Blatant Bibliophile Blog

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Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

I Have a Kindle 2 and You Don’t. Or Maybe You Do.

Posted by blatantbibliophiles on May 11, 2009

Kindle by Joe Shlabotnik

Kindle 2 Photo Courtesy of Joe Shlabotnik by Flickr Creative Commons

Hello, all you unlucky people out there who don’t have a Kindle yet. I have nothing but sympathy for you, because I am now the hap-hap-happiest person in the whole world because I just got a Kindle 2 for Mother’s Day. (Yes, it is true that I am the greatest Mom in the world–not). But I got a Kindle 2 anyway. And I love it. My daughter got one a couple of months ago and she has been so in love with it that she conned my husband and son into divvying up with her to buy one for me for Mom’s Day. So now I have one, too, and I am madly in love. It is the best thing that has happened to me since audiobooks on Audible and iTunes. But don’t worry, iTunes, we won’t be breaking up any time soon, because even though my Kindle will read the books to me, its voice capacity leaves a lot to be desired. But the downloads are virtually instantaneous from Kindle’s 3G wireless network and only cost $6.04, as opposed to around $25-$30 for the audiobooks on iTunes and Audible. Sometimes more. Sometimes much more. And you can turn the Kindle 2’s audio off and on quickly and easily, or choose from a male or female voice. You can choose from over 275,000 books (plus newspapers, magazines, and blogs) and your Kindle 2 will hold over 1,500 of them. The new Kindle DX will hold even more–4,500 books, but it’s bigger, pricier, and not yet available. I figure by the time I could collect that many books, something new will be out. Plus the Kindle 2 is lighter than a paperback and as thin as a magazine, but tinier, so it fits easily into even a small purse. The Kindle DX also includes a native PDF reader, whereas the Kindle 2 has to convert them, and some complicated files might not convert perfectly. Most will, however. You can also obtain cool tools for your Kindle. I immediately ordered a cover/platform to use for hands-free reading by the pool and a tiny little nightlight for reading in bed. You can order all kinds of goodies from Amazon, the Kindle’s hometown. This is a link to more info about the Kindle 2 and all of its accessories. The Kindle 2 set my family back $359, whereas you’ll have to fork over $489 if you opt for the Kindle DX. And, oh, yeah, the Kindle 2 really is quite readable outside in bright light, unlike your evil laptop. And you can get documents (including the aforementioned PDFs) sent to you via email on your Kindle. I am so in love!

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Move Over, Harry Potter! Researchers Are Developing an Invisibility Cloak

Posted by blatantbibliophiles on August 10, 2008

Scientists at the University of California at Berkeley, funded by the United States military, have developed a new material that can bend light around objects, making them virtually invisible. The scientific breakthrough could make not only humans, but almost anything, including tanks and ships, disappear. The technology is still years away from realization, but it is still exciting! It is based on earlier research with microwaves at Imperial College London. The research by both groups is based on the theory an object can be hidden by bending light around it. The lead researcher, Xiang Zhang, said: “In the case of invisibility cloaks or shields, the material would need to curve light waves completely around the object like a river flowing around a rock.” Someone who looked at the cloaked object would only see light from behind it — making the object seem to disappear. For more information about the invisibility cloak, you can read an article at FoxNews.

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Posted by blatantbibliophiles on March 5, 2008

Want to post your videos to your blog or MySpace? Well, welcome to Vod:Pod! Here’s what you do:

  • Go to your blog Dashboard
  • Click on Presentation.
  • Go to Widgets
  • Add the Vod:Pod Videos widget to your sidebar
  • Click on the configure icon
  • Click on the Start a Pod link to create a Vod:Pod Account
  • Enter the name you want to use for your Vod:Pod
  • Click Create Pod
  • You should now be on your Vod:Pod page
  • Go to the bottom
  • Click Tools
  • Follow directions to install the Vodpod Browser button (do this step on any computer you will want to use to save on to your Vod:Pod account)
  • Go back to your blog and add the URL of your Vodpod to the widget
  • Close the configure box
  • Click on Save changes
  • When you find a video you want to add to your blog or website, click on the Save to Vodpod link in Your Favorites
  • A Vod:Pod pop-up window will appear
  • Choose to which pod to save the video
  • Click publish
  • The video will show up on your blog in the sidebar

Thanks to Kristine Wood of Teasley Middle School for these directions!

