elephant in the universe
Books reflect our current views of the universe and the universe has never been bigger. Contending interpretations were mutually expanded with observation of a boson or a particle that lends mass to others. This accentuated an ambiguity of mechanical and field resonance explanations.
Books in the medieval era exemplified a smaller view of the universe. This was a view of eternal, fixed intentions and books were rare, liturgical and retrospective. Romance intruded and sciences to extend the explanatory range of books. By the nineteenth century books were numerous and diverse in content and reflected a machine age.
Today books have multiplied and diversified beyond that busy time. Now every person is an author and every text display grows to book sizes. This trend also reflects an expanding universe that assimilates all human interpretations. Standard models and field resonance models are both vindicated and accumulated. At the same time books diversify further over multiple display and delivery formats. The book becomes an evidence of our accumulating understanding of the ways of the universe. It is a boson too.
The electric book and electric car require recharging. This is done during passive periods of storage. A menagerie of recharging cords required of different reading devices may eventually become standardized but there remains the obstacle of timely recharging plug-ins. Lacking is inductive charging used with the electric toothbrush. Inductive charging would better approach the passive storage efficiency of paper books.
Another passive feature would be a storage screen catalog display. Such storage labeling would disclose resident content especially among multiple devices. This feature would return shelving configurations to an earlier side display of stored books.
Also potential would be disposable screen books. This option with fixed resident content would provide rights and commerce efficiencies associated with physical books although disposal costs would differ. Disposability is actually the current business plan since device upgrades and device obsolescence already provoke regular replacement.
Cloud content is suggestive of screen book perspective conveyed to physical books. The physical book library is cloud-like with its exceptional storage passivity but physical access if far from screen efficiency. Robotic retrieval and automated reformatting can bring more efficiency to physical access.
The same screen to print influence is suggested by current ambient lighting of e-ink devices. The combination of reflected electrophoric and back-lit phosphor device options, aside from display implications, is now being developed in composite configuration. The current composite is a retro-fix but synthesis of electrophoric text in a LCD display may influence future book reading.
Revised, corrected and up-dated these books are still classics. Future of the Book: A Way Forward debates the interdependence of print and screen books. Adventures in Book Preservation introduces a hybrid approach to library preservation and book conservation. Each is $10 and worth it. (+$3 shipping) Send no money, just a shipping address to iowa dot book dot works at mchsi.com.