Thursday 31 May 2007

e-What now?

I do believe it's Thursday, and that means that I will be Booking Through Thursday. Which is lucky, because my brain is still somewhat addled, and I'm not up to genuine thought all of my own. What a blessing this website is, for the ill and uninventive.
  • Do you read e-Books?
  • If so, how? On your computer, or a PDA?
  • Or are you a paper purist? Why?
Well, my answer to the first question is quite short. No, I don't. I'm not entirely sure what e-Books are, and, to be frank, I don't really want to know. They're an amazing boon for those with sight-trouble, to whatever extent, as are much easier to transform into audio formats - but, for myself, I will never voluntarily read something on screen which is available on paper.

Why? Hmm.

I suppose it's partly snobbery, if book-media-snobbery is a valid subsection, but mostly e-Books offer none of the things I want from books, aside from the content. That might sound a little silly, but, as they say, "you can't curl up with a computer". This is a blogger who has bought books on the basis of their smell. I don't like the smell of new books much, (by the by, have started the O'Farrell now), but older ones... where will I get the intrinsic history of secondhand books in the computing arena? An Amstrad doesn't cut it.

Howsabout yourself? Obviously anyone reading this has access to a computer, but do you/would you consider e-Books?

P.s. sorry for lack of sketches of late - take more thought and energy than are currently available. I lied yesterday, this is definitely a Man-Cold.


  1. Hey kid. I was thinking about you and your book-smelling, trying to come up with a crossword clue for 'book' based on 'smell fine'. See what you can do.

  2. I so agree. I never willingly read a book on a computer though I have done so in desperation for research purposes. Nothing can ever beat paper.

  3. The one case in which I think electronic books are more useful is for texts which would either be difficult to get old of otherwise, or which are being distributed widely - bytes are much cheaper than paper, so it's fairly trivial to get texts out very quickly. Project Gutenberg (google it) has a whole heap of public domain electronic texts, including the complete works of Arthur Conan Doyle, which could be very useful, especially as it lets you put the books into any format (I currently have a couple of Sherlock Holmes books on my mobile phone). I do agree though, for convenience and atmosphere it's hard to beat an actual physical book...

  4. I agree with you. On occasion I have signed up with those free websites that email you a chapter a week of a book; I'll read a few sentences and never open the emails again. It is just not for me, the entire sensory experience is gone not only smell, but the feel of the book and appearance of the cover. Oh how I love books. But not online. That is only a good place to order them.

  5. I have to say, there are moments of desperation where an electronic book can be a lifesaver. I never thought I would find myself saying that...but never say never, I guess. Of course, that said, give the option, I would always choose my lovely paper books every time!

  6. I am so sad I HAVE made use of Project Gutenberg. I printed out some short stories and read them on the train.


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