Archive for the ‘Version 2.5’ Category

Flash! I try the Kindle post to Twitter function

July 5, 2010

Flash! I try the Kindle post to Twitter function  

I know a lot of you went, “Huh?” when Amazon added posting to Twitter and/or Facebook from your Kindles with the latest update.  

I think this is a good thing for literacy and the love of books…really.  

You know how when characters get hit on the head in old cartoons birds flew around their heads in a mad swirl?  

That’s how a lot of people view their lives now.  

No, no, not the being hit on the head part…well, maybe.  ;)  

They have this whole automat of things rotating around them: work, friends, movies, songs, TV shows…and they just pluck one out of the air when they want it.  

Why shouldn’t books be part of that mix?  

It seems…exclusionary to want it to be hard for people to get to books to read.  Yes, books (some books) are wonderful, magical, very valuable…but that doesn’t mean they need to be some treasures to be won by a quest.  

Twitter is one of those flitters, ;) those invisible sprites that accompany people all the time now, and that they invoke with magical passes over their touchpad SmartPhones (and tablets and yes, even Kindles).  

Well, the idea of tweeting a quotation from a Kindle does intrigue me.  

I love quotations…I publish a series of them in another blog of mine, The Measured Circle.  

However, have been working with them for years, I know that 140 characters isn’t much for quotations…if you want to source them properly.  Even if you don’t…that’s not much (maybe  line and a half in a typical Microsoft Word document at a typical setting).  

Connecting to Twitter seems to be a serious challenge for the Kindle, when you are going through the web browser.  It took me several attempts (my connection isn’t good where I am most of the time) to manage to put in my information to link my Kindle to Twitter.  This is one of those things I’d love to be able to do through  

http://www.amazon.com/manageyourkindle  

Oh, how do you set it up?  

Go to Home-Menu-Settings-Social Networks-Manage  

You’ll see a choice under twitter to “link account”.  Then, follow the directions.  This a short excerpt from the manual:  

  • To link your Kindle to your Twitter account, select “Link Account” under Twitter.
  •    
     

  • Move the 5-way down to highlight “Username or Email” and type your Twitter user name or e-mail address. To enter a capital letter, press and hold the Shift key down while pressing the letter.
  • Move the 5-way down to highlight “Password” and type your password. To enter a capital letter, press and hold the Shift key down while pressing the letter.
  • Move the 5-way down to highlight “Sign in” and press to select it.
  • If this is the first time you are linking a Kindle to your Twitter account, select “Allow” to confirm that you want to allow your Kindle to access your Twitter account.
  • You will return to the “Manage Your Social Networks” screen, where your Twitter user name is now displayed. Your Kindle is now linked to your Twitter account.

Once it has been set up, you can send highlights you make to Twitter (what I call “klipentweet”).   

When you are reading a book, you can just use your 5-way to click at the beginning of the quotation you want, and then at the end of it.  Ordinarily, that’s all you need to do.  

If you want to share it (and you’ve set that up), then you press ALT+enter (the bent arrow…diagonally to up and to your right from the Sym key on a K2).  If you click the end of the highlight first, just 5-key back over the highlight…you’ll be given the share option again.  

When you choose share, you’ll be given a choice to add a note.  

That’s important: what gets shared is just a link to the quotation at the  

http://kindle.amazon.com  

page, and a #Kindle link.  

It does not include in your tweet the actual quotation.  

In this case, I typed the actual quotation by hand as the note:  

“A lot of the talk was foolish, but it was all magnificent.” http://amzn.com/k/2GYA0055RYQP9 #Kindle  

When you click on it, you get this:  

After following link in a tweet

The material that Amazon inserted into the tweet took 40 characters, leaving me with 100.  

I can see how this has some specific limited uses, and might sell a few books for Amazon.  

One other interesting thing: you can share your notes as well, and you can share notes or highlights after you’ve made them.  

To make a note, have a book open and do  

Menu-Add a note or highlight  

Then, you just type.   

After that, you’ll see a choice to Save & Share, just Save Note, and some other options. 

