Monday, 2 March 2009

Kindle vs. real books

Apparently, the Kindle is going to change the way people read and buy books. I have mixed feelings about this.
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Just in case you don't know what I am talking about - let me explain....The Kindle (1 & 2) are wireless reading devices. Amazon brought out the Kindle a while ago and has recently released the Kindle 2. You can download books, magazines, newspapers, word documents and even blogs onto a Kindle. >
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While a Kindle definitely takes up alot less space than a book (especially the Kindle 2 which is only 1/3 of an inch wide and can hold up to 1500 books) and allows you download a book in under 60 seconds - I still dont know if I am ready to give up buying "real" books in favour of electronic books.
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The thought of electronic books taking over the world makes me sad. I love the feeling of real paper. I love the smell of books, especially old ones. I also love the look of books on a bookshelf......
But even I can not deny that the Kindle could become a super popular item. Plus, It will probably save trees, is totally perfect for travel and may encourage reluctant readers to read more.
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Personally, I dont think I will be buying a Kindle anytime soon. Long live "real" books :)
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What do you think?
Will you be getting one? Do you have one already?

* Click HERE to read more about the Kindle 2

35 comments:

  1. I think it's a cute idea, and I would consider getting one for when I go on trips etc. It's handy too, because it's so small it'll fit easily into my handbag.

    But I will never give up buying books. There is nothing that can compare to the way it feels when you open a brand new book. Or the faded pages of an old one.

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  2. hmm... I'm not sure about this. I once had a PalmPilot (remember those)? and hardly used it, coz i love writing... so i still carry a small diary and note book. I think I will always buy books... and the smell of a new book *something about it!

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  3. Ha even my Mom knows about this, so it's definitely coming in a big way! My friend has one and loves it for travelling. With 36 hour trips between Denver (where she lives) and CT (her hometown) it's certainly very useful to her. Werner reads about 3 books per week when he has the time, so for him too I think it could be valuable. Me? I think "nah, I love a real book" but I suspect it's one of those things where once you try it, you never look back. We'll see!

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  4. I don't like this. I think the charm in a good book is being able to bend it, dog ear it, read it upside down and not have to charge it. There's something special about REAL pages, but then again maybe I'm just a snob.

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  5. I must say, I still love real books, that you can underline and hold and smell. But the Kindle will definitely have it's benefits for busy people, travelers, etc. But what happens when the battery dies and you've lost your charger or something? Or it gets wet? Or there's a problem and you can't download your fav book? Technology is great, but always comes with problems too. I'll stick to books for now.

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  6. There is nothing better than real books! I am a firm believer in swapping books or buying at second hand books stores and i love the feel and look and just everything about it. Electronics can make life easy but a hard little machine isnt going to make me as happy as a touchy feely book :) but thats just me! lol happy to see you back!

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  7. I am torn between the romanticism of the tactile experience of books, the feel, smell etc and the features, features, features of an e-book reader such as the Kindle.

    I would love a Kindle – saw Oprah rant & rave about it just last week. It is unfortunately not available in South Africa (nor anywhere outside the US it seems). The Sony Reader is available in SA, but unlike the Kindle – one cannot download books directly, as I understand. One still needs a computer.

    Bookshelves stuffed with books, makes a house look more homey instantly but badly deforested land looks desolate. I can go on and on about the advantages and disadvantages of both. Cheaper books may sway the scales for me favouring an e-book in the end I think.

    Was the uptake of this technology really that big in countries where it is available though?

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  8. I'm definitely a fan f anythig that might reduce clutter, I actually prefer having mp3s and not getting cds (like itunes) as I find they just take up space and once it's on my ipod then I never use it again...

    So a kindle would be fantastic to save space on my bookshelf, and it would really be awesome for all the million pdfs I read... but I don't know, there is something about curling up in bed with a book...

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  9. i have mixed feelings about this as well. I want to try it- but I LOVE my books!!!

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  10. Not for me. The kindle will never recreate the smell of lots of old books together in a library or the tattered child-hood favourites we still hang onto. As for saving trees, join a book club, buy secondhand books or visit the library ;-)

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  11. Hmm, I agree with you, I love lying in bed reading a book. But I could see myself buying one of those one day... when everyone else does...

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  12. No way.

    I can't do it. I look at my bookshelf, from my collection of dog-eared Harry Potters, to my Stephen King's "Hearts in Atlantis," and they are like dear friends to me.

