(I’ve deleted and started this post over five times now. For some reason I can’t put words together about this topic I’m happy with.)
The Kindle 2 doesn’t appeal to much more than the Kindle did. Though I can see some uses for e-readers, and there are good arguments for their advantages, especially in saving printing and distributions costs for publishers, I really like reading novels.
What I’d like is not a book reader but a magazine reader. I actually feel guilty reading newspapers and magazines because I’ll often only read a few articles. I look at all that paper that was printed for my to read just a small percentage of the words. Sure, most of the articles are online, but the Web isn’t a great place to read newspapers or magazines. You get a column of text with maybe some embedded photos. None of the nice layout you get on the real deal. You often don’t get the sidebars or inset graphs, or if you do, they’re squeezed into what the Web can do.
I’d like to see a device with some size to it, maybe 7″×10″ or so with a color screen that can display a full page of magazine text. Give it pinch-to-zoom like the iPhone has for smaller text, and a sensor to let it flip to landscape for double-page spreads. Then you just need a subscription service (I think the Kindle already has this) where you can pull down each new edition of a publication when it comes out. Ditto for comic books. Lots of time is being spent trying to replicate comics on the Web, but reading tiny lettered text on a computer monitor feels unnatural. On a handheld device I think it’d work very nicely.
In other words, someone please invent this.