Tag Archives: kindle

Give the Gift of a Kindle this Holiday

You can now send anyone on your holiday shopping list an eBook – even if they don’t own a Kindle device. You can give the gift of an eBook to anyone who has an email address. According to Amazon, the Kindle store is “the first major bookstore to offer eBook gifting.”

Kindle books can be given and received by anyone with an e-mail address. Kindle books can be read either on Kindle or on your PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad, BlackBerry, or Android Phone using one our our free reading apps. Kindle books received as gifts can be exchanged for Amazon.com gift cards. All Kindle books available for purchase in the Amazon.com Kindle Store can be given as gifts.

Give the gift of literacy this holiday season.

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Read and Share Book Samples Online with Kindle for the Web

Kindle for the Web allows you to read a portion of a book right within your web browser, without having to install anything. Click the “Read first chapter FREE!” button on selected Amazon book overview pages. A new browser window will open containing your sample. When you are ready to purchase the full edition of the Kindle book, click the “Get Kindle Edition” button. Choose whether to download direct to your Kindle or another reading device and you’re finished.

Sharing your favorite books has now become even easier with this application. How often have you thoroughly loved a book and wanted to tell your friends about it? When was the last time you wished you could somehow explain what a particular storyline was about? Kindle for the Web makes it simple by helping you to share more than ever before.

  • Book samples can be made visible on any website that supports embedded content. If you can add script tags to your site or blog, you can post a sample.
  • First, click the “Embed” button, visible on the right side of the screen when viewing any book sample. You will then see the code to embed. Click on “Customize” if you would like to change the width and height of the window or add your associate tag.
  • After making any customization changes, simply copy the embed code and paste it into the source code of your website or blog.
  • You may also share book samples via email, Facebook, or Twitter by clicking the “Share” button on the right side of the sample screen.

This is an excellent way to decide if a book is worth the money to buy – and the time to read all the way through. I don’ t know about you, but I can always tell within the first chapter if a tome is worth my time. If I’m still interested at the end of that first look, then I will settle in to finish it. Being able to consume a bit more of the content than the jacket or cover provides is an excellent step, in my opinion.

What are your thoughts? If you’re a Kindle owner, will you be using Kindle for the Web?

Capacitative 6" e-reader prototype by Sagem Wireless at Mobile World Congress 2010

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This is the first 6″ e-reader with a capacitative touch screen, it enables it to be much more compact than the Kindle as text input can be done on the touch screen. Although this is an early prototype demonstrated by Sagem Wireless at Mobile World Congress. The feature of using a capacitative touch screen on the e-reader does not remove from the readability of the screen and allows for finger touch screen input through the interfaces. A capacitative stylus input may also be supported. This device will include 3G and WiFi wireless data modems.

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The FBI Wants to Know Where You are Online

An article posted yesterday on CNET has Internet users bashing the FBI up one side – and down the other. Many are screaming about “Big Brother”, and civil rights. Others are proclaiming that they are going to leave the Internet completely, which I honestly don’t see happening. Seriously, folks… you’d be able to totally give up your online life?

According to the article, the FBI is pressing Internet service providers to record which Web sites customers visit and retain those logs for two years, a requirement that law enforcement believes could help it in investigations of child pornography and other serious crimes. If logs of Web sites visited began to be kept, they would be available only to local, state, and federal police with legal authorization such as a subpoena or search warrant.

It’s unclear what, exactly, the FBI wants to keep track of. The possibilities include requiring an Internet provider to log the Internet protocol (IP) address of a Web site visited, a domain name, a host name, or an actual website URL. While the first three categories could be logged without doing deep packet inspection, the fourth category would require it. That could run up against opposition in Congress.

What are your thoughts on this? Do you feel the FBI has the right to require ISPs to keep such information? Also, do they have the right to OUR information in this manner? There are many excellent things being posted online, such as this story, on a daily basis – some of it right here in our own community!

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Are Apple's iPad Shortcomings Real or Perceived?

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I’m not an Apple apologist, honestly. I don’t like everything they’ve created, I swear. I don’t own iEverything (no Apple TV, no iPod, no MacBook Air, etc.). However, in light of the flurry of initial iPad complaints, I just had to counterbalance perceived shortcomings with a modicum of reason.

