Thoughts on the Amazon Kindle Fire

Amazon just finished revealing their new tablet, the Kindle Fire. First off, it’s $199, while the cheapest iPad starts at $500. I wasn’t very interested in a tablet other than for extra real estate for reading. At $199, the Kindle Fire is priced low enough to pique my curiosity. More »


At work, I stare at a computer screen all day. When I come home, I stare at the TV screen or my laptop; most of the time, I use both. The only time I’ve had a problem with eyestrain is when I wear contacts that get increasingly uncomfortable throughout the day.

IEEE spectrum ran an article yesterday on how the new iPad isn’t a threat to the Kindle because its screen is LCD rather than eInk — that the ease of reading eInk trumps reading on an LCD. As I was saying, I’ve personally never had any problems with eyestrain with a computer’s LCD. To that end, the Mayo Clinic says that eyestrain can be caused from not only extended computer use but also extended reading periods. If it isn’t clear yet, I think the whole eyestrain argument between LCD and eInk is bunk.

However, where I will praise eInk is in being able to read in sunlight. Washed out LCDs are a PITA whenever I use a gadget outside.

iPad Disappointment

Back in December, I posted about how I’ve been trying to shift my life into the digital domain.

Today, I watched as Apple dashed these hopes into the ground. Steve Jobs revealed their new tablet, The iPad. Upon first glance, I saw the iPhone’s interface and my heart sunk.

Gizmodo covers quite well the myriad disappointments of the iPad, all of which are very valid complaints. However, I’d like to explain my own personal disappointment.

Truly, what I wanted was a touchscreen MacBook. Something that could be used to create, but at the same time be large enough — unlike an iPhone or iPod Touch — to consume media. Apparently this is a tall order, since the iPad seems hell bent on only media consumption. That isn’t to say it’s a completely gimped product, you can buy the iWork suite for $30, i.e. it’s not the central focus of the device.

This is what I was expecting. This video is a concept of Microsoft’s Courier Tablet — something useful, something meant for creation. Yet all we got today is the “iPod Touch XL”.

Would it have been that hard to put a camera for video chat? Or allow multitasking? Or even put a USB port on the thing so we don’t need a dongle?

Someone wake me up when this thing can do something other than charge your credit card for media at every turn.