How New Fire HDX 8.9 Mimics Paper with Dynamic Light Control

In this video clip made at the Amazon new product launch today in New York City, Jon Oakes, director of product management for Kindle, explains Dynamic Light Control. This clever capability enables the new Fire HDX to change the background of a book’s page to adjust to available light in a way similar to the effect of light on a paper page.

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First Impressions of the New Kindle Lineup

Len and KindlesAs my flight from New York approaches Denver International and the media embargo ends, I want to share impressions from today’s Amazon’s media demonstration of the new Kindles. My group of about 12 journalists—one of several such gatherings throughout the day—convened at Milk Studios, 450 West 15th Street, for a little more than two hours of presentations and time to try the devices and chat ask questions. It was a beautiful, sunny day on Manhattan, and we began on the top-floor patio with a view of the Hudson River next to a table with stickie buns, coffee, juice and other treats.

I will hold my observations about the new Kindle Fire HDX 8.9 and the Fire HD models for later, because I want to focus here on the new Kindles, the brand-new Kindle Voyage and the new and improved basic Kindle.

As I’ve mentioned several times in recent months, I expected Amazon to step up this fall with a serious refresh of the eInk Kindles, based on comments by executives during the year. These guys are not just going through the motions when it comes to pressing ahead with innovations on the Kindle dedicated eReaders.

One clue was that the first demo station was for the Kindles. They were not an afterthought. They were first out of the chute.

As for the devices themselves, I found them very impressive.

First impressions tell a lot, and when Senior VP Dave Limp handed me one of the Voyages as we sat in a circle in couches off the patio, I fell in love with it. The moment reminded me of the day in Boston when Amazon’s Jay Marine reached into his suit jacket pocket and pulled out a gray Kindle Keyboard, five years and four generations ago. Man, I thought. This thing is sweet!

Likewise with the Voyage. It’s thin, light, and the screen jumps up at you in 300 pixels per inch splendor, with a brighter built-in light. As with each improvement in eInk screen technology, this one makes the previous one look old-fashioned and muddled. We’re getting really close to paper here.

The Next and Previous Page controls move off the screen on the Voyage, to the bezel, but we’re not talking buttons here, as in older models of the Kindle. Which means we are not talking things that go click in the night, when your bed partner may be trying to sleep while you plow ahead in War and Peace until you’re ready to sleep yourself. I slight squeeze of the bezel changes the page, and you know you’ve done it right when you feel a little haptic love tap on your finger. Customers are going to love this, I’m sure Amazon execs are saying, and I believe they’re right. I did my best to accept the elimination of Next/Previous physical controls on the Touch and the Paperwhite, but I am quite happy on this new Kindle to have the screen be left for nothing but the story.

I care about the basic Kindle, because we’ve shipped more than a thousand of them to U.S. Troops deployed overseas through E-Books for Troops. We plan to purchase one last group of basic Kindles and donate them to a VA Hospital as we wind down the program. With this new $79 basic Kindle on offer, the last Soldiers will be getting a terrific eReader and not an after-thought.

I will of course pre-order a Kindle Voyage tonight, but that’s what I do. I’m not saying, in my enthusiasm for the improvement in the device, that an upgrade from the Paperwhite is obvious. Especially since the significant software improvements announced today will be rolled out to the Paperwhite as well.

One of the most notable OS innovations for the Kindles is named Word Wise. It will be great for readers learning English and kids learning to read, because it hovers definitions over difficult words right in-line with the book’s text. There is a slider control that determines how many words will have hints. You can tap on one of the hints to bring up the full definition.

Wise Words reminds me of Vocabulary Builder, an earlier gee-whiz tool to help readers improve their comprehension. I love how the Kindle team presses into raw invention with these capabilities. They don’t all change the world, but a few of them will, especially for individual readers with specific needs.

X-Ray gets expanded powers of seeing into the bones of a book in the new software. There is now a tab for images, so you can scroll through all the graphics in a book. And graphics, by the way, look fantastic on the higher-resolution Voyage display.

Goodreads gets closer to our reading on the Kindle with the new OS. You can access and update your reading status from within the book, something I’ve thought would be nice to have.

