Day: June 14, 2012

Like the Energizer bunny: The Luddite Chronicles, Part 4: E-books vs. real books

True confession: I’m a Luddite.  Luddites are opposed to technical innovations.  This is the fourth in a series of Luddite Chronicles.  For earlier posts, check these out:

1) Luddite Part 1: The fascinating story of the Luddites…well, slightly fascinating.
2) Luddite Part 2: Newspapers vs. Internet news.
3) Luddite Part 3: Seven reasons smart phones are dumb.
3b) A follow-up to 3: The Curse of the Smart Phone.

Today’s topic e-books vs. real books.  Just to start off, I need to acknowledge that e-books have some advantages:

1) Convenient searching and storage.
2) Instant downloads when purchasing.
3) Slightly cheaper.  (God Behaving Badly is about 50 cents cheaper electronically).

But remember, I’m a Luddite.  I’m opposed to innovations.

Here are 7 reasons why real books are better than e-books:

1) When I drop my copy of God Behaving Badly on the tile floor it still works.  But maybe you never drop things?

2) Coffee stains on books are a slight nuisance, but they don’t short-circuit the book.  But maybe you never spill things?  I probably should have combined this point with the previous e-books-are-fragile point, but I needed 7 points.

3) I don’t want to own the beta-max e-book reader when everyone else has the Blue-ray e-book reader.  The cover may look out of date, but you can still read the book.  How many videos did you have to re-purchase when you got that DVD player?  Perhaps the Kindle 47.0 that I purchase in 15 years will be able to read old electronic copies?  I doubt it.

4) To loan someone a copy of God Behaving Badly, I hand it do them.  I don’t need to make sure they have a compatible e-reader.

5) Waiting for my book in the mail teaches me patience.  Anticipation can be a good thing.

6) To copy pages from a real book I just find a copier and make copies.  (Now, I suspect someone going to tell me there’s an easy way to do this with e-books.)

7) My copy of God Behaving Badly never runs out of batteries.  Like the Energizer bunny it just keeps going, and going, and going…

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