Thursday, December 4, 2008

Kindle A Year Later

CNN had a piece up yesterday about the Kindle a year after its release. You might recall that I posted about the possible effect and/or alternative of e-readers on traditional book sales last week.

I found the statement about J.K. Rowling to be typical of the vigorous debate among both writers and readers regarding the form of traditional books.

"Blockbuster writers such as J.K. Rowling, author of the "Harry Potter" series, have said they'll never allow their books to appear on the market in electronic form."

I have a feeling that, within the next generation, that reticence will fall as younger readers who have grown up on digitized formats of most of their entertainment will make an electronic format mandatory.

Of course, there will always be those who, for whatever reason, will cling to the concept of hardbound books. I'm reminded of the Star Trek (Original Series) episode "Court Martial", in which Captain Kirk's defense attorney, Samuel T. Cogley, is a man who eschews digitized law books and has an office filled with hardbound tomes, an anomaly of huge proportions in the 23rd century. Kirk's line; "You have to be either an obsessive crackpot who's escaped from his keeper, or Samuel T. Cogley, attorney at law." points out how out of place Cogley is in preferring actual books to their electronic versions.

Not sure if I would qualify (at least under that definition) as a crackpot, but I can understand the appeal of actual books I hold in my hand. However, especially with all the traveling I do, the convenience of being able to carry several books with me somewhere to read in one little device is also very appealing.

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