The Book is Forever

“Much as we love books, archiving them in libraries for future generations and exhibiting them behind glass as art objects, they are a vulnerable medium” (Borsuk 179).

“While we might assume that digital books will have a longer shelf life than print, the proliferation of reading devices coupled with the pace of technological development virtually ensures the obsolescence of e-books to particular software or hardware” (Borsuk 182).

Borsuk discusses some interesting ideas about books and their lifespan, tackling both print and digital. Though they both have their place and uses, I’ve always considered digital books to be the superior version between the two. As long as they have a place on the internet or in a computer, digital books should last far longer than print. However, Borsuk challenges this by discussing how, at least in their current form, they too will fade like physical books will. It made me reconsider digital books as a whole, and subsequently, how they’re created.

Digital publishing, as I know it, is the creation and sharing of some form of content, such as books and videos. I believe digital books encompass a large variety of instances. Typical e-books count, as they’re usually the digitized version of a physical book, but also books published on websites count. They may not have the standard layout of a book, but they give information like any book can.

It’s difficult to predict how advanced technology will be in the future. Will computers no longer exist as stationary or portable devices and instead become holograms incorporated into our daily life? I couldn’t say, however as Borsuk mentions, it does make sense that what we use to publish digital content will change over time. Maybe in a distant future, books will transcend their current form. Maybe digital publishing will become forum-like where anybody can publish without the need of money or a company’s support. Perhaps technology will standardize at some point so that data isn’t lost to centuries of inventions. Either way, I think digital publishing and digital books will adapt to whatever changes happen. People will always want to read something, even if the medium or platform changes. Books won’t totally disappear, and neither will publishing.

Works Cited

Borsuk, Amaranth. The Book. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2018.

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