EMPHASIS: Perceived shortcomings, not actual shortcomings. The damn thing hasn’t even shipped yet!

If you fell victim to the hype surrounding the iPad, you deserve to be disappointed. Don’t hold Apple accountable for it not living up to some truly insane expectations.

Mind you, I find the lack of a camera a glaring omission from the first generation iPad. The aspect ratio (4:3) and stunted video output (not even 720p) are also shockers. We might find these limitations addressed in future hardware revisions, iHope.

  1. Still no support for Flash. Adobe needs to get on their shit, yo. It’s not Apple’s fault that Flash is one of the worst-written, unstable, unoptimized pieces of software on the planet. Blame Adobe, not Apple. The #1 reason to use either Safari on Snow Leopard or Google Chrome on either Windows or OS X is to sandbox that POS Flash plugin. If HTML 5 takes off, say good-bye to Flash and its proprietary madness that we’ve been made to deal with. No support for Flash is an absolute blessing, folks.
  2. No USB Ports. I’ve read that this was a “must.” A “must” for what, I ask? A laptop, sure. The iPad isn’t a notebook computer. It’s like complaining that the iPad doesn’t have a CD tray.
  3. Apple is still using AT&T for 3G. So, don’t buy the 3G service? Even in a pinch, you could get it for a month and drop it the next – with NO CONTRACT, I’m not sure what else there is to complain about?
  4. It’s an oversized iPod Touch. This argument has some degree of merit, but here’s what the iPod Touch doesn’t have: a fast processor (by today’s standards), wireless 802.11 N, an LED screen that supports IPS, support for an external keyboard, customizable SpringBoard background, allegedly-longer battery life, and… of course, a screen that’s much more accomodating for sharing and viewing content.
  5. $499 is too much to spend on it. Really? I dare you to find another touch-controlled device that’s EQUALLY powered and just as usable today. Compare the starter-level iPad to Amazon’s Kindle DX (which is currently selling for $425); it makes the iPad look like a bargain. If you put it in the eBook Reader category – ALONE – it’s a clear leader.
  6. It’s not a Tablet PC. Duh. Do I really need to explain why this isn’t a valid complaint? Jesus Diaz did a great job explaining this on Gizmodo last week.
  7. Still no multitasking. Here’s a suggestion: focus on the task at hand instead of juggling? More to the point, research is now suggesting that multitasking actually slows us down! I’m not going to hold a device responsible for what neuroscientists say is a shortcoming in human wiring – and neither should you. Pay attention to that which needs it – and nothing more. There are certainly cases for needing more than one app open at a time, but not at the peril of a good (single) app experience. Knowwhatimean?
  8. Still no background apps. I do believe the workflow of app switching could be better, but in my experience, background apps zap power – and one of the biggest issues with mobile devices today is battery life. I’m more concerned about my “percentage left” than I am knowing I can’t have a Web page and email message open simultaneously. Moreover, I’ve used devices that support background apps… and… I really don’t miss ’em all that much.
  9. There’s too much bezel. That’s what I thought, too – at first. Then I thought: “What if I touch something I didn’t want to touch, when I was just trying to hold on to the gosh darn thing?” Point also addressed by the must-read John Gruber.
  10. “iPad” is a stupid name. Yeah, I’m still cringing over their choice – but in all my 36 years on Earth, I’ve never avoided a product due to its name. Its color and design, yes – but its name? Who cares what it’s called if it works? And that’s still the question which remains: will the iPad WORK? I can make fun of a million names, too.

For as much as you might not want one, the iPhone OS experience is the most usable mobile (and touch) platform out there today; I’ve yet to experience anything like it. I got my Mom an engraved iPod for her birthday last year, and she’s been eyeing the Kindle. I told her to wait – and I’m glad I did. It may not be the end-all, be-all gadget for geeks, but for people like my Mom? More than adequate.

The iPad is an all-encompassing content consumption device that belongs more in the traditional “media reader” camp than it does the traditional “tablet computer” camp. When you place it in that category, the reasons Apple made its decisions with the iPad become largely clear. Would you mock an eBook reader that didn’t have a camera?! I’d hope not. And what about admonishing a digital photo frame that didn’t run Flash apps? Not likely. The iPad might compare to an Archos 5 Internet Tablet, but even that isn’t a very fair comparison.

