Thursday, February 18, 2010

The Real Picasso

Picasso: The Bull in Winter Pt. 1

Ep.1 Waking Up in the Universe...Growing Up in the Universe___Richard Dawkins

Almost a one-hour video clip on Life, and the subject of Science. Free Education on the Web...nothing beats! To make oneself a copy, download this free YouTube Downloader Application for better quality picture: http://youtubedownload.altervista.org Thanks to my slow connection, I just had to do this and watch it in its entirety...including hopefully, Episodes 2-5 of Growing Up in the Universe.

OK Go - This Too Shall Pass

OK Go - This Too Shall Pass from OK Go on Vimeo.

Official video for OK Go's "This Too Shall Pass" off of the New Album "Of the Blue Colour of the Sky". The video was filmed live and features the Notre Dame marching band. Directed by Brian L. Perkins and OK Go.

Buy the album here: http://bit.ly/okgootbcots

And download an mp3 of the live audio from this video for FREE at our website: http://www.okgo.net

Intelligent YouTube Channels

Intelligent YouTube Channels

March 13th, 2008

Below, we have gathered together some of the most intelligent video collections on YouTube. A great place to find culturally enriching video…

General

  • @GoogleTalks
    • Google has lots of famous visitors speaking at its headquarters, and they’re all recorded and neatly presented here.
  • Al Jazeera English
    • The Middle Eastern news service, which has generated its share of controversy, now airs broadcasts in English and presents them here.
  • American Museum of Natural History
  • Amnesty International
    • The leading human rights organization brings you various videos outlining human rights concerns across the globe, and the work they’re doing to improve conditions.
  • Artists Space
    • Artists Space supports contemporary artists working in the visual arts, video and electronic media, performance, architecture and design, and it promotes artistic experimentation and dialog in contemporary culture.
  • Aspen Institute
    • An international nonprofit organization dedicated to fostering enlightened leadership and open-minded dialogue.
  • Bad Astronomy
    • Bad Astronomy is devoted to debunking myths and misconceptions about astronomy, and also to slap down without apology bad thinking in all its forms.
  • BBC
    • A series of videos promoting programs coming out of Britain’s main media outlet. Unfortunately many of these videos are short and not entirely substantive. A missed opportunity.
  • BBC Worldwide
    • Ditto.
  • Big Think
    • This collection brings you videos featuring some of today’s leading thinkers, movers and shakers.
  • BoingBoingTV
    • These videos are brought to you by the makers of the very popular BoingBoing blog.
  • British Film Institute National Archive
    • The BFI (British Film Institute) promotes understanding and appreciation of Britain’s rich film and television heritage and culture. And it claims to have the “world’s largest and most diverse film and TV archive.”
  • Brooklyn Museum
    • A fairly rich lineup of videos exploring the collections at Brooklyn’s main art museum.
  • Canal Educatif
    • CED is a philanthropic producer of free high-quality educational videos in the domains of arts, economics and science.
  • Charlie Rose
    • PBS interviewer Charlie Rose presents segments of his nightly interviews.
  • Cinetic
    • Cinetic brings audiences the latest, greatest and classic festival favorites from around the globe. From award-winners by veteran filmmakers to up-and-coming talent telling new stories, Cinetic prides itself on being at the forefront of quality indie film in the digital space.
  • Citizen Tube
    • YouTube’s own channel presents videos dealing with the American political process and the 2008 election.
  • Computer History Museum
    • A good number of videos that delve into computers, networking, and semiconductors.
  • Council on Foreign Relations
    • A resource designed to provide insight into the complex international issues challenging policymakers and citizens alike.
  • CSPAN
    • Videos that keep a close eye on the inner-workings of the American political process.
  • FORA.tv
    • Delivers video presentations from the world’s great writers, leaders, activists and thinkers.
  • Guardian Unlimited TV
    • The Guardian brings you videos that make the television world its focus.
  • Gizmodo
  • Google Tech Talks
    • The name kind of says it all.
  • Harvard University Press
    • HUP, a major publisher of non-fiction, scholarly, and general interest books, brings you videos with new authors.
  • HBO
    • Provides outtakes from new HBO productions. The videos are all short and largely promotional. Give us some beef, sirs.
  • KQED on Demand- San Francisco
    • Media provided by the public broadcasting company in the San Francisco Bay Area. I drink at this well daily.
  • MoMA
    • Videos highlighting the art collection, public programs, and temporary exhibitions at The Museum of Modern Art in New York City.
  • Monty Python Channel
    • Their videos have been circulating around YouTube for a while. Now, the comedians have their own channel. A good place to have a laugh.
  • National Geographic
    • The collection is rich, but the videos are short. Another instance where the provider could use the medium to offer more substance/depth.
  • New Scientist.
    • Videos and vodcasts covering science, technology, space, the environment and a whole lot more. An international team of expert journalists brings you the latest innovations and ideas in science and technology, from the wonderful to the worrying to the weird.
