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Old 12-03-2009, 05:45 PM   #1
Steve Rindsberg
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Default Software update for Kindle 2

There's a free software update for Kindle 2. It promises longer battery life, the ability to change page orientation and a native PDF reader.

This last means that you can simply copy PDFs from your computer to the Kindle and read them; no need to go through Amazon's email conversion process.

I just updated mine.

The PDF reader does read PDFs, at least all I've thrown at it so far. It displays a PDF page scaled to the size of the Kindle screen, so any PDF created with printing to letter/A4 in mind is so squinty as to be unreadable. Flipping the display to landscape helps but not nearly enough to make these PDFs usable on the Kindle.

Very. Heavy. Sigh.

Some PDFs will be usable. Most won't.

O well. It does come with some new screensaver pictures. Ralph Ellison. Sea Critters. Not sure what else, as it seems quite partial to the original ones.

   
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Old 12-04-2009, 06:10 AM   #2
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But if you plan on storing a PDF on your Kindle, you can format it especially. I realize that is not the normal way of the world, but for someone who is used to adapting to different formats and sizes, it isn’t that bad.

Too bad they didn’t make it possible to use text files directly. Or provide a utility so we can make our own formatted Amazon Kindle files without their help.

But better than nothing. If the battery life increases, that is good.

   
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Old 12-04-2009, 07:22 AM   #3
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But if you plan on storing a PDF on your Kindle, you can format it especially. I realize that is not the normal way of the world, but for someone who is used to adapting to different formats and sizes, it isn’t that bad.

Too bad they didn’t make it possible to use text files directly. Or provide a utility so we can make our own formatted Amazon Kindle files without their help.

But better than nothing. If the battery life increases, that is good.
Assuming that I have the source document, sure. But most often I'm using tech docs that I've downloaded in PDF format to start, so no help there.

And there are utilities that can reformat at least some PDFs into mobi format, and sending a PDF for conversion/getting it returned by email rather than wirelessly is still free, I think. Converted PDFs don't preserve the original page formatting, of course, but considering that the new native PDF reader does and that the results are unreadable in some cases, that's not always a bad thing. <g>

   
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Old 12-04-2009, 11:21 AM   #4
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Converted PDFs don't preserve the original page formatting, of course, but considering that the new native PDF reader does and that the results are unreadable in some cases, that's not always a bad thing. <g>
I still remember the promise of PDF, way back when. Guess it’s harder than it seemed.

   
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Old 12-04-2009, 01:24 PM   #5
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I still remember the promise of PDF, way back when. Guess it’s harder than it seemed.
Isn't everything? (looks in mirror. Um. no.)

I think newer PDF versions have some sort of support for reflowing text but that may also need to be supported in the creating app? Dunno, really.

Oh, but after you mentioned it, I went back and checked ... you *can* send plain text files to the little fella and have them appear.

   
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Old 12-04-2009, 01:52 PM   #6
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Isn't everything? (looks in mirror. Um. no.)

I think newer PDF versions have some sort of support for reflowing text but that may also need to be supported in the creating app? Dunno, really.

Oh, but after you mentioned it, I went back and checked ... you *can* send plain text files to the little fella and have them appear.
Aha! That’s useful.

Guess I need to play around with it.

   
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Old 12-04-2009, 05:00 PM   #7
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Aha! That’s useful.

Guess I need to play around with it.
Just hook it up via the USB cable; it'll mount as a new drive that has a couple of folders on it. Drag stuff into the Documents folder, eject the drive and you're good to go.

   
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