Seems to me that most initial iPad complaints are largely due to the problems WE are having in classifying this device in our existing taxonomy of gadgetry. From Wikipedia on perception:

The processes of perception routinely alter what humans see. When people view something with a preconceived concept about it, they tend to take those concepts and see them whether or not they are there. This problem stems from the fact that humans are unable to understand new information, without the inherent bias of their previous knowledge. A person’s knowledge creates his or her reality as much as the truth, because the human mind can only contemplate that to which it has been exposed. When objects are viewed without understanding, the mind will try to reach for something that it already recognizes, in order to process what it is viewing. That which most closely relates to the unfamiliar from our past experiences, makes up what we see when we look at things that we don’t comprehend.

Food for thought.

Oh, and I’m also looking to get a new PC (with Windows 7) at some point in the near future – so stick THAT in your fanboy-pipe and smoke it. 😉 That, and if you have any recommendations, I’m all ears – but not because I’m looking to replace something in my life, but augment it.

What are Your Greatest Accomplishments?

Reading threads on Geeks a little while ago, one headline in particular jumped out at me. The poster asks: What are your greatest accomplishments in life?. Even if you feel you have gone “nowhere” in life, the fact remains that you still have things to be proud of. So what if you haven’t reached all of your goals yet? The point is that if you really look at yourself and your past, you will indeed find many things to be proud of.

I’m interested in hearing your stories. Did you ace a test you thought for sure you would bomb? Did you win a scholarship that you had prayed for? Did your website or business garner more attention than you dreamed it could? It doesn’t matter how “small” an accomplishment may seem to you, the fact is that it is still something you should gloat about! So go ahead – share it with all of us!

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What Do You Like About Likaholix?

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There are many things in this life that I like. I like green tea. It’s Geekalicious, really. I like old video games, like back on Atari. I like bamboo. I guess I’m a likaholic. If you’re one as well, you might like Likaholix.

Likaholix allows you to share, discuss and discover your likes with people you know. Basically, you just like things. It asks me to enter the name of an item. So, I entered the word lamp. It gives me a few different options to choose from, or I can enter a web link to what it is that I liked.

Once you select the item, click an image that’s representative of the like. Next, you need to say something about why you like that particular thing. I can optionally select my location, and add tag words. I can edit my like, and leave a comment.

If others happen to like the same things as me, then they can say they like it as well. This way, I’ll find people who like the same things I do, and may meet new friends. This site is all about likes – and no haters!

Right now, Likaholix are giving away five Amazon Kindles to people who join and become extremely active at liking things and people. Why does the world have to be so full of negativaty? The glass is half full, not half empty!

Did you know your friends like the things they like? Do they know what you like?! Likaholix is a great place to find out.

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Is Amazon’s Kindle on Fire?

I’m still not ready to look beyond my iPhone for general reading needs.

Yes, the screen is smaller compared to Amazon’s Kindle, and the battery life is certainly shorter – but it offers a much more rich experience for me, and I’ll never forget it at home.

There are some who love their Kindle, some who don’t want it at all, and some (like me) who are still waiting for that killer feature. When I was first asked to look at the Kindle – before it had been announced to the public, mind you – I suggested a few tweaks to the hardware. Looks like one of my suggestions made it into the new product (charging by USB).

That didn’t score me any brownie points, as I’d have to buy my Kindle just like the rest of the galaxy does. Only thing is: I really don’t feel that compelled to buy a Kindle.

With the next iteration of the Kindle set to be released in a few weeks, I asked my Twitter followers what they thought. Within minutes, I received these responses:

sib1013: If they&#39d sell me a *very* cheap license to all the real books I already own, I&#39d go for it. As it is, very little motivation

about 5 minutes ago

cwliner: I&#39m content with audible + my iPod. I&#39ll get a book if I want to see the print.

about 9 minutes ago

jodyreale: I AM sold on it, which, as a converted Luddite, means that pretty much the whole rest of the world is sold on it too.

about 9 minutes ago

DanaDang: definitely not (yet). I still read a news*paper*. I like paper. I like words on paper. so very 17th century

about 11 minutes ago

JasLucien: I use e-reader on my iPhone, but there is no Kindle in Canada. I find it handy to have a book whereever I roam.

