With the proliferation of eBooks and mobile reading devices, the act of sitting down and burying ourselves in a good book will never be quite the same again. But are we are being too serious when we weigh their pros and cons?
eBook readers are growing in popularity and in most cases, you are able to store your downloaded books and read them on an iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, Blackberry, Android or even your laptop.
This flexibility is one of the most attractive features of electronic reading. Gone as well are the days of lugging around heavy books when traveling, or for that matter, even having to decide which books to bring with you to your various destinations.
No matter how convenient eBooks become, however, many will continue to fiercely criticize the new technology. Reading is such a physical experience for so many bibliophiles that the act is greatly diminished when things like the feel of the pages, the texture of the cover and the smell of the ink are taken away.
How can eBooks develop in order to satisfy these missing qualities?
1. Simulate the experience of a well-used, favorite book, since many booklovers dislike the never-changing, cold feel of the digital screen. The eBook reader display could start to appear worn and ripped after you have read a particular volume hundreds of times. A coffee stain could appear in a key area of some of the pages, and the program could insert a virtual pet bite mark. Eventually, some pages could even fall out and completely disappear.
2. With eBooks, there’s no way to show off your impressive collection of classics you’ve never even attempted to read as we do today on our coffee tables and bookshelves. Ebook applications could sync with all your social media accounts and constantly bombard all of your friends with announcements of your collection until they murmur in awe at how intellectual and cultured you must be.
3. eBook readers could provide a feature that makes the device temporarily heavier based on the size of the books you have downloaded. This way, you could use your eTextbooks and dictionaries to flatten your posters and serve as a paperweight just as you do with your real ones. (This feature might prove to be the most difficult to implement…)
eBooks will continue to unveil new features to make the experience more rewarding, and it will be tickle city to track how well they are catching on.
Do you prefer eBooks or physical books? Will electronic books decisively overtake their physical counterparts sooner rather than later?