Today in gadgets that you don't really need

  • If you're the kind of person who uses e-readers, you should know that yesterday, Kobo announced a new e-reader.
The new Kobo Forma sports an eight-inch display and weighs about 15 percent less than the Kobo Aura ONE. It might be a little lighter, but there are a lot of similarities between the Forma and Aura ONE. Like the Aura ONE, the Forma meets IPX8 standards — meaning it can be submerged for up to 60 minutes in up to six feet of water — uses the ComfortLight PRO system, which adjusts blue-light exposure throughout the day, and has a storage capacity of 8GB.
  • But really, you probably don't need an e-reader. I bought an e-reader from Sony years ago, and I barely used the thing after the initial thrill wore off. I've since read dozens of ebooks on my phone. People claim that phones are bad for e-reading because they have so many distractions on them, but in my experience, I've found that if the books are interesting enough they'll distract you from the distractions.

  • Speaking of distractions, some folks are crowdsourcing a laptop with an e-ink screen that doesn't have any other digital distractions. It's called The Traveler, and it's by the people who do the Freewrite digital typewriter.

  • Frankly, my favorite non-distraction digital reader is the Neo AlphaSmart 2, which is a battery-powered device that has absolutely no internet whatsoever. It's not being made anymore, so you have to buy it used.