Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Joyce in my pocket

Regular readers of this blog might recall the excitement I expressed at acquiring my Kindle, around six months ago. The excitement hasn't abated. Reading articles, magazine issues (e.g. Slate), newspapers, dissertation chapters and draft essays*, occasionally whole books on my Kindle has become part of my routine. Saves paper (especially those drafts!), carries with me most's the portable library its advocates claim.

Today a new iPhone application is being released - Kindle for iPhone (and iTouch). This means merely that through my iPhone I can read all the books that are stored for me by Amazon through my Kindle account. Not ideal for, let's say, a weekend-long read of Ulysses. Nor would I ever, at home, pick up my iPhone to read these books when I can use my Kindle. But for the train, for waiting in long lines, for the days when I meant to bring my Kindle but have forgetten it, having this phone access to the library will be fabulous for me. And it would give me pleasure to ponder a page of Joyce in the supermarket. The phone these days is always in the pocket.

Here's a passage from today's NYT story:

Starting Wednesday, owners of these Apple devices can download a free application, Kindle for iPhone and iPod Touch, from Apple’s App Store. The software will give them full access to the 240,000 e-books for sale on, which include a majority of best sellers.

* Oh yes, as you might know, the Kindle set-up permits one to email oneself any text in familiar formats (e.g. Word, PDF, html). So if a colleague sends me the draft of a 30-page paper for a quick read and response, I can email it to myself at my @kindle account and within minutes it will be on the Kindle, readable in book-like page view.