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Apple Nets 350K Textbook Downloads In 3 Days 376

Posted by Soulskill
from the but-what-do-we-leave-on-the-teacher's-desk dept.
redletterdave writes "On Jan. 19, Apple introduced iBooks 2, its digital solution to the physical textbook. In the first three days of release, users have downloaded more than 350,000 e-textbooks from the new platform, and more than 90,000 users have downloaded the authoring tool to make those e-textbooks, called iBooks Author. It makes sense that Apple's iBooks 2 platform is taking off in such a short period of time; there is very little merit to the physical textbook, and the education industry has been waiting for a viable solution like this for some time. Physical textbooks lack portability, durability, accessibility, consistent quality, interactivity and searchability, and they're not environmentally friendly."
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Apple Nets 350K Textbook Downloads In 3 Days

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  • Not to mention... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bhtooefr (649901) <{bhtooefr} {at} {bhtooefr.org}> on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:00PM (#38798357) Homepage Journal

    ...that you can resell a physical textbook, sometimes, and that cuts into textbook publisher profits.

    • by twotacocombo (1529393) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:08PM (#38798455)
      Which is why they come out with a 'new' edition every couple of years, rendering the previous editions 'obsolete' and therefore worthless on the secondary market.
      • by Synerg1y (2169962) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:14PM (#38798527)

        Yep, but remember some books like say your biology textbook, benefit greatly from this refresh, but a writing book??? Sounds like a partial racket, confirmed by 1k+ college textbook bills. Irregardless of research, some people are making bank on this.

      • I have a nice little anecdote on that topic.

        Being a Version Management fan, I got hold of some Second Edition of a Psych textbook back in the day, when I think the class was up to Fourth Edition. Besides saving the (then cheap!) $90, it in fact was bigger and better! I checked the introductions. Second Edition: "Blah Blah thank you to the 40 people who reviewed this, and my grant". Fourth Edition: "Streamlined with less common content removed for better initial presentation".

    • by mjwx (966435) on Tuesday January 24, 2012 @04:26AM (#38802415)

      Physical textbooks lack portability, durability, accessibility, consistent quality, interactivity and searchability, and they're not environmentally friendly."

      Bwahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha,

      Oh wait, their serious.

      Durability:
      I still have textbooks from 1997,
      My boss has a textbook from 1956 (borrowed from a university library, hate to imagine what 56 years of late fees look like).
      My texbook gets rained on, 95% chance I can use it again.
      I have a pile of broken Ipads out the back, they aren't even 3 years old yet.

      Accessibility.
      Ipads have about 6-7 hours of usable battery life (yes fanboys, this is what they get under real world conditions, especially after the battery has gone through a few charge (read: abuse) cycles).
      Books dont run out of batteries and become unusable.

      Not Enviromentally Friendly:
      Right, we all know paper can be recycled right. Then made into new paper.
      Sustainable forestry, try looking it up.
      Ipads make more pollution when being made, then they continue to produce pollution whilst being used (they use electricity, producing electricity creates pollution).

      The green angle has to be the most laughable out of all of these. Especially with Apples reputation.

  • Unofficial Source (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:01PM (#38798377)

    The numbers have been released by a third party. Remember that before you take them for granted and/or bash Apple.

    I for one can't imagine what "proprietary methods" are able to estimate download numbers from Apple's servers.

  • by sandytaru (1158959) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:02PM (#38798381) Journal
    My systems analysis textbook set me back almost two hundred dollars brand new. My database management book was $120 used. My professor was the author of the latter; he had said he had asked his publisher about eBook editions, and they demurred, because their profits would be cut in half.

    The textbook industry needed this swift kick in the nuts to break up the racket.
    • by Synerg1y (2169962)

      Too late to tell you now, but you CAN probably share that analysis textbook w a buddy for 1/2 price. This works because system analysis depends heavily on stats and common sense. At least I remember not having to use mine a whole lot.

      Past that, it depends on somebody's learning style as to the value of the textbook.. will I ever use it again? For me the answer is 95% no. The 5% I gave to a friend LOL (asp.net 1.1), they've come out w asp.net 4.0 since then (not all as forward think as you might believe).