  • NOVA
    • Short video outtakes from PBS’s popular science program.
  • Oscar’s Channel
    • The official channel of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is the only place to relive favorite Oscar® moments and see exclusive interviews with the talented film professionals who comprise the Academy membership. Includes some good vintage clips.
  • Philip Scott Johnson
    • Some great videos that put art in motion.
  • PBS
    • Promotes new PBS programming with painfully short videos.
  • PoliticsTV
    • Political videos with a progressive bent.
  • Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting
    • The Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting’s mission is to promote in-depth coverage of international affairs, focusing on topics that have been under-reported, mis-reported – or not reported at all.
  • ReelNASA
    • Videos show the latest happenings at NASA and new developments in space exploration.
  • Reuters Video
    • The latest video from Reuters.
  • Richard Dawkins
    • The channel features talks by Richard Dawkins, the Oxford evolutionary biologist, as well as others influenced by his thought.
  • ScienCentral
    • ScienCentral, Inc. produces science and technology content for television, video, and the web. From broadcast news features to educational products, they cover the medical, environmental, and technological issues that affect daily life.
  • Slate
    • Video from Slate Magazine
  • Steve Spangler Science Show
    • Catch the videos produced by a teacher nationally known for making science fun.
  • Sundance
    • Provides video clips from original series and films airing on the Sundance Channel.
  • The Alcove
    • A program that features interviews with various influential thinkers.
  • The American Museum of Natural History
    • This channel provides a rare glimpse into the Museum’s exhibitions, scientific research, public programs and educational endeavors. Videos presented by the Museum highlight its global mission to advance scientific discovery and increase understanding of nature and human cultures.
  • The Commonwealth Club (San Francisco)
    • Videos coming out of the nation’s oldest and largest public affairs forum, presenting topics ranging across politics, culture, and society.
  • The Commoncraft Show
    • The Common Craft Show is a series of short explanatory videos by Lee and Sachi LeFever. The goal is to fight complexity with simple tools and plain language.
  • The Davos Question
    • Every year, global leaders attend the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland to discuss how to better the world. Here you get to see what they have to say.
  • The Kahn Academy
    • This channel features over 800 videos that will teach students the ins and outs of algebra, geometry, trigonometry, calculus, statistics, finance, physics, economics and more. The clips have been recorded by Salman Khan.
  • The Library of Congress
    • Timeless treasures and contemporary presentations from the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Features recordings dating from the earliest Edison films to the present.
  • The New York Times
    • All the news that’s fit to stream.
  • The New Yorker
    • The official video channel of The New Yorker magazine.
  • The Nobel Prize
    • Brings you fascinating insights into the minds of current and past Nobel Laureates.
  • The Onion News Network
    • A good dose of funny videos from The Onion. Good for when you need some comic relief.
  • The Real News
    • The Real News Network is a global online video news network that listens to and is dependent solely on its audience. No ads. No government subsidies. No corporate sponsorship.
  • The Research Channel
    • Based out of the University of Washington, the ResearchChannel brings together content from leading research and academic institutions.
  • The World Bank
    • Videos coming out of the institution whose goal is to rid the world of poverty..
  • The YouTube Screening Room
    • Provided by YouTube itself, this collection presents high quality, independent films to web users and promises to roll out four new films every two weeks.
  • Thirteen WNET (PBS New Your)
    • Features content from New York City’s flagship public television station.
  • YouTube Movies
    • YouTube now hosts a series of complete studio movies on its site. Above, I’ve linked you directly to the documentary/biography section. But feel free to peruse the larger collection. You’ll find some good films there.
  • TED Talks
    • Generally engaging videos coming out of the annual TED conference. Features important thinkers from different walks of life.
  • Travel Channel TV
    • The Travel Channel brings you around the world on YouTube.
  • Vanity Fair Magazine
    • Videos from the magazine launched in 1913.
  • WNYC Radio
    • Videos provided by WNYC, New York Public Radio, the largest public radio station in the US.
  • World Economic Forum
    • The World Economic Forum is an independent international organization committed to improving the state of the world by engaging leaders in partnerships to shape global, regional and industry agendas.
  • Yad Vashem
    • Containing the world’s largest repository of information on the Holocaust, Yad Vashem is a leader in Holocaust education, commemoration, research and documentation.
  • 92nd Street Y
    • Pretty much anyone and everyone on the cultural radar passes through the 92nd Y in NYC.

