The ancient Sumerian civilization wrote by imprinting clay tablets with various symbols and called it Cuneiform. Later writers made a technological leap forward, switching from those heavy tablets to papyrus, eventually parchment, and of course, today we use paper.
With the advent of the Internet, a variety of new options have emerged to sate ones need for news and entertainment, more practical and portable than even a pocket novel. They are known as e-readers, and today, at least in America, there is a spiffy little device known as the Amazon Kindle.
The Kindle, launched in the United States in 2007, is one of the latest versions of e-book readers, devices into which you can import your favourite titles and carry them with you wherever you go. The original version of the Kindle can hold up to 200 titles, while the Kindle 2 can hold 1500 and has access to over 230 000 titles.
You can find a shorter review of the Kindle by C/Net’s David Carnoy, and a more extensive review by Benjamin Higginbotham of Technology Evangelist on YouTube.
The Kindle is quite pricey at $399 (American mind you), a rate which Amazon has decided is the price of portability. Factored against the price of a good chiropractor (after lugging your book bag around all day), this might seem reasonable, but in these tough economic times, Amazon might want to rethink their price.
Unfortunately, the Kindle is not available in Canada at the moment, so don’t get rid of your backpack just yet.
Update–Oct 7, 2009. According to the Quill and Quire… Still no Kindle in Canada.
Update #2 According to Reuters, Kindle’s first to market lead may soon evaporate.
Update #3 As of November 17, 2009, Kindle is available in Canada. Finally!!!!!!!!! Thanks to the Quill and Quire for the good news.