The cover flow idea just doesn't work on that small a screen. Turning pages is faster with hardware buttons than with the screen.
Newspaper/magazine reading needs major work, partly as a result of the LCD screen issues, but also a matter of the way they are formatted. The localized sections of the Washington Post don't get distributed. Nor does the Magazine. And no comics! That's a real deal killer. The Nook (and Kindle, etc.) have great potential as newspaper readers. But they are, for now, not usable in that role. Think of the printing and distribution money that could be saved if every Dead Tree Edition reader was replaced with a Nook/Kindle reader.
As a book reader it's pretty good. I carry mine almost everywhere with me, and have now read several books on it. Very readable, even in low light, and goes days without a recharge (if you don't turn on the cell phone or wifi). Reading The Hunt For Red October now. Main problems with books on the Nook: Footnotes and endnotes aren't navigable. They display, but you can't navigate between them. Forget about indexes. Pictures need to be specially formatted, and most publishers seem not to have bothered. All the maps in LoTR were about an inch on a side. The family trees in the appendices, oddly, showed up well, as did the tables displaying the Elvish and Dwarvish character sets.
I'd like to find a good epub editor so that I could stitch together several short stories from Gutenberg into one book. Maybe I'll just take a close look at the spec and work from there.
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