Universities

Spotlighted Collections

Other University Collections

  • On this page, you’ll find some of the highest quality open courses out there.

Related posts:

  1. 70 Signs of Intelligent Life at YouTube
  2. YouTube Gets Smart: The Launch of New University Channels
  3. 10 Signs of Intelligent Life at YouTube (Smart Video Collections)

by Dan Colman |

Intelligent Video: The Top Cultural & Educational Video Sites

Intelligent Video: The Top Cultural & Educational Video Sites

Looking for great cultural and educational video? Then you’ve come to the right place. Below, we have compiled a list of 46 sites that feature intelligent videos. This list was produced with the help of our faithful readers, and it will grow over time. If you find it useful, please share it as widely as you can. And if we’re missing good sites, please list them in the comments below.

ABC Documentaries: This site pulls together some of the best documentaries aired on ABC television in Australia.


Academic Earth: Some call this “the Hulu for education.” The idea is to take academic videos from top-notch universities and let users watch them with a very user-friendly interface. Though a young site, many users are giving it high marks.

Arkive.org: The site gathers together “the very best films and photographs of the world’s species into one centralised digital library, to create a unique audio-visual record of life on Earth.” A great site for naturalists and nature lovers.


Australian Screen Archive: The Australian National Film and Sound Archive provides free and worldwide access to over 1,000 film and television titles – a treasury of down-under video 100 years in the making.


Babelgum: Babelgum’s goal is to act as an international ‘glue’, bringing a huge range of professional and semi-professional content to a global audience – like a modern-day Tower of Babel. They’re also making an effort to get their content to smartphones. They have an iPhone app now, and apps for other phones on the horizon.


BestOnlineDocumentaries: As one reader describes it, “This site is a bit out of date and some of the links are broken, but it’s still a great compilation of online documentaries.” For more documentaries, you should also see Snagfilms mentioned below.


BigIdeas: This show, which comes out of Canada, ”offers a variety of thought-provoking topics which range across politics, culture, economics, art history, science…. The program has introduced Ontario viewers to the impressive brainpower of people like Niall Ferguson on American empire, Daniel Libeskind on architecture, Robert Fisk on the Middle East, George Steiner on the demise of literacy, Camille Paglia on aesthetic education, Tariq Ramadan on being a Western Muslim, Noam Chomsky on U.S. politics, Leon Kass on dying, Janice Stein on accountability and governance.” See the full list of videos here.


BigThink: “Offers high quality video interviews and insight from the world’s most influential experts in business, entertainment, education, religion and media.” BigThink was founded partly with the help of Larry Summers, formerly the president of Harvard, now Obama’s right hand economic man.


