Building notes, projects, and occasional rants

Amazon Kindle

I find it amusing that a search for Kindle in Amazon UK doesn't return any relevant results. So much PR, so little return.

Anyway, I'm carbon-oriented when we are talking about books. I prefer the paper-kind, not the electronic version. I subscribed O'Reilly Safari bookshelf for a while, but I stopped using them because of that.

Granted, the experience with Kindle could be better than a browser and a computer screen, the display is much better than the usual 72dpi of a LCD.

But still, I think that, taken everything in account, a paper book is more fun, useful, long-lived and even, if the paper companies get their acts together, more eco-friendly than any electronic alternative. At least I only have to "charge" my book once in his entire lifetime, right?

The thing that I feel lacking from the book business is an indexing service. I own about 100 technical books, on several topics, and I have most of them in shelfs for quick access. I have the capacity of memorizing the book that contains what I'm looking for, its a curse. Sometimes is freakish because I remember the exact chapter number, and the page layout. My memory sort-of works that way.

But I would love to have access to the full text index of the books in digital format. I would buy my books in the usual way, and with it, I could receive some code to download a copy of an inverted tree that I could plug into some software running on my local machine.

This way I would have a personal index of all the books I own.

Maybe Safari bookshelf could sell this, as an added service: the possibility of keeping a list of books I own and allow me to search just those. Not great, but a good start.

Update: Kindle is based on Linux, so Amazon has the source code available for download. Commentary by Robert Love.

Update 2: Another Robert Love post about the Kindle features. The lack of PDF support is disturbing.