>I wouldn’t really describe myself as one on the forefront of technology. In fact, despite my general computer savvy and my love of things Library 2.0, I’m rather old-ladyish in my daily life. I lug my groceries in a wheeled cart, I prefer anything vintage over anything new, and I get visibly agitated when people don’t dress up for the orchestra. I try to only buy hardcover books, and old copies if I can manage it, because I revel in my personal library looking a certain way, all dusty spines of muted colors with that old book smell that I wish some perfumerie would bottle for sale. So why do I have an increasingly rigid techno-boner over the Amazon Kindle?
The most alluring thing about this slim little vixen isn’t the super long battery life, or the service plan free wireless access, or the unbelievable storage capability, or the undeniable environmental improvement over the newspaper (although they all make me foam a bit at the mouth, be sure) but the element that really gets me going is something I’ve longed for since the advent of the e-book (and maybe even the computer): a screen that looks just like paper! I’ve been waiting for this innovation like some Christian fundamentalists wait for the rapture. I mean, I love my stylish chunky frames as much as the next 20something would-be librarian, but I certainly wouldn’t need them if the blare of the computer screen didn’t tax my blue irises so. The idea that I can download an entire book anywhere in under a minute and read it pain free and not lug 3 or 4 books in my bag at once? Goddamn if that’s not a marvel of technology.
I’m cowed by the idea, though, that I’ve had these stirrings before. I was initially wooed by the siren song of the iPhone when it was announced at MacWorld, and would get in very nerdly conversations in bars about how amazing it was going to be. I now have a few friends who have one, and although there is a palpable ain’t-it-cool factor still, some of the missing elements (and how slow the download time can be) resigns me to wait until a second generation, a resignation my wallet heartily thanks me for. So I guess this is a call to my early adopter friends out there, when you see the Kindle, kiss it once for me. Tell me if it has all the zazz that it does in my mind. If so I’ll squirrel away for a while and maybe around this time next year I’ll know for myself.