Lately I have been really thinking over my total embrace of the Amazon Kindle and whether there is some intrinsic value in a physical printed book. I find the new e-readers to be liberating in some ways, able to self-publish more easily it really drives down the cost of the work. And in theory it shortens the gap between the author/creator and the audience. I have created effectively two blogs that allow me to do this and I have gotten some 'traffic' though little feedback in the form of comments. I am either doing something very right or very wrong, though the traffic meter tells me people keep coming back.
But then I think about the 'limited' sense of something only being electronic, say if I were to self-publish a novel through Amazon then it would have limited value for the reader/person who purchased it. As of yet, I don't believe rights are transferrable for materials so resell is not possible. This is also a publisher's wet dream. But still, with the access to materials out of the copyright protection the publisher is effected by what can be 'sold'.
A physical book though can be left somewhere, can be resold, and ultimately ends up in a thrift store where it can be bought for much less than the cover price. I have bought many books this way. Many books I have still yet to read.
And so I reconsider the sense of an e-book versus a printed book and I have to conclude that the printed material has some intrinsic value in its very real and material sense of being. This is particularly important for materials that may go out of style or otherwise be censored as it has been the printed works, or the oral traditions that saved many books that 'we' now consider cannon.
Regardless you have to start somewhere and yes, if given the opportunity I think I would move into the actual printed book for my writing as I think this would further serve its cultural importance/endurance and maintain some of that intrinsic value.
I think that's a very interesting take on the subject. Personally, I just love being able to turn the pages of a book, the ability to scribble down my own notes and opinions in the margins, the smell, etc. Basically I love books. But at the same time, if eBooks were my only option, I'd read those too. :)
Yeah, thanks for the comment, I have recently been reading an actual book and been writing down notes about things I want to research further. I still don't know where I stand with the eReader(s) and using it for notes. I think though if I taught a class I would explore having my students get eReaders and classic books for free through the websites.
That's actually what I use my eReader for mostly. I get classic books I want to read, and then if I like them enough, I buy a hard copy. It's the same thing I used to do at libraries, but now there's less chance of my back seizing up because I'm carrying too many books. Which is often a problem for me. But I'm the same about taking note of things I want to look up later. Especially with new vocabulary. I keep several notebooks, one of which is a running log of new vocabulary for me to study later, I also take note of things I might want to include in my own original works. Oh, and I was happy to leave a comment, as I am now. I think the subject is quite interesting.
I think that e-readers are great tools for people to use for reading. Like John once said, "I don't care how people read, I care if they read." Personally, though, I prefer books to e-readers. There is a certain satisfaction that comes from finishing a long book and being able to display it proudly on your shelf. I also think that a goal everyone should have is to amass their own personal library. Size matters not, it can be two books, it can be two thousand.
Gosh, I haven't been on Nerd Fighter for a while, sorry bout not replying earlier. In reading over my original comment I am struck by the thought of how I came across so many good books in a thrift store and how digital companies such as Amazon and Barnes and Noble, Apple, have yet to fall in line with copyright protections for the person who purchases a work. As it is digital it is difficult to prove a file hasn't been copied or shared and that reselling is not piracy. But also, I came across many great books, some life changing, in thrift stores that I would have not otherwise found, especially for cheap. That having been said, there is so much to gain from ebooks as I plan to publish my own.
If you intend to go beyond 1000 books, e-books are kinda a necessity. my eLibrary was, this summer, @ 3TB (3000 GB) in October I expanded it to 6TB (TeraBytes). Wanting to stay with linux (the OS of my network) -- I chose an Android pad. There are a ton of ebooks out there for free.