eBook Notes For Tuesday October 13, 2009

Women, Gays Apparently Ruining Sci-Fi For the Rest of Us
— which critiques this post:

The War on Science Fiction and Marvin Minsky
— which actually does raise one interesting point here:

What has happened is that science fiction on television has for the most part become indistinguishable from most other television shows which are written for women filled with moronic relationship drama.

Lifetime in Space!

Twitter’s unlawful Newsom contribution

Does being on Twitter’s SUL constitute a non-monetary contribution? YES.

Twitter is providing this free service to Gavin Newsom, a declared candidate for governor. Newsom uses Twitter to send his Twitter followers links to his campaign website and to campaign news stories promoting his candidacy.

It would be personally very satisfying to me to see the children who (mis-)run Twitter meet the real world of real-life consequences. I hope they get a big fat fine for this.

Remixing the Book

We’ve always had abridged versions and “selected-essays-from” and audio versions and made-for-TV adaptations. But in a more open rights schema (say, Creative Commons licensing), there is something thrilling about the idea that dedicated readers – the most engaged of all stakeholders, beyond the original writer & editor – might legitimately improve texts for certain audiences.

I’m both intrigued and horrified by this idea. Several weeks ago I was mulling over how I really hate fantasy novels — I just can’t get into them with their bizarre names and use of magic or other such things. Beneath that veneer, however, could lurk an actually good story. It crossed my mind that such writers might want to consider remixing their own works for fantasy-averse people like me. Take away the weird names and the other things I find too alienating and set it in the present day. The King becomes, say, a CEO or just The Boss, the magic becomes a lawsuit or some other real-world device … and now not only does the writer quickly have a second book out there, but one that might even attract me and others like me.

Subject: Our Marketing Plan

The vi-spi is cross-platform, but don’t worry if you think you’re not on Facebook, because you actually are. Jason enrolled you when you signed the contract last year, or at least he was supposed to, and he told Sarah Williams he did before he had to retire and Sarah left for nursing school. You currently have 421 Friends, 17 Pending Requests, 8 Pokes, 5 Winks, and 3 Proposals of “Marriage.”

Oh. My. God.

I’ve attached a list of celebrities we think would be great to blurb your book, so find out their numbers and call them up.

Oh. My. God.

Once we get back from Frankfurt, we’d like to see you on morning talk shows like the “Today” show and “The View,” so please get yourself booked on them and keep us “in the loop.”

Oh. My. God.

F.Y.I., we’ve migrated all the photos out of your book and onto the Web page. It makes the hard-copy version cheaper to produce (fewer pages; no photos) and the e-text more “Kindle-friendly.”

Oh. My. God.

Why I Think E-Ink Readers Are Dumb


I fell in love with the Kindle last year, but I think you’re a fool to buy one now—let alone any of its lesser competitors—when so much new technology is about to hit over the next six months.

Boldfaced emphasis added by me.

Exactly! One such better device might already exist.

Archos Android Internet Tablet _1_

I’m still investigating it; more posts to come.

Sony’s E-Reader: A Nice Device at the Wrong Price

Several of the test-drivers pointed out that $199 is close enough to the price of a cheap netbook or an iPod touch and that it made more sense to buy either of those devices rather than a reader that can only do one thing.

Bingo! See above too.

”OMG! Exactly is like a newsstand in the palm of your hand. A journalist dream!”

Exactly is literally like having a newsstand in the palm of your hand. It is amazing. I can’t put it down!

this is a prime example of how touch will change everything.

It’s a Video! It’s a Book! It’s a Vook

A key part of Vook’s appeal is that, unlike a conventional e-reader, users do not purchase a separate device for accessing their vooks. Instead, they choose between a web browser-based platform or an iPhone/iPod touch mobile application. While Forrester analyst Sarah Rotman Epps believes that the web-based option will have limited appeal due to its lack of portability, she points out that “More people have iPhones than Sony Readers and Amazon Kindles put together.”

Boldfaced emphasis added by me.

Take a look, it’s in a Vook: Will the Reading Rainbow look the same in a hybrid book?

Sound samples in a book on music theory, for example, could help students in the same way that color printing improves the quality of books on art history.

What about texts for economics? Any text that requires charts — and more importantly, charts of time series?

Sarah Vowell: A Litquake Author-on-Author Interview

JB: Will we still be reading books in 30 years?

SV: I hope so, but I have my doubts. But there’s this new thing called a “vook” — an electronic book with embedded videos. This is probably one of the landmarks on the path to the robots taking over the world.


But they didn’t do it right, so here’s my version of the screensnap done pimp-properly:

Click = big

Creative Profiles – iPhone Developers – The real price of iPhone piracy

This month, pirated downloads have outpaced paid downloads 3:1 and more than 800 pirated copies have phoned home in the last week.

If you can afford an iPod Touch or iPhone, you can damned well afford to pay for software. Do it!

Building on iPhone App Success, Dictionary.com Launches Blackberry App

Dictionary.com launched their iPhone app six months ago and over 3 million people have downloaded the app. Now, they’re branching out with a mobile app for Blackberry phones.

One Response to eBook Notes For Tuesday October 13, 2009

  1. Puma says:

    Lifetime in Space! LOL. I am getting visions of Mel Brooks at the very end of History of the World Part 1. :-)

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