Work+Life: CES dreams, part one

By Jack Beaudoin
10:09 AM

It's about two weeks to the opening of CES09 in Las Vegas. Since I've yet to convince my boss that Healthcare IT News readers truly care about consumer gadgets, I can't go. But I can use my first blog entries to describe some devices and apps I'd like to see at the show.

                                                       Today's wish: Kindle on 'roids
I'm a reader and a gadget guy, so you'd think the Kindle would appeal to me. But Kindlistas, tell me this: If the Kindle is so revolutionary because it lets me pack thousands of books into one device, why does it still force me to carry other devices, i.e. a laptop and a smartphone? Here's are some features I'd like to see in a next generation reading slate:

Media player - I know, I know, they don't call it a reader for nothing. Still, imagine being able to view pictures or movies in this form factor. Is this compatible with Kindle's famed "electronic-paper" display? Probably not, but maybe you could flip it over to get a touch screen. And with that you'd get a...

Web viewer - You can already read the latest blog entries from thousands of blogs. But that ain't the power to browse the Web, baby. As an iPhone user, I love the ability to check Web sites from anywhere, but I would like a bigger screen... like the size of Kindle's screen

Native Diigo - The Kindle has the ability to bookmark and annotate texts, but imagine being able to share your bookmarks and annotations with other like-minded enthusiasts. On the Web, the social-bookmarking service Diigo ( does exactly that -- you can highlight parts of a Web page, add comments and questions, and then share it with others.

Handwriting and voice recognition - I'm not sure this is *really* necessary, given Kindle's built in keyboard. But what the heck -- I can dream, can't I? I've been a professional typer for two decades, and I still think handwriting and voice are better input methods. What could top that? Combining handwriting recognition and  voice recognition, something the new Livescribe Pulse ( is moving toward.

NewtonI know, I know... Someone will tell me to buy a tablet netbook and leave the Kindle alone. Or wait until a next-generation iPhone nails handwriting recognition -- see the rumors here. Did someone say Newton

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