Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 12-03-2007, 10:20 AM   #21
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Coach's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Colorado, USA
Posts: 1,127
I've had a Kindle for a few days now. Here are my impressions so far:

It's a very nice ebook reader. The black and white "electronic ink" display is very easy on the eyes and works fine in any light conditions I'd be comfortable reading a real book in. You can adjust text size up and down. It's lightweight and feels solid to me. It takes a while to figure out out to pick it up without hitting some button. It's easy to look up a word from your reading in the supplied dictionary, Wikipedia, or on the web. It's really easy to buy books from Amazon -- pick the book, and it's on your Kindle within a couple of minutes. I've paid between 9.99 for Steve Martin's new autobiography and 1.19 for Mark Twain's Innocents Abroad. Availability varies -- for example, there's nothing by John Steinbeck or John Grisham, lots by Agatha Christie, lots of bestsellers. You can have hundreds of books on it at a time -- thousands, if you add a memory card. Everything you buy is saved on the Amazon site, so you can delete it from your Kindle and redownload it later if you want.

It's easy to load other stuff onto the Kindle -- connect it via its USB port to your PC and it looks like a flash drive. You can just copy stuff down in several supported formats. You can also email books or other documents to it for a dime each.

It's not a very good web browser. I was looking forward to this function, but doubt if I'll use it much. For straightfoward text-heavy sites it does OK. For interactive sites it's between miserable and unuseable. I gave up trying to do email on it. Web browsing is an experimental feature and currently free, but Amazon can decide to start charging for it at any time.

You can subscribe to newspapers, magazines and blogs, which are then automatically downloaded. I haven't tried this feature yet.

The most interesting thing about it so far to me is that anyone can sell their own work on Amazon for downloading to kindles. Wrote a book that never got published? It looks like you can have it available on Amazon in short order. And make money, too. http://amanzon.com/dtp

The Kindle does a great job as a book reader. The farther from that function you go, the less well it does.

Coach
__________________

__________________
Coach is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 12-03-2007, 10:33 AM   #22
Moderator Emeritus
Rich_by_the_Bay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 8,827
Thanks, Coach - I was hoping someone would share their real-world experience with that. It sounds like iTunes for books. It it becomes a good browser, that could make it much more interesting.

How large is the drive when you connect via USB to your computer?
__________________

__________________
Rich
San Francisco Area
ESR'd March 2010. FIRE'd January 2011.

As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
Rich_by_the_Bay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2007, 01:11 PM   #23
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
TromboneAl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 11,196
Quote:
I did not know a gadget like this came out!
Me neither, and I've always been interested in eBooks. Did they do a bad job of marketing, or did they not try? Compared with the iPhone, this product was a dark secret.
__________________
Al
TromboneAl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2007, 01:16 PM   #24
Moderator Emeritus
Nords's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Oahu
Posts: 26,616
Coach, if you don't mind I have a bunch of specific questions:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach View Post
The black and white "electronic ink" display is very easy on the eyes and works fine in any light conditions I'd be comfortable reading a real book in. You can adjust text size up and down.
Are you presbyopic or at least in your late 40s? When I turned 42, suddenly I needed a lot of light/dark contrast to be able to pick out text-- especially pocket paperbacks & prescription medications. Is the electronic ink's contrast enough for you, or do you need to make the text bigger?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach View Post
It's easy to load other stuff onto the Kindle -- connect it via its USB port to your PC and it looks like a flash drive. You can just copy stuff down in several supported formats. You can also email books or other documents to it for a dime each.
So, David Weber's 10th "Honor Harrington" book came with a free CD of all 10 books, which I copied to my hard drive. It sounds like I'd be able to download it to the Kindle and try it out, right?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach View Post
You can subscribe to newspapers, magazines and blogs, which are then automatically downloaded. I haven't tried this feature yet.
Can you tell if this is an RSS feed (blogs) or a big PDF file (newspapers, magazines)?

