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Hire Me! Hire me for your writing assignment or event. I'm reasonable and reliable. Also looking for additional writing gigs. Email me at rclimpert003@yahoo.com

Based in Atlanta, GA - Rick Limpert is an award-winning writer, a best-selling author, and a featured sports travel writer.

Named the No. 1 Sports Technology writer in the U.S. on Oct 1, 2014.

Sunday
Sep272009

Great Piece on Opening Kindle to Developers and more...

Brad Stone of The New York Times has a great article today on opening up the Kindle to developers.  This has been talked about for a while, but there is nothing concrete on whether or not this will happen. 

Here's Brad's article: http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/09/25/will-amazon-open-the-kindle-to-developers/

Brad does a great job describing what could happen if Amazon would allow developers to create applications for their e-book reader.  There could be games, social networking possibilities, and educational programs including everything from flash cards to reading comprehension exercises for kids.

Well, all that appears to be on the backburner at this time.  Kindle loyalists are still pining for folders to organize their content, or simply the ability to read other formats on their Kindle.  (See the comments to Brad's column).

Brad is also on Len Edgerly's Kindle Chronicles Podcast this week, where he gives more details on what he covers in his current column.

Amazon is always secretive about what is ahead for the Kindle, and comparisons with Apple keep popping up.  I don't think this is all bad.  Apple's cult following has helped get media exposure and fans hang on every rumor site trying to catch a glimpse of what is coming soom from Cupertino.  If Amazon sticks to their plan, the Kindle will continue to be the leader in e-book readers for years to come.

Saturday
Sep262009

A Fax Machine from 1938

Next time you complain about your newspaper delivery person running late, or moan about how your Sunday newspaper looks on your Kindle, I want to call your attention to a machine from 1938 that was supposed to deliver your newspaper by radio frequency and have it printed on a box-like device sitting on a table.

Now we make think of this as the original fax machine, but this device developed by The St. Louis Post Dispatch promised customers a new way of receiving their daily news.

It turned out the device was way too slow.  Slow as in your newspaper started to come through in the morning and it didn't finish coming through the machine until 2 in the afternoon.  The print was too small, and the 4 column layout was clumsy.

The receiver was manufacuered by RCA, and back it 1938 it went for the hefty sum of $260.  An antenna picked up the radio waves and put pressure on the metal bar beneath where the paper was fed.  The black and white print was picked up by an "electric eye" and the carbon fed paper received the waves and printed on the moving paper.  The receiver printed photographs as well as text.

Quite a feat for 1938.  Newspapers survived this scare in 1938, how will they fare over 70 years later?

Friday
Sep252009

One of Georgia's Most Famous Residents Survives Flood

No, I'm not talking about Jimmy Carter, or "The Mouth of The South". Ted Turner, or not even baseball star Chipper Jones.  They were not in danger.

The State of Georgia held its collective breath earlier this week to find out the condition of General Beauregard Lee.  Lee is not a Civil War hero or a former POW.  Beauregard Lee is possibly the most famous groundhog in the world.  Strong rain and rampant flooding hit Lilburn, Georgia, the home of General Lee.  Word has now come out that General Lee and all the other animals housed at The Yellow River Game Ranch in Lilburn made it through the rain and floods fine.

There is some clean up and reorganizing to do at the ranch but General Lee will be ready to work his one day a year on February 2, like he does every year.  The  Yellow Game Ranch is expected to be open soon so go and see General Lee and all his friends.  And here's hoping General Lee will see an early spring come next February 2. 

Check out the ranch at: http://www.yellowrivergameranch.com/

 

Friday
Sep252009

Six Flags to Open Most of Park: No Flood Discounts

Six Flags over Georgia has decided to open this weekend, the last in September for business.  Most of the park will be open, I'm told, since there is no remaining standing water and clean up has gone better than expected.

Six Flags may have dropped the ball by offering no discounts to flood victims, or the general public as of yet.  They are offering military discounts this weekend to members of the armed forces and their guests.

With the pictures that circulated throughout the week of a flooded Six Flags, and all the jokes about "a new water park", the right thing to do would've been to offer buy one get one free tickets.  Not only would this have generated great publicity and sympathy for the area hit hard by floods, it would've been a great lead in to the October Halloween activities.

Six Flags should do the right thing.

Thursday
Sep242009

Follett and CafeScribe offer a new way to learn 

For over 135 years, Follett Corp. has provided quality textbook and learning materials to students of all ages across the world.  Staying on the cutting edge, Follett now introduces CafeScribe, an innovative etextbook program that allows users to not only read the book, but gives them the ability to make notes in the software and share them with social networking tools.
 
CafeScribe can be run on either the PC or MAC platform, on netbooks and desktops, giving flexibility to students and peace of mind that CafeScribe will run on their system.  Your CafeScribe etextbooks can be purchased at Follett owned bookstores or on CafeScribe.com.  Everything about your etextbook download will be identical to the print textbook, including page numbers and graphs.  CafeScribe is also slowly rolling out ebooks that will include works of fiction, classics,and lab manuals that may be required reading for courses; and down the road, books for leisure reading will also be offered.
 
Many major colleges and universities are offering and promoting Follett's innovative program.  CafeScribe is getting traction at such institutions as Brigham Young, Cal-Berkeley, George Washington, Georgetown, and The University of Georgia.  Disciplines in the science and business fields are proving to be popular in the use of CafeScribe.
 
MyScribe is the proprietary software that is your reader.  Users are allowed to read their books on three different computers, and a text-to-speech option is available for all etextbooks.
 
For added convenience, books can be used with a portable USB device by downloading MyScribe Portable.  Students can print up to 30% of their books on a printer, this may cause some concern, but you can print the 30% you need, and take it with you where you may or may not have computer access.
 
Follett Corp. appears to be following the lead of such companies like Amazon and Sony who are major players in the ebook revolution.  CafeScribe may do what the Kindle is doing for Amazon, but it is taking it a step further by seeing through social networking, a tool already popular with students,  encourages students to enjoy sharing and learning from others.  The affordability and ease of use along with the internet being the perfect place for this, the innovative approach of Follett needs to be complimented and taken advantage of.