Bloggingheads.TV: We had several readers highly recommend bloggingheads.tv. Here is how bloggingheads has been described elsewhere: “a political, world events, philosophy, and science video blog discussion site in which the participants take part in an active back and forth conversation via webcam which is then broadcast online to viewers.”


Channel N: Get brain & behavior videos with Sandra Kiume. Part of PsychCentral.


CultureCatch: CultureCatch.com has over 160 half-hour interviews with today’s seminal artists in film, theater, music and literature. Here you’ll find in-depth interviews with smart culture individuals dissecting art, comedy, fashion, film, music, politics, television, theater, even cooking.


Edge.org Video: Edge.org is run by John Brockman, literary agent to some of the most important science writers in the US and beyond. You’ll find videos featuring these thinkers on the Edge’s web site.


Europa Film Treasures: Thanks to Europa Film Treasures, you can spend hours looking back through an archive of European film. Theses films range from “comedy to science fiction, from westerns to animation, from erotic to ethnological movies.” Highly recommended by our readers.


Explore.org: A non-profit that showcases the good works of non-profits internationally. Lots of great educational topics from Tiananmen Square to Jerusalem to Orcas. The site itself hosts tons of film and photographs.


Folkstreams: A collection of short films and mini-documentaries on American roots culture, including music, folkart and traditional customs.


Fora.TV: A large site that gathers video from live events, lectures, and debates taking place at the world’s top universities, think tanks and conferences.


Forum Network: PBS and NPR have jointly launched the Forum Network where you will find free lectures online. I expect this to be a rich resource as time goes by.


Free Documentaries Online: The name says it all.


Global Oneness Project: Global Oneness produces documentary films and interviews that are exploring our modern day struggles within the ecological, economical, and social systems and how these battles aren’t isolated but part of a interdependent whole. Features over 200 short films and interviews.


Hulu’s News & Information Channel: Within this channel, you’ll find some intelligent programs. It includes documentaries and biographies, science programs, news, and more. In the past, we pulled together a list of high-quality feature films available on Hulu. Catch it here. And know that Hulu unfortunately limits this programming to a US audience — a policy that really needs to change.


Intelligent Life on YouTube: Yours truly created a handy list of the intelligent video collections available on YouTube. Have a look and also see the list of our favorite individual YouTube videos.


Internet Archive – Feature Films: This archive of feature films contains some important classics from the 1920s, 30s, 40s and 50s. We’ve featured ten good ones in a previous post.


Learner.org: Annenberg Media presents an impressive video collection that will appeal to lifelong learners and teachers. It includes a lot of high quality programming on American history, world literature and music, science and much more. Thanks Julie for the tip.


LinkTV: “Global and national news, uncompromising documentaries, diverse cultural programs, connecting you to the world.”


Living Room Candidate: Television ads have changed our political system, and this site maintains more than 300 commercials from every presidential election since 1952.


Long Now Seminars: Stewart Brand’s Long Now Foundation presents monthly talks that provide a counterpoint to today’s “faster/cheaper” mind set and promote “slower/better” thinking. Theses talks given by prominent thinkers are hosted by FORA.TV.


MeaningofLife.TV: Sponsored by Slate, this site brings you “cosmic thinkers” on camera. Here, you’ll find talks by Karen Armstrong, Freeman Dyson, Stephen Pinker and others.


MITWorld: MIT World “hosts lots of inspiring talks by some of the most innovative thinkers and doers in town.” – Tony


Moving Image Collections: A window to the world’s moving images.


NFB.ca: NFB.ca is a web site where you can watch films produced by the National Film Board of Canada. Offers access to 100s of documentaries, animated films and trailers. You can also access this collection via a free iPhone app.


One World TV: A unique public platform for filmmakers, video journalists, NGOs and just about anyone with an interest in video and a concern for a better world.


Open Book TV: Open Book focuses on the writers and other storytellers living and working in a different spot on the planet each week.


PBS Video: Everyone knows that PBS regularly produces intelligent video. You can watch a good number of their original programs here.


