Linda’s Tech Talk: E-reading the future (Nov. 12 2009)

Published in the November 12, 2009 issue of The Nugget.

Linda’s Tech Talk

E-reading the future
by Linda Hoang

    Once upon a time, you’d have to leave your home and go to a bookstore or library to buy or borrow your next novel conquest.
    This is not the case anymore, thanks to electronic readers.
    These tiny, library-bookstore-in-the-palm-of-your-hand devices let you access online bookstores and buy and read digital books, basically anywhere.
    Some might call it the book lover’s best friend. Others might call it the death of real books.
    Though electronic book readers have been around for some time, and have slowly but surely and impressively been improved upon over the years, this holiday season seems to be the season for e-readers.
    Currently Sony’s Digital Reader series dominates the Canadian e-reader market and come December, a brand new model is being launched. Just last week, Barnes & Noble announced their new, function-packed ‘Nook’ e-reader will be released at the end of the month.
    E-reader prices range from $200-$300 and e-books typically go for $9.99.
    Common e-reader features include a backlight, adjustable font sizes for easier reading, highlighting, writing your own digital notes or digitally bookmarking your page. WIth touchscreen e-readers, you can turn pages with a single swipe of your finger.
    Steve Haber, president of Sony’s Digital Reading division, says the goal of e-readers and e-books “is to expand the market and provide open access to what consumers want to read when they want to read it.”
    Regardless of e-readers’ neat features and attempts to look like a real book with paper-like displays, I don’t want to spend hours at school or work in front of a computer screen and then wind down for the night in front of a smaller computer screen.
    Call me old-fashioned, but I still enjoy the feel of a real book, the crack of the spine, and the good ol’ smell of worn paper.
    I also doubt that e-readers and e-books could actually fully replace real books and bookstores in the future, though e-stores and title selections are increasing all the time.
    Who knows, maybe you’ll find this article in a Nugget e-reader archive on your own little e-device in the future.

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