Today's Shelf Awareness newsletter was chock full of articles on e-readers. Barnes and Noble announced their version, the Nook, will debut at the same price as the Kindle. There was yet another article discussing Kindle's international reader:
As Amazon launched the international edition of its Kindle, Retail Week considered whether e-readers "will bring about bookshops' demise, or if the world of print will prove resilient."
I sincerely hope the world of print never actually goes the way of cassette tapes and 8-tracks. BUT, you never know. And all this new e-reader technology makes me a bit nervous. While I'm normally a gadget girl and love the latest television, iPod, and photographic equipment, I love the feel of a book in my hands. I've considered the idea of purchasing an e-reader just because I'm drawn to the technology of it. I'm not a snob about the idea of an e-reader. I see it's value, especially as a travel companion, or for magazines and newspapers. But I don't really travel that often (at least by anything other than car--where books are still quite appropriate), and I don't really read magazines and newspapers anyway. So I haven't taken the plunge.
I just really hope all this e-technology and book price-slashing doesn't eventually push the publishing world to abandon print all together. I know everyone is struggling, newspapers have shrunk. And I have to admit I read most of my news online, just because its more convenient and I feel like I'm saving a tree by not having all that paper around the house (though I recycle it anyway). While I also know that trees are cut down to create the paper books are printed on, I'm somehow more okay with that. ;-)
I also think about my kids. I absolutely LOVED disappearing into the world of a book as a child. I was known to spend a whole weekend curled up somewhere in the house reading away. I somehow can't picture doing that with an e-reader. And my kids are already bombarded by so much technology and stimuli in their environment from television, to computer games, to video games, to using Smart Boards at school (even in preschool!). I think it's fantastic for them to take a time out from all that visual stimuli and sit down with a book, pouring over the pictures and words.
Just felt the need to ramble on this topic this morning. :-)