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Old 07-15-2008, 01:27 PM   #1
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After the New wears off

I am just curious for the Kindle owners, How many of you still use the extra features outside of just Reading?? Do you find that you still highlight and look up words, Or make notes as you are reading?? How about Wikipedia. After alot of looking around the web it seems a lot of long term reviews seem to say that all the extras lose the wow factor.

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Old 07-15-2008, 01:36 PM   #2
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I don't use the basic browser very often. I usually have a laptop with me, so it's rare that I need it. I've never been a big Wikipedia user so I'm using it no more than I did before. I do like having the option available to use either in a pinch.

Some years ago I was going to a meeting and I'd walked out without the address and contact information. I didn't have my laptop with me but I had my palm with a wi-fi card. It was very helpful to be able to do a (very slow) search online to find the information I needed. I feel that way about the Kindle browser and Wikipedia.

I use Whispernet daily for my subscriptions. I use the dictionary look-up and search features often. I'm actually just starting to play with the mp3 player (in the process of converting some music to mp3 as we speak... write).

One of my main reasons for going with the Kindle was the depth of Amazon's catalog and the price of the books. That is still a major factor for me. I'm still very happy with my purchase.
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Old 07-15-2008, 01:36 PM   #3
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I've had my Kindle since the beginning of December.

Highlighting I use all the time. Just used it a few minutes ago.

I occasionally add notes, often to summarize what I highlight, less frequently on its own.

I use the dictionary feature, oh, maybe once or twice a week on average. It all depends on what I am reading. The weekly count would be highly skewed, but I still find it worthwhile.

For Wikipedia, again, it depends on reading material. If I am doing Biblical study I will use it to get historical background on ancient cities, sites, people, etc. I have also used it when reading a newspaper if a particular company or product jumps out at me and I desire more background. I would say I use that function less than once a week, maybe once every two weeks.

The one thing that I use less frequently now than in the beginning is the experimental web browser. Part of this is due to the fact that Feedbooks has created those personalized newspaper feeds directly to the Kindle, so I no longer bother to check blogs and such via the browser. I just have my Feedbook paper transmit the RSS feeds to me directly.

I use the mp3 player a lot when reading to drown out background noise. I am very susceptible to being distracted audibly. A TV in the room where I am trying to read is madness for me, so I love to use the mp3 function for some good reading music.

Last edited by iamnohs; 07-15-2008 at 01:39 PM.
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Old 07-15-2008, 02:02 PM   #4
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We never use the web browsing feature since we spend lots of time at our Mac computers. We order via Whispernet almost exclusively.

The Kindle is used exclusively for reading in our house and we bought it just for that.

Daffy4U's reason for buying a Kindle-depth of catalog-was a primary consideration as was ease of use and type size adjustment.

The Kindle is a real blessing to someone with physical limitations that involve grasping and page turning.
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Old 07-15-2008, 02:13 PM   #5
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I've used the browser once or twice in a pinch when the battery on my smartphone was low. I avoid it generally since it really is rather tedious. I use dictionary and Wikipedia fairly frequently depending on what I'm reading. I would say I use it just as often now as I did when I first got the Kindle back in November. I don't use annotation and notes that much since I'm reading mostly fiction for pleasure at the moment. I'd prefer annotation to work more like the iLiad if I were doing more academic reading.
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Old 07-15-2008, 02:22 PM   #6
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I bought it, and use it, mostly for books. But it *is* nice to quickly get the weather, to know if I should leave the windows open overnight or shut them to keep the rain out. And it's nice to check the front page of news (msnbc.com) to make sure the world is still out there and not blown up, if I'm having a lazy weekend and not using my mac at all.
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Old 07-15-2008, 02:47 PM   #7
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I forgot to add, I absolutely LOVE being able to download samples on whim. It's helping be curb my desire to buy everything I have even the least bit of interest in.

I have a backlog of books already including one 15+ book series. I like having the samples to help me decide if I really want to buy that particular book or as a reminder that I really want to buy that book.

I have not purchased a book since July 6th (pretty good for me).
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Old 07-15-2008, 02:52 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by daffy4u View Post
I forgot to add, I absolutely LOVE being able to download samples on whim. It's helping be curb my desire to buy everything I have even the least bit of interest in.

I have a backlog of books already including one 15+ book series. I like having the samples to help me decide if I really want to buy that particular book or as a reminder that I really want to buy that book.

