Friday, August 30, 2013

New Kobo Tablets, Obama Responds to ABA, Battle of the Bands, and Friday Inspirational Photo

Industry News

Kobo is releasing several new tablets, designed with ebook readers in mind.

From Mashable:

"The new collection of devices, which are scheduled to hit stores on Oct. 16, includes the Kobo Arc 10HD, two Kobo Arc 7 tablets running Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean) and the Kobo Aura with a 6-inch e-ink display.

"Many may say [the] tablet industry is crowded, but until now, no one has developed tablet experience for readers first," a Kobo executive told attendees. "People who download apps on tablets don't read daily, and do so more like once a week. We talked to some of our best customers, and they said tablets are generally multi-purpose first and e-readers second."

"To change this, the Kobo Arc tablets are designed specifically for readers. Instead of bombarding users with emails and notifications, the devices put a hold on distractions that typically prevent peaceful reading."

Last month the American Booksellers Association and others sent a letter to the White House after Obama's televised appearance promoting his economic recovery agenda at an Amazon fulfillment center. They raised issues about Amazon's predatory pricing and fight to avoid sales tax, along with other issues that hurt small businesses. They finally got a response.

From Publishers Weekly:

"In a wordy, form letter, with no mention of Amazon, President Obama replied to Steve Fischer, executive director of the New England Independent Booksellers Association, last weekend. He, or more likely a staffer, used the letter to highlight Obama's commitment to job creation and particularly to helping small businesses, hit hard by the economic recession, grow."

You can view the full letter at Publishers Weekly.

For fun!

Lee at Tossing it Out posted about a Battle of the Bands that happens every Friday, pitting two versions of song against each other.

My entry is Mama Weer All Crazee Now. It was originally recorded by Slade from the UK in 1972, it was later redone by two bands in 1984.

The first version came from the Irish band Mama's Boys. They never made it big in the US (although I have a couple of their albums and they're great) but they did an excellent cover of the song, incorporating both story and performance into the video. The actual song begins around the 1:20 mark:

Sadly, that version enjoyed only a month of air time before a bigger band with a bigger label muscled it off MTV. I couldn't find the original music video, but this is the song:

Yes, it's obvious which one I favor, but which one do you prefer?

And your Friday inspirational photo, which is available for purchase at my SITE:


  1. Hi
    Was that photo taken from a plane? It's so lovely, Diane.

  2. I have yet to buy a tablet, but I do use my phone as an e-reader. You can configure the push notifications, so I have them all turned off or set to just badges. The only thing that interrupts my reading time on my phone is phone calls, which I guess is supposedly the primary function of my phone...

  3. Not familiar with the song nor Mama's Boys. The two versions are very similar. The Quiet Riot version has a fuller sound and better production values perhaps, but I prefer the Mama's Boys version. The latter flows with better pacing and I prefer their vocals.

    Good picks.

    Tossing It Out

  4. Never liked Quiet Riot - Mama's Boys gets my vote.
    Awesome photo! Looks like cotton candy.

  5. Love, love, love that photograph!


    I'm not good naming groups or songs, but I do love music, my hubby, he knows so much about music it amazes me. He could win name that tune or any quiz about any music trivia you have. Amazing!

  6. My vote goes to Mama's Boys.

  7. Well, that photo is so beautiful!

    As to the bands, I'm not sure which I'd prefer. Have to listen more.

  8. I liked Lee's comment best about the BOTB. The versions sounded very similar to me. As Lee indicated, the biggest difference was that the QR version sounded fuller. The lead singer also changed some things up with the words and melody line, like veering off and hitting the high notes. That was very typical fare for the 80s and a common device. QR's version is longer than the other one; it repeats more, which is another common denominator for all 80s music.

    All of that said, I preferred the voice and the shorter version that Mama's Boys chose. I really don't care for the high pitched squealing that QR chose, though many do.

  9. Karen, yes it was. That was a massive thunderhead we had to fly around when coming back to Raleigh from Oregon.

    Steven, that is what it was designed for!

    As for Mama's Boys, I just like their lead singer's voice so much better.

  10. The photo is amazing. That letter seems to be more for publicity than to reassure those concerned about amazon (visited link to letter).

  11. Gorgeous photo. I take pictures of clouds but don't have any from above them. Nice.

    Don't own a tablet.

    Never heard of the singers. I'm a fan of Elvis. Enough said. :)

  12. WOLFEY ~
    Believe it or not, I watched a lot of MTV from 1982 - '84 and I actually recall seeing that first video (with the distraught mother) on MTV back "in the day".

    To be totally honest, this is the sort of music I stopped liking when I discovered 'The Blues' and also stopped loving the band Thin Lizzy (and others like them).

    I'll vote for the Mama's Boys version but, truthfully, had there never been a Van Halen, neither of those bands would have ever likely existed (at least not in the form as presented here).

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

  13. I like the first one better, but it's not my thing. I'm so not hip when it comes to music. Folk and country do it for me.

    Have a great weekend, Spunk.

  14. I have a Kindle and a tablet, I have done some reading on my tablet but much prefer the Kindle.

    Love your photo - clouds are always fascinating.

  15. Great photo and I too prefer Mama's Boys!
    Quieter reading-lol I want that....
    Seems like my Kindle sound be called
    Quiet Riot-lol

    Have a happy, safe weekend!

    Off to check Arlee's post :D

  16. Sheena-kay, I agree!

    Beverly, nothing wrong with that.

    Stephen, if Quiet Riot had never existed, I would've been okay with that.

    Ella - LOL!

  17. Interesting news lineup. Beautifully gorgeous picture! Writer’s Mark

  18. Mama's Boys -- never heard of them, but they've got some skillz. The Kobo tablet sounds interesting. I like Gizmo (my '09 Kindle) because he's a dedicated eReader. No distractions whatsoever.

  19. Wonderful pic!!!
    That's interesting to know about Kobo.
    I prefer the Mama's Boys version now too . . .although I had never heard it before, and I had heard Quiet Riot. Mama's Boys definitely played that song best!

  20. I decided to play along in the BOTB fun. Hope you drop in and vote:)

  21. Hey Diane,

    I hate that song! Cheesy and tacky. If Lee would post up something better than that, I might drop by and increase his hit count.

    No doubt he'll have something done by the band, "ABC" at some point.

    Nice photo and very much up in the air.

    Gary, who wishes you a peaceful "Labour" Day.

  22. Other than having a heck of a time getting my Kindle to charge (design flaw-- went through three and now my warranty is past), I love it.

    The photo is lovely!

  23. In tomorrow's (9/2) post, I'm nominating you for two awards. :) Writer’s Mark

  24. I don't have a tablet/e-reader. With all this choice, I'm sure many are going to fall by the wayside until there are just one or two that everyone will use. (Speaking as someone whose family bought a Betamax VCR just before VHS became the norm).

  25. What a great photo! It's beautiful.
    I'm over from the in your pants blogfest. I'll check back later for your post. :)

  26. Hi Diane .. interesting about the Kobo - I haven't ever seen one - and finding out whether the reader experience is better will be enlightening ... there is so much interruption around.

    Love the photo - sadly I love music, but know practically nothing about it .. Cheers Hilary

  27. I love the photo, but didn't like either version of the song.

  28. I missed that televised appearance at an Amazon fulfillment center and if I'd read about it on Facebook probably would've thought it was a joke. Clearly Obama doesn't realize the high emotions involving Amazon's success at putting small bookstores, okay pretty much any bookstore, out of business.

  29. I like the video in the Mama's Boys! It's hilarious! Not sure which version I like better, though.