PeoplesArchive: “Dedicated to collecting for posterity the stories of the great thinkers, creators, and achievers of our time.”


Pop!Tech Pop!Casts Videos: Kind of like TED, Pop!Tech features “a community of remarkable people, and an ongoing conversation about science, technology and the future of ideas.” Scroll down to the find their videos.


Psychlectures.com: Reader says: “Although this website doesn’t host video, it brings together all sorts of media (including courses) on the topic of psychology, neuroscience, and psychiatry, for those interested.”


Research Channel: Based out of the University of Washington, the ResearchChannel brings together content from leading research and academic institutions (see member list here), and distributes it to consumers mostly through satellite and cable, but also via the web. iTunesU is a fairly new distribution channel. And even newer is YouTube. (See their channel here.) Get more info on The Research Channel here.


ScholarSpot: A new web site that promises a “free university.” Site is live in beta. Stay tuned for more.


Science Network: As the title suggests, lots of good science here. You can start with this popular program, Beyond Belief, which we previously mentioned on this blog.


SnagFilms: SnagFilms “finds the world’s most compelling documentaries, whether from established heavyweights or first-time filmmakers, and makes them available to a wide audience.” You can watch full-length documentary films for free. Currently includes over 550 films. And, as one reader notes, “The best part … is you can give back to the charitable foundations behind each one of the documentaries.”


Steven Spielberg Film and Video Archive: This online catalog “provides access to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Steven Spielberg Film and Video Archive. The Archive serves as a comprehensive informational and archival resource worldwide for moving image materials pertaining to the Holocaust and related aspects of World War II. ”


TED Talks: Riveting talks by remarkable people, free to the world. The talks largely come from the big annual TED conference. And, hands down, this site is the most frequently recommended by our readers. You can find a handy spreadsheet listing every TED video here.


UbuWeb: “A completely independent resource dedicated to all strains of the avant-garde, ethnopoetics, and outsider arts.”


UChannel: Spearheaded by Princeton University, this video service presents talks on international/political affairs from academic institutions all over the world.


UCTV: Launched in January 2000, University of California Television (UCTV) is a non-commercial channel featuring 24/7 programming from throughout the University of California, the nation’s premier research university made up of ten campuses, three national labs and affiliated institutions.


UWTV: UWTV is an award-winning television channel brought to you by the University of Washington. Offers original, non-commercial educational programming — 24 hours a day, seven days a week. A unique educational resource, UWTV provides its audience with direct access to world-renowned scientists and researchers whose insights and discoveries are changing our world.


VideoActive: Video Active presents a vast collection of television programmes and stills from audiovisual archives across Europe. It also provides articles and comparative analysis on European TV history.


VideoLectures.Net: Based in Eastern Europe, this site provides free access to high quality video lectures presented by distinguished scholars from many fields of science.


WGBH Video Lectures: “The WGBH video collections brings together talks from the world’s leading scientists, educators, policymakers, artists, and authors. Some pieces come from PBS, NPR, Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and The Lowell Institute.”


YouTube hosts a number of intelligent properties worth giving your time to. Some key properties are:

  • YouTube Edu: Finally, YouTube gave us an easy way to separate the wheat from the chaff. Now you can easily watch videos from hundreds of universities worldwide. Includes a large number of free courses. More info here.
  • YouTube Screening Room: The Screening Room presents high quality, independent films to YouTube users and promises to roll out four new films every two weeks. More info here.
  • @Google Talks: Some of the world’s leading thinkers and political players make a point of speaking at Google. You can catch them all here.
  • Intelligent Video Collections: Over time we have created a long list of the smarter video collections available on YouTube. It now features close to 100 video channels. Have a look and let us know what we’re missing.

Related posts:

  1. 50 Intelligent Video Sites
  2. 10 Signs of Intelligent Life at YouTube (Smart Video Collections)
by Dan Colman

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater Animated

Fallingwater from Cristóbal Vila on Vimeo.