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Want to Take a Fun Quiz for a Change?

Posted by blatantbibliophiles on January 7, 2008


Ok, so you had enough of challenging, boring, scary, torturous quizzes with all those finals before the holidays. Now it’s time for a fun quiz. Or maybe two. At Blue Pyramid, you can take a book quiz to see which book best fits your personality. Which book best fit my personality? Love in the Time of Cholera. Sorry, haven’t read that one yet, but now I must. After the book quiz, I couldn’t resist the country quiz, and I discovered that I was…Thailand. Sorry, never been there, either. But it was fun! Surf on over to Blue Pyramid and amuse yourself with a few quizzes. Because you never know.

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Kindle is One of a Kind

Posted by blatantbibliophiles on November 27, 2007


Have you seen the new Kindle from It’s a new reading device that allows you to instantly and wirelessly download books, newspapers, magazines, Wikipedia, and blogs to this paperback-sized device. Unlike your laptop, Kindle is easy to read outside in bright sunlight and weighs only 10.3 ounces. You can also easily adjust your font size and bookmark your location in your book. The price? $399. This new “toy” has been so popular that it is temporarily unavailable and Amazon does not expect to resume shipment until Christmas Eve, but hey, shipping’s free! Want to see a video demonstration of Kindle? Click here. Here’s what you get for your money:

  • Enjoy a revolutionary electronic-paper display providing a sharp, high-resolution screen that looks and reads like real paper.
  • Thrill to ease of use with no computer, cables, or syncing.
  • Wrap yourself in the luxury of wireless connectivity that enables you to shop the Kindle Store directly from your Kindle—whether you’re in the back of a taxi, at the airport, or lounging in bed.
  • Purchase a book and have it auto-delivered wirelessly in under one minute.
  • Revel in the 88,000 available books, including 100 of the 112 current New York Times® Best Sellers.
  • Order New York Times® Best Sellers and all New Releases for just $9.99, unless marked otherwise.
  • Download and read first chapters for free before you decide to buy.
  • Delight to top U.S. newspapers including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post; top magazines including TIME, Atlantic Monthly, and Forbes—all auto-delivered wirelessly.
  • Expand your horizons with top international newspapers from France, Germany, and Ireland; Le Monde, Frankfurter Allgemeine, and The Irish Times—all auto-delivered wirelessly.
  • Get your mitts on more than 250 top blogs from the worlds of business, technology, sports, entertainment, and politics, including BoingBoing, Slashdot, TechCrunch, ESPN’s Bill Simmons, The Onion, Michelle Malkin, and The Huffington Post—all updated wirelessly throughout the day.
  • Stay skinny with its teensy size: lighter and thinner than a typical paperback; weighing only 10.3 ounces.
  • Hold over 200 of your favorite titles.
  • Celebrate its long battery life. Leave wireless on and recharge approximately every other day. Turn wireless off and read for a week or more before recharging. Fully recharges in 2 hours.
  • Outdo WiFi, because Kindle utilizes the same high-speed data network (EVDO) as advanced cell phones—so you never have to locate a hotspot.
  • Luxuriate in no monthly wireless bills, service plans, or commitments—Amazon takes care of the wireless delivery so you can simply click, buy, and read.
  • Frolic over your free wireless access to Wikipedia.
  • Email your Word documents and pictures (.JPG, .GIF, .BMP, .PNG) to Kindle for easy on-the-go viewing.

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