The "PocketBook Free" project was found to achieve two main goals: to support the developement of very interesting and unique technology of electronic books (if you are not familiar with this technology, you can find a description below) and to let everyone participate in developement of applications for e-books. We do not intended creating a completely open platform. It is a matter of politics and more politics could lead to less efficiency.
Cooperation of the open project with a definite e-books producer can give great benifits for both of the goals. It is obvious that the producer is interested in technology developement and developers can achive better results in cooperation with the producer. Speaking about the other goal, it is very important to make the developement easier and so make easier the using of electronic books. This is also a common benefit for the producer and the project.
TFT and CRT, the most widely used kinds of displays are hard on the human eyes because they form image by emmitting light directly into the eyes. But human sight is better adapted to the reflected light which is more soft. So reading from traditional displays can lead to negative effects, such as tiredness and eyestrain.
The electronic paper reflects light just like normal paper (it does not use backlight). Compared to old non-backlight displays the electronic paper has the same contrast as an ordinary paper and makes reading absolutely comfortable.
The electronic paper still has some disadvantages: it supports only black-white imaging and it has pretty low update speed. But these problems are not critical if you use electronic paper for reading: the most of books are black-white, and update time is still less than a time you use to turn a page. So the advantages of the electronic paper are definitely more important than disadvantages. If you read just several pages from electronic paper, you will never like to read from a monitor again.