Tag Archives: kindle


A Quick ProfHack: Kindling the Presentation



A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of speaking at the Digital Humanities Summer Institute at the University of Victoria. If you haven’t attended (and didn’t have your Twitter stream flooded with #DHSI2014 tweets), DHSI is a week-long Digital Humanities extravaganza, which you can read about in a previous ProfHacker post. I was participating in one of the new “Birds of a Feather” discussions, which asked two provocateurs to make short presentations and then would open up into a discussion wi…


Flying with the New FAA Rules

 If you read my bio here on ProfHacker, you’ll see that I never go anywhere without USB cables or a novel. The latter has been especially important when I get on airplanes. We’ve written previously about how to hack your travel—by car or by plane. But it’s been difficult to be as productive as possible when you’ve had to turn your electronic devices off for big chunks of the flight. Hence, the need for a good novel to take up my time from the gate to 10,000 feet.

Last week, however, the FAA annou…


Amazon: Buy a Print Book, Get an E-Book, Too

As the New York Times “Bits” blog reported last month, the online retailer Amazon is launching a new program called “Kindle MatchBook, [which] lets its customers buy the electronic versions of books they have already purchased in print form for either $2.99, $1.99, $0.99 or free.” If you have purchased a print book from Amazon at any point since 1995, then (assuming the book is eligible for this program) you will be given the option to get the e-book version, too.

Now, this seems like a pretty s…


Open Thread Wednesday: Social Reading

6592260939_880f4a046c_mEarlier this month, Anne Trubek published a piece in The American Prospect that asked readers an important question: “When It Comes to Kindles, Do You ‘Like’ or Unlink?” Her essay argues that the “Popular Highlight” feature of e-readers reconnects us to an “age old” tradition of reading that stretches back to Homeric times. However, she also admits that this tradition, while rekindling a practice that dates back hundreds and hundreds of years, might also be at odds with the contemporary reader w…


Easy E-Books from Your Readlist

Stack of newspapersWe’ve written at ProfHacker about several different services that let you save webpages into a queue to read later: Brian wrote about “Asynchronous Reading.” AmyNatalie, and Jason have mentioned Instapaper; I wrote about Pocket; and George mentioned Readability. These services are all basically the same. But Readability has created a new service, called  Readlists.

According to their website, a Readlist is “a group of web pages—articles, recipes, course materials, anything—bundled into an…


The Kindle Paperwhite Reviewed: Device and Ecosystem

A few weeks ago I did something which surprised my wife, and which surprised me: I bought a Kindle Paperwhite. Even more surprising, I like the Kindle a lot, and I find myself doing most of a certain kind of reading on the Kindle.

Here is a not-so-brief review of the device itself, followed by a few thoughts on the Kindle as an e-book ecosystem.

The Device

Size. First, the Paperwhite is light and small — less than half a pound, about the height and width of a small trade paperback, but a lot thi…


Using Your Kindle to Proofread Your Work

In October Ryan showed us how you can use the text-to-speech accessibility features on your computer to proofread work. Ryan offers the example of checking the accuracy of a transcription with this method, but he notes at the end of his post that this might be helpful for proofreading our own writing. Some of us may ultimately find that synthesized voice technology is still too far behind to create a tolerable listening experience, but I personally find it good enough when taken in moderate dose…


First Impressions of the Kindle Fire

Kindle Fire in handAmazon’s newly released Kindle Fire, a  7-inch full color tablet built for Amazon’s content, is the first in its popular Kindle hardware line to step out into the widening market of convergent devices. Ebook readers, once of the remaining single-purpose gadgets with a clear purpose in a tech-heavy briefcase, are now forced to compete for that space with the more nimble tablets. The first-generation Kindle Fire is a strange combination of both worlds, and while it fails to fully satisfy as eit…


Amazon Announces (Paid) Lending Library

Amazon has just announced the “Kindle Owners’ Lending Library,” whereby “thousands of books” are available to be checked out. There are two catches, however: first, you have to own a Kindle device (software running on a computer or mobile device isn’t enough); and second, you have to have a membership with Amazon Prime, which costs $79 per year. (Amazon Prime membership means that your orders are always delivered faster, and you also have access to a section of Amazon’s video on demand library i…


Create Your Own E-Book with Open-Source Sigil

Kindle in the DarkMore and more of us are reading e-books on our Kindles, Nooks, iPads, and various other e-reader devices. Usually these are books we purchase from the big players in the e-book market or download from public domain collections such as Project Gutenberg.

But have you ever wanted to create your own e-book? Maybe it’s a Creative Commons book that only exists in HTML format. Or perhaps it’s a set of blog posts. Or maybe it’s a student’s dissertation. Or even your own research notes. How do you conve…