that if you have the Kindle app installed and tied to your Amazon account, that you have a supersecret email address you can use to send documents, books, and images directly to your device?

Simply login to your Amazon account, go to Manage Your Kindle then select Manage your Devices in the left hand menu. At the top of the page under your Registered Kindle Reading Apps you should see a “Send-to-Kindle E-mail Address” section.

Note that down – or better yet add it to your email account’s address book (mine is in there as “John’s Kindle”). Then you can easily attach a file to an email and send it to your Kindle address. Before you can, though, you’ll also need to do one more important thing: Once again in Manage Your Kindle, click the “Personal Documents Settings” link in the left menu. You will see there is a section called “Approved Personal Document E-mail List”.

That list is your friend – add your own email address there and only the ones you add can send things to your device. That shall save you from getting spam to yet another location from nefarious ne’er dogooders and such.

Bonus Tip: You can even add certain friends, family, and research cohorts so they can send you stuff too. Or get Mom’s supersecret Kindle email so you can send photos of your kidlets directly to her device!

One Last Un-Tip: Notice how in the Kindle supported filetypes I listed above it says “.AZ3” (an Amazon native filetype!) is supported. DON’T YOU BELIEVE IT. Well, maybe it is in some fashion, but I found that if I send .AZ3 files to my Kindle using my supersecret email address, Amazon chokes on it and sends me an apologetic message. I have found that the .mobi format seems to be the best way to send files via email.

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