Kindle programming (part 1)

I bought an Amazon Kindle 3G back in October. So far I’ve mostly been reading research papers on it (that 3rd gen eInk really is amazing), occasionally proggit.

I applied for SDK access, but heard nothing back. So instead, I’m using the built in “experimental” web browser. It has canvas support, so I’m golden.

Image of Kindle web browser displaying vector fonts.

As you might have noticed, I couldn’t resist the urge to design a vector font for the task; please be gentle, I know the font leaves a lot to be desired, it’s a work in progress. The Kindle browser didn’t seem to have font support anyway, while public domain, I didn’t particularly enjoy the Hershey fonts. The Hershey fonts are nice, but they’reĀ unsuitableĀ for programming.

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  1. Hi Aaron,

    I also applied for Amazon’s KDK program, but never heard a word from them apart from a confirmation email. The Kindle’s a nice toy and I’ve been wanting to hack something for it for a while now.

    Do you know if the kindle’s browser can run content directly from the kindle’s storage? If yes then it would be a substitute for the kdk.


    1. The answer seems to be no, you cannot get the Kindle 3 browser to run content from Kindle storage without custom firmware.

      Wikipedia [here] indicates that the Kindle ebook format uses HTML, so there’s a remote possibility that you could compile a kindle book containing embedded scripts and do something useful; however, you’ll be going through the e-reader application then, not the browser. Even if it worked, there might not exist any workable mechanism for text input.

      For now, I’ve been dropping my app onto my public dropbox folder. I have the url bookmarked on the kindle so it’s easy to refresh. I really wish they would open it up though; e.g. permitting self-contained HTML files to be loaded (using data urls, embedding all necessary scripts, etc.)

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