What's a Book?

This blog entry is inspired by the webcomic Least I Could Do.

And I quote:
"What's a book?"

"It's like a downloadable PDF file that's printed on paper and bound together."

I like books. I have a decent collection of them, and read them a lot. I like being able to read them whether or not there's power, whether or not the batteries are charged, and so on. And yet, it seems like the technology for electronic books is constantly improving. Will there ever be a time when they'll rival my hankering for the paperbacks?

I already read some books on my cellphone PDA, usually books I've already read and like to keep handy. I can't read them in public, for fear of attracting cellphone snatchers or driving down the ever-so-precious battery life. It's cool to be able to search for passages, neat to annotate and create multiple bookmarks on it, and so on. It's nice to have an electronic back-up on my laptop just in case the cellphone gets wiped or stolen.

But still, there's something terrifying about losing the use of your cellphone because your penchant for reading.

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