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The Kindle Fire: A Must-Have for College Students

09/27/2012 03:03 pm 15:03:31 | Updated Nov 27, 2012

I was one of those. One of those persistent fellows who clung to the flipping of pages and claimed the new book smell to be one of the best aromas in the world. I could not let go of my books and scoffed at the incoming of digital text. Of e-readers and e-books, of Nooks and Kindles.

I was scared, quite frankly. Scared of a world without books, without libraries, without my bookshelves. All of pages and bookmarks gone, instead consumed within the tiny confines of digital tablets.

I was stubborn. And if it weren't for my sister's lovely Christmas gift, I would still be trapped by my old-world views instead of enjoying a life of convenience. She gave me a Kindle Fire that Christmas. And for about a month, it just sat on my coffee table, unless some game or app perked my interest. (I didn't even have a smartphone at the time, so apps were like novel gems.) It wasn't until I was about to start spring semester that I had considered putting the device to more use. It was time for schoolbook bargain hunting; and my back ached at the thought of carrying schoolbooks along with notebooks, planners and my MacBook. It was that moment of need that tuned me into the electronic age and unleashed all of the power and benefits the Kindle Fire held.

Amongst its uses, the Kindle Fire saved me...

1. Money: e-books are way cheaper, the cheapest ranging $2 to $3. New releases are more expensive, but still at least $5 less than their paperback and hardcover counterparts. But best of all, classics are free! I read all of the required texts for my Shakespeare course on my kindle, without spending a cent, saving me about $40 that semester.

2. Space: Using my Kindle to buy my schoolbooks meant that on those days where I had multiple lectures and class meetings, I didn't have to carry a suitcase full of books.

The Kindle Fire gave me access to...

3. Internet& Apps: Which meant that I didn't have to lug my laptop around, all of the time. The Kindle Fire is super light. You almost don't feel it within your bag.

4. Easy Purchases: You can buy books in an instant. And it is automatically stored on your kindle. So no more last-minute runs to the bookstore or searches through stacks upon stacks of titles, saving you time for homework.

5. Magazines: Not only can you buy books, but the Kindle Newsstand lets you buy and store countless magazines and newspapers as well.

But the Kindle Fire isn't perfect; nothing in this world is. And the one major downside I have found, especially for college students, is its use of locations instead of page numbers. Many of my professors have allowed me to cite using the odd Kindle locations, which can go up to the tens of thousands. But if your professor favors traditional page numbers, then you're in trouble, unless you...

A. Lie
B. Find a friend with the book
C. Do some math

When you Google conversion techniques, all of the responses come down to basic algebra, finding the total page count of the original book and setting it up proportionally to the Kindle locations. It would look a little like this:

Page Number                    Kindle Location
__________        =        ______________

Total # of Pages            Total # of Kindle Locations

Cross multiply and all that jazz, and you would get at least an approximate guesstimation. For me, it's too much work for an unsure answer. Simply speak to your professors. They probably have Kindles of their own and understand your troubles.

Before, I thought the e-reader generation would lose its appreciation for books. But in fact, the Kindle Fire has brought more books into my life. And I should have known, for to kindle is to light a fire. And that's exactly what the Kindle Fire does; it sparks an intellectual curiosity and a growth of reading in all of its users.

The Kindle Fire is truly amazing; I wrote this entire article on it.