Skip to main content

Kindle 2: Death Knell For Books?

kindle 2
This morning Amazon officially announced its second-generation e-book reader, the Kindle 2 (although leaked photographs of the device have been floating around the internet for some time now). All-in-all, the new Kindle is a modest step up from the first generation, introducing nothing too radical to the design or functionality but improving the device in a variety of incremental ways.
So, what does the new Kindle mean for those of us who still like to curl up with a good book? Be it an action packed mystery or a spine chilling horror story or even a good old fashioned romance novel, nothing quite compares to the feel of turning the pages of a well written book. I'll admit, when I first stumbled across the Kindle some time ago, my reactions ranged from 'This monstrosity replacing my precious paperbacks?' to 'Just one more gadget to lug around which I'll never use'.

However, I've recently started to change my mind (I'll admit that I have never used one of these devices myself). First of all, e-books mean that I always have reading material at hand. I can carry a hundred books instead of just one. It is possible to get the latest bestsellers at much lower prices thanks to the Amazon Kindle store. If you read public domain works, the choice is increased manifold (and much cheaper too!). With the introduction of E-Ink technology and better screens, it is also a lot easier on the eyes compared to smart phone or laptop screens. As much as I like the feel of a book in my hands, I cannot ignore the number of trees that are cut down each year to create books and which can be saved if I read electronically.

As usual, there are caveats. Many of the above pros are moot for anyone living outside the US and EU. Books have to be purchased online and downloaded to the device. While Wi-Fi is ubiquitous in many cities States side, it is not so for most people. It might be the next best thing since sliced bread, but I'd like to see someone actually carry and use it on our DTC buses!

Quite ambitiously, the Kindle hopes to do to books what the iPod did to music. For now, the printed word still reigns supreme...but only for now.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Why Don’t We Raise Our Sons like We Do Our Daughters?

This post originally appeard in Women's Web: Why Don’t We Raise Our Sons like We Do Our Daughters?

One of the hot button topics right now in Indian media is the safety of women – or rather how our country doesn't really care about half its population. From rape, sexual assault, harassment (in streets, public transport, nearly every public place) to violence perpetrated on women, Indians are finally getting around to discussing taboo topics.
One refrain that caught my eye throughout these debates – both online and off – is the fact that the reaction of the majority of Indians is the same: girls should stay at home, not go out after dark, dress appropriately and so on if they want to stay safe. No one seems to bat an eyelid when laying down these precautions for women. Except that the reality is women would be far safer if all the men simply DID NOT RAPE or HARASS any person that looks remotely female. No one has to stay at home and become a hermit! That got me thinking further. F…

One Step Up

Diya
Diya forced herself to relax while the attendant spread a mud pack on her face. She’d been nervous all week thinking about today. This was totally unlike the little beauty parlour she went to every month for eyebrow threading and the occasional haircut. No, this was a spa and they didn't just cut hair here. They styled it. And that was only the beginning of all the treatments a woman could get done. Normally she would have been too intimidated to even set foot inside, let alone enquire about the prices which she was sure would be too high for her budget.

But this visit was a gift from her dear mother for her 30th birthday. Luckily for her, the gift card was for a particular package which meant she would not be gaping like a fool at the exorbitant rates. Once again, Diya tried to relax telling herself that these women were being paid by her. She employed them and as much as she was sure they were secretly laughing at her naiveté, Diya wasn’t the one working for a living. But de…