Hello there everyone, I something to announce today. By now, most of you should know that images now load correctly in the blog's feed, but some places, like Google Reader, at least for me, do not load the images. Well, I checked with Amazon's publishing for blogs site and found that the images load there, as they do in Calibre, but I have to use something other than the domain name for Calibre. I submitted my blog for inclusion in the Kindle store.
I would like to give a warm welcome to Kindle subscribers, if there are any to be had in the coming days or weeks. I strongly encourage Kindle users, and other visitors, to come over here and post your comments on any posts you guys read. I do moderate comments, so there are things that I will not accept, but I have approved most comments, so I am not very strict.
Why did you submit your blog for inclusion in the Kindle store? As you guys may remember from my review of the Apple TV, I said that people usually prefer ease-of-use over complicated tinkering, even among Windows PC users. Yes, you can subscribe to this blog via ATOM feeds in places like Google Reader and Instapaper, the latter of which can turn posts into ebooks. Instapaper can supposedly turn the whole feed into an ebook too, though I have not really been able to test it. Calibre offers the same functionality, but all of former require either an app or a computer (I have not really found a way to add feeds to Google Reader via Safari (iOS)). Calibre also requires a computer, which must be on 24/7, like a server, unless you want to manually retrieve updates from Calibre. Also, as many would have noticed in my posts, there have been times where the server hosting this blog went down, even over extended lengths of time. As I know most people who follow blogs like to share posts they find, my first step, after getting this domain name, was to allow people to download ebook archives, with the hope that everyone respects my wishes and does not make profit on them. However, not everyone has apps that support the EPUB format, and devices like the Kindle, as far as I know, but feel free to correct me in the comments, do not have a way to unarchive zip files and view the HTML source directly in a browser, like desktops and laptops can. Such things can be done, if the EPUB is DRM-free. Because of those facts, as well as guesses, I submitted my blog to Amazon, in order to allow people to read posts offline without any extra apps, though iOS and Android users, with exception of Kindle Fire users, would need extra apps to subscribe to the blog via Amazon or view the ebook archives.
Are there any downsides to subscribing via Kindle? Unfortunately, I do not use the Kindle, so I cannot say for sure, but things did seem acceptable in the preview that Amazon showed me. All I have to go on is guesses and experiences from producing Kindle-friendly ebooks. First, I have not had any real success with formatting for Kindle. The content you see is stylized via CSS level 2.1 and appears as it should in the EPUB format. However, no ebooks I have produced for Kindle ever kept the styles, except for maybe text indentations and text size, which I specify using relative measurements like em. Also, as Amazon is generating the ebooks through their blog service, I cannot guarantee that they will be DRM-free. Except for those, I cannot really think of anything worth mentioning. There is the fact that you can read and follow my blog through normal ways for free, while you need to pay a fee for a Kindle subscription, but I think Amazon priced it appropriately low. Besides, Instapaper themselves says that unless you are comfortable plugging in the Kindle to a computer for updates, there may be fees associated with wireless transfers, which is probably why you cannot have that capability without paying a monthly fee to somebody anyway.
Though some of you may view this a hypocritical move, as I have always provided blog content for free, before ever getting my domain name and deleting the old brycec.dyndns.org address, I am not doing this for the money or fame. I just want it to be easier for people to read their favorite posts and/or follow me, if they want.
Do you think this is a good idea? Did I get anything wrong about the capability of eReaders like the Kindle, which I acknowledge I may be wrong about anyway? Feel free to comment.
Use an app on your phone (e.g. Scan for Android) to capture the image above. If successful, you should be taken to the web version of this article.