Is It the End of Printed Technology Books?



  • Has this moment finally arrived? When the Kindle came out we all predicted that this would come but between publishers holding back on digital editions, restrictive DRM, marginally better (if even) digital pricing, etc. very little changed. I know that for me, I had almost no digital editions for many years even though I owned a first edition Kindle, as did my wife. For one reason or another, I kept buying everything in print - mostly because I had no choice. There was almost nothing that I wanted available except in paper copy.

    Sometime recently, I have noticed that this all has changed. Pretty much every publisher that I like and use (for technology books that is) is now selling well priced, DRM free, digital copies directly on their websites. These are not Kindle editions but flexible "you own it" versions. And pretty much all of the publishers have regular sales too of around 50% off. This is a relatively recent shift.

    Now I am buying everything in digital and everything that I want appears to be available. I still use a Kindle for my reading mostly, I love the device (the Paperwhite specifically), but I buy direct, DRM free from the publishers now. Amazon is cut out of the cycle as are all of the other book stores. This is a big change in what is available and how books are acquired.



  • Books are going away. Like records, don't expect them to be extinct.

    Newspapers and magazines have been dropping for years. Shift to all digital formats has stalled the drop for those who can commit to it.

    Kindle's price point has been attractive. Heck, even seeing numerous traditional libraries offering digital checkout. Certainly more convenient than travelling with weighty tomes. (yeah, more delicate than those tomes, of course.)

    Been noticing digital versions being released months in advance of printed editions. Significant point for technology topics.



  • I sold all my paper books, because thet took too much space and collected dust. Today all my books are in the digital formats.



  • I've started to pick and buy DRM-Free books, even though a lot of my initial purchases have been solely through Play Books or Amazon. Publishers early on acted in the same way the recording industry reacted to digital, which is bad. How many times have you loaned a physical book or visited a library? Digital books are no different if you have already paid for them or you are loaning them for a time.



  • @Maria-Levkina said:

    I sold all my paper books, because thet took too much space and collected dust. Today all my books are in the digital formats.

    I did that last year. It was tens of thousands of dollars of paper books that I shipped out. It was crazy. A huge volume of our moving overhead is from the books.



  • I loved the concept of the eInk technology so much that I imported a Sony Librie from Japan in 2004 and installed a hack on it to convert things to English. I subsequently broke the screen while on a trip to Japan of all places, but could not find a replacement screen then. When I came home, it was only a couple month later when Sony released the first Reader in the US. I've spent so many hours reading on these devices, I loved them.

    The issue with getting content back then was similar to what happened in the music industry. I basically said screw the publishers and read poor quality OCR'd versions of my entertainment reading.

    I have fallen out of using my Sony Reader lately because of a lack of content and me no longer using illegally aquired documents. I will have to follow @scottalanmiller's thread about cheap books and get back in the habit.



  • The Kindle Paperwhite is my favorite gadget. With a nice case in almost "NTG Orange" it is perfect for all of my reading.



  • Where do you guys buy digital version of books from? I have an iPad1 and been thinking about buying a new tablet for quite some time. Can these DRM free copies be used on Kindle? I haven't got chance to use Kindle yet



  • @ambarishrh said:

    Where do you guys buy digital version of books from? I have an iPad1 and been thinking about buying a new tablet for quite some time. Can these DRM free copies be used on Kindle? I haven't got chance to use Kindle yet

    Directly from the publishers. That's the only way to get the good deals and DRM-free.



  • If you following the Oreilly thread, @mike-ralston posts the daily sales.

    Peachpit and Manning have similar programs.



  • @scottalanmiller And can this be used on a Kindle? Now checking on which tablet to buy or just the Kindle 🙂



  • @ambarishrh said:

    @scottalanmiller And can this be used on a Kindle? Now checking on which tablet to buy or just the Kindle 🙂

    Yes. They all provide Kindle's mobi format. Plus Kindle can use PDF.



  • @scottalanmiller Thank you, Still checking if I really need a tablet or just get Kindle 🙂



  • @ambarishrh said:

    @scottalanmiller Thank you, Still checking if I really need a tablet or just get Kindle 🙂

    I use Kindle. Tablets are only useful if you want full color.



  • @ambarishrh Kindle is known for daylight reading. Have a crazy long battery life compared to tablets (days between charging versus hours).

    Price point is attractive.



  • @RoguePacket said:

    @ambarishrh Kindle is known for daylight reading. Have a crazy long battery life compared to tablets (days between charging versus hours).

    Price point is attractive.

    With the Paperwhite edition it is now my favorite daylight, as well as darkness, reader. The backlighting is awesome.



  • I don't think it will be dead for probably another 10+ years, but it will get there eventually.

    I've been thinking about getting my wife a paperwhite Kindle. She had a Gen 1 (stepped on and broke) and now has a gen 3 no keyboard that she loves.



  • It is really amazing how much happier the PaperWhite makes me compared to seller versions. It's really just awesome. The backlight, the touchscreen... They really come together to make it super usable.

    And the battery easily lasts a month.

    I use my Kindle to read to the kids every night too.



  • Yesterday night I got an iPad mini retina 🙂
    Initially after @scottalanmiller post I was almost ready to get a kindle but then thought of my next exams to take this year. We have a corporate cbt nuggets which I use extensively and so decided to get iPad which could be used for both reading and cbt plus you know! 😉

    Woke up very early and playing around with the new toy. ML looks great on iPad too 🙂



  • @ambarishrh said:

    Yesterday night I got an iPad mini retina 🙂
    Initially after @scottalanmiller post I was almost ready to get a kindle but then thought of my next exams to take this year. We have a corporate cbt nuggets which I use extensively and so decided to get iPad which could be used for both reading and cbt plus you know! 😉

    Woke up very early and playing around with the new toy. ML looks great on iPad too 🙂

    Nice unit. I plan on trading my iPad 2 for an iPad Mini Retina later this year. We use those for the office. Kindle is just for reading.


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