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bklvr896
Posts: 4,801
Registered: ‎12-31-2009

Re: New Glow Light, early impressions


keriflur wrote:

NookGardener wrote:

bklvr896 wrote:

NookGardener wrote:
That's it exactly. Was hoping they had added an option to turn off the auto download feature under Settings. The default could be that auto download was enabled. It's design decisions like this that have me convinced that the software designers don't actually read a lot of books....

Most software designers work off specs provided by whoever hired them, they normally don't get to add or remove features because they think its a good or bad idea.  They can recommend changes, but management has to listen and agree. 


You are right. I stand corrected! Whoever SETS THE SPECS doesnt read a lot, never re-reads anything, or only has a single device...:smileysad:


The people who are deciding the spec of the devices are likely very high up at the company. There are a whole host of people who can make recommendations to management (pretty much the entire project team - devs, business anaylsts, project managers, engineers, etc.) but it's been my experience as a BA and QA tester that management tends to pay more attention to cost and timeline than the recommendations of the people doing the work, and by cost I mean cost of the dev, not cost to the company.  I've seen projects that would have allowed teams to reallocate people (via tremendous reduction in workload) shelved even though the dev was done, just to save a couple weeks of testing and fine-tuning.


That's been my experience also.  You can make all the recommendations you want, but, as you said, they're basically interested in cost and, in a lot of cases, just think they know better.  It can be frustrating if you're on a team to develop something, provide your recommendations and have management change them, many times for the worse, without any input or discussion.

 

Since my programming skills are normally just good enough to get me in trouble, I can't say why the won't fix the shelving.  But, AFAIK, it's not any better on any other device out there.  I think managment of the companies just don't get it or don't think it's a big enough selling feature to warrant the cost.

flyingtoastr
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions


MacMcK1957 wrote:

I can't imagine why a company that actually had exactly such a shelving system, on the first Nook, decided to trash it and replace it with the ridiculous system on all the e-ink devices since then.


It's worth remembering that BN completely rebuilt the OS from the ground up when they moved from the N1E to the NST. So it wasn't so much "trashing" the old shelving system, it was more just not redoing it for the new OS.

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keriflur
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions


flyingtoastr wrote:

MacMcK1957 wrote:

I can't imagine why a company that actually had exactly such a shelving system, on the first Nook, decided to trash it and replace it with the ridiculous system on all the e-ink devices since then.


It's worth remembering that BN completely rebuilt the OS from the ground up when they moved from the N1E to the NST. So it wasn't so much "trashing" the old shelving system, it was more just not redoing it for the new OS.


And where did they put the old system? *side-eyes the trash bin*

 

They could have chosen to rebuild the old system, just like they could choose to code for page numbers in the ToC.  They've chosen not to do these things, because they don't see them as important enough for some reason.  We as consumers are allowed to judge them for that.

flyingtoastr
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions

Where on earth did I say you weren't allowed to complain about a subpar system?

 

All I'm saying is that it's a bit more complext than "it was better on the N1E and they could have just ported that over". Calm the jets.

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Mercury_Glitch
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions

Since we seem to be fond of calling upon examples from Apple, when they produced OS X there was a lot of clamor over things that went by the wayside from OS 9.  But most of it just didn't make it in.

 

The NST-NGL system might not be what you want it to be.  However the NGL system has shown improvements in a cleaner interface.  The homescreen is actually useful now and (at least for me) is not showing smutty titles.  The Shop has also been cleaned up, and improved.  The 'home' of Shop shows whats popular in the middle, on top are catagories "book" "magazine" "newspaper" and "my wish list", in the middle are various selections from BN like the Daily Find, and at the bottom are things like "suggestions for you" which when tapped breaks down in to subjects based on what you've purchased (shows sci/fi-fantasy award winners, games to read, along with some others for me, most look like they actually are interesting).  Other things at the bottom are NYT best sellers, Newstand best sellers, 2.99 Nook Books, Nook Channels (which breaks down in to some genre specific things).

 

So yes, the shelving should be improved.  But all the above were things that were asked for at one point or another.  Yes it's been awhile in getting here, but lets not just slam B&N for 'throwing things out', there were broken things in the N1E OS.  Perhaps the best option was a total rewrite. 

 

And yes I agree the ToC change was dumb, it should be changed back.  It should have been changed back in 1.2.1. 

