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There is no guarantee that B&N will stay in business, or that Amazon won't discontinue support for older Kindle files, in the not too distant future. This is something that the hardcore readers cannot help but be aware of, because it has already bitten them in the past, if they bought a Zune, or a Palm Pilot, or any number of other devices.

So true. I'm struggling to keep the books I bought for my Palm Treo alive. I can't read the ebook copies of William Gibson's Neuromancer trilogy because they were done as protected HyperCard stacks. The only reason I buy eBooks right now is that I know I can break the DRM if I need to. (And in fact, breaking the DRM on my Kindle books is what I'm going to do right after I finish reading the rest of this article.
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peter k
though to be perfectly honest, but the time either even happens, i expect there to be a tool to hack the files open.
+James Allen I just found the Calibre plugins, but at first glance it looks like they are Window's-only. Haven't downloaded them yet to see.
+Kee Hinckley Not sure. I used them on my Windows laptop. I am happy to be able to back them up and know I will be able to read the books in the future.
Haven't got the kindle working, although it looks like I can via my iPhone. However I did convert my protected Palm pdb files! (Including a copy of American Gods that I'd recently repurchased.)
(It pays to keep a copy of your old credit card numbers. I needed that to decrypt the pdb files, since they are encrypted with your name and the last 8 digits.)
Amazon won't kill Mobi format until they can do it without pissing off the people who bought the older Kindles that can't handle Kindle Format 5.
As Stross says, the tech is moving too fast to predict what will die. Anyone who bought ebooks from Microsoft is doomed. And for all we know, those readers may all fail with hardware issues in a few years.

Me, I just wonder things like, "How do I give my books to my kids?"

(Of course, in the short term my issue tends to be more, "How do I get my books back from my kids?")
+Peter da Silva - and you can expect that to last just until Amazon feels that enough users have upgraded their Kindles that it's not a big deal to piss them off, probably on or before 2014.
When did Microsoft shut down their servers? 2010?
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