Note that means you could send something from your Kindle that has nothing to do with the book!

Hey, I just tested this…this is cool!  You can tweet from a personal document…so you could put a personal document, like a text file, on your Kindle and just tweet from that one.  It will show context from your document, if any, but that’s great!  Hmm…except, I deleted it from Twitter and it didn’t delete from http://kindle.amazon.com .  Hopefully, that’s not permanent.

Huh, that’s an interesting point!

Amazon does not normally back up your notes from non-Kindle store items at that kindle.amazon site…but they do back up your tweets.  That sounds to me like you could set up a protected (private) account at Twitter, share your tweets (just with yourself or with other people you authorize…like a study group) and have them backed-up where you can copy and paste them easily…nice!  I haven’t tested that one out, but it seems logical.

I can really see this saving somebody who is stuck somewhere…tweeting from the Kindle.  :)  “What’s that Lassie?  Timmy tweeted from his Kindle that he fell down the well?  Good dog!”

To share notes or highlights you’ve made previously, go to  

Menu-View My Notes & Marks  

Go to the one you want, and do that Alt+Enter thing.   

That’s it…not too hard, once you get used to it.  It has posted to Twitter the two times I’ve done it easily and quickly.  Seems to be tweeted in minutes, certainly…might be right away.  

Oh, and Facebook?  Haven’t been able to test that…I don’t have a Facebook page.  

My offspring’s dog does, though.  ;)  

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.

Flash! I try the PDF zoom

June 28, 2010

Flash! I try the PDF zoom

One of the new features in the Kindle version 2.5 upgrade is the ability to zoom and pan on pdfs (portable document format) files.

I’ve used pdfs on my Kindle quite a bit: the curricula we use at work are in a pdf format, and having it on my Kindle has been great.  I’ve generally converted them (Amazon will do that for you for free) to a fully functional Kindle file.

That way, I can search (which I definitely want to be able to do), make notes, and, importantly to me, use text-to-speech.  I find that listening to it in the car on the way to a class can be a great way for a quick review.  Oh, I wouldn’t learn it that way initially, but it’s a good refresher.

When our Kindle 2s got native pdf reading in a previous update, I tried it…but found it wasn’t really for me.

I don’t tend to read a lot of books that have heavy-duty graphs or intricate images.  Since we’ve had the Kindle for PC option, I’ve used that to look at images, when necessary.

Honestly, the unconverted pdfs just tend to be too small for me to see well.

Well, intrepid explorer that I am, I thought I’d try the zoom for you.  ;)

We were going on a walk through a large park where they had installed some art exhibits.  The walk was going to be a couple of miles or more.

I downloaded a pdf of the map the park had provided.  The map was 2,277 KB.  I also had it sent directly to the Kindle (I was in a bit of a hurry).  Pop quiz: how much did it cost me (a US Kindleer using US wireless) to send that document directly to my Kindle?

Forty-five cents: fifteen cents per meg (roughly a thousand kb), rounded up.

I wasn’t able to see how long it took for it to be sent, but even converting a file, it’s usually under a minute or so for me.  In the beginning with the Kindle 1, it could take hours, but that hasn’t been my experience in…oh, certainly months.

Here was the first negative: it literally took about twenty-two seconds to open the file.  It filled the screen, with some white (and I use that term loosely…whatever color the normal background it) border space.  The text was much too tiny for me to read…I would say I would have needed a magnifying glass, if it was on paper.

The next thing was to try the zoom.  I hit the Aa button.  My choices were:

  • fit-to-screen (the default)
  • 150%
  • 200%
  • 300%
  • actual size

I chose 200%.  I got a selection box, which I could move around with my 5-way.

Tip: if you hold down the shift (up arrow key) when using the 5-way, you can make in move in much smaller increments. 

 Here was another negative: it took more than twenty seconds (again) for it to enlarge that section 200%. 

A positive: once it was enlarged, it looked great!  I could read everything just fine, and had someone else look at it: yep, no problems. 

There are also “position bars” along the bottom and right-hand edges to show you if there is more above you, below you, to your right and to your left.  That was helpful.

