33 Eric Collins

eric-collins-thumbNewsMike Elgan and Andy Ihnatko on the new Kindle iPhone app, two new rumors about the Kindle 3 (will have WiFi and may be introduced as early as April), a stealthy firmware update for the Kindle 2, and a troubling problem with the text readability on the Kindle 2.

Tech Tip – Exploring the Kindle iPhone app.

Interview – Eric Collins, vice president of Nuance Mobile, a unit of Nuance Communications. Nuance provides the Kindle 2’s text to speech capability.

Kindle Quote – from David Emberson‘s Kindle 2 Cookbook.

Comments – Louis D’Elia (secret voice of the Kindle 2), Jesslyn Hendrix, Allen MacDiarmid, Alan P. Rose, Dorian Nisinson, Greg Keck, Larry Goss, James Chang, Marcie MARCY McKenzie (comparison of K1, K2 and iPhone), John McLaughlin, Mary McManus, Karen Oland, Linda Hopkins, Shelly Crawford-Stock, Zite Hutton (Amazon changes its mind on custom Kindle screen savers), Pam Upton.

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Comments 11

  1. Pat Hawn wrote:

    The male “text to speech” voice is that of Stephen Hawking.
    Eric Collins just went over my head.

    Posted 06 Mar 2009 at 10:48 pm
  2. Rick Greenspan wrote:

    Pat, I’m assuming he meant the staccato “electronic” voice that Hawking now has.

    From Wikipedia: Stephen William Hawking CH, CBE, FRS, FRSA, PhD (born 8 January 1942) is a British theoretical physicist. Hawking is the Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge (but intends to retire from this post in 2009),[1] a Fellow of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge and the distinguished research chair at Waterloo’s Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics.[2] He is known for his contributions to the fields of cosmology and quantum gravity, especially in the context of black holes. He has also achieved success with works of popular science in which he discusses his own theories and cosmology in general; these include the runaway bestseller A Brief History of Time, which stayed on the British Sunday Times bestseller list for a record-breaking 237 weeks.[3] Hawking has amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a condition that has progressed over the years and has left him almost completely paralysed.

    Posted 07 Mar 2009 at 8:31 am
  3. Pat Hawn wrote:

    Len, here is an interesting website about bypassing Whispernet. http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/news/2009/03/kindle-2-hacks-bypassing-whispernet.ars

    I’m in a section of the country that has good Sprint connection, so I don’t need to do this, but I see the need out in the rest of the country.

    Posted 07 Mar 2009 at 10:56 am
  4. Pam wrote:

    Len, I enjoyed your podcast today, as usual. I agree that you could leave the listener comments out of your podcast, unless there is something interesting that you feel would benefit us. If you would like to get a little more money coming your way to support your podcast, I would like to hear about the books you are reading, and also that your guests are reading, and link them on your site to Amazon. That way we could buy the books, if we are intested, and you would receive a little payback. I know they do this on Kindle Boards. Just a suggestion. Thanks.

    Posted 07 Mar 2009 at 3:18 pm
  5. Werner Aguilar wrote:

    Len, I understand that the official policy of Kindle is to charge 10 cents for a translated document and then e-mailed to their Kindle. I’m not sure if I heard it in one of your podcasts that you tried it and was not charged. I noticed on the Manage your Kindle website at Amazon a link near the bottom of the web page

    “Learn more about individual charges”

    that opens a window stating that you will be charged $3.00 once you reached 30 e-mails translated and sent to your Kindle. I haven’t tried it but I am interested if anyone has sent 30, if they have then received a charge of $3.00. Thanks, your podcasts are terrific.

    Posted 08 Mar 2009 at 11:18 am
  6. Wayne wrote:

    The charge is for sending to your @Kindle.com address for WIRELESS delivery. There is no charge if you use your @free.kindle.com address to send to but this service sends the converted files back to your associated e-mail address use with amazon.com and from the links in this e-mail you will have to download the files to your computer and move them into the documents folder once you have connected your Kindle via the USB cable.

    I think there has been some confusion where some are doing the latter and believing to have done the former for which they were expecting a charge at first but ending up being charged.

    Posted 08 Mar 2009 at 5:20 pm
  7. Wayne wrote:

    I meant they end up not being charged. If it helps to keep things straight the fee is basically a fee for the convenience of using the wireless network, not to convert the file. So Amazon has provided a non-wireless alternative so that you can avoid the charge if you are willing to do a little extra work.

    Posted 08 Mar 2009 at 5:24 pm
  8. Wayne wrote:

    About getting access to the wireless network when you are outside of the coverage area, I wanted to add that those who have never synced wirelessly won’t be able to register and hence won’t be able to access their settings box as instructed. Or this is the way Amazon seems to being things lately.

    So for those outside of a good coverage area hoping to use the method Pat has passed on to us should keep this in mind.

    I had someone call Amazon CS and they said some people are sending their Kindle to people they know in a coverage area to be swithced on so the automatic one-time registration can take place. However, they also caution you to use some kind of deceptive packaging (differnt kind of box with different form factor) as Kindle’s have been know to have been stolen in the mail when packaged in some kind of obvious way.

    Without wireless you can not receive any of the sample chapters as that is only done wireless and so makes me speculate that the content provider may be subsidizing this as a form of marketing and maybe building it into the cost structure of their business.

    Posted 08 Mar 2009 at 5:36 pm
  9. Wayne wrote:

    Without wireless, you can’t get those sample chapters, but you can kind of stock pile them at your Manage Your Kindle page (they’ll appear on a list–several of them) and when you eventually get to a coverage area download a whole bunch of them from your account to your Kindle wirelessly. But after several are on the list the others further down get hiden from view so there is no way to recall over time just what you had selected unless you write the titles down.

    Also, a pretty disappointing thing was using a kindle feeder service that aggregates a lot of articles from the Internet according to your feed settings. The catch is you get a short summary for many of the articles and a link to the full article but can’t use the link while reading the summaries on your Kindle since you don’t have wireless access.

    Still there are so many great things you *can* do with the Kindle to offset these disappointments and even if you can not use your Kindle fully, it is kind of impressive the degree to which Amazon is exploiting wireless capabilities even if you are unable to make use of it yourself in your given situation.

    Posted 08 Mar 2009 at 5:54 pm
  10. Eugene Chojnowski wrote:

    Enjoy your podcast.

    Please put me on your alert list.

    Thank you

    Posted 09 Mar 2009 at 11:30 am
  11. Errol wrote:

    I loved the fact that during the first few minutes of the interview because of the quality of the recording, Eric Collins voice sounded very text-to-speech. I could have I could have sworn that Len was interviewing the Kindle 2 eReader device itself.

    Great interview and keep up the great work Mr Len Edgerly.

    Posted 22 Mar 2009 at 7:16 am

Trackbacks & Pingbacks 2

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    […] (2:34) – The Wall Street Journal gives credence to the rumor I passed along six weeks ago, namely that a larger-screen Kindle 3 is due out by this year’s holiday shopping season.  […]

  2. From The Kindle Chronicles - TKC 126 Peter Tighe on 17 Dec 2010 at 10:37 pm

    […] Mentioned in Comments – My Nuance Communications interviews were TKC 33 with Eric Collins and TKC 65 with Stefaan van Gerven.  Click here for the eBook Ninjas podcast and […]