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Great moments of 2011: Rekindled

Great moments of 2011: Rekindled published on 4 Comments on Great moments of 2011: Rekindled

I think I’ve said this before. But no matter how interesting the book I’m reading is, no matter how important the subject matter, no matter how well-written and absorbing – if I’m reading it on the iPad, I can constantly hear the whispering of all the apps I could be using instead. That said, I read a lot of stuff on the iPad (both iBooks and Kindle), and I imagine the same would be true on the Fire.

On a related note, while we were flying back from our holiday a few days ago, my daughter looked up from her book, past me and my iPad, and over to the device in the hands of a passenger across the aisle. Her eyes went wide: “What’s that?”

“It’s called a Kindle.”

“It looks just like paper! Is it electronic?”



One last longing glance, and then back to her book.


Which is exactly the reason why I received the bog standard Kindle as a Christmas present this year and absolutely love it.

I very consciously wanted a way to be able to read more, not have to cart hundreds of books around in the future, and not have anything to distract me from actually reading longer writing. Plus I charged it on Christmas Day and having already gone through 3 books and several shorter articles etc, it’s telling me I’m starting to get a low battery now.

Dan, you’re making me think I should give my old Kindle (1st generation, a birthday gift from Alex) another chance. The main issue for me is — this is painfully typical for us — that we bought an American Kindle, a full year (at least) before WhisperNet service arrived north of the border. So the only way to update it is via the computer, manually dragging and dropping books.

Which I still might do.

Dragging and dropping is a little bit of a pain (although it’s a good time to charge it up at the same time)…

The only downside for me is the ease with which I can make late night impulse purchases. I’m somewhat addicted to reading, and have reasonably wide tastes, so I’ve always had a list of 20 or so books to read at any time – one click purchases mean that the barrier to stop me constantly buying new books is just my willpower and the fact that some Kindle books are still ludicrously expensive. It’s hard to justfy downloading a book today when I can order the paperback for less and have it arrive within 24 hours, plus then resell it to possibly recoup some of the purchase price…

But there are a growing number of great free and low cost titles, whether it’s from Seth Godin’s Domino Project, or by people like Cory Doctorow, for example.

I’ll still buy the occasional print book for something which I really want to treasure, such as anything by William Gibson, but looking around my living room, I must have at least 100+ books which I’ve read once and will probably never have the inclination to read again, so either need to sell or donate to charity to reduce some of the clutter…

Something to be said for the Kobo over the Kindle. a) it’s Canadian, b) it supports EPUB so it’s easily sideloadable with any other content you’ve got (although I believe there are tools to convert the standard EPUB to Kindle’s format) c) you can rent books from BC libraries onto it.

For either though, the joy of having all the books you’re currently reading with you, in less than the space consumed by a single paper book, is amazing. And I never tire of just staring at that eInk screen in amazement :-)

Certainly seems to have taken off in the last 12 months… almost any time I’m on a crowded Skytrain I’ll now see someone with an ebook reader.

As Dan points out though, still frustrating that when I choose to buy the electronic version of a book I don’t have the same ability to resell/lend/give away that I would with a physical copy.

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