Sorry for the screen issue with your Sony. It does look very artistic.
I'll let others help you with the book designing. One first attempt has been converting a dictionary for use with the Kindle. Too much for a first try.
Anyway, I'll try to help you with a few things. While you are waiting for your Kindle to arrive, I suggest you take a moment to read through Amazon's Kindle User Guide
as well as Brent Newhall's Fan Guide
for some tips and tricks not in the official guide. Brent has a free pdf version of his guide you can read.
I also would like to know about the formats that the Kindle reads.
Kindle (.azw), text (.txt), Mobi (.mobi*, .prc*)
MP3 music format (.mp3)
The following file formats can be converted via e-mail for viewing on Kindle:
Microsoft Word (.DOC)
Structured HTML (.HTML, .HTM) [the Kindle will read html files by changing the extension to .txt but it may not be pretty]
JPEG (.JPEG, .JPG) [you can load jpegs directly into the Kindle if you just want a gray scale photo album or to be used to create new screen savers]
GIF (.GIF) [the Kindle will save it's screen captures as .gif files]
My next order of business is RSS news! I am currently based overseas, so until I return to the states I don't get to take advantage of directly accessing information on my Kindle. I have fiddled around a bit with the Mobipocket Reader for PC and read on these forums about the RSS feature. Apparently there's a way to put the feeds on the Kindle? If this is the case, can it grab full articles?
Yes, you can put the feeds from MobiPocket Reader on your Kindle and yes it will grab full articles as well as pictures (my L.A. Times subscription doesn't have pictures). Here are the instructions I shared with someone about adding an RSS feed of the NYT (this is based on an XP computer, I haven't tried it on my Vista machine to see if there are any differences)
-Install the Desktop Reader here you can download from here:
-Do the dance of connecting your Kindle to the reader and have it recognized by the software
- Go to the New York Times and grab the RSS feed links to the sections you want
-In the Desktop reader software click on "eNews"
-At the top of the window click on "add eNews"
-Add the url for each feed you want (you have to do them one at a time)
-Once you have all the feeds loaded in, select all of the feeds and right click, choose "send" to either the Kindle or the SD card if you have one. NOTE: The send feature will send the files to the wrong part of the Kindle. The feed will be sent to the eBooks folder. You will need to drag and drop them into the "documents" folder.
-Disconnect your Kindle and you'll see each individual feed listed with all the stories that go with that feed.
-Every morning you'll have to sync the feeds to update them and do the whole connect the Kindle and drag drop thing again.
What will make my use of the Kindle the most smooth and pleasant experience possible without the EVDO network
As long as you have a computer with internet access, you're good to go. When I first received my Kindle, I was all about using the Whispernet to surf around on the basic web browser, experimenting with my internet email accounts and trying to set up Google Reader (didn't work). I'm over it now. I really only use Whispernet to download my books and subscriptions into my Kindle... that's it. I prefer to search for books to purchase on my computer.
Oh and the GPS is, isn't really GPS. It's just a cell tower triangulation
That's my 2 cents. Enjoy your Kindle!