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fear of a kindle planet

November 28, 2007 Leave a comment Go to comments

I don’t necessarily believe that if you like books – the physicality of them, I mean – that you have to hate the idea of e-books. Anyone who likes books might like the idea of having access to their entire library from anywhere, anytime. But then you see something like the Kindle, and you realize that the people who want to bring you the e-book not only don’t like books, they don’t even like you.

I twittered today that it’s impossible to overstate how badly designed the Kindle form factor is. I did that only after trying to pick one up, and accidentally paging forward. Repeatedly. The whole thing is a mess, but I’m far too lazy to critique the thing from an experience design perspective. I’d much rather you just go read the most recent A Brief Message from Chip Kidd, who nails it squarely.

Saying anything else on the topic risks belaboring the point, but I really can’t resist this: in the comments to the post, an indignant gadget lover states how anxiously they look forward to a successful e-book device, eager as they are to read everything they possibly can on a screen. The commenter adds:

“when cds came along, people purged out their cassettes. when mp3 players came long people purged out their cds. I think books and dvds are next. I purged out my books years ago.”

Let that one roll around in your head for a second. “I purged out my books years ago.” Without a doubt that’s the scariest f-ing thing I’ve read in a comment section in, like, weeks. WOW. Nice one, dude.

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