    • by Khashishi (775369) on Monday January 23, 2012 @08:59PM (#38799689) Journal

      Your professor could probably publish the damn thing himself with today's software tools, thereby kicking the textbook industry in the nuts.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:02PM (#38798395)

    forces you to sell only via the Apple Store. So, Apple will make 30% on every text book sold which is written in their new tool, and likey 30% on every new, yearly addition which changes a picture here or there and yet charges full price (what, you don't think this odious practice from physical books will make it into electronic textbooks?)

    Talk about vendor lock-in.

    And good luck trying to sell your book at the end of the year back to the Apple Store...

    • by v1 (525388) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:13PM (#38798515) Homepage Journal

      forces you to sell only via the Apple Store. So, Apple will make 30% on every text book sold which is written in their new tool, and likey 30% on every new, yearly addition which changes a picture here or there and yet charges full price (what, you don't think this odious practice from physical books will make it into electronic textbooks?)

      Talk about vendor lock-in.

      And good luck trying to sell your book at the end of the year back to the Apple Store...

      Very little of that is relevant if it reduces the student's final book costs by 70%. I'll happily give Apple their book lock-in all day long if it saves me a few grand on textbooks. Wouldn't you?

      (I yanked that 70% out of thin air, someone with better digging skills please dig up some hard numbers for us, but I can't imagine the savings being any LESS than that really, anyone that's had to pay their own college bills knows books are a complete racket)

      • You say that now. I would be very suspicious of an industry-wide system tied to a single vendor. And I like Apple stuf but the fact that this is going to be an Apple only venue is very disturbing.

        "Yes, I've altered the agreement. Pray I don't alter it any further."

      • by Microlith (54737) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:30PM (#38798717)

        I'll happily give Apple their book lock-in all day long if it saves me a few grand on textbooks. Wouldn't you?

        No, I'm not so foolish as to dive head first into brand lock-in. I like having my books exist independent of one company's platform. Platform dependent books, who would have thought such nonsense would ever actually happen?

        This is a problem that needs to be solved, but doing it by being stuck forever on one company's platform because they're severely anti-competitive is just stupid.

        • by v1 (525388)

          But don't the colleges already have you locked in? "Buy this and this and this for the courses you've signed up for this semester". OK, what are your options? You buy this and this and this. There is no choice other than trying to get your hands on something used. There is no shopping around. At least iBooks is cheaper. It's also a heck of a lot easier to carry to class. And how can you possibly argue with [i]searchable[/i]? There are so many advantages over dead trees it's almost magical.

          (and I wa

          • by Microlith (54737)

            But don't the colleges already have you locked in?

            I can always change colleges. And changing colleges does not negate the contents of the book, whereas I cannot access the contents of an Apple-dependent iBook from another platform (at least, not without bending over backwards.)

            There is no choice other than trying to get your hands on something used.

            A less known option is to buy the international version of some books, same content but a fraction of the price.

            At least iBooks is cheaper. It's also a heck of a

          • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

            by Anonymous Coward

            But don't the colleges already have you locked in? "Buy this and this and this for the courses you've signed up for this semester".

            Now it's "Buy this and this and this, but you'll also need an ipad and those 'books' are tied to it and can't be used on any other platform." It's not like Apple has invented the ebook here, they're just trying to popularize the platform-specific ebook. Don't want an ipad? Too bad. They could have done it with an open format, or published their format, but of course that wouldn't allow them the lock-in they get with a closed format to which only their software can read and write...oh and for that software y

      • Very little of that is relevant if it reduces the student's final book costs by 70%. I'll happily give Apple their book lock-in all day long if it saves me a few grand on textbooks. Wouldn't you?

        As a consumer, no. A significant portion of the value of a textbook, to me, is that I can keep it for life and use it as a reference, let other people borrow it, and, heck, pass it on to the next generation. (Certainly, when I was young, I spent a lot of time with my Dad's old text books.)

        DRM-free, open-format digit

      • Very little of that is relevant if it reduces the student's final book costs by 70%. I'll happily give Apple their book lock-in all day long if it saves me a few grand on textbooks. Wouldn't you?

        Hell no. It would require my students to have apple hardware and software. That places a needless financial and technological limit on my students. I do however see a market vulnerability here. Apple wants to replace the textbook cartel lock-in with their own lock-in. A reasonably priced service/app for authors

    • and the EULA for the authoring tool forces you to sell only via the Apple Store.

