THE FUTURE OF THE BOOK
This major seminar, organised by the Digital Publishing Forum, being held at Auckland's Hyatt Hotel got underway this morning in fine style with two outstanding speakers.
First up was Neelan Choksi, CEO of Lexcycle, developers of Stanza ebook reader for the iPhone.
He first gave the 150+ attendees a look at the digital book publishing scene in the US and then presented a superb display of the iPhone and how it is used especially for downloading and reading books. The big advantage with the iPhone is that it is in colour whereas book readers such as Sony and Kindle are not.
Then Sherman Young of Macquarie University and author of the book, The Book is Dead, Long Live the Book, entertained and provoked the audience with A History of the World in four and a half slides (with apologies to Julian Barnes).
His slides were titled -
In the beginning we talked and it was good
Then came writing, and it was on the wall
Then came the book and it weas good
Then came the electronic age, and we became people of the screen
Then the digital age - this was the half slide as this age has only just been born.
It was a brilliant, thoughtful and entertaining introduction to his subject.
Here are a few one liners from his provocative address:
We tend to confuse the book culture with the print culture.
Print is where books go to die.
The book is not dead, it is just resting.
And a quote from Alan Kay - the best way to predict the future is to invent it.
And check out longtime Internet analyst Paul Reynolds's blog - The Book meets the Brotherhood. Paul is also at the Seminar.
As an e-book author who specifically went with an e-publisher, I'm all in favor of the move away from print or let's say more interest being shown in e-books. I don't believe print books will ever be replaced completely.
But I do wish the hand-held readers would come down in price, especially here in NZ!
"Print is where books go to die." - that is very provocative!
Maybe so, but print is also where books go to be beautiful. So much printed book design at the moment is beautiful to look at and hold and keep. Do digital publishers realise that book consumers/customers feel that way? Digital/e-books have a long way to go in that regard.
"Print is where books go to die" - that is not provocative - it is plain stupid.
I have books in my library that are over 5 centuries old. A Chinese scholar may have books that go back fourfold that time.
Please may I be around when all the batteries fail-
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