piranha: red origami crane (Default)
[personal profile] piranha
firecat asked how the kobo falls short of my ideal, and a) it's a long list, and b) it's not that the kobo falls short in specific, but that all ereaders fall short at this point, so i thought i separate this from the reader review itself.


  • full text search.
  • full colour, high resolution, primarily to view images. though i could live with high-level grayscale instead and forget about reading graphic novels/comics on my ereader.
  • comics view functions, if i get colour e-ink.
  • foreground and background colour/contrast control.
  • intuitive navigation.
  • annotations: highlights, notes, drawings.
  • clipboard.
  • bookmarks.
  • integrated dictionaries of my choice.
  • wifi/3G/bluetooth (this is not a top requirement).
  • if the above, then also integrated google/wikipedia lookup.
  • integrated translation for several languages of my choice.
  • several fonts of my choosing, as well as sizing.
  • tagging of books.
  • handle the major formats so i can stop converting.
  • touch screen (pressure-sensitive stylus would work best for me, but multi-touch could make navigation very easy).
  • handwriting recognition.
  • split screen or easy switching back-and-forth so i can see different passages at once.
  • open-source OS.
  • external memory expandability.
  • good library management.
  • lightweight.
  • decent battery life (a full day would be acceptable, a week would be fabulous), and quick charge.
  • USB connectivity.
  • rugged.
  • well-priced (and naturally it should come with a pony).


i don't ask for much, do i. *snrk*.

i don't need easy integrated purchasing from anywhere i am, and i can totally live without wifi as well; that would just be nice for looking up information. i'm also fine without audio.

on 2010-05-06 13:34 (UTC)
maize: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] maize
What I find fascinating about lists like this is how much *more* people want a Reader to be able to do than a book, given that usually these are sort of, "To get me to transition from a book, a Reader would have to..." lists. Books can't do the majority of these things -- certainly far, far fewer of them than readers can. (I think the only one books do that Readers don't is a full-colour paper-like display. I suppose they do an extremely limited form of split-screening as well, although it can only show consecutive pages.)

That said, it's a nice list, and a device that did all that would be pretty sweet. I'd want one that has no touch screen, though. I've had the Sony PRS-505 and the PRS-600, and the big difference between the two is the touch screen. I very seldom use the touch screen (only when the interface forces me to) and I miss the extra hardware controls the 505 had since it didn't have a touchscreen. Also, the touchscreen layer reduces the contrast of the display and makes the screen look less sharp. I'm not positive if the touch screen is to blame, but I suspect that it's also why it gets much poorer battery life.

A lot of this probably depends on what people read. I've heard that the iPad is a dream for reading comics and graphic novels, for example, and I can totally see that.

on 2010-05-06 15:28 (UTC)
seryn: flowers (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] seryn
In exchange for restricted content licenses, a technology-dependent medium, and high initial expense for the device (and no cost savings for books)--- I have to be getting something better than a paper book.

on 2010-05-06 21:22 (UTC)
seryn: flowers (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] seryn
Technology-dependent medium: If you don't have power to charge it and a means to get books (until the Kindle you had to download to your computer and plug your reader in; the readers didn't have a means to buy directly) you have a paperweight. A book is a book pretty much no matter when you pick it up. If you're homeless and you have a book, you can still read it.

Supposedly in the late 80s, the price of books skyrocketed because of a massive increase in the cost of paper. Books went up about 30% between when I was first buying them for myself and when I had a grown-up job.

Most non-new paperbacks are available 4th book free on Amazon and in person at Borders (during a sale). So in the paper version I'm paying $5.50 or so for a $7.99 list book. I don't see any reason why I shouldn't expect that kind of pricing from e-books. After all, I can't give it to someone else who might enjoy it if I want to bin it after 2 chapters, so it shouldn't cost more than the paper one.

on 2010-05-06 15:25 (UTC)
seryn: fountain pen nib (screed pen)
Posted by [personal profile] seryn
From what you've said here, my main disagreements are with the order of the features you're wanting.

I want battery life. So I can take it with me on vacation and not need to charge it. Like a book. Color chews through battery so if it's a choice between a week-long battery and color, color loses. Also e-ink is vastly superior for reading to the types of color screens currently available, though I have heard rumors of new color technology coming out Real Soon

I need, it's an absolute rock bottom requirement that I can read in full sun. I admit that if the book could be self-lighting so I could read in bed at night, that would be quite useful as well.

I really want rugged. I'm probably a 6 year old when it comes to taking care of my electronic toys. Some of the e-devices out there are clearly designed so you have to buy 3 of them per year because if you breathe on it funny, it implodes.

There is absolutely no excuse for readers not having on-board library management and the facilities to read any type of e-book natively. I would not accept a crippled reader unless there was a significant cost savings. If you're charging me $350 for a device then you can probably afford an Adobe license to decrypt PDF at least for your centralized server.

I don't care much about the notes and annotations at all. I don't write in my books. I would like a good system of flagging passages because I often have multiple scraps of paper or sticky flags. Especially for cookbooks. Not that the annotations feature wouldn't be useful if it existed, maybe, but it's not important to me right now.

You said dictionaries... sure. As long as they're there to allow me to look up words used by authors and not just for bitching at me about my spelling in annotations. The current usage of dictionary seems to mean not something which provides extra-contextual meaning, but just something warehousing mediocre data for the spelling police.

I don't want my reading device to have wifi connectivity unless it is providing that connectivity itself. I don't trust all these hotspots not to be doing something nefarious with the traffic going through their network. It wouldn't be that hard for someone to create something to target fancy e-book readers.

What I want most though is for e-book sellers to stop assuming I'm some sort of criminal and gunking up my legally purchased material with DRM. If we had open formats, then the market would be wide open for someone to come along and create a TiVo-like device which is independent of the content and vastly improves the interface and user experience.

note: I do not have an electronic book reading device. I use the free software Amazon offers and grab only the books which are offered for free.


on 2010-05-06 19:05 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] gam0ra.blogspot.com
Yep. I'd buy that. For an ereader I don't want something that replaces a book, I want something that replaces my library.

on 2010-05-07 01:40 (UTC)
jesse_the_k: mirror reflection of 1/3 of my head, creating a central third eye, a heart shaped face, and a super-pucker mouth (endless)
Posted by [personal profile] jesse_the_k
+1 and my magazine subscriptions. Oh! I would be so happy to have all the back issues of some of my specialist magazines!

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