STATIONERY conference there, at which I'm speaking, snow and ice permitting. For the journey I have on my iPad a pre-release download of WHY THE NET MATTERS by David Eagleman, coming very soon from Canongate - and it looks utterly beautiful as well as interesting, with spinnable graphics and nifty navigation. I'll report back on the whole reading experience on my return...hopefully.
The decline of the book from its position as the dominant social medium has been prophesied for decades. The book was threatened with a loss of importance more than half a century ago, as film and television became truly mass media. The book weathered all this change in the media, but today is faced with new and major challenges. What does the future of the printed word look like? Will we experience the end of the medium of the book or the “death of the printed press”, as predicted by communication theoreticians, marketing experts and publishers? Can a media revolution really be expected or is it more a matter of parallel developments in the media, of completely normal shifts in importance? Publishers, critics, academics, journalists, literary agents and authors will gether to discuss these and many other questions pertaining to the future of the book in the Alter Wiehrebahnhof in Freiburg from the 3rd to the 5th December.