      True, but we've seen this scene play out before. Apple's tool is only for getting content to sell more iPads, but as soon as there is a serious market, Adobe or someone else will be making tools that will make epub books specifically tailored for the iPad and for the leading Android and the Kindle. While I wish Apple would go with tools that publish to open standards right away I also see they are a business and want to encourage iPad sales, not just tablet sales in general. Now that we have a slick competi

    • by Lumpy (12016)

      And it costs you $100-$150 to even sell a book. you have to buy a ISBN number. So every book title you sell is $100 cash out of your pocket.

      • by macs4all (973270)

        And it costs you $100-$150 to even sell a book. you have to buy a ISBN number. So every book title you sell is $100 cash out of your pocket.

        Do ebooks sold in the Apple Store have to have ISBN numbers?

        And I don't see any of the people who are whining about "lock-in" and "profiteering" bitching about things like the UPC and ISBN Cartels, who have taken the maintenance of a simple database and turned it into an industry-wide lock-in which, much like the proverbial "Mark of the Beast" none shall trade without paying the UPC/ISBN "toll".

        Yet, Apple is vilified for taking the cost of a textbook down to a fraction of its usual cost, while simultane

    • by MrMickS (568778) on Tuesday January 24, 2012 @06:03AM (#38802781) Homepage Journal

      All of the many complaints about the 30% that Apple take for selling through their store are indignation based on ignorance of retail practices, this includes Pete Townsend. The publisher love that Apple only charge 30% because its far less than a normal retail channel. The publishers get more per sale electronically than they would selling physical books.

      To answer your second point did you watch the announcement or are you just letting your predjudice define your opinions. One of the most interesting parts of the announcement was that these books would be updated, for free, meaning that you would always have the latest version. I'm still getting updates to app purchases I made on my iPhone 3 years ago. There is no reason why this wouldn't be the case for textbooks.

      On your final point, rather than getting all high and mighty about it, just think about it. Why do you sell back your expensive textbooks? Partly because they are expensive. If they are cheap enough that you don't have to sell them back wouldn't it make sense to keep the book? I guess it depends on your view of education and knowledge. I view it as a life skill, something that you add to from year to year.

      In general your post, and its rating, are why I've stopped look at Slashdot as a place to influence my opinion. It is filled with small minded opinion based on the status quo. I thought as geeks we were supposed to embrace change and look to the future. As with a lot in the world it seems that this happens less and less as the years go by.

  • What platform? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by markdavis (642305) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:06PM (#38798431)

    So how does this "iBooks 2" work on non-iOS devices? Android? Linux? MS-Windows?

    I have nothing against digital books, but if they are going to be locked up on a single platform, this is not a good thing (especially for educational uses).

    • I have nothing against digital books, but if they are going to be locked up on a single platform, ...

      What, you mean like they were on their previous platform, paper?

      • What if your paper textbook could only be carried in a Dawsons Creek Ultra Futura 2000 rucksack, and nothing else? That's what we're talking about here. Want an education? Ipad required...

        Apple are a business, and free to build in as much lock-in on their platforms as they please. I am hoping that we will see competing solutions, and open ones would be even better, but with Apple offering authors an easy way to publish with a bigger slice of the profits, I fear we may see the Apple platform establish
      • by Bucky24 (1943328)

        What, you mean like they were on their previous platform, paper?

        Damn that's an interesting comparison.... I know there's something wrong with it but I just can't figure out what :D

    • The iBook format is a "modified" version of ePub. I don't know how modified, exactly. Calibre did not seem to have any trouble reading one, once the file extension was changed from ".ibook" to ".epub".
      • Re:What platform? (Score:4, Interesting)

        by hedwards (940851) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:21PM (#38798619)

        I did a quick search and apparently the iBook format uses a proprietary CSS which makes it not entirely compatible between itself and ePub.

      • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

        by Colin Smith (2679)

        Calibre did not seem to have any trouble reading one, once the file extension was changed from ".ibook" to ".epub".

        You realise this is a DMCA copy protection violation?

      • by Nerdfest (867930)
        It is a modified version of ePub ... for now. If it was to remain ePub, they would advertise it as ePub.
        • by beelsebob (529313)

          It is ePub, but using some CSS that isn't in the official ePub spec, so while it's strictly speaking "modified", anything based on an even vaguely recent rendering engine will cope with it quite happily.

