Monday, October 29, 2012

Print is fighting back. Why Ebooks Are Inspiring A New Age Of Print. From @HuffPostBooks

Ebooks, like physical books, have weight. That is, according to a computer scientist at UC Berkeley, who calculated in 2011 that a 4GB ebook reader filled with 3,500 ebooks weighs a billionth of a billionth of a gram more than if it were empty of data - a difference that is approximately the same weight as a molecule of DNA.

The same number of physical books would weigh about two tons.

Ebooks aren't only lighter than their print counterparts, they're also cheaper, instantly accessible around the world, and unlimited in supply. For these reasons and more, the growth in American ebook usage has been swift and inevitable - earlier this year, Amazon released figures saying that, for every 100 physical books sold on its site, it had sold 114 ebooks.

However, print is fighting back. Now that physical books have lost their monopoly on long-form storytelling, they aren't disappearing. Instead, booksellers, publishers and readers are taking a closer look at why we like books at all.

A series of new titles out this fall celebrate the book and the bookstore, including The Books They Gave Me (Free Press), My Bookstore: Writers Celebrate Their Favorite Places to Browse, Read, and Shop (Black Dog & Levanthal), Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore (FSG), My Ideal Bookshelf (Little, Brown), Judging A Book By Its Lover (Harper Perennial), One For the Books (Viking) - celebrations of reading and owning physical books.

What makes them different from their digital counterparts?

It may sound obvious, but books exist - in a way that memory on a microchip does not. Enduring physical presence is no small thing in an age when information appears on a screen, then changes, evolves, and maybe even disappears. And as efficient as ebook retailers are, clicking to purchase is a fairly soulless affair in comparison to the pleasures of browsing in a bookstore.

Read on here....

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