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Book vs. Kindle vs. iPhone vs. Audio Book

In The Chronicle of Higher Education, the university dean of William E. Macaulay Honors College at the City University of New York reads Little Dorrit on four different devices and tells us what she learned from the experience.

I found her comments useful and interesting in general, not just for readers of novels. She has good insights into the utility and attractiveness of these different devices (if I may call a Penguin paperback a “device”!). She has her own preferences (“The iPhone is a Kindle killer”), but gives you enough information to help you draw your own conclusions.

Amidst all the hype and speculation and technological predictions about ebooks and multimedia, this is the first really useful article I have come across that gave me a good sense of the strengths and weaknesses of these tools. She even quotes some of her friends who repeat the hype and speculations that we hear so often.

This is the first thing I have read that makes me believe that someone may actually prefer reading a hearing on an iPhone!

Be prepared!

Of course, this is all from the user’s perspective. She does not provide the perspective of the archivist, preservationist, or privacy-advocate. My wife (who adores taking her Kindle along when she travels) says everyone who stops her and asks to see it asks the same question: “Can I share Kindle books with others?” And her sad response is always, “No, Amazon does not allow you to share.”

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