So all in all, today was a great day for those of us who may love tablets but continue to have a soft spot for the device that really did change the way we read, the original gray and white Kindle—now much improved, standing proud, and clearly still the darling of the team of innovators and dreamers that conceived it and keeps on making it better.


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What’s New Tonight from Amazon – Summary of New Kindles and Fires

Len with FiresHere are the new devices you can pre-order as of tonight (Wednesday, September 17th) at 9 p.m. ET at the Amazon home page:

Kindle Voyage$199 WiFi and $269 3G.

This seventh-generation eReader is the thinnest, lightest, brightest, and smartest Kindle to date. You press the bezel for silent movement to the next or previous page, and you feel a friendly haptic response as the page turns. The screen is 39 percent brighter. It automatically adjusts to surrounding light. And—get this—it dims gradually after you start reading in the dark, matching how your eyes take time adjust to darkness.

The “wow” that I experienced holding a Voyage at today’s embargoed media briefing in New York City reminded me of the first time that I held a Kindle Keyboard. That was five years ago, at the birth of the third generation of Kindles. The Kindle 2 immediately seemed bigger, clunkier, and old-fashioned. The same thing happened to the beloved Paperwhite that I brought to New York when I placed it on a table next to the new Kindle in town.

New Basic Kindle – $79

Amazon today confirmed that it’s serious about making Kindle technology available to as many book lovers as possible by giving an impressive update to the entry-level dedicated eReader, called simply “Kindle.” It has twice the storage, and its processor is 20 percent faster than the previous basic Kindle.

The most noticeable improvement is a full touch screen that replaces the pain-in-the-neck five-way controller. No more pressing up, down, left, or right to move the cursor across an alphabet grid in order to enter text. Just tap the virtual keyboard. The updated Kindle can do all the new software tricks of the Voyage and Paperwhite, which remains in the lineup as the new middle child.

The new basic Kindle’s screen isn’t as omigod bright and contrasty as the Voyage’s, and there is no built-in light bathing its screen. But it’s going to be great for a kid’s first Kindle or a beach reader you toss in your bag with sunscreen, Frisbee, and goggles.

Kindle Fire HDX 8.9” – $379 WiFi 16 GB  , $429 WiFi 32 GB , $479 WiFi 64 GB

This new HDX is really thin and light–13.2 ounces or 20 percent lighter than an iPad Air. The tech specs impress, as follows: It’s the first tablet powered by the most advanced quad-core Snapdragon 805 processor, and the graphics engine is 70 percent faster than the previous-generation Fire HDX. At the demo table, the new HDX seemed fast, fluid, brilliantly colorful–and thin.

For book reading, the new HDX has a clever way of taking another step toward the holy grail of parity with paper books. It’s called Dynamic Light Control, which changes the white point of the display based on the ambient lighting. The demo units that we saw gradually adjusted their appearance after you tapped on a book in the carousel. The idea seems to be that a book on the HDX will look different in a soft, yellow light in your den than it will in glaring fluorescent light in an office. You won’t see this on the HDX until later this year, though, because it will arrive as part of a free, over-the-air software update.

The new HDX is the first tablet with Dolby Atmos, Amazon execs told us. We put on headphones to hear how it sounded in an action movie where all sorts of stuff was blowing up and moving around us with eerie effect. Dolby Atmos is rolling out in some movies but not others, and you’ll be able to hear its magic on the HDX 8.9.

The HDX’s Battery life—up to 12 hours for reading, surfing the web, watching video or listening to music—gets a boost from Smart Suspend, which develops a profile specific to your device based on when it is typically not in use. That’s when it will turn the wireless off to conserve power, but it will sneak back onto the net now and then to grab new emails or app notifications while you’re asleep.

The HDX 8.9 can be paired with the coolest Bluetooth keyboard I’ve seen. It costs $59.99, weighs just 7 ounces, and is 4.8 mm thin. It also has a trackpad, so you don’t have to switch from typing to tapping the screen. You can place the keyboard with the HDX inside the new Origami Cover ($54.99), which also serves as a landscape or portrait stand. Everything snaps together with a satisfying magnetic click.

