Tuesday, April 17, 2012

E-everything


A dear friend pointed out the joys of the new age and its evolving technologies. She was reacting to my last blog post, lamenting a disappearing world, and she made good points.

So what’s with my angst about E-readers? She loves her E-reader, because aside from the obvious ease of lugging around a hundred books in one light electronic package, an E-reader contains a dictionary, (just click on any word) a magnifier, (just click on the size you want your font) and serves as an instant bookstore. (Just click to Amazon or B & N, and voilĂ !)

Of course she’s right. I’m not a complete Luddite. I use Email, and my reference encyclopedia is collecting dusk, because I navigate the Internet. I’m sure I’ll be getting an E-reader any day now. I got advance review copies (=ARC) in E-files of my novel, sent by the publisher, and I can’t read my own E-book except in pdf. That won’t last long. I’ll catch up. I haven’t quit the forward-running human race.

I’m also sure E-books will soon come with an option to lend, (why buy a good book if I can’t lend it?) and some way to gift these files that retain the ‘thingness’ of a present, (an Email with an attached file won’t do it) and so on. We are a race of problem-solvers.

When we solve these problems, and E-reader devices come complimentary with X-number of books purchased, paper books will become relics. Not for a while yet, but sooner than my slow-to-adjust self is ready.

Because the race is on.

6 comments:

  1. I'm waiting for my kids to get me one when they're older ... loaded with all my favorites of course.

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  2. I don't ever want print books to go away. The thought makes me so sad. I think there's room for ebooks and print.

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  3. I am glad to have made such a convincing case! I must add however, that eventhough I love my Kindle, I am an academic librarian and I still send my students to encyclopedias in print, especially in Hebrew (there not many good online options in this language). Some topics such as philosophy and history have excellent entries in the good old encyclopedias and or basic textbooks. I you must never underestimate the power of browsing the stacks!

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    1. And I'm glad you chimed in! :)
      Sadly, wading through the stacks, or even knowing how to, is something I foresee only scholars doing. Maybe even in our lifetime. :(

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  4. I'm not a Luddite at all, but I do NOT want to see print books go. And I just see too many book lovers -- the people who buy books -- feeling the same, so I'm cautiously optimistic that they'll be here for my lifetime.

    I see the advantages of both e- and print reading, and I'd like to have the choice. I admit I haven't yet tried to read many e-novels, but I have noticed this: I cannot sink down into them the way I can a print book. The reading experience on a device is different, as to how one relates to the story, and I think something will be lost when e-versions become the only alternative.

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  5. Many of my friends who are avid readers and I have not yet bought e-readers. I'm getting closer to the decision, though. Maybe because I feel I need to keep up with the industry. My friends feel no such need. They just want a good read, in the format they're used to.

    I do hope that print books will always be around, and not just for scholars and in museums and libraries. I hope both kinds of books can co-exist.

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