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megimoo
03-28-2011, 03:13 AM
What if you could buy a tablet with a slightly smaller screen than the iPad for half the price or even less? Hackers have been turning e-book readers into tablets for cheap Internet on the go.

In fact, San Francisco hacker Mitch Altman doesn't read e-books on his Kindle at all. He only uses its Web browser to access maps and restaurant listings when he's traveling.

The Amazon Kindle has 3G data connectivity so that readers can download e-books anywhere there is cell service. As many Kindle owners know, the device can connect to Google and Wikipedia to look up things mentioned in e-books, too. That connectivity is all the opportunity hackers need to turn an e-book reader into a tablet.

Cheap And Portable Internet

"This is something that is starting to get around in geek and hacker circles, and it's a relatively cheap way to have Internet anywhere you go," Altman says.

When Altman says it's cheap, he's referring to the fact that the 3G Kindle costs a mere $190 and there is no charge for the 3G Internet. Of course, there's a trade-off here: the Kindle doesn't have a touch screen, so you have to use scrolling buttons to navigate around the screen, which Altman has found cumbersome. But for $60 more, he could've gotten the Nook Color.
How To Root A Nook Color
Huskermania

College student Alex Kuklinski demonstrates how to hack a Nook Color to make it into a "full-blown Android tablet."

Source: YouTube
How To Root A Nook Color (Mac Version)..VIDEO

The Nook Color is one of Barnes & Noble's e-book readers. It sells for $250 and can access the Internet only via wi-fi. It runs a stripped-down version of the Android operating system.

Alex Kuklinski, a college student in Omaha, Neb., has a YouTube video showing people how to hack their Nook Color to make it into a "full-blown Android tablet."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUoHALWvPts&feature=player_embedded

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oykpN97KUdQ&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RoRMYpBFaBE&NR=1&feature=fvwp

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y1vgUltyHLQ&feature=related

Kuklinski posts videos almost every week on YouTube, where he goes by the name "Huskermania." He's quite fond of the Nook Color and its high-end touch screen. "It's a really high quality device for the price."

He says the procedure for converting the Nook Color into an Android tablet is relatively simple. It takes about a half-hour, and the only cost beyond the Nook itself is the purchase of a micro-SD card, which can run about $15. Otherwise, it involves downloading a piece of free software that includes the Android operating system.

http://www.npr.org/2011/03/27/134897271/cheaper-than-a-tablet-rooting-your-e-reader

fettpett
03-28-2011, 04:41 AM
this should be in tech, but w/e

The Nook is much better option to turn into a tablet than the Kindle due to the touchscreen on the Nook. The Kindle's browser is really slow and outdated but if all you're doing is looking up directions and text, it's not bad.

while jailbreaking is legal, it's also against the TOS and can void the warranty on the device. Amazon's CS is freaking awesome. I had my first Kindle for 2 weeks, knelt on it and broke the damn screen...they sent me a new one the next day with virtually no questions asked

Odysseus
03-28-2011, 09:30 AM
this should be in tech, but w/e

The Nook is much better option to turn into a tablet than the Kindle due to the touchscreen on the Nook. The Kindle's browser is really slow and outdated but if all you're doing is looking up directions and text, it's not bad.

while jailbreaking is legal, it's also against the TOS and can void the warranty on the device. Amazon's CS is freaking awesome. I had my first Kindle for 2 weeks, knelt on it and broke the damn screen...they sent me a new one the next day with virtually no questions asked

Same here. About a month after I got my Kindle, it got a chip in the screen. Amazon had a replacement to me within 48 hrs. The Nook is an improvement on the Kindle in many ways (the color and touch screen functions), but you can read the Kindle in direct sunlight and the cost is much lower, and I have nothing bad to say about Amazon's CS.

fettpett
03-28-2011, 09:53 AM
Same here. About a month after I got my Kindle, it got a chip in the screen. Amazon had a replacement to me within 48 hrs. The Nook is an improvement on the Kindle in many ways (the color and touch screen functions), but you can read the Kindle in direct sunlight and the cost is much lower, and I have nothing bad to say about Amazon's CS.

in some ways...if you want a purely dedicated e-reader, Kindle 3 is the way to go atm. I would like the interface on the kindle to be a little easier to navigate and the search feature could use some upgrade, but for pure reading, Kindle is hands down the best.

