Mark Pilgrim has a great, incisive post about the Amazon Kindle e-reader that sums up almost all of the reasons I won't be buying it -- it spies on you, it has DRM (which means that it has to be designed to prevent you from modding it, lest you mod it to remove the DRM), it prevents you from selling or lending your books, and the terms of service are nearly as abusive as the Amazon Unbox
terms (and worse than the thoroughly dumb-ass Amazon MP3 terms
Mark only misses one anti-feature of the Kindle: it comes with EVDO wireless through Sprint, which means that, inevitably, there will be world class Awful Crap that Kindle owners will confront, because it is impossible to involve a mobile carrier with a technology without infecting that technology with Awful Crap. When you lie down with dogs, you wake up with fleas.
Act I: The act of buying
When someone buys a book, they are also buying the right to resell that book, to loan it out, or to even give it away if they want. Everyone understands this.
Jeff Bezos, Open letter to Author’s Guild, 2002
You may not sell, rent, lease, distribute, broadcast, sublicense or otherwise assign any rights to the Digital Content or any portion of it to any third party, and you may not remove any proprietary notices or labels on the Digital Content. In addition, you may not, and you will not encourage, assist or authorize any other person to, bypass, modify, defeat or circumvent security features that protect the Digital Content.
Amazon, Kindle Terms of Service, 2007
Here's the biggest mystery of the Internetiverse for me today: why is it that Amazon, the most customer-focused, user-friendly company in the world of physical goods, always makes a complete balls-up hash out of digital delivery of goods? You'd think that they'd be the smartest people around when it comes to using the Internet to sell you stuff you want, but as soon as that stuff is digital, they go from customer-driven angels to grabby, EULA-toting horrors. Why does the Web make Amazon go crazy?
(Disclosure: If you buy a Kindle and then give them money to read Boing Boing, they send us some of it )
Redditor ipee9932cd couldn’t find a keyboard to their liking, so they built the casing of their dreams—out of cement. The brutal board weighs in at 12 pounds (yes, heavier than an IBM Model M) and “it takes some force to move it.” Being my first concrete cast, I chose not to put any rebar and […]
Thinkgeek’s $80 Lawn Jawas are a weird mix of kitsch, bad taste, technology, and fandom.
Eli Livingston’s $23 viynl Big Chap bank is a beaut (I bought one last week when I saw it in person in a store): the whole sculpt is awesome, but the tinted/clear-plastic brain-casing is just the best.
When you’ve had a long day and it’s time to unwind, there’s a lot you can do to relax: drink some tea, take a shower or even read a book. But there’s one thing that’s essential to a comfortable night’s rest—and that’s investing in some really good sheets. Enter Bamboo Bed Sheets. These quality sheets retail for $120, but […]
The Avantree Powerhouse 4 Port Fast USB Charging Station brings high quality, high power, and still keeps your work space or home looking neat and organized. The best part about this charger is its capacity. It comes packing 4 USB charging sockets and a powerful 4.5A/22.5W output.. Its smartport technology means you don’t have to worry about frying your battery, either—it […]
With this comprehensive course in App & Game Development for iOS and Android, you’ll be able to take full advantage of this career opportunity without committing to going back to school full time. You’ll learn how to build immersive, interactive games and apps from start to finish using Python, C#, Unity, and HTML—some of the most in-demand programming […]