February 15, 2012
I just bought one. I don't have my library any more, and I find there are some of them I want to reread. A while back I looked, and the ones I remember fondly are available for download for the Kindle.
So just now I went to the store and bought one.
It connected to my LAN very easily, and with it I can connect to my web page hosted on the Qube. But I can't get outside of there, and I'm not just sure why. If it can use the LAN then it means the Wifi connection is good, and it means it got assigned an IP via DHCP. If it can't get beyond that, then it means it doesn't know what to use as a gateway. I thought I had Railgun (the Wifi hub) set up to announce that properly, but maybe not.
Unfortunately, I can't find any frame in the Kindle where I can look to see what TCP/IP setup it's using. The Kindle is supposed to be for non-technical users, and likely they don't want to confuse them. But I need to see what Railgun told it.
It's charging now, and later I'll dig into the usermanual (which is on the Kindle itself) and see what it says about connection problems.
UPDATE: I'm sure that's the problem. I can't find any place in Railgun's setup frame where I specify the gateway. And I remember that when I set up Saten (the Slate) I had to manually set up the gateway rather than rely on what Railgun said.
I guess I need to hit the Railgun manual.
UPDATE: All fixed and working. I found a place in the Fire itself where I could manually enter all the TCP/IP information. I just bought a book and downloaded it.
Which is a bit confusing. I think Amazon has my old, now defunct, credit card number. I don't think they have the new one. But the purchase went through fine. Who did they charge? I think maybe I should look at my BankOfAmerica account and see if there is a charge from Amazon.
Posted by: gaiaswill at February 15, 2012 01:24 PM (ar9uP)
Crunchyroll works ok on Fire, but I need to take screencaps for blogging, and I'm too lazy to investigate a good capper (e.g. shake-triggered).
Another thing is, Crunchy does not keep streams forever. I still need to download what I stream or buy on medai.
Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at February 15, 2012 01:45 PM (G2mwb)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 15, 2012 01:54 PM (+rSRq)
Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at February 15, 2012 02:07 PM (G2mwb)
I'm only using it for MouPai right now (an abbreviation that doesn't exactly flow off the tongue...), but I've thought about finding out just how horrible Steel Angel Kurumi Zero was.
Posted by: J Greely at February 15, 2012 02:16 PM (fpXGN)
Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at February 15, 2012 02:31 PM (G2mwb)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 15, 2012 03:08 PM (+rSRq)
It really is pretty astounding that this thing can be sold for only $200.
This is a bit like a game console, I suspect. The real money for those is in the games. Or like a cell phone, where the real money is in usage fees. Game consoles and cell phones are routinely sold at a loss.
Since the Kindle is pretty much a slave to Amazon's electronic store, the real money is in selling books and music and games for it. So I wouldn't be surprised if Amazon is breaking even on these, or maybe even losing a bit on each one they sell.
Especially when they're sold through retail outlets, like the one I just bought from Fred Meyer. Maybe the ones Amazon sells directly from their web site are slightly profitable, but I bet they lost a lot on the one I just bought.
Because this is really well made. It's quite impressive.
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 15, 2012 03:14 PM (+rSRq)
Posted by: David at February 15, 2012 03:24 PM (+yn5x)
Though I don't have the complex home network setup you do, I had zero trouble getting it on-line.
It's a good solid product. And yeah, it's an amazing bit of technology, esp. for the sticker price of $99. Not quite "indistinguishable from magic", but only because I was born in the latter third of the 20th century and took a degree in electronics....
Posted by: atomic_fungus at February 15, 2012 03:31 PM (eZ7bU)
Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at February 15, 2012 04:04 PM (G2mwb)
Basically Fire is no iPad. But I only understood it now.
Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at February 15, 2012 04:09 PM (G2mwb)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 15, 2012 04:26 PM (+rSRq)
Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at February 15, 2012 05:05 PM (G2mwb)
I'm still waiting for screen improvements, but the Kindles are cheap enough now that I'm likely to buy one while I'm waiting.
Posted by: Pixy Misa at February 15, 2012 08:16 PM (PiXy!)
It actually looks quite nice, and the characters are large and well formed, at least on the book I just got. It was originally a paperback, but the Kindle's screen is larger yet, so it's easy to read for and old guy like me whose eyes are not as good as they used to be.
On the other hand, when I loaded Chizumatic it was almost impossible to read. They resized it to fit the screen, which in portrait mode is only 600 pixels wide. (You can click on it to blow it up, and you can scroll it back and forth, but even then it was a bit tough.)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 15, 2012 09:17 PM (+rSRq)
I got a Kindle Touch early this year and have enjoyed reading a few books on it. The whole e-ink thing is a dream to read. I think it's great that books like Peopleware are now available in an electronic format, though it seems like roughly half the books I want to read aren't available. Strange. Or perhaps I have obscure taste.
How is the color screen for reading? It seems like it would wear on my eyes... but I have some sensitivity in that area that other folks don't seem to have.