Another negative, though…even moving to another section took a long time to repaint it…one of the sections (with a lot of dark) took twenty-five seconds.  It seemed to me like the more dark there was, the longer it took.

You could hit the Back button, and it went immediately back (well, part of a second…like a normal page turn) to the original image.

Then, Home got me right back to the homescreen, as you would expect.

So, my overall impression: as my offspring would say, “meh”.  Just like with the browser, it could be used, and it might save you at times, but most of the time, it would be a lot of work (for an image as intense as that map).

My feeling is that it would be much more effective with, say, a table full of numbers.  There wouldn’t a lot of black, so it would move from magnified section to magnified section much more quickly. 

A computer (even a tablet computer) is going to be better at this point for intense, natively-read pdfs…but I like my Kindle for converted pdfs.  :)

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.

I make my first Collections

June 25, 2010

I make my first Collections

I would guess that when the first Kindle user downloaded her or his second book, the desire for Kindle organization was born.  :)

For years, we could “tag” books.  Basically, you add a note, and then search for the note.  That worked (although it could be a bit dicey with Topaz format books).

With Version 2.5, though, we get a built-in system called Collections.

I talked about the techniques in this earlier post.

 I thought I’d give you a little bit more of a personal take on what I did.

Let me start out by saying I haven’t put any personal documents (except my review copy of The Twiller) on my newest Kindle yet.  Collections will be a lot more useful after I do.

For now, I had:

One personal document (The Twiller)

Two samples

One book from the Kindle store (The Great God Pan, a free classic)

Five things from Amazon: MyClippings; upgrading to Kindle; Welcome Bufo; Kindle User’s Guide; and The New Oxford American Dictionary

My three blogs

The first thing I did was create a Collection called **current.  I figured I’ll keep my current reading in there.  The two asterisks were so it would sort to the top if I chose to sort by Title.  The Twiller went in there.

I created a second Collection called *on deck.  That’s for the ones waiting to be read.  My one other Kindle e-book went there.  It has one asterisk so that, if I sort by Title, it will be below the **current Collection.

Next up, a Collection called Amazon.  I put the five Amazon documents in there.  One interesting thing: it gave me an Amazon logo when I look at the details of the Collection.  :)  Apparently, the Kindle knows the name Amazon.

I had noticed while I was adding items that my samples were being shown as a choice.  I didn’t really anticipate that: I’m pretty sure I had read that other people were unable to put samples into Collections, at least initially.  That’s nice!  I created a Collection called samples, and put them in there.

That was it for Collections…for now.

I tried sorting it alphabetically by title, but honestly, I didn’t like the look of it.  When you do that, the titles are both in the Collections and outside it…that looked messy.

I think it will be easy enough to keep my **current collection at the top.  The only trick will be when I download new books.  However, I tend to download those to my Kindle for PC, and just get them out of the archives when I want them.  That means I’ll deal with those one at a time, which should be pretty easy.

Here’s how it looks sorted by Collections:

 

Sorted by Collections

Here’s how it looks sorted by Title:

 

Sorted by Title

The one thing I wish I could do (but I understand why it would be hard) would be to be able to put my blogs in a Collection.

I did experiment a bit.  I tried a Collection title that was 70 characters long (to get past a possible 64 character limit): no problem.  I restarted the Kindle…my Archives went to zero (which they should typically on a restart), but my Collections were still visible.  When I synced, I still had my proper collections.  Some people have reported problems with that, but I was okay.

All in all, I can see how this will be useful as I more personal documents.  I tend to keep my Kindle store books in the archives, so it won’t help me too much with that.

But it is nice.  :)

Any experiences you want to share with creating your Collections?  Feel free to leave a comment. 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.

Frequently Asked Kindle Questions: special passwords edition

June 21, 2010

Frequently Asked Kindle Questions: special passwords edition

Q. Can I password protect my Kindle?

A. Yes, if you have the 2.5 update.

Q. How do I know if I have the update?

A. Go to Home-Menu-Settings.  You’ll see your version number at the bottom of the screen.  You can then hit the Back button to go back to Home.