Note: The Fire HDX 7”, which happens to be my favorite Amazon tablet, will receive an update to the Fire OS 4 software, named Sangria and based on Android KitKat. But sadly there are no hardware improvements for the 7-inch HDX.

Kindle Fire HD 6” 8 GB ($99) , HD 6″ 16 GB $119, and HD 7” 8 GB ($139), HD 7″ 16 GB ($159)

For the Fire HD, Amazon played a game it loves to play—how much better can we make a device that someone is now selling for too much money? In this case the target was the low end of smaller tablets. Customers have complained to Amazon that these devices, made by other companies, are unreliable, have lousy performance, and sound crummy.

So these new Fire HDs are tough. When you drop an iPad mini and a new Fire HD to a concrete floor from a meter high, the iPad mini breaks apart twice as often as the Fire HD, we were told. Lesser competitors fail 20 times more often than the Fire. We watched a video in which one hapless Brand X tablet literally exploded into pieces when it hit the concrete. The Fire HD bounced like a superball with no harm done.

I was surprised to learn that this new tablet will not have the amazingly great Mayday support offered on the Fire Phone and the HDX tablets. Customers love Mayday, as Amazon likes to say. But it’s obviously very expensive to provide year-round 24/7 video support with hands-on control of the device if desired. So when you are aiming at an ambitious price point, something’s gotta give. You can still get fast, smart, convenient tech support for the Fire HD by chat and phone. But still. I suggested to Dave Limp, Amazon senior vice president for Kindle devices, that customers might be willing to pay for a Mayday premium on the Fire HD, so we’ll see.

Kindle Fire HD Kids Edition 6” ($149) and 7” ($189)

Based on the same Fire HD devices, this package for kids includes an impressive two-year, no-questions-asked guarantee. In other words, if Junior feeds his HD to the family basset hound, Amazon will replace it with a new or refurbished unit.

The Kids Edition HD also comes with a year of Amazon FreeTime Unlimited, a $120 value that provides unlimited access to 5,000 books, movies, TV shows, educational apps, and games.

It doesn’t mention this in the press releases we were given, but during the demo I thought the Amazon rep said the Kids Edition HD comes with a free protective case in pink, green or blue. You could probably drop this one from two meters above concrete and the Fire HD might survive.

Summary and Note

All of these new products are available for pre-order, with shipment in October. I will update the links for the specific products as soon as possible. For now, please feel free to explore them using this link, which is coded with my Amazon Associates information, so if you use them to make your purchase, it will benefit the podcast.

I am writing this post on the flight from LaGuardia to Denver, which is due to arrive at 9 p.m. ET just as the media embargo comes off. As soon as Frontier 507 touches down at DIA I will fire up a Hot Spot on the Fire Phone and do my best to get this information faster than a speeding quad-core Snapdragon 805 processor.

And of course, this week’s episode of the Kindle Chronicles will be chock full of interviews, color commentary, and more analysis of today’s gaggle of great new Kindles and Fires.


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TKC 319 Jim Duncan


Executive Director of the Colorado Library Consortium

Interview starts at 16:26

We could go back as a group of libraries, hundreds of libraries across Colorado, to a Big Five publisher and say, “We’re ready to buy your content directly, and here’s the way it looks: You make your content exposed and available in our marketplace. The collection development librarians, the people who make those decisions of purchasing, go into the marketplace and–click, click, click—they can check all the various titles they want to purchase and the number of copies.

Show Notes and Links:


“Amazon’s Next Kindle Paperwhite To Feature 300 ppi Screen, Better Typography, Arrive Early Next Year” by Matthew Panzarino at TechCrunch – November 24, 2013

“Amazon Cuts Struggling Phone’s Price to 99 Cents” by David Streitfeld at The New York Times – September 8, 2014.

