Post Note on Used Bookstore

During my interview with the used bookstore owner, we also discussed ebooks.  He thinks that ebooks are going to put him out of business or turn his inventory into genuine antiques.

‘Ah, the unshakable faith in a static future is all about us.  I don’t know what tomorrow will bring, but I’m certain that things will change.  They always do.’

My opinion:  Ebooks still have to be charged.  Granted it’s a small amount of electricity, but I think even small amounts of power will become a BIG issue in the future, so don’t throw away your paperbacks just yet. Perhaps it shall come to pass that my friendly supplier of used reading could find himself sitting on a gold mine.

Do you think the day will come when we’d rather have a hard-copy over a digital doodad, a bicycle over a car, and a hand cranked radio over a big screen TV?

BTW: Check out Jon Vagg’s blog on how to make some homegrown Electricity.


3 thoughts on “Post Note on Used Bookstore

  1. I do believe many folks who now use ebooks, cars, and TVs without appreciating what they are will one day be forced to retreat to simpler things…

    Though, no matter how long this stringency lasts, I am firm in my knowledge that it will be a temporary condition on the path of humanity’s evolution…

  2. A couple of thoughts on this. E-books at the moment can’t legally be re-sold; there can only be a used book market for physical copies. At the same time, while things have been improving, most of the formats still don’t support diagrams or illustrations that well, so paper remains a good medium for some types of books. Then there’s preference for tactile books, the smell of paper and ink, etc etc. In the last year I’ve probably bought about 50 paper books – roughly half new and half secondhand, and only 3 e-books.
    I suspect in future ways of generating electricity will change as the cost structure changes, both in terms of solar power etc. and more houses having import/export meters, and potentially in terms of low-voltage systems being wired in for the 90% of electronic items that currently use 12v but then have to be supplied with a mains transformer. Ironically the developed world may start to take its cue from the developing world where a lot of the innovative ideas (you mentioned the hand cranked radio) have really found their niche,
    I have a memory of being in the Himayalas 20 years ago and watching someone pedal an exercise bike to charge up a battery so the staff of the hotel way out in the sticks could watch a football match on their satellite TV…
    Both the used book sellers in my small town have ceased trading in the last year or so, leaving the field to charity shops. But I’m sure in the right circumstances there will again be a market for used books, especially as local authority library services are slated for huge cutbacks in the UK. Just not quite sure what those circumstances are going to look like in say 5 or 10 years time!

  3. See, everybody. I told you Jon Vagg is a genius and a writer too.

    I like the bicycle idea: keep the fat off and be productive. I saw that bicycle trick in the movie Soylent Green. (Often wondered if ‘Soylent’ supposedly stood for a soy-like product. Ah, that turned out to be propaganda.)

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