Monday, May 19, 2008

My Travels with the iPhone and the Kindle Combination

Last Friday I had a meeting with Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC) Video Arts and Technology Program students, faculty and administrators. BMCC has an NSF project grant titled "Creating Career Pathways for Women and Minorities in Digital Video Technology" – an exciting project with lots of excellent results!.

As usual, I drove early in the morning to New Haven, CT and took the train from New Haven to Grand Central Station . In the past I've lugged a notebook computer with me for work on the train and have brought lots of "hard copy" with me including reports to review, periodicals to read, etc. This trip I decided to ditch the notebook and piles of heavy paper and travel light - carrying just the iPhone and the Kindle.

Prior to leaving I converted a number of documents I needed to review to Amazon Kindle (.azw) format. Amazon provides a free conversion service for registered Kindle users for Microsoft Word (.doc), Web page (.html and .htm) and Adobe Acrobat PDF (.pdf) file formats using a unique email address. Amazon replies by email with a link to each of the the converted azw files and the user pulls the files off and transfers them to their Kindle using a USB cable. Here's a diagram outlining the free conversion service procedure:

I had a relaxing two hour train ride from New Haven to Grand Central, getting lots of work related reading done using the Kindle. I was especially happy to have a 208 (!) page document I needed to read converted and on the Kindle. Not only did I save lugging 208 pages of paper - I probably saved a small tree!

My meeting in New York went great - the group I met with had several relevant documents that I asked them to email me as attachments so I could read on the train ride back. They ended up sending me the 4 large Word documents as attachments that I received on my iPhone. I then forwarded the documents to a pay conversion service Amazon provides that delivered converted azw files wirelessly to the Kindle for 10 cents each. Here's a diagram outlining the paid conversion service procedure:
[FYI: Don't think you can spam my Kindle now that you know my free and not-free Kindle conversion email addresses - I have to authorize all conversion receiving email addresses!]

Overall an excellent experience - it was neat to move files around from one device to another while traveling 50-60 miles per hour on the train and then read them on a high resolution E Ink Kindle screen. I ended up getting just as much work done without the laptop with the added bonus of no eye strain.


Anonymous said...

I do something similar involving my Treo, a Sony Ereader, and an SD Card

Gordon F Snyder Jr said...

Sounds great Joe - figuring you are pulling the files down on to an SD Card in the Treo and then moving the SD Card to the Sony Reader.
I do wish the iPhone had an SD Card slot!