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June, 2009:

Why I Love to Hate My Kindle

More strangers talk to me about my Kindle than anything else I have ever owned. The first question is “How do you like it?” I hate to say I love it because I have always loved paper books and don’t want to see them die. There is something about reading a book on a warm summer day or a cold winter night that just has a spiritual feel to it. You forget time and move into another world. I hate to say I love my Kindle but I do. But before I tell they why I like it I have to explain that it far from perfect.

At this point in my life, the Kindle is a great technology that meets my current need. As some of you know I took a new job at November Learning and have traveled by plane more in the last year than during the first 63 years of my life. When I started, I found that it was a great time to increase my reading since I had a lot of time sitting in airports and on planes. The bad part is that I carried at least two books or more books on every trip. I carried at least one book in my briefcase and one or more in my suitcase. They added a lot of weight to my journey.

What I hate it:

  • It isn’t the same “feel” as reading a book.
  • I can’t see the page numbers. It gives a percentage of the book I have read, but that is misleading do to index, glossary, and acknowledges pages that aren’t included.
  • You can’t loan it to others. I often loan and share my books. But unless I loan you my Kindle, I can’t loan you a book to read.
  • Not all books can be read on a Kindle. (I just bought two “real” books at the bookstore today.)
  • It is expensive. With the small discount on books, I don’t think I will ever make up what I paid for my Kindle.

Why I love it:

  • It is light and easy to carry.
  • Because it is light, it is easy to hold up in bed. Your arms and hands don’t get tired.
  • It is easy on your eyes. The “electronic paper” doesn’t seem to tire my eyes as much as when I read a book.
  • As soon as I buy a book on line it is delivered to my Kindle. I don’t have to wait for it to be shipped. I don’t have to go to the store.
  • I can shop for books using my Kindle. This is nice on the road. When I finish a book I ca just buy a new one. I don’t have to carry an “extra book” or settle for the “best” in the airport bookstore.
  • It looks cool.
  • And I have had conversations with a lot of people who would have never talked to me if I was reading a book.

I’ll continue to tell people I love books. And I’ll continue my secrete love affair with my Kindle.