Wednesday, November 21, 2007

The "Kindle" - Will it burn out?



Some snips from it--

"...everyone has an opinion, mostly negative, about how it looks. A sample description: "like a prop from an old sci-fi horror flick."

"Kindle, which is roughly the size of a paperback and weighs about 10 ounces, is taking a beating for its appearance. "It has a sort of late-1970s Battlestar Galactica/Pong/digital watch aesthetic about it," Silicon Alley Insider's Peter Kafka wrote. "Which is fine with us -- we're function over form people, when push comes to shove. But this thing would not pass muster with Steve Jobs."
99-Cents a Blog
"Blogs, virtually all of which are free online, will cost Kindle customers either 99 cents or $1.99 a month for a subscription. (TechCrunch, Scobleizer and GigaOM are among the 300 blogs participating in Amazon's program.)

Engadget, among others, called it an odd arrangement.
In a subsequent post, author Ryan Block noted that the blogs are selected by Amazon and will share the revenue with the online retailer.
But why pay to read something that's freely available, asked the Globe and Mail's Mathew Ingram. "I'm trying to think of a blog that I would pay money to read, and nothing is really coming to mind -- not even Engadget or TechCrunch or Boing Boing," he wrote. "But that line of thinking raises the inevitable question: if a blog like Engadget is pretty much as good as a magazine (which I think it is), then why would people pay for one but not the other? That can lead you in one of two directions: charge for the blog, or don't charge for anything. We know which one Jeff has chosen -- but is it the right one?"
____________________
I kind of half-posted this yesterday and somehow deleted my own thoughts on this little item--
First, had I not recently moved up in the tech-world recently by organizing my life by PalmPilot instead of paper Daytimer, I'd be completely bashing this product. However, since I realize the easy and convenience of my PalmPilot, I could see how this product could be useful, especially on vacations or while traveling.

I lugged two bags of books down to California with me. If I could have had them in a small handheld device, it would have been easier than lugging them up to my hotel room. So, I'm open to this.

Where I think the Kindle goes wrong is that 1) It should come with some books uploaded in it. And a good selection of independent press books too, not just the big guys.
2) Blogs should be free.
3) If you purchase a REAL book through Amazon, you should get the ebook as well (or for 50 cents more)
Right now, by buying this, you're just buying an empty shelf at the library, not any words. That bothers me. For $399, you should at least get to choose 5 books to download as well.
And I don't know if poetry books will be available in eBook, I'd need to find that out as well.
I think it has possibilities and definitely for travel, but for now, it just not "the best that it could be," so I'll have to pass in favor of my sofa, my fireplace, and my stack of paper books.
(I'll be watching to see if Amazon upgrades it in the near future...)

1 comment:

poet with a day job said...

Love the idea of it, and your ideas about improving it...

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