There’s a software update coming to the Kindle, with some features that I suspect users will very much enjoy.
First, page numbers, not locations, so as to make the citing of passages easier for people who cite things regularly. 2 WOOHOOs and a fist pump for that.
Second, public notes. And I quote: “Any Kindle user—including authors, their fans, book reviewers, professors and passionate readers everywhere—can opt-in
to share their thoughts on book passages and ideas with friends, family members, colleagues, and the greater Kindle community of people who love to read.” (emphasis mine) So, hold up, instead of changing the software and updating it, then having the internets and the Twitters explode with the news that someone’s made your phone number, address, underwear size and most recent cholesterol number unless you go turn off the “Expose My Ass” setting, you’ve decided that people should OPT-IN to share their notes on a book?
Wow, Amazon. You and I don’t always agree on everything, but you get a high five for that one.
Third: social network rating and sharing: “If you’re reading and happen across a passage you’d like to share with friends or followers through social networking sites, Kindle gives you the option to post it to Facebook or Twitter. You can also share your rating of any Kindle Book you’re reading through your social media networks.
Note: Sharing Highlights and Notes on Facebook and Twitter is not available in Germany.”
Why is that? I mean, I’m sure logically it’s because of permission or law or telecomm rules or something, but perhaps instead it’s because maybe Amazon doesn’t like German beer?
Anyway, I dig the rating feature, as perhaps it will lend some balance to the garden of crap that is Amazon reviews because making it easier to rate a book, even without comments, will offset the crazysauce. Moreover, given the information I learned from Michael Tamblyn’s presentation at Tools of Change, specifically that once users in the Kobo app logged into Facebook from within the app itself, those users read books for much longer once they were connected. I don’t think this is exactly the same thing, but I’m fascinated by the idea that feeding that now-present need for digital connection even while reading might create more reading time.
I am curious about the updates, and to see if anyone uses them – more valid and less silly Amazon reviews would be awesome, in my opinion. Would you use these features, if you have a Kindle? What digital reader feature do you most want (aside from an end to geographic restrictions and DRM, obviously)?