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  1. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by julieann View Post
    On a more personal note...with all the e-readers and such, are we all going to go blind at some point? I'm not yet 38 and I find myself either pulling my head way back to see something in small letters or putting it two inches from my eyeball...is it time for granny glasses already?
    My Lasik guy told me that reading glasses would be inevitable as we move into our forties (I'm currently 35).
    "Marge, if you're going to get mad at me every time I do something stupid, then I guess I'm just going to have to stop doing stupid things!" - Homer Simpson in the Mr. Plow episode

  2. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by julieann View Post
    PS - I pray they never get rid of movie film, I love digital films too but there is something special about big screen movies on actual film!
    We're getting there. Digital movies are cheaper than movies on film. The movie theater near me has switched completely to digital films.

    I saw an article in USA Today about the future of the bookstore. With the recent fears that Borders may soon go under, a lot of analysts are beginning to wonder what the future of bookstores, big and small, may be. I love bookstores and would be sad to see them go. Independent bookstores are already incredibly rare now. I would hate to see all bookstore become a rarity.

    http://www.usatoday.com/life/books/n...res10_CV_N.htm
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  3. #43
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    I would have death in my soul. Really.
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  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by NinjaTurtles View Post
    I imagine that the publishing industry will follow a trajectory similar to that of music industry.
    That's the most common prediction.

    Quote Originally Posted by aliceanne View Post
    This year a friend gave her an e reader. She won't be able to share her books anymore.
    Sure she will, but only with people who also have e-readers.

    Quote Originally Posted by gkelly View Post
    Actually yes. With the storms we had last summer, I have been without power for a couple days at a time. And overnight through morning a couple weeks ago.

    Didn't you have a similar situation recently?
    Yes, I did, and my e-reader lasted all four days of it, even though the one I have doesn't have a particularly good battery life. Your Kindle will stay charged for about two weeks without any rationing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cheylana View Post
    My Lasik guy told me that reading glasses would be inevitable as we move into our forties (I'm currently 35).
    Is that new? Because I am 49 and still don't need bifocals, which makes my eye doctor all giddy. When I told her that my parents didn't get them until they were in their mid-50s, she said that's pretty unusual. My parents would have been in their mid-50s about 30 years ago.

    Quote Originally Posted by modern_muslimah View Post
    a lot of analysts are beginning to wonder what the future of bookstores, big and small, may be. I love bookstores and would be sad to see them go. Independent bookstores are already incredibly rare now. I would hate to see all bookstore become a rarity.
    I'm actually much more concerned about the future of libraries than bookstores. I do love bookstores, but libraries are much more important, IMO, and they are threatened, too, although the threat is not as imminent yet.
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

  5. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by jcopper View Post
    Given the scope of the question, it's important to consider more than just the Developed World. Regardless of how ubiquitous e-readers become in the DW, there are still going to be places where books will have a place because they don't the basic essentials of an information society. As long as the world is an unequal place (and that is not going to change anytime soon), there will be books.
    As I've read, this is one of the reasons why the University of London International Programme (their distance learning degree program) still sends their materials out via mail, in hardcopy, rather than teaching their courses online - so many of their students are in regions where web access may or may not be reliable or available; electricity may or may not be reliable or available, or web access is only via cell phone, and can you imagine reading a textbook on a cell phone screen?

    That said, I teach online classes at a university where the entire experience, even the textbook, is online, not hardcopy. There are real advantages to electronic texts - ability to search, accessibility from any computer, etc. But still, a lot of my students, and I myself, will buy hardcopy editions, because it's just *easier* to really read masses and masses of academic lingo in hardcopy.
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  6. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post


    Sure she will, but only with people who also have e-readers.


    But will the e readers have to be compatible? If one person has a Nook, one person has a Kindle, and one person has something else will they be able to share?

  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by GarrAarghHrumph View Post
    can you imagine reading a textbook on a cell phone screen?
    My school is doing a study on students using iPods for textbooks. I can't imagine it, but most people who read on electronic devices read on cell phones, not e-readers. I still find that .

