Sunday, August 9, 2009

Mobile versions of webpages for Kindle web browser - Update2

UPDATED FILE 9/28/10 - Kindle 3 users should see the later article instead.

UPDATED 8/10/09
1:30 AM - Original posting was 4/20/09, 9:55 AM

I've made a separate Kindle file for the bookmarks below, which you can use as a Kindle file made up OF the bookmarks listed -- the websites are linked already in that file so that you can use them for the Web when your Wireless is On.

(Uploaded corrected file replacing wrong file, 8/10/09 at 11:05 AM PDT.
  Update info at bottom of file should say 8/10/09 at 12:33 AM.)

If you're not in email while Kindle-browsing, and the words are too small because the Kindle is showing the full screen, try going to Manu/Settings and changing to "Basic Mode" instead of Advanced or Desktop modes.  That'll make the fonts normal sized and it'll all be more black & white with higher contrast.  See How to use the Kindle web browser tips.

  The exception to Basic Mode mentioned above involves sites needing your Log-in which usually requires "Advanced" or "Desktop" (DX) modes.  For that, go to Menu/Settings/Advanced and make sure that 'javascript' is 'enabled.'   Email-sites require Advanced mode w/Javascript on.
  Otherwise, Basic Mode is faster and in better contrast (more b&w) but you may have to "NextPage" through the website's left-column of links first, if they have one. The text being larger is worth it usually.

FILE for download:
 You can click or right-click here to download mobiweb.azw which you can then transfer to the 'documents' folder of your Kindle, via your USB cable -- or you can email the downloaded file to [you]@kindle.com to have it sent to your Kindle.  Let me know if there are any problems.
  Update:  If you're on this blog page using Amazon's Kindle-subscription edition of this blog, you can download the file direct to the Kindle.  (The live web-browsing version on the Kindle, with rectangle cursor, doesn't allow it for some reason.)

After downloading something to the Kindle, you may have a blank screen.  Just press the "Back" button to get back to where you were earlier.


Original Posting of 4/20/09 The Kindle comes with webpage bookmarks put in place for us by Amazon as part of its "experimental" web browser feature, the use of which is at no cost to us currently (partly because web-browsing on a small vertical screen is less than optimal for the eyes and it's difficult to fit a wide page of several columns in a tiny vertical screen.  However, with the Amazon's ultra-sharp fonts, it's doable and, best, we're able to use this anywhere cell phones can access Sprint, which provides the wireless ("Whispernet") access prepaid by Amazon -- the estimated average Sprint EV-DO wireless costs are factored into the price of the Kindle unit.
  There are no hourly or monthly charges for the user at this point (though Amazon reserves that right), even though cellphone web-data packages are normally a minimum $30/mo. for unlimited access.  So, unlimited cellular data access like this normally costs, at the least, $360 a year.  For now, we do have tjat unlimited use, though most Kindle users would want to use it only for emergencies when outside the home.  It's not speedy.

So, I've used it at restaurants, stores, concert intermissions, whenever I want to look up something.  I used it the other day while waiting for diem sum, to read and post to one of the Amazon forums, and will eventually did put up a couple of photos from that to show what it looked like while posting to the forum via the Kindle.   The keyboard lettering is very pale and you need to do a full key-dip, which means it is slow-going, but it does the job and I'm getting used to the little keyboard.

A friend wrote that she lost most of her Amazon-placed website bookmarks while experimenting the other day, and asked me to give her the Amazon-made bookmarks.  Since she has a Kindle 1 while I have both Kindles, I gave her a list of what was pre-placed by Amazon on both Kindles.  The Kindle 2 handles the web far better than the K1 does, though.  By default it tends to present the full width of a regular Internet page, with words very small but also very sharply presented.  To get the data in normal larger text instead, we can switch from the automated "Advanced" mode to "Basic" mode (via settings-menu while web-browsing), which means, then, paging through left column data first and then arriving at the middle data columns readable in normal-sized fonts. We can also 'disable images' to just get the text much faster if in a hurry for basic info and not images.

Mobile versions of webpages, however, are programmed to fit on mobile phones with their small screens and so they're very good for the Kindle.

