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TheFool

Eeeee! Books!

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Eeeee! Books!

The digital age is upon me. I recently went through my books with my girlfriend in attempt to expand both her and my potential reading sources. What I found was a bit shocking. Over half the books I have read in the last year have been in e-book format!

 

Yes, Kindle for Iphone and Project Gutenberg have invaded my library.

 

I started to ponder that great question: Is the digital version an improvement from the paperbacks of yore? I can come up with a virtual ton of reasons why they are, a handful as to why they aren't; yet I still find myself yearning for the smell and feel of paper. I wonder if my children or their children will have that same want of paper or if the days of a paperback novel will die out in the stuttering and sputtering way we see the daily newspaper dying.

 

So here's my list of reasons why an e-book is superior to a paperback.

 

1. Unbreakable! Sure you can delete a file, but unless Amazon goes out of business I can get the book back at any time.

2. Unlimited shelf space! Ok, its limited by the size of my ipone or kindle hard drive, but since I can redownload at any time I don't have to worry about my attic collapsing from the weight.

3. Last page memory! The days of trying to figure out what page I was on are over. It automatically goes back to the last page I read. You can also jump to specific chapters or manual tabs you have placed in the book. No more dog-eared pages either.

4. Adjustable font! For those of us who can't see the nose on our face you can make the size as big or as small as you need. No need for special glasses or strange novelty devices.

5. Instant availability! Thanks to the wonders of the internet, as long as you have a way to get online you can instantly get (almost) any book you want, any time you want it.

6. Theoretically lower costs: Right now most ebooks are cheaper than their new counterpart (but you can't buy used books). In theory as they become more prevalent you should see this price come down even further as competition heats up. Even still, with no cost of production, the author should be making more $; which should translate to more and better books!

 

Think that e-books are better? Think paperbacks will always have a place? Why?

Give us your list!

 

 

 

 

Words from The Fool:

Maybe... just maybe... I still like real books. The feel, the smell, and the LOOK of having them. It looks nice to see a shelf full of memories and they're handy for killing spiders. However, the times are always changing. I believe we are at the very start of the decline of paper books and that several generations from now they'll be a niche product for new authors. Several generations before that they'll be nothing more than antique bobbles and used for researching things prior to the digital age. Still, that won't stop my girlfriend from her love of reading a book so many times the pages fall out. No fooling.

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I got a Nook (Barnes and Noble equivalent of a Kindle) for Mother's day, and I love it. Sometimes I miss paper. But I currently have three bookshelves full of books, half of my garage, and an entire used-to-be-walk-in closet lost to my rather obsessive reading habits.

 

While there aren't used books, there are a ton of free and really cheap classics. I carry the Nook with me everywhere, and when my kids are bored we break out Alice in Wonderland. When I'm alone, I can read other things. I would hate to lug around a book for me and a book for each one of my kids. (I've done it, and now I can't even imagine doing it.)

 

I think paperbacks will always have a place, just not necessarily as big of one that they have had.

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I have a Kindle and it's great. I read in school when I don't have homework to work on.

 

I still buy books though, some books I want to read aren't on the Kindle. I don't really mind buying books though. I still prefer an actual copy of the book over the digital copy.

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Barnes & Noble has roughly 1000 bookstores and Borders has roughly half that. totaling to almost 1500 bookstores in the USA alone. As long as the stores remain avaiable for an avid-bookreader (such as myself) to pick up a book and hug it and cherish it like a mother would do for her child, I do not think that paper books will go out of style in this century. And I pray to Jane Austen and Willam Shakespeare when I say that I hope that society will never have an excuse to get rid of any paper books whatsoever.

 

There is also this example/analogy -

 

It takes one drop of rain to make an E-reader unreadable.

 

It takes a bathtub full of water and a hair-dryer operated by a caring hand to make a paper book all the more precious.

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@pink: though they could always make a waterproof, smashproof E-reader like they do with laptops.

 

I like both mediums, though being a science major I'm used to reading off a screen than text nowadays. If you want papers for research the internet's the way to go, not books.

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I think paperbacks will always have a special place in my heart even as I definitely put my hand up for e-books. Speaking as a book lover who had to part with my library when I went to university overseas, I realised that since I'm bringing my laptop ANYWAY and it doesn't use up extra luggage space if I have 100 e-books on my laptop (and think of the questions the customs official might ask if I were to bring an entire luggage-full of fiction books overseas XD), I gotta love the mobile versions. But paperbacks are good when my laptop is too heavy to bring to university every day. On the other hand, with kindle and all... well, no one said mankind had to stand still :)

 

Oh yeah, and I can search for a particular section in the e-books if I forget where it is. You can't do that with paperbacks :P

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Well, I love paper books. My mom is the same, she said she could never stand a kindle. Then my dad got one (for himself) and he hasn't been able to use it, since my mom is always hogging it. (In fact, it was so easy for her to just buy books, that he actually had to ban her from buying anything with it. She was spending way too much money.)So I guess it can be addictive and fun.

