Will the Internet (and sites like this) ever eliminate books?

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Posted by Erol Abit on May 09, 1999 at 14:41:52:

Behind such questions, I sense a sort of fear, particularly fears of someones such as authors, publishers and so on.

Sure it is more comfortable to read a book in our chairs, beds, etc than to read in front of this aquarium. But this does not mean that a rug book author has to publish his/her book in paper. An alternative way can be:

The author writes his/her book onto digital medium, i.e. onto floppy disks or CDRoms. The author sells the book disket directly to customers. No publisher cost, no initial investment, no pre-organization, no real advertisings. Just home based. Also, everybody has chance to do this. Besides, the author can sell the books directly and simply by using internet. He/she puts the book under a web or ftp site and customer pays while downloading the book. For me, it will be cheaper and faster to own it. For author, there will be more selling.

It doesn't matter which format (.pdf, .ps, .tex, .doc, etc) the author uses since all these formats can be converted to the others. I who will buy "rug book" disk or file from internet can convert original format to what format I like. Also, I can print out using the type of paper I like when I want to read it in the bed.

After all these advantages of books on disks or on internet (choosing text format and paper type, faster owning, cheaper cost, selling more copy, etc), why so fear? Don't worry the diameters of publishers' stomachs have became big enough...


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