How do you make "margin notes" or other annotations? Drawing on the surface like a PDA, or using a virtual keyboard?

I just about had my heart broken by the hype around Sony's eReader, but maybe I'm ready to try again. Sounds like it's gonna be a verry Merry Christmas around Hale Nords...
__________________
*
*

The book written on E-R.org, "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement", on sale now! For more info see "About Me" in my profile.
I don't spend much time here anymore, so please send me a PM. Thanks.
Nords is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2007, 03:35 PM   #25
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Gotadimple's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 1,760
Here's the latest review of Kindle from the Seattle Times:

Search Results | Seattle Times Newspaper

-- Rita
__________________
Only got A dimple, would have preferred 2!
Gotadimple is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2007, 07:32 PM   #26
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Coach's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Colorado, USA
Posts: 1,127
Rich, it shows 182MB connected as a USB drive. The books I have on it range from .5MB to 2.3MB each. You can also add a SD memory card, for up to another GB.

Nords, I'll do the best I can on answers. I'm 56 with a touch of presbyopia, though I do most of my reading without glasses. The contract seems fine to me. I'm doing most of my reading at the default font size. The display works on reflected light so it really seems like paper. Like reading a paper book, I like having decent reading light. The more ambient light, the better. I spent several hours stretched out on the couch reading this weekend, without eye strain.

On copying the books off the CD, it depends on the format they're in. Support for PDFs is "experimental". It's probably not very good with PDFs since they're so page oriented. .txt files and "unprotected" mobipocket files can be copied right over. .DOC and .HTML files can be converted into Amazon's format and loaded. .txt files with returns at the end of every line can look pretty bad.

On the magazines and blogs, I can't tell you for sure since I haven't subscribed, but my guess is that they come as Amazon's own .AZW format, like books from Amazon. .AZW is apparently a lot like the mobipocket format.

Notes and annotations are made by using the thumb keyboard at the bottom, and show up as an icon at the end of a line that you can expand. Typing is painful -- you won't want to write much. You can also highlight text, which puts a box around it on the display, or bookmark, which dog-ears the page on the display. You can jump to a bookmark; they're labelled with the first line of the text they are associated with.

This could be another heartbreaker. My reaction is that it's a great way to read a book. It's not very competent at much else.

Coach
__________________
Coach is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2007, 08:30 PM   #27
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
cute fuzzy bunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Losing my whump
Posts: 22,697
Too bad they didnt do color in it and come up with a fungible web access suite for it. It sure would have fit the niche where a handheld is too small but a laptop is too much to drag around.

Given they pretty much ran out of the things almost immediately with practically no advertising or marketing beyond the amazon main page, perhaps they got all the marketing in that they could handle given production abilities on the supply side...
__________________
Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
cute fuzzy bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2007, 08:38 PM   #28
Moderator Emeritus
Rich_by_the_Bay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 8,827
Quote:
Originally Posted by cute fuzzy bunny View Post
Too bad they didnt do color in it and come up with a fungible web access suite for it. It sure would have fit the niche where a handheld is too small but a laptop is too much to drag around.

Given they pretty much ran out of the things almost immediately with practically no advertising or marketing beyond the amazon main page, perhaps they got all the marketing in that they could handle given production abilities on the supply side...
Did a little research on this puppy this evening. The lack of color is in the e-paper technology, though its grayscale is apparently excellent. Interesting how the existing technologies are converging in several different ways: the all-in-one ubergadget (e.g. the tiny, thin laptops) are fading other than in niches. The music based iPod like gadget is merging with phones, though data management is limited to contact applications. The Kindle makes reading its focus, but with its browser, audio out, possible mass storage and always-ready wireless it could morph a lot. This one will be fun to watch.

I think the Kindle concept is a winner. I'll give it a couple generations and price drops, but will probably get one down the road. I love the idea of a portable thing with one or two of my current favorite reads, my weekly news magazine, and maybe the WSJ daily. Images can't be far behind.
__________________
Rich
San Francisco Area
ESR'd March 2010. FIRE'd January 2011.