Gingersnap
03-28-2011, 10:08 AM
Sounds deliciously "technical". :D

fettpett
03-28-2011, 10:09 AM
Sounds deliciously "technical". :D

right up your alley, eh, oh redheaded one?;):D

Odysseus
03-28-2011, 10:11 AM
in some ways...if you want a purely dedicated e-reader, Kindle 3 is the way to go atm. I would like the interface on the kindle to be a little easier to navigate and the search feature could use some upgrade, but for pure reading, Kindle is hands down the best.

Absolutely. And between Amazon's selection and the stuff that you can download for free at Project Gutenberg, it's the best way to go for reading e-books. I think that the Nook has the advantage for reading periodicals and PDF files, but that's the extent of it.

The hacking of the Nooks will eventually drive down the cost of tablet PCs. I'm waiting for someone to build a slightly more robust tablet that has the capabilities of a laptop. I'd love to be able to do Photoshop on a tablet.

fettpett
03-28-2011, 10:20 AM
Absolutely. And between Amazon's selection and the stuff that you can download for free at Project Gutenberg, it's the best way to go for reading e-books. I think that the Nook has the advantage for reading periodicals and PDF files, but that's the extent of it.

The hacking of the Nooks will eventually drive down the cost of tablet PCs. I'm waiting for someone to build a slightly more robust tablet that has the capabilities of a laptop. I'd love to be able to do Photoshop on a tablet.

yeah, Like I said in the other thread, I would love a dual e-reader/tablet hybred like the we got talking about there...

They upgrade the touchscreen tech to be much more durable so a stylist doesn't go through the screen and kneeling on it doesn't break it (*ha) I'd be one happy camper

Odysseus
03-28-2011, 03:59 PM
yeah, Like I said in the other thread, I would love a dual e-reader/tablet hybred like the we got talking about there...

They upgrade the touchscreen tech to be much more durable so a stylist doesn't go through the screen and kneeling on it doesn't break it (*ha) I'd be one happy camper

Well, if you kneel on a laptop, or even a flatscreen monitor, you will break it. :D

I don't care so much for touchscreens. I've had WACOM tablets for years and they provide far more sensitivity than most touch screens and because you're using a stylus, you can be far more precise. Now, give me a tablet PC with a stylus and a WACOM-type area to interface, and I'll be an extremely happy camper.

megimoo
03-28-2011, 07:25 PM
Well, if you kneel on a laptop, or even a flatscreen monitor, you will break it. :D

I don't care so much for touchscreens. I've had WACOM tablets for years and they provide far more sensitivity than most touch screens and because you're using a stylus, you can be far more precise. Now, give me a tablet PC with a stylus and a WACOM-type area to interface, and I'll be an extremely happy camper.So your desire is something between the capabilities of a laptop and a tablet ?BTW to you what are the weaknesses,as you see them, of the laptop over a tablet ?

Odysseus
03-28-2011, 11:35 PM
So your desire is something between the capabilities of a laptop and a tablet ?BTW to you what are the weaknesses,as you see them, of the laptop over a tablet ?

Laptops have greater processor speed and storage space, and more RAM. They can accommodate more robust software packages (Photoshop and Illustrator are RAM hogs). The weaknesses are portability and battery life.

megimoo
03-29-2011, 12:23 AM
Laptops have greater processor speed and storage space, and more RAM. They can accommodate more robust software packages (Photoshop and Illustrator are RAM hogs). The weaknesses are portability and battery life.

" Portability and Battery Life" ?Laptops are as portable as tablets are and battery life will improve over time .Most of these things will run from the power supplied by built in solar panels that work from ambient light available in offices today.

Ram is only used in processing as in running a program.They store the data temporarily as a working set.Real data Storage is either a hard drive or flash memory. The processors used in the tablets are actually quite robust and capable of processing digital photos or highly detailed graphic maps .

