Not at CES

That last post turned out to be all about “Arrested Development,” so I guess this is the one that’s posting just for the sake of posting.

I made a post at SFist yesterday about all the rumors around a Google PC. The story itself is kind of lame — even the rumor sites were saying that it was unlikely, and by the time I got home to write the post, the rumor had already been officially denied.

But what was more interesting to me was the whole “meta-story,” how the thing got so wide-spread so quickly, even though there was really nothing to it. As far as tech rumors go, it was actually kind of approaching compelling. It was a wacky idea (not only a line of cheap PCs, but they’d be writing their own operating system!) that had a little bit of validity because it was printed in the LA Times. And it had the whole “black fiber” angle that I still don’t quite understand but puts an X-Files spin on the whole thing. It’s just amazing to me what a phenomenon the company’s become; Google is building a public perception kind of like NASA’s during the space race. Or seeing as how it’s trading at over $400 a share these days, maybe it’s more like the Tyrell Corporation or SKYNet or Arvin Sloane’s OmniFam.

So I keep hearing stuff coming out of CES, but none of it’s really sticking as particularly interesting. I’m curious to see how Windows Vista looks; I keep seeing articles mentioning that MS is demoing it at the show, but nothing with real details. This eBook reader mentioned on Gizmodo looks pretty cool, and I’ve always liked the idea but don’t think I’d want to be an early adopter of the technology unless it gets a lot cheaper; both for the device itself and the content. Especially since the thing doesn’t have a backlight; what’s the point of an electronic book that you can’t read in bed?

Next week I’m going to be at the MacWorld Expo for at least one day. Maybe that’ll get me all geared up to be Geek Republican again, spending way too much money on disposable electronics and consumerism. At the moment, I’m worried that something’s wrong with me — I’ve got gift certificates for the Best Buy but when I went to the store Tuesday there was nothing I wanted!

3 thoughts on “Not at CES”

  1. Could you just what this eBook reader is? How is it not like a Palm Pilot? Is it just a portable device you can read printed material on? Because the last I looked, books were pretty portable…

  2. Yeah, it’s a portable device you can download printed material to. The screen size and resolution are much, much better than a Palm Pilot or even a tablet PC. I haven’t seen one in real life, but supposedly the text is indistinguishable from print. Reading something longer than a page or two on a palm pilot is a drag, and it’s not much better on a PC.

    The advantage over books is that you can have one unit hold dozens to thousands books, since text files are small. It takes memory cards; since it’s Sony I imagine it uses the memory stick. You can also download stuff to it, like RSS feeds or more eBooks.

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