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David Lee King

Book Publisher Looking to the Future



Update to the update: never mind – I figured it out.

Update: for some odd reason, I can’t seem to make a direct link to the blog post… the link to the actual blog is below – anyone know the direct link? Thanks!

I thought this was cool: Working Smart: The Death of Traditional Book Publishing.

Michael Hyatt is the CEO of Thomas nelson Publishers, a large christian publishing house. He has an interesting blog (frequently discusses GTD stuff, for those GTD fans). But this post is discussing the future of the paper book. Here’s a wonderful quote:

“While most publishers will admit that reference content is better accessed on the computer, almost all believe that the traditional non-fiction book or novel will never be replaced with a digital equivalent. I say, “baloney.” ”

It’s nice to see a forward-thinking CEO of a publishing house! He goes even further, and provides his ideal device – here are a few of his ideas:

- It looks similar to a tablet PC slate. No keyboard, no monitor, and it folds in half.
- It is the same size and thickness as a hardcover book, say 6″ by 9″ by 1/2″. Unfolded, it is 12″ x 9″ by 1/4″. It feels great in your lap. It can even be bent slightly like a book, so you can curl up on the sofa and read away.
- It uses a tablet PC interface with a built-in stylus that feels like a high-end pen. You can use it to make menu selections, enter text (via handwriting recognition), or highlight passages in books.
- It has a battery life of 12–18 hours.
- It completely replaces your computer and runs all your favorite applications.
- It has 256 gigabytes of flash drive storage. It has room for tens of thousands of songs, photos, movies—and books. Because it has no moving parts (unlike a hard drive), it is faster and more reliable.
- It includes a software application similar to iTunes for the purchase and download of books. Heck, maybe it’s just a modification of iTunes.
- It has a docking station that allows you to use a keyboard, mouse, external monitor, etc.
- It runs an Apple operating system. (obviously, he’s a Mac fan, too)

This isn’t really that far away from reality – combine the iPod Nano and some type of e-paper that’s being tested now, and you pretty much have what Hyatt is discussing.

So check out the post, and see what happens in the next few years. if publishing houses are talking like this, they’re preparing for change (hmm… that sounds familiar…). We should be, too.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • http://waltcrawford.name walt

    Without getting into the more extensive discussion: There’s a pretty major error in the original article.

    The Apple iPod Nano may have 16 2-Gb FlashRAM chips–but “b” in this case stands for bit, not byte; 16 2gb chips equals 32 gigabits or 4 gigabytes, the capacity of the Nano.

    I’d be real surprised if Samsung or anyone else was announcing 16GB (Gigabyte) flashram this year.

  • http://waltcrawford.name/ walt

    Without getting into the more extensive discussion: There’s a pretty major error in the original article.

    The Apple iPod Nano may have 16 2-Gb FlashRAM chips–but “b” in this case stands for bit, not byte; 16 2gb chips equals 32 gigabits or 4 gigabytes, the capacity of the Nano.

    I’d be real surprised if Samsung or anyone else was announcing 16GB (Gigabyte) flashram this year.

  • Kate

    Guess he didn’t think it was a cool as you did. The post is gone.

  • Kate

    Guess he didn’t think it was a cool as you did. The post is gone.

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