“Younger Americans and Public Libraries” Summary of Findings from Pew Research Internet Project – September 10, 2014

“Millennials Read and Use Libraries as Much as Their Parents, Study Finds” at Digital Book World – September 10, 2014

Tech Tips

More about collections

shortcut to the new Manage Your Content and Devices page:

Interview with Jim Duncan

Colorado Library Consortium

“Two States Creating State-Wide Library E-book Collections” by Chirstyna Hunter at Public Libraries Online – September 4, 2014

eVoke 2.0 eBook Project in Colorado


3M Library Systems

Douglas County (Colo.) Libraries

Jamie LaRue, executive director of the Douglas County Libraries on The Kindle Chronicles – July 12, 2013

Marmot Library Network




“Amazon, Publishers, and Readers” by Clay Shirky at Medium – September 12, 2014

David Vandagriff’s post on the Shirky article – September 12, 2014

Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations by Clay Shirky

Cognitive Surplus: Creativity and Generosity in a Connected Age by Clay Shirky

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Persepctive” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.


In Memory of Capt. Jeffrey L. Atkinson

I am dedicating TKC 319 to the memory of Jeff Atkinson, who passed away on September 11th this week in Casper, Wyoming. He was a son of my friend and E-Books for Troops helper Tom Atkinson, and he will be missed as a Captain in the Casper Fire Department, devoted husband and father of two boys, and a man of innate generosity and good humor. Jeff died after a long struggle with cancer. He was 48.

When his fellow fire fighters learned that news of Jeff’s passing was arriving by social media, they fetched his wife Kristen and then his sons Eddie and Cristopf at their school in a fire truck and took them to the Hospice facility, where the family then rode in the fire truck as it followed the hearse to the mortuary for cremation. Until the funeral, Jeff’s ashes will be honored at the fire station where he served. “If they go out to a fire, they are going to take him with them,” Darlene told me by phone tonight.

Darlene and I will attend Jeff’s funeral next week in Casper. In lieu of flowers, Jeff requested donations to the Atkinson Scholarship Fund at U.S. Bank, 435 West 1st Street, Casper WY 82601.

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Amazon drops price on Fire Phone to 99 cents with 2-year contract

Screen Shot 2014-09-08 at 12.48.11 PM

Amazon today announced a pretty amazing price drop for the Fire Phone - from $199 (the price I paid for mine on launch day) to 99 cents. When I first saw the price in an email from Amazon’s PR department, I thought it was a typo. Cutting the price in half would have been newsworthy. But 99 cents? Really?

I guess so. The timing is no coincidence, with Apple set to announce details of the iPhone 6 tomorrow. Of course I would have liked it if the Fire had cost 99 cents on June 18th, when I bought mine. But if I’d known the price was going to fall that dramatically today, I’m sure I would have paid full price to buy one of the first ones.

In any event, I hope they sell a ton of them. I can say after using mine for more than two months, this is a lot of phone for 99 cents!

If you’ve been waiting for a dramatic price decrease to buy a Fire Phone, today’s your day. And if you purchase your Fire from this page using the ad in the upper right corner or this link, it will of course help The Kindle Chronicles through an Amazon Associates commission.

Here is the full press release, which also contains news that the Fire is now on sale in the U.K. and Germany. So all in all, a big day for this smart little phone with Dynamic Perspective and Firefly.

Amazon Fire Phone Now 99 Cents with Two-Year Contract

Plus, one year of Prime membership included

Free unlimited cloud storage for photos

World-class customer support with Mayday—24×7, 365 days a year

32GB Storage—Standard

SEATTLE–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Sep. 8, 2014– (NASDAQ: AMZN)—Dynamic Perspective, Firefly, world-class customer support with Mayday, free unlimited cloud storage for photos, 32GB of storage—and, for a limited time, customers get 12 months of Prime membership with Fire phone, which includes unlimited streaming of tens of thousands of movies and TV episodes from Prime Instant Video, access to over a million songs to download or stream from Prime Music, over 500,000 books to borrow from Kindle Owners’ Lending Library and free two-day shipping on tens of millions of items. Now there’s another great reason to buy Fire—it’s just99 cents with a two-year contract. Customers can purchase Fire on, and in AT&T stores nationwide.

“Fire is now 99 cents with a two-year contract, plus customers get one full year of Prime included,” said Ian Freed, Vice President, Amazon Devices. “With access to all of the Prime content, Mayday, 32GB of memory and free unlimited cloud storage for photos, plus the exclusive Dynamic Perspective and Firefly features, Fire is another example of the value Amazon delivers to customers.”

