Friday, May 08, 2009

Kindle DX for Scientific Papers?

Just out of curiosity, I wondered what scientific papers look like on the Kindle DX's 1200 x 824 pixel resolution. The native PDF support is great, but exactly how readable are those tiny little subscripts in mathematical formula?

Although it will probably take some time until I can lay my hands on a real device, I did the test by scaling a page of one of my own papers to the Kindle's resolution. Check for yourself by clicking on the thumbnails below.

modeoriginal version
(vectorial)
scanned version
(IEEE archive)
kindle portrait
portrait
(full page zoom: page fits within 824 x 1200 pixels)


kindle landscape
landscape
(width rescaled to 1200 pixels)

(The original PDFs can be found here and here.)

In portrait mode, some details might be difficult to distinguish, especially when the PDF is generated from a scanned image. Check for instance this formula, from the scanned version in portrait mode:
But in landscape mode everything looks perfectly readable (at least in this probably very unrealistic experiment). This is the same formula, as it appears in landscape mode:
So I might buy one when it's launched in Europe. But the price needs to be slightly lower. $300 (or its equivalent in €) would be fine. And it needs an SD slot. And Wifi. Apart from that it seems to be fine.

6 comments:

memming said...

Good experiment. It's very convincing. Maybe I'll keep my eye on eBay to grab a second handed device. Thanks!

Steven said...

Thanks :) eBay might be a good option indeed. I just don't understand why it is two times as expensive as a basic notebook...

Steven said...

(I meant "netbook" there)

memming said...

Because of the life time sprint whispernet perhaps? Monopoly? ;)

Steven said...

Or because of other obvious reasons...

Anonymous said...

good experiment, just wondered about the same thing...
have you tried to make notes in it? is is possible? In amazons books it should be possible, but it would be great if it is in papers too...