First Thoughts on the Kindle

28 02 2010

The church planters at last week’s Church Planting Conference at Heritage Bible Church received an Amazon Kindle (2) as a gift from the church (thank you!!!). I’ve never considered purchasing an e-reader like this because I don’t travel very much, but I’ll gladly utilize the gift in every way possible.

Don’t like:

  • The screen is dim enough to be a problem in low light. I realize that this is also a benefit, as the non-back-lit screen is easier on the eyes. Many varieties of reading light are available (I’ve ordered one), but it’s still a bit annoying to strain to see in dim light.
  • The interface needs some work. Many of the aspects of the navigation are not self-explanatory.
  • The five-way controller is bothersome. I’ve used many similar devices that worked much better (the ball on my Blackberry, the Lenovo trackpoints, digital camera menu controllers, etc.).
  • The ergonomics make the keyboard difficult to use. It’s positioned like a thumb keyboard, but the device is just a bit too wide for that to actually work.
  • You can’t exactly loan a book that you buy for your Kindle.

Like:

  1. It is such a pain to hold a book open. It is so wonderful to hold the Kindle instead.
  2. The technology really does disappear while you interact with the text. No emails popping up, twitter notifications, etc. Just you and the text.
  3. All the other benefits, such as carrying huge stacks of books in one tiny device; nearly instant access to hundreds of thousands of books; periodical, newspaper, and even blog subscriptions; text-to-speech; and much more.
  4. #1.

Yes, #1 is the huge benefit for me, and it overshadows all of my minor gripes listed above. The Kindle is so much easier to carry around and read than most books! I am certain that I will read more because of it. I’m excited to read more because of it!


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