    E-readers have also not done particularly well in studies on academic use--or at least the Kindle hasn't. But academia is clearly headed in that direction.

    Quote Originally Posted by GarrAarghHrumph View Post
    because it's just *easier* to really read masses and masses of academic lingo in hardcopy.
    I also recently read a study that indicated that people do not retain what they read on screens as well as what they read in print, too.

    Quote Originally Posted by aliceanne View Post
    But will the e readers have to be compatible? If one person has a Nook, one person has a Kindle, and one person has something else will they be able to share?
    That can get complicated, because it depends on the format and the device.

    The real problem there isn't the e-reader formats (although they are part of the problem, particularly the Kindle); it's digital rights management. The issues there are much like the issues that face the music business--if you loan a book to someone, then that person gets to read the book without buying it. You can loan your print copy to only a few people, so the loss of profit is small with a print book; one downloaded digital book, however, can potentially be read by millions who haven't purchased the book if just one person buys it and makes it available to other people. If that happens, the writer and everyone else involved in the book production are not being paid, and have no reason to continue producing books.

    To me, that virtually guarantees that e-books will become cheaper. That's what happened with the music industry; they found out that most people would spend 99 cents for a song without thinking twice and would do so without trying to find free alternatives. It's already very easy to strip DRM from an e-book and hand it around to anyone who wants it. The publishing industry is going to have to come to grips with that.

    But anyway, the e-reader format issue, such as it is, will go away, as consumer demand will make that happen, but DRM will continue to make loaning and borrowing books a problem. For what it's worth, I'm on the side of the publishers there; if you want to read a book without paying for it, do your part to keep libraries relevant and borrow it from an official, licensed agency.
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

  8. #48

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    My niece was given an ipad through work - provincial government - as she attends quite a few meetings. It works great as she has instant access to govt acts, agreements and relevant documents. I think it's awesome, just a great tool. I think for an e-reader to be efficient for work, it's going to have to be either provided or made available through the buy a computer thru work concept.

    Quote Originally Posted by prancer

    To me, that virtually guarantees that e-books will become cheaper. That's what happened with the music industry; they found out that most people would spend 99 cents for a song without thinking twice and would do so without trying to find free alternatives. It's already very easy to strip DRM from an e-book and hand it around to anyone who wants it. The publishing industry is going to have to come to grips with that.

    But anyway, the e-reader format issue, such as it is, will go away, as consumer demand will make that happen, but DRM will continue to make loaning and borrowing books a problem. For what it's worth, I'm on the side of the publishers there; if you want to read a book without paying for it, do your part to keep libraries relevant and borrow it from an official, licensed agency.
    Agree. The only time I don't use say itunes is for hard to find music, and if I just want to listen to it for enjoyment I use grooveshark.

    Our regional library system lends books out on ebook format now, and they have in place a lock (fumbling for a better word) where once your 2 week borrowing time is over, you can't continue reading the book. I'm not sure what the publishing industry could do to stop x number of people from handing it around. But would there be any more than there is now? ie lending a book or in a lot of people's cases, donating them to say the spca which is what I do. And that's another kettle of fish......2nd hand book stores who fund charitable organizations.
    Gone crazy. Be back soon.

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by pat c View Post
    Our regional library system lends books out on ebook format now, and they have in place a lock (fumbling for a better word) where once your 2 week borrowing time is over, you can't continue reading the book. I'm not sure what the publishing industry could do to stop x number of people from handing it around.
    Yes, that's how the borrowing feature works on e-devices as well if we are talking device to device loan. You can loan an e-book to another person for 14 days and then it is gone from their device. While the book is on loan, you can't read it on your device yourself; it magically re-appears after 14 days. The DRM security that controls all of that also ensures that the book can't be copied or distributed from the other device--legally.

