The Amazon Kindle world just snuck up on me and removed $45.13 from my wallet. And the experience turned out to be a pleasant surprise.
I'm not technophobic, but I honestly was planning on sitting on the sidelines for this particular episode of the digitization of the world. I figured electronic books would arrive in good time as Net access expanded, devices grew more sophisticated, publishers and distributors hashed out the business issues, and legal complications of Google Books ground themselves through the courts.
I'm not opposed to reading text on a screen, though print is easier on the eyes. I just figured that--judging by the digital convulsions in the movie, TV, and music businesses--the San Francisco Public Library would be my safe haven for two or three more years.
During that time, e-book readers would get better displays, battery life, network access, and other features, and Amazon's Kindle book readers or some equivalent would grow up to become worthwhile.
What I hadn't counted on was a free Amazon iPhone application that converted me to the new order in a matter of minutes. E-books doubtless aren't for everybody, but one idle moment when I had time to kill showed they are for me. … Read more