PDA

View Full Version : Just think: Will paper books persist?



Inclusa
2015-Oct-13, 05:55 AM
Let's discuss paper books:
Encyclopedia (Wikipedia has replaced much of the function of previous electronic encyclopedia; during my high school years, I was amused by Worldbook, Grolier, Encarta Encyclopedia, and spent hours browsing through the articles) is not really that practically on paper; who would bother to read through copies and copies of encyclopedia? I tried in my school days, but these references aren't practical at all.
Remember: I have lived through the era without the Internet, and my regular Internet usage didn't start until around 2000.
Some people mention the "superiority" of paper dictionaries (I still have one or two Oxford Canadian dictionaries), but with the sheer size of the contemporary English vocabulary, this will be increasingly challenging.
Electronic dictionaries were quite popular in the 1990s, but I guess these failed since the emergence of smart phones, etc.
Encyclopedia and dictionaries in paper forms are proven inconvenient.
On the other hand, novels and shorter non-fictions in paper forms can still be quite convenient, and they have persisted far more than any media has.
Remember: Not all books come with e-book formats, although I have read on the Internet for many years.

blueshift
2015-Oct-13, 10:20 PM
Paper wins hands down for me. I can only look at a screen for a short time before getting cramps in my legs from sitting or headaches from the glare. I like to turn pages and I don't care for screens on my cell that much. I do like to have a book in my hand when in public and let others see what I am reading. Good conversations start up that way at times when someone takes notice and asks a question or two.

NorthernDevo
2015-Oct-14, 01:12 AM
To my knowledge, nothing is really going to change in the world of book publishing until the advent of a practical and low-cost foldable electronic paper. Both Blueshift and Inclusa make very good points regarding the issues surrounding paper publishing, but as far as I know the deciding factor will ultimately be cost to the publishers, and at the moment, paper is still the medium of choice simply for that reason - it's cheap.

Foldable electronic paper will be the technology that'll finally take publishing out of the pulp-and-paper world, as far as I can see. The modern book readers are nice, but as Blueshift says they're a far cry from an actual book. FEP will recreate much of the sensuous experience of actual book reading, but it's nowhere near ready for production yet and especially not ready to be formed into books or book analogues.

Fortunately, even when it does arrive there's still a huge amount of pulp out there ready to be recycled; we're not running out of paper books any time soon. Keep in mind that book paper is just about the lowest grade of paper that can be printed on, so it'll still be available long after the prime grades are recycled out.

Over time, things like information sources - encyclopediae, dictionaries, directories, catalogues - will become online sources, rather than printed codices. Most of them already are - I used to run the Yellow Pages for the majority of North America and that market is completely gone now. Same for the huge electronics supply catalogues of an earlier age. Wikipedia, Dictionary.com and similar resources have replaced any need for paper works which will become obsolete shortly after printing.

So when it comes to books, the ones - as far as I can see - likely to survive this modern transition in the here and now at least will be the ones we want to survive: the entertainment and individually-authored books. Due to the simple cost, they will likely be the ones to continue to be printed on paper. So your novels, cookbooks, memoirs, histories, etc. - everything you love in your local bookstore - are, as far as I can see, likely to remain on paper. (Keep in mind too that that scenario is based on the possibility that logging - the first link in the pulp-and-paper chain - ceases, which ain't gonna happen any time soon either.)

So the crisp ssshhh as you turn that first page, the dusty smell, the lovely rough-smooth feel of a real book under your fingertips and the sense of pleasant anticipation as you turn to Page One will remain until the amount of recycleable pulp in the world disappears...but there's so much out there, both as recycle and as fresh from the mill, I can't see it happening in my lifetime.

Not the most coherent of responses; it's pretty late for me. But as far as I can see of all the wood-pulp products to be phased out by modern technology; actual books with pages will probably be the very last to go...and that is a very nice thought to go to sleep on. :)

'Nite!

Noclevername
2015-Oct-14, 01:19 AM
Personally, I like my tablet. But you don't have to recharge paper books.

NorthernDevo
2015-Oct-14, 01:31 AM
Personally, I like my tablet. But you don't have to recharge paper books.

Tablets aren't so hot at swatting spiders, either. :D

Noclevername
2015-Oct-14, 02:59 AM
Tablets aren't so hot at swatting spiders, either. :D

Sure they are... once.

Inclusa
2015-Oct-14, 03:34 AM
Personally, I like my tablet. But you don't have to recharge paper books.

Sorry, my tablet went kaput a while ago, and the Apple Store required hours to check and repair.

Jim
2015-Oct-14, 11:38 AM
Sure they are... once.

Oh, no, more than once. Of course, after the first time that's about all they're good for.

