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The hazards of modern technology
device
jducoeur
Sometime before Christmas, my Kindle decided to pack it in. It was the second Kindle I'd had (of the classic horrible-keyboard variety), and it died exactly the same way the previous one had: one moment, the screen simply "smeared", and nothing would fix it. (From here on out, I'm concluding that putting it in a case would be a good idea.)

Kate promised me a new one for my birthday, and today gave it to me as a sort of "pre-birthday" present, so that I'd have something to read while I walk. (Yes, I read while I walk. Always have done, since I was a small child. Reasonably safe, provided you train yourself properly to keep your peripheral vision alert, your ears open, and put the damned thing aside whenever you cross the street.) It's the fancy new "Paperwhite" model, which includes a backlight -- useful since walking home from Davis in the evening, along the Somerville bike path, is *prime* reading time.

I needed a few things from CVS and Shaw's today, so I decided to try it out. I immediately realized that I had a problem: it is freaking cold today. Okay, technically it is awfully windy. Regardless, the wind chill was something like ten degrees, so gloves were a necessity.

Note "fancy new model" -- with a touchscreen instead of the traditional buttons to change page. On the new Kindle models, you touch the right-hand side of the screen to go forward. Which is great, except that my old-fashioned gloves don't work on a touchscreen worth a damn. (I have reason to believe that there are touchscreen-compatible gloves in my future, but I only get one pre-birthday present.)

What to do? The gloves were a strict necessity, but turning the page was impossible with them. Only exposed skin will work on a touchscreen, and I was tightly bundled up. And then it dawned on me.

And so it was that anybody passing by today on Cedar Street was treated to the sight of me walking along, reading -- and periodically whapping the Kindle against my nose, like a monk out of Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Undoubtedly looked ridiculous, but it works perfectly well until I have a better solution...

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Thank you for the delightful image!

As a temporary workaround, a capacitative stylus should work, and I would expect you can pick up one of those for ~$2 at Micro Center, or three for a dollar plus $9.99 shipping and handling on the interwebs.

And I just realized I forgot to take mine out of the pocket of the jeans I put in the wash last night. Well, it’ll probably be OK, but if not, good thing I ordered three for a dollar plus $9.99 shipping and handling on the interwebs.

Styli are indeed cheap and easy to get, as are capacitive gloves -- pretty sure there are some for ~$10 at Target. There are also these conductive pads you can add to any pair of gloves, *and* they're on sale.

The $3 ones I bought at CVS work just fine, too.

Hahaha! I came to the nose conclusion at "then it dawned on me," and your image of Monty Python only improved it. Awesome!

We bought a pair of gloves for my little sister that specifically designed to allow you to use a touchscreen device while wearing them. She got them as an early Christmas present, and she was delighted and texted us the first time she used them to let us know.

I didn't realize the Paperwhite had a capacitive touch screen. I have the Kindle Touch (the model that the Paperwhite replaced), and it uses a pressure sensitive touch screen that works with any old gloves.

Yep. That and the backlight seem to be the important changes...

And the increased contrast (whiter whites!) and increased ppi make it a very nice improvement.

And if books are our windows into imaginary worlds, think of this as leaving nose-prints on the window. :)

This wins the Internet for today (for me: I may not have looked widely enough).

Hee! I was lucky enough to be gifted the appropriate gloves for christmas. I hgave Amanda a Paperwhite for her birthday when they first came out last fall, partly so she could do something distracting one handed while nursing and holding the newborn. She didn't think she'd like an eReader, but loves it now.

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I doubt you have data to back this up.

But when it really comes down to it, I don't care. Thanks.

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I was about to suggest the same thing - get conductive thread and add a little "patch" to the front of one of the fingers... So your finger effectively is (electrically) poking out of the glove. Other people have done this quite effectively.

I do that all the time with my iPhone, and yes people make fun of me for it. :)

Depending on your gloves, you could attach a small loop of copper wire to a fingertip. Which is what I'd probably try.

Pie caudex domine
Dona eis requiem

Sounds like the perfect thing to engrave on a faux wood case for the new Kindle. X^D

I very much appreciate the hysterical giggling this gave me, although now I'm wondering what a "capacitative" touch screen is. I'm guessing this is some kind of response to heat?

Actually, I'm also appreciating hearing that there are other people in the world who read and walk. I have also done it since I was a child, but my mother attempted to rid me of the tendency by shouting at me.

although now I'm wondering what a "capacitative" touch screen is. I'm guessing this is some kind of response to heat?

Electricity, actually. IIRC, it makes use of the fact that skin is somewhat conductive to detect where your fingers are.

Actually, I'm also appreciating hearing that there are other people in the world who read and walk. I have also done it since I was a child, but my mother attempted to rid me of the tendency by shouting at me.

Typical. But yes, I've been doing so since the days when I was walking to elementary school. It's fine, so long as you understand what you need to do to be safe...

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