Note to readers

This is a blog that I'm required to keep that's full of unedited, near stream-of-consciousness reactions to similarly required and related readings in a graduate course in N.C. State University's Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media program. The way these posts are written help me interrogate and understand what's going on in our readings. I'm identifying what's troublesome so that I can give it more thought, but the posts aren't written in a style that's productive for audiences outside of our class to read. That's by design. I start with contestation, then spend heavens only knows how long researching, recutting, and reevaluating so that I can try and see what potentially productive readings I can extract from these source for use in my own work's contributions back to the field. Comments encouraged, but please, you'll likely need a thick skin if your work is quoted here.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

How do you cite a Kindle in MLA?

The Kindle doesn't give page numbers, but it does give "location" which is, ultimately, a more precise means of locating a quote. I believe one should give a location in a numerator and a "page divisor" in a quote, which would get you very close. How do determine your divisor? Funny you should ask...

EduKindle � Page Number Versus Position on Kindle:

This is a much bruited topic and one that creates a little bit of anxiety for us bibliophiles who have made the conversion to the Kindle. How can I tell what page I am on??? I mean, I have only spent my whole life using page numbers as the reference point for a) how far along in the book I am, and b) any references to the text that I want to make in a post, article, or other scholarly writing.
I got closest to a useful formula when I took the first actual numbered page of the book (not including the introduction)–that is, a page with “1″ on it, and looked up the corresponding “position” on my Kindle. As it turns out, Page 1 appears at position “95″ on the Kindle. Then, I went to the last full page of the text, page 239 (not the notes, index, or other “last” page) and checked the position: 4035. So, I had 3940 positions spread over 236 pages (the first page of text was actually page 3). 3940 divided by 236 yields 16.69 positions per page.

Using this formula I could pretty much find the page in book if I knew the position. In all my test cases, I landed within one page of the text I was searching for if I divided the position number by 16.69.

Others have said to include which chapter, but there's no real reason not to be more specific rather than less. How to get the MLA's blessing, I don't know, even if I am a member.

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