Daily Diary discussion

Would you read a book that is not a book?

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message 1: by Ed (new)

Ed | 237 comments Mod
I watched on the Amazon website the ad for the Kindle...it's an electronic book reader..can download books to it. Looks great but the cost is too high for me. What do others think? I like the wikipedia, and other uses the Kindle offers for quick use as I am reading.


message 2: by Debbie (new)

Debbie (sardonicprincessofcheerfulness) No!!!! Curl up in tub with a good laptop??!! I think not! Give me a page-turner any day....portable, batteries not required, easier to cross-reference.

message 3: by Jeannie (new)

Jeannie | 16 comments The other day I found myself having a serious dispute with my computer. Things did not go well for me, the computer won, hands down. I realized how "easy" a book was. A book never "freezes up", never fails during a power outage and never needs "rebooting".
Give up my books ??? I think not !

message 4: by Tina (new)

Tina I'm a gadget freak. My attic and basement are full of stuff I've bought used for a hot second and discarded. So in that vein, sure I'd get a kindle, play with it with utter glee for a few months and go back to my regular old paper books.

message 5: by Bobbi (new)

Bobbi (bobbij) I agree with you, Ed, the cost is a downer. I'm kinda intrigued with the idea though. Aren't there devices like that already out there that do that and more? Blackberry, I-phone, etc. I already have replaced the written page in some ways...I listen to books on cd, and on my mp3. We have soooo many choices nowadays. The kindle is another one to consider.

message 6: by Nick (new)

Nick (nickqueen) I use a Sony Clie to read ebooks at night in bed after the lights are turned out. I've read many, many books this way. Heck, reading Slaughterhouse-Five and Gateways currently this way.

message 7: by Arctic (new)

Arctic Yay! another Clie user! and that's how I read Slaughterhouse-Five the first time as well. :) Ebooks are basicly the whole reason I got the Clie, five years ago now (!). I specifically wanted an mp3 player that would let me read books too. And now I read more books on it than listen to music. We should share libraries sometime, Nick. :)

I have several issues with the Kindle. No PDF support is a big one. Absence of wireless service for it where I live is another. The one thing I do like about it is the magazine/newspaper subscription option, though right now they only have about 5 publications total available for it.

message 8: by Susan (new)

Susan | 2 comments To be honest, I have more fun going in to bookstores and searching the shelves for that special book than I do actually reading the book! I just love the feel of a book in my hand, the smell of a book-I don't think I would enjoy replacing the experience with an electronic device. I did look at the Kindle on Amazon, though. If I had money for stuff like that I might try it just for fun, but I don't think it would "stick' with me.

message 9: by Jason (new)

Jason I think its very interesting that a couple people read Vonnegut on a "Clie". In Vonnegut's last book, he starts chapter six by saying:

"I have been called a luddite and I welcome it."

A luddite is someone who is basically anti-technoloy except when its beneficial AND necessary. For example a luddite doesn't buy the newest big-screen TV because overall the harm it does to his mind, the environment, and to society, is probably more than any good it does. You can get news on a radio or a newspaper, or if you must, a computer.

To read someone like Vonnegut on a Clie is to disregard the political, social, and asthetic values that fueled his writing.

It would be kind of like eating a big steak while reading "The Jungle".

But Vonnegut isn't just some crazy eccentric. He is saying that literature is still one of the few things that our crazy, hyper-active world of electronic instant gratification hasn't taken over.

Lastly, what would some of the great Western writers have though of the "kindle" or "clie"?
(I would ask about other cultures but I haven't studied many other traditions, but I'm starting too.)

What would Emerson have thought? Thoreau? Poe? Shakespeare? Moliere? Plath? Wharton? Swift? Kafka? Aristotle? Rosseau? Fitzergald? Tolkein? Steinbeck? Austen? Orwell? Huxley?

