Tip: Obscure way to use the Kindle 3 at the gym

I haven't read books at the gym since I had ereaders because really, I don't get drippy-sweaty but don't want to touch them anyway. I was recently overcome with annoyance that there is no auto page turn on them (for pete's sake, the original Palms had that feature!), so I did a little research, and it turns out that if you have the text-to-speech feature enabled, the pages turn along with it. (This all applies to the Kindle 3; I don't have a way to test with previous models.) Is this documented anywhere obvious? No! I couldn't even find a MENU option labeled "start talking" or anything. So here's how I made it work.

  • Open the book you want to read.
  • Press shift + sym to turn on text to speech
  • Back button turns it off; space pauses

You can press the Aaa button to change the rate of speech and, therefore, the page-turn speed (so you could turn the volume down and just watch), but your options are (a) evilly slow, (b) normal, and (c) so fast the pixels barely have time to darken. I decided to use headphones and listen along, only to find that Amazon stupidly placed the headphone jack on the bottom of the Kindle. Who does that? So I also had to use the rotation button to change the screen orientation (turned out to work well with the machines at my gym because the case I use tented over the book ledge just perfectly, but it's still a stupid design plan).

This isn't a particularly handy tip, but if your objective is to read Kindle books while you're working out, here's now to do it.