Short version of question:
I know there are some avid readers in this forum so I'm curious to know where this technology currently sits with you all.
Long Winded Rant, (only for those who care to listen):
With a price tag of $450 plus for the newest Kindle, I'm having a hard time justifying the craving to satisfy my sci-fi movie lovin urge to buy an e-book reader. I mean, I can read a paper book from the library for free and even when I buy new, that's a lot of books I could have bought. At first it seems ridiculous.
However, if I were a student and all of my text books were available electronically, I could start to see the benefits. Carry one lightweight object instead of a backpack full of brick heavy books. Add in search functionality and it starts to get appealing. However, scribbling in the margins becomes more limited and doodling is no longer an option.
The new Kindle DX with an 8.5x11 like screen seems to be going after this market. Still, the price is daunting considering I could buy a notebook for the same price that reads e-books but does soooo much more.
The Sony e-book reader is cheaper but lacks the power of Amazon behind it. However, it supports more open formats and you can read free ebooks from Google Books. That sounds very appealing until you realize that only a very small percentage of Google Books are actually available in full text. Pretty much just books that have gone into the public domain and a very small number of authors/publishers who signed their rights away. Still, 'cheaper plus freebies' is nice.
So, although I crave the coolness of walking around like I'm on the Starship Enterprise, it seems to me, I'm just not ready to invest that much for such a limited machine. I'm sure more integrated uses will come in the future. I am almost positive I'll be a buyer once someone comes out with more of a tablet, netbook, style box that has a minimum of the following features.
thin profile, color screen for illustrations, browses the web, & emails (wirelessly of course), plays music files, free hand note taking or drawing with a stylus (I'm a visual learner & designer). Later on I expect full PC functionality and GPS.
Actually, I guess what I really want is a SUPER SUPER slim tablet, laptop. I'd pay more for that actually!
An e-book reader only that will encourage me to spend even more money by having to buy their proprietary books from their e-library, wellll... you'd pretty much have to give me the unit for nearly free, then I'd be glad to by an e-book and save some trees. I'd even pay a hundred or so to save some trees, as that price point seems more befitting a device that is so single purposed.
Actually, that's the one reason I hope it catches on and a universal (always grandfatherable) e-book format is created. Paper production on this Earth needs to slow to a crawl.
OK, long winded rant, but anyone care to say why they have, will or will not buy an e-book reader? If so, which will it be?
With great power comes Awesome irresponsibility.