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The future of jotting notes.

March 12, 2009

Today’s topic kind of ties in with the little funny I posted a link to yesterday.

There are approximately three camps right now when it comes to technology’s effect on books and those that write and read them.

Camp One, we’ll call them the technophobes, think that the literary world is going to Hell in a handbasket (to borrow a tired cliche) because computers and technology are killing the printed book.  They refuse to sample an E-book.  They’d cut off an arm before considering it, in many cases.  A Kindle?  Ha!  Not until Dallas gets more rain than Seattle and London combined.  Don’t even get them started on POD technology.  Books are supposed to be printed in runs of five figures or more.  That’s how we know the editors will reject the stuff not worth trying to sell, right?

Camp Two, we’ll call them the technophiles, think that it is high time someone innovated the book (and the process of making them) beyond this primitive thing we call “paper”.  I mean, geez, Shakespeare wrote on paper for crying out loud.  Paper has been around for thousands of years, why are modern books still printed on such a venerable medium?  You can carry hundreds of E-books the same way you can carry one from the “old days”.  POD, to them, is a godsend (if you just have to have a paper copy).  Anyone with a bit of computer know-how and a keyboard can find a self-publishing company and publish anything their little heart desires.  Will it sell?  Who cares?  It’s published!

Camp Three, we’ll call them the realists or the geniuses, think somewhere in between.  This is the camp in which I pitch my tent.  I love me some technology.  Hell, I’m a Computer Engineering major so I’d better. 🙂  I read E-books.  I even have a system set up now where I carry my “MyWriting” folder around on my PDA and use it in downtimes to work on mss, chapter outlines, character sheets, etc.  Ask my wife sometime about all the *censored* print books I have, though.  I still like the smell of bookprint.  I like the feel of the paper page when I flip it.

So, I’m not sure if it’s me or if this post is one long ramble but the point I’m trying to make is I think it’s silly that we even have a debate over E-books v. Print books.  Technology, barring Einstein’s prediction of WWIII, is here to stay and the longer it stays the more of our lives it will touch.  Once libraries computerized the card catalog it was just a matter of time until someone digitized the books you find in it.  I also don’t think the printed book is going anywhere.  There are too many people who love printed books and the pass that love down to even some technophile kiddies.

Both can, and in my opinion will, coexist peacefully by providing the reader with more format choices than they’ve ever had before.  So, not to date myself too much, but “Can’t we all just get along?”  🙂

Really, this post was going to just be to brag about my “take my notes anywhere” system (hence the title) where I don’t run the risk of damaging the little notebooks I used to use.  Oh, well, I ramble sometimes.  🙂

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