Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Game of Thrones Kindle Screensavers

I saw something on Reddit that I thought was worth sharing. Someone took the house sigils that HBO had made for some of the great houses of Westeros from the Song of Ice and Fire novels and the Game of Thrones TV show and made black and white versions of them scaled for use as Kindle screensavers. I modified them with GIMP to be black logos on a grey field, instead of the original reverse.

If you haven't already jailbroken/rooted your e-ink Kindle reader running the 2.x or 3.x firmware and applied the custom screensaver hack you can do so within about 10 minutes by following the instructions on the MobileRead wiki. Just so. You'll need to reboot your Kindle a couple of times, and that's the slowest part of the whole process. Actually reading the instructions is probably quicker. This is an easy way to banish Emily Dickinson from your Kindle so you never need to see her face again. Of course, these images can also be used on a Nook or other e-ink reader that lets you load your own images for use as screensavers.

Instead of having to look at certain ugly dead authors, you can go load up a bunch of actually cool screensavers. You can use book covers or artwork from a bunch of sites that collect Kindle screensavers. I've got a Hitchhiker's Guide "Don't Panic!" screensaver in addition to my Game of Thrones ones installed. Since the Kindle Keyboard with its unrestricted 3G web access is the closest thing to a Hitchhiker's Guide we've got, it seems appropriate.

I've heard the Kindle Touch 3G has a restricted 3G connection that won't let you browse general web sites. That's too bad, and it seems the Kindle Keyboard 3G will eventually cease production and go out of stock, so the ability to use a Kindle with 3G as a free (after the initial expense) web browsing device is a thing of the past. If I had to replace mine and couldn't get another Keyboard model with 3G, I guess I'd just get that cheap Kindle 4. It wouldn't be as good as the Kindle Keyboard, since it has less storage and a weaker battery and no audiobook capability, but I'd prefer it to getting fingerprints all over my ebook screen like I would with the Kindle Touch.

The Game of Thrones screensavers linked to on the Reddit thread are good as is, but I thought it would make more sense for them to have their colors reversed. That's a quick thing to do in an image editor like GIMP, and the results fit better with how the existing Kindle screensavers look.

Unfortunately there aren't any Martell or Tyrell house sigil screensavers that I could find, and a quick Google image search didn't turn up any images that matched the others in the set. If anyone knows of any, comment and let me know.

Amazon obviously dosen't support this hack, so it might void your warranty. But this is too easy and too cool to pass up. It's certainly more useful than nipples on a breastplate, to use that excessively mentioned phrase from the books.

Just remember to not eat any lemoncakes or especially Frey pies while reading on your Kindle, you wouldn't want to get crumbs everywhere. The North remembers.


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