May 28, 2009

Have You Read a Good Book Lately?

Guest post by Jim Moulton

In his May 28, 2009 piece, “Company’s ‘ATM For Books’ Prints On Demand,” NPR’s Rob Gifford reported on a company called On Demand Books. I listened with interest, a book lover and technology user for sure, but I have not yet come over to Amazon’s Kindle or Sony’s Reader.  I am still a person who doesn’t get on a plane without an old fashioned book in my bag or pocket.

In the piece we heard Marcus Gipps, floor manager of Blackwell’s bookstore on London’s Charing Cross Road describe the machine, called Espresso, this way –  “Effectively, it’s a great big office printer stuck to a rather lovely in my opinion, but perhaps not the most aesthetically pleasing collection of technology…” Gifford goes on to say, “The printer runs at about 100 pages a minute… The machine then sticks and binds the pages together itself and — out comes a book. A real book, just like all the other books on Blackwell’s shelves.”

There just seems to be something about paper.  The feel of the book in my hand, the sound of the pages being turned, the smell of a new book, the smell of an old book. I suppose I am just proof, once again, that Alan Deutschman got it right in his May 2005 article in FastCompany magazine entitled “Change or Die.”  People resist change.  And I am people.  You are people. What change are you resisting?

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2 thoughts on “Have You Read a Good Book Lately?

  1. 1 — Thanks for the link to the “Change or Die” article. It is really interesting. And, I came upon your blog post immediately after reading an article in “Stanford Social Innovation Review” about some of the funding priorities of the Rockefeller Foundation. They are working with organizations who are working with organizations who are trying to foster innovation (fancy word for change). These three articles today are timed right as we are working in my community on strategies for constructive change. And, I am working personally on getting back to the weight room — a personal change that has to happen. And, as a matter of fact I did READ a good book lately, THE 21 IMMUTABLE LAWS OF LEADERSHIP by John C. Maxwell. The reason for caps of READ is that I am pretty much hooked on books by ear, which make exercising such a different experience.

  2. It’s true that people resist change but there is something about books – the touch, the feel, … that people like you and me prefer and help physical books remain as relevant as they were a century ago.

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