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Old 03-18-2008, 06:39 AM   #1
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"Reading things electronically is a dissatisfying experience" - Publisher crying

Will We Need Books In 10 Years?

Many experts have predicted that we will soon be using a portable digital reading device such as Amazon's e-reader, the Kindle - which has been called 'the iPod of reading'. However, Pack isn't one of them.

"Reading things electronically is a dissatisfying experience. And I don't think that will ever completely be cracked by technology."


Link: Sky News

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Old 03-18-2008, 08:59 AM   #2
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Old 03-18-2008, 11:32 AM   #3
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Old 03-18-2008, 11:45 AM   #4
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Well I agree with him that book stores will probably continue to sell mostly pbooks. Who would bother going to a shop for an ebook when they will all be delivered instantly over wireless networks? As for whether physical books will still be in high-demand in 10 years: I expect they will but, in the words of Yogi Berra, it's tough to make predictions, especially about the future.
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Old 03-18-2008, 12:30 PM   #5
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Reading things electronically is a dissatisfying experience. And I don't think that will ever completely be cracked by technology.
There are none so blind as they who will not see.

And they can be really annoying too.
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Old 03-18-2008, 01:50 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by epiphany View Post
Well I agree with him that book stores will probably continue to sell mostly pbooks. ..

I don't think so. E-books are always cheaper than paper books. The price is most important factor for every product.

Last edited by searcher; 03-18-2008 at 01:55 PM.
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Old 03-18-2008, 03:53 PM   #7
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Old 03-18-2008, 03:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by epiphany View Post
Well I agree with him that book stores will probably continue to sell mostly pbooks. Who would bother going to a shop for an ebook when they will all be delivered instantly over wireless networks? As for whether physical books will still be in high-demand in 10 years: I expect they will but, in the words of Yogi Berra, it's tough to make predictions, especially about the future.
I think there will be a lot fewer bookstores. We already see them branching off into a lot more things that just books. If I go into B&N, I see games, stationery, and a cafe. I would say roughly 40% of the square footage of that store is not devoted to reading material.
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Old 03-18-2008, 05:08 PM   #9
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Although I have to agree. We won't go into a pbook store to "downlaod the latest Grisham novel". I rarely go to a pbook store now. If I can't find an ebook version & I just must have it, I order on-line.
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Old 03-18-2008, 06:25 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by searcher View Post
"Reading things electronically is a dissatisfying experience. And I don't think that will ever completely be cracked by technology."
Absurd. When I am reading, the medium appropriately "disappears" and I become engrossed in the content itself.

Granted, there are some types of books that (currently) lend themselves better to paper format, but for most of my fiction/pleasure reading I am very happy with ebooks, and in fact prefer them to paper. Most especially, my 50+ year-old eyes appreciate the ability to use larger fonts -- my paper books don't seem to provide that option

And ebooks are also nice when trying to store a lifetime of paper books in a house with less than infinite shelf space.
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Old 03-18-2008, 07:59 PM   #11
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Old 03-18-2008, 08:05 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by slayda View Post
I rarely go to a pbook store now. If I can't find an ebook version & I just must have it, I order on-line.
I, OTOH, go to the local pbook store at least once a week. It gives me a chance to see what's new and actually look at the book. And, yes, I do buy pbooks, but just nonfiction. Any fiction I want I get in ebook form. (Except, sadly, for those bits of fiction I want that aren't available in ebook form.) I also order online but those tend to be older nonfiction books that are not readily available except online.

I think 10 years from now the role of the pbookstore will depend greatly on the state of ebook devices, the ebabel problem, DRM, and availability of ebooks. Devices will need to improve greatly from their current state, there will need to be a single standard to which all devices and ebooks adhere, ebooks will need to be DRM-less, and all books will need to be available in ebook form, i.e., no holdout publishers and authors.
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Old 03-18-2008, 08:10 PM   #13
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At least his opinion is more informed than the other articles that have been posted here. I think he's right in many respects. The advantages MP3 players over electronic book readers have is spot on, books are already portable.

But not completely... I usually head out to Florida for a few weeks at the end of the year, with the intention of doing as little as possible. By November this year I should be very used to my Cybook and buying electronic books etc, and I'd imagine by then I could have 30 or 40 paid books that I haven't read yet, and likely at least the same amount of "free" books, classics etc that I haven't got around to reading. Normally if I was going out to Florida I'd take 2 or 3 books and buy some more over there. This year I'll have a mini-library with me.

He's also right about the pickup rate on electronic books. But 10 years is a very long time. The iPod was first launched in 2001, and who these days doesn't know what an iPod is? Who couldn't identify one? That's only been 7 years.
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Old 03-18-2008, 08:33 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Halk View Post
By November this year I should be very used to my Cybook and buying electronic books etc, and I'd imagine by then I could have 30 or 40 paid books that I haven't read yet, and likely at least the same amount of "free" books, classics etc that I haven't got around to reading.
Double both estimates and you'll be where I'm at and that's after I cut myself off. I have another 30-40 books on my online wish list. It's too easy to buy the darn things and I really want to read them all right now. I used to keep my unread books on the bookshelf on my headboard and that would keep my out of the bookstore but now I need to find will power from another source.

I can only say that I've found my electronic reading experience to be very satisfying and I'm reading more. I agree with him that if you walk in a bookstore in 10 years there will be about the same amount of pbooks but I think that the bookstores are going to be harder to find. Not necessarily a good thing.
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Old 03-18-2008, 10:19 PM   #15
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I am fairly new to the e-book scene, and have found myself reading more and more excited about reading than I have been in years. I am going on vacation this week and can't wait to show off my Sony reader to my family members who also love to read. To attempt to predict what preferences and technology will bring in ten years is premature and ignorant. I agree with bwaldron in that when I read, the meduim no longer exists...only the journey of the read.
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