 

I dunno. My dream is to have a library in my own home. I've already got four bookshelves mostly filled. (Actually, I'm getting to the point where I almost need a fifth one.) So yeah, I personally love paper books.

 

Plus I heard that if you read the terms for buying books on the kindle, you technically aren't "buying" them but "renting" them. I think amazon reserved the right to call back any book they release at any time. Supposedly this happened when they accidentally released a book that they didn't have permission to release. So after all these people paid for it, they took it back and refused to refund it, saying that they had only paid to "rent" it. Or something like that. I haven't actually looked into it since then, but it does make me wary about it.

 

Actually, that's not the only digital media with that risk. If you look at the downloadable stuff that (mostly) major game publishers are releasing, half the time it's technically just "renting" as well. (Like the starcraft cheating ban? You buy the game, cheat in SINGLE player, and get permanently banned from ever playing it again? How's that fair?)

 

I like digital media, but I think it needs some more time to develop into a fair business. If that makes sense.

 

And that post was way too long! Sorry people.

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Another good reason came to me as I went to read a "real" book last night... I realized "Oh crap, I have to turn on the lights!" - yeah, no backlit screen = I have to get up when im all sleepy from reading and turn em off by hand.

 

Thus: We can safely say ebooks will kill the final use I had for a clapper.

 

Clap on clap off, the clapper. *CLAP CLAP*

 

-Fool

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KK_Twain wrote:

Actually, that's not the only digital media with that risk. If you look at the downloadable stuff that (mostly) major game publishers are releasing, half the time it's technically just "renting" as well. (Like the starcraft cheating ban? You buy the game, cheat in SINGLE player, and get permanently banned from ever playing it again? How's that fair?

Umm... I don't get it. You apply a cheat hack in a game and complain when it's banned? We have in Aveyond Technical Questions quite a few topics about people's games getting messed up only because they used a pirated version/hacked the game, and I don't see why they expect us to fix it for them. I think the developer has the right to stop people from using software in cases like that, e.g. via Windows validation tools etc. But, I do understand with what you said about Amazon's renting.

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I agree with aisling: I think its perfectly fair for a company to ban you if you try to modify the game in any way its not meant to. You're not suppose to cheat. If you use an illegal cheat the company has every right to ban you. If you used a legit cheat (like with AM's goodies) and get banned for using it, than there's a problem.

 

And it doesn't matter whether the game is single or a multiplayer game. By cheating, you are modifying the game and making it do things it isn't suppose to. Even though its a single player game, your cheat might have side effects you don't know about that affect other players. AdventureQuest for example is a single player game. But cheaters use up resources making the server run slow and takes forever for things to load.

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While I wouldn't object to having an e-reader, I love -actual- books. There is just something about the paper and the feel of the books in my hand that makes me a very happy person.

 

But an e-reader would be convenient, as I have no bookstore near me, an all I would need for an e-reader is an internet connection. But then I would end up buying two copies of everything, I know I would- one in digital form, and one in 'book' form.

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I like the idea of kindle, but have not taken the jump yet. They seem really useful for travelers and a friend of mine was able to bring enough books on kindle for 22 hours of travel (and it was much lighter).

 

Some authors I collect the books and it might be difficult to switch in the middle of a series and other series will always feel great in book form.

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I got a Kindle a few weeks ago, and the convenience is great. I don't have to go looking for the boxes that our books are packed in, then looking through a particular box for a particular book, or wonder what bookshelf it might be on. I don't have heaps of books cluttering my nightstand, and if I go away, it's much easier to take my collection with me. I haven't read "for fun" for such a long time, and I'm starting to get bits of time again now to do it.

 

The Kindle isn't backlit, so I still need a light, but the little 'book-light' I have attaches to it, when it would never attach to a real book, and if it did, would slow down page turning.

 

The big disadvantage for me is that MANY of the books available in the Kindle library are only to US residents ... *sigh* just like their game library. Luckily, I'm not interested in the latest releases as much as the (mostly free) classics.

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I'm sad to think that real books are going to become extinct eventually (except for preserved classics for historical interest, like swords). But it's inevitable and no use pretending it won't happen in due course. So let's make the most of the paper scent and beauty of the hard copy while we can.

