I tried out Kindle Cloud Reader and holy shit, I feel like Mosaic was just invented and now we have <IMAGE> tags. (Do some of our readers even know what Mosaic is these days? Well, it was really cool at the time. Revolutionary even.)
Or rather, that someone finally figured out how to use the image tag. HTML 5 has been out for some time, but everyone else seems to have been asleep at the wheel.
Earlier this week MG Siegler wrote a post about Amazon’s new reader, but he didn’t point out what an amazing technical advancement this is for all of us. To me, it hardly matters that it looks great on my iPad. The coolest part is that it works beautifully OFFLINE.
Gmail and a few other sites have creaky offline modes, but they aren’t nearly as cool as what Amazon has done. (For instance, Gmail doesn’t even have an offline Outbox.) What Amazon has built is a sneak peek at our Internet future and this will change everything.
Try it yourself: Start reading a book on Cloud Reader after clicking on the nifty pop-ups (see below). Now go offline, reboot Safari, go to https://read.amazon.com, and sure enough, without any connection at all, you’ll be able to retrieve your books from exactly where you left off. Every other web site in the world, even Gmail, throws up an ugly error when you try this.
Just imagine a world without ever seeing the “no connection” page on a favorite site ever again. I have to believe that the unemployment rate for programmers is about to go even lower.