Electronic Text

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Electronic Text Many people will argue that history began with the advent of the written word