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Over the last few months I've noticed on my bus commute into work people have been popping up with these electronic ink devices like the Amazon Kindle and the Barnes ...
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  1. #1
    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    eReaders: What do you think?


    Over the last few months I've noticed on my bus commute into work people have been popping up with these electronic ink devices like the Amazon Kindle and the Barnes & Noble Nook.

    What do you all think of them? I must admit, I'm kind of intrigued by a few of the features they offer:

    1. Extended battery life since the display only needs power to change pages.
    2. Lifetime free cellular internet access to download new books
    3. Looks good in the sun, no glare
    4. Potentially hundreds of books in a tiny device with a screen the size of a paperback.


    Of course, their biggest competition right now is good old-fashioned print books. The prices of the books I tend to read are comparable (and sometimes cheaper) in eReader format on Amazon than what I'd pay for a new paperback, but there's still the price of the device itself that's hard to swallow ($259 for the Kindle or Nook).
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    Linux Enthusiast scathefire's Avatar
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    Books are probably more water resistant than eReaders. If I spilled Mountain Dew on an eReader, it would probably be game over. But not for good ol' fashioned books.

    Like most technologica, they are super cool looking. One problem I see with them, is sharing books with people you have bought. Its been a while since I checked, but last time I did look that was out of the question. Only something low-tech like printed text will allow that.

  3. #3
    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scathefire View Post
    Books are probably more water resistant than eReaders. If I spilled Mountain Dew on an eReader, it would probably be game over. But not for good ol' fashioned books.
    True, but I read an article about reading with a Kindle by a pool where the air was particularly humid. Humidity can make a paperback quite....mushy. That's not to say the electronics in a Kindle or Nook aren't going to fry if it's wet enough... but it's something to consider. If they're sealed well enough they might actually do better than a paperback.

    Like most technologica, they are super cool looking. One problem I see with them, is sharing books with people you have bought. Its been a while since I checked, but last time I did look that was out of the question. Only something low-tech like printed text will allow that.
    That's a definite advantage, but one they're looking at from what I've read. The Nook will let you lend a book to someone for 2 weeks at a time, either to another Nook device or a Blackberry/iPhone/PC with the B&N reader app installed. The Kindle lets you share on Kindles within the same account or a Kindle and a PC/iPhone/Blackberry with the same account.

    They still haven't addressed the idea of reselling stuff though, which is something I tend to do a lot. So yeah, physical books are still a good bit of competition, not just from a price standpoint.
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    oz
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    Quote Originally Posted by techieMoe View Post
    Of course, their biggest competition right now is good old-fashioned print books. The prices of the books I tend to read are comparable (and sometimes cheaper) in eReader format on Amazon than what I'd pay for a new paperback, but there's still the price of the device itself that's hard to swallow ($259 for the Kindle or Nook).
    I've personally never enjoyed reading from an electronic display as much as I do from a good, old-fashioned paper-based book, but I'm reasonably sure that all but the very rich (or very lucky) will eventually be forced to make the switch, like it or not. That said, I'll be holding off for a while longer, perhaps even as long as financially possible unless a display comes along that looks and feels better than a real book.
    oz

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    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ozar View Post
    I've personally never enjoyed reading from an electronic display as much as I do from a good, old-fashioned paper-based book, but I'm reasonably sure that all but the very rich (or very lucky) will eventually be forced to make the switch, like it or not. That said, I'll be holding off for a while longer, perhaps even as long as financially possible unless a display comes along that looks and feels better than a real book.
    I've been told that the eInk displays are a lot closer to ink-and-paper than an LCD or OLED screen, so they're easier on your eyes. I haven't played with a Kindle or Nook long enough to know from personal experience.
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    Linux Guru Cabhan's Avatar
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    Well, I own a Kindle, and I'm a huge fan.

    To start, the screen is e-ink, which is a physical picture, not a screen. I've read it for hours upon hours without my eyes straining (rather like I have done with physical books).

    The DRM thing is an issue, to be sure. The Kindle does support PDFs and Mobipocket files, which need not have DRM. Also, the Amazon DRM was recently cracked, as I recall.

    If you do buy the books from Amazon, it is very convenient to purchase them directly from the device.

    One surprising advantage for me that I noticed was the convenience of holding it. It is easy to hold in one hand or lay on a table, so you can easily read while doing something else.

    I have entirely converted to e-books, and I love the convenience of reading on my Kindle. The price is a bit high, I admit, but mine was actually a present, and because I have used it recently for two of my textbooks (saving me about $70), I've come a long way towards recouping that cost .

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    oz
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    Quote Originally Posted by techieMoe View Post
    I've been told that the eInk displays are a lot closer to ink-and-paper than an LCD or OLED screen, so they're easier on your eyes. I haven't played with a Kindle or Nook long enough to know from personal experience.
    Right... I've seen them and they definitely look better than text on a computer monitor, but still not as good as a real book, and they don't feel as good in your hands, at least in my own opinion. I should add that I also prefer turning and flipping through real pages.

    Either way, I'm glad they are out there for those that like them, and hope that real books continue to be available for a very long time for those folks that prefer them, as well.
    oz

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    Administrator MikeTbob's Avatar
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    I think those things are pretty cool but I'm just now beginning to understand how to use my smart phone!
    I read a lot of books and I highly doubt I'll ever switch to all digital.....I'm just too old school for that. Don't get me wrong, I use the heck out of our sons Ipod touch, and we all have smart phones but like ozar said....nothing beats the feel of a real book, (especially mountain dew soaked books)!
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    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cabhan View Post
    Well, I own a Kindle, and I'm a huge fan.

    To start, the screen is e-ink, which is a physical picture, not a screen. I've read it for hours upon hours without my eyes straining (rather like I have done with physical books).

    The DRM thing is an issue, to be sure. The Kindle does support PDFs and Mobipocket files, which need not have DRM. Also, the Amazon DRM was recently cracked, as I recall.

    If you do buy the books from Amazon, it is very convenient to purchase them directly from the device.

    One surprising advantage for me that I noticed was the convenience of holding it. It is easy to hold in one hand or lay on a table, so you can easily read while doing something else.

    I have entirely converted to e-books, and I love the convenience of reading on my Kindle. The price is a bit high, I admit, but mine was actually a present, and because I have used it recently for two of my textbooks (saving me about $70), I've come a long way towards recouping that cost .
    Good to hear. Just out of curiosity, do you have a Kindle 2 or a DX?
    Last edited by techieMoe; 01-28-2010 at 12:08 PM.
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    Linux Guru Cabhan's Avatar
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    I have a Kindle 2. The DX is nice, but I do wonder about the pocket convenience with the larger screen, and I have my doubts about whether the price is worth it.

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