Anyone got a date for the reckoning?
With the launch of the i-pad comes a whole new wave of predictions of the demise of the printed page. A little premature methinks. Probably by about 100 years.
It's funny how all the designers of e-readers seem determined to mimic books as much as possible. Perhaps in a few years they'll have gotten around to designing one where you can turn the pages and write notes in the margins. Somehow, I don't see myself sitting up at three in the morning staring at a screen going "I'll just read one more chapter and then go to sleep".
Magazines. Now that's a different ballgame. The e-reader (colour version!) is ideal for that. 2000 word articles, illustration and photography are the perfect content for this technology. Even ads can be retained much as they are currently, with the added appeal of interactiveness. Editors, however will have to rethink how the information is laid out and how the content is to be consumed. Endless links for instance, are likely to be counter-productive to the easy digestion of the mag despite the temptation to throw everything at the reader.
Here's an interesting clip exploring some of the ways the publications might be presented: http://vimeo.com/8217311
Still on the topic of reckonings to come:
When are investors going to ask to see some moolah back for their investments in:
and the countless other free services out there.
Yeah, yeah I keep hearing the old chestnut about the hard pressed advertising world paying for everything, but ad revenues are way down in the real world never mind the fairy world of internet forums. Look at any of the above and tell me how you or I are paying for them. Flickr for instance will host gigabytes of my photos, so I can show them to whoever and how much do they charge? You-tube lets me look up clips they've retained of virtually anything ...and the cost? Even the mighty Google. What's the story there? Ads? almost non-existent. The paid entries? Who looks at them when you're searching for a cheap camera? Even if we did, the revenue from those sort of ads are in the local news-rag rates category.
Someday soon shareholders are going to start asking where all their money is and the streets are going to be buzzing with buck naked emperors diving for cover.
It'll be interesting to see how a generation that has got used to all this interactivity for free will react when they're suddenly asked to stump up.