Notes on a Kindle

I am almost a little bit tempted – yet still far less tempted than those words suggest, I promise – by the Amazon Kindle 3 electrically powered book reading device, which is worrying, because I really ought to finish reading the devilishly numerous paper books that I haven’t yet finished reading before I even think about an unnecessary and soon-to-be-obsolete magical futuristic reading device.

Like Magnús Magnússon, I’ve started so I’ll finish. Yes. (I mean, of course, Magnús Magnússon the dead John Humphrys off of Mastermind, not Magnús Ver Magnússon the Icelandic strong-man, or Magnus Magnusson who was the Earl of Orkney from 1273 to 1284.)

Even after the partially read books, there are just as many that I have placed in my book storage areas but haven’t actually started yet. Only after my finishing those two bulging great libraries would an electronic book machine make any sense. And you are looking at, what, if current trends continue (which of course they won’t), several years before all that’s been ingested? I know, you couldn’t make it up, it is a shocking state of affairs, Michael Gove needs to sort it out.

More than anything, I just want to see what this blog looks like on a futuristic computer from out of the future. I could just get someone to take a photograph – or it would be even easier to make everything here redirect to the New York Times’s website, because in the pictures those machines often have that website loaded on to them. That would definitely count.

The “New WebKit-Based Browser” is my primary source of what it would be wrong to call excitement. There are no pictures of it in action, which could seem a bit strange. (It is a bit cheeky of them to allow people to mistake “browser” for “bowser”, because actually those are somewhat different things. Clarification would be nice, please. I find it a bit off-putting – what if it is a typing mistake, and there actually is an integrated organism that fires poo onto the carpet? Check the stuff about refunds, stay on the safe side.)

There’s some fuss about the stylish graphite body. Is this just the name of a colour, or is it actually made from the stuff of pencils? If the latter were true, it would lead to even dirtier fingers than Belizean newsprint – it probably isn’t, you know, and anyone who thinks otherwise is living in a fantasy world. (I bought a “charcoal” T-shirt once, and it was rather disappointingly made out of cotton.)

I expect the next version will be a yet another different size, forcing each sweaty-palmed idiot to buy yet another leather case. This is a cunning plan. The way forward, I think, is to fashion an inexpensive, handmade, indie case from a dribble-wracked pillowcase and some small blunt scissors from out of a Christmas cracker. That is what a clever person might do. Of course, a sensible person wouldn’t buy an Amazon Kindle, and instead would use their pillowcase as a thing to put a pillow in, to prevent dreams about feathers. (That is definitely why we have pillowcases.)

Watching the video, even just observing the names of the two new versions (“Wi-Fi” and “3G + Wi-Fi”) it looks a bit like they’re flattering Ian Pad rather a lot – with the sincerest form of imitation. (It’s a sufficiently nicely, originally, designed product page. The world would be, well, not all that much better – but, still, better – if all Amazon product pages were that good.)

Incidentally, the man in the video says “Amazon” in a ridicuous way. Like, “Amaz-on”. I am not sure if this is what we are supposed to do – it’s completely unprecedented if it is. Have we all been saying it wrong? Is the man in the video a more pathetic version of Jesus, sent down here to make us correctly pronounce of the name of an American multinational electronic commerce company? No.

(The title of this is very weak indeed. Oh dear. I thought about “Kindle surprise”, but felt that that was slightly worse. I shall try to write something that can be appropriately entitled “Notes on a sandal”.)

(Actually, “Notes on a sandal” appears to have had all the juice squeezed out of it by the Daily Mail. I could reclaim it for something positive, but that almost certainly would be futile. Oh well.)

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