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Old 02-15-2012, 05:50 PM   #16
QuantumIguana
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What you or I might want isn't very important. If I like a TV show, it is almost certain to be canceled, the market looks at a broader picture than my tastes. I'm not against using a web browser to read books. I am just saying that reading books on the computer is a small part of the e-book market. Reading books on the computer is a supplement to reading on e-readers and tablets.

You can read your Kindle books on the web with Firefox and Chrome. You have to install a browser app, I don't know if your computer policies allow that or not.

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Old 02-15-2012, 05:50 PM   #17
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PDF is only a small percentage of the book market, it is mostly used for technical documents. It is useful for when a page has to look a certain way, but it isn't very good at all for resizing.

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Old 02-15-2012, 05:54 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by anamardoll View Post
*sigh* You simply do not live my life. Smart phones + cloud storage + constant connectivity provide a privacy and immediacy for reading that wasn't there before. You can't load a CD onto a phone, so a CD full of books != useful. You can't load a CD onto a company computer without the contents being scanned, so a CD full of books is STILL not useful.

Most places still allow internet usage, however, and leaving open a browser with a book to glance at during breaks is VERY useful.

But, meh, you know best.
Understand your argument but don't get your point about not being able to load a CD onto phone... I've got 48GB on my phone and have a number of CDs of books, comics, music etc happily loaded...
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Old 02-15-2012, 08:40 PM   #19
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PDF is only a small percentage of the book market, it is mostly used for technical documents. It is useful for when a page has to look a certain way, but it isn't very good at all for resizing.
I think you'll find it's not as small a segment as you might think. Not only do technical people read PDFs, but older PC users are very accustomed to reading PDF books, many before ebooks became popular.

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Old 02-16-2012, 05:16 AM   #20
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People will read articles in their web browser, but few would want to read books in their browsers. E-books have been around for some time, but few wanted to read them until the advent of e-readers, people didn't want to read books on their computer screens.
I was planning on mentioning the add-ons, but from later posts it seems that you are aware of them. So why do you pretend that they don't exist in this post?

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FAIL.

Every single one of those is also on site storage, and not subject to loss of access if there is a problem in another location.
I wasn't saying that the internet is exactly like a book, I was just saying that they are both methods of data distribution. And while loss of access is a problem now in some places, that doesn't happen everywhere, and it doesn't happen if you have 3G. First world countries are moving towards complete coverage anyway.

However you do bring a good point. The reason why browser reading didn't take off in the 90's was probably linked to the limited internet access.
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Old 02-16-2012, 09:35 AM   #21
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I was planning on mentioning the add-ons, but from later posts it seems that you are aware of them. So why do you pretend that they don't exist in this post?
Yeah, I feel like there's a goal-post moving here such that now we're supposedly arguing whether web browser reading will REPLACE e-Readers somehow.

I think people have, will, and continue to read on a wide variety of formats. I do think that browser reading will become more popular in the future for a variety of technical reasons.
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Old 02-16-2012, 10:16 AM   #22
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I do think that browser reading will become more popular in the future for a variety of technical reasons.
One of those reasons will be the incorporation of browsers into more and more devices, from phones to cars.
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Old 02-16-2012, 10:39 AM   #23
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It all comes down to whether ad-supported books becomes a viable option. People are not going to give up their limited screen space on their devices for nothing. Local storage is cheap, and getting cheaper all the time, even the smallest devices can hold many books.
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Old 02-16-2012, 12:31 PM   #24
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Books don't have to be ad-supported to be browser-accessible; they merely have to be paid for (and as I said before, an issue the article really doesn't address).
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Old 02-16-2012, 12:44 PM   #25
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The article does address it:

Quote:
The real question raised by McGuire's argument is whether we continue to value ebooks as books, or as webpages. Books are something we pay for. Webpages are things we read for free. Which model will win out?
Articles on web pages are paid for by advertising. Proposing using the same model for books that is used for articles is to propose that books be ad-supported.

The article is not about web accessibility for books.
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Old 02-16-2012, 12:48 PM   #26
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Not necessarily. If I sell 20 books at $1 in one month, I've made $20. If I put that same book online for "free" but with ads on the page and I make $30 in one month, I've made more with the "free" version of my book than I did with the paid version. I may not have made the same per reader, but that's something that each author will have to deal with on their own terms.

And a lot of those web-readers may buy the paid version so that they can have a nicely-formatted off-line version for their eReader.

None of that presupposes ads IN the book.
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Old 02-16-2012, 01:02 PM   #27
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And a lot of those web-readers may buy the paid version so that they can have a nicely-formatted off-line version for their eReader.
With web comics it's either the print version that you can buy, or make donations to receive a signed poster, or cards, or they sell an unrelated story by the same author. Beside that you have t-shirts, plushies, etc.
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Old 02-16-2012, 01:08 PM   #28
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With web comics it's either the print version that you can buy, or make donations to receive a signed poster, or cards, or they sell an unrelated story by the same author. Beside that you have t-shirts, plushies, etc.
And I WISH the web comics had an ebook version to buy. I can either compile all the free strips manually myself or buy an ebook collection -- I'd rather pay the money. But things like, say, Order of the Stick, don't have ebooks. It's so sad. I have to buy the paper copies and ship them off to 1DollarScan.
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Old 02-16-2012, 01:32 PM   #29
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I have read books on my computer for many many years. I am probably in the minority though. I think the reason it didn’t really take off in the past was the portability issue. Not so easy to drag a workstation around with you. Once laptops finally became smaller, lighter, and had acceptable battery life, I think computer reading picked up somewhat. Then along came netbooks and even more people got it in on it. Now we have a smorgasbord of portable reading devices with lots of local storage.

I personally wouldn’t read an ad-supported ebook myself. I would rather just pay a fair price for the ebook and read it how I want, where I want, when I want, in whatever format I want, on whatever device I want.

For me the huge difference between the web and an ebook is: The web requires connectivity, an ebook does not. I would never purchase an ebook that required a network connect to read, those should be stored locally.

I have seen an attempt at the opposite, the offline Wikipedia device called the WikiReader. To me this was backwards. Content that is ever changing and requires constant updates needs to stay connected. Content that is static (like books) should be stored locally, there is just no reason to require a network connection for static content.

In summary:
Web = dynamic content
ebook = static content
Two different animals.

Last edited by CyGuy; 02-16-2012 at 01:57 PM.
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