See what Amazon Fire customers are saying:

  • “The best part of the phone is the integration with Prime – I’ve switched all of my iTunes music over to Amazon Music and have bought a few albums from my phone. The sound from the included headphones is amazing. I’ve watched some movies and read some books – all synced to my Kindle Fire HDX and the movies with my Fire TV.”
  • “Mayday: I feel this truly separates this phone from every other phone in the market. It’s like having someone available 24×7 to help you out with your phone…and, there is no charge for that ‘ever.’”
  • “Love it, better than the iPhone I had, Better pictures and better screen…My wife is switching from her iPhone 5 to Fire since she has checked out my FIRE.”
  • “I’ve had three Kindle Fire tablets, and this Fire phone hooks seamlessly to their ecosystem of books and videos, which I use heavily in my professional work so that’s important to me.”
  • “The Firefly feature is fun, and the camera takes fabulous pictures and videos.”
  • “If you’re an Amazon Prime user, it can’t get better than this. The support for the Amazon ecosystem is amazing.”

Fire is the only smartphone with Dynamic Perspective and Firefly, two breakthrough technologies that allow you to see and interact with the world through a whole new lens. Fire features an advanced, 13MP rear-facing camera with backside illumination, LED flash, 5-element f/2.0 lens, Optical Image Stabilization (OIS), and high dynamic range (HDR) capabilities for beautiful, crisp photos, even in low-light conditions. Fire also includes a 2.1MP front-facing camera, and photos taken with Fire receive free, unlimited cloud storage.

Additionally, the Amazon Appstore has seen tremendous growth with the rate of app submissions to the Appstore more than doubling in the weeks following the Fire phone launch in the U.S. Recent additions include: Fly Delta, Bank of America, At Bat, Tetris Blitz, Uno With Friends, Venmo, and World Series of Poker as well as the tens of thousands of others already available for Fire – Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Flixster, Instagram, Pandora, Pinterest, Spotify, StubHub, Twitter, and WhatsApp. Customers are also enjoying the use of Dynamic Perspective within apps and games—3 of the top 7 downloaded apps and games, incorporate features of Dynamic Perspective. Learn more about the Fire developer SDK at

In the U.S., Fire is available exclusively on AT&T – the nation’s most reliable 4G LTE network. Fire with 32GB is available for 99 cents with a two-year contract or $0 down and $18.75 per month (for 24 months) with AT&T NEXT 18. Customers can purchase Fire at, or AT&T stores nationwide. For more information, please visit


Amazon opened on the World Wide Web in July 1995. The company is guided by three principles: customer obsession rather than competitor focus, passion for invention, and long-term thinking. Customer reviews, 1-Click shopping, personalized recommendations, Prime, Fulfillment by Amazon, AWS, Kindle Direct Publishing, Kindle, Fire phone, Fire tablets, and Fire TV are some of the products and services pioneered by Amazon.

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TKC 318 Sara Nelson

Sara Nelson, Headshot

Editorial Director of

Interview starts at 20:43

On the Amazon book team’s pick for September’s spotlight debut title, Fives and Twenty-Fives by Michael Pitre: “Books about the war, any war, certainly a war that is current are very, very hard sells to customers. I think people often feel like they don’t want to read it, because they’re reading it in the newspaper or they’re hearing about it on the news, but this book transcended the genre.”

Show Notes and Links:


Basic Kindle without Special Offers out of stock at

“Amazon Invites Children’s Book Authors to Kindle Direct Publishing, Rolls Out Kids’ Book Creator Application” by Sarah Perez at TechCrunch – September 3, 2014

Amazon press release announcing KDP Kids – September 3, 2014

Tech Tips

Peggo app for creating mp3 files from YouTube and Soundcloud audio

Critical Margins Podcast episode 12: How to Write for the Cloud

Interview with Sara Nelson Best Books of the Month – September

The Bone Clocks: A Novel by David Mitchell – September Spotlight pick by Amazon’s book editors

Fives and Twenty-Fives by Michael Pitre – September Debut Spotlight pick

The Yellow Birds by Kevin Powers

Redeployment by Phil Klay

Bill Cosby: His Life and Times by Mark Whitaker

I’ll Drink to That: A Life in Style, with a Twist by Betty Halbreich with Rebecca Paley

