Sunday, December 30, 2007

Kindle Easter Eggs

Although we're quickly approaching New Year's Day, thanks to

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Wait a minute. Do you own a Kindle? Good Lord. If you did, you've have tried the pseudo GPS "function" and realized it doesn't work -- it's an unimplemented feature, without support from Sprint.

Blows my mind that you don't own a Kindle.

Joe Wikert said...

Dear Anonymous, I thought I made my intentions behind launching Kindleville in my first post: http://kindleville.blogspot.com/2007/12/welcome-to-kindleville.html. I'm sorry to disappoint you by the fact that I don't (yet) own a Kindle but that still doesn't prevent me from being a fan, reporting news and providing opinions as both a publisher and reader.

That said, there are quite a few Kindle owners who *have* been using the pseudo-GPS feature that Ivor uncovered. Some have reported hit-and-miss success with it, but that's consistent with the signal availability others have complained about for simple book downloads. Nevertheless, is it really surprising that an unofficial feature like this is neither supported nor 100% reliable?

Paul M. said...

The triangulation technique the kindle uses for gps is documented in this guys post on his blog:

http://interface.puhala.com/2007/12/29/kindle-easter-eggs-in-action-screenshots/

Hell, he even includes a screenshot of his results, so it sure looks like it works fine to me. He said the services are spotty though.

Michael said...

Yes - The location-based service does in deed work for me (as stated in the above comment). It entirely depends upon the strength of the cell signal together with the speed of the response as it could timeout. But for the most part, Alt-1 does work for me when in the browser.

It's not surprising that this hidden feature is not advertised. The fact that the Kindle comes with a browser at all is correctly labeled as 'Experimental'. My best guess is that Amazon does not want to lead with any browser based services since there are no re-captured wireless costs for using the browser on the Sprint network. I'm curious to understand the agreement between Amazon & Sprint.

Anonymous said...

Bunk, bogus. I've met with other Kindle owners, we've tried all our units, in the Bay Area, in LA -- superior Sprint areas.

It doesn't work. It's an unimplemented feature.

I guess this is the "hype" by non-owners counterpoise to the bad review from non-owners.

And Joe, you say you disclosed your own non-ownership in your first post? There's a lot of promotion of this page off this site, and nowhere on the visible page is your non-ownership disclosed today.

Have you even ordered one? Seen one? What in heaven's name impels you to create such a misleading public impression?

Joe Wikert said...

Dear Anonymous, I'm glad you're back! You're so doggone right. I don't even know what a Kindle is. I thought this was supposed to be a blog about making firewood but obviously I'm wrong.

I'll do my best to spread the word that the GPS feature does not work. Can you help me out though and start by telling the folks who for some reason think it's actually working for them? I'm sure it's some sort of conspiracy but if we all remain calm we'll figure it out.

And again, no, I *don't* own a Kindle. If it makes you feel better though, tell yourself I do and that I too have been unable to get the GPS feature to work.

P.S. -- You might want to stop by my other blog to note that I don't actually own a publishing house either.

michael said...

Don't you just love web anonymity Joe? If people want to be contentious, it's a complete cop-out to not include name, or contact info...

I have not yet been to the bay area or L.A. with my Kindle. However it does work for me here in Arizona. See my screenshots over at my blog.

Anonymous: You mentioned that this story has been debunked in your first post. Where has this been debunked?

Joe Wikert said...

Hi Michael. Yes, anonymity is definitely a double-edged sword, although I'm hard-pressed to find a good use of it in the blogosphere. Our friend has unfortunately pushed me into enabling a blogger's best friend: the comment moderation feature. The downside is that future comments won't appear immediately, but I'll do my best to approve them when I have a couple of minutes to check my Gmail account.

Thanks for confirming that the feature does indeed work.