Archive for August 8, 2008

Micro Fondle: ECTACO jetBook eBook Reader

August 8, 2008

I stopped into J&R today and happened to peer into the cabinet housing the Sony Reader.

I saw something I’d never seen before. In fact, I wasn’t certain when I’d last heard about it. Further, I thought it was something only being sold in Asia!

It was the ECTACO jetBook eBook Reader!

Photos taken today, Friday, August 8, 2008 with the Philips crapcam.

L-R: Sony Reader red cover, 2 Sony Readers, the jetBook

Another angle of same lineup

jetBook on, firstmost menu

Library of eBooks

eBook open in portrait mode

eBook open in landscape mode

The screen held under direct light

Another attempt at direct light (FAIL!)
Note here my thumb is over paging controls!

Better direct light, but crapcam does its FAIL!
Note here my thumb is over a collection of control buttons

What these photos don’t convey:

* How small it is! Really, it makes the otherwise svelte and friendly Sony Reader look ginormous and old!

* The eBooks are all in Russian! Flummoxed me! I don’t know why they were. All menus and controls were in English.

* How they ripped off mimicked paid tribute to Sony’s excellent eBook reading design with many buttons just where Sony has them.

* This is not an eInk screen. It is reflective VGA TFT! There is no flash when turning pages! In addition, not photographed, there are overlaid menus (like Kindle sometimes has)!

* The power button is on the bottom — I mean literally, the bottom edge. It’s tiny, about 3-4mm. It presses in, even though it looks like a slider.

* The top edge has an SD slot and a USB port covered with a rubber lift-off latch.

* On the left side is some weird chromed plastic thing that I couldn’t figure out the function of. It seems to slide up and down, but what it does, I couldn’t ascertain.

* J&R’s price: just $299.00. The website lists it as a whopping $349.00 (yes, go ahead and laugh!).

I didn’t realize when I micro fondled it that it wasn’t an eInk screen. I did notice that it was a very crisp and a very white screen and that when I turned pages, something seemed to be different (it’d been so long since I tried the Reader, I’d forgotten about the flashing!).

There’s a detailed comparison table pitting it against the Sony Reader and the Amazon Kindle.

Here’s the cut to the FAIL:

.TXT, .PDF, .JPG, .GIF, .PNG, .BMP, .MP3, free format

Basically, unformatted text or slit-your-wrists-in-frustration PDF.


If I wanted crappy unformatted text files, I can do that on my rotten LifeDrive! But I don’t want unformatted text files, and that’s why I don’t read any of the free eBooks ECTACO touts in that table.

I’ll have to read some of the reviews that have been published. I missed seeing all of them when they ran (I bet most of you did too!). I suspect all of them lament the same thing I do: the inability of it to do even HTML formatted text.

Right now, with the $199 iPhone (and $299 iPod Touch) offering eReader formatted ebooks (via eReader) and hopefully-universal ePub formatted ebooks (via Stanza), I’m really hard-pressed to imagine who would wind up buying the ECTACO jetBook eBook Reader — at either $299 or the website’s staggering $349.00 price!

Gasoline On August 8, 2008

August 8, 2008

Photo taken today, Friday, August 8, 2008 on Satan Staten Island with the Philips crapcam.

Another four-cents price drop.

Diesel the same price.

I would have had a picture of the other station, but the crapcam cut off the prices! The other station’s prices are identical.

I wouldn’t count on bargain food any time soon. Or ever.

Educate yourself!

Previously here:

Gasoline On July 31, 2008
Gasoline On July 27, 2008
Gasoline On July 9, 2008
Gasoline On July 3, 2008
Gasoline On June 28, 2008
Gasoline On June 21, 2008
Gasoline On June 12, 2008
Gasoline On June 8, 2008
Gasoline On May 31, 2008
Gasoline On May 26, 2008
Gasoline On May 21, 2008
Gasoline On May 18, 2008
Gasoline On March 15, 2008
Oh. My. God.

Blog Notes: Short Day

August 8, 2008

In about a half hour I’ll be vacating the PC and entering the analog world for an investigational walkabout.

I hadn’t planned this, but the opportunity came up, so I better do it now.

I might be back in about five or six hours with a post or two.

During my absence, the browser will be closed and PC will be off, so no Twitter.

Be seeing you!

Reference: ePub Reader Software

August 8, 2008

ePub Reader Software

Several different software programs either support or plan on supporting the ePub format.

The following is a list of the programs that claim to support the format, and my testing of it.

Apple Vs. Microsoft In TWO Pictures

August 8, 2008

Oh, I’d planned a series of these. But then I found The Two.

The two pictures that say it all!

The symbolism!

Mac OS X: The OS For Manly Men!

A Warning To Cat Owners

August 8, 2008

Man died after contracting E.coli from his cat

Victor Lepford, 71, contracted the bug from his cat Poppet, which was probably passed to him in the process of clearing up its waste without wearing gloves.

Coroner Alan Crickmore recorded a verdict of accidental death on Mr Lepford, the former director of a car hire firm, who lived with his wife Eunice.

Not a nice way to go.

R.I.P.: Bernie Brillstein

August 8, 2008

R.I.P. Bernie Brillstein

Nikki Finke has not written an obit.

It’s a love letter.

And the finest writing you will probably read all this month.

Why oh why aren’t there people like him for writers?