Sara Nelson’s interview with Betty Halbreich at Omnivoracious blog – September 4, 2014

What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions by Randall Munroe

The Big Fall Books Preview at

Amazon release on Big Fall Books – August 19, 2014

Revival: A Novel by Stephen King – set for release November 11, 2014

Edge of Eternity: Book Three of the Century Trilogy by Ken Follett – set for release September 16, 2014

Not That Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She’s “Learned” by Lena Dunham – set for release September 30, 2014


“Biblio Mysteries” recommended by listener Richard Marpet:

The Bookman’s Tale: A Novel of Obsession by Charlie Lovett

The Bookseller (Hugo Marston) by Mark Pryor

Ex-Libris by Ross King (Kindle edition not available)

The Club Dumas by Arturo Perez-Reverte

The Shadow of the Wind (The Cemetery of Forgotten Book 1) by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Dido Hoare Mysteries by Marianne MacDonald

Hardcover by Wayne Warga (Kindle edition not available)

The Kindle Chronicles app at Amazon’s Appstore for Android

Alcoholics Anonymous 4th Edition

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Persepctive” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD. 

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

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TKC 317 Julie Blattberg


Open Road Media’s executive director of consumer engagement

Interview starts at 15:13

Who put the “social” in social media? That’s one human being making a connection with another human being—so Bill Gates read someone else’s copy of the book [Business Adventures by John Brooks] a million years ago, and it made an impression. That’s what social media is. The “media” part just amplifies it, puts it in front of an audience that didn’t see it five minutes ago.

Show Notes and Links:


Movo WS1 Furry Outdoor Microphone Windscreen Muff for Small Compact Microphones – $9.99 at



All about Twitch

“Amazon gains valuable entertainment asset with purchase of Twitch” by Andrea Chang and Salvador Rodriguez at The Los Angeles Times – August 25, 2014

YoDa vs. Leenock (Tvt) – IEM Toronto 2014

“Freshman class at Denver’s South High go textbook-free; 9th graders to use Kindle Fire tablets” by Eric Kahnert and Brian Hernandez at 7News Denver – August 25, 2014

Goodreads announces you can preview Kindle books (U.S. Members)

Tech Tip

Interview with Julie Blattberg

Open Road Media

Jane Friedman, CEO of Open Road, on The Kindle Chronicles episode 265

Open Road Media titles available for free via Kindle Unlimited subscription

Open Road’s newsletters

Sign-up pages for free Open Road Newsletters: Early Bird Books,

Early Bird Books on Twitter and Facebook

Open Road on TumblrTwitterFacebookPinterestGoogle PlusYouTube, Goodreads, and LinkedIn

Abelardo Morrell

Business Adventures: Twelve Classic Tales from the World of Wall Street by John Brooks

“The Best Business Book I’ve Ever Read” at Bill Gates’s blog – July 12, 2014

“Twitter by the Numbers: Size matters, but what about engagement?” by Julie Blattberg at Publishers Weekly – September 9, 2011

Where’d You Go, Bernadette: A Novel by Maria Semple

The Color Purple by Alice Walker


The Big Fall Books Preview at

Amazon release on Big Fall Books – August 19, 2014

Next Week’s Guest

Sara Nelson, Editorial Director at

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Persepctive” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

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TKC 316 Ripley MacDonald

Ripley fromAmazon’s Director of Student Programs

Interview starts at 15:59

Everything that’s available on Amazon is available at the Purdue Student Store. The way to think about it is, once you’ve activated the co-branding or entered Purdue mode, you are really experiencing a personalized version of the Amazon site. But the products, selection, and pricing are all the same. One example of the personalization, the most obvious one, is the branding in the upper right-hand corner, but if you go to a textbook detail page, a textbook that’s adopted at Purdue, you’ll actually see information on that page about which classes use that book at Purdue. So we use this personalization to drive features and experiences like that for students.

