A sad story

I bought myself an I-river Story e-reader on the weekend.  I wanted an e-reader with a qwerty keyboard because particularly when I’m doing “work” reading, I take notes- usually on a piece of A4 scrap paper that I fold in half and insert into the book, adding extra pages as I go.  With a keyboard, I thought, I could take notes as I go- albeit probably shorter than I am used to, as the keyboard is very small- but it would mean that I wouldn’t have scribbled A4 half-pages scattered around the place.  I didn’t want to be tied in Kindle’s publishing format- it seems that EPub is working out as the common format, and I resent that the Kindle doesn’t support it.  I was hoping that I-river would reduce its price in competition with the Kindle, but no such luck.  I made a deal with myself that I wouldn’t buy it until August, in the vain hope of a price-reduction, and last weekend I finally made the purchase.

So far, I’ve been really disappointed- so disappointed that I can hardly bear to look at the thing. The instructions are HOPELESS- barely one paragraph on a fold-out sheet with every other language known to mankind.  There’s a manual on the I-river itself, which is perverse as you need to be able to use it to read the manual.  To be honest, I just don’t get how to use the wretched thing.  The opening screen gives you 2 options: 1. Charge battery  2. Connect removable disk.  What disk? The little card that came with it? Do I need to charge the battery first?  Stuffed if I know.   But I do know that to make your computer recognize it, you have to select “Connect removable disk”.  The I-river is the “removable disk”.  Is it just me, or is this a rather obscure instruction?  Then, about 40 pages into the manual, I learn that I need to download software from the I-river site.  Would it not have been useful to have that information up front? What ever happened to Step 1, Step 2, Step 3.   Sometimes I can get my computer to read it; other times I cannot- is it faulty, or am I faulty?

Along with Tony Abbott (shudder), I am not a tech-head (nor do I aspire to be Prime Minister), but I’m not an absolute dunce with technology either- although I suspect that my children would beg to differ.  I am the only person in the house who can programme the video, for example.  But this I-river has me stumped.  I think I’ve been sold a pup.

I shall let you know if I ever get to like it.

6 responses to “A sad story

  1. I think you are on the cutting edge here, almost. The info will be out there on the net. Google is your friend. Was it our first computer or the older electronic word processor that almost made us slash our wrists? Probably the latter.

  2. It’s posts like this that make me think I’m not ready for an e-reader just yet either. I’ll be interested to hear how you progress Janine.

  3. I’ve taken to the feral kids note taking method – a small (paper) notepad with attached pencil; I lose not too many notes that way 😉

  4. Oh Janine, I feel for you! I don’t know anyone who’s got one, but I think the advice above is probably good: ‘Google iRiver installation’ or something like that and either you will find someone who’s written an explanation you can understand or you’ll find a forum where you can ask.
    I’d suggest also that you go back to the shop and ask for help. Suss out when the young tech-heads are there; they’ll probably enjoy helping you.
    Good luck!

  5. Yes, good advice from Lisa. I google a lot now if I want to problem solve. Re Kindle, as you probably know I’ve decided to go for it. The format issue was one of my main concerns, but in the end I decided that there would be enough available for me to use it as an “entree” to the eBook world. The whole ongoing non-standard thing in all sorts of technologies is irritating though.

  6. Pingback: ‘Roughing it in the Bush’ by Susannah Moodie | The Resident Judge of Port Phillip

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