I have not purchased a book since July 6th (pretty good for me).
That wouldnt happen to be the Dr. Alan Gregory Series by Stephen White would it?
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Old 07-15-2008, 02:54 PM   #9
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My Kindle was bought for reading books rather than as a general purpose mobile Internet device. Therefore, my use of these features is related to the primary purpose.
  • Browser: I played with the experimental browser for a bit but felt it was so crippled that I wasn't interested in playing further. As more and more sites develop "mobile" web presentation, I might revisit this in the future. Since I'm on my laptop most of the time and have an air card, I can get online with a full-function browser rather than having to resort to the primitive one built into the Kindle.
  • Browser exception: I use the catalogs (officially called download guides) from Feedbooks and MobileRead. These books use the underlying browser to allow you to download a MobiPocket-formatted book directly to the Kindle or to download a more recent version of the guide.
  • Amazon store: I use the Whispernet connection to visit the Amazon store every couple of days. I check out the Kindle Daily Post, reading back to the last time I looked, to see if any free or deeply discounted deals have been announced. I tend to "buy" and select samples from my PC, so when I turn on the Whispernet connection, that content is transmitted to my Kindle. I download Amazon books to the PC when I'm outside of the US and need to use the fall-back process of transferring books through the PC.
  • Highlighting: All the time. I've been collecting some documentation for feedback on poorly built books -- particularly formatting problems in those in "Topaz" format.
  • Notes: on occasion. A neat trick is that you can open the "My Clippings" book and add a note in it, which gives you an easy notepad or piece of scratch paper to scribble a note on -- which is related to no book at all.
  • Dictionary: infrequently. But I haven't figured out how to go from entry to entry in the dictionary, which is a way I like to use the dictionary.
  • Search Wikipedia: infrequently. It's easier to do that with my PC and since I keep the antenna turned off most of the time, it's more of a nuisance to have have to turn it on to run the search.
In summary, I like having the easy network access -- without even having to log into a WiFi network -- for downloading books. It's not required, but it's convenient.

I could be happy with a Sony or other eBook reader that doesn't have the network capability -- as long as I had the Amazon store available. IMNSHO: One of the best things Amazon could do would be to set up additional stores for BBeB, MobiPocket, and ePub books and maybe others. And other online bookstores could do something similar. Then regardless of which device you owned, you could shop at your favorite online book seller. I'd like to see it possible for other sellers to offer Kindle-specific formats. Amazon could restrict direct delivery from other sellers if they wanted, positioning the Amazon Kindle and the Amazon Store as the best combination, but allowing customers to choose their device and supplier.
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Old 07-15-2008, 03:02 PM   #10
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I could be happy with a Sony or other eBook reader that doesn't have the network capability -- as long as I had the Amazon store available. IMNSHO: One of the best things Amazon could do would be to set up additional stores for BBeB, MobiPocket, and ePub books and maybe others. And other online bookstores could do something similar. Then regardless of which device you owned, you could shop at your favorite online book seller. I'd like to see it possible for other sellers to offer Kindle-specific formats. Amazon could restrict direct delivery from other sellers if they wanted, positioning the Amazon Kindle and the Amazon Store as the best combination, but allowing customers to choose their device and supplier.
Could we like mass email this out to every ebook publisher, retailer, and device manufacturer in the World?

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Old 07-15-2008, 03:03 PM   #11
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That wouldnt happen to be the Dr. Alan Gregory Series by Stephen White would it?
Nope. It's the "In Death" series by J.D. Robb. My count was a bit off. There are currently 31 books in this series. Whew!

Right now I read one in the series, then read 2 books from other authors and then go back to the series.
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Old 07-15-2008, 03:06 PM   #12
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Nope. It's the "In Death" series by J.D. Robb. My count was a bit off. There are currently 31 books in this series. Whew!

Right now I read one in the series, then read 2 books from other authors and then go back to the series.
Man that was my 2nd guess, 31 would be a challenge for me to get thru. Once I start a series I dont stop until I am done with it. I have spent the last week reading the Twilight series, Waiting on book 4.
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Old 07-15-2008, 03:13 PM   #13
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Man that was my 2nd guess, 31 would be a challenge for me to get thru. Once I start a series I dont stop until I am done with it. I have spent the last week reading the Twilight series, Waiting on book 4.
That's how I would normally read a series as well but maybe this one hasn't grabbed me as hard (though I am enjoying it).
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Old 07-15-2008, 03:55 PM   #14
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IMNSHO: One of the best things Amazon could do would be to set up additional stores for BBeB, MobiPocket, and ePub books and maybe others.
Even better would be for the industry to standarize on one format. What benefit are all these various formats bringing anyway? I would bet removing all the confusion from having all these formats would do more to stimulate the ebook space than trying to trick customers with some silly proprietary format scheme.

To the topic I use the Kindle strickly as an ereader 99% of the time. I get my newspaper and a free blog via whispernet so I do like that feature. General web browsing is just too painfull on eInk so I only use it as a last resort. I find the built in dictionary a bit limited, the full OED would be nice. I don't use the music player at all. The sould quality is not that great and I don't really listen to music away from my pc anyway.
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Old 07-15-2008, 04:35 PM   #15
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I have had the Kindle for a couple of months now, and I use the browser daily. Mainly the preconfigured bookmarks (MSNBC, WeatherUnderground, etc.)

I also appreciate the almost immediate update of a couple of blogs I subscribe to, and the weekly/monthly updates to a couple of magazines I subscribe to.

I have used nownow a few times, when I was to busy to research something myself on the web.

I also use the Mobipocket guide (from MobileRead!) and Feedbooks Kindle Download Guide.

I really don't see the "wow" features ever going to go out of use for me, and I look forward to additional improvements on them.

I also dread the thought of Amazon deciding to charge for the use of the basic browser. But if they add some improvements to the service, it may well be worth it.
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