I just saw that the Amazon Kindle DX 9.7″ eReader (Kindle DX, Free 3G, 9.7″ E Ink Display, 3G Works Globally) got a pretty deep price cut, down to $269. The eReader doesn’t have the full-blown color screen or Android experience of the Kindle Fire, but I’ve found that it is awesome for reading technical documentation. The large, no glare, black & white screen is distraction free, helping me to focus on the (let’s be honest, sometimes boring) technical documentation and publications I’m reading. I carry my DX in my backpack, loaded with technical books, formal documentation, and the occasional bit of pleasure reading. The battery life is great and 3G access on the DX guarantees that I have my documents ready to go when I’m on a flight, subway, or at a client site. The large screen easily displays diagrams, charts, and graphs without scrolling or funky resizing like you see on a smaller screen. I also like being able to highlight and notate sections of text for later reference – the full keyboard on the DX model makes this easy.
Here’s a pic of my Kindle DX (on top of my VMworld 2011 backpack) with the VMware View 5.1 Administration document open with a big chart of View GPO policies displayed. Not too shabby!
The price drop probably indicates some newer Kindle and or Kindle Fire models are soon to be released, but for the price and abuse the thing can take in the old backpack I don’t mind having a slightly older piece of technology for this use case.
VMware makes much of their documentation available in .mobi and .epub format, as well as PDF. Head over to https://www.vmware.com/support/pubs/ and grab the .mobi file. Connect your Kindle DX to your computer and drop & drag the files to the Kindle’s storage. If you are getting technical docs from another vendor in .epub format, grab a free copy of Calibre (available for PC, Mac, or Linux) and convert the files from .epub to .mobi. You can also load PDF documents in the same way, although formatting can sometimes get a bit funny. If formatting is off, email the PDF to your @kindle.com address and Amazon will convert it for you and deliver it over 3G or WiFi to your Kindle within minutes.
Beyond the complete sets of VMware vSphere, VMware View, and VMware Site Recovery Manager (SRM) documentation loaded on my DX, I current have some other VMware titles handy, including: VMware vSphere 5 Clustering Technical Deepdive, Mastering VMware vSphere 5, and VMware View 5 Desktop Virtualization Solutions. These come in handy as I studied for my VMware VCP5 upgrade exam, as well as my current preparations for the VMware VCP5-DT, VCAP-DCD, and VCP-IaaS exams.
Grab your Kindle DX today while the git’n is good: Kindle DX, Free 3G, 9.7″ E Ink Display, 3G Works Globally.