Next best thing to owning a place...I guess. ---Ado

Feb. 18, 2010

Sunday, February 7, 2010

British Library to offer free ebook downloads

pic: Jane Austen

MORE than 65,000 19th-century works of fiction from the British Library’s collection are to be made available for free downloads by the public from this spring.

Owners of the Amazon Kindle, an ebook reader device, will be able to view well known works by writers such as Charles Dickens, Jane Austen and Thomas Hardy, as well as works by thousands of less famous authors.

The library’s ebook publishing project, funded by Microsoft, the computer giant, is the latest move in the mounting online battle over the future of books.

While some other services, such as Google Books, offer out-of-copyright works to be downloaded for free, users of the British Library service will be able to read from pages in the original books in the library’s collection.

Most downloadable books on the Kindle are by contemporary authors because they are the most profitable for publishers. Many companies have not yet decided what to charge for older, out-of-copyright books.

While the British Library books — which will include Dickens’s Bleak House, Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and Hardy’s The Mayor of Casterbridge — will be available free online, the public will also be able to order printed copies from Amazon.

Like the onscreen versions, the paperbacks, costing £15-£20, will look like the frequently rare 19th-century editions in the library’s collection — including their typeface and illustrations. Originals of works by Austen and Dickens typically cost at least £250.

“Freeing historic books from the shelves has the potential to revolutionise access to the world’s greatest library resources,” said Lynne Brindley, the library’s chief executive.

Microsoft and the British Library, which by law purchases at least one copy of every book published in the UK, have been scanning the books over the past three years. The library concentrated the first stage of digitisation on the 19th century because the books are out of copyright and so can be offered free. Copyright runs out 70 years after an author’s death.

The library, which receives an annual government grant of £100m, declined to disclose the sum paid by Microsoft, beyond saying it was “a very generous amount”.

Books to be made available will include Victorian classics such as A Strange Story by Edward Bulwer-Lytton and The Story of a Modern Woman by Ella Hepworth Dixon.

Many of the downmarket books known as “penny dreadfuls” will also be made available to the public, including Black Bess by Edward Viles and The Dark Woman by J M Rymer.

Altogether, 35%-40% of the library’s 19th-century printed books — now all digitised — are inaccessible in other public libraries and are difficult to find in second-hand or internet bookshops.

The library hopes to extend the digitisation scheme by scanning books out of copyright dating from the early 20th century. As yet, however, neither Microsoft nor the institution itself have set money aside for the project.

For Lynne Brindley’s article about the digitisation of the British Library’s books, go to timesonline.co.uk/books

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Waiting for My Kindle


Placing the Order:
February 2, 2010


Late last week, Apple launches the iPad, an E-Book reader with Plus capabilities costing $499 or roughly 25,000 PHP. Not really having that much money to spare for another computer gadget, I was simply curious about it thinking it was Apple's answer to Bill Gates' Tablet PC [launched several years ago]...but it is actually a cross between a Netbook and a Smartphone, or as others would call it a bigger, cooler iPod with all available Apps being run on it too. I already own a Viewsonic Tablet PC if all I ever wanted to do with a tablet computer was draw digital art and perhaps post some of them on the web, and maybe even sell some on-line. However, the thought of rekindling my interest for reading sounded too good to pass up...considering I've passed it up for most of my adolescent, and now adult life. And at this point, all I find is time on my hands...and I'm enjoying reading the daily local newspaper more and more, perhaps for the first time in my life. Of course, I find that newsprint ink makes me sneeze every time I start reaching out for the paper.

So I visit Amazon and discover that the whole Kindle Product was already available in the Philippines and worldwide...for both the cool E-Book Reader [hardware] and almost 400,000 books in its massive library collection [software]. Initially, I noted that most bestsellers cost $11.99, a slight increase from the American price tag of $9.99. It has been explained that the extra fee was for Wireless 3G coverage (by Whispernet) so I can download mostly American-published books all across the Philippine Seas. The whole concept of the electronic book reader by Amazon never fails to amaze me, with a whole library of books neatly packaged in one lightweight [and I hear, very well-made] device and the availability of hundreds more at your easy [wireless] disposal...because it simply is amazing.