    • strings filename | less

  • by grege1 (1065244) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:07PM (#38798445)
    Great, too bad if you are poor, no more textbooks for you. No iPad no education. There is no merit in this kind of lock in.
  • What?! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ichthus (72442) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:10PM (#38798481) Homepage

    Physical textbooks lack portability, durability, accessibility, consistent quality, interactivity and searchability, and they're not environmentally friendly."

    They lack... portability? Ok, if you have to carry 5 of them around, I see your point.
    Durability? Like, when I spill coffee on mine? Or, drop it? Or, draw mustaches on the people in it?
    Accessibility? .... ok, you win.
    Consistent quality? So, you're going to GUARANTEE consistent content quality in eBooks?
    And, of course, the ebook argument wins on searchability. But let's face it, an Index/TOC is practically just as good. Unless you're searching for absolutely every occurrence of a specific word, a good index is just as good.

    But, are we really going to argue that iPads are more environmentally friendly than text books? That would be an interesting discussion.

    • Re:What?! (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Quirkz (1206400) <ross@nospAm.quirkz.com> on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:18PM (#38798579) Homepage
      I was going to say the same thing. They're really stretching with some of those claims, and cleverly neglecting some other aspects, like physical books don't crash or get data corruption, rarely get completely destroyed if you drop them or step on them, and until e-readers get a little more oomph I think traditional books are still easier to flip through rapidly.
      • by KhabaLox (1906148)

        until e-readers get a little more oomph I think traditional books are still easier to flip through rapidly.

        Interesting point. Why should we read e-textbooks on an iPad when something like a Kindle is much cheaper, and provides a better (text) reading experience from all accounts. Ok, you can't put embedded videos, but perhaps that's a good thing (or at least a fair trade off to keep HW cost down and durability up).

        • by Quirkz (1206400)
          I actually include Kindles and Nooks in the same category. One of the things I hate most about my Nook is it's a pain to flip back three pages and double-check a detail while I'm reading. It takes many times longer than with a physical book, and is particularly frustrating waiting for screen loads.

          Much worse are books with illustrations that you need to refer to, or books with maps up front, where you'd be tempted to jump back and forth between them and your current page.
    • by Teun (17872)
      Exactly my thoughts, this part of the summary is plain flamebait.
    • Re:What?! (Score:4, Interesting)

      by revscat (35618) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:42PM (#38798837) Journal

      Durability? Like, when I spill coffee on mine? Or, drop it? Or, draw mustaches on the people in it?

      Anecdotally, I have heard students complain that book publishers have recently introduced a different kind of glue for the books' bindings, one which degrades rather quickly, over a year or so.

      A quick search isn't turning up anything about this, but I have heard it enough over the past year or so to give it some credence. Perhaps others on /. who currently are students can share their experiences in this regard.

    • They lack... portability? Ok, if you have to carry 5 of them around, I see your point.

      Back in my day, that was a benefit. Hauling 30 pounds of books over many, many walked miles everyday in the central Texas heat made me thin and fit. UT can be a large campus when your schedule ping pongs you from one side to the other and back again all day. This was 1985, maybe things have changed :-P

    • College students eventually figure out that it is completely unnecessary to carry textbooks to class. It does, however, take time, so most go through the same progression: freshmen carry EVERYTHING and need to wear both straps of their backpack. Sophomores lighten the load and can use just one strap. Juniors carry a notebook. Seniors carry beer.

  • "Physical textbooks lack portability, durability, accessibility, consistent quality, interactivity and searchability, and they're not environmentally friendly."

    For me studying physics every day the e-textbook is still years away from being useful. I can agree with the portability argument but thats about it. I can, with a real, physical textbook have the following advantages over an iTextBook however:

    - drop a textbook without breaking it, and even if I damage it I can still use it, not wait for my insurer

  • by DogDude (805747) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:15PM (#38798545) Homepage
    Book: Grow tree. Create paper. Use for a hundred years or so. Paper rots. Repeat.

    iGadget: Mine toxic heavy metals. Make gadget with slave labor that last for a few years. Burn electricity to use gadget. Throw gadget in landfill when done. Repeat.

    I think I'll stick with real books, thanks.
  • ...the '1984' Apple commercial [youtube.com]
    Now they are going to be telling us what to learn and think.