As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
Rich_by_the_Bay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2007, 08:52 PM   #29
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
cute fuzzy bunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Losing my whump
Posts: 22,697
I agree...version 2 or 2.5 or 3 will be a pretty interesting product.

I did however hear that the grayscale on photos was pretty lousy. Otherwise I'd have replaced the PocketPC my wife carts around full of baby pictures and videos with one of these..
__________________
Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
cute fuzzy bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2007, 09:12 PM   #30
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
twaddle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 1,378
I don't know about you guys, but I have never had trouble throwing one of those inexpensive old-fashioned paper books into my backpack when I travel.

Variations of these things have been around since the late 1980's and they have *never* gained any traction. Hard to compete with paper in terms of robustness, ease of use, and low cost....
__________________
twaddle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2007, 11:38 PM   #31
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Goonie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: North-Central Illinois
Posts: 3,198
Quote:
Originally Posted by cute fuzzy bunny View Post
Too bad they didnt do color in it and come up with a fungible web access suite for it. It sure would have fit the niche where a handheld is too small but a laptop is too much to drag around.
After searching & researching for quite a while, last week I ordered an ASUS Eee PC from Amazon. Though the Eee isn't specifically designed for eBooks, it does have FBReader, which is an eBook reader. It fits that niche between the handheld and the laptop. It's only 9"w x 6.5"d x 1.4"h, and weighs a paltry 2 pounds. It's about the size of a hardback book. It has most of the capabilities of a normal laptop, along with many of the normal type programs.

If your not looking specifically for an eBook reader, the ASUS Eee PC might be something for you to check out. Cost is $399, and like the Kindle, is currently out of stock at Amazon. The customer reviews on Amazon rate it as very good. Mine is supposed to ship shortly after Christmas.

It's NOT a desktop replacement, or even a laptop replacement if your a heavy user. But for day to day odds and ends, like web surfing, email, and writing occasional letters and/or spreadsheets and that sort of thing, it's great. Especially handy for travelers and others that just want a small, light, easy to use & carry PC. The loaded OS is Xandros Linux, that starts in "Easy Mode", but can also be run in Xandros' normal, Windows-style KDE desktop, which works pretty much like WindowsXP. Also, it is supposed to be available with WindowXP at some point in the near future, or you can dump Xandros and load WindowsXP by following ASUS' instructions.

So Kindle might be a good choice for some, and this ASUS Eee might be good for others. Both are worth checking into.
__________________
Goonie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2007, 08:56 AM   #32
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Rustic23's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Lake Livingston, Tx
Posts: 3,624
Decent review in the Houston Chronicle today, however, like most folks the reviewer was put off by the $400 price and will wait.

I think the place these will really go is in the text book market. I would think most students would love to carry all there text books in one of these. Ability to search, highlight, dictionary and such are added bonus. I could see Universities getting into the Epublishing business. Not sure how the used book business would work and students will miss selling back text their parents payed for.
__________________
Rustic23 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2007, 11:46 AM   #33
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
bright eyed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 1,891
hmm - it is bulky and ugly! for $400 i want to "look" high tech!

i still like paper - it seems easier on my eyes - especially since I am on a computer all day, i like the break...and i can't read more than one book in a trip anyhow...
__________________
If i think of something clever to say, i'll put it here...
bright eyed is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2008, 05:52 PM   #34
Moderator Emeritus
CuppaJoe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: At The Cafe
Posts: 6,866
Quote:
Originally Posted by saluki9 View Post
Well, I can tell you this. Whoever was in charge of cosmetic design should be dragged out into the street and shot. It looks like it was built by Tandy in 1985
I ordered a Kindle as soon as I figured out exactly what it is, it took me 45 minutes. Oh, Tandy in '85, that's OK by me as I peaked that year! If you look at the five-star reviews at the Amazon site and multiply by four, you have my attitude. Mine arrived Dec. 18: SO and my cat became very jealous but the cat recovered, she must assume now that it is an extension of my hand. The browser is great for me as I have no other personal internet connection--this is my first proto-type device and it's been a lot of fun so far, its more pleasant than reading on a computer monitor. The photos in books look fine by my standards, the highlighting function is terrific, I read the local newspaper over the internet, and once I get used to it, it should work great as a reference library.