Q. What if I don’t have 2.5 yet?  How do I get it?

A. You can wait until your Kindle updates (you’ll need to have your Whispernet on), or go to the Kindle Software Updates page.  You can follow instructions there to manually install it.

Q. Is there anything I should do before I update it?

A. If you have a “hack”, you need to uninstall it.  You’ll know if you do.  I would always back up your documents folder (and Audible or music if you are using those) before updating a Kindle (and do it regularly).

Q. How do I back up my files?  Is that really necessary?

A. You connect your Kindle to your computer using your included USB cord, and just drag the folders to your computer.  It’s not necessary, but I recommend regularly backing up that folder, especially if you have files that didn’t come from the Kindle store.

Q. Can anybody with a Kindle get the update?

A. Anybody except people with a Kindle 1.

Q. What do I do if the update isn’t working for me?

A. You can call Kindle Customer service: 1-866-321-8851 in the US, 1-206-266-0927 outside it.   You can also contact them through the Amazon website.

Q. Okay, I have the update and I’m ready.  Why would I want to password protect my Kindle?

A. There are several reasons.  If someone finds your Kindle and does not know the password, they will not be able to see what you have on it.  That could keep family members from seeing embarrassing personal documents.  It may be required by your work that you have a password on a device before putting certain types of documents on it.  It also prevents people from ordering on your Kindle if you leave it lying around.

Q. So, if I order, say, erotica, I can keep my child from knowing I have it?

A. If you put it on your Kindle yourself, yes.  If you order it from the Kindle store, and your child has another device on the account (another Kindle, an iPhone, and so on), they would see the title in your archives.

Q. Can I password protect the archives?

A. No.  The password only protects the specific Kindle.  You have a password on your account that protects certain functions (like adding a device to the account or changing e-mail addresses authorized to send items to your Kindle), but the archives are available to everybody on the account.

Q. Can I password protect just the buying part?

A. No.  If someone doesn’t know the password, they can’t use the Kindle, even just to read the books on it.

Q. Is there anything I should do before I set a password?

A. You  may want to record the password you are going to use somewhere.  If you forget the password, the only way Kindle Customer Service is going to be able to reset it is to do a factory reset.  That will also delete anything you’ve put on the Kindle yourself: personal documents; pictures; periodicals you’ve “kept”; MP3s; and books from Audible.com.  I strongly recommend you regularly back up your Kindle’s documents, music, Audible, and pictures folders. 

Q. They can’t just reset the password?

A. No.

Q. Where do you recommend I keep my password?

A. Some place safe and not dependent on a single device.  Some people and companies keep their passwords in safe deposit boxes.  Others make sure trusted people (family members, lawyers) have them.  It just depends on how careful you want to be.

Q. Anything else I should do?

A. You are going to be asked to enter a “hint” for yourself.  You may want to think of that ahead of time.  For example, some people may use something like a first pet’s name as a password, so putting “pet” as a hint might help.  Also, the password can be up to 12 letters long…you might want to think of it first.

Q. Any suggestions for passwords?

A. Generally, it’s better not to use as a password something you carry with you.  For example, some people like to use their birthdays for passwords.  Since you often have that with you in your wallet (on your driver’s license), that’s not as secure.  It doesn’t appear that the Kindle requires you to use both letters and numbers.  It depends, again, on how secure you want to be.   The most secure thing would be a random string of numbers and letters, but that’s hard to remember.

Q. How do I enter the password?

A. Go to Home, Menu, Settings, and select “turn on” next to Device Password.  You’ll be asked to enter the same password twice (to make sure you didn’t have a typo the first time) and then to enter your hint.  Then, select “submit”.

Q. “Submit” usually means you are sending something to a server.  Is my password being stored by Amazon?

A. Apparently not. 

Q. Does that mean it’s stored on my Kindle?  If someone got my Kindle, could they find my password on my device?

A. My guess is that it would be possible, but difficult.  The password is presumably encrypted in some way.  It’s similar to your laptop: it would be difficult for someone to “hack” into your password, but hypothetically possible for very technically sophisticated people.