Here are the basic bookmarks put on by Amazon, followed by links to excellent and fairly extensive lists of mobile-versions of popular sites.  You won't need to type any of this list if you downloaded mobiweb.azw.

* You NEVER need to type in the "http://" portion for Kindle bookmarks. The Kindle will add that. *

LIST (This is in the file you can download for your Kindle.)
First, AMAZON-placed bookmarks (mostly) from Kindle 1 and 2:
Amazon.com - http://www.amazon.com
Wikipedia - http://wikipedia.org
GMail Mobile – INBOX ONLY, text focus
http://m.gmail.com
Gmail Mobile – FOLDERS ALSO, Slower, many boxes
http://gmail.com
Google - http://www.google.com/pda
Google Mobile products – http://m.google.com/?hl-en
- (Don’t use Mobile Products ‘gmail’ option. See above instead.)
BBC News - http://news.bbc.co.uk/text-only.htm
CNET - http://m.news.com
CNN - http://m.cnn.com
ESPN - http://mobileapp.espn.go.com
MSN MOney - http://mny.mobile.msn.com/en-us
MSNBC - http://www.msnbc.msn.com
AllRecipes - http://mobile.allrecipes.com
E! Online - http://eonline.mobi/topstory.ftl
Fandango - http://mobile.fandango.com
National Weather Service - http://mobile.srh.weather.gov
    The following were possibly put there by me:
Lonely Planet - http://m.lonelyplanet.com
Yahoo! - http://us.m.yahoo.com
Yelp - http://mobile.yelp.com

WEB ON YOUR CELL (I use this a lot.)
http://webonyourcell.com
  (WebOnYourCell is excellent - added 8/8/09, 11:58 PM)

SKWEEZER.COM (Terrific)
http://www.skweezer.com
  This *squeezes* your chosen sites for mobile/Kindle use.

NOTE: If you have the file listing that shows "www.squeezer.com"
  please re-download the file, as it should be "www.skweezer.com"
  and the file has been corrected.  Apologies.

CANTONI MOBILE BOOKMARKS:
http://cantoni.mobi/

TOP MOBILE WEBSITES - Excellent recommendations here
  Press Menu/ *Click on “Use Basic Mode” for this.*
http://tinyurl.com/topmobilesites
( Easier to type than http://webtrends.about.com/od/mobileweb20/tp/Top-Mobile-Websites-.htm )

Amazon asks for feedback on how the experimental basic-web feature works for us.   Send them feedback at kindle-feedback@amazon.com or to
kindledx-feedback@amazon.com

Please feel free to add to the Comments area any useful mobile-formatted pages you like that are not on Amazon's, Cantoni's, or Webtrends' lists.  There's a delay in posting comments, and I'll try out any recommended links first.  Thanks!

Last update for List - 8/10/08 - 12:33 AM
Last update for blog entry - 8/10/08 - 1:30 AM




Kindle Touch 3G   Kindle Touch WiFi   Kindle Basic   (UK: KBasic)   Kindle Fire
Kindle Keybd 3G   (UK: Kindle Keybd 3G)   K3 Special Offers   K3-3G Special Offers   DX

Check often: Temporarily-free recently published ones
  Guide to finding Free Kindle books and Sources.  Top 100 free bestsellers.  Liked-books under $1
UK-Only: recently published free books, bestsellers, or £5 Max ones
    Also, UK customers should see the UK store's Top 100 free bestsellers.

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29 comments:

  1. Thank you for all of those links. I have now bookmared them all and am excited to use them on the go!

    ReplyDelete
  2. pati,
    Glad you have those on. If you have any problems, let me know. Also, see my tips on web-browsing at http://xrl.us/kindleweb

    ReplyDelete
  3. You're download isn't working for me, any one else having problems?

    ReplyDelete
  4. Anonymous,
    Are you on the computer when you try to download? Or are you on the Kindle when you try?

    Let me know what browser you're using too. Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Is it free to surf the web if I am traveling internationally with my Kindle. I know there is an extra $2 surcharge for downloading a book while outside the US. But will I be charged if I just wanted to check my email?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Anonymous,
    Jennifer, a U.S. Kindle owner wrote from Germany that she can web browse there as a U.S. resident abroad. I don't know if that's intended, but she can do it and logged into facebook. Easiest is http://m.facebook.com .