But just a day after placing an order on Amazon for Kindle 2, I read some discouraging news.

================================

MACMILLAN E-BOOKS
The Amazon Kindle Team says:
Initial post: Jan 31,2010
================================


Dear Customers:

Macmillan, one of the "big six" publishers, has clearly communicated to us that,
regardless of our viewpoint, they are committed to switching to an agency model and charging $12.99 to $14.99 for e-book versions of bestsellers and most hardcover releases.

We have expressed our strong disagreement and the seriousness of our disagreement by temporarily ceasing the sale of all Macmillan titles. We want you to know that ultimately, however, we will have to capitulate and accept Macmillan's terms because Macmillan has a monopoly over their own titles, and we will want to offer them to you even at prices we believe are needlessly high for e-books. Amazon customers will at that point decide for themselves whether they believe it's reasonable to pay $14.99 for a bestselling e-book. We don't believe that all of the major publishers will take the same route as Macmillan. And we know for sure that many independent presses and self-published authors will see this as an opportunity to provide attractively priced e-books as an alternative.

Kindle is a business for Amazon, and it is also a mission. We never expected it to be easy!

Thank you for being a customer.

===============================

On: Kindle Community Discussion

How it may affect International e-readers
February 1, 2010
===============================

Adorina L Reyes says:

Speaking on behalf of Philippine Kindle Owners/Readers: Oh no. I just placed an order for the Kindle 2 yesterday. My very expensive Kindle [$314.00 with Duties and S&H, approx. 15,000PHP] doesn't even reach the Philippine shores or my hands and today, I am faced with this news. Surely it's not a pleasant one considering I am always on a tight budget...and most of your so-called Freebies cost $2.00. Awww.

To Amazon: please reconsider increasing the price tags for us lowly
Filipinos who are English-literate but have a very low GDP. Honestly, I'm a home-based artist who just wanted to start reading again (simple as that but if you think about it, truly profound)...and your current average price of $11.99 for most books sound like a challenge to me already. Adding more sounds a lot more intimidating.

All because I thought the introduction of the Apple iPad last week gave me the option to choose you as my ideal E-reader. Shucks!

-------------------------------------------------------------
I wrote my comment half as a real concern and half as a knee-jerk reaction to this situation I find myself in. As mentioned, my excitement for the product and for the whole idea of reading again has been established, but the price tag increase in many featured bestsellers dampens it a little. Having written these, maybe I should start thinking of the first e-book bestseller I should purchase right off the bat...and think about it well. Any suggestions?

-------------------------------------------------------------
The Arrival:
February 4, 2010
Thursday
Sanville, QC

Four days after placing an order, I received my Kindle 2 through the mail. I was tired coming home from a long day of museum-visiting and window shopping but still very excited with the news that my Kindle came in one day early. Upon opening the very new looking package (meaning it showed no visible signs of normal wear and tear), I was immediately able to use it without doing the 1-2 step initial charging instructions that it came in with [upon powering the device on]. The first part of the very cool opening was being greeted by the Welcome Adorina note signed by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos himself dated at the exact same date I received it. Reading it felt quite oh-so personal. It really was scheduled to arrive one day earlier than announced.

But since daddy also invited the family to eat dinner out, I had no choice but to do the obligatory 3-hour charging. No problem. I immediately skimmed through previously downloaded free e-books upon reaching home the second time this day, Aesop’s Fables being one of them and I enjoyed it.

I must say the Kindle is very cool. The e-ink I have only read about until now was similar to the Etch-A Sketch plaything after all. It blinks when the Next Page button is pressed or any input button for that matter, and it was a slight “mis-feature” but other than that, if all you ever wanted to do was read for longer periods on a computer then the Kindle 2 is by all means a very nifty device. Clear, crisp text. Very sturdy body. Easy on the eyes. Simple navigation.

Now, all I have to do is READ, Read, read and actually finish reading a book.
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Images of E-Books/subscriptions I'd like to share that I am currently reading: including a screenshot of TIME's latest issue: