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Question of the Week - Technology Gadgets

My birthday is next week (wooo hoooo! I LOVE birthdays, especially my own!), and I've been asking anyone who was considering getting me a present to get me one specific thing: gift certificates to Barnes and Noble. I'm sure you all have realized how much I love books, but I'm not going to use the gift certicates for books.

What then would I do with those gift certificates? Why, I'm hoping to get enough to purchase the gadget I've been coveting... a type of technology device that I've been badly wanting for over a year... the specific item that I've researched and compared to other types... The Nook!

When Amazon first came out with its eReader, the Kindle, I thought how fantastic it would be to have one some day. Over the years, I have kicked around the idea of purchase the Kindle, especially the Kindle 2. A coworker brought his wife's in last winter so I could see it and play with it and determine if it really was as awesome as I thought it would be.

It totally is.

It would be so much easier to bring more than one book with me on trips out of town or even to the doctor's office, easier to get books in time for book clubs, easier to read while nursing, and easier to use a booklight for nighttime reading, since it would attach to one spot and I wouldn't have to juggle pages and the light and whatever else. Yes, I would miss the feel of books in my hands and the book on my shelf to look at and the book to lend to other people. But honestly, we have completely run out of room on our shelves for new books, and I'm really liking the idea of reading the eInk that is standard on eReaders, with a ton of books right there at my finger tips!

I haven't been able to afford the Kindle. And last winter a coworker told me about the iPad that was coming out. I decided to wait and see what the iPad would be like to see if I'd want that more than an eReader.

Would you know it, I absolutely LOVE the iPad. I want one SO bad! It's better than an eReader, because I could blog from the iPad. But it doesn't make sense for me to get an iPad that just has wifi--I might as well just use my laptop in the places I can get access to wifi. The reason to get an iPad for me is for the 3G network, as well as the ability to read books in a hand-held device. But it doesn't use eInk, and I stare at backlight computer screens too much as it is. I can blog on my laptop. And most importantly, there is simply no way I could afford an iPad that includes the 3G network. Just ain't happening.

So I started thinking about the Kindle again. After considering the cost of the iPad and because the prices of eReaders are going down, it suddenly doesn't seem crazy expensive to get a regular eReader. I was about to ask for gift certificates to Amazon.

Then my sister told me about the Nook. It's really just like the Kindle, except slightly different features. I think I would love either, but I'm hoping to get the Nook. The reasons I'm picking it over the Kindle are: the touch screen to navigate and type, the ability to lend eBooks to other Nook users (and my sister bought one already!), and the fact that there is a physical location to go to for more perks and customer service. Even though I'm extremely displeased with Barnes and Noble's book return policy (it's even worse than Borders's return policy!), I think their general customer service is good.

So there you have it. I'm coveting the Nook eReader. If I don't get enough gift certificates for my birthday, I'll try holding out until I can get more for Christmas. The kids and the house are taking up all our money, so I can't just go out and buy myself one, but I really would like a little something for myself for my birthday.

And this week's question of the week is:

What technology gadget are you coveting?

I still so badly want the iPad, but I know I'll be very happy with the Nook (or a Kindle). I also have realized that I would love one of those new-fangled cell phones that connect to that interweb thingie and have useful and fun do-dads called "apps" on them, especially one with an app that works with the Nook so I could read my current eBook from my phone if I'm out and about with the Nook. This is the first time I've considered getting a cell phone for anything besides calls, text messages and pictures, all because of my lust for an eReader--oh, and to update my tweets!

What about you? What new device do you want to run out and get, if only you could afford it? What have you bought recently that was everything you dreams technology should be and do? I'd love to hear what you want and why, cause I truly am an IT geek at heart (and at work)!


Geeks in Rome said…
great run-down of the pros and cons. I saw someone with a Kindle on the plane and I was enthralled. But I'm a borderline Luddite and usually don't covet anything more than a functioning fan and t.v.

However, I do have to say I fell in love with the iPod when I borrowed a friend's. Being in Italy I can't watch US shows (don't have cable). But with the iPod you can thru iTunes. I was addicted to Lost at the time so I got it so I could watch the latest episodes.

