Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The $8,000 Kindle Book

So you just bought your Kindle 2 and you're looking for a book that will help you get to the heart of ternary alloy systems--you know, phase diagrams, crystallographic data, the whole enchilada. Well thanks to the folks at Materials Science International Team, you can be reading the 500-page "Selected Nuclear Materials and Engineering Systems (Part 4)" on your Kindle in a minute for just $6,431.20--and that's a whopping 20% off the list price of $8,039. (Full disclosure: I will make over $250 if you buy this book through the above link.)

I suppose in the future it won't be uncommon to see more highly specialized manuals and textbooks for sale at all kinds of prices. Springer, the book's publisher, has seven more books listed in the $5,000 and over range. But the rest of us could buy 640 books at the $9.99 price point, or 18 brand new Kindle 2s!

To be fair, the print edition runs the full $8,039, which is even steeper despite FREE Super Saver Shipping. And even if you bought one of the used copies available for just under five grand, you've still got a three-plus pound book to deal with. It might be worth the extra $1,500 to lighten your load to 10 ounces, especially if you can get the boss to pay for it.

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