what will become of books in the future.
Will everything be found in wikis and search engine results?
Some say that the traditional research book, filled with bits of knowledge, is going the way of the telephone book. We're all looking up phone numbers online these days, but if you found a number in Wikipedia, would you trust it?
Or will there be a new platform for the peer-reviewed journal that is reliable like the old-fashioned journal but easily accessed by all who seek information?
Bob Stein thinks that his SocialBook is the future of publishing. Writers and readers, getting together, changing the text, producing a book....sounds like a workshop gone mad, and if you've ever read a heavily workshop-ed manuscript, you know what kind of drivel comes out.
I don't know that I'd do much reading if that was all that was out there. Maybe it's designed more for instructional texts rather than novels.
Are we headed towards a digital future? Many have declared the hard-bound book to be dead, replaced by the e-book. That's not a startling revelation, considering the amount of revenue publishers are receiving from digital sales.
Book Expo America will introduce a new offering this year at its annual get-together, and it's all directed towards self-publishing, which has been revolutionized by the e-book.
Clearly, BEA recognizes that traditional publishing is changing, as the major publishers skew heavily towards what they think are blockbusters. Readers have to go out hunting for their own entertainment, for their preferred niche genre, and e-books are inexpensive. An important consideration when you're taking a chance on an unknown author.
But what else might be considered a book?
How about some DNA?
Christian Bok wrote a poem in DNA and injected it into a bacterium.
So in the future, might we all be infected with poetry? What if we were inoculated to protect us from lethal word combinations or cliches?
It's something to think about. But how would we read what is inside our cells when we've become the book?