A Philosopher's Blog


Posted in Technology by Michael LaBossiere on July 31, 2011
Cover of "Kindle Wireless Reading Device,...

Cover via Amazon

Although I have had my Kindle for a while, my recent trip to Maine afforded me the chance to spend an entire week ereading. When I first got my Kindle, it was a bit odd and I was not sure that my money had been well spent. After all, for the price of the Kindle I could have purchased a box or two of used books. However, I have found that the Kindle really shines (metaphorically, of course-the screen is not lit) as a book substitute.

I found, like many others, that regular use of the Kindle makes the actual device recede into the mental background, allowing me to simply read it like a book. That is, of course, the most important “features” of an ereader is that the reader ceases to realize that he is reading on an ereader and simply reads. I also own a rooted Nook and an iPod Touch, both of which provide ereader functions (the Nook, obviously, is supposed to be an ereader) in addition to providing supports for wide range of apps. My preference for the Kindle over the iPod as an ereader is easily explained: the Kindle has a larger screen and a vastly better battery life. While it might seem odd, I actually prefer the one trick pony Kindle to the multifunction Nook. I have found that the Kindle’s screen “reads like paper” while the Nook makes me feel the same way I do when reading on a PC-it just doesn’t feel quite right. Also, the Nook has a high distraction factor: I can easily check my email, surf the web, play games and so on. When I simply want to read, these distractions are actually a minus.  There is, of course, an obvious downside to the Kindle: when I travel, I need to bring other devices to provide email, web and document access. With my Nook or some other tablet, I could have all these functions in one device.

Not surprisingly, I am following the rumors about the (allegedly) upcoming Amazon android tablets. One appealing rumor is that it will have two screens (or one screen with two “modes”): one that is like the current Kindles  (for reading0 and another that is a color screen. That, if done well, could provide the best of both worlds. Then again, perhaps a single screen would be just fine. There are also rumors that Amazon will release a Kindle 4, most likely a touch version of the Kindle aimed at Barnes and Nobles touch ereader. Since I have a Kindle 2, I might be tempted by a touch Kindle 4-by then, the battery in my current Kindle might be worn out. Then again, an Amazon android tablet might become my ereader of choice. Of course, the tablet market is in a frenzy now, so who knows for sure what needless luxuries the future shall bring us?

Of course, I still like actual books and magazines: until they make a waterproof Kindle, I’m not taking it near water. Also, there is still that time on flights when all electronics must (for no good reason) be turned off.

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3 Responses

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  1. ajmacdonaldjr said, on July 31, 2011 at 9:49 am

    Good post, the future of reading (and writing) is here!

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