I think it's important to understand the cost items associated with paper copy of books. I am not sure if the cost of paper carries a lot of weight in the cost of the book. There is obviously value in the intellectual and the original content of a book. I am not sure how much weight this value carries when it comes to paper copies. As I do not have this information, I am unable to share that here. Maybe some of the readers would be willing to shed some light to this point.
Digital copy of books will reflect the true value of the books in terms of their intellectual weight. If the authors do not make enough money on digital books, then they will not have the incentive to write anymore, which I think would be a diseaster for the global advancement of knowledge and people.
One good thing about the digital copies is that the profit margin for the authors may increase compared to the paper copies. Maybe on absolute terms the copies will cost less (due to the lack of paper costs), however, there is a good chance that the authors will earn more.
Cryptoman, the digital books have certain advantages but the associated cost is much lesser than the paperbook. Digital books do not need any phyiscal storage or transportation cost or any invertory etc. Most importantly they do not use paper so IMO they should cost less just for the sake of environment so that people have extra incentive not to buy hardcover books.
I think the added values brought by an electronic copy of a book over its paperback version may be the justification (or the excuse) for it having the same price as a printed copy. Yes, if one looks at the cost during the manufacturing process, the electronic copies should definitely be cheaper than the printed versions. However, when we look at the value offered by the two media, a different side of the picture appears.
In my opinion, following is what the electronic copy of a book adds as values:
1 - Electronic copy has no weight. It's easy to carry around and to access on multiple media these days.
2 - Electronic copies are much easier to share, which is why the publishers want to make as much money as they can as soon as possible. This is because the inevitable element of piracy will quickly plunge the sales. It acannot be helped unfortunately. When electronic copies are shared, all the people can concurrently access the same content, which is not possible when you share a printed book!
3 - Electronic copies provide an excellent means to browse the document. You can quickly jump between chapters, add hundreds of bookmarks and keep notes on the digital copy. Furthermore, with an electronic copy, you can access external links and references instantly that dramatically expand the information pool you get access to.
4 - Archiving digital copies of books is really cheap. You do not need to change your existing bookshelves as the number of volumes increases. You simply buy a larger harddisk to maintain your growing archive of electronic copies.
5 - Digital copies do not age and their pages do not turn yellow over time due to the oxidation of lignin as in printed copies. Therefore, the lifetime of a printed book is not as long as a digital copy and furthermore its quality degrades over time. Digital copies remain brand new forever.
Thanks Adeniji. We tend to look at outright charge for printing of books and other services but internet technologies quiet different, infact that's how they make money --- web service providers like Amazon, Facebook, and others. The insignificant token of charges 90% of consumers do not really bother of, this is where the strategy of these providers are --- numerical advantage of web crawlers.
Clairvoyant, it looks like that but indirect cost might be the reason. A look at storage space on Amazon server for 100 different book titles for example to advertise online as well as storing them. Wont Amazon charge them for that?
EBN Dialogue enables and encourages you to participate in live chats with notable leaders and luminaries. Not only editors and journalists, but the entire EBN community is able to comment and ask questions. Listed below are upcoming and archived chats.
Thailand Stages a Comeback Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Microsoft Surface: Potential Winners & Losers What are the implications for the electronics industry supply chain of Microsoft Corp.'s decision to launch its own tablet PC? Join industry veteran and EE Times' systems and OEM expert Rick Merritt on Tuesday, July 3, at 12:00 pm EDT for a Live Chat on this subject.
Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Peter Drucker famously said "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window." Yet in the razor's-edge world of electronics—with a lean supply chain and just-in-time demands—the need to know the future is vital.
While no one really can accurately predict the future, we can take guidance from another Drucker saying which is the best way to predict the future is to create it.
You've heard the saying "the No. 1 supply chain risk is your people." That hasn't always been the case. But today's complex global supply chain requires a new type of multitalented employee. It's one who understands, finance, marketing, economics, is savvy with technology, graceful with relationships and can think analytically.
Where are these people? Are universities properly preparing the next generation supply chain professionals? How do train your existing workforce for these new, demanding positions?
Brian Fuller, editor-in-chief of EBN, will lead a 60-minute Avnet Velocity panel discussion that will ask and answer these and other questions swirling around today's supply-chain talent challenges.