    We were never at war with innovation, we are always at war with innovation.

    Coming to you soon on the iBigBrother (with CarrierIQ).
  • by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:20PM (#38798607)
    If they're anything like me, they downloaded the Author application, played with and saved a test "publication", then tossed the application into the shitcan with all the other applications that save only to proprietary venues/formats.

    Author will save only to ".ibook" (a modified version of ".epub"), a crippled .pdf, or .txt (the latter without any graphics, of course). And it will not "publish" to anything but Apple's store for use on iPhones and iPads.

    I have no use for such lock-in, proprietary bullshit. I'll publish my work in a .PDF instead. Sure, it will get "illegally shared" some, but as far as I am concerned that is still better than this. And there are ways to help prevent that, too.
  • by wjcofkc (964165) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:20PM (#38798613)
    I'm a bit of an apple fan boy and am all for promoting them but could you please do better than directly quoting verbatim their own promotional material in the summary?

    example:
    "...there is very little merit to the physical textbook, and the education industry has been waiting for a viable solution like this for some time. Physical textbooks lack portability, durability, accessibility, consistent quality, interactivity and searchability, and they're not environmentally friendly"

    Seriously, go to apples website and watch their promo video (it actually is pretty cool) You will find that the summary was largely directly lifted. Are you trying to use these as your own words? They are not used in the story so...
    • by binarstu (720435)
      The parent is right on. The entire article reads like little more than a big advertisement for Apple. Here's a small sample.

      "...there is very little merit to the physical textbook, and the education industry has been waiting for a viable solution like this for some time."
      Says who? No evidence is provided to substantiate either of these claims, other than a few quotes from "a teacher" taken from an Apple promotional video(!).

      "Now that there's a device that can trump the textbook in every way -- the
  • by idontgno (624372) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:23PM (#38798655) Journal

    "there is very little merit to the physical textbook"

    ...it is impossible to separate a cube into two cubes, or a fourth power into two fourth powers, or in general, any power higher than the second, into two like powers. I have discovered a truly marvelous proof of this, which this read-only ebook will not permit me to record.

    --Pierre de Fermat

  • Does anyone have documentation for the used format? I know it is almost epub/Html5 but exactly what did apple add, and what do they not support yet?

    I can't use apples software due to the insane license deal, but would still like to produce books in this format.

     

  • The education industry has certainly NOT been "waiting for a viable solution like this for some time". The students have, and maybe even some sympathetic teachers, but textbooks are outrageously expensive, even the e-book versions, and somebody is profiting off it all.

    A solution to the problem of expensive textbooks exists. There is an entire world of public domain textbooks out there, but all of them are useless when the professor tells you to read p.67-123 from the official textbook for a quiz tomorrow.

    Bu

  • there is very little merit to the physical textbook

    So not only is the fanboy drivel not edited out, blatantly moronic statements like this are left in the summary.

  • by phalse phace (454635) on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:35PM (#38798769)

    What I want to know is if I can resell the digital textbook once I'm done with it like with a paper-based textbook. It's one way to help offset the price of the next textbook I might buy, but knowing Apple probably not.

    • No but instead of paying a hundred dollars or more for the book you're paying _at most_ $15 for the iBook edition.

      Now, that book you bought that you're able to resell - how much are you selling it for? I'm willing to bet you're not selling it for $15 below the price you paid for it which means the iBook costs less, even though you can't resell. You are out-of-pocket less money _and_ you get to keep the book.
    • by MartinSchou (1360093) on Monday January 23, 2012 @08:51PM (#38799619)

      Where can you buy other things distributed digitally (like music, movies and games), that you are allowed to resell later?

      This isn't an Apple issue. Well, it is an issue that includes Apple, but to put it forward as if only Apple only does this is disingenuous.

      Can you resell your Kindle ebooks?
      Can you resell your Steam games?
      Your Amazon music?
      Apps you've bought on Android store?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 23, 2012 @07:39PM (#38798803)

    It's very attractive in theory, but when I look at the license agreement I'm not sure I can go with it (About iBooks Author->License Agreement). If I use these tools and charge a fee I *have* to distribute the book through Apple. I understand the rationale. Why should the tool be free if I can turn around and distribute it somewhere else? It's only fair for Apple to expect something in return.