Show Notes and Links:


The Legend of Korra on Prime Instant Video


Amazon’s Readers United web site

Transformations: Stories from Authors, Innovators, and Small Businesses Thriving on Amazon – free

Nickel Plated by Aric Davis

“Amazon’s Fan Fiction Site, Kindle Worlds, Is Flopping, but Why?” by Emma Cueto at Bustle – August 19, 2014

Tech Tip

Books with Narration in Kindle Unlimited

OtterBox Defender Series Protective Case for Kindle Paperwhite – $69.95

Interview with Ripley MacDonald

“Purdue, Amazon to offer students savings on textbooks, provide first-ever on-campus pickup services” at Purdue University News – August 13, 2014

Amazon Campus information page

Purdue Boilermaker accessories at the Purdue Amazon Store

“Books from Amazon in Person” by Carl Straumsheim at Inside Higher Ed – August 14, 2014


Toontastic iPad app by Launchpad Toys

“Dr Scott & the Robot” cartoon created with my grandson


Post by Andromeda Romano-Lax at 49 Writers

Steam video games site

Next Week’s Guest

Julie Blattberg, executive director of consumer engagement at Open Road Media

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Persepctive” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

CORRECTION: The audio says this episode is for Friday, August 29, 2014. I got a week ahead of myself. It’s actually for August 22.

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TKC 315 Jason Boog


Author of Born Reading (with daughter Olive)

Interview starts at 11:27

I knew then that I had come up with a pretty good mix. I knew she had a print book that she liked, and I knew she had an audiobook that she liked, and I knew she had something on the iPad that she could do that would help expand that experience. Anything that you can do to give your child more that they love, to make that experience of reading continue—anything you can do to do that, that’s the important thing.

Show Notes and Links:


“Purdue, Amazon to offer students savings on textbooks, provide first-ever on-campus pickup services” at Purdue University News – August 13, 2014

Amazon Campus information page

Purdue Boilermaker accessories at the Purdue Amazon Store

“Books from Amazon in Person” by Carl Straumsheim at Inside Higher Ed – August 14, 2014

“Bookstore Sales Fell 7.9% in First Half of 2014” at Publishers Weekly – August 13, 2014

Tech Tip

Mayday Frequently Asked Questions

OneLook Dictionary Search

Legal definition of monopoly

Interview with Jason Boog

Jason Boog’s web site

Born Reading web site

Born Reading: Bringing Up Bookworms in a Digital Age—From Picture Books to eBooks and Everything in Between by Jason Boog – $10.37 on Kindle

F Is for Farm by Roger Priddy

American Sign Language sign for “more”

LeVar Burton’s Reading Rainbow website

Elephant and Piggie books by Mo Wilems

Toontastic iPad app by Launchpad Toys

Toontastic Jr. Pirates Puppet Theater

Disney’s Frozen on Amazon Instant Video

Frozen Little Golden Book (Disney)

Tchaikovsky: Album for the Young, The Snow Queen at iTunes and Amazon mp3 store

Hans Andersen’s Fairy Tales – First Series (including “The Snow Queen”) at Project Gutenberg

My Story app for iPad

“How – and why – to turn your kid into a bookworm” by Lisa Napoli at KCRW blog (includes audio of interview including Olive)

For questions about anything in Jason Boog’s new book, he invites you to email him at JasonBoog AT

Bartleby & Co. by Enrique Vila-Matas – $9.99 on Kindle, $13.13 in paperback

The Fancy Nancy series by Jane O’Connor on Kindle Audible, and OverDrive


100 Children’s Books to Read in a Lifetime – compiled by the Amazon Book Editors

Goodreads readers’ ranking of the 100 Children’s books

Open Road Media newsletter subscriptions

Simon & Schuster’s Off the Shelf newsletter

Open Road Media titles available through Kindle Unlimited

Next Week’s Guest

Ripley MacDonald, Amazon Director of Student Programs

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Persepctive” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

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TKC 314 Juli Monroe


Editor of TeleRead

Interview starts at 18:34

I think Amazon has done a better PR job. I think that they’re going to end up getting what they want, because I think Hachette needs them more than Amazon needs Hachette.