    No charges reported yet.

    ReplyDelete
  7. andrys:
    I have a new Kindle 2, with ver2.3 and have downloaded you file to the documents folder. however, I am unable to see how to access it. can you steer me to that?
    mike

    ReplyDelete
  8. Anonymous,
    It'll appear in the Home screen listing of 'books' under the name 'mobiweb' -- you can just click to open it.

    If you're sorting by Title, then press 'm' and click after that and you'll be at the 'm' portion of the books.

    If you're sorting by Most Recent, it should be near the top of the Home screen.

    Hope that works.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Thanks..it wouldn't pull up till i did a search for it! Thanks again

    mike

    ReplyDelete
  10. Anonymous, thanks for reporting back. Be sure to read the blog entry before that about the basic organization of the Kindle.

    If you sort it by Title (and choose All items) then just typing an 'm' and clicking on the 5-way button would take you to the m's and you'd press NextPage to see the rest of the m's.

    Then you can change your Sort back to Most Recent if that's what you prefer -- I prefer that, in any case.

    ReplyDelete
  11. mike,
    I missed your bottom signature. Sorry to keep referring to you as 'anonymous' :-)

    ReplyDelete
  12. As a kindle newbie I have found all of this incredibly useful and am sharing it with friends who already had kindles but were not using them for anything but reading - thank you so much for this!

    Dee Martin
    http://www.delenemartin.com

    ReplyDelete
  13. Dee,
    I'll be updating this file soon as I found some other good mobile-device oriented sites.

    Thanks for taking the time to let me know you're finding the page useful. The web browser requires patience but for on-the-spot brief searches for needed info, the price is right :-)

    ReplyDelete
  14. I'm also a new user - and wanted to know if there's a way to share books from one Amazon account via any way ie save azw files onto a usb cable? Does anyone know how?

    ReplyDelete
  15. Anonymous,
    No, the publishers don't want their books to be quite that easily shared. The Big 5 publishers have already raised prices of new e-books quite a bit and are making them the same price at all bookstores, with no sales possible.

    But Amazon has a feature whereby you can put someone else on your account (that person can see your other books and can usually buy a book - though your own card would be charged, so you'd have to trust the person).

    There is no need for the other person to have a Kindle because s/he can use an iPod, iPad, iPhone, Blackberry, Kindle for PC (free), or Kindle for Mac (free) to read a Kindle book.

    You can share a book (that can be read concurrently) with UP TO 5 other Kindle-compatible devices on your account, depending on what the publisher allows.

    Some friends and family share book costs that way.

    Moving a book via usb cable won't work, because each Amazon book has a field that keys the ebook to a specific device given a number by Amazon.
    If you have a friend with an iPhone which you want to put on your account, then the COPY of the e-book that is sendable to your friend's iPhone (the iPhone would be registered on your account with the specific ID number) would have a number in the e-book that identifies it as working with that particular device only.

    The latter is handled via your ManageYourKindle page which would display that iPhone as one of the devices under your account. I think that normally the idea is that it's considered your device for the account-sharing purposes.

    ReplyDelete
  16. I receive an "unexpected error message when attempting to open a book. How do I fix this? Thank you

    ReplyDelete
  17. Anonymous,
    Where did the book come from? Amazon? Feedbooks? Project Gutenberg? Mobi Pocket?

    What happened after the error? Could you close the book? Did the Kindle reboot? If so, did the Home menu still show the book?

    Could you try to open the book again? Did it fail again on a 2nd try?

    If so, it might have been a corrupted download.

    If so, then you need to delete the book.
    Two ways to try:

    The usual way. Put your cursor on it and press the 5-way button to the left to delete it. It'll ask if you're sure (something like that).

    If the delete fails and there's a freeze from trying, then Restart the Kindle with the 17-20 second hold of the power slider. Go away for a few minutes - it'll start cleaning up everything and starting fresh. After you get back it should have started up to a normal state.

    Hook it up to your computer with the USB cable that's part of the power cord.