Posted by: Mark at February 15, 2012 09:20 PM (i24Ag)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 15, 2012 09:21 PM (+rSRq)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 15, 2012 09:24 PM (+rSRq)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 15, 2012 09:25 PM (+rSRq)
Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at February 15, 2012 09:28 PM (G2mwb)
Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at February 15, 2012 09:28 PM (G2mwb)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 15, 2012 10:30 PM (+rSRq)
That said, yeah, it's exactly like the console business model, on overdrive.
I'd like one... but, I can't really justify it right now. To be honest, I've really got my eyes on the bow wave of Win8 devices I keep hearing about. If I can get a small-but-full-powered laptop that can serve as my primary machine, but has a form factor and low-power mode that allows it to serve as a decent tablet, then I don't need to keep up with and replace two devices. I don't mind a tablet-sized screen and keyboard so much, because it ideally would have several ports that I could use to hang "real" ones off of while at a desk.
Posted by: BigD at February 16, 2012 08:36 AM (qLkdZ)
Of course, it's part of their business plan to make it as easy and convenient as they can to buy stuff, and it's working on me. I just bought my second book.
I'm going to have to be careful about this. I remember how I used to be in book stores.
The billing is all straightened out, and I've gotten payment acknowledgements for both books.
I'm a bit surprised at the pricing, however. The first book was $5. The second one was $6. It only would have cost about $2 more for each to get paper copies. (Which I don't want, because I have no room for them. But anyway...)
There's very little overhead cost for electronic distribution. No warehousing, no printing cost, no money gambled on buying units which don't sell. An electronic copy of a book gets created microseconds after it's ordered, and it's made of electrons.
There's nontrivial infrastructure for Amazon itself, in creating all the computer systems which do this, not to mention selling the Kindle at a loss, and that's all got to be paid for. But when I bought these, I got told that the price was set by the publisher, and it looks like they're trying to set the price high enough so that it doesn't threaten their dead-tree book business.
They're just like the other old-wave information distribution companies (e.g. RIAA, MPAA) who don't understand that their old business is rapidly becoming obsolete.
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 16, 2012 12:22 PM (+rSRq)
Someone needs to teach them the difference between "cost" and "value", and Amazon seems to be taking the lead. Baen seems to be the only publisher with a firm grasp of the concept, and as a result I often buy their printed books from Amazon and DRM-free ebooks directly from their site. (not to mention the Baen Free Library, which padded out my Kindle and Sony Reader nicely...)
Posted by: J Greely at February 16, 2012 01:32 PM (2XtN5)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 16, 2012 05:01 PM (+rSRq)
Posted by: ubu at February 16, 2012 05:22 PM (GfCSm)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 16, 2012 05:25 PM (+rSRq)
Terrible issue to have, isn't it?
As for Kindles, I recently gained access to one; my cousin loaned nii-san one and he had me do the setup and figure it out so I could explain it to him. I was interested to see that when I re-registered it under my name/credit card, all the books she had bought stayed with it instead of being dumped. I was not able to get a Baen ebook to load properly from Lyar though, even though it was the Kindle version. Not sure what I did wrong.
Posted by: ubu at February 16, 2012 05:44 PM (GfCSm)
As with J. Greely, I'm a huge fan of Baen and their approach to drm-free books widely and cheaply distributed.
Posted by: David at February 16, 2012 07:00 PM (Kn54v)
Posted by: ubu at February 16, 2012 08:19 PM (GfCSm)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 16, 2012 08:30 PM (+rSRq)
I must say, the battery life is impressive. On a single charge I read the entire first book, and I'm probably a third of the way through the second one, and I also have been doing other kinds of messing around, including some web browsing, and the battery still shows 26%.
I'm planning to keep using it until it complains, because it's good for lithium batteries to run through a full charge and discharge cycle once when new.
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 16, 2012 08:33 PM (+rSRq)
It is expensive to convert books with complex formatting requirements and interior art, but those are easily justifiable to potential customers. Charging the same price for an SF novel from 1972 as one from 2012 is just "we have expensive offices in Manhattan". And Amazon is delighted to point out that it's Random House, et al, who insist on those prices.
Posted by: J Greely at February 16, 2012 10:05 PM (2XtN5)
Posted by: metaphysician at February 17, 2012 07:31 AM (3GCAl)
I'm a big e-book fan, but art and other "coffee table" books are the one category I still buy in paper. Trying to view those on any reasonable portable device seems to kind of defeat the whole purpose of the book: viewing large, colorful grpahics. Until the coffee-table itself can display color images of any desired size, I'll stick with paper for my nudie-books...errr, I mean my flower-garden books. Yeah, that's the story.
Off topic: FYI, I did see that Asobi ni Iku Yo is getting a domestic DVD/BD release in May, and it includes an OVA (which I've never seen).
Posted by: Dave Young at February 17, 2012 09:16 AM (DYR2Q)
Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at February 17, 2012 11:06 AM (G2mwb)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 17, 2012 11:24 AM (+rSRq)
Enclose all spoilers in spoiler tags:
[spoiler]your spoiler here[/spoiler]
Spoilers which are not properly tagged will be ruthlessly deleted on sight.
Also, I hate unsolicited suggestions and advice. (Even when you think you're being funny.)
At Chizumatic, we take pride in being incomplete, incorrect, inconsistent, and unfair. We do all of them deliberately.
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