E-books- All Blow & No Go

You should check this $350 gadget out.  This review is from Slate:



Has the iPod for Books Arrived?

Sony’s new e-book gadget, reviewed.

By Blake Wilson


Posted Friday, Oct. 13, 2006, at 6:23 PM ET


Fred sez, “Missed it by that much – It’s not quite there yet.” –

Sometimes it’s hard to beat a pencil & piece of papr! I can’t read a menu without a highlighter pen so it’s not for me… yet.


Sooner or later, people will do most of their reading on portable digital devices. If this horrifies you, then worry not: You have some time. But if you’re impatient for the paperless future, you can embrace it now. Sony has introduced the $350 Reader e-book and the 10,000-title, big-publishing-house-backed Connect e-book store. The one-time consumer-electronics superpower clearly hopes the pair will become something of an iPod + iTunes for books. 


Essentially, you’re paying for the screen. The 6-inch display, which is made using E Ink technology, looks surprisingly like paper. It’s very sharp, doesn’t flicker, and can be viewed from any angle, even in bright sunlight. It’s supposed to be easier on the eyes than an LCD, and it definitely was on mine. Because E Ink is "image-stable," it takes no power to keep an image displayed once it’s on-screen—that means the Reader only eats up battery life when you turn pages. You’re supposed to get 7,500 page turns on a single charge.


But it doesn’t have a search function, nor will your book’s index or table of contents be hyperlinked to the pages they reference. So, ironically, it’s significantly easier to find information in a paper book than in its digital equivalent. Sony’s e-content is also read-only: You can bookmark a page, but you can’t add marginalia. In this way, at least, the Reader is a step backward—its Japanese predecessor, the Librié, did allow annotations.
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