Round up #222: Mark Grist, Paperwhite update

Round up #222: Mark Grist, Paperwhite update

The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.

Major Paperwhite update

Yesterday, I wrote about a major Kindle Fire update.

Today, Amazon announced a big update to the new Kindle Paperwhite (new Kindle Paperwhite at AmazonSmile: support a non-profit by shopping) in this

press release

There are three main features:

  • Goodreads integration
  • Kindle FreeTime
  • Cloud Collections

Goodreads and Cloud Collections were part of the update to the new generation Kindle Fires yesterday, and they already had Kindle FreeTime.

I do have a Kindle Paperwhite expected to arrive today (I was able to get it for $19 in a recent promotion…it replaces one for me which was recently stolen during a home break-in). I’ll be able to look at these more carefully after I get it.  If you want to get it right away and install it yourself, you can go to

Kindle Software Updates page

Here is part of the press release Amazon sent me:

===

Goodreads Integration

Goodreads on Kindle Paperwhite brings together the world’s largest e-reading community and the world’s largest community of book lovers. Join more than 20 million other readers on Goodreads to discover great books and have discussions about what you’re reading. Features of the new Goodreads integration, available exclusively from Amazon, include:

– Share favorite passages with your Goodreads friends without leaving the book.

– See what your friends are reading, read their reviews and discover new books to read.

– When you finish a book, immediately rate it without putting down your Kindle.

– Keep track of all your reading activity—update your “Currently Reading”, “Read”, and “Want to Read” shelves directly from your Kindle. Easily add your Amazon book purchases, print and digital, to your Goodreads account.

Kindle FreeTime

Built-in parental controls have been extended to give parents a simple way to encourage kids to spend more time reading. Parents can set daily reading goals for their kids, hand-select books for their kids to read, and track progress against goals. Children earn achievement badges for hitting reading milestones—for example, reaching and exceeding their daily reading goal, and passing big milestones like “Read 1000 pages”. A progress report keeps parents updated on total time spent reading, number of words looked up, badges earned and books finished.

Cloud Collections

Organize your books, newspapers, and magazines in customized collections for easy reference, and Amazon’s Whispersync technology synchronizes the collections across your Kindle devices and reading apps so they’re available on all of your devices.

===

“I Like a Girl Who Reads”

There is a great video linked in this

Huffington Post article by Sarah Barness

It’s a poem by Mark Grist, and it has to do with what’s attractive…and that isn’t always the physical.

I will warn you that it is NSFW (Not Safe for Work), although you could probably hear it performed on network TV.

Although I’m not a fan of calling adults by words meant for children, I think that the poet is trying to make the point that someone who uses the common vernacular can also be drawn to the intellectual…and that’s important to express.

“How to Open a New Book”

This

EBOOK FRIENDLY post

reproduces a quaint, illustrated explanation from a bookbinder about how to open a new hardback properly.

I must say, I didn’t do it that way. I generally didn’t open the book all the way, the way it is shown here. I sort of peeked into the middle, tilting the book back and forth for each side, so that I didn’t break the spine. I was going to say “never”, but I did open them fully for some things like coffee table books. Novels, though? Not usually…

Bookstore sales buck general retail trend…by going down

For the third month in a row, according to this

Publishers Weekly article

U.S. bookstore sales were down..a lot. 4.5% year over year…we are also down for the whole year so far.

Overall, retail is up…this is particularly a brick-and-mortar (I’m a former manager) bookstore issue.

I do think this may be the last holiday season that we see Barnes & Noble in its current configuration. Amazon is doing more and more for us, and there are independent bookstores that are growing…I just don’t see investors looking at this holiday for B&N thinking that it’s worth keeping up the support.

That could mean that the chain gets sold to someone…or even that we know it will largely close. If the latter is the case, I think we would see one more holiday season out of them, but knowing that it was going.

I have given some ideas earlier about How to save large bookstores, and it’s possible Barnes & Noble will pull a phoenix on this…but you don’t see a lot of phoenixes around. 😉

The Onion goes all digital

I remember seeing a stack of copies of The Onion in a bookstore, just like any other newspaper.

Now, after 25 years, according to this

USA Today story by Roger Yu

it’s going to stop publishing on paper. It’s only been doing that in three cities recently, but this is another example of a major print publication dropping that format to go for all digital.