Q. When will I have to enter the password?

A. Whenever your Kindle “wakes up” or turns on.  If you attach your Kindle to a computer using your USB cable (when it is asleep), it will also ask for the password.

Q. If I forget my password, can I call Amazon and have them give it to me?

A. No.  They’d have to reset, as above.

Q. What if I want to change my password later?

A. Go to Home, Menu, Settings, and you’ll see a choice to “edit” next to “device password”.  You’ll need to enter the old password, then the new password twice, and then a hint.  Then, hit submit.

Q. What if I don’t want to use a password any more?

A. Go to Home, Menu, Settings, and you’ll see a “turn off” choice next to Device Password.  Select it, and then hit submit.

Q. If I turn it back on again, will it remember my old password?

A. Probably not.  You’ll probably need to enter it again, but that is unknown at this time.

Q. Will I be able to use the same password I used before?

A. Probably.  It seems likely, but I have not tested it yet.

Q. Where can I get more official information from Amazon?

A. The Kindle User’s guide has been updated and is available here.  The Amazon Help Page is here.

Q. Do you have similar information on other features of Version 2.5?

A. Yes.  You can see posts in that category here.

Note: I have not been able to test 2.5 myself yet.  I’ll update this page as necessary, and welcome your feedback.

This is one in a series of posts of Frequently Asked Kindle Questions. You may also be interested in my Kindle title with the same name

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog

Frequently Asked Kindle Questions: special Collections edition

June 18, 2010

Frequently Asked Kindle Questions: special Collections edition

Q. What are Collections?

A. “Collections” is a feature that was added to Kindles with the 2.5 update to provide better organization for Kindle users.

Q. So, if I don’t have the update yet, I don’t have Collections?

A. That’s correct.

Q. How do I know if I have the update?

A. Go to Home-Menu-Settings.  You’ll see your version number at the bottom of the screen.  You can then hit the Back button to go back to Home.

Q. What if I don’t have 2.5 yet?  How do I get it?

A. You can wait until your Kindle updates (you’ll need to have your Whispernet on), or go to the Kindle Software Updates page.  You can follow instructions there to manually install it.

Q. Is there anything I should do before I update it?

A. If you have a “hack”, you need to uninstall it.  You’ll know if you do.  I would always back up your documents folder (and Audible or music if you are using those) before updating a Kindle (and do it regularly).

Q. How do I back up my files?  Is that really necessary?

A. You connect your Kindle to your computer using your included USB cord, and just drag the folders to your computer.  It’s not necessary, but I recommend regularly backing up that folder, especially if you have files that didn’t come from the Kindle store.

Q. Can anybody with a Kindle get the update?

A. Anybody except people with a Kindle 1.

Q. What do I do if the update isn’t working for me?

A. You can call Kindle Customer service: 1-866-321-8851 in the US, 1-206-266-0927 outside it.   You can also contact them through the Amazon website.

Q. Okay, so I’ve gotten the update and I’m ready to start.  I’m still not quite clear, though: are Collections folders?

A. No.  They’ll seem somewhat similar to folders on your homescreen, because you’ll see the name of your Collection and then “open it” to get to the books “inside it”.  However, the biggest difference is that your books are not actually inside the Collection.   The Collection is a display instruction to your Kindle, to show you one line for the Collection in the homescreen rather than each book name.  When you delete a folder from your computer, you delete everything in it.  Deleting a Collection from your Kindle will not delete the books.

Q. Does it put something in the book file to tell it where to go?

A. No, the Collection is separate from your book files.  The Collection is told by you which books to group together for display, but the book file is probably unchanged.

Q. Probably?

A. We’re not supposed to “back engineer” Kindle files and software, so it’s harder to check.  But there is no reason for it to have to do that.

Q. So I create a Collection, and then tell the Kindle which books should be shown when I click on that Collection?

A. Yes, that’s right.

Q. How do I create a collection?

A. Go to Home, then Menu, then you’ll see Create New Collection.  Then, name it using the keyboard and click save.  You’ll see it in your homescreen.  It will also change your sort order to sort so that you’ll first see your Collections in the reverse order that you created them or used them (most recent first), then your books which are not in Collections (most recent first…read or downloaded).  Books which are in Collections will only show in the Collection, not as individual titles.

