When a long time ago I started digitizing my music, I was looking for a way to get it organized, carry it with me whenever I went and play what I wanted at the smallest whim. Then along came the iPod, and I discovered another objective which turns out to be the killer one: random play – my own private radio made up of music I like.
As the faithful readers know, I have already figured a similar solution for my thousands of photos, and I am getting closer to a workable solution for my 750+ movie collection.
So far, I hadn’t thought about my 3000+ books, mostly because early ebooks readers were downright fugly, but now read this Newsweek interview with Jeff Bezos of Amazon.
I haven’t seen the product (nobody has, it’s not on sale yet), so we have to take Jeff’s word for a number of design objectives which he nails right on the head IMHO, but I’d certainly like to see how good is the actual implementation. This is what I would look for to consider it:
- light – as in “light like a paperback” – enough to hold with a single hand
- small – as in “small like a paperback” – enough to slip in a coat’s pocket
- decent screen – I want to read about 2,500 11-point characters before I need to turn a page, but I’d also love resizable text because I’m not getting any younger
- readable in full light
- instant on
- a search function, both at book and bookshelf level
- enough storage to carry a decent stock of books (at about 1 MB apiece, a 16GB solid state device should carry 10,000+ books)
- a screen protector that doesn’t get in the way when you’re reading and which you cannot lose
- decent battery life, like a couple of day’s worth, and please allow for USB charging (oh, and automatic turning itself off after XX mins of inactivity
- a smart solution to buy books (I expect a tight integrated package like the iPod + iTunes combo); off the air would be fantastic for those long hours in airport lounges
- no DRM crap
- no Windows
There’s going to be plenty of printed word talibans who are going to hate it even without trying it – Scoble has a small collection on his blog; and to be honest even I don’t know how I feel about it.
It would need to come in a sexy (like in Apple-sexy – unlike this hopefully early mockup) package, and then I’d love to give it a try.