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The times they are a changing

Technology is not the only thing that drives change. A lot of it is dictated by economics. eReaders didn't really catch on until they were fairly cheap. Cell phone companies have learned that charging for monthly usage means they can subsidize the cost of the phone, and sexy new phones mean new customers.

The more people get used to digital reading, the more they may opt for the convenience of ebooks over print. But of course, all book lovers have accumulated a store of print books in all those years when there were no Kindles, Nooks, or Kobos. How can we enjoy all the benefits of digital reading while our homes are full of shelf after shelf of old print books?

Here's how.  This OpticBook scanner is made specifically for scanning books. It has a very thin bezel on the scanning bed, so you can scan almost all the way to the spine, and it's designed to correct for the curved, distorted text and shadows you get trying to photocopy or scan books on a normal copier/scanner. It even comes with OCR software packages so you can produce searchable PDFs.

This scanner will scan a page in seven seconds.flat, and it costs only $300!  Spend a few hundred bucks and several hours a week, and in a year or two, you can turn your entire print library into a digital library!  I can see this being an option for boomers who need to downsize and other folks who are ready to make the leap to ditching paper. 
Which is not to say everyone is eager to get rid of physical books, but for those who are, the tech is already reasonably priced. 

Addendum: This announcement from Gollancz is an example of publishers wanting to provide a way to get those ebooks on my ereader in a way that gets them more money.  Who can blame them?  Not me!  Besides, if they do it right, they will be truly digital instead of just images of pages. 

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( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 30th, 2011 03:13 am (UTC)
I sense a tremor in the Force.

This sounds like the perfect pirating device, if you don't feel like hacking an already existing ePub file.
Jul. 30th, 2011 04:26 am (UTC)
Well, you bring up an interesting point. Is it piracy to take a book you own and transform it into a PDF if you don't give or sell that PDF to anyone else?
Jul. 30th, 2011 09:37 am (UTC)
Well, I say no, but the music/video companies kind of suggest otherwise with the way they've been approaching the digital age.
The publishing industry has been approaching digital copies in a different fashion than physical books. With a physical book, you own the thing. A digital copy, on the other hand, you only get the right to use it, not the copy itself.

If you rip a book --an entirely new context here-- or a library book or someone's copy and then share that, are you then entering into the hazy realm where you only have the right to use the copy but not own it?
Jul. 30th, 2011 03:26 pm (UTC)
I agree it's hazy. Laws take time to catch up to technology.
Jul. 30th, 2011 01:54 pm (UTC)
You are technofabulous.
Jul. 30th, 2011 03:25 pm (UTC)
Yeah, but I am also lazy. I'm not throwing out any paper books that I like until I can wave my ereader at them and BOOM they're digital.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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