    People can strip the DRM from books if they know how and are willing to go to the time and trouble, but you do have to strip the DRM in order to hand around a library book or a book purchased from most bookstores. If you do it with a library book, the library will KNOW because the book will not be "returned" and there go your borrowing privileges.

    E-reader devices require you to use something like Adobe Digital Reads to manage your e-books (at least those you obtain from a source other than a bookstore that sells your device, if that's what you have) for the same reason. ADR controls the DRM on your books and makes you behave yourself (or tries). If I go to Smashwords and get a free book in ePub format, for example, I have to save it to my computer and then load it to my device through ADR. That allows the publisher to control the use of the book; I can't just load it on to someone else's device from my computer (ADR knows that trick).

    A lot of people don't understand that there is a difference between an open source e-book (available to all for free because it is out of copyright or the author has released it) and a free e-book. I hear a lot of rants because a book that was free last week isn't free any more, or people think that because they got a book when it was free is supposed to mean there is no DRM security. Publishers offer free e-books to get you to buy books, not to be your friend and let you read for free.
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

  10. #50
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    I don't think books will become obsolete and I personally prefer the feeling of an actual book in my hand even though my cell has kindel on it.

  11. #51
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    I wonder what the impact on authors will be. Book sales are marginal in any event. A favorite author of mine lost her contract because of sales. Her books still sold to her *fans* but that wasn't enough for the publisher to keep her on contract. Publishers and therefore authors don't receive any royalty payments from used books or even those sold to libraries. Sharing of an ebook will be the same. Of course, it's possible the publishing companies will just disappear and every author will self-publish and set up some means of selling their product on their own websites.
    Those who never succeed themselves are always the first to tell you how.

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    I've heard on the CBS radio that this academic year 1st year medical students at Stanford were all given iPads with their textbooks uploaded on them. This way they don't have to lug around many lbs of books AND they can search the text on their iPad. Not sure how they are liking it so far.
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    I can say we tried electronic textbooks 3 years ago and the students hated them. I was really surprised. We haven't used them since.
    Those who never succeed themselves are always the first to tell you how.

  14. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
    I wonder what the impact on authors will be. Book sales are marginal in any event. A favorite author of mine lost her contract because of sales. Her books still sold to her *fans* but that wasn't enough for the publisher to keep her on contract. ... Of course, it's possible the publishing companies will just disappear and every author will self-publish and set up some means of selling their product on their own websites.
    Potentially, this could have a beneficial effect on authors. Aside from the self-publishing option (and I think there's great potential there, using the e-book format), some publishing houses may be more willing to go with an author if they publish the book only in electronic form. In printing a book, the initial setup costs are significant, as are the per-unit costs. Take the paper out of the question, and the publisher has to sell far fewer copies to make a profit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrushka View Post
    I don't think books will become obsolete and I personally prefer the feeling of an actual book in my hand even though my cell has kindel on it.
    I prefer an actual book in my hand to my cell phone, too .

    Quote Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
    Of course, it's possible the publishing companies will just disappear and every author will self-publish and set up some means of selling their product on their own websites.
    Well, maybe. But I see the publishing industry evolving in a different way. A lot of authors who self-publish produce unpolished work that I don't think will be acceptable once there are better options for cheap books.

    Editing counts. A lot of self-published books are full of inconsistencies and have terrible plot development. And no, your reading group isn't just as good as a professional editor.

    Copyediting counts. Even professionally published books are full of spelling and grammar errors that drive readers nuts.

    Cover art counts--and no, your book doesn't look just as nice if you slap some clipart on it and call it a cover. You can only get away with that now because the novelty factor of e-reading is still a factor.

    I know that a lot of people are predicting that self-publishing will be IT, but I think that any time you have a product that is being sold by a lot of people, packaging becomes even more important, and that's what publishers do. James Patterson doesn't sell millions because he's a great writer--he sells millions because his books are packaged to the nines.