about 12 minutes ago

nwwaew: I&#39d rather use my laptop, Axim PDA, or get a tablet PC. More functionality than a Kindle provides.

about 13 minutes ago

CPWestergaard: I try to use the library to satisfy my pleasure reading needs. For non fiction books that I want to own, I want to own them!

about 14 minutes ago

biss13: Colleague got one and hates it. It looks like a prop from the Star Wars. Give it to Apple for redesign!

about 15 minutes ago

PodWorx: If it allowed for access to *any* online blog/rss feed without $$, I&#39d be sold.

about 17 minutes ago

nickusborne: I have the Sony Reader (can&#39t use Kindle up here in Canada) Took some getting used to, but now LOVE it.

about 19 minutes ago

estherschindler: I want a good friend to have a Kindle to let me play with. I&#39m sure I&#39d have fun with one but unsure if I&#39d keep using it.

about 19 minutes ago

supahstah: if I&#39m going 2 read, I prefer to hold a book and turn pages. Last thing i need is more electronic media

about 20 minutes ago

karebear006: There&#39s something about holding a book and flipping pages that I would miss too much if I had a kindle.

about 20 minutes ago

firespyer: same, was excited about google supporting iPhone&#39s with mobilebooks

about 20 minutes ago

brandontonio: negative ghost rider, I would simply prefer kindle reader software for the laptop

about 20 minutes ago

SRasmussen: I&#39m not sold on the Kindle. I like books. Real books, the smell and feel of paper. I like the library, and going there.

about 21 minutes ago

ChuckSmith: My girlfriend and I want one sooo bad, but they&#39re not available outside the USA yet. 🙁

about 21 minutes ago

andylevy: Not sold on the Kindle til there&#39s a back light.

about 21 minutes ago

thancrus: i like tangible books myself…. i read so few and far between its a waste for me

about 22 minutes ago

mackney: just another screen to mess my eyes up after a full day and night in front of a TFT. Audio books FTW.

about 23 minutes ago

Christyxcore: I can read on the iPhone. No need for a Kindle

about 24 minutes ago

hamlesh: i like the constantly connected side of kindle, but no support in UK 🙁 the sony is pop here, but rubbish imo.

about 24 minutes ago

gurubrandon: I prefer an etch-a-sketch.

about 24 minutes ago

wizardElite: I&#39m not sold on a Kindle yet either. For the price of $359 I would much rather buy a netbook. #kindle2

about 24 minutes ago

einarhagen: Kindles are not in my near future at all.

about 24 minutes ago

jeos80: me neither, i dont see the extra value in it that definitely makes me get one

about 24 minutes ago

rawmeet: nope, not yet. not at this price. Make it 150 and I will pre-order 🙂 are you listening, #amazon?

about 24 minutes ago

TeQ: Who needs another device to lug around? Give me an iphone/android reader any day.

about 25 minutes ago

alwinter: Kindle and it&#39s DRM formats = bleh.

about 25 minutes ago

suraider2001: I bought a kindle for my bf at xmas and he loves it he a bookworm IT guy

about 25 minutes ago

yenra: There is always a right time to buy something one wants, and if that is a Kindle, this is the time (as when iPhone went 3G).

about 26 minutes ago

jrsmithers: no not really, the price point is still to high for me

about 26 minutes ago

skyygirl5000: i would want to buy one, but think it&#39s silly to spend that $$ now.

about 26 minutes ago

pharbeson: Can&#39t see myself carrying a Kindle around. iPhone readers fit in my pocket. And real books are cheap.

about 27 minutes ago

sacgs: i&#39m not sold on getting a Kindle either. what would I use it for, i just don&#39t see it paying off any time soon.

about 27 minutes ago

harrysaxon23: Not in the slightest. Too expensive, too big, too restrictive. Convenience of Stanza on iPhone > paper-like screen.

about 27 minutes ago

k1prd: I want one but $359 USD is still just too steep for a grayscale text display pad. macbook + free google books for me for now.

about 27 minutes ago

bgramer: We ordered K 1.0 and are happy enough that we were upgraded to 2.0. Wife is a voracious reader, so it makes sense for us.