I've done more reading on it than ever before; RE forums is easy to read on it. Considering that a recent poll revealed that RE forum folks wouldn't go cheap on a broadband connection, you folks may not be the target buyers. I've never used a wireless connection before but it works very well (in the city). (I don't work for Amazon).

Cuppa
__________________
CuppaJoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2008, 08:40 PM   #35
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
clifp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 7,450
I am waiting for Microsoft to introduce Bonfire for $299 and Apple to introduce iPaper at $199. Still I may break down and purchase before my next long trip. I normally take 3 or 4 books One for the flight to the destination, one for at night, one for flight back, and one as back up incase the other 3 are bad.
__________________
clifp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2008, 10:22 AM   #36
Moderator Emeritus
Nords's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Oahu
Posts: 26,616
Quote:
Originally Posted by clifp View Post
I am waiting for Microsoft to introduce Bonfire...
"Bonfire"? Microsoft thinks that a replacement for paper media should be called "Bonfire"?!?

Why don't they just call it "Fahrenheit 451" or "Bonfire of the Vanities" or "Kick Me, Please"?!?

I can just see all the product-placement sitcoms now: "Honey, have you seen my Bonfire?" or "Dude, check out this Bonfire! [special effects fireball]" or "No, baby, it's just a Bonfire but I am happy to see you!"

Well, I guess they're trying to generate a buzz. They may succeed beyond their wildest dreams.

Of course this may be all that can be expected from the corporate culture which led to a brainstorming session years ago when someone piped up to say "I know, we can call it 'Bob'! That's a cool, friendly, non-threatening name, right? Hey, we could even make it a smiley face!!"
__________________
*
*

The book written on E-R.org, "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement", on sale now! For more info see "About Me" in my profile.
I don't spend much time here anymore, so please send me a PM. Thanks.
Nords is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2008, 10:33 AM   #37
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
cute fuzzy bunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Losing my whump
Posts: 22,697
I think he was just kidding.

Besides, the apple product would be $799, not $199, and you could only read books on it that were about unfounded smugness.
__________________
Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
cute fuzzy bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2008, 11:06 AM   #38
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
TromboneAl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 11,196
Quote:
"Bonfire"? Microsoft thinks that a replacement for paper media should be called "Bonfire"?!?
Better than GM's "Impact."
__________________
Al
TromboneAl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2008, 11:09 AM   #39
Moderator Emeritus
Rich_by_the_Bay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 8,827
Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
Better than GM's "Impact."
... or their introduction in Latin America of the Chevy Nova, the latter meaning loosely in Spanish "doesn't go" or "doesn't work."
__________________
Rich
San Francisco Area
ESR'd March 2010. FIRE'd January 2011.

As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
Rich_by_the_Bay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2008, 11:12 AM   #40
Moderator Emeritus
CuppaJoe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: At The Cafe
Posts: 6,866
I'm trying to limit my use of the expression, "I'm Kindling."
__________________

__________________
CuppaJoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Get that "Free Shipping" from Amazon UncleHoney Other topics 8 10-26-2007 10:42 AM
Anyone try Amazon.com Grocery? ERD50 FIRE and Money 16 05-16-2007 08:39 AM
Very frustrated with Amazon.com modhatter Other topics 6 09-25-2006 10:15 PM
Amazon.com cube_rat Other topics 7 01-18-2006 08:07 AM
Amazon, yahoo, google threaten ebays business cute fuzzy bunny Other topics 0 06-22-2005 06:01 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:09 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.