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Sunday, November 30, 2008

 

'The Book is Like a Hammer'

James Gleick, who was involved on the Authors Guild's side of a 2005 lawsuit the Guild filed against Google for scanning millions of out-of-print books and making the text searchable on the Internet, opines in the NY Times on the future of the book:
"As a technology, the book is like a hammer. That is to say, it is perfect: a tool ideally suited to its task. Hammers can be tweaked and varied but will never go obsolete. Even when builders pound nails by the thousand with pneumatic nail guns, every household needs a hammer. Likewise, the bicycle is alive and well. It was invented in a world without automobiles, and for speed and range it was quickly surpassed by motorcycles and all kinds of powered scooters. But there is nothing quaint about bicycles. They outsell cars."

— TJ Sullivan in LA
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