    A writer I know is predicting that instead of publishing houses, we will have professional polishers--lots of self-employed editors and artists who work for hire. But I think advertising has to be factored in there, too, and again, that's what publishers do.

    Quote Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
    I can say we tried electronic textbooks 3 years ago and the students hated them. I was really surprised. We haven't used them since.
    That's pretty much been the result of the studies I've seen. Most people find them too complicated to use for study.

    But academia is still, for the most part, charging ahead. It's cheaper, and anything that saves money at this point is going to win favor.

    Quote Originally Posted by Artemis@BC View Post
    Potentially, this could have a beneficial effect on authors. Aside from the self-publishing option (and I think there's great potential there, using the e-book format), some publishing houses may be more willing to go with an author if they publish the book only in electronic form. In printing a book, the initial setup costs are significant, as are the per-unit costs. Take the paper out of the question, and the publisher has to sell far fewer copies to make a profit.
    ITA. And I think rfisher's author might do well self-publishing if she's already got a market. She won't make the bestseller lists that way, but if she self-publishes with a following already in place, she will sell books.

    LOL that I am now getting ads to self-publish my book or buy e-books at the top of every page.
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    Well, maybe. But I see the publishing industry evolving in a different way. A lot of authors who self-publish produce unpolished work that I don't think will be acceptable once there are better options for cheap books.

    Editing counts. A lot of self-published books are full of inconsistencies and have terrible plot development. And no, your reading group isn't just as good as a professional editor.

    Copyediting counts. Even professionally published books are full of spelling and grammar errors that drive readers nuts.

    Cover art counts--and no, your book doesn't look just as nice if you slap some clipart on it and call it a cover. You can only get away with that now because the novelty factor of e-reading is still a factor.

    .
    Damn Prancer. There you go squashing my future like a bug.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
    Damn Prancer. There you go squashing my future like a bug.
    Go to Smashwords and publish NOW, before the revolution really kicks in.

    Or you might want to try Outskirts. Their ad is now on top of every page for me.
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

  18. #58
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    I would really miss books. As others have said, I like the look, feel, and even the smell of a real book. I like the history of a book that has been mine for a long time - there's the bite in the cover from when I foolishly put my brand new Harry Potter hardcover on a table low enough for the then-baby bumblepup to reach it; there's the corner I turned down because I wanted to remember that passage; this book always opens to the same page because accidentally put something heavy on it while it was open. I get not liking to lug boxes of books around, but I love having them around me. Will I eventually get used to reading electronically? Probably. But I spend so much of my time on computers that I see reading as a way to get far from the electronic, plugged-in world.

    As far as music goes, I love the availability to get songs online, but I still buy cds. I like albums, I like cover art and liner notes. I bought a bunch of songs on iTunes the first year I had an iPod, but I can't remember the last time I did it. And I only listen to my iPod when I'm travelling. I do like having music on my computer though - I just rip cds to my laptop when I buy them.
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  19. #59

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    Quote Originally Posted by genevieve View Post
    I would really miss books. As others have said, I like the look, feel, and even the smell of a real book.
    I share this sentiment. And I love looking through bookcases. My bookcases are a very personal thing, I only hang on to books that are special to me. And I buy most of my books second hand or take them out from the library, which isn't killing trees.

    The idea of reading an ebook seems just wrong to me. I'm thinking of using an e-reader when I go to the gym, but that would only be for easy reading to pass the time. . .for serious reading, meaning hours spent lying in bed with a good book, I'm highly resistant to the idea of using an e-reader.

    However, once those of us raised on hard copy are gone, hard copy books will most likely disappear. To me that's a sad thought. A world without books would be missing something precious. The same could be said about digital music, photos and films. And email - I do miss the written letter form as it had the personal touch of a person's hand-writing. I've saved all my letters from years past and enjoy looking through them. But that doesn't bother me as much as the idea of a world without books.

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    I also wonder if looking at things on a screen all the time is bad for your eyes too.Another point for real books.

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