Saturday, July 30, 2011

Kobo Krazy

Borders Bookstore is going out of business.

Borders Bookstore sells the Kobo eReader.

The school the kids go to has decided to go with the Kobo, which apparently will continue to be supported by a website and will still have books available for purchase.

Local Borders stores, though, will only have them available, and at a clearance price, until they run out.

And i thought Borders closing wouldn't affect my world much one way or the other.

Then i got the email from the kid's school suggesting i get myself down to Borders immediately! if not sooner! and take advantage of this opportunity!

Thus i was at Borders within 20 minutes, and found myself the proud new procurer of 3 Kobo eReaders and a Kobo account i can use to buy more books, all for about what it used to cost to buy just one and a half of the devices.

It seems this was done because the reader comes with 100 books preloaded, all of them classics, many of which they will be reading in school.

To be blunt, i am a very reluctant convert to the whole eReader idea. Yes, i know many bibliophiles have embraced the technology wholeheartedly, but i had not. Not just because i am first cousin to a Luddite and took two years just to figure out how to take a picture on a cell phone, although that is true. It was because of the Kindle snafu.

For those who don't remember, Amazon apparently sold George Orwell's Animal Farm and 1984 to their Kindle subscribers, who woke up one day to find both books simply missing from their readers. Amazon had erased them upon learning that the publisher did not have the rights to sell these as ebooks. No warning, just a refund.

So it turns out that the company that sells you these books can take them away. No, they aren't supposed to according to their own terms of use, which is why there was such a hue and cry over the Amazon Kindle debacle. Yet my fear would be having a book only in that format, and having someone decide that particular book was forbidden for some reason, and it gets deleted.

No, it's not likely. Lots would have to go wrong in our society before someone would be able to wield such influence and get such things done. It still added more hesitation to my already recalcitrant-about-trying-new-technology nature.

Now, i've got not choice. We now have 3 of the things in the house, and a $10 gift card credited so i can buy more books, and apparently there are thousands available free through Project Gutenberg and others sites.

Yes, it's going to be convenient, being able to take my library with me. Yes, when the kids aren't using them, i'm going to; with 3 in the house, there will probably be a free one somewhere most of the time, and the desktop version on the computer as well that i can access any time.

Somehow, it still doesn't seem like something with which to snuggle down in front of a cozy fire on a cold night.

We'll see.

Today is

Canmore Folk Music Festival -- Canmore, AB, Canada (through Aug. 1, Alberta's longest running folk festival)

Father-in-Law Day

Feast of the Throne -- Morocco

Festival of Fortuna Huiusque Diei -- Ancient Roman Calendar ("Fortune of the Present Day")

Herbal Ballooning -- Fairy Calendar

Independence Day -- Vanuatu

Iroquois Green Corn Ceremony -- thanksgiving for the maize harvest, through Aug. 5

Marseillaise Day -- France

Mi'kmaq Pilgrimage to St. Ann Mission -- Mi'kmaq First Nations of Canada and Maine

National Cheesecake Day

National Eisteddfod of Wales -- Ebbw Vale, Blaenau Gwent, Wales (through Aug. 6, the largest Welsh cultural event of the year)

"Paddle for Perthes" Disease Awareness Day (to promote awareness of the children's condition called Legg-Calve-Perthes disease)

Sumiyoshi Matsuri -- Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine, Osaka, Japan (Osaka's last major summer festival, through Aug. 1)

St. Abdon's Day

St. Sennen's Day

Sumida River Fireworks Display -- Tokyo, Japan (for those who just can't get enough fireworks, this show lasts an hour)

Tour de USA -- the Woodstock of motorcycle events, LA to DC and back, to raise awareness of prostate cancer, through Sept. 15; join in for a daily 150 mile segment when they pass through your state!

Birthdays Today

Hilary Swank, 1974
Tom Green, 1971
Vivica A. Fox, 1964
Lisa Kudrow, 1963
Laurence Fishburne, 1961
Kate Bush, 1958
Delta Burke, 1956
Jean Reno, 1948
Arnold Schwarzenegger, 1947
Paul Anka, 1941
Peter Bogdanovich, 1939
Buddy Guy, 1936
Edd "Kookie" Byrnes, 1933
Thomas Sowell, 1930
Sid Krofft, 1929
Christine McGuire, 1926
Henry W. Bloch, 1922
Casey Stengel, 1891
Henry Ford, 1863
Georg Wilhelm von Siemens, 1855
Emily Bronte, 1818

Today in History

City of Baghdad is founded, 762
The First Defenestration of Prague, 1419
Christopher Columbus lands at Guanaja in the Bay Islands off the coast of Honduras during his fourth voyage, 1502
At Ticonderoga (now Crown Point, New York), Samuel de Champlain shoots and kills two Iroquois chiefs, which set the tone for French-Iroquois relations for the next one hundred years, 1608
In Jamestown, Virginia, the first European style representative assembly in the Americas, the House of Burgesses, convenes for the first time, 1619
An earthquake in Naples, Italy kills 10,000 people, 1629
Baltimore, Maryland is founded, 1729
Bartolomeo Rastrelli presents the newly-built Catherine Palace to Empress Elizabeth and her courtiers, 1756
First ascent of Grand Combin, one of the highest summits in the Alps,1859
Chief Pocatello of the Shoshone tribe signs the Treaty of Box Elder, agreeing to stop the harassment of emigrant trails in southern Idaho and northern Utah, 1863
In Montevideo, Uruguay wins the first Football World Cup, 1930
Premiere of Walt Disney's Flowers and Trees, the first cartoon short to use Technicolor and the first Academy Award winning cartoon short, 1932
A joint resolution of the U.S. Congress is signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower, authorizing In God We Trust as the U.S. national motto, 1956
US President Lyndon B. Johnson signs the Social Security Act of 1965 into law, establishing Medicare and Medicaid, 1965
David Scott and James Irwin on Apollo Lunar Module module, Falcon, land with first Lunar Rover on the moon, 1971
Six Royal Canadian Army Cadets are killed and fifty-four injured in an accidental grenade blast at CFB Valcartier Cadet Camp, 1974
Jimmy Hoffa disappears, 1975
In Mexico, the last 'old style' Volkswagen Beetle rolls off the assembly line, 2003

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