My thesis is that tablets of various types will all demand greater capabilities,storage and processing power so as to eventually become full tablet computers. The same processing power of a laptop but with a single sided display and data entry by both stylus and keyboard .

The trend is to prop the tablets up in some kind of a case to optimize the viewing angle, supplies charging, an external qwerty keyboard and mouse to emulate current laptops.Then as need arises to take the tablet to the customer and demonstrate the work accomplished .

It turns out to be impractical when compared to a high end laptop that can accomplish the same thing today ....Tablets are a step between an ebook reader and a laptop,a technological tour de force .

Odysseus
03-29-2011, 10:30 AM
" Portability and Battery Life" ?Laptops are as portable as tablets are and battery life will improve over time .Most of these things will run from the power supplied by built in solar panels that work from ambient light available in offices today.

It depends on the laptop. My personal one is a 17", and the army issues 15" laptops, both of which are much heavier than a tablet. I agree with you on the battery life, although I'm not as optimistic about the effectiveness of solar panels. You'd need a pretty big panel to power a tablet, which would tend to undercut the portability.


Ram is only used in processing as in running a program.They store the data temporarily as a working set.Real data Storage is either a hard drive or flash memory. The processors used in the tablets are actually quite robust and capable of processing digital photos or highly detailed graphic maps .
My first computer was a 386 that I tricked out for windows 3.1, so I've got a pretty good understanding of the difference between RAM and ROM (as we used to call it). Eventually, I suspect that someone will realize that a terrabyte flash drive can be used for RAM and storage, at which point you will eliminate any seek time. The processors are good for tablet functions, but for me, the acid test is doing Photoshop for print resolution (300 DPI), which means processing files that can get over 100MB. Processing video, where files sizes can exceed a GB is also a considerating. I can do that on my laptop, but a tablet just doesn't have the processing power for that kind of work, at least not yet.


My thesis is that tablets of various types will all demand greater capabilities,storage and processing power so as to eventually become full tablet computers. The same processing power of a laptop but with a single sided display and data entry by both stylus and keyboard .
What we're seeing is a convergence of platforms, not just in terms of performance, but also in terms of connectivity and compatibility. When MACs run Windows on Intel processors, there's really not much difference between the systems, and I don't know of any major software package that isn't written for both. Tablets run many of the same applications as phones and laptops, and the convergence there is happening even more rapidly.


The trend is to prop the tablets up in some kind of a case to optimize the viewing angle, supplies charging, an external qwerty keyboard and mouse to emulate current laptops.Then as need arises to take the tablet to the customer and demonstrate the work accomplished .

It turns out to be impractical when compared to a high end laptop that can accomplish the same thing today ....Tablets are a step between an ebook reader and a laptop,a technological tour de force .

Agreed. Eventually, the only difference between a tablet, a laptop and a smart phone will be the size of the screen and the interface.

fettpett
03-29-2011, 11:10 AM
I still see the tablet being a niche market for several years. people are buying it because it's a fad more than anything. it has it's uses but it's generally a large cellphone without the ability to call people (except through skype). Once they are one the level of current laptops in the form of processing power then I can see them catching on, particularly if they have a dedicated keyboard similar to that of a Kindle that doesn't take up a ton of space. I have hear the complaint that it's incredibly difficult to do any kind of typing on a tablet due to this lack, with the lack of USB connectors on the first Ipad it hampered it's usability as well

Zafod
03-29-2011, 11:46 AM
I still see the tablet being a niche market for several years. people are buying it because it's a fad more than anything. it has it's uses but it's generally a large cellphone without the ability to call people (except through skype). Once they are one the level of current laptops in the form of processing power then I can see them catching on, particularly if they have a dedicated keyboard similar to that of a Kindle that doesn't take up a ton of space. I have hear the complaint that it's incredibly difficult to do any kind of typing on a tablet due to this lack, with the lack of USB connectors on the first Ipad it hampered it's usability as well

like PDA's

fettpett
03-29-2011, 11:49 AM
like PDA's

yeah, but at lest a PDA isn't all that big so it doesn't take up a lot of space like a tablet does (or as much, not that a tablet is HUGE) and I can see the use of a PDA...