Monday, December 3, 2007

Amazon Kindle...

Ok, Ok... I'm a gadget lover.

"Hi, my name is Keith and I'm addicted to gadgets..."

It's true. The Amazon 'Kindle' just came out and I had to have one. It *is* part of what I do to make a living - and it's just plain 'kewl'.

So here is my review after just having used it for a couple of days now. (I had to finish my Online Webinar presentation on Thursday before I would allow myself to even take it out of the box - so I have a modicum of self control)

What is it? - the Kindle is an electronic 'book' reader. This uses a special new type of 'electronic ink' on a special surface that is easy on the eyes - (no eye strain like when reading from a computer monitor) - light weight (like a paperback book) - small (also like a paperback book) and holds lots and lots of books. It also has built-in a wireless (cell phone) connection that allows you to view, choose, and purchase books from wherever you are. You can also download your own books, convert Word .doc files and others to view on the Kindle.

There are well over 100,000 books available to read in this format. I quickly purchased 4 books, subscribed to Readers' Digest, downloaded 'Project Gutenberg' texts, and loaded up the LDS scriptures and Sunday School Instructor manuals to my Kindle... and have room for hundreds more!

A couple of screen shots to help explain how this looks and works.

A very nice article on the Kindle and Electronic Books
Connection to the EV-DO Cellular Service
Information on Purchasing a Book Online Wirelessly
Built-In Dictionary to lookup words you don't know while reading
Front View - Can read with hand on the Left or Right
It knows who you are, and what you like on Amazon - Kewl!
The Keyboard is a Sluggish - and the screen is NOT touch-sensitive - you use a scroll wheel

Some additional notes I learned about the 'Kindle':
  • It has a rudimentary Web Browser
  • It can play Audible Books via its speaker or headphones
  • It can play MP3 files as background music while you read
  • You can subscribe to newspapers and blogs to have them ready for you each morning
  • It is very fast - I downloaded the new Ken Follett book in under a minute
  • The keyboard has a noticeable lag

Having lived with the Kindle for a couple of days now, I can say that it serves most of my immeditate reading needs. (Ok, I know have a problem of having too many books with me on a trip - and I have a harder time choosing what to read) For a guy who really enjoys amassing a vast library of books and displaying them on bookshelves... I'm a little frightened of the future having my reading needs covered by electronic books. But we'll see what the future holds.

My final comment on the Kindle... after reading for just a few minutes the 'device' disappears and you are just 'reading' a book. What better compliment is there than the technology gets out of the way...

So if you are still looking for a gift for someone in your life who really enjoys reading... a Kindle is a great way to go!


Karrissa said...

That is awesome! It totally is something that you would have invented just to make your reading life easier!

Gram said...

I had a hard time believing it even when you showed it to me. Kindle is really cool! I think you will enjoy immensely.

Gramps said...

I enjoyed your update Keith. The pictures of your home are like out of a magazine. Glad you are enjoying the new hi-tech items.

Jeff said...


After seeing your Kindle today I came home, showed my wife, and then discovered that they are impossible to find and going on Ebay for a fortune. Argh. That ONLY makes me want one MORE.
From one gadget lover to another, that is a pretty cool gadget. Maybe after Christmas I'll be able to get one for MSRP.
I enjoyed the Air Magnet class very much and I hope to get to hear you lecture again some time in the near future.

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