We need atoms as well as bits

Nice article by BBC Commentator Bill Thompson discussing the transition to a digital world, and if we will ever get there.

"On first glance, the laptop and the typewriter are just two different ways of putting words in order, but there is a fundamental difference: the laptop remembers."


Library in a Pocket

With Amazon’s Kindle, readers can squeeze hundreds of books into a device that is smaller than most hardcovers. For some, that’s not small enough.

Many people who want to read electronic books are discovering that they can do so on the smartphones that are already in their pockets — bringing a whole new meaning to “phone book.” And they like that they can save the $250 to $350 that they would otherwise spend on yet another gadget.

“These e-readers that cost a lot of money only do one thing,” said Keishon Tutt, a 37-year-old pharmacist in Texas who buys 10 to 12 books a month to read on her iPhone, from Apple. “I like to have a multifunctional device. I watch movies and listen to my songs.”

Full story here.


Kindle Enters Canada

Story in Publisher's Weekly


Kindle PC Software

Kindle PC Software is available for download at Amazon. If you don't have a Kindle or an iPod Touch you can now access Kindle books as long as you have a PC or a laptop.

Taxonomy upgrade extras: 

Kindle readers beware - big Amazon is watching you read 1984

John Naughton says The ebook reader may have advantages over unwieldy printed tomes, but it has unexpected drawbacks. "You don't have to be a lawyer to know that this would not be tolerated in the real world of physical objects.Yet it's commonplace – indeed universal – in the world of information goods. And what makes it possible is the "End User Licence Agreement" (EULA) that most of us click to accept when we first use hardware, software or online services."


Kindle books for the iPod Touch

If you have an iPhone or an iPod Touch you can download the Kindle Reader app for free. With this app you can then read Kindle books on your iPhone/Touch.

To raise awareness of certain titles there are numerous books that are free for the Kindle. These are not just Project Gutenberg texts but titles by main line publishers. If you can get the Kindle app you have everything you need to access these free books.


Publishers and Booksellers Rally to Support eBooks and eReaders

eReaders and eBook players like the Kindle 2, Kindle DX and Nook are suddenly enjoying unprecedented support from book publishers, authors and retailers alike.

Why the recent shift? Given what analysts say is the increasingly depressing reality of old-world print business models, today’s publishers and booksellers (who’d once adopted a largely adversarial stance) are increasingly approaching this digital development with an “if you can’t beat them, join them” attitude. Mark Cull, publisher of Red Hen Press, admits that he’s gladly partnered with Amazon, giving the online mogul permission to digitize and reprint their books. Cull says that his company, a small but highly acclaimed literary outfit, is enjoying keeping up with the latest technological trends and advancements. “The entire printing world is leaning toward digitized publication with fascination,” said Cull. “We [at Red Hen Press] are actually very interested in the direction the publication of books is going.”

Full story here.


The Global Antitrust Battle Over Google's Library

The case presents a tangle of issues: how to create new markets for old books without shortchanging authors; how to nurture new technology without stifling competition; and how to preserve all that when one company — in this case, Google — is pioneering the revolution and could profit handsomely. One commentator, who supports the original settlement, has called it "the World Series of antitrust."

Kindle, Price War Changing the Way We Read

NewsHour with Jim Lehrer

In the latest chapter in the story of publishing, some important details -- how we read books, where we buy books, even how we define the word "book" -- are all being rewritten. Jeffrey Brown reports.

At the NewsHour website there is a full transcript. You can also see the full video via streaming or you can download the audio.


Ebooks making libraries popular again, can do nothing about your 80s scrunchie

Engadget: Ebooks making libraries popular again, can do nothing about your 80s scrunchie: A few forward-thinking libraries in the UK have started offering ebook downloads as an alternative to borrowing physical copies of books, and the local public's reaction has been one of overwhelming enthusiasm. Seemingly attracted by the idea of being able to collect and return books without having to actually attend the library, Brits have been eagerly joining up to the new scheme.


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