Usability Review of Kindle

I found this excellent review of the Kindle, Amazon's new Wireless reading device. No point going in talking about it as it is one of the best reviews I have seen in the recent past.

A small snippet here. Check out the full review at "Well".

There's a little styling going on here.

While the overall shape seems to be well proportioned and balanced (considering the plain volume alone), I don't get the reason of being of these angled cuts. Does it add comfort when holding the device or interacting with it ? Does it help to frame the text better ? Does it relate to some cultural meaning ? As from today, I'd like to get a clue. To me this is just a subjective decision, style for the sake of it, and it hangs in there as a hair on the soup. Same feeling about the progressively slanted keys of the keyboard. Style is good, but it needs to be backed up with purpose.


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7 comments:

Umesh said...

> Style is good, but it needs to be backed up with purpose.

Good one. Even i believe in any design element backed up with a purpose

But cant 'good looks' considered as a purpose?

Ramjee said...

hey umesh!!
good looks might be sufficient in cases.. where it does not have any more functionality.

but when we have to use something over and over, are good looks alone sufficient.!

Umesh said...

I'm not saying good looks alone is sufficient. How you achieve the balance is the key. All usable but looks ugly can also turn users away. I think good looks/visual design has also a functionality. The function is to make the users love it by just looking at it. Thats the first impression. Very key in flaunting them to others. Just imagine an apple imac which looks crap. Visual appeal is equally important as all the other design aspects.

I'm not saying kindle's design achieved the result. But i'm saying generally...

Ramjee said...

@Umesh,
I agree with you. Looks do matter. in this case of kindle, i liked the way it looked (though haven't looked at the real one).

I agree with you on the generalized statement.

technofun said...

@Ramjee
Was waiting for this one from you. ...This is very bad design, both looks and functionality... they could have done better job if they want to achieve cult status like Ipod... not that I am not happy ... [:D]

Sowmya Karmali said...

There's more to it than just ergonomics of handling, imho. What would the reading experience itself be like. Reading eBooks hasn't really taken off as fast, because people are still not comfortable reading long hours on the screen. (They'd rather watch TV :).)

Ramjee said...

@technofun,@sowmya
any book reader in the current date faces this problem of ergonomics and acceptability.
I would never buy one as it is very far cry from a traditional book reading exp.
However I am sure its step in the right direction, they already have an ink that does not need power.
The future as i see will have ultra thin pages (150 per book) which you can browse and read like a normal book.

what do you think.