Four Pillars: Fulfilment: Amazon Online Reader

Chris Locke pinged me about this. It seemed only right that I tried it out on Cluetrain….

Very interesting. I’ve played with it for a while, but have yet to try the whole shebang on an Amazon Upgrade Program book. Will do so pretty soon, but probably not tonight. Tried it vicariously anyway.
The software stayed up while I tried to check its idiotproofness. Some of the digitising wasn’t up to scratch, but everything was nevertheless readable.

Liked the way a number of the elements of fulfilment were all there in one “holistic” screen. A title, a handle with which to pick the thing up, whatever route one took to discover it. Something more than a Look Inside function, a reasonable way to flip through the book.

It was easy to pretend to buy the book. But no easy way to get back to the Online Reader, and I’m not a Back Button fan. Something they should think about. I want to be able to drop something in my cart and still page through it.

Good search, the expected levels: Amazon books, all Amazon products, the web.

Absolutely LOVE the Surprise Me feature. Now when they give me that on a StumbleUpon basis, so that I can be taken randomly to a collaboratively filtered page in a book I haven’t read, they’re cooking something. I guess they need to avoid pages that Say The Butler Did It….
Will wait to try out the Highlight Bookmark Print stuff, but it looks good. Seems to work seamlessly, do I sense AJAX?

Biggest problem? I began to feel even more frustrated than usual about my having two different Amazon personas, one for and one for  Hey Amazon, it’s time to help people like me merge the two. If eBay doesn’t care and lets me move easily between the two then so should you. I don’t want to land up with two lockers.

That’s when it gets interesting. Can I put books I buy from Barnes and Noble into my Amazon locker? Or the other way around? Am I being unreasonable? The more lockers I have, the more locks I’m going to need. One locker please for all electronic purchases. Otherwise I will have many locks many locker and each lock designed to hogtie me to something.

And then we will all start feeling like Gulliver. Millions of little irritating things tying us down. Anyone want to start a generic electronic locker business, where I can put my iTunes and my Amazon and my Harvard Business Review and my BusinessWeek and and and, come talk to me.

Which reminds me. I think Google should have a new button on its main page. Where it says Web Images Groups News. I need a button there called Wikipedia. Yes I know I can go to Wikipedia myself and search there, but why can’t I do it via Google? I think of Wikipedia like I think of Images. So there.

Let me know what you think

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