about 27 minutes ago

johnpauldickie: it seems strange to me.

about 28 minutes ago

willplatnick: I&#39m sold, getting rid of my PS3 to get it

about 28 minutes ago

dewbie: Not yet I am waiting for a few more features

about 28 minutes ago

mattyran: It&#39s going to be a while before I get any ebook reader. I&#39m still fully sold on the tactile qualities of printed book 1.0

about 28 minutes ago

tonysteward: sold on it, would love one, limited in resources at the moment though 🙂

about 28 minutes ago

ihateclowns: my wife is sold on a Kindle, which makes the buying decision much easier for me 🙂 I get to play with hers

about 28 minutes ago

marinesetwas: i think i want a Kindle badly. But it simply is not out yet in Germany. Carrier seems to be missing. T-Mobile not willing?

about 28 minutes ago

Tad: You know I love mine Chris… Just finished reading a book on it – looking forward to the next.

about 28 minutes ago

brandonacox: Same feelings – I still like books with pages and paper. I like to dogear things – that damages kindles.

about 28 minutes ago

RealTweeter: Until it smells like a paperback&#39s pages, it&#39s not happening for me.

about 28 minutes ago

woodwindguy24: can&#39t you read books on an iPhone too? Why not just buy an iPhone instead of a kindle???

about 28 minutes ago

ahmedbaig05: Hard books ftw.lol

about 28 minutes ago

TimBrazer: I have an iPod Touch. That&#39s all need.

about 29 minutes ago

Hawkee: Not at all, I&#39m quite happy with my iPod Touch!

about 29 minutes ago

Is the Amazon Kindle eBook Reader Worth It?

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Note: The Kindle is currently backordered 11 to 13 weeks at Amazon and there are no current coupons. We’ll keep an eye out for Kindle coupons in the new year, but your best bet to get one before then is to buy one on eBay

I’m not sure how many of you are into eBooks, but you may have heard of Amazon’s Kindle. It’s been out for quite awhile now. The Kindle is interesting, in that you can download over 200,000 books instantly including New York Times Best Sellers and New Releases for only $9.99. You can read RSS feeds with it, and access parts of the Internet with it. Thanks to electronic paper, a revolutionary new display technology, reading Kindle’s screen is as sharp and natural as reading ink on paper—and nothing like the strain and glare of a computer screen. Kindle is also easy on the fingertips. It never becomes hot and is designed for ambidextrous use so both “lefties” and “righties” can read comfortably at any angle for long periods of time.

The screen is good, for reading text. I have never really wanted Kindle, though. That’s not to say I wouldn’t want an eBook reader though. I’ve always been interested in having something to read with me anytime I’m traveling and such. I love having something like this in an offline capacity. I’ve never been really into reading electronic books. Even if I was, I don’t think I’d want a dedicated device for reading them. With a printed book, I can carry it with me. I can donate it to someone else. Heck, I can even just keep it on my bookshelf. The downside of a paper book would be not being able to search for words or phrases, but how often do I need to do that?

Ponzi purchased a Kindle without my even knowing it. She did that because I’m against the eBook thing for a variety of reasons, including the whole DRM thing. If I were to get into reading eBooks, I’d likely read them on my iPhone. It’s absolutely true that the screen and battery on the Kindle are better, yes. However, which am I more likely to carry with me wherever I go – the iPhone or the Kindle? Yeah, the iPhone is going to win that battle.

Another reason I don’t like the Kindle is due to a few engineering mistakes as I like to call them. The Kindle has a mini USB port – but it doesn’t charge this way. You have to charge it with an AC adaptor. Are you kidding me? If you ask me, that’s just crazy.

Ponzi loves her Kindle, that’s for sure. The reviews on Amazon are great… 4 stars out of more than 7000 reviews. She has proven my point though. Even though she loves the Kindle, she never takes it with her. She does, however, take her iPhone with her everywhere.

There’s a large debate as to whether eBooks are the wave of the future. I think I’d be a lot more interested in this idea if there were an open market for the content, or the ability to read the text wherever I may be – on any platform I should choose. That’s not possible at this moment, thanks to things like DRM.

Here are the most frequently tagged Kindle items on Amazon:


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