I’ve had it for a couple of weeks now, and used it for a variety of things.
The main one was a semi-duvet day I had last Sunday almost entirely unrelated to the stag-do in the pub the night before. Feeling slightly under the weather and unable to face up to some of the more physical demands facing me, I spent the day on the sofa in my dressing-gown with an e-book.
The e-ink the Kindle uses is very weird. The resolution and the black and white display reminds me of our family Atari’s hi-res black and white monitor from the mid-90s. The thing is very very light, pretty simple to use, very easy to read.
On Sunday, I read pretty much all of Monstrous Regiment. And I coped. It felt a bit weird. Terry Pratchett’s lovely use of footnotes didn’t work very well – they were displayed as end notes and required you to click on them to read them, which destroyed the flow a bit in a way you don’t have when it’s just a case of flicking your eye to the bottom of the page.
I also got to play a little with some of the other options, including subscribing to Informed Traveller Magazine (and then rapidly unsubscribing because the content was pretty lousy) and also buying an e-copy of The Independent as a one off just to see what it was like. It was quite good for comment, but had almost no use at all.
I think it’s going to be an excellent solution to the problem of taking enough books on holiday. Will they let me use it on a plane?
It won’t entirely replace actual books as half of the titles I’ve bought are things I know other members of my family will want to read that I’ve bought on paper.
I was half-wondering to what extent it would be possible to use it for committees or for paperless working at conferences. I don’t think this is going to fly terribly well, having had a brief try this afternoon at an informal meeting. Lots of people were intrigued by the device and wanted a bit of a play. But it wasn’t great for working with. You can’t juggle two documents at once (eg an agenda and the paper you are working with.) It completely reworks pagination, which means finding the same reference as someone else is tricky. And it seemed not to work at all well with MS Word tables, which feature rather a lot in committee papers.
But it’s absolutely fine for leisure reading.