Postmodern classic?

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Ebooks as a question of gear

Because my brother says I need write more blog posts, here I am. Thinking of everyone at home, like my grandma and family. Don't want to rehash my old political treads, so maybe I'll write something a little different. Give all my readers a break from telling them how the European social model is breaking down to cold-hearted capitalism. As for me, recently had a few down days, but looks like it'll be busy for the next week or so. Staying busy. Have to...

In the spirit of self-indulgent capitalism, I'll take a moment to meditate on my acquisition strategies; what gear to buy. Lately I've been reading on the laptop quite a bit. But this hurts my eyes a little, since I don't want to go blind or wear glasses sooner than I need to, I started looking for some new toys. Sony is introducing this new ebook reader imminently (I keep checking and it still says 'Spring 06') that looks promising, with this new technology called 'E-ink'. Supposed to be much easier on the eyes. Although ebooks are quite interesting- you can get a lot of the classics and history (most of the books I do read) in text, html or PDF format for free. There is some talk of it replacing those huge textbooks college kids carry around, of course they've been saying that for some time.

However, the new ones are fickle in what format you choose, how they're modified to display, etc. The problem would be how they are stored, and how they would be transported if I upgraded my computer or reader- all those DRM problems. For example, Rough Guides offer some of their guides in ebook format (and maps too, but separately and only for PDA at the moment), although I'm waiting for the places I want to go actually visit be available. Lonely Planet doesn't even have that yet, although it will eventually. But for me, it would be so cool if I could just carry one electronic reader instead of 5 or 6 paperbacks. A portable library. The Philips Iliad does do some things, with e-ink, but it doesn't seem right- and is a bit too expensive as well. There is a generic Chinese model that could be interesting, Jinke V2 or V8, but don't know if it's reliable just yet. A comprehensive comparison of the leading models is here.

Instead of the idea of a portable reader, I'm back to looking at some sort of PDA that I'd need to recharge every day or so. Choices, choices- out here what else do you have?


  • Those Ebooks seem kinda gnarly. The perfect confluence of technology and literature for such a rapacious reader and gear-head such as you. But I'd always be worried about the first generation of any new step in technology. They might not quite have all the bugs really worked out.

    By Anonymous The Manxome Foe, at 6:34 AM  

  • Well, they're considered 2nd generation ebooks, but the 'E-ink' is newish.

    Leaning towards the Sony, 'cuz even if some of the bugs aren't worked out they'll have better coverage I think. And they'll have better material available too, I think.

    By Blogger sunguh5307, at 7:30 PM  

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