WikiReader - first impressions

Tilman Baumann tilman at
Tue Nov 10 17:19:43 CET 2009

Hi Sean,

I was playing around a bit with the sources on github lately. I have
stumbled over some issues.
I know I can go to code at (and I will)
But I guess we should have a mailing list for software aspects of

Just a thought. :)

Sean Moss-Pultz wrote:
> Hi Torfinn
> Really appreciate your feedback. My comments are inline:
> On Tue, Nov 10, 2009 at 5:48 AM, Torfinn Ingolfsen <tingox at>
> wrote:
>> Hello,
>> After a few days with the WikiReader, here are my first impressions:
>> The obvious things:
>> - good size: this device is small enough to drag along (ok, it won't fit
>> in my trouser pockets), but has a big enough screen to read on
>> comfortably
>> - use in places: I knew about the "missing" backlight. I can read the
>> WikiReader while commuting (most tram's have good lighting), but on the
>> other hand it is difficult in a "cosy" cafe, because the lighting is not
>> s good there.
>> - scrolling: this works great, even better than I thought. One friend
>> asked: how do I get to the next page, but was happy with scrolling after
>> I told him to use that instead.
> Are you running the latest kernel? (The way to tell is if you have
> kinetic scrolling, yes == latest kernel)
> Scrolling is really really good there.
>> - history: it's there when I turn on the device - and I like that.
>> - the search button removes the on screen keyboard so I can scroll on
>> the search screen. Yes! I like that.
> That's another fun "random" like way of searching.
>> The questions:
>> - search screen: where is the "delete word and start over" button? (this
>> was the first question I got from two friends trying the device)
> You can hold down the backspace key. It will delete the word extremely
> fast. We're working on a few minor UI changes for the next release.
> Clear will be more obvious.
>> - why isn't there a back button? Sure, I can use the history button and
>> select from the list (and that works quite well), but a back button
>> would save one keypress
> We didn't want to add another button. We might use left to right
> swipes in a later release. Not sure yet...
>> Annoyances:
>> - it is impossible (for me at least) to take out the microSD card
>> without using a tool (pliers or something). Why do I want to take it
>> out? To actually show people the small size of a Wikipedia database. :-)
> Push it in and it will pop out (beware it will *really* pop sometimes)
>> - the buttons on the on screen keyboard is a bit small for my fingers
>> (it is easy to press the character left or right of the one I want). I
>> don't know how to solve this yet.
> Software. If you've used an iPhone, the keypad is 70% of WikiReader's
> size. And typing is a lot better. So just bear with us. We're working
> on this big time.
>> - sometimes, the history screen is unresponsible, I have to press the
>> other two buttons a couple of times before I can select anything on the
>> history screen
> Working on this, too...
>> small annoyances:
>> - the moment it takes to display an article (after selecting it, either
>> from the search screen or from a link) is just long enough that the
>> device feels a bit slow sometimes.
> Same as my last comment :)
>> Some things I haven't figured out yet:
>> - how do I get another Wikipedia (for example the Norwegian one) onto a
>> MicroSD card?
>> - how do I convert an e-book and put it onto a microSD card for the
>> device?
> Like David said, we encourage you to check out for
> now.
>> All in all - I really like this device.
> Great. We love to hear this!
>   -Sean
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