The subject of e-books. I have many many thousands of them and I have a huge interest in them. Coupled with this there is nothing I like better than to sit down with a cup of coffee and get stuck in too good old read. I chose this subject because I wanted to see where I myself stood in the realm of the pros and cons of e- books. Do you think that e-books will replace printed books? Please discuss the pros and cons of each. E-books or Electronic books are not as new as we may think. They officially date back to the very early sass’s when Michael S Hart a student at the time typed out the
American declaration of Independence into the University of Illinois’ mainframe for free distribution giving birth to project Gutenberg. (* Michael S Hart). So they have been around for quite a while now. My essay will be split into two parts. The pros firstly and then the con’s of e-books. I will wrap up with my opinion as to whether or not I think that e-books will replace printed books. In favor of e-books I must begin with the green element. Our planet relies on oxygen and one of the greatest sources of providing oxygen is trees.
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They are like a filter in the sense that they take in the harmful elements and give off that most recipes gas that we all need to breathe in order to continue living. Most plants do the same for us but trees are so much bigger than plants so they provide much more of this necessary resource. So because e-books are not printed no tree has to be sacrificed in the way that they are for printed material. The next plus I would attribute to e-books are the storage factor. For example the Bible which is around sixty six different books can fit very comfortably on an ordinary CD (compact disc).
The physical size of this is tiny compared to the actual size of a printed Bible. Multiply this by a thousand books and things start to be put into perspective. In fact if they were stored only on a computed there would be no extra physical space whatsoever required. They would reside on the computer’s hard drive and live there quite happily disturbing no one and be totally unobtrusive. Another plus is the fact that because they are digital every copy is exactly the same as the original and this is so much quicker than printing another one. So coupled with this is the hugely important fact that they never go out of print.
They are always available. Nowadays we have even invented devices that will represent the physicality of an actual book. Probably the most popular of these devices is the Kindle. See image to the left. This can store thousands of e-books and provide functionality such as marking the page for you, storing them in different categories along with a myriad of other functions way too many to mention. The Kindle and other devices are not much bigger than an actual printed book itself and are much thinner than an actual book. A complete collection can be stored on this device making it very cost effective and ally neat.
They are probably one of the most common Christmas gifts on the market today. So all in all the advent of the e-book has been quite a revelation. Apart from the general reading books that have come out as e-books many other different types of literature are employing the e-book genre if I may use that word. Manuals of all types including computer manuals, system manuals, software manuals to mention but a fraction all use the e-book prodigy. This as already mentioned saves so much on the earth’s resources that the benefit can not be ignored.
The pros in this essay are only couched upon given the scope of the assignment but suffice it to say the material discussed portrays some of the main advantages of the e-book. As far as the cons are concerned I think that one main scenario will answer this. Just picture yourself lying on one of those wicker sun loungers in a hidden cove somewhere on the Cayman Islands sipping your strawberry daiquiri with little ornaments hanging on the side of your glass. The sun is gently browning the skin you have exposed to it and a gentle breeze is carrying the delightful holiday smells to your nose. All is well.
Suddenly your Kindle begins to emit little beeps alerting you to the fact that your battery needs recharging. Gloom sets in and you say a couple of French words to yourself as you were really enjoying Cecilia Earner’s latest novel. And now there is no hope of finding out what happens until you recharge the machine and pick up where you left off. Get the picture? In this scenario there is no alternative to a good old printed book that you can happily leaf through the pages and while away your holiday and get yourself lost in the story. There is no substitute to a real book for those avid readers.
And then of course there are instances where only the printed page is permissible such as legal documents and pretty much anything that requires an actual signature. Also for educational institutions such as schools and colleges printed matter is a requirement for their syllabi and one must purchase the required reading list or workbooks. The printed word has been around for a long time now and I am sure with the technology we now possess substitutes for paper are being researched and it will not be long before some new synthetic material will be found to replace paper and save the trees while still retaining the
Book as a Book. So to wrap up there are so many advantages to the e-book and it is plain to see how useful they are and indeed will continue to be so. In terms of resource saving, storage, digital copying, content and many other ways they are both practical and a very helpful addition to the literary areas of our living. But while all this is true I do not believe they will ever replace printed books. So many people take so much satisfaction from turning page after page of their books and the whole ritual goes hand in hand with the actual reading of the printed matter. So don’t throw out your library.