Q. I like to keep my homescreen sorted alphabetically by title.  Can I do that with Collections?

A. Sort of.  You can switch the sort to any of the pre-existing sorts (Author, Title, Most Recent).  However, the books will then be visible outside of your Collections again. 

Q. So my Collections would be gone from the homescreen?

A. They would show, and you could click on them to see the books in the Collection, but the books would also show outside them.

Q. Hmm…I’d like my Collections at the top sorted alphabetically.  Any trick for that?

A. Yes.  Computers generally sort symbols before letters.  If you name your Collections with, say, an asterisk at the front, they should sort to the top when sorted alphabetically by title.

Q. Are there any forbidden symbols?

A. Unknown at this point.

Q. Can I use spaces?

A. Yes.

Q. How long can my Collection name be?

A. Unknown.

Q. What if I make a mistake naming my Collection?  Can I rename it?

A. Yes.  Go to the Collection in your homescreen and flick right.  You’ll see the option to rename it.

Q. What if I want to delete a Collection?

A. It’s similar to renaming.  Go to the Collection in your homescreen and flick right.

Q. Deleting my Collection won’t delete my books, right?

A. Right.  It’s safe to do.

Q. How do I put the books into the Collections?

A. There are two main ways.  When you first create a Collection, you’ll probably want to put a lot of books into it at once.  Go to Home, go to the Collection, flick right, choose Add/Remove items.  You’ll see all your books.  You can select (or, later on deselect) them by clicking on them.  When you are done, you can click Done, Back, or Home (your choices will be preserved with any of these.

Q. Wait!  So I can do a bunch of books at once?   I’d heard people say it was taking hours to add the books to the Collections.

A. Yes.  It’s possible to add books one at a time, which may make sense after you initially set up the Collections and then download a new title.  You go to the title in the homescreen, flick right, and you’ll see a choice to Add to Collection.  You’ll see your list of Collections, and you can add the title to as many as you want.

Q. I can have the same book in more than one Collection?  Doesn’t that take up more memory? 

A. Remember that the book isn’t actually being moved or copied.  A small instruction is being stored where to group the book when you are sorted by the Collections.  The amount of additional memory is very small.

Q. Why would I want the same book in more than one Collection?

A. You might have a Collection for “books to be read”, another one for “science fiction”, another one for “books I’ve reviewed”, and another one for the author, for example.

Q. That sounds pretty flexible…isn’t that better than folders?

A. It’s a more robust organizational system, yes.

Q. Can I drag the books on to the Collections, like I can do with folders?

A. No.  You can’t drag and drop on E Ink currently. 

Q. Can I put anything in a collection?

A. No.  Just e-books from the Kindle store, audiobooks, and personal documents.

Q. You said from the Kindle store.  I get books from other sources, like ManyBooks, FeedBooks, and Baen.  I can’t put those in a Collection?

A. You can.  Those are considered Personal Documents by your Kindle.

Q. What about subscription items?  I’d like to have a Kindle reference section, and put your books and my I Love Your Kindle blog in there.

A. No, no subscription items.  The most recent issue of each periodical will appear as an entry in your homescreen, like a book.  All of the others will be under one line called Periodicals: Back Issues.

Q. Why is that? I’d like to put my periodicals in collections.

A. My guess is that it is because each issue of a periodical downloads with a different name…with the date added to the end of the issue.  The Collection probably can’t be told to put anything with USA Today in the title into a Collection…it may need the exact title, which changes.  That’s just speculation, though.

Q. What happens to my Collection information?

A. It’s stored in a file on your Kindle, sort of like your MyClippings.txt file.  It’s also backed up for you by Amazon, but remember that can only be done with Whispernet on.  I would keep Whispernet on when you are creating your Collections, or certainly do a Home-Menu-Sync and check for items afterwards.