I think its pretty safe to say it wouldn't have sold well with them.

message 10: by Jason (new)

Jason I forgot to mention one exception, that I agree with Ajanta above, that if books are rare or hard to get then one of those things might be necessary.

message 11: by Ed (new)

Ed | 237 comments Mod
Tell me more about the Clie..sounds interesting.

message 12: by Nick (new)

Nick (nickqueen) I have all sorts of books on my Clie, all for Isilo, which is the best book reader in my opinion. Yay for the Clie. Which model do you have? I have the TJ37 and my favorite feature, besides the ebook reader, is syncing wirelessly. I convert a book over to Isilo, click to install it and sync while I finish getting ready for bed. It is there waiting when I get under the covers all wirelessly! I'm spoiled!

message 13: by Nick (new)

Nick (nickqueen) Here is a link to a review of mine:


message 14: by Arctic (new)

Arctic I jumped the gun and got the TJ35. I kind of wish I had waited and gotten the TJ37 just for the wireless capabilities, but the TJ35 does the trick well enough for me, and I was able to pick up a one-piece USB cord for it that isn't too much of a hassle to use. The three piece sync/charge cord with splitter combo that came with it really annoyed me. Had to replace it right away.

With wireless though, I bet you can go grab a Gutenberg text whenever you want. Lucky duck. I generally have to download it, convert it to a pdf and then transfer it.

And as for Vonnegut, the man was a genius in many respects, but I can't say I agreed with him on absolutely everything. I do agree that the situational irony is definitely there, I just don't think it's necessarily sacrilegious, or at least it's no worse than discussing Vonnegut on an internet forum. Always glad to meet another Vonnegut fan though; thanks for sharing your thoughts.

message 15: by Lulu (new)

Lulu | 2 comments I love gadgets too - how else would I have found all of you without a computer!? - but...for me, a gadget can't replace (yet) the feel of handling a real book with the new book (or library book) smell, with an uncracked spine (or a dog-eared, splayed-spine paperback), with the ability to always be powered up, 'online', connected and available.

So maybe I shouldn't have joined this thread. I'm not saying...I'm just saying.

message 16: by Jason (new)

Jason That's a good point. I too am a victim of the irony, but someone had to point it out.

Good to "meet" you too. By the way, I see you are from Alaska. I just read Into the Wild and I liked the descriptions of Alaska a lot. Have you read it?

message 17: by Rob (new)

Rob | 5 comments actually, I think Aristotle would love all these high-tech devices. It's a known fact that he loved tinkering and inventing. He invented a sort of automated page-turning machine, that used a sort-of water-wheel and palm leaves to automatically turn the pages of his books, so he didn't have to. People called him crazy, but he was just ahead of his time ;)

message 18: by Ed (new)

Ed | 237 comments Mod
Are these still sold? Available..I thought I read somewhere that sony wasn 't making them???

message 19: by [deleted user] (new)

I didn't know anything about eBooks or eReading until the spring of 2005. I'm a writer and had submitted my novel "A Cobweb on the Soul" to [http://www.epress-online.com] At the time, they were only an eBook publisher. I was fascinated with this new technology! The Editor-in-Chief fed me all kinds of information--I'm a quick study--and I jumped into the world of eBooks. I purchased my first eBookwise.

The eBookwise [http://www.ebookwise.com/servlet/mw?t...]
is so inexpensive. Only $139.95, and this device comes with a pre-installed 64 Megabyte SmartMedia Card, dramatically increasing the storage capability of the eBookwise-1150.

I have read almost exclusively from my eBookwise since that time. In fact, it now contains 32 books, 24 of which I've read.

My eBookwise is back-lit so I can read in bed at night without disturbing anyone. It holds a charge for about 15 hours of reading, and recharges in about 30 minutes.

I'm now also the the lead editor at ePress-online for our Mystery and U.S. Historical divisions. I download subissions to my eBookwise to evaluate for a "go-no go" vote for publication.

Interestingly, after hearing my plea that a writer "hungers" to hold his "baby" in his hands, the Editor-in-Chief also agreed to launch a print version of most of their books. However, one must be careful what one complains about. That is my job too. I format our books for print and upload to several distribution channels.

We at epress-online have a stable of great reading. Check it out!


message 20: by Malina (new)

Malina (allyall) | 1 comments Books are an escape for me. I also find reading harder on a computer. There is also the whole energy sucking power of the computer, it isn't refreshing to cuddle up to a computer. Plus the price & breakability of such devices. I do like the ability to get rare books thru things like the gutenburg project, but have a much easier time reading them if I print them out. Paper has its weaknesses too, but for now, I prefer real paper books.

message 21: by Atomicgirl (new)

Atomicgirl | 12 comments Our local public library system offers ebooks to download to your PC. I haven't taken advantage of it, mostly because I like the portability of a book.

