TKC 178 Darlene

News – Amazon announces a record holiday season for the Kindle, and touts the Kindle Direct Publishing success of Darcie Chan. 2) M-Edge Accessories charges Amazon with “unlawful corporate bullying” in a lawsuit filed this week. Nate Hoffelder sees a veiled response to the lawsuit in Amazon’s year-end press release.

Tech Tip – Stephen S recommends SanDisk Memory Zone, a free app available at Amazon’s Appstore for Android, as a way to see which files are taking up the most space on your Kindle Fire. Other handy free apps Stephen mentions are Quick System Info ProGemini App ManagerFile ExpertES File Explorer, and AndroXPlorer. Tom Semple offers a smart tip for preventing unintentional navigation or user-interface activity if your Kindle Touch’s power button gets turned on by mistake in a pocket or a purse. Hint: It’s about a password.

Interview (starts at 11:50) – My wife Darlene gives her first impressions of the Kindle Touch and explains why she hates the Fire.

Content – Books: Matterhorn by Karl Marlantes; Queen Elizabeth’s Christmas Speeches, 1952-2010 (click here for Forbes story); a free preview of Breaking the Page: Transforming Books and the Reading Experience by Peter Meyers; and Patrick O’Brian’s Master and Commander and the rest of his Aubrey-Maturin series (via Katie Loss who hopes to zoom Kindle copies of the books to her son, Eric Loss, during his circumnavigation of the globe). Video: Arrested Development and The Wire. Music: Amazon’s 100-song playlist sampling  “Outstanding 2011 Albums You Might Have Missed” led me to purchase Delicate Steve’s Wondervision album for $5. Apps: Solitaire and Bejeweled 2.

Next Week’s Guest: Dr. Eric McLuhan, son of the late renowned media theorist Marshall McLuhan and an internationally known lecturer and author on communications and media in his own right.

Next Google Plus TKC Hangout: Wednesday, January 4 at 3 p.m. Mountain Time. If you are not yet in my TKC hangout circle, please email me at PodChronicles at Gmail Dot Com with the URL of your G+ profile page.

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Comments 10

  1. Bob Cope wrote:

    Matterhorn is THE definitive work on the Vietnam War; at least from the ground soldiers’ perspective. I watched truckloads of Marines come back to Danang Air Base in the late ’60s; their clothes in tatters and most with 1,000 yard stares. And then, because they were only permitted to buy beer, they’d seek us Air Force types out to barter for cheap bottles of bourbon — with cases of steaks; 55 pound cases of steaks. We ate well……but Marlantes’ book taught me why they looked like they were coming back from hell — because they were.
    For a year or so now, I’ve told anyone involved with Vietnam, “Read Matterhorn; if you don’t like it, I’ll refund your money.” There have been no takers. ((Now I’ll listen to the podcast….) Bob (Col, USAF Intelligence (Retired))

    Posted 31 Dec 2011 at 3:09 am
  2. Len Edgerly wrote:

    Bob, I just finished Matterhorn this morning and realized that few other novels I’ve ever read have affected and inspired me as much. I am so grateful to Marlantes for granting me access to the experience of those who fought in Vietnam. I watched guys in my college class struggle with fear of going and shame at getting out of the draft in 1972, when I graduated with hereditary knee problems that rendered me 1Y with a 333 draft number to boot. The book renewed my passion for the E-Books for Troops project and gives me a better sense of what those who read our Kindles in Afghanistan and Iraq are going through. Next up on my Kindle is War, Sebastian Junger’s nonfiction account of the war in Afghanistan.
    Thank you for your service. I now have a better appreciation for just how much gratitude you and everyone who has served our nation deserves.

    Posted 31 Dec 2011 at 11:25 am
  3. Mary C. Butash wrote:

    Kudos to Darlene!!

    Finally some content on the Touch! I too am tired of the Fire talk! Despite the fact that I am an early adopter and a Kindle loyalist, I am still not completely happy with my 3G Touch. To echo what another listenener expressed “Let’s say the truth” about this new Kindle. I have been reading on a Kindle 2 for 3 years and have been very happy doing so. To use Amazon’s catch phrase “the seamless interaction” where the device disappears in my hands is still not there even though I have been reading on it daily since it arrived November 22! For Darlene: it’s advantages is that it is smaller and lighter and isn’t losing its battery life as my Kindle 2 is and for Len, it really highlights much more easily. I MISS MY BUTTONS! The touch is so sensitive that just placing a finger NEAR THE SCREEN creates an action. I am so glad it is in a case so I can hold it away from the screen. I still touch and it goes forward many pages and then I have lost my place. As was mentioned on the podcast, links get in the way and indeed I did go to swiping at times instead of touching to avoid this. But WHY should I have to think so hard about navigating instead of JUST READING? Doesn’t this defeat the purpose of making you one with the book?

    I love the special offers. I got my case for 50% off using it and downloaded an audible com book for free using them.

    I have tried the X-ray, the other draw of the Touch. In the Mill River Recluse, it was helpful in sorting out characters but just a novelty.

    After this podcast I decided to go back to the Kindle 2 to see if I enjoy my reading more. Too late to send the Touch back. Perfect solution may be a Basic with special offers if it ever comes in 3G. I agree with Darlene that I still want 3 G.

    I also agree with Darlene that we spend too much time with our devices. No husband to communicate with here, but my cats will meow and stare me down when I have been using my technology too long.

    Time to smell the roses! Keep on reading Darlene and giving us another perspective. Mary Butash

    Posted 31 Dec 2011 at 2:45 pm
  4. Len Edgerly wrote:

    Great comments, Mary! I would give Amazon a call and see if they’ll take back your Touch even if it’s past the one-month mark. They frequently surprise us by going outside the lines to satisfy customers. You might have to pay shipping. If I understand your situation, you have a K2 but not a Kindle Keyboard 3G. Maybe you could swap the Touch for the Keyboard?

    I told Darlene we’d have a lot of good comments as a result of her interview, and you’re proving me correct!

    Posted 31 Dec 2011 at 2:53 pm
  5. Bob Lee wrote:

    I LOVE when Darlene is on!! She has great insights on what basic functions should be easily accomplished.

    But, am I the only one that found the irony in her claiming that Len is the one who is oblivious to the things around him when using the Fire, after she said that she never knows what the special offers are, what is on billboards when driving and who was just passed when jogging?

    I can tell Len knows how to keep harmony in his marriage when he let THAT go by without comment!

    Posted 01 Jan 2012 at 3:09 pm
  6. Pat Montgomery wrote:

    I feel that Amazon needs to fix the firmware on the Touch so that the swipes and taps actually accomplish what they are supposed to do. (Turn the page accurately) It is very annoying to have a device that registers only 2 out of 4 taps. The Kindle Fire that my husband just bought had the same problem until the new update.

    Recently, I bought a slightly used Sony PRS 950 Daily Edition Touch screen with a 7 inch screen from last years models. Page turns are perfect on it with a quick swipe, so I know that this can be accomplished on a touch screen. Amazon needs to fix the current Touch problems.

    I am with Darlene in that I have never taken a note on anything on my Kindle. I do use the keyboard for making collections and doing searches, so there is no way I would want that $79 Kindle keyboard.

    I have been tempted to send my Kindle Touch back and buy last years Kindle3 Keyboard 3G model so I have the page turning buttons back. It is a more seamless way of turning the page and staying inside the book. The touch page turns do mess up my concentration in the book.

    Posted 02 Jan 2012 at 3:15 am
  7. Pat Montgomery wrote:

    I forgot to mention that Darlene needs to check her “Special Offers” every day or two. I have saved a bit of money on several items that I would have purchased anyway. This past week alone there was a $3 credit towards any video rental with Amazon Prime Streaming. You could use that credit to watch something on your Kindle Fire. I also got a free current book from Audible for one book that I have wanted to listen to in audio. Right around Christmas there was a $5 off any $10 dollar purchase on Amazon. Lots of offers for people who travel. Quite a few savings so far on my $99 Kindle Touch with Offers.

    Posted 04 Jan 2012 at 3:52 am
  8. Hattie wrote:

    Just found your blog and podcast. Really informative and enjoyable. The Sandisk app is terrific. I was really puzzled about where stuff was on my Kindle Fire and how much room it was taking up. Memory Zone solves that problem nicely.
    For me Kindle 3 is the perfect reader. I knew I would not want a touch-screen reader with only wi-fi. I take extensive notes and do a lot of underlining when reading, and a touch screen would drive me nuts.
    One way you could find domestic harmony in spite of the Fire is to preview Netflix downloads on it. Then you could watch movies together in the evening. That’s what I do. My husband and I don’t always like the same things, so I make an effort to find movies that we both will enjoy.
    It’s fun to put together evening programs of entertainment, with a cartoon, a sitcom, and a feature film. And don’t forget the popcorn.

    Posted 04 Jan 2012 at 2:34 pm
  9. Allen wrote:

    I sent my Kindle Fire back because I bought it to read PDF files, of which I have many. I was frustrated with the action of reading. I had to pinch to get the font larger and then lost that setting when I advanced to a new page. Using the Adobe App was better, but not a lot better. I visited the Apple Store and got a demo of their iPad2 and a double tap anywhere in a column instantly expanded the column, picture or object to the width of the screen. Much better. It is also larger so the font becomes easier to read than the fire, although I could read the fire I was still annoyed by the klutzy manner of the touch screen. Of course Amazon then improved that as soon as I sent it back and the iPad2 rumors all popped up with new models coming out as soon as my iPad2 showed up. I had ordered a refurb model, bottom of the line, for $419 plus tax. I am happy with that so far but we will see. I dislike reading the PDFs on my computer screen but only because I spend too much time in that particular chair as it is. I prefer the living room with my feet propped up.

    Posted 04 Jan 2012 at 3:32 pm
  10. Shannon L. wrote:

    Mary, you have me thinking. I hate having to take my gloves off to answer my phone. I’m pondering if the touch might be sensitive enough to use with gloves on. Just in case I get bored while shoveling snow.

    Posted 04 Jan 2012 at 6:01 pm