I have been in love with Kindle pretty much since day one. Early versions had their problems, most (but not all) of which have been solved. Many people are nostalgic about print and don’t want to go over to electronic books, but there are advantages to my Kindle which can’t be denied:
- I have thousands of books in this house, but very few of them are books I’ll need or read again. The books on my Kindle account are kept for me in the so-called Cloud. I may never read or need some of them again either, but if I do, it takes about thirty seconds to download one and I don’t have to search the whole house for it first. When we move it’s just the Kindle that goes in my purse, and not a hundred boxes that weight forty pounds each.
- Whatever Kindle books I own I can also read on my laptop. This is important for research, because while I can take notes on the Kindle itself, I don’t like flat keyboards. For academic or research work, I open the book on the Kindle app, which is more flexible anyway: better search and notation features. I can copy a paragraph I need to notes (and the citation information is automatically attached). Just the mere ability to search is like a dream come true when the issue is research.
- I can read in bed without disturbing the mathematician.
- I never lose my place in the book.
There are some great new features coming (see the summary here):
Starting in October, many (but not all) hard-copy book which (1) I bought from Amazon (new, not used) and (2) is available in Kindle format will be made available to add to my Kindle library for somewhere between free and three bucks. They are calling this feature Kindle Matchbook.
The wifi features are improving. The newest Kindle (also coming out in October) will have automatic access not just to definitions, but also to Wikipedia. Any word you touch (which brings up a definition) will be saved automatically to a list for future reference.
There is going to be a direct connection to GoodReads, the details still forthcoming (but this will be very useful).
There will be in-line footnotes. Okay, so I’m an academic, and this is a nerdy academic thing, but WOW. I can click on a footnote number and read it right then, no need to go searching someplace else. This makes me happy.
All this makes me so happy that I am going to give away a Kindle — the new Paperwhite Kindle version coming out in October. I’ll set up a way to enter the giveaway drawing in a week or so. So watch this space.
Note: mailart by Luciano Ragozzino, “Giornata della memoria 2012”