I also remember the day this blog passed The Onion in the Kindle store! That was exciting for me, and I wish them the best in the future.

“Apple Seeks to Knock Out E-book Class Action Suit”

Legal issues have been part of publishing for a very long time, and there is not indication they are going away any time soon.

They certainly go back more than a century, when the Supreme Court ruled that a store could discount books without the publisher’s permission (creating the “First Sale Doctrine”) in 1908. There was a battle that lasted more than a decade over whether or not Captain Marvel infringed on Superman, which meant the “Big Red Cheese” was off the stands for a long time.

In this

Publishers Weekly article by Andrew Albanese

we learn that Apple is basically arguing that the “class” in class action suits against it for e-book pricing is…I guess, ill-defined is a good way to put it.

My intuition is that they won’t prevail in getting the case dismissed, and that (if they don’t settle…they didn’t in the Department of Justice case, but did in the European Union) will have a trial in maybe May of 2014.

What do you think? Will Barnes & Noble exist, largely as we know it today, into 2015? How much does whether or not a person read affect how you feel about them…both as a friend and a potential partner? Stating a more simple (and narrow) version of that, is reading sexy? Did you try to keep a book in the same condition it was when you bought it, or did you curl the cover under, dogmark pages, and make marginalia? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. I recently polled my readers about my linking to AmazonSmile, and while more than two-thirds of the respondents said they would like it or didn’t mind (and about 15% didn’t know), there were enough people who wouldn’t like it that I’m not going to just jump into it and do it for everything. I’m going to try doing both links in this post, and see how hard and/or confusing that is for people. You can let me know how you feel about having both links by commenting on this post.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

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11 Responses to “Round up #222: Mark Grist, Paperwhite update”

  1. Phink Says:

    I have really been looking forward to this update. I posted on my Facebook page just yesterday “I sure wish I had 3 FB friends and 1/2 a gross of Goodreads friends instead of the other way around.” I really like Goodreads, especially being a big stat guy. It keeps up with pages read (using hard cover stats I think) plus I can keep up with updates and such and if I had more friends probably get a few ideas on what to read.

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Phink!

      It’s interesting: I suspect I may be a bit in the minority in that my Kindle is introducing me to Goodreads, rather than the other way around. Oh, I’d looked at GR a bit (I wrote about it earlier), but having it on my Kindle is getting me into using it…we’ll see how much. 🙂 I would have difficulty fitting something else into my routines and in expending a lot more creative energy.

      After I add my thousands of Amazon books (one at a time…I timed it, and it was something like a second and a half on average to add 100 books), and then look at adding my non-Amazon books, I’ll consider becoming more public.

      I don’t like only having the three classifications per book of “Read”, “Currently Reading”, or “Want to Read”. I have to choose one on each book “Want to Read” is the default, and honestly, I own a great deal of books where I would not say I especially want to read that particular one. I would prefer something that just say “Own”. I’d love to be able to just default all of them in with that in one action, and then go back and refine the status.

      The other thing is that the connection often seems to be failing quite often. Yes, it has a cute message about taking the time to read a book, but I’m not sure if that’s specific to the Kindle or to the Goodreads site and the connection to Amazon. I’ll have to try it at the site on my computer to see. Well, I just looked (gee, I’m fast). 😉 I didn’t see a way to import books from Amazon when on the computer. I’ll just have to hope it’s temporarily overwhelmed by people using it after the update, like me. 🙂

  2. Marcia Says:

    Thanks, as always, for the updates, but I want to thank you especially for the link to the proper method for opening a new book. I was taught this in the distant past but had forgotten and enjoyed reading about it and sending to family and friends.

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Marcia!

      Great! Sometimes I know I’m talking more about books generally than specifically e-books, but it’s all related to me.

  3. Judy Schechter Says:

    Hi Bufo! My KFHDX updated today and the new features are AWESOME!! Not only can we put all of our content into collections, now we can create folders and fill them with app and book icons ON THE HOME SCREEN!!!
    The only thing missing is the ability to customize with wallpaper, and who knows, that might be possible some day.
    There were no tutorials ‘re the new features so I used the May day button, and the rep was clueless. But after putting me on hold, he came back and showed me that collections is now in the left panel area, and for dictation, there’s now a microphone icon on the keyboard. I’m just thrilled with these features! I was surprised that under book collections it showed all the categories I had created on my $69 Kindle last year, but of course I can delete and add others. 🙂

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Judy!

