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May 15, 2006
First Podcasting, Now Textcasting
AdWeek has an interesting story about how Slate, the online magazine founded by Microsoft, but now owned by the The Washington Post Company, has a plan to start making text of some of its articles available for reading on the iPod:
Users can receive the full text of its daily "Today's Papers" feature, which aggregates the days news. The downloaded story will appear in the iPod's display window. Slate will deliver the text attached to 15-minute silent audio file.
Of course, the effort has a sponsor: Lexus will have its brand logo appear where the album art usually appears. At least on motivation for the experience has to do with the slow pace of electronic book technology.
On that topic, I'd point you to an excellent pair of stories on Sony's latest electronic book reader by my colleague Burt Helm. He was first with the news that Sony had designed a new electronic book reader, the Sony Reader. Later he got his hands on a pre-production unit and wrote a review of the unit.
Since I sit next to him here in the office I got to play around with the reader for a few minutes and I generally liked what I saw: It was light, readable and something with which I'd feel comfortable plopping down on the coach, or reading on the subway. As much as I love the iPod, without a bigger screen, I'd personally rather avoid using it to read. But that's me.
iPod and iTunes
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