Rekindle your love affair with books

Is the book dead? Is print obsolete? Is reading overrated?

For some people, new technologies will always pose a threat to what they know and love. When e-books first appeared, pundits predicted that they would eventually replace the printed book. Others argued that Google Book Search would infringe on the profit and copyright of traditional publishers. Rarely do such dire forecasts reflect reality.

Amazon.com’s new wireless reading device, the Kindle, is already inspiring similar predictions. Yet Amazon’s own president and CEO Jeff Bezos reinforces the fact that, despite ever-changing formats, “books aren’t dead.” The full interview with Bezos can be found in the November 26, 2007 issue of Newsweek magazine.

I first encountered mention of the Kindle a month ago while working on collection development. The Kindle shares many features with previous e-book devices with one important difference: wireless connectivity. It’s designed to operate independently of any computer. You can purchase a book through Amazon via one-touch process and once you buy the book it will be downloaded to your Kindle and stored in your library. Downloads take less than 90 seconds.

While searching for more information, I stumbled upon several blog entries. I am not the only one interested and intrigued by the Kindle. This post came from Amazon’s own backyard: Seattle PI covers the good, the bad, and the ugly of the Kindle:
http://blog.seattlepi.nwsource.com/bookpatrol/archives/121375.asp

Boingboing offers some interesting points as well:
http://gadgets.boingboing.net/2007/11/19/15-things-i-just-lea.html

The times are changing in the publishing world. However, as far as this traditional librarian is concerned, nothing beats curling up with a good (print) book and a cup of cocoa.

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