Just got in from getting a kindle etched down at adafruit and I wanted to relate the experience to you all. It’s probably the funkiest thing I’ve done in a while.
photos courtesy of adafruit, full set here
I had some trepidation going into this. On some level I was worried that it was just a little too tooly. I even took the step of writing Molly and Kelly on Gadgettes, asking their opinion and may have given them a new segment in the process (the gadget version of Dear Abby). But in my heart of hearts I knew that the pristine Aluminum had to be customized.
At first I considered getting this side intentionally left blank on it, harkening back to the days of paper computer manuals but then it occurred to me that no one gets that joke on the back of my business cards so maybe 10 people would understand it.
Then I thought of hitchhiker’s and thought the logo would be perfect. Seeing xkcd had the same idea almost put me off, I didn’t want to seem derivative. At the end of the day I realized that “Don’t Panic” made more sense and was the way to go.
I have to admit to some nervousness since the metal on the back of the kindle feels much lighter then the metal on the back of an ipod or on a laptop, but to the victor goes the spoils so I figure what the heck, I’ll go for it. I also have to admit that watching smoke come off the kindle as the laser was etching it made me think that the magic smoke might have been escaping the unit. I’m happy to say that wasn’t the case.
Now, technically speaking I’m not sure this was an etching. As I mentioned earlier the Aluminum is thin, real thing. There’s a layer of thick plastic underneath it (I suspect that the exposed plastic from the antenna goes all the way down the unit). The laser actually burned away the layer of metal giving it a rather cool appearance.
Here’s the video of the kindle being etched.
I do want to thank everyone at adafruit industries
Edit: if you're interested in reading some public domain books on your kindle you should check out the Kindle Book Club