Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Applied Gadgetry Series: Kindle Keyboard

I love books. I adore the bittersweet smell of book paper, and its crisp and smooth texture, as I turn the pages. The sensation of books is what I miss when reading from my Kindle Keyboard. But I certainly do not miss how pricey each book is and the weight of carrying two or three books (especially when I also carry a pile of photocopied Supreme Court cases and law books, which would take forever to convert electronically, and other IP issues).

The Amazon Kindle is optimized for reading with its core feature, the E-ink Pearl electronic paper display technology, which does not have the glare of other eReaders. It's way cheaper ($140.00), is claimed to have battery life of over 1 month, and weighs only 8.7 lbs.!

To download books, one can easily connect to Amazon through either Wifi or 3G. Or, connect the Kindle via USB and transfer it manually. I find it very useful to just convert documents (such as code provisions, rules, and even cases) to .pdf format, which is compatible with the Kindle. According to Amazon, the device can contain up to 3,500 books.

The Wifi does not have any issues, but my first purchase of a Kindle had a defective 3G. The hardware must have been a dud. Luckily, Amazon replaces easily. What's great about the 3G version is that one can access the internet anytime and anywhere (where there's signal), which is especially useful for emergencies. But of course, the web browser is "experimental" so it's slow, only works best with text (otherwise, the Kindle will hang), and surfing is in grayscale. I love it because it's like reading Harry Potter's The Daily Prophet.

The QWERTY Keyboard is awkward at first (especially because the numbers and symbols must be activated through the symbol button) but one will get used to it easily.

I hardly use the playback mode for .mobi files. Yes, the Kindle can read for you, but I find that almost pointless, because again, the Kindle is supposed to be an eReader, not an .mp3 player.

Verdict: 5 stars.

Photo from:

Mary Rhauline Lambino, Entry No. 5

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