I don't know about you but I love books and reading. If there was a group called "Books Anonymous" for book addicts I would need to go along to the support groups! I find it hard to go into a bookshop without walking out with one or maybe three books in my hands even though I have our bookcase are full plus a few piles of still to be read books in my house!
A couple of years ago I came to the conclusion that I might have to try the digital route to owning books as our bookshelves were full and there was no room to add any more bookcases. Note to self: My next home should have its own library complete with one of those step ladders to run around the library to reach those shelves too high up to reach on tiptoes! Anyway my husband bought me a digital bookreader and I was a bit skepitical if I would still love my reading experience through a screen. It came with 100 free classic downloads and I must say it didn't take long to choose my 100 books! Now I also have a virtual book pile waiting to be read as well!
The digital bookreader didn't stop me enjoying the reading experience however I couldn't pass on the books that I loved! I can do this with my paper versions. I don't think there is a good solution to this and so I seem to still buy both paper and digital books or I try to borrow from the library in both formats.
Now I have another problem - my kids. All 3 have also taken on my obsession for books and they love to read and own their books but they don't agree with the digital format. They still prefer the paper books. And what about curriculum? My high schooler seems to lug around 30lbs of textbooks each day to and from school - she prefers the paper books (hardback covers) and doesn't want to read the textbooks online - even though in some cases these are provided by her school. I have to say I tend to agree with her as I like to read textbooks in my lap or at a desk and flip back and forward. This same daughter is going to take a class over the summer and I asked her did she want to have an online course or a textbook? She said without even hesitating - "textbook ... I don't like reading from a computer screen!" So textbook it will be!
So after these ramblings my question is - do you prefer digital or paper books/curriculum? Or do you find yourself, as I do, straddled with a foot in both camps?
In some cases it is probably convenient to visit digital books. Depending on the work that must be done. If matching many information from different books fast, for example.
Usually do not feel comfortable looking at a screen more than half an hour. On the contrary i can spend all my day reading a paper book.
I, too, have the biblioholic gene. And, I worked in bookstores during my college years. These two facts, taken together, explain why none of my friends wanted to help me move. I don't own much furniture, but there are always lots of heavy boxes to be hoisted.
Recently, I purchased a Nook. I just had a look, and note that I currently have 85 books loaded on it! And yet it's no heavier than it was when I got it. And, I can read in the dark. Not to mention that I can change the font size and the amount of space between the lines...which helps the old man (me) with the aging eyes.
Dead tree copies don't attract me much any more, actually, unless it's a really carefully-crafted book (which most aren't these days).
It *is* very frustrating to flip back and forth between sections of an electronic book. Hypertext technology being what it is, it should not be so...but I'm never very satisfied with the ease of it. So perhaps I should say that for fiction and recreational nonfiction, the ebook is great, and for more intense learning, I still prefer bound, printed matter.
Thanks Jeff for the reply. I have you beat with 180 books on my book reader (Sony book reader - if we're going to name them!) which certainly cuts down on the bookshelf issue however when I have read a great book I want all my friends to read it and I want to share it - I can't do that if its an electronic book. That irks me! But I agree that generally fiction is good in the digital format but intense learning material is best on paper.
One other thing, why are some digital books more expensive than their paper bound cousins?? Another "irk" of mine. I will not pay more for the ebook if I can get it cheaper on paper...