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Old 08-06-2010, 04:08 PM   #1
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Nicolas Negroponte: The Physical Book is Dead in Five Years

http://techcrunch.com/2010/08/06/physical-book-dead/

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By “dead,” he of course doesn’t mean completely dead. But he means that digital books are going to replace physical books as the dominant form.
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“People will say ‘no, no, no’ — of course you like your libraries,” Negroponte said. But he cited the report that sales of books for the Kindle recently surpassed sales of hardcover books.

“It’s happening. It not happening in 10 years. It’s happening in 5 years,” he said.
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Old 08-06-2010, 04:25 PM   #2
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It will happened but not that soon.
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Old 08-06-2010, 04:31 PM   #3
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I don't think it will happen that soon, either. I don't need to smell or touch books. It's not personal.

There will be many instances when print will still be more practical for years to come. More important, schools will be the big bottleneck. Look how strapped state and local governments are. They're limping along. They will build momentum and move more toward digital, but look how long it takes for government and schools to change anything, even when money isn't as tight as it is now. Look at the jobless rate. Are parents going to be able to afford e-readers for multiple kids? How many of them aren't paying taxes, paying mortgages, paying rent, because they can't? Affluent districts can move more quickly, but that means many districts will straggle.

There are some groups of former educators and such that are working on free textbooks in digital form. They produce them, then offer for free. It will be interesting to see whether they get tied up with the religious right over science books and such.

By the way, Negroponte has been struggling with the one laptop per child project. They've made some progress, but I think he was too optimistic with that, too.

Last edited by Maggie Leung; 08-06-2010 at 04:38 PM.
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Old 08-06-2010, 04:45 PM   #4
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I think he's probably right or close to it. Bezos thinks ebook sales will surpass paper sales next year. So five years for a substantial shift to digital might even be conservative. By that time we'll probably have affordable color e-ink, longer battery life, cheaper readers and so on.
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Old 08-06-2010, 05:41 PM   #5
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It WILL happen that soon. Electronic media can replace physical fast... Didn't take much longer for digital music to become the dominant form sold.
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Old 08-06-2010, 05:54 PM   #6
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It WILL happen that soon. Electronic media can replace physical fast... Didn't take much longer for digital music to become the dominant form sold.
Digital music sales haven't surpassed physical music sales yet.
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Old 08-06-2010, 05:57 PM   #7
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Digital music sales haven't surpassed physical music sales yet.
I'm one of the holdouts. I buy all my music on CDs. Better sound, and I have the originals to convert as I like. I don't plan to buy digital music unless I have no choice.

This is a snapshot of how desperate governments have become: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/07/us...B.html?_r=1&hp

All tax collections are down. That's where school money comes from.

Last edited by Maggie Leung; 08-06-2010 at 06:00 PM.
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Old 08-06-2010, 05:59 PM   #8
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I'm one of the holdouts. I buy all my music on CDs. Better sound, and I have the originals to convert as I like. I don't plan to buy digital music unless I have no choice.
They still make CDs? How quaint.
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Old 08-06-2010, 06:02 PM   #9
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Although neither the iTunes Store nor the Kindle Store were the first, it will be interesting to see when digital sales do outpace physical sales in both music and books.

iTunes Store, 2003-->2012?
Kindle Store, 2007-->2015?
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Old 08-06-2010, 06:02 PM   #10
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They still make CDs? How quaint.
Yes, they're right near the Kindle and Sony e-readers at Targets across the nation, for instance, lol.
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Old 08-06-2010, 06:06 PM   #11
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I'm one of the holdouts. I buy all my music on CDs. Better sound, and I have the originals to convert as I like. I don't plan to buy digital music unless I have no choice.

This is a snapshot of how desperate governments have become: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/07/us...B.html?_r=1&hp

All tax collections are down. That's where school money comes from.
Did I just have a stroke? The edit on this post has my head spinning, and my sanity in question.
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Old 08-06-2010, 06:08 PM   #12
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Did I just have a stoke? The edit on this post has my head spinning, and my sanity in question.
The edit follows on my earlier post about schools being the bottleneck. Can't tell whether you had a stroke. Are you slurring or unable to feel one side of your body?
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Old 08-06-2010, 06:09 PM   #13
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Yes, they're right near the Kindle and Sony e-readers at Targets across the nation, for instance, lol.
I thought those were museums! <smile>
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Old 08-06-2010, 06:10 PM   #14
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I thought those were museums! <smile>
Not yet, but maybe. Some museums are moving into malls. Go where the people are, lol. Maybe Target will be next.
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Old 08-06-2010, 06:11 PM   #15
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The edit follows on my earlier post about schools being the bottleneck. Can't tell whether you had a stroke. Are you slurring or unable to feel one side of your body?
I appreciate the clarification, and concern. But I am convinced the symptoms you describe are due to the tequila.
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