Thursday, April 8, 2010

Do you want a latte with your book?

No, thank you. I'll take some of that awesome Starbucks tea, though.

Here's a cool video (thanks Beth Revis!) of the Espresso, which makes books rather than coffee, but is awesome nonetheless. This kind of Print on Demand tech is what's changing the game.

"The Espresso Book Machine can produce paperbacks in variable combinations of trim sizes between 4.5" x 5.0" and 8.25" x 10.5" for a production cost less than one cent per page."

<--And they look like this. How much longer will it be before these are stationed in Barnes & Noble and you can order up and print out your own out of print book before your latte cools? Google Books is already on board. The Economist agrees only experts can tell the difference between POD and offset printing, and that POD printing will likely double (6% of books printed to 15%) in the next 5 years, fueled by university presses and self-publishing. Espresso, and other POD technologies, won't replace offset printing but it might help fuel book sales, making it easier to get niche titles into people's hands (not just their e-readers). And I think that's a good thing.




5 comments:

  1. I remember hearing about this awhile back -- it definitely portends change -- good change, too, IMO (imagine being able to select various covers, fonts, etc). Form and function. Nice.

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  2. I think I saw this on Beth's blog. It's incredible, isn't it? It just blows my mind. :-)

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  3. Very cool, I can't wait until people can go to bookstores for obscure titles! :)

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  4. Bane - Ooh! I hadn't thought of alternate covers. Very nice.

    Shannon - I just can't keep up with the tech, I tell you!

    Robert - Hey! Welcome from FB! Just think if we could order up what we wanted and pick it up from the local bookstore...or library...these things could go anywhere.

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Erudite comments from thoughtful readers