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Old 04-09-2008, 10:17   #1
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The Kindle

Hi All,
As an avid reader, one of my concerns is not having enough reading material once my husband and I take off to go cruising (we leave in 3 mos). I was wondering if anyone out there has purchased the Kindle from Amazon.com. It allows you to purchase a book on line and it is sent to your Kindle via cell phone technology. If anyone has purchased and used it, what do you think? I guess my biggest concern would be, can you read it while in full sun? Any thoughts?

I look forward to 'reading' your comments.....
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Old 04-09-2008, 10:22   #2
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the screen is great in full sun. you will find three problems: 1) cost - for $400 you can buy / trade / borrow a lot of paperbacks 2) connectivity - the direct download feature only works in the US 3) fragility - they don't bounce or get wet well. you can forget reading on a windy day while going upwind, and should it ever fall off a table, etc, you might just end up with a $400 paperweight.

IMHO the device isn't really there yet. its too expensive and lacks durability and some features. right now it seems best suited to a business traveler who wants something shiny and thin to replace the two hardcover books they might bring on a longer trip.
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Old 04-09-2008, 10:28   #3
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I looked at it, but i don't really see the advantage. You have to be in the us cell area to download, $400 up front, books cost just about the same, you can't trade them with your friends for other books and in my case not every book i want to read is available.

On a side note they are coming out with a new version soon so i would wait.
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Old 04-09-2008, 10:29   #4
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I think the old tried and true works best here:

Libraries and "give a book, take a book" as well as the occasional purchase of a book you just can't find but need to read.

When we moved aboard a while back, we ditched four 6'x4' bookcases full of some of the greatest reading ever. Even our old monohull couldn't handle that load.

We donated these books to libraries and now rely on getting library cards when in a port for any given time. Sometimes we will just go to the library on a hot, unbearable day and read inside the library all day.

We haven't seen many treasures in the "give a book, take a book" areas , but if you are just plain bored and need material to read, they are adequate.
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Old 04-09-2008, 10:31   #5
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Don't worry about the lack of reading material while cruising. Cruisers have tons of books and swap them regularly. I usually have about 30 aboard and will turn these over a couple of times in six months.
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Old 04-09-2008, 10:36   #6
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I have taken a different approach. I got an 80gb Ipod classic, and started collecting audio books. I now have over 600.

I also have the ability to make audio books from pdf etc by using near real speech software. Its not as good as somebody reading as you dont get the changes of tone or emphasis, but it is acceptable.

This enables me to listen to the ipod, even at night without losing my night vision, and without sacrificing any ability to keep a good lookout.
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Old 04-09-2008, 11:03   #7
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My girlfriend got me a Kindle for my birthday coming up in October. She got it for me early so I could have it for the recent cruise I took while waiting for my new job.

So far I really like it. The books are cheaper, though not much. The screen is easy to see except in low light, it does not have a backlight. The battery lasted about 10 days before needing a recharge (I did turn off wireless).

It can be a bit awkward when you first start reading and it is too easy to turn the page accidently.

I also like the built in dictionary. You can look words up on the fly, which I think is neat. There is a lot of room for improvement, but that is what technology is all about.

You can also get a ton of free books for it.

And, just because I thought it would be interesting, I spent a few minutes reading CF on the kindle. The browser leaves a lot to be desired for general web browsing (it is aimed at shopping for books from Amazon) but it was kinda neat.
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Old 04-09-2008, 11:11   #8
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Wait for Kindle v2.0, I will. The first version needs some improvement. Till then I will use my Veizon smart phone and my IPOD for reading. I started with a Rocket Book years ago; they went out of business. The Sony product doesn't have a big library. The phone has a 2gb chip and carries more books than my home library. I buy books from E-books for this phone. The screen is small but the font is scalable.
I have an IPOD with 160GB. I have an account with Audio.com and down load books from their site. The IPOD could probably hold over one thousand audio books. Paired to a set of wireless headphones I can leave the IPOD in a safe enviornment. I have more books on the IPOD than I can read in a year.
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Old 04-09-2008, 11:19   #9
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Do you guys ever miss that nice feeling of sitting down to a book - using no power, feeling the paper and getting cozy?


Or... am I going the way of the person who used to enjoy taking out a quill pen for a good write on some fine parchment?
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Old 04-09-2008, 11:48   #10
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I bought Jill a Sony reader for Christmas last. We now have that on board.


We DO like to read normal books and have never NOT been able to get our fill of different books to read. Each cruiser stop normally has a batch for trading.


BUT the Reader is just a spare item. We have a CD (NOT DVD) with over 1,000 books on it! That is a lot of reading! We also went to a couple of good sites on the WEB, like Project Gutenberg (Main Page - Gutenberg ) that has over 25,000 FREE books to download (ALSO A LOT of books on tape). The reader will also play MP3s.


So, is it needed, NO is it a nice to have, very much. And all the rest of what was said we found true also, no books sold out of the USA, daylight reading is very good, don't drop it or get it wet!


A fun toy....


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Old 04-09-2008, 13:57   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ssullivan View Post
Do you guys ever miss that nice feeling of sitting down to a book - using no power, feeling the paper and getting cozy?


Or... am I going the way of the person who used to enjoy taking out a quill pen for a good write on some fine parchment?
I certainly would, especially when the only sound is the breeze, waves lapping against the hull and a clanking halyard.
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Old 04-09-2008, 17:05   #12
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another brand

I have a version of the same type of ePaper device called the iliad by a company called iRex. I love it. It has internal memory and cf card and usb thumb drive storage so it can handle any amount of content. I have found thousands of free books and make my own pdfs of non-electronic content. It is a non-DRM linux based machine so you can read anybodys content whether you purchase it, find it on the web or make it yourself. It interfaces with newspaper services if you have a web connection and a subscription so you can get all your favorite news (if you care). You can mark up the pages electronically and keep notes and bookmarks and listen to audio files. It is very early in the development of these type of machines and I for one think they are brilliant. I bought mine ($700.00) just to encourage the development. There should be colour ones coming out soon. The key is the electronic paper that the display consists of. It reflects just like real paper and the display only uses power to change pages so the battery life is incredible. I know that you can buy a lot of free books for that kind of money but I do very technical work and keep all my research and reference books on one cf card and now have a library of over 1000 technical books with me at all times. Now that is worth something! What is space and weight worth to you? BTW mine is rubberized and quite tough, about the size of a large paperback, weeks of battery life.

iRex Technologies
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Old 04-09-2008, 17:24   #13
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I have taken a different approach. I got an 80gb Ipod classic, and started collecting audio books. I now have over 600.
My boat partner swears by audio books. Yes, Sully, paper is still great, but in terms of what you can carry nothing beats electronic storage. He can also be on watch, at night, in the cockpit with one ear bud in and "read" a book.
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Old 04-09-2008, 17:48   #14
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My Ipod will play over the boat Stereo system. With a separate audio zone in the cockpit and full control it does no disturb thoes below unless thay wish to listen. Audio books on a long night watch are a great thing. ("Jaws" might not play well.)
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Old 04-09-2008, 20:57   #15
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I love my Kindle!!

On a catamaran we are always trying to keep the weight down and books are not lite.

My gal also loves the Kindle.

We communter cruise, so lugging books to the boat through the airport is not fun.

Kindles are great on planes also because you can have several books and periodicals with you in a small package.

My IPod and Kindle are my two favorite boat toys.

Kindle's are getting cheaper also.

Just make sure to download all your reading materials prior to leaving the US
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