    On the other hand I'm picturing what would happen if I put a few months work into a text, it becomes popular/useful to others, and then someone asks if other arrangements can be made for distribution (e.g., maybe someone wants to make and sell a regular paper edition). I'm stuck if I ever charged money for it.

    Granted, the restriction only exists if you charge a fee. If the text is free "you may distribute the Work by any available means". This part is awesome! Full kudos to Apple for that and for making the agreement relatively simple. But what if I wanted to charge, say, $5 a textbook to help cover costs of its development and maintenance? Nothing substantial, but covering things like hiring a student to do drafting of figures, preparing photos, editing, that sort of thing. This would be publishing on the cheap rather than completely free. Unfortunately once you cross into the "fee" realm at all, you've made a deal for sole distribution with Apple, and it isn't clear whether there is any alternative.

    Thus, as much as I like it, I hesitate, because I'm not certain I want to distribute my work for free rather than very cheap compared to the usual textbook. Maybe this is Apple's way to encourage people to write free works. If so, then I applaud their approach. I'm just not sure it is the way I want to go. At least with licenses like the GPL I have the *option* to charge money without having further license complications.

    You're probably all thinking I'm a stingy old !#$%!% now :-)

    • by whisper_jeff (680366) on Monday January 23, 2012 @10:41PM (#38800433)

      ...if I put a few months work into a text, it becomes popular/useful to others, and then someone asks if other arrangements can be made for distribution (e.g., maybe someone wants to make and sell a regular paper edition). I'm stuck if I ever charged money for it.

      No. You're not. You're misunderstanding the license restriction. The .ibooks file that iBooks Author creates can only be distributed through Apple. The book can be distributed any way you want. If you make a .ibooks file and sell it through Apple and garner some interest for a print version or a Kindle version or whatever, all you need to do is transfer the information to the new format and you can sell it.

      The restriction applies to the _file_ that iBooks Author creates, not the book that you write. And, given that Apple is the only company to publish software that can (currently) read a .ibooks file, that is a reasonable restriction.

      The key reason for the restriction is so that, should someone (such as a Cydia developer) create a program that can read .ibooks files, you cannot sell the .ibooks files created with iBooks Author on that store.

  • I have to say, I enjoyed the fact that the university I went to had none of these problems because textbooks were included. Before classes started, you went to the bookstore and got all the textbooks you needed for a flat "textbook usage fee" I think it was somewhere around like $15-20 a class. You got the version the professor was using and didn't have to worry about reselling it. About the only drawbacks is you weren't supposed to really deface it (though in reality they really didn't care) and you didn't
  • Physical textbooks lack portability, durability, accessibility, consistent quality, interactivity and searchability, and they're not environmentally friendly.

    On the other hand, they're not encumbered by DRM, they don't vaporize after a hundred readings or a year, whichever comes first, they don't demand that you read them with Apple (R) iGlasses and they don't have to be vetted by a gatekeeper (who takes 30%) before being published.

  • by Khyber (864651) <techkitsune@gmail.com> on Monday January 23, 2012 @08:31PM (#38799431) Homepage Journal

    "Physical textbooks lack portability, durability, accessibility, consistent quality, interactivity and searchability, and they're not environmentally friendly.""

    Portability: I could carry my entire year in my backpack.

    Durability: Yea, that little piece of silicon you're holding is just as susceptible to fire, heat, water, OH AND CRASHING. Books aren't crashing. Books don't need an expensive proprietary OS to work, they truly 'just work.'

    Accessibility/interactivity/searching: Most books meant for rapid searching/accessibility have both indexes and a table of contents - TWO SEARCH ENGINES! IMAGINE THAT!

    Consistent Quality: Books don't need software updates, and aren't prone to getting hacked. Revisions do happen, but they're few and far between because of TRUE quality control.

    Environmentally Friendly: They're more environmentally friendly (and trap lots more carbon) than your strip-mined piece of silicon, iridium, cadmium, etc. Takes less energy to manufacture, too!

  • by Khashishi (775369) on Monday January 23, 2012 @08:56PM (#38799677) Journal

    I can throw a book across the room and it might damage the cover of a hardcover, but it will still work fine. I wouldn't want to try this with an ipad or a kindle. Under reasonable storage conditions, paper will remain readable after magnetic platters have gotten demagnetized and CDs have corroded.

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