    Use your file manager (Explorer for a PC and Finder for a Mac) and just delete the Kindle book on the Kindle drive -- which will have a designated drive letter usually). The books are held in the Kindles "documents" folder.

    Go to that folder and delete the file and any associated small file with the same name (different extension).

    Then you should be fine. Some people have been able to re-download the book from wherever they got it and the new download will work fine.

    Sometimes a book being stored on a book site actually has a problem. At that point I go look for another source for the book...

    Hope that helps !

    - Andrys

    ReplyDelete
  18. Hello! Thank you for all the information you have provided, your site is very interesting and helpful. Is there documentation on how you created the .azw web browser bookmark file? I would love to be able to rearrange and edit my Kindle bookmarks without having to manually delete and re-add them all!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Cas,
    Thanks for the nice feedback.

    Re the bookmark file, I just typed it into Microsoft Word and then I sent it to me at [me]@free.kindle.com for Amazon to Convert and to send me a link to download the converted file on the computer

    You have to 'approve' this address for sending Kindle things and you do that at Amazon's Manage Your Kindle page.

    On the computer I clicked on the link and it opened up my Kindle for PC (you can get this or the Mac one for free) so I could read it and it looked fine.

    Then I tried a copy on the Kindle and kept on on a server where people could download it.

    Hope that helps...

    ReplyDelete
  20. Cool, thanks Andrys! I didn't realize it could automatically detect URLs from text documents. Finding out new things about the Kindle every day, fun stuff. I didn't realize how customizable it could be.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Cas,
    Amazon's conversion process detects the URLs in Microsoft WORD docs and converts them for us.

    Stuff like that never getgs printed in the newspaper or gadget columns. Most think that people can do only one thing - buy books only from Amazon and then read only those books, etc. Some have written we can't put our own documents on it.

    Sometimes I just highlight, copy and paste web text I want, into Word and then have it converted to look the same way and it's a good way to read articles on your Kindle. There are also places like Readability and Instapaper that automate such things, but this lets me control more just what I want and we can make things look the way we want in Word and most of that is kept pretty well.

    The Kindle's amazing in what it does and lets us do.. Have fun making your link-books!

    ReplyDelete
  22. Hi, love this site!. I want to know if there is a way to remove books that I've read from the home page to a "read" file, so I can keep track.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Anonymous,
    Thanks. Yes you flick your 5-way button to the left and confirm you want to 'delete' the book.

    If it's an Amazon-bought or Amazon-received Kindle book, then it is saved on their servers and you can re-download it at any time.

    I often like to back them up to my computer nevertheless in case the publisher ever withdraws the book from Amazon.

    The book then is seen in your "Archived Items" which means the book is kept at Amazon for future download by you along with notes and highlighting if you approved backups of those (the default). To get the book again later, you just click on the title in the Archived Items section.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Hi Andrys. I am a blog subscriber and tried to download the mobi azw files but still getting a message that the page is not supported. I have Kindle 3G. Should it be working now? Thanks

    Michelle

    ReplyDelete
  25. Michelle,
    That was my mistake, so thanks for writing. It was calling for a new window which it shouldn't for a download, as it should stay in the same window while a download box comes up. I've put thru' a change that should fix this for the future but it'll take 2 hours or so to go through.

    In the meantime try this (and remember, a much less confusing bookmarks file will be ready later this week).

    1. Press HOME to get to the home page.
    2. Start to type and a box will open up.
    -- Type:
    bit.ly/kmobiweb
    (don't click on anything)

    and then .... 5-way to the right until you see "go to" as an option.
    4. Click on that.

    That should start the download. I was able to get it.

    Thanks very much for letting me know.

    ReplyDelete
  26. How do you change the mobile version in your phones browser to real computer version?

    ReplyDelete
  27. Silver,
    A lot of phones use a browser that automatically goes to the mobile version of a page and don't offer manual overrides.

    But some mobile pages have, at the bottom, links you can click to see the 'full' or regular version.

    ReplyDelete
  28. there is a website kinstart.com where u can browse mobile version of any web site.(mainly webpage formatted for mobile viewing by google).it works pretty good

    ReplyDelete

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