Kindle E-Book Reader From Amazon
The Kindle e-Book reader will be unveiled Monday by Amazon.com. The device is said to be geared toward "road warrirors" and business travelers.
(Amazon Kindle e-Book reader)
The e-book reader has been around in various forms (some of them pretty cool) for years. Take a look at the Toshiba SD-Book: An E-Book With Two Pages, the Sony LIBRIe E-Ink Electronic Book and the very stylish Sony Reader Electronic Paper Book.
The Kindle e-book reader will have a headphone jack, for those who prefer to have books read to them. It will also have Wi-Fi connectivity (for direct download from Amazon).
Amazon.com has also reportedly made deals with as many as 100 newspaper publishers; these publications will also be available for daily downloads.
The final price is expected to be about $399.
Many people are wondering whether it will be possible to hack the Kindle; that is, will you be able to convert other formats to run on the Kindle? Jerry Pournelle opines:
The Kindle reads only a few formats: Kindle (.awz), text (.txt), and non-DRM Mobi (.mobi, .prc). It will also read mp3 and Audible.com (.aa) sound files. You can pay Amazon a nominal fee to convert .doc, .pdf, and other format files to Kindle but it won't read them natively. This is nuts: no one wants to send important documents off to Amazon to be converted.
MobiPocket DRM'd books are perhaps the most successful ebook format, and Amazon sells MobiPocket ebooks. I've not heard what will happen to those. Will Amazon convert them for Kindle buyers? Otherwise the early adopters who bought DRM'd MobiPocket Books are just out of luck. On the other hand, many ebooks including both free and sold Baen ebooks should be readable on the Kindle without conversion.
Of course, as Robert Bruce Thompson points out, it won't be long before the user community hacks the conversion software, and converters will be offered free all over the net. That means that any pirated book can - and thus will - be converted into Kindle format and made available universally; and since Amazon is charging ten bucks for a new book encumbered with Digital Rights Management software, the incentive to use the pirate services rather than buy the book may well overcome the ethical inhibitions of many.
(Via Computing At Chaos Manor)
The earliest reference to the e-book reader concept that I know about is the opton from Stanislaw Lem's Return from the Stars, a prescient 1961 novel.
I spent the afternoon in a bookstore. There were no books in it. None had been printed for nearly half a century. And how I have looked forward to them, after the micro films that made up the library of the Prometheus! No such luck. No longer was it possible to browse among shelves, to weigh volumes in hand, to feel their heft, the promise of ponderous reading. The bookstore resembled, instead, an electronic laboratory. The books were crystals with recorded contents. They can be read the aid of an opton, which was similar to a book but had only one page between the covers. At a touch, successive pages of the text appeared on it...
(Read more about the opton e-book reader)
Via Amazon to debut Kindle e-book reader.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 11/17/2007)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion (Back On) ( 8 )
Related News Stories -
Fujitsu Touchscreen Mixes Real And Virtual Worlds
'His hands flashed over the keyboard - it had not been there a moment before, but it was operative...'- Frederik Pohl, 1965.
Nanowire Memristor Networks Form 'Brains'
'He had constructed ... a brain, of metal... whose atomic structure he claimed was analogous to the atomic structure of a living brain.'- Edmond Hamilton, 1926.
US Census Will Be Online In 2020
'Most would be in English, but some would be in Spanish, some in Amerind languages, some in Chinese...'- John Brunner, 1975.
Wireless Brain-Computer Interface
'I used my implant to tell MILLIE [a mainframe computer] what we wanted and she took care of it," Art said.'- Pournelle and Niven, 1981.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Sweat Be Gone! Non-Wetting Fabric
'The skin-contact layer is porous.'
German Firm Seeks To Recruit Autistics
Not a deficit, but a strength.
NASA Supports Pizza Printer
Is it extra with printed pepperoni?
Could Ground-Based Lasers De-Orbit Space Junk?
'Then their lasers vaporized the smaller satellites...'
'Hello, Computer!' Google Now Highlighted at IO13
MIT Robot Cheetah Video Shows Gait Transition
'The legs are long, curled way up to deliver power, like a cheetah's.'
TrackingPoint Smart Rifle
Not your typical 'smart bullet' approach.
Sky City's 220 Stories Are Go
'It rested among green parklands and... stood in total isolation, a glittering block of whites and flashing windows dotted with colors.'
CARMAT Bioprosthetic Total Human Heart Replacement
'George Walt's corporate existence proved the workability of wholly mechanical organs...'
Personal Sniffer Robots
'...The ticking combinations of the olfactory system of the hound.'
Physical Exam? We've Got Apps
See the future of handheld, personal medical devices.
The Interplanetary Internet, Vint Cerf Speaking
'This was the center of Interplanetary Communications.'
Drosophila Robotica, The Mechanical Fly
'... the Scarab [flying robot] buzzed into the great workroom as any intruding insect might...'
Robo-Raven Flapping Wing Robot Bird
'When he had first built them, they had been crude indeed, flying mechanisms with little more than a reflex-response unit.'
Japan's Nursing Home Robot Plan
Let's make the Roujin Z-0001 Robotic Bed!
Samsung Smart TVs With Gesture Control
'He waved his hand and the circuit switched abruptly.'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories