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Friday, 22 February 2013


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I doubt she's deliberately being nice to you; rather, she sees really bad cases of hoarding on such a regular basis that yours seems like nothing!

I read this book on your recommendation and discovered that we (Yanks at least) are all hoarders, just some more than others. It was very interestingly disturbing. I have not been able to loan it or give it away when friends hear what it's about.
Like Carlin says, we gotta have our stuff and buying, storing or moving it is what keeps our economy buzzing right along.

Question: How does one pronounce Eolake? I tried several name pronunciation sites and none recognizes it.


I have a Paperwhite and an original generation "button" Kindle (it's OK, they don't fight).

The "paperwhite" bit is, um, a little misleading. What they mean is that if you have the lights on full-blast the screen is white; if you don't, it's much the same shade of grey as the original.

However, if you do have the lights on constantly, battery life is much diminished, despite what they say. You'll only get around a week, if you're a real reader. Also, there are annoying shadows along the bottom edge of the screen where the LCDs are located that are, well, annoying. So, whenever possible, you'll still use "papergrey" mode.

However, I do prefer the size and heft of the Paperwhite, the touch-screen is a big improvement, the navigation is MUCH better, and it's really great having the built-in light for when you need it: it's become my daily-use reader. And I love the bespoke leather case -- very classy.

But if was going on a long journey I'd take the original, as I know one charge is guaranteed to keep it going for many weeks. Magically, all my books will be in there, too!

You need both, basically. You know it makes sense, especially when compared to the hazardous stacks of books they replace.


It could be that it is bad (like my place), but not bad enough to make a good TV show ...

Sigh, the new paperwhite.
An insomniac I want one too. Can read without disturbing others. But alas I'm economically and ecologically frugal and suffering from the current epidemic "lakadadough". So for now I'll save my pennies for something else.


What no pictures?

Sorry, but I'll pass. I'll never buy the Paperwhite. If there's one thing I'm dogmatic about it's books. There's no substitute for reading a real, paper book. I never got to terms reading on fairly large computer monitors, and the Kindle is an even more awkward and detaching experience. Not to mention what happens to my "virtual library" if the computer (or the Kindle for that matter) breaks down and I hadn't done any backups.
I know someday someone will proclaim the death of books, but I'll just keep buying them. Maybe they'll resurrect, like vinyl LPs did.
(Now, what about reading photography books on a Kindle? Meh...)

I was lucky in that my daughter used my old Kindle and left it in her messy room and stepped on it, cracking the screen. The Paperwhite is quite nice, especially if you spend any time waiting in your car on dark evenings.

I'm the main stuff manager in our house. Seems like I need to work a good hour or two a day on stuff. We got rid of our huge pile of cd jewel cases a few years ago, but not the cd's. Books will be the last to go. I no longer save magazines. Spring cleaning always brings pleasure and discovery (that's where that went) but you don't want to go overboard.

Can you try them out? I tried various readers of friends and family. I found I preferred the Nook Touch. I'm still happy with it, months later.

It's a personal, ergo-eye-dynamics thing. Reviews and specs don't tell all.



I want a Paperwhite, too, but my Kindle Keyboard (not sure which generation it is) still functions perfectly well, and I just can't justify getting a new one. *sigh*



Hmm I see, it's Kindle. Naah, not letting Amazon lock me in thank you. My Kobo is probably not as good, but I'm FREE! (so far anyway)

A book on stuff surely is just more stuff? I've got plenty of my own and don't need any help in acquiring more.

I’m a dedicated Kindle fan. Love it. Keeping books is another way of attracting dust. Most books I read are “read once give away“. Only reference and photo books are really worth shelf space and I find these days I don’t go back much and reread them. Reference – Wikipedia and the internet have replaced the venerable Webster’s Dictionary (that big fat one) which I still keep out of nostalgia.

Kindle problems – only one – when the wife wants to read, too. I’ve downloaded books in a boat off the Croatian coast, too! The Whispernet option is very convenient.

Advantage over paper books – don’t have to fight the binding when I’m reading. I heartily dislike having to pry open a book to read it. Kindle gives me one page at a time in a print size I can adjust …

She's nice, hmzzzz probably a mildly disturbing case.....of gadgitis......no roaches munching away old Ansel Adams prints in your kitchen, so your fine.

Only a large amount of stuff that you can't get rid off and don't seem to be able to organize. She'll have your house sorted out in minutes and it will take you years to find all your stuff back...Einstein (I believe) once said:

Order is for idiots, genius can handle chaos.

and a professor of mine (Prof. Hans Bloemendal) greeted me with the sentence.....

Dig out a chair and have a seat.

Greetings, Ed.

"Not to mention what happens to my "virtual library" if the computer (or the Kindle for that matter) breaks down and I hadn't done any backups."

That's why I back up my computer and have two readers (actually Sony Readers, not Kindles). I find the readers more comfortable to hold than some books, and just as pleasant to read.

I prefer to actually OWN my books, not just to rent them. So I buy the paper versions and lend them or give them away as I choose. I do own two Nook devices, but I use the Color to play games and the HD+ for web browsing.

I've been using a Kindle Keyboard for a little over a year and I find it perfect for general reading purposes. It's not always so good for cookbooks and other instructional material. And I would never consider buying a ebook version of any book of photographs. I'm a hoarder of paper photo books.

My wife just bought a Kindle Fire HD 8.9 reader/tablet as a gift for me. I'm really enjoying it as well but it's heavy and the touch screen is sometimes a hinderance when all you want to do is read a book. I like it better for light web browsing than my laptop.

I don't see much benefit in the Kindle Paperwhite model over a standard Kindle, Kindle Keyboard or one of the Kindle Fires. If the only purpose is reading, a standard Kindle is cheaper and a Keyboard gives you tactility and ability to browse books and receive books in places without WiFi (with slow 3G). You just need to turn on a light to read. If all you want to do is read ebooks, the Fire models are superfluous but have added benefits.

Finally, if you're a cheapskate and a heavy reader of current novels, thrillers and the like, Kindles may not make any sense at all. There are used paperback bookstores everywhere these days where you can buy and trade. I'm reading an old dogeared John Sandford "Prey" thriller right now that came from a local used bookstore. I'll trade it back when I finish it so the house won't get cluttered with more stuff.

"Regarding stuff, I can recommend the book Stuff (see below)"

Where below. I don'd see any link or more info.

[Are you looking at the web page or a feed reader? --Mike]

I swapped my house for an apartment about 7 years ago, and I have been saved from being buried under "stuff" by digital cameras, e-readers and a tablet.

My 17 shoeboxes of negatives remain in a cupboard under the stairs, but the 50 or so virtual shoeboxes I have accumulated since going digital fit on a single removable HDD (mirrored of course).

In the five years after moving I had to buy two extra bookshelves to house my accumulating paperback collection. I bought a Kindle two years ago and haven't bought another paperback since. I'm selling off the old ones to make space for new photo and reference books when needed.

And finally my monthly trip to the paper recycling stopped when I started reading magazines on my tablet. At the same time, I now download movies and music to it which I can play back through my TV or hi-fi. I don't envisage buying physical media again.

The fact it also fits in the pocket of a small shoulder bag means I can also leave my laptop, image tank and Kindle at home for photo trips as well.

I estimate my pre-digital "stuff" encroachment has come down from around 10 cubic feet a year to less than 1. Over the next 7 years, that will make a lot of difference.


This discussion of people's stuff brought to mind a photo exhibit I saw in San Francisco a while ago. The photographer had gone all over the world and found representative families in each country. They brought all their stuff out of their houses and he photographed them and their stuff. It was pretty interesting to see the differences say between people in the U.S. with piles of cheap goods filling the front yard versus people living in a yurt with a pot and some beautiful blankets/carpets.

Here's a link to a site discussing the project and there is also a book on Amazon (which I haven't read).


Also, I sometimes go to estate sales and most of the time I come home thinking "I'd better start cleaning out the garage."

[Are you looking at the web page or a feed reader? --Mike]

I don't know the difference. I get on the web with Safari and use
http://theonlinephotographer.typepad.com/the_online_photographer/2013/02/stuff.html#comments to get to your page.

In any event would you give me the reference to the book.

More stuff, but since you understand the the charms of readers, I would vote for a color device, Nook, Kindle Fire, iPad Mini; they do monochrome just fine, but they also have ...color, in a very intimate, book like package. Of course, battery life is dismal.

I'm in the process of moving, changing houses. Because there's a five week gap in between, all my "stuff" is in cardboard boxes in a storage unit and I'm staying with friends. I turned out to need about 30 cubic metres to store it all.

Y'know what? Give me a dollar and you can have the lot! All I need to live at the moment fits in my station wagon. Well, I guess I need my friends' bed and a chair and table. But the temptation to ditch the lot and start afresh is very strong.

At 66, this gives me the chance to reevaluate at the new house. It will all (mostly) go into the large garage and I'm going to be ruthless in bringing it into the house. Of course, there's a special book in one of the boxes, and I'll need my big A3+ printer, and my multifunction printer, and my cheap laser, and my three LCD monitors, and ... oh, the fridge and microwave, and my scanner ... uh oh.

"She says I'm not a hoarder"

She's probably right - people self diagnosed rarely have what they think they have.

I was doing ok on "stuff" accumulation until, on the advice of a guest columnist on TOP, I started taking drawing and painting classes. Now I have lots more stuff and painting canvases (even if they are bad), take up a lot of room!

I was recently given a Kindle Paperwhite, and I have to say I'm glad I didn't pay for it.

The claims on battery life must be based on Kirk's code from Star Trek II. The battery life when only used for light reading (an hour or less a day) is a couple of weeks with WiFi off, if I was using it as my main reading matter then it would be a few days at best.

It's not like reading a real book. With the back-light on bright, it's like reading a screen - so why not spend a bit more and get a fully-capable tablet; with it turned down the contrast is too low in anything but bright light, when you have to be careful of reflections that will totally obscure what you're trying to read.

The screen is low resolution compared to print, at just over 200 dpi. I find that I need a larger font to read than I would with an real book - the lettering simply isn't clear enough.

It is locked into Amazon, and can only buy books over WiFi (which means waving your battery life goodbye). Fortunately, as I didn't spend the money on the Kindle, I don't feel the need to justify the outlay by spending money on content. There are free books available from Project Gutenburg that the Kindle can read, but many free books are only available in EPUB format (e.g. Google Books) that can't be read with the Kindle. These can, in principle, be converted to a format the Kindle can read, but so far this seems like too much hassle.

Navigation around books is far less easy than with paper books. If you like flicking back to check something, or referring to a map while reading a travel book, then the Kindle falls down badly.

When it comes to pictures, it can't do colour, only has a very limited (16-level) greyscale, and line drawings suffer from the low resolution. In other words, it can't really do pictures.

In summary, if you can get one for free then it's a good way of getting free access to text-only out-of-copyright works that someone has been good enough to digitize, as long as you don't stray too far from a power source.

I'm looking at the web page and I can't see anything about this "Stuff" book. Am I doing something wrong? (Firefox/OS X)

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