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Kindle: Is This the Future of Reading?

January 10th, 2008
Marketing Advertising Blog — VuManhThang.Com

I recently acquired a Kindle, from Amazon. Here is a pretty good summary article from Wikipedia. I’ve been having a lot of fun learning how to use it and loading books into it. I’m unsure yet what precisely it means, but I can not help shake the feeling that this portends the future of how we will receive, and use, digital information going forward into the future. Will books ever go away? No. After over 500 years, they are going as strongly as ever. They are the ultimate portable document device. Let’s think of the advantages of books:

Supremely portable
Simple user interface
Ease of use
Can be used anywhere there is light
Require no power source
Never need recharging
Offer a satisfying tactile look and feel
Instantly on
Never need an upgrade
No risk of breakdown (unless mistreated)

What about a Kindle? It allows me to have with me, wherever I want to take it, a large collection of reading material. With a secure digital card I can carry around over eight gigabytes of intellectual property: music, photos, books, magazines, newspapers, blog sites, and the Kindle has its own functional browser, and offers you the ability to access Wikipedia at any time. Talk about your ultimate walking encyclopedia!

Ironically, one of the first books I downloaded, which I read about on the Kindle, was Isaac Asimov’s Foundation, the premise of which is that a bunch of eggheads are determined to preserve their civilization’s knowledge in the Galactic Encyclopedia.

The sensation of reading on the Kindle is very pleasing. There is no screen glare. It is truly like reading a paperback book. The massive infrastructure that Amazon has developed to support the Kindle is the most amazing feature of the Kindle. You can put any document you want on it. Just as long as you have it in one of several common formats, you can send it to Amazon, they convert it into Kindle’s format and they will either e-mail it to you for you to download on to the Kindle yourself, or for ten cents, you receive it over the Kindle’s wireless Internet connection; which, by the way, works much better than my WiFi at home from ATT and my Sprint cell phone; just now, for example, I uploaded a 6.6 megabyte collection of a German theologians letters to pastors (all of them), and within ten minutes it was sent back down to my Kindle and I can enjoy them there.

There is much to think about here and I’m enjoying both the thinking and Kindle reading! Does any reader of this blog have a Kindle? What do you think?

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Categories: Books
  1. January 11th, 2008 at 04:02 | #1

    Huh? I have not heard of this stuff, another geek thing eyh?
    What does it load pdf docs or its own format?

  2. Matthew J. Surburg
    January 11th, 2008 at 06:11 | #2

    I have seen these touted on Amazon, and I had my doubts. All told, is it worth the $400 price tag? Any chance Amazon will pull an iPhone and punish the early adopters by dropping the price soon after it is introduced?

  3. fr john w fenton
    January 11th, 2008 at 08:33 | #3

    I’m intrigued by the promo you’ve given. I have two questions, if you don’t mind:
    How is Kindle better than a PDA?
    Can Kindle read Palm, MS Reader and other electronic formats?

  4. January 11th, 2008 at 10:36 | #4

    So you like the Kindle huh? I’ve been seriously thinking about getting one, but I’d like to actually see one in person first. Is Amazon the only way to purchase them? Are they available at any stores?

  5. January 11th, 2008 at 13:06 | #5

    LPC: If you go to the Amazon site, or Wikipedia site, you’ll find answers to your questions.
    Matthew: It would be worth the $400 if you really are committed to doing a lot of reading and want to have with you a lot of books. I have no information on pricing reductions.
    John: Better than a PDA? Much more legible and readable text. Please refer to Amazon and Wikipedia sites for the technical details.
    Scott: Only available from Amazon, which has a video, etc. Not available from any store that I know of.

  6. January 11th, 2008 at 15:43 | #6

    Will CPH books be made in Kindle format? There’s something on the Amazon website for publishers to use…
    McCain answer: Probably not for a while. We will wait to see how well adopted the Kindle is.

  7. Rev. Benjamin Mayes
    January 12th, 2008 at 06:26 | #7

    The Kindle seems rather large. How does the reading experience compare to an iPod Touch?
    I still prefer B.O.O.K. format (Browsable Opaque Optical Knowledge). With this technology, data streams directly from the page into your brain. Navigate through the BOOK with a flick of the finger. Many units come with extensive indexing built right in. Bookmarks and highlighting are all supported!

  8. Gerry
    January 12th, 2008 at 09:59 | #8

    I researched the Kindle and would love to have one but the $400 price tag is much too steep in my opinion. Especially since it is basically a tool that Amazon will use to sell me more stuff. Maybe they’re trying to get their development costs back or something but they’re going to have to drop the price to get the average consumer such as myself to buy. I predict that by next Christmas they’ll be half the price.

  9. January 12th, 2008 at 13:15 | #9

    I’ve blogged more about the Kindle than people probably want to read:
    The short version: Good idea, but poorly executed. Quite poorly, in fact. And until they can make a device like this have native PDF support (I can’t BELIEVE that’s not available), stop charging for blog content, and cut the price in half, I’m not interested.
    The second link about is to an article where I make actual constructive suggestions. I’m actually reasonably sure Apple will come along with something Kindle-esque quite soon (next week at Macworld?) that will blow the Kindle out of the water.

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