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rjblue
03-15-2012, 09:36 PM
This makes me a bit sad, because Britannica was a big part of my childhood, but my kids have only ever used our set as laptop pads. :(

The final print edition goes on sale. (http://store.britannica.com/products/ecm001en0)

Japanfan
03-15-2012, 11:39 PM
I'm another who loves the smell, feel and look of books - there is something warm and comforting about being surrounded by books. Though I've thought of getting a Kindle for reading at the gym and probably will do so at some point.

Books are probably the last bastion of hard copy - though I think official documentation needed for administrative or bureaucratic purposes, like tax returns and legal reports, is still primarily hard copy and may remain so, to ensure it doesn't get lost?

But I expect that within the next 40 years or so, when the last of us who grew up with books have passed on, the developing world has caught up with the rest of the world in terms of technology, and technology has gotten even cheaper, digital will be the primary format for books and hard copy will be for collectors.

Just like vinyl for records - the sound quality and beautiful art work that went into records has been lost, but no one really thinks about it. And no one writes letters by hand anymore, those those letters had so much more of a personal touch than emails do. I still find signed, mailed greeting cards preferable to e-cards, and think a lot of people do, but that too can be expected to change.

Life marches forward and I suppose the circumspect view is to say that somethings lost and somethings gained as new inventions and technologies change how we live.

Even so, I can't help but feel very sad to think of a world without books.

gkelly
03-16-2012, 01:05 AM
Books are probably the last bastion of hard copy - though I think official documentation needed for administrative or bureaucratic purposes, like tax returns and legal reports, is still primarily hard copy and may remain so, to ensure it doesn't get lost?

I think anything that needs to be saved for generations or centuries had better be in hard copy/analog form. Yes, those physical artifacts can wear out or get destroyed, but so can digital media. The real problem is that they take up more space.

The problem with digital media is that they require some kind of device to read/play them, and a power source, and the formats keep changing.