After several more weeks with the Kindle, I have a new set of wish list items for Kindle 2.0. In no particular order, they are as follows:
1. Ability to hold down a page as you scroll through previous pages like you would in a real book. There have been a couple instances where I’ve forgotten how some character is related to others, and I’d like to go back to where he/she was first mentioned without losing my place. I know I can set up a bookmark and then return to it later, but what I’m looking for is more of a temporary bookmark, so that it’s not there anymore once I return to my place.
2. The spot to charge your Kindle should not be located on the bottom, as this makes resting the Kindle on your lap while charging it highly inconvenient.
3. Since I only rarely use the internet on the Kindle, this really isn’t that big of a deal, but it’d be nice to be able to charge the Kindle via USB in more than a trickle capacity.
4. A better way to track where you are in a book. Currently you have to count how many dark dots you’ve covered out of 50 to figure out a sense of where you are in the book. Even just breaking up the 50 into more manageable fractions would be helpful to know if you’re, say, a quarter of the way through a book.
I’m also imagining a pop-up illustration of a book spine that would show you how much you’ve read vs. how much you still have to go…Amazon SDK anyone??? Or maybe just an alt command?
And really, page numbers would really be a lot more helpful than “locations.” Referencing the page number of the print edition, even if modifiers had to be used depending on what font size you were using, would be great. For example, “page 113-5 out of 1050” would signify that I’m on the fifth chunk of page 113 of the print edition. That way people can actually cite stuff they read on the Kindle, without having to cross-reference a printed copy.
5. A better way to highlight. After thinking about it, a stylus would probably be inferior to having a trackpoint (IBM Thinkpad style) or rolling mouse (Blackberry style) because 1) people are liable to lose it, and 2) the Kindle currently does not allow a touchscreen (recent reviews on Sony’s eReader 700 also note that the touchscreen has led to blurry lettering…kind of the most important feature of an ereader!!). But in any case, it’s really necessary to be able to start/end highlighting at a specific word, instead of the beginning of a line.
6. In a similar vein, a trackpoint would also help facilitate more direct choices for referencing definitions in the dictionary (the lookup feature also takes way too long to load right now–11 seconds by my own experiment. I want to read not wait!). You should also be able to search the dictionary from the home screen. It would also be nice to keep a log of all the words you have looked up (someone in the forums suggested auto creating a Word table) to reference later. Gotta love vocab practice as an adult!
7. Smarter downloads. I definitely see the value in having, say, the Wall Street Journal download directly to my Kindle so I can read it anywhere and not have to deal with all the paper and inky fingers. However, I currently miss about 30% of my papers since I forget to turn on the wireless at some point in the day (and if you missed it, you missed it). It’d be awesome if I could program the Kindle to turn on the wireless for, say, 10 minutes each morning, to make sure all my newspapers and blogs get downloaded for the day. They would then be stored for a few days before I could read them at my leisure. (It’d also be nice to be able to delete particular issues of newspapers in the Content Manager, as opposed to deleting the whole publication.)
8. Revamp the keyboard completely. The current keyboard is ugly and difficult to use because the buttons are so small and require a lot of pressure to register. Assuming a touch screen is not an option, it could be made a whole lot prettier, and probably would benefit from being flush with the rest of the device so people could rest their hands there comfortably while reading (I currently rest my thumbs on the white space above or on the left flap of the case/the scroll wheel windor on the right…thus avoiding practically all accidental touches on the next/previous page buttons. I actually love that they are so large, and hope Amazon doesn’t change the size or placement of them!!! And honestly the process of turning a page on Sony’s eReader sounds so cumbersome…I want to flick my finger and continue reading, not have a laborious process in and of itself).