Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet

     Recently, I was given a Nook tablet.  There are many other reviews on the Internet comparing all three Barnes and Noble Nooks to or as well as the other available e-readers.  This review will be rather limited to my experience with my Nook.

     In light of the recent small furor over the idea that yes, apps really can track you, I will say that Nook apps are no exception.  The Scrabble app does not want to function unless your Nook is connected to a wifi spot.  If it is not, it will either present you with a nag screen to do so or refuse to load.  This is ridiculous.  One can play against the Nook-- the name of the Nook Player is always Norm-- instead of choosing to play a random opponent.  There is an option to play a random opponent.  But in order to see your stats, you have to sign into either FaceBook (FB) or some other site.  And FaceBook is a plain NO for me.  I have no interest in feeding my wallet info to a site with known privacy issues.  Not to mention the worms that crawl wildly along its' pages.  To wit, a friend's computer was recently brought to the brink of death directly after his daughter had connected to FB and then skated around it for a bit.  Friend only uses his computer for e-mail.  While his daughter was on FB, the computer had an episode of worms pouring out of FB (those are his words, perhaps it was a DDOS attack I don't really know).  At any rate, his computer seized up and the techie who worked on it decided to wipe his harddrive.  So the idea of connecting to FB to see one's stats in my opinion is lame.

     The graphics on the Scrabble game itself are soothing on the eyes, an important consideration for those like myself with ocular motor problems and photophobia.  There are three levels to choose from when playing against "Norm."  Although the Scrabble game on the Nook lacks a play yourself against yourself option, that did not bother me.

     Reading an E-Book on my Nook I found to be particularly nice.  I adjusted the print so there was more white space between the words.  One can also pick the font if one wishes to.  There was very little glare.  There is also a bookmark feature although that is difficult to consistently get on the touchscreen. 

     The Barnes and Noble online store has e-books available for purchase as well as a bunch of freebies of varying quality provided by a publish yourself e-book company.  The Nook can also recommend books for purchase based on one's past purchases (sort of like a smaller version of Google slanting its' marketing ads based on the user's profile and web search history).  The Nook also recommends freebies based on the same.  The search feature on the Nook for books yields a very long list and poor type.  I usually search the BN site online directly if I want to get another free e-book.  I have bought a few collections which are priced at around 5.99 u.s.d. or below.

     I have not modded my Nook since it is fairly new.  At some point in the future I may do so following the directions available freely on the web as well as in the Nook Manual.

     Of interest is that although the Nook came with a cleaning cloth, the BN employees have been instructed to remove those when selling a Nook.  Apparently the cleaning cloth left black marks on the Nook which were fairly impossible to remove.  The Nook screen can be cleaned off with the same kind of dry cloth used to clean the lenses of eyeglasses.  One should also use a sticky on one side kind of screen cover which will capture the oil from one's fingers.

     The price of the tablet I believe was around 199 u.s.d.  There is both a Nook color and Nook black and white Reader available for less.  The current promotion is to get a black and white Nook "free" with a twenty dollar a month e-subscription to the New York Times. I found that idea to be laughable.

I love my Nook and I hope that I will love it for many years to come. 

sapphoq reviews says: An e-reader may be the way to go for those of us who have eye movement and/or light sensitivity problems.  For everyone else, an e-reader may simply be a luxury or a shiny new toy or something that just doesn't make any sense.

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