I can't see buying a handheld device to read ebooks because of the expense.

message 22: by Debra (new)

Debra (fercharthur) | 2 comments A book is still a book, no matter the format it comes in. The e-versions of my two novels are no less than their print counterparts. They are the exact same text. When downloaded to my eBookwise1150 reader and I hold the device in my hand, I'm still holding a book. My pleasure in reading isn't diminished by the format of the book. Guess I'm more addicted to writing than books, then, huh?

I hope Kindle succeeds and comes down in price. Wish it had a backlight like my eBookwise1150, though. Those you can read in the dark. The electronic ink is different and you would need another light source for reading after dark. Still, it's getting people to notice e-publishing. And if more people became interested it would lose more of its second-class stigma.

Happy reading!

message 23: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (moanalisa) No, I'd prefer to hold a book in my hand. I think it's easier on the eyes. I stare at a computer screen all day at work, I DON"T want to use one for my favorite past time. As Ray Bradbury says in Fahrenheit 451--Books smell like spices from a foreign land. And they do!

message 24: by Meg (new)

Meg (megvt) | 100 comments I love gadgets. I would love a Kindle but am waiting for the price to go down, which, eventually it should. I love the idea of downloading books wirelessly and being able to take them with me anywhere. I use my IPOD for that person, but then I can only listen to books. I look at Kindle as the written form of the IPOD.

However, I think the Kindle is amazing for the elderly. You can change the font, they can read easily, be current and not have to carry something heavy around.

message 25: by Peanut (new)

Peanut I prefer the actual book. During the winter I'm good with audiobooks in the car.

But I don't like to read on the computer or any other type of gadget.

message 26: by Ed (new)

Ed | 237 comments Mod
I agree on the price...if the price went down I think it might be worth trying....the ability to download makes sense. Seems incredible except the price is just too high. I would be scared of losing it.

message 27: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl (chaoscat60) | 37 comments I want a kindle too, especially for my various weekend trips, it's would be better than carrying a few books. They just have to come down in price to justify it for me.

message 28: by Andrea (new)

Andrea Reading on a computer would probably give me migraines. Vonnegut, by the way, said something in Timequake about books in their paper form, though I'm too lazy to go look it up.

But nothing will ever replace the life a book takes on for me, not just the story, but the markings in the book, how worn the cover is, the feel of it in your hands.

Not the least bit interested in reading electronic media. I'm not even all that interested in doing it on the computer, I get that energy suck and have to walk away.

message 29: by Andrea (new)

Andrea Oh, and one last thought. Cuddling up with the family, books in hand and piled up like puppies. I just can't see it on a little electronic device. It isn't the same if my son has is Nintendo or something.

message 30: by Liz (new)

Liz (hissheep) Ed wrote: "I watched on the Amazon website the ad for the Kindle...it's an electronic book reader..can download books to it. Looks great but the cost is too high for me. What do others think? I like the wi..."

Well, it might take me longer than most of you since I only recently got used to books on CD without feeling that I was "cheating". But I still like the feel of a book in my hands ... call me old-fashioned!

message 31: by Jim (last edited Jan 14, 2009 10:14AM) (new)

Jim | 41 comments I love listening to books on CD and on smaller devices

although I love books in my hand and like the convenience to reread something that I don't understand/really like/find profound, I think that the less trees cut down, the better for the environment and future generations
I don't want my Daughter/her kids living in a LA BLADE RUNNER WORLD

message 32: by Tressa (last edited Jan 14, 2009 06:12PM) (new)

Tressa  (moanalisa) I love reading AND listening to audio books. I'm a visual person and follow a book better than an audio, so I usually leave audios for books I've already read but want to experience again.

I'm listening to Ender's Game right now and it is sooo wonderful. There's not just one person reading the entire book. Harlan Ellison even supplies one of the voices.

message 33: by Khulood (new)

Khulood although I'm a very technical person (work in IT), but I wouldn't give up curling with a book for anything out there.. there is a special thing about books! you read it, you turn pages feeling the texture of the paper.. I couldn't give that up :)

to me, a book is a book that you can read, flip through, take to bed, carry around without worrying about the battery dying.

message 34: by Christy (new)

Christy Stewart (christyleighstewart) I just got an EZ reader, it's very cute.

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