    I'll second the idea that if you want to help the environment, buy secondhand, gather a group of friends who trade books amongst themselves...

    But I just can't do it yet.

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  13. Ya, agreed. There's something about a bookshelf full of books!

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  14. Not for me Brazen! I'm afraid I'm a huge hardcopy fan of music and books - everything. That texture, the feel and smell lets you engage with the story on a sensory level - thanks for letting us know though!

    cheers!

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  15. I think I prefer real books. It is a good "green" idea, but it makes me sad. I just love books.

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  16. there is just something about holding a book in your hands and turning the pages that shouldn't be replaced by technology. reading an actual book makes you feel more connected and introspective... i spend way too much time with technology as it is.. i don't want to turn my books into another form of technology!

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  17. it'll be real books all the way for me!

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  18. No electronic device will ever make me want to give up real books. I don't like reading books on my computer much less a small little screen like that. I spend all day at work staring at a screen and it hurts my eyes. Why would I do that for "fun"?

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  19. I love real books so much. I won't say I'll never have one of these - but I will hold out as long as possible.

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  20. I saw this on Oprah the other day, and I had the same mixed feelings as you. I'm a book person. I've worked in four different bookshops (one new, three 2nd-hand) and I can't go to sleep without reading first. My books are, for me, both stories/info AND objects of beauty and decor. I treat all my books very carefully and never crease the spine or bend the pages. Books that I've read multiple times still look brand-new. So giving all that up for a MACHINE seems so incredibly wrong! On the other hand, books are so dang expensive, so if it's cheaper in the long-run then it IS a good idea. I just don't know if I would be happy with it.

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  21. i think it is a great idea but I love flipping pages and seeing how much more I have left when I put my bookmark in! I wont be getting one:)

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  22. ive ALMOST been buying the kindle for about 3 years now... yes, its been out that long. im a tech junkie and i almost bought one when it was in beta. im not sure why i still havent pulled the trigger on it yet..

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  23. No kindle for me!!! Are they kidding??? What will I fill my spacious library with when I win the lottery????

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  24. It WOULD make travel a lot more easy!

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  25. I've never heard of a kindle before reading your blog! I hate reading things off my computer screen and prefer to print off and read large items so I don't think this will appeal to me. Give me a book with pages and a bookmark any day.

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  26. Wow, I didnt know this thing existed? It does sounds like a novel idea, and like you said, would definitely save trees, but I have to agree with you, I love real books. The smell, the texture, ...and turning pages :)

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  27. I'm still on the fence... I LOVE real books. I love displaying my books once I am done.. I love having them in my home...

    I also LOVE to go to the public library... Kindle kind of ruins the fun!
    It is very convenient though... Does it have a backlight yet? I heard it didn't...

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  28. No way!! I need to stick my nose into a new book and smell that print smell!!
    Hi! first-timer at your blog!!

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  29. I will continue to read "old fashioned" books. I think it is a great and green idea but I love the smell of books and find reading electronic versions of books not for me. Cheers!

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  30. NOOOOOO! Nothing can take away from holding a book, smelling it and feeling te texture of the cover and paper.

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  31. I got a Kindle for Christmas this year and I love love love it!

    I have to read every night before I go to bed and I go crazy if I finish one book and don't have a new one to read. Now I can just get a new book anytime I need one. Even if it is 2:00 in the morning!

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  32. Hey there, I just clicked over from Sassy's place. Nice blog you've got here!

    Funny, one of my favorite food blogs wrote a similar post yesterday and the response there were similar. I'm a total book whore and I just can't see myself making the switch. I don't even use the library because I like having (and keeping!) my own books ... even though I'm running out of space for them. I like the feel of a book too much and I don't think I would enjoy reading off a screen for extended periods of time.

    I might consider it for travel though. That seems like the only application that makes sense for me.

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  33. I guess my 1st post got lost...

    I'd only own a Kindle if it was a gift. I love everything about reading "real" books. I never buy new because I live near a 2nd hand bookstore, which helps my addiction.

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  34. Even though I'm a huge fan of books,I think this could be a good thing for the environment.

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  35. Sounds awesome. But I totally agree with you on the real books. I love it too much and there's something so much more personal about a book. So much more magical.

    Only way I'd go for this is because of saving the trees and environment and having so many books handy at your fingertips. But I'm very hesitant I think.

    Thanks for sharing.

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