Nook

I bought a gadget.

 

I haven't been reading as much fiction as I'd like over the last years. I figured an ebook reader might get me to read more. So far, so good. Let's see if it lasts.

 

There's a lot about the Nook I like better than a Kindle.

- It runs Android and it's surprisingly easy to hack- just pull out an SD card hidden under the back cover, change one line in a configuration file on a PC, and it will then happily accept connections from the Android debugging utilities. From there you can push new software or modify anything you like.

- It doesn't have a large area of its face wasted by an ugly, poorly designed keypad. Instead there's a little but useful LCD.

- Its DRM model is less draconian than Kindle- everything is based on non-proprietary standards, and if you want you can copy the books off and view them with any compatible reader, including on your computer or phone.

- Their selection of books is almost double Amazon's- apparently the publishers hate Amazon's one-price-fits-all model, and several are refusing to play along.

- Finally, there are supposedly plans in the works to open it up to 3rd party development; seems an obvious conclusion from their choice of OS, and should provide some interesting options in the future.

 

My only real complaint is that the touchscreen on the LCD is a bit under-responsive. I suspect this is either due to an underpowered processor, or a side effect of an attempt at saving power. It's really no big deal, though- it's only noticeable when scrolling through lists on the LCD, which you seldom need to do.

 

It doesn't have a web browser, but when I've tried the browser on a Kindle it was a really painful experience. A solid Wikipedia client would be fantastic, though.

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Taken on April 4, 2010
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