Q. I have a family member on my account who is going to be much better at this than I am.  Can I just use the system that person created?

A. Yes.  You can go to Home, then Archived Items.  You’ll see a choice to Add Other Device Collections. 

Q. Will that overwrite my collections? 

A. Answer forthcoming.  It appears that it won’t, but I haven’t been able to test it yet.  I’ll update this when I find out more.

Q. Have you heard about any problems with people making Collections?

A. Unfortunately, yes.  I’ve read about a few people having the Kindle reset and the Collections disappear.  I want to stress again to have the Whispernet on when you are creating your Collections, and do a Sync and check for items afterwards.  I’ve also seen a post where someone said that Amazon suggested deregistering and re-registering the Kindle to get the Collections back…I can’t see how that would work without it having synced with Amazon first. 

Q. Where can I get more official information from Amazon?

A. The Kindle User’s guide has been updated and is available here.  The Amazon Help Page is here.

Note: I have not been able to test 2.5 myself yet.  I’ll update this page as necessary, and welcome your feedback.

This is one in a series of posts of Frequently Asked Kindle Questions. You may also be interested in my Kindle title with the same name.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.

Flash! You can increase the text size on websites…and a tip for new browsers

June 17, 2010

Flash! You can increase the text size on websites…and a tip for new browsers

Well, I saw this in the new user’s guide, and I’ve asked the Kindle community and had it confirmed.

After you’ve updated to 2.5, you can increase the text size on websites!

That’s something I’ve really wanted.  Also, once you update the size, it stays updated until you change it again.

Tip for new browsers

I’ve also gotten confirmation that at least some Kindleers outside the US are able to browse the web on their Kindles when they couldn’t before (thanks to Ezh, my EU correspondent for one such report).

Here’s a tip worth repeating, then.

Book this site on your Kindle:

http://cantoni.mobi

It’s a portal for mobile friendly sites, which will tend to work best on your Kindle. 

You may also want to look at this older post of mine,

Slogging the Web

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.

Flash! Manual update to 2.5 now available from Amazon

June 14, 2010

Flash! Manual update to 2.5 now available from Amazon

People have been waiting for this!

There is a major new update for the Kindle which has been slowly rolling out.  It give you Collections (a way to organize the books), zooming on pdfs, and a lot more.

You can now download it and install it manually, instead of waiting for Amazon to get around to your Kindle

Amazon Kindle update page

There are instructions on that page…not too bad if you are moderately computer literate.

Note: if you have any “hacks” on your Kindle (which I do not recommend), remove them before attempting the update.

Also, make sure you get the right version for your Kindle: they’ve improved that part on the page by giving you pictures so you can match the right version.

Enjoy!

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.

Flash! 2.5 Kindle update officially delayed

May 31, 2010

Flash! 2.5 Kindle update officially delayed

Some Kindle users have gotten the latest update, which brings a number of significant changes, including Collections for organizing books,what I call “klipentweet”, where you can send passages to Twitter, pan and zoom on pdfs, password protection, and two more fonts.

We were initially told that we would have it in late May, and of course, we are coming to the end of the month.

Many Kindleers don’t have it yet.

On the

Amazon update page

 it now says

We know Kindle customers are anxious to receive the 2.5 software update, so we wanted to provide you with some details about its status. We’ve rolled out the 2.5 software release to a set of Kindle customers and have received great feedback from these early customers. Based on this feedback, we are making some small adjustments to improve the experience further. We will be rolling out the 2.5 software update to more users over the coming weeks.

That’s interesting to me. 

It sort of suggests that there was something edgy about the software…or that they had concerns about what people would thin. 

That would explain why it hasn’t been available for wired download from that page, which is the norm with updates.

Perhaps it was sort of a beta (test version), which they don’t usually do.  If there’s a problem (or just an enhancement), they’ll be able to upgrade the people who got it, since the only ones who got it did so wirelessly.  If they had allowed wired download, that would be much more complicated.

I think this is a good sign, this attention to quality.  Are they also paying attention to reception?   They haven’t always been good at that, in my opinion, so I like that as well. 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.


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