Jason Epstein, Chairman of On Demand Books, has a letter to the editor in today’s Wall Street Journal, “Books Have a Bright Future and Not Just a Digital One.” Mr. Epstein discusses the machine he calls the Espresso Book Machine, which “automatically prints, binds, and trims one copy at a time, on demand, quickly . . . “ I would love to have such a device in our library, so that we can purchase more monographs on demand and less on speculation.
There’s also an article by Jon Swartz in today’s USA Today about a new service, Zinio, that offers digital versions of over 750 magazines. The story, “Zinio puts hundreds of magazines a click away – Digital versions give readers new options,” is interesting but I see less of a need for this at the law library than the ability to download and rapidly print books. Although the story notes that “. . . Zinio offers for free 120 ‘digital classics’ such as Moby Dick, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Great Expectations through its website . . . The books are downloadable.”