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Monday, March 27, 2017

The "The Hardcopy Book Vs. The EBook" Story

It was an ordinary day.  Carol is telling me about the book she is reading which I bought her for Christmas.  Book by Jodi Picoult which is one of the best books she has ever read.  And ... the book is a real honest to goodness book.  One that came off a printing press.  Since both our sons work in the printing trade, we both appreciate the fact that she enjoys paper books.  But, I must admit, I'm not a help in that category, since I have a Kindle and love it.  I can go on vacation and have a dozen or so books loaded on my Kindle which weighs about a pound while Carol might have eighteen paperback books that take up more space in our luggage than our beach noodles do.  So why do I prefer the Kindle over a hand-held paperback or why does Carol enjoy the feel of a real book instead of an electronic instrument in her hand.  A few years ago when the eReaders were introduced I thought that might be the end of the printed book, but the more I read, the more I find that the hand-held book is making a comeback and is preferred by more readers than the eBook.  My reasons for loving my Kindle are: Simple to buy a book; I can change the size of the type if I care; I can put it in a plastic baggie and don't have to worry about getting it wet; and the books cost less to buy.  Carol tells me that her reasons for having a real book are: She can hold the book and turn the pages; she can put an actual bookmark in the book when done reading; You can share them with others for no charge; and you look neater reading a real book.  So far we are even-steven!  Then I began looking online to find out what are the other reasons for one or the other.  Seems that the print books might edge the eReaders in reasons to buy one over the other.  Some reasons one way or the other are: Print books are great to share, as Carol said; eBooks take up less space. Print books are for life; You can read an eBook in the dark if you happen to have that feature on your reader. You can write in the margins of a print book or underline a sentence; Wait a minute - I can underline on my Kindle. Print books have jackets so you can see what others are reading; eBooks open up to where you finished reading and you don't have to worry about losing your bookmark. Reading a real book makes the story seem more real; Using an eBook eliminates having to cut down trees to make paper. Yes, but using the earth metals to make eBooks can be more harmful due to toxic metals and the energy needed to make the eBooks; Etc., Etc., Etc.  I guess you get the idea by now that we all have our reasons why we like one over the other.  Will we ever really agree with each other.  Nah!  But, that's OK. At least if the hard copy book returns to prominence in the future, my sons will benefit!!  It was another extraordinary day in the life of an ordinary guy. 

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