I am so thrilled I have it because I download tons of free podcasts that I listen to while putting the babes to bed. When i would nurse my daughter to sleep I'd listen to Rachel Maddow or 60 Minutes and suddenly feel in the loop again (early motherhood and being an ex-pat both alienate you from madre terra :)

Now I am hooked on ordering audio books with iTunes. I downloaded NurtureShock yesterday and was able to get thru more of the book by listening to it than if I had been reading it. DD is jetlagging and takes forever to go down so I got to midway chap 2!!! If I didn't have this to listen to I would be going NUTS waiting for her to fall asleep.
Cloud said…
I've been coveting an eReader, too, but am still on the fence as to which one. At this rate, I'll still be sitting on the fence when something that uses color eInk is available, and that is probably what I'll end up getting....
Katie said…
Hmm, now Geeks mentions it, I'd like an iPod.. but I honestly don't listen to music all that much. Everything else techy that I'm interested in (including listening to stuff, which as I say I don't really do much of) I can do on my lappy. Even ebooks - there's a free Kindle for PC app that I DL'd a couple months back. I really prefer paper books, though.

What piece of equipment do I covet, that I would buy if I had the bux? A spinning wheel. ;)
Anonymous said…
Definitely the iPad. DH has been trying to convince me that my next laptop should be a PC since work won't buy any Mac software but I just feel like not owning ANY Apple computer would be selling ALL of my soul to the dark side (I've already given them most of it since I'm a Microsoft consultant). :)

So if I DO end up getting a PC laptop, I might have to later buy an iPad just to assuage my Apple need.
paola said…
I'm not hi-tech in any way shape of form. Hubby bought me a Walkman for Christmas last year for running and that is the most sophisticated piece of technological gadgetry that I have(or would want). Except maybe a Netbook, which would help at work. Catch 22 though, as it depends on how much work they throw at me.
Anonymous said…
I know you said no to the iPad... But I live my iPad. It is more the just a big iPhone. I can do about 80-90 % of my work plus edu gave for the boys and books for me.
mom2boy said…
4G iPhone. I have the very first incarnation of the iPhone and while I looooooooove it, I am coveting the newest version. video phone sounds fun - I use skype on my laptop and think video on a phone would be handy.

I love my kindle because it is exactly what I wanted - a bunch of books in one tiny, easy to use device. It has some drawbacks. I'm not good at moving around within a book - could just be me but it seems more difficult than it should be. I think a touch screen would be a big improvement but that could be my iPhone dependancy talking.

Happy almost birthday and I hope you get your ereader!!
caramama said…
Geeks in Rome - You are making me seriously want to get a new iPod! I'm not able to update my super old one or I'll lose everything on it (a glitch with the older hardware/software). But actually the Nook stores mp3 files so I can listen to music while reading or listen to an audio book on it! I'm hoping to use those features a lot.

@Cloud - It would be nice to have color eInk. But at this point, I'm willing to go for the b/w. I just can't stay on the fence anymore!!!

@Katie - Well, the spinning well is absolutely a technilogical device! So is a pen, if you think about it. I think that would be an awesome device to have.

@La Folle Maman and Justin - No seriously, I am totally drooling over the iPad. It is almost exactly what I want. If only it used eInk for the ebooks and cost a few hundred dollars less.

@paola - Ha! A walkman not an iPod? Hey, whatever works for you!

@mom2boy - Oh, the Kindle. I'm so glad to hear it's just what you want. The Nook's touch screen is actually limited to the bottom of the device, not where you read but the place where the Kindle has the keyboard. So it could be easier, but there are limitations with the eInk technology. Thanks for the good wishes!
Jac said…
I have a Kindle and love LOVE it. Never thought I would because I'm such a tactile person and I adore the feeling and smell of books. But, its pretty awesome, when I have nothing to read around the house, to just download a new book that I've been wanting to read. My husband and I share a Kindle account so we download books on our home computer and then we can both access them on our respective Kindles, which is nice since we have similar tasts.

I've even figured out how to read the Kindle at the beach or in the bath tub (put it in a plastic ziploc bag). And whereas I used to think that it wouldn't be nice to curl up with a Kindle in bed, now I think about how nice and light it is - my arms never get tired trying to hold it up in bed :)

I also have an Ipod touch which is great because almost all of Vancouver has wireless internet access so I can check my email, blogs etc at most local coffee shops. And, there are some great toddler apps on there which are just perfect for trying to kill time if we're stuck waiting somewhere and DS is starting to come unglued.

I can't think of any technology item I want. My husband is what you would call an "early adopter". If a new thing comes out, he buys it (which makes gift giving REALLY difficult). He has an IPAD. I'm not sure why. He also has an Ipod Touch, a Kindle, two laptops, a blackberry, and two desktops. He's self-employed so they are "business expenses". Snort.
paola said…

I didn't need anything too sophisticated, but the sealer was the price. Anyway as long as the damn thing plays music.
hush said…
Another Luddite here. DH gave me an IPod a few years ago, and that has been neat but not exactly life-changing. I'm sure I'm missing some of the functionality.

The IPhone and all of the cool apps seem to make it the " It Gadget" around here, so I guess I would choose that.

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