All technology invented before I hit 30 is awesome and wonderful and the natural way things should be. All technology invented after I hit 30 is terrible and leading to the downfall of civilization. (Add examples to fill word count.)
According to Huffington Post, after the iPad launch Walter Mossberg cornered Steve Jobs to ask a pertinent question: Mossberg asks why users would want to shell out $14.99 for an ebook on the iPad, when they can buy ebooks for Amazon’s Kindle for $9.99. Steve Jobs’ retort: ‘Well, that won’t be the case.’ Mossberg presses him on whether that means Apple’s prices will go down, or Amazon’s will go up, to which Jobs offers a cryptic, non-committal, ‘The prices will be the same.
Another day, another round of bad media coverage for the Amazon Kindle. The story as originally reported: Publisher changes mind about having an e-book edition of George Orwell’s books. Amazon remotely deletes them and refunds the purchase price. What actually happened: A third party illegally published editions of George Orwell’s books, which they did not have the right to publish. Amazon remotely deleted those illegal copies and refunded the purchase price.
My initial thoughts about the Kindle DX: The price seems surprisingly reasonable. The iRex with an A4 size screen was over $800. I’m not convinced that textbooks are workable on an e-book reader. You don’t read textbooks linearly. (Or at least, I never did.) The ability to flip around between marked locations is limited on the Kindle 2, and I’m guessing it will be on the DX as well. On the other hand, the size and weight benefits are hard to deny.
As the promised followup to my review of the Kindle 2, I’m going to go through some of the common objections to the Kindle that I see reposted every time it gets mentioned. I have no financial stake in Amazon’s success; it just annoys me to see the same misconceptions crop up time and time again.
If you’re a Douglas Adams fan, Robert Sheckley is probably a good bet. He wrote mostly SF with a satirical comedy bent, and was widely acclaimed for it. I’ve found a few of his novels disappointing–“Options“, for example, seems to fall apart part-way through and meander around. “The Status Civilization“, though, is excellent. It does have a few visible seams from its original publication in magazine serial form, but they don’t detract too much from the story.
I will allow myself to buy an Amazon Kindle. But first, I must read all the books on my “books to read” shelf. Except “Infinite Jest”, the size of which makes it a prime candidate for e-book reading.
Dear Amazon, You’re so almost there with your new Kindle e-book. There are just a few minor details you need to fix to get me on board. First of all, you need Mac support, and preferably Linux support as well, both for content creation and for reading books. There’s really no excuse for not having reader support, as you have a working Mobipocket reader in Java that will run on Mac and Linux, you just haven’t taken the time to package it up properly.