The Wheel weaves as the Wheel wills, and we are only the thread of the Pattern.
flyingtoastr
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions

You don't even have to go back to the OS9 to X transition. Look at all the power users screaming about the desperately needed face lift for iWork that was pushed out for free last week because they removed some rarely used functionality. In exchange they finally get universal file formats, an interface that doesn't make your eyes bleed, and some other useful tools. But because it doesn't natively support Applescript the ubertechs are going nuts. It happens everywhere.
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keriflur
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions

Did you actually just say that "power users" should be happy to lose features? Seriously? Have you thought at all about the meaning of that term?
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bobstro
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions

I keep forgetting. B&N is just like Apple. It's worked so well for them in the past.

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Mercury_Glitch
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions


bobstro wrote:

I keep forgetting. B&N is just like Apple. It's worked so well for them in the past.


 

Who said they're just like Apple?  A comparison in the treatment of a change of OS from one generation to the next was all that was mentioned.  Well ok, I did say the forum members like using Apple as an example, but I think we can all agree that that's true.

The Wheel weaves as the Wheel wills, and we are only the thread of the Pattern.
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bobstro
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions

[ Edited ]
Mercury_Glitch wrote:

Who said they're just like Apple?  A comparison in the treatment of a change of OS from one generation to the next was all that was mentioned. 

 

Your examples are completely off base. I am disappointed in the new device because B&N has managed to make it less useful for basic ereader purposes. This is not the same as:

 

  1. A major OS upgrade that completely revamps the underlying software to provide new features for the future. Other than the superficial screen layout that you were able to cite, very little appears to have changed in terms of core software functionality. The new device still uses the aging Android 2.1 base. Shelf organizing functions are still rudimentary and poor. What is the big gain in terms of basic functionality other than a prettier home screen? Is that it?
  2. Removal of little-used legacy features. Ability to store B&N content is basic, core functionality. The new device manages to limit both B&N's best customers and those who wish to maintain a large-ish collection of content from multiple sources. By carving out two separate partitions for content with no option for external storage, B&N has perpetuated the worst of their past mistakes without giving the same expandability the old device had. They've reserved 500+ MB for sideloaded content that heavy B&N customers can't use for B&N purchases. They've limited sideloaded content to only that 500+ MB for customers that purchase from other sources. They've made the new scheme a lose-lose proposition for the two categories of heaviest ebook purchasers.

Your examples trivialize legitimate concerns about actual device limitations. I'm happy people like the new device. I like it myself in many ways. B&N has made design decisions that break core functionality for me and, I assume, others.

 

I get annoyed when you and FT try to make it sound like pointing out significant shortcomings in core device functionality is idle carping about things nobody cares about. I have no idea what figures B&N uses to calculate how many ebooks will fit on the device, but my collection of titles on my travel reader (formerly BeachNOOK) consists of 228 epubs that require 793 MB of storage. On day one, the space for sideloaded content is insufficient for my "carry" collection. Had I purchased those same titles exclusively from B&N, it looks like I'd also have exceeded available storage for B&N content. I'm not whining about some 10+ year old feature being dropped. I'm not moaning that the new devices is different. I'm letting everybody know that it is a dead end for me on day one. (My low-end Kobo device, also using 4 GB flash, no removable storage, has 580 MB of free space left.) I suspect I am not alone.

 

If your point is that B&N is taking their devices in the same direction as Kobo and Amazon, then I have to wonder what differentiates B&N from the others? "Just like the others, but with LESS storage!" doesn't sound like a winning advertising campaign slogan to me.

 

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MacMcK1957
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions


flyingtoastr wrote:

Where on earth did I say you weren't allowed to complain about a subpar system?

 

All I'm saying is that it's a bit more complext than "it was better on the N1E and they could have just ported that over". Calm the jets.


They could have just ported over the user interface design rather than a redesign from scratch that is really unworkable for anyone with a significant library.

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bobstro
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions

MacMcK1957 wrote:
[...] They could have just ported over the user interface design rather than a redesign from scratch that is really unworkable for anyone with a significant library.
And in the process, fixed a problem that has been persistent on the NST/G products since day one, improving things rather than just carrying the same problems forward while adding new ones. Of course, it remains to be seen whether NST/G purchasers will see any more updates. B&N seems to be making a point of ignoring their best customers.

 

flyingtoastr
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions


bobstro wrote:

I get annoyed when you and FT try to make it sound like pointing out significant shortcomings in core device functionality is idle carping about things nobody cares about.



I get annoyed when you try to make it sound like anything that disagrees with your theory that BN Is The Antichrist is somehow a personal attack on you.

 

All I pointed out is that there were technical reasons why BN can't just port over the system from the N1E. All MG pointed out was that this kind of thing (upgrades removing functionality) happens everywhere, it's not unique to BN. That's it. Nowhere did either of us say "anyone who has lots of books deserves to be dicked over".

