What Will the Death of the Physical Book Mean?

amazonkindle.jpgIn a characteristic move on my part, I have already started obsessing over Amazon’s new Kindle and plan to get one ASAP but Veken seems to think I should wait for more reviews (he’ll force me to wait in line first day at Apple for an iPhone but wants me to wait for this, go figure)…anyway this quote perfect encapsulates possible problems with instant updates and other new features of the new e-book (and dare I say it, possible political implications for such “upgrades” in reading technology):

Another possible change: with connected books, the tether between the author and the book is still active after purchase. Errata can be corrected instantly. Updates, no problem.

Newsweek‘s article on the Kindle, “The Future of Reading”

Day by day and almost minute by minute the past was brought up to date. In this way every prediction made by the Party could be shown by documentary evidence to have been correct; nor was any item of news, or any expression of opinion, which conflicted with the needs of the moment, ever allowed to remain on record. All history was a palimpsest, scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary.

–from George Orwell’s 1984 (Book 1, Chapter 3)

Check out these other quotes {via dive into mark} that make you wonder if Amazon’s Jeff Bezos made the wisest decisions developing his version of the “book of the future.” Though I can tell you that as an author I won’t miss books as objects much, they are cumbersome and horribly difficult to store.

Btw, I don’t give much credence to the recent Kindle reviews by techies (such as this or this), since they obviously don’t suffer from the same book embargo I’ve placed on myself not to bring new tomes into the house (well, not as many as before). The fact is that the Kindle may finally allow me to buy new books again, without guilt! Oh…perchance to dream….

Though I will say that the Kindle looks like it was designed by Microsoft in the mid-1990s…eck!

Fortune has an interest take on the Kindle and thinks it has already achieved something no other electronic reading device has…”iPod” status.

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