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The End of paper-based books

The Guardian has an article about the impending end of the traditional publishing paradigm. Cutting down trees for paper to print books will last at least another 14 years (assuming the forests can hold on that long) and will be replaced by a new and improved digital book format. This new format will end the traditional way that books are published. That will have far reaching consequences from how books are published and distributed. What will be the fate of bookstores after this technology revolution has taken place?

Here is the take of Microsoft’s Dick Brass:

Almost every IT expert in the world agrees that the book faces a revolutionary challenge from e-books and e-paper. According to Dick Carr, a retired Microsoft vice-president with wide experience of e-readers, “In the next five to 10 years, maybe much sooner, we'll see a decent, ultra-lightweight, portable e-paper device that allows book lovers to download titles straight from the internet, either legally or illegally….Tablet devices are getting lighter and cheaper. Eventually, and I'm betting it will be before 2020, one of these devices, like the iPod in music, will offer an experience close enough to paper to shift the paradigm to digital distribution. That will mark the beginning of the end of the age of paper books.”

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