      I’m hoping to get something written fairly soon (but the holidays are a busy time) that is a very basic guide to the KFHDX, and I’ll include something on the various features. I’m thinking this is a ninety-nine center, rather than something really comprehensive.

      The dictation is really quite good! I’m not using it right now, because it would be disturbing in the house. However, I was able to use it yesterday with online chat help for my Roku! That involved some somewhat unusual language, but it rendered it well. That means I was able to have my Fire with me as I followed steps that the service rep was recommending…and reply pretty easily. I’m not sure how to hit the equivalent of “enter” to send the message, though.

      As to the Collections: the trick is that for e-books (for example), you manage them on the Books tab (tap the menu button). Then, you can “long press” a Collection to add it to Home. One thing I tried which didn’t work: I tried dragging a book from one Collection to another, and all it did was remove it from the Collection. Maybe in the future…

  4. Ann Von Hagel Says:

    Wondering if you’ve gotten the PW update? On Kboards there’s a lot of concern that it’s not well thought out and not very user friendly re: collections for folks that have multiple kindles in the hands of multiple users on one Amazon account.

    Specifically: it counts every collection you ever had on every kindle you ever had and if you delete it, it is deleted from the cloud, not just your device.

    For folks who’ve had kindles for 5+ years and have upgraded over that time, they often re-did collections. But now defunct collections on devices they no longer even own show up.

    Also, EVERY kindle on the account HAS to see all the collections that anyone has. So if mom has a ‘trashy romance collection’ that, before, was not visible to her 8 year old daughter, it will be now if the daughter has a PW2!.

    It does not appear that Kindle Free Time has shown up yet — which might solve the above issue. There is speculation as to whether or not it will be available on earlier, still functioning devices. Those who have it apparently did the manual download and install. I’m holding off for now. Hope to see further analysis.

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Ann!

      I’m just setting up my new Paperwhite (replacing the stolen one) tonight. I’m working on the update, and then I’ll do more on this. I plan to write a full post on Cloud Collections.

      What you are describing, though, is what I would expect to happen from what I’ve seen on the Kindle Fire HDX.

      It doesn’t know which Collections belong to which person, of course. All Collections are, I think, now see as belonging to the account (similar to all e-books purchased on the account). I think you are able to manage the Collections on individual devices…which would include deleting them.

      Once I get this set up and I can test it, I’ll publish more.

      Update: I do have Kindle Freetime on mine…I’ll look at that, and see how it relates to Collections showing. My first guess is that if you block the Cloud, you won’t see them.

      • Phink Says:

        In reference to Ann Von Hagel. I am not going to complain harshly about the update but so far I am a little disappointed. One, I got tons of folders and had to delete them one by one. When folders came out I thought that was the best thing since the invention of the eReader. I quickly discovered it was just too much trouble for me to always be putting books in and out of folders (from to be read, to reading, to it’s proper genre or folder after done reading) and I never use folders now. I download books as I read them and never delete them but I go through kindles fast buying and selling so I never have many on one at a time. I usually keep a kindle 8 to 12 months on average.

        The Goodreads integration is very disappointing or I have not figured it out yet, which is possible. I was hoping I could update my reading progress status within the book or the kindle but it seems I cannot. Again, maybe I just have not figured it out yet but I don’t think so. On Goodreads I sometimes put in the info of where I am in the book at that time and it keeps that info so I can see my progress day by day or week by week for longer books. Most I am sure do not care one iota about that but I sure do. No real problems with the update though after I deleted my folders. I would update it again if my kindle had to be reset to factory settings.

  5. Zebras Says:

    Bufo:

    Slightly off topic.. but I thought you would like to know I got picked on that Penguin web site “First to Read.” To read Mrs. Lincoln’s Rival. So far stumped by the download instructions. But will have a go at it all at home tonight.

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Zebras!

      That’s great! I didn’t hear back on the one I requested, so I assume I didn’t get it. 🙂

      If you want to share the download instructions, I’d be interested in seeing them…and might be able to suggest something to help.

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