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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

I am planning to buy the Kindle 3 but there is something that is restraining me and it's the dictionary feature: isn't it a bit slow to look up words by moving the cursor with the 5-way controller until you get to the word? I know I am going to make a lot of use of this feature since I am not a native speaker of English. The thing is I don't know if it becomes tiring to use after a while. I believe Sony Readers are better for this thanks to their touchscreens but they are way too expensive. So, what's your opinion on the dictionary feature (leaving aside the quality of the dictionaries which I know I can improve by buying better ones)?

Thank you very much.
 

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I'm curious too for my DD, who has language/reading issues.

I know that on the iPad it is easy because of the touch screen, but i forget it being a feature too until I accidentally highlight a word when turning the page. I hope it is easy enough that my daughter will actually use it for words she doesn't know.

BUT, in the case of accidentally highlighting, I'm still trying to figure out why "Old" gave me the definition for "Ole" this weekend (on the iPad kindle app).

And I'd like to compliment you buy saying, you don't write like a non-native speaker, I would never have guessed! (you do take that as a compliment right?)
 

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I find the dictionary feature on the Kindle to be very easy to use.  I also have a Nook and in order to look up a word, it takes several steps and takes you totally out of your book!

With the Kindle, all you do is move the cursor up next to the word you want the description of, a brief description comes up either at the top or bottom of your page.  You can look at that, then just continue on in your reading.  Or if you want a much longer, more detailed description you can click the little arrow pointer and it opens another page with more information.

Anyway, I think the dictionary feature is super easy to use.  I can't imagine it would be tiring.
 

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I must agree with the previous poster and, since I'm not native English speaker either, I use the feature now and then. After a while it takes no more than few seconds to get to the word.
The only way to make it easier would be to have a touchscreen feature to tap a fingertip on the word in question - but imagine how confusing it could get ;)
 

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Hi Everynow,

I'm not a native English speaker either, and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the dictionary feature! I don't need to use it often enough for the 5 way controller to annoy me, but I can see how that could become a problem if you need to use it multiple times on the same page. My dad's English is more limited, and although he loves the Kindle, he does not like the dictionary, and asked for a netbook instead. I didn't quite understand the reason for it, perhaphs it is because of the controller.  He never complained about the controller, he complained about the dictionary itself. When I questioned him further, his reason became the lack of color because he reads books with charts and graphs. So I'm not sure if there is a legitimate issue with the dictionary, I suspect he just wants a laptop.
I also read on the PC sometimes, and Kindle for PC let's you highlight a word and the definition pops up on the screen. I didn't like that implementation any better than the Kindle. Instead of the definition on the top or bottom of the page, it shows a popover, which I find more annoying, but either way works for me.

You can try the Kindle at a local store, or return it to Amazon in 30 days if it doesn't work out. It would be good if you could find some place that lets you try the Sony too, for comparison. I don't know anything about it, so I can't comment on that device.

By the way, today's woot has the Kindle 2G (refurbished) for $89.99 if money is really tight. But I would not recommend it because you cannot return it to Woot, and because the Kindle 3 has a MUCH better screen. But the Kindle 2 did have an easier to use 5 way controller.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you very very much for your answers! I think I am then going to get a Kindle  :) I'll let you know my opinion once I have it in my hands.

By the way, thank you for your compliments, Tracey. I really appreciate it.

 

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Love the dictionary feature, it is one of the main reasons I don't want to read DTB's anymore.  It is extremely easy and fast to use IMO, at the most it takes me 30 seconds to move the cursor in front of the word. 

Now the Nook on the other hand, it seemed like it took me forever to look up a word on it, which is one of the reasons my Nook was given away.
 

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I like it a lot.

It could be faster though.  It doesn't take all that long to move a cursor up to a word and get the short pop up (though I still like touch screens for just being able to touch the word instantly).  But there's still an annoying delay when pressing the enter button to get the full dictionary entry to pop up.  But the speed has came along way since the Kindle 1, so I'm sure it will continue to get better as newer models with faster processors etc. come out.
 

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Don't forget that if the word is in the top half of the screen, you can start the look-up by pressing down on the 5-way controller and the cursor will start moving down from the top. If the word is in the bottom half of the screen, start by pressing UP on the 5-way, and the cursor will start moving up from the bottom. It's pretty quick.
 

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I use the dictionary quite often, especially when I'm proofreading a book on the Kindle. I think it's great!

One tip is that you can hold down the 5-way controller directional button to move the cursor quickly. You don't need to click-click-click individually to get to the word.

I hope you enjoy your new Kindle, everynow! I use mine much more than I thought I would.
 

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The dictionary is one of my very favorite things on my Kindle.  It's easy to use, and actually quite fast.  My Nook Classic not only takes tons of steps with a sometimes unresponsive touch screen, but the dictionary is actually very poor for my use.  I read a lot of historic fiction and most of the words I look up on the Nook aren't even in there.  Quite maddening after you've gone through all the steps.  You cannot download a better dictionary that will work with it.  And footnotes -- that's another feature that Kindle does perfectly.
 

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I also love the dictionary. It was cumbersome to use on my K1, since you would have to look up words an entire line at a time (so it was much slower at displaying definitions). I actually have a French/English dictionary on my Kindle, which I activate before reading some books written in French. That way, I can look up words I'm not familiar with.
 

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I find the dictionary feature incredibly convenient when reading....and will check full description of a word even though the meaning can be deduced from context.  I also reach for my Kindle rather than a bulky DT dictionary.

 

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I am a native English speaker, and I find myself using the dictionary often, especially in books by modern American authors (usually indies) who are inclined to use vernacular words. For this I am thankful that the Oxford American dictionary is loaded by default.

One gets used to the scrolling and what is useful is that the cursor can also scroll up from the bottom of the page.

On reading a paperback using rather dated English recently, I actually wished I had the dictionary feature available :D
 

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Eltanin Publishing said:
Don't forget that if the word is in the top half of the screen, you can start the look-up by pressing down on the 5-way controller and the cursor will start moving down from the top. If the word is in the bottom half of the screen, start by pressing UP on the 5-way, and the cursor will start moving up from the bottom. It's pretty quick.
I love the dictionary, and it's quick to use. I'm not a native English speaker myself. I wouldn't swap my Kindle for a touch-screen ever! If you compare the screen on my Kindle with my friend's iPad you see why. Talk about messy and dirty screen because of all the touching! *yukk..* The 5-way button is a bit clumsy, but my screen is always clean and easy to read! ;D
 
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