 

I never used to have a problem reading from the screen. But these days I find it hard because I get too sore from spending too much time on the computer chair. My weak eyes also have problems spending too much time reading from a tiny computer screen. People are going to find their eyes affected by doing too much of this, even if they have good eyesight, they will eventually find they have eyestrain, and they will find the ageing process is going to catch up with them. But technology is improving all the time and this technology will keep getting more user-friendly. Look how far it has come in only a few years.

 

Fool, why don't you have a lamp on your bedside table? I have always had one. You can read that beautiful hardback from your library and won't need your electronics to light your way like a torch when getting up in the night. :)

 

I would be wary of buying from some dodgy outfit that can take back what you have paid for. Can you back up these ebooks as soon as they are downloaded?

 

Believe me, no software is ever yours for keeps unless you back it up on different hardware. If you buy a whole heap of software and never back it up, you deserve to lose the lot. Just remember - there are only two kinds of users; those who have lost data and those who will. It is not a question of if, but when. No fooling.

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I like real books because

1. It hurts your eyes reading from the computer. Why? Because if I start reading a good book, I won't stop until I finish it. I start around 9 pm and end my morning.

 

2. They just are special

 

3. Libraries look impressive

 

4. I have to study from real books :(

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I like real books because

1. It hurts your eyes reading from the computer. Why? Because if I start reading a good book, I won't stop until I finish it. I start around 9 pm and end my morning.

 

2. They just are special

 

3. Libraries look impressive

 

4. I have to study from real books :(

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Gaip...

 

I think the bedroom table lamp problem starts with the fact I have no table in my bedroom! In fact, if you must know, I have no furniture at all other than my computer chair and desk.

 

It's all temporary: I plan on getting a better place this coming year and buying some furniture... perhaps even a bedside table and lamp combo.

 

As for Ebooks & backups. I believe it depends on which product you use. I do not think Kindle or Nook have external backups: However, I believe if you jail break your iphone you can back up your Iphone Kindle library. I haven't tried and don't know if it is "legal" - though in my eyes it should be.

 

In a lot of ways an ebook is more like a very old fashion paper book. How many documents do we have surviving from 500 years ago? Few. We lose paper data all the time too :) In 100 years I would hope we would have a more advanced backup system that would make data loss even LESS of an issue than it is now.

 

Then again, this means that compromising picture of The Fool dancing naked will live forever... hmmm there's a downside to everything!

 

Also while I am on the subject, the eye strain of reading an ebook will only improve too. The problem at the moment is the refresh rate of the screen & the contrast between light and dark... I think this can be improved in future generations of e-readers and eventually you'll get no more eye strain from it than you would reading a regular book.

 

Something like that :)

 

Oh and nice "NO FOOLING" Line :D I'm inventing a catch-phrase!

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here is my pro/ con list of kindle vs; paper backs;

ppr bcks: pro;

cost less if lost

no headache from staring at a screen to long

great covers

no worries if screen is smuged

cons; take up shelf room

finding place

pges tear easily

avaibility

kindel:

pros;

almost always avaible

easier to carry

easier to see

cons;

cost of kindle

cost of ech ebook

headach from starring at screen to long

all in all i will remain a paperback fan. kindles are great but unnesssary to me.

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do starring at the screen really cause people headaches? I can stare at screens for *thinks* many many hours if needed without any headaches.

 

Now, watching a bourne identity movie or playing that Dreamcast water game who's name have escaped me = headache after an hour watching/playing it. lol

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I believe Kindles, Nooks, etc., try to achieve just the right lighting and contrast so that the screen mimics paper. So, it feels like you are looking at paper, not a screen.

I haven't heard of many people getting headaches from staring at them.

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I just got a kobo a few months ago. Absolutely love it. Its an ereader for those of you who don't know. It looks like paper, but it's not.. It doesnt have backlight and stores thousands of books. I wanted a kindle but no credit card. Doh!

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b0r11MoAjuY this is it, lol.

 

So how many of you have one? Interested? I much prefer them over books now. Environmentally friendly, compact, but they don't have the pretty colorful covers, but a cool thing is is that you can carry your whole library with you wherever you go.

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I don't own these electronic thingies but I can see they're practical, specially comparing to the weight of books if you wanted to carry many of them with you.

I have always loved books though, including touching them and knocking on their covers with my fingernails and smelling the pages again and again when they're new. And I find them more comfortable for the eyes.

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@cieron: paperbacks are just as easily disposable as digital books, albeit with greater consequences. Paperbacks will end up in the landfill or recycling plants and cost trees to make. A digital book only takes a few mb of your harddrive and disposed doesn't cost a thing.

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