 

Given that both of us dealt with power users (and regular users) on a daily basis, I think you should be able to assume we know what affects people.

 


bobstro wrote:
By carving out two separate partitions for content with no option for external storage, B&N has perpetuated the worst of their past mistakes without giving the same expandability the old device had.
You get three choices here:
1. Continue using Android 2 and having to deal with seperate storage partitions. Calibre works. Mounts fast and easily even on new computers. But you have to deal with not having unified storage.
2. Upgrade to Android 4 and have to deal with MTP. No Calibre. No easy plug-and-drop. Constant failed connections and specialized software required for every computer just to connect. But hey, you get 1 storage partition.
3. Forget Android and move to Linux like the Kindle and Kobo lines did. You can set up storage file systems however the hell you want, but you can't ahck it to run your favorite apps anymore.
 
I'm willing to bet people will complain no matter what they do here. Blame Google.
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ConnieL4193
Posts: 175
Registered: ‎09-17-2013

Re: New Glow Light, early impressions

Hey all. At the risk of getting thrown under the bus here, could we move on from this whole shelving issue please? I get that it's an important thing to many of you but i'd like to hear thoughts and opinions about the rest of the device.  I would assume you have those too?  :smileyindifferent:

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bobstro
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions

[ Edited ]

flyingtoastr wrote:

[...] I get annoyed when you try to make it sound like anything that disagrees with your theory that BN Is The Antichrist is somehow a personal attack on you.

 

You might want to look in a mirror there, FT. You're the one that compared comments about legitimate shortcomings of the new device to dropping unused legacy features.

 

All I pointed out is that there were technical reasons why BN can't just port over the system from the N1E.

 

You also compared the current issues to the dropping of AppleScript from a software product.

 

All MG pointed out was that this kind of thing (upgrades removing functionality) happens everywhere, it's not unique to BN. That's it. Nowhere did either of us say "anyone who has lots of books deserves to be dicked over".

 

No, you didn't say that, but your comparison certainly trivializes the issues. The GlowLight shortcomings are not "just like" a revamp of the OS that MG compared it to. In fact, very little changed with the OS (see below). They are not "just like" dropping a little used scripting feature from a mature product that you compared it to.

 

Given that both of us dealt with power users (and regular users) on a daily basis, I think you should be able to assume we know what affects people.

 

You're fine until you start dismissing legitimate users, FT. This is your history. Do it to me, and I'll comment back in kind. Yo.

 

You get three choices here:

1. Continue using Android 2 and having to deal with seperate storage partitions. Calibre works. Mounts fast and easily even on new computers. But you have to deal with not having unified storage.

 

You missed one. The obvious one:

 

4. Point the internal B&N storage to the shared partition. Roustabout has demonstrated similar techniques for relocating B&N content to external FAT storage on the NST/G line. It works. Even if they can't use FAT for B&N content for some reason, just use symlinks to point to the epub files stored on the FAT partition. They'd at least be able to increase the total amount of storage available for either category of content. 

 

[...] 3. Forget Android and move to Linux like the Kindle and Kobo lines did. You can set up storage file systems however the hell you want, but you can't ahck it to run your favorite apps anymore.

 

Ah, so we're to thank B&N for cooperating so closely with the developer community on the NSTG? Are they providing info on rooting the new device so we can try to address bad B&N design decisions? FYI, the main reasons I wanted to hack my NST was to provide some basic functions that can easily be done on Linux.

 

[...] I'm willing to bet people will complain no matter what they do here. Blame Google.

 

It's a B&N device with B&N imposed shortcomings. This isn't not liking the color or the shape or the logo. I can't use the new device the same way that I used the old device.

 

Lest anybody think storage is only a limitation that will affect power users, consider the following:

 

  • Anybody can create epub "books" directly in Wikipedia. It's now trivial to select any number of wikipedia articles of interest and have them bundled into an ebook for easy download and sideloading. A quick test with 4 pages is 380 KB.
  • Calibre can create epub files from pages you tag using "read later" services such as Pocket and Instapaper. My test Instapaper file is 8 MB. (Kobo even provides native Pocket integration in their latest firmware.)

More content is becoming available in the epub format beyond just books. Those who like to snark that print has gone the way of the buggy whip surely realize that they'll need more storage, not less, for offline reading in the future. Even "Julie". You may not have 400 ebooks, but might you have more than 400 ebooks, saved articles and reference items that you'd like to carry?

