Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Future of Books

I am a luddite; and I am proud of it.  I was given new courage last night when my wife, who reads more than me, looked up from her ipad and said: "Maybe I am getting too distracted to read."  I responded with enthusiasm, my wife had a kindle before her ipad: "Maybe we should go and buy some books."  The encroachment of digital technology on the reader's engagement with words, is something to be concerned about.  Of further concern, we might learn from the demise of Borders, is the constant measuring of book sales as a determination of a publisher's success.  Though I know profit is important, pleasure and culture are too.  Have a look at the following from DBW.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Young Americans are still reading

Pew Research finds that there is still a healthy appetite for books, ebooks and libraries among young Americans.  The findings are most encouraging.

Libraries are for learning

Jeff Norton offers an enthusiastic defence of school libraries, calling them a safe haven, away from the bullying of the schoolyard.  Whilst I applaud any defence of libraries, I think that Norton misses the point somewhat.  Libraries are about learning, and schools should embrace them as such.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Wot'd you say? Procrastination should be done tomorrow.

Word of the day.  I like this one; not just because I have something to do, and I can't get my head round it.  Procrastination is to defer to tomorrow; crastinus being that which 'belongs to tomorrow'.  Rather good that. Maybe I don't need to do it today after all.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Growth for ebooks; decline for paperbacks

Digital World tells us that ebook sales continue to rise, though the rate is slowing.  Paperback sales continue to fall.  I remain optimistically luddite.  Bring me vinyl, paperbacks and a good wine; they all improve with age.  Maybe!

Libraries are the centre of a school's universe; or should be at least

Adam Lancaster writes about his school has used data to target students for library support and to measure impact, a buzz-word in education.  Whilst I admire the ambition, as well as the defence of libraries, the only question is why should we have to.  Education is about learning, and learning is what libraries do best.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Rowling is an inspiration

J.K.Rowling, like anyone who grabs the attention of the world, is an inspiration.  I have read the Potter series many times; the books offer a delicious, engaging escape.  My only criticism is that perhaps she might have done better to stick to a formula, recycling the school year without ever taking us to an end.  Having said that  the excitement of her work did an enormous amount for books; I hope her return to kid's lit will do more of the same.  Bring it on.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Social Media Hacking

Mashable offers a worthy account of the risks of social media hacking.  Included among them is the risk of following a link.  I am safe, however.  Honest.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Reading Great Literature

Hannah Betts offers a convincing argument fro reading great literature.  Though I suffered after University, not wanting to read books outside the canon and not knowing how else to choose, she has my sympathies.  Great Literature, reading across the centuries, helps to put the present into context.

New Technology - old behaviour

A brief study of today's news finds three sports stars making the news for tweets.  Bring on common sense I say.  The stories concern Lewis Hamilton, Kevin Pietersen and Ashley Cole.  I am tempted to suggest that even the latest bust-up in a celebrity relationship is of greater interest.