There is something to be said about the joy of lingering over a printed page, rereading the same lines to pull out every nuance running your fingers over the print to get the tactile feel of the words. You can do that with an electronic reader, I guess, but it just isn't the same.

danscope
2015-Oct-14, 06:21 PM
A book can be enjoyed by you again and again and perhaps shared with other people and again shared with other people and continues to live on and on and on . That is the idea. But the greedy and bankrupt heart prefers to " sell " ..... over and over and over ad nauseum .
" I cannot live without books " . Thomas Jefferson

LookingSkyward
2015-Oct-14, 06:33 PM
Baen dot com - if you like their SciFi, is DRM free. Once you buy an e-book you can download it for any changes in platform. Also have a pretty decent free library. I still have a lot of paper books, but usually I read the e-book first to decide if I have room on my bookshelves.

edit to correct typo in domain name

Inclusa
2015-Oct-15, 04:11 AM
Baen dot com - if you like their SciFi, is DRM free. Once you buy an e-book you can download it for any changes in platform. Also have a pretty decent free library. I still have a lot of paper books, but usually I read the e-book first to decide if I have room on my bookshelves.

edit to correct typo in domain name

Alas, I read quite little these few years; my last visit to a library was to donate a few surplus audio CDs.

Noclevername
2015-Oct-15, 07:42 AM
A lot of the posts in this thread are based on nostalgia for paper books because in most of our childhoods, readers and tablets just didn't exist. However, we're not the future. The true test of what will probably happen is what kids are doing right now.

Looking at my electronics-obsessed young niece and nephew, who also read books all the time, I'd say paper is safe for a good long while yet.

Swift
2015-Oct-15, 12:35 PM
Will paper books persist?
At least as long as I'm alive.

Romanus
2015-Oct-18, 06:24 PM
Yes. Paper books are endlessly transferable, fundamentally conservative, non-proprietary in format, independent of power sources, and--if well made and cared for--will last indefinitely. You'd be hard-pressed to find many links that still work after 10 years, yet the world's libraries are filled with books centuries old, to say nothing of vellum codices or preserved papyri.

publiusr
2015-Oct-18, 06:37 PM
I like older books that are usually found in library discard sales.

slang
2015-Oct-18, 08:12 PM
Sorry, my tablet went kaput a while ago, [...]

Hate when that happens, but what can you do? Inscribe and bake a new one.

I wonder if anyone wondered if clay, parchment and papyrus would persist.

danscope
2015-Oct-18, 08:23 PM
" Ah.... the cat's got it. Better get capsules next time. "

ToSeek
2015-Oct-22, 09:05 PM
I think there will be paper books for a long time yet. I've even heard - though I haven't looked into it much - that there's a swing from ebooks back to physical books in terms of total sales.

Inclusa
2015-Oct-31, 03:10 AM
To my knowledge, nothing is really going to change in the world of book publishing until the advent of a practical and low-cost foldable electronic paper. Both Blueshift and Inclusa make very good points regarding the issues surrounding paper publishing, but as far as I know the deciding factor will ultimately be cost to the publishers, and at the moment, paper is still the medium of choice simply for that reason - it's cheap.

Foldable electronic paper will be the technology that'll finally take publishing out of the pulp-and-paper world, as far as I can see. The modern book readers are nice, but as Blueshift says they're a far cry from an actual book. FEP will recreate much of the sensuous experience of actual book reading, but it's nowhere near ready for production yet and especially not ready to be formed into books or book analogues.

Fortunately, even when it does arrive there's still a huge amount of pulp out there ready to be recycled; we're not running out of paper books any time soon. Keep in mind that book paper is just about the lowest grade of paper that can be printed on, so it'll still be available long after the prime grades are recycled out.

Over time, things like information sources - encyclopediae, dictionaries, directories, catalogues - will become online sources, rather than printed codices. Most of them already are - I used to run the Yellow Pages for the majority of North America and that market is completely gone now. Same for the huge electronics supply catalogues of an earlier age. Wikipedia, Dictionary.com and similar resources have replaced any need for paper works which will become obsolete shortly after printing.

So when it comes to books, the ones - as far as I can see - likely to survive this modern transition in the here and now at least will be the ones we want to survive: the entertainment and individually-authored books. Due to the simple cost, they will likely be the ones to continue to be printed on paper. So your novels, cookbooks, memoirs, histories, etc. - everything you love in your local bookstore - are, as far as I can see, likely to remain on paper. (Keep in mind too that that scenario is based on the possibility that logging - the first link in the pulp-and-paper chain - ceases, which ain't gonna happen any time soon either.)

So the crisp ssshhh as you turn that first page, the dusty smell, the lovely rough-smooth feel of a real book under your fingertips and the sense of pleasant anticipation as you turn to Page One will remain until the amount of recycleable pulp in the world disappears...but there's so much out there, both as recycle and as fresh from the mill, I can't see it happening in my lifetime.

Not the most coherent of responses; it's pretty late for me. But as far as I can see of all the wood-pulp products to be phased out by modern technology; actual books with pages will probably be the very last to go...and that is a very nice thought to go to sleep on. :)

'Nite!

I am reading a pdf version of How to Win Friends and Influence People, and I found that using an online dictionary is way better than a paper one.
Dictionary.com is hugely popular due to some reasons.

danscope
2015-Oct-31, 03:37 AM
It's a great book, no matter how you read it.

Hold it's lessons close to you. May they serve you well.

Dan

publiusr
2015-Oct-31, 07:36 PM
You might like this:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i-5NhxYRqUI
http://www.arionpress.com/

Ironically, I might suggest they print patents--how tos in case of disaster.

Books of microfiche..plastic or metal books, something shades of the "long now."