 

The GlowLight does less while looking prettier. Not a very compelling argument to buy a new device from B&N. If you want to draw comparisons, this is more like firing an old competent employee to hire one that does less but dresses better.

flyingtoastr
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions


bobstro wrote:

The GlowLight does less while looking prettier.



Oh the irony.

 

This is the exact thing that power users are saying about the new iWork. And it's interesting that you accuse me of being dismissive of NOOK owners while doing the exact thing to iWork users.

 


bobstro wrote:

No, you didn't say that, but your comparison certainly trivializes the issues. The GlowLight shortcomings are not "just like" a revamp of the OS that MG compared it to. In fact, very little changed with the OS (see below). They are not "just like" dropping a little used scripting feature from a mature product that you compared it to.

 



You might want to check out that mirror too, kiddo.

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keriflur
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions

Maybe I missed it, but where does Bobstro say that what was done to iWork was a good thing? IMO what happened to iWork sucks just as much for those folks as this does for nook users. The solution everyone's giving for the iWork issue is to just go use MS Office (aka the big name in the biz). So are you advocating a similar solution, and saying we should all just use kindle?
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bobstro
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions

[ Edited ]

flyingtoastr wrote: 

[...] This is the exact thing that power users are saying about the new iWork. And it's interesting that you accuse me of being dismissive of NOOK owners while doing the exact thing to iWork users.

 

And yet, it's NOT THE SAME THING. This is not a forum about iWork. Not everything in life relates to Apple. B&N IS NOT APPLE. The NOOK GlowLight, an ebook reader, has limitations on how it can be used to read ebooks.

 

You might want to check out that mirror too, kiddo.

 

You've developed a predicable pattern, FT. Any time somebody points out a limitation of a B&N device, you seem to think pointing out something obliquely related that Apple has done (the app store is one example) makes it all right for B&N to do the same thing. Your insistence that B&N's limited app selection was OK because Apple also has a closed ecosystem didn't exactly pan out, did it? Again, B&N IS NOT APPLE. 

 

B&N needs, desperately, to attract new buyers. To do so, they need to offer products that offer features competitive with the alternatives. They need to enhance products to get existing customers to stick with them in the face of increasing competition. Pointing out absurd comparisons between broken core functionality and something completely unrelated that is similar only in that "it changed" is the strategy you embraced before, and the strategy that so completely failed B&N in the past. B&N IS NOT APPLE. 

 

Here are the issues as I see them:

 

  • The B&N GlowLight has insufficient storage space for purchasers of a moderate amount of B&N-sourced epubs. Using my sample collection, I can fit ~574 ebooks.
  • The B&N GlowLight has insufficient storage space for purchasers of a moderate amount of non-B&N-sourced epubs. Using my sample collection, I can fit ~147 ebooks.

How does pointing out anything Apple does affect these problems B&N baked into their latest flagship eInk reader? "They also broke stuff" is a pretty sorry answer. 

 

And lest you want to keep flogging the inane iWork comparison, there's this: "... full AppleScript support could theoretically be restored in a later update." How's B&N's history of fixing software issues (missing page numbers in ToC, shelving) been? How does B&N compare to Apple in that regard?

 

 

 

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keriflur
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions


bobstro wrote:
B&N IS NOT APPLE. 

I don't think this statement should be pushed aside.  Apple can take features from iWork, from the iOS, etc., and while a vocal minority will roar, sales for idevices and icontent will continue to soar.  This is not true for B&N.  B&N needs every single sale that it can get, of anything.  It needs to keep folks inside its ecosystem.

 

Another way B&N is not Apple - Apple is not above providing large-storage options for a premium price.  B&N is not providing medium, let alone large, storage options for any price.  With Apple, if my content doesn't fit in the base model and I don't want to use the cloud, I just pay more.  They keep me in their ecosystem even if I'm not using my device the way they want me to.  But with B&N, if you don't fit their model, you've got no choice but to go elsewhere.  Not smart.

flyingtoastr
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Re: New Glow Light, early impressions


keriflur wrote:
Maybe I missed it, but where does Bobstro say that what was done to iWork was a good thing? IMO what happened to iWork sucks just as much for those folks as this does for nook users. The solution everyone's giving for the iWork issue is to just go use MS Office (aka the big name in the biz). So are you advocating a similar solution, and saying we should all just use kindle?

Where did I say that BN's shelving system was satisfactory, or that people unhappy with the system should just suck it up? I didn't. I've never said that.

All I ever said was that the shelving system on the N1E can't just be dropped onto the NST/NGL because it's programmed for a completely different OS (i.e. it would require a rebuild from scratch). Bobstro is the one strawmanning myself and MG.