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Nook

How to upgrade the Nook HD to Kit Kat with Cyanogenmod
May 31, 2014 | 4:59 pm

Screenshot_2014-05-31-16-44-33Ever since I got my Nexus 7, my Nook HD has been kind of languishing. I’d upgraded it to the most recent Jelly Bean Cyanogenmod version a while back, but I was curious: what might Kit Kat be like on it? Could I run it? Given that I had the Nexus, I wasn’t in danger of losing my only Android tablet solution if I screwed it up, so I figured, why not break me off a piece? I found some not terribly user-friendly instructions, puzzled my way through them, and commenced. It worked for me, so I’m going to tell you...

Why I won’t buy more Nook books
May 29, 2014 | 11:25 am

nook booksThat's a serious headline. It's not intended as click-bait, and I'm not going on a rant about how evil Barnes and Noble is or how I'll never buy anything from them again. I just won't buy more Nook books. (I'm quite willing to buy a future Nook device, assuming it's good. I love my Nook HD.) I've been meaning to write this story for more than a week, but I got distracted by the whole Amazon/Hachette thing and hesitated to publish this because of the timing. Finally, I decided "what the heck," especially after Chris' excellent piece on why DRM isn't...

Is Barnes & Noble stock underpriced?
May 27, 2014 | 10:58 am

Barron’s has an article by Andrew Bary (paywalled; bypass with Google News) suggesting that Barnes & Noble stock is currently badly underpriced. Trading around $18 right now, Bary argues, B&N could be worth $36 based on the value of the company’s assets alone, especially if B&N follows through on cutting its losses (especially with regard to the Nook) and improving efficiency. What benefits might accrue to B&N shareholders? Bary suggests B&N could split up into three separate companies—bookstores, college bookstores, and Nook—though given the improvements to Nook’s bottom line, this might be unlikely to happen any time soon. Or...

Morning roundup: Of copyright and treaties, OSX Redesign, authors and agents, and a discounted Nook Glowlight
May 2, 2014 | 2:07 am

New Paper Says It's Time To Reasonably Decrease Copyright Term And Rethink Putting Copyright In Treaties (Techdirt) The full paper is well worth reading, detailing just how distorted copyright has become from its original purpose. -- Apple Will Reportedly Unveil 'End-to-End' OSX Redesign at WWDC (GigaOM) Apple will focus on Mac OS X at its upcoming developer’s conference on June 2, according to a new report. -- Authors’ Views on the Value of an Agent (Digital Book World) Are agents worth their fifteen percent? The 2014 Digital Book World and...

What if Amazon bought Barnes & Noble?
March 14, 2014 | 11:12 am

There’s a peculiar phenomenon by which year-old articles sometimes show up again in news aggregators and social network feeds that for some reason see the month and day part of the date and miss the year. (It’s gotten me in trouble before.) But today it brings up an interesting blog post I missed the first time around. And while a lot has changed since the post was written in March 2013, it still bears a little bit of thinking about: might or should Amazon buy the struggling Barnes & Noble? There’s been a lot of speculation...

G Asset Management seeks to buy majority share of B&N, or B&N’s Nook subsidiary
February 21, 2014 | 4:19 pm

So what are we to make of this? An investment firm, G Asset Management, wants to buy 51% of Barnes & Noble in a deal working out to $22 per share. (Its current share price is $18.) This isn’t the first offer it’s made for the business, either. It offered $20 per share in November. If it can’t buy the whole thing, it wants to buy 51% of Barnes & Noble’s Nook business at $5 per share. The firm thinks that B&N should split its retail and Nook businesses. The interesting thing to me is that, if B&N were...

What will I do with my Nook Simple Touch now?
February 19, 2014 | 10:25 am

nook simple touchI wonder if my Nook Simple Touch will become a collector’s item. Most likely, it will just be exactly what it is now – a gadget collecting dust with the battery killed off long ago. I haven’t used my NST in months, maybe even a year. So, it was not surprising when I read on The Digital Reader that Barnes & Noble discontinued the Nook Touch. I didn’t have any major issues with my NST, but once I got my Google Nexus 7 two summers ago, it became my little computer away from my laptop, including an e-reader, RSS reader, Candy Crusher, Facebook...

Barnes & Noble names Nook division CEO Michael Huseby to overall CEO slot
January 8, 2014 | 2:20 pm

Barnes and Noble has just picked up a new overall CEO. Or at least a new-old one. Digital Book World and Publishers Weekly report that B&N has moved Michael Huseby, former CEO of the Nook division, into the top CEO spot left by William Lynch who vacated in July. Huseby said in a statement in the press release: My role, as I see it, is to enhance and unlock the value of these businesses for our shareholders. We are well-positioned in today’s dynamic reading and learning markets and confident in our ability to provide our customers...

Barnes & Noble bookseller LiveJournal community offers candid, depressing look behind the scenes at B&N stores
December 19, 2013 | 7:31 pm

Over on The Passive Voice, I found a link to a LJ community where Barnes & Noble employees anonymously discuss their work lives. I’ve been reading through a few comment threads, and wow is it depressing. You would sort of expect Barnes & Nobles to be decent places to work, wouldn’t you? All the books, the surrounding of pure distillate of culture on every shelf. It’s not an “everything store” for cheap and shoddy goods like Wal-Mart, after all. Surely they pay their employees a decent wage and treat them decently, right? Right? …wrong. The comments...

Independent bookseller suit against Amazon tossed, while Barnes & Noble faces SEC investigation
December 10, 2013 | 11:44 am

Pro tip: if you're going to file a lawsuit alleging "conspiracy," have more evidence in hand than just "they did something I don't like." Andrew Albanese reports at Publishers Weekly that Federal Judge Jed Rakoff just tossed out a lawsuit filed by independent booksellers alleging a conspiracy between the Big Six publishers and Amazon to restrain trade and lock rivals out of the Kindle platform. (Gosh, those publishers sure are busy, to be involved in one conspiracy with Apple against Amazon, and then another conspiracy with Amazon against everybody else at the same time! How did they ever keep everything...

Hello Android; Goodbye iPod Touch and iPad
December 2, 2013 | 6:25 pm

GEDC1592A couple of years ago, I wrote about how there was no good Android iPod Touch alternative. Then a couple of months ago, I discussed the possibility that the best iPod Touch alternative might be cheap Android smart phone. Shortly after that, I finally took the plunge into going Android all the way. I had experimented with Android before that, of course. I had an inexpensive Zeepad for several months before breaking the screen. It was almost unusably slow, but intriguing enough that I wanted to try a real Android experience. So, as chronicled here already, I picked up a cheap...

Factory-Refurbished 8-Inch Nook HD Android Tablet now $70 on eBay
October 25, 2013 | 12:32 pm

GEDC1556 Remember that 8” Nook HD refurb I got a couple of months ago? An eBay seller has a “limited quantity” of factory-refurbished units available at the amazing price of $70 each. (Just over 1,900 had been sold by the time I wrote this.) You can add a two-year SquareTrade warranty for another $17. (Update: The price went up to $80 after 2,000 units were sold. Still a great bargain, though.) As I’ve written elsewhere, this is a great little Android tablet. Maybe not so much if you stick with the stock B&N operating system, which will give you Google Play but...