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Wikipedia, my guide to the universe

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Apr. 10th, 2007 | 04:09 pm

Do you know what I find I want?

I want Wikipedia in a travel form. I've been hunting around lately looking for an e-book reader that would let me take along a hyperlinked copy of wikipedia when I travel.

When I was a kid I would sit in the floor of our laundry room, where our encyclopedia set was kept, and pull volume after volume from the shelf jumping from article to article. I would keep pieces of paper in pages so I would have a way to "jump back" to a previous story.

I want the same for wikipedia, but I don't want it to be my laptop. I want the device to be quiet, have enough power for a couple of days, and not generate a ton of heat.

You would think that an e-book reader would be all of this but the currently sold ones can not. You can put wikipedia on one, it is not too difficult, but today a hyperlinked version does not exist.

And the cost of the device? Want an e-book reader in the under $200 range?

Forget it, all of the e-book readers are around $350 or more (for no good reason other then demand from what I can tell).

You would think that a market for this would exist. Simple "wikipedia" books could be handed out in third world countries. Low power usage, simple to use, and all of the information that you could want (eventually that is).

Oh well, I am sure it will happen at some point.

Maybe Wikipedia could sell ads to buy devices like this to spread their content around the world :)

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Comments {9}

Ivy

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from: ivymcallister
date: Apr. 10th, 2007 11:19 pm (UTC)
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Would it also have "Don't Panic" on the front in large, friendly letters?

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Brian "Krow" Aker

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from: krow
date: Apr. 10th, 2007 11:20 pm (UTC)
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It would come with a free towel :)

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Roy Corey

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from: xerhino
date: Apr. 10th, 2007 11:34 pm (UTC)
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And it's way cheaper than Encyclopedia Galactica.

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El JoPe Magnífico

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from: jope
date: Apr. 10th, 2007 11:59 pm (UTC)
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OLPC?

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Brian "Krow" Aker

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from: krow
date: Apr. 11th, 2007 12:13 am (UTC)
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I think an e-book is a better form factor.... something which is designed for reading.

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El JoPe Magnífico

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from: jope
date: Apr. 11th, 2007 04:59 am (UTC)
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You did say "send it to the third world" -- dunno how well a dainty e-book form factor would do there. Yeah, I personally would prefer a slimmer factor. For my kid, using Wikipedia to cheat her way through school reports, I'd say OLPC.

But more, check the "DCON" bit in the specs. Do e-book readers work that way? (I honestly don't know, but it was a feature that caught my eye as unusual in a laptop)

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Lackadaisical Sophist

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from: pinkfu
date: Apr. 11th, 2007 01:02 am (UTC)
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"Put Wikipedia on your iPod"
http://lifehacker.com/software/ipod/put-wikipedia-on-your-ipod-157398.php

:)

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Brian "Krow" Aker

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from: krow
date: Apr. 11th, 2007 01:25 am (UTC)
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No hyper links :)

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Lackadaisical Sophist

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from: pinkfu
date: Apr. 11th, 2007 01:38 am (UTC)
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I am not sure I understand. Hyperlinked how? Do you mean hyperlinks to the internet-wikipedia from the ipod-wikipedia?

The ipod-wikipedia is linked within itself. If you go to an entry there and there is a linked work (as it would be on the wikipedia page, i.e. "The roses are red and purplish." -- and clicking on "purplish" would take you to the Purplish entry) it links to that entry on the ipod ... just as it would online, but yanno, on the ipod.

I've had a long day, I may not be explaining it well. :D

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