Mr. Gadget and McGiver could rule the world. They totally epitomize the spirit of making things from nothing that do great things. So today's topic is on Reading in the Information age.

I love to read. And today is the very best time ever to be a reader. Think about how many books, articles, news reports, and blogs exist. It's a readers paradise. But, sometimes you cannot sit still and read. Audiobooks tend to cost more than tree-ware as well. So, invoking the spirits of Mr. Gadget and McGiver, it's time to fix things.

Two times a week I drive about six hundred miles round trip. That will cramp your reading style. So here is what I do. I take articles and books and convert them to audiobooks. Imagine combining the Internet and the Public Library. If it's out there it is likely free. I know folks are making money on the big ticket stuff. But it's the little things we are going after here.

I will teach you to make audiobooks.

What You Need
Recording Software listed in the article body.

An online article or eBook

IF your book is a pdf file, then the process is easy.

First download mp3mymp3 and install it.

Open the program and make sure the source is "stereo mix".

Click setting and make sure you change the max recording length to 999 minutes.Then, open your pdf and select view > activate read out loud. Now go back and select "read to end of document".

Click record on mymp3.

I am still playing with it. I think that if the PDF isn't the active window something goes wrong. But, I do have a three hour mp3 of a 200 page pdf. The voice quality is better than the computer voice on Star Trek (Original Series), but not quite natural. For free, I can get used to it.

The next free program is SayPad. All you have to do is paste your text into it and it will create MP3's from it. Again, the voice isn't anyone likely to be famous, but it is free and easy to use.

Tips & Warnings

  • It's best to do this before you go to bed so you won't change the active window.
  • In SayPad it is best to put your text into notepad first and edit out repetitive headers.
  • Both websites offer excellently detailed instructions.