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Ah Hear Ya, Yeah, Yeah, Yeah

With apologies to The Beatles, I have noticed a trend lately among (I am presuming to be) fairly educated and sophisticated people on the ra...

10 March 2010

Print on Demand

As the existence of printed bound books continues to be controversial (cost of producing including death of trees, cost of transporting, cost of holding, not to mention how last century they are!), the Economist reports on a new gadget.  We have ordered through Ingram's Lightening Print more and more frequently, as it is definitely good for smaller, lower volume publishers.   As a bricks & mortar store, we are open to anything.  Heck, give us a chance to sell e-books, already!

Let us think about this article for a moment:  In a developed world, except for the cutting & binding, why would someone with an internet connection and a printer not want to do the printing off his own inkjet printer?

There also is an item from WSJOnline yesterday on how print magazines are fighting back with an ad campaign with several slogans, like "Surf the Internet, Swim a Magazine." Personally, I kind of think "Take a Bath with a Magazine" would work better, as I know of no one who would risk having a Kindle with him into the tub.

Another sensual point for the printed bound book: a customer who is part of a UK book-swapping site told me he with delight had just received some long out-of-print books from an elderly couple from Great Britain, saying "I just love the musty smell of old books."  So, feel, smell, look, heft,...

On a related note:  One of the products which Books on First is pulling back from are music CDs.   This is yet another area in which physical browsing is a lot of fun: looking at a colorful cover in a CD jewel box, pulling out a CD with an unfamiliar or a very familiar artist's name, turning the jewel box over and reading the title names of the tracks, deciding to splurge on this affordable luxury, taking it home, struggling with the cellophane wrapping, putting it in a player (or even a PC DVD drive), turning up the volume, sitting back, enjoying the art and reading the liner notes while listening to a found artist, maybe even ripping it for the MP3 player while simultaneously sharing the tracks with a roomful of people, drinking wine or peeling potatoes for an awesome New England-style clam chowder recipe,... the entertainment possibilities are endless.  Here's an online browsing you can do.  If you want to own a CD by one of NPR's 50 Great Voices, give us a call or drop us an e-msg; we are always still happy to order one in if it is readily available to us.

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