True, the e-book has been invented and is making major inroads into how (and what) people read. But also on the rise is another invention: machines that can preoduce reasonably-priced books-on-demand. This latter invention, Thompson believes, will result in far more printed books in the future instead of fewer ones.
An excerpt from Thompson’s essay:
Will the e-book kill off the print book? Every time I hear that question, I think about the ‘paperless office.’ Back in the ’80s, the rise of word processors and e-mail convinced a lot of people that paper would vanish. Why print anything when you could simply squirt documents around electronically?
We all know how that turned out….