Show Notes and Links:


“Safari Begins Next Chapter as an O’Reilly Media Company” by Andrew Savikas at Safari’s blog – August 4, 2014

“O’Reilly Acquires Pearson’s Stake in Safari Books Online Ebook Subscription Service, Now Sole Owner” at Digital Book World – August 4, 2014

“Sony admits defeat in e-reader battle with Amazon” by Matthew Sparkes at The Telegraph – August 5, 2014

“David Streitfeld – An Embarrassment to the New York Times” by J. A. Konrath – August 8, 2014

“Plot Thickens as 900 Writers Battle Amazon” (excerpts of Streitfeld piece at The Passive Voice blog, with commentary by David P. Vandagriff) – August 8, 2014

“Authors Are Being Hoodwinked” by Hugh Howey – August 8, 2014

“Amazon offers Prime members video credit for slower shipping” by Lance Whitney at CNET – July 30, 2014

CORRECTION: In the audio, I mention that Amazon expects a net loss of about $800 million in the current quarter. That’s actually the high end of a range the company described for the expected quarterly loss – from $410 million to $810 million.

“New Kindle Helps Readers Show Off By Shouting Title of Book Loudly and Repeatedly” video at The Onion

Tech Tip

OtterBox Defender protective case for Paperwhite – $59.99 at Note: I neglected to mention this in the audio. The case arrived, and it’s certainly good protection if you plan on throwing your Paperwhite around in a boat or something. For anything like ordinary use, it’s overkill, and much heavier than the standard Amazon Paperwhite case. Well-designed, though, and perhaps useful in some situations. – still in progress, a potentially very helpful way to access your Kindle annotations

Interview with Juli Monroe

1 to 1 Discovery for business coaching services


The Case of the Reincarnated Lover (The Warlock Case Files Book 3) by Juli Monroe – $3.99 on Kindle

The Enthusiastic Networker by Juli Monroe – $5.99 on Kindle

Baen Books

Tor and Forge imprints of Macmillan

“Will the acquisition of Booklamp make Apple a credible Amazon competitor?” by Juli Monroe at TeleRead – August 6, 2014

“The Third Front – Apple Enters the Fray” by William Richards – July 31, 2014


Here are some recommended comiXology titles, with comments by listener Casey Huebner:

Mouse Guard – Lovely stories of a field of mice, their civilization, and war against predators.

Edison Rex – This comes from MonkeyBrain Comics. They are a digital only house that helps independent stories get told. Edison Rex is a classic superman story, but what if the bad guy discovers that the superhero really is a ticking time bomb sent to destroy us?

Batman – DC rebooted all their comics in 2011. This is Batman #1 from the reboot. Oh it is so good. Writer Scott Snyder and Artist Greg Capullo have been at the top of their game for the last three years on this book. The batman book is quite often the biggest seller of the month.

Batman ’66 - I didnt want to include two Batman comics, but I have a reason. First, this comic is great because it is the campy 60’s TV show version of Batman. Secondly, it is digital-only, and what they did instead of panning the comic from panel to panel is they have the art stay the same and the word bubbles pop up. Really a great new way to do comics.

Daredevil and Hawkeye – I am not a Marvel comics fan. I like the idea of the characters and the movies more than the regular comics. But I have to include some Marvel. These two titles have a lot more going for them then any of the X-Men or Avengers comics. although we are getting a new Thor, and it’s a woman. So I may have to buy into the hype and pick that one up.

The Walking Dead – The best Zombie comic out there, it’s what spawned the show. And the first issue is free.

Saga - Ok for mature readers only, but it is one of the most critically acclaimed comics out there currently. Game of thrones in space.

Godzilla Half Century War – This is kinda the best Godzilla story line ever!

Pax Romana - This is a great great story that I wish was just a book, as the comic is unnecessary. What if the Vatican discovered time travel and sent 5,000 elite troops back in time in order to ensure the domination of the Roman Catholic church?

And for the Fire Phone: Dropbox!

And the winner of the Nexus 7 is…

I used to select the 253rd name on my list of 276 people who have signed up to receive the free Kindle Chronicles email newsletter. If you were a subscriber as of Friday afternoon, August 8th, you were eligible to win the Nexus 7. I announce the winner at the end of this episode.

Music for this episode of the podcast was provided by my talented cousins staying at the cottage next door at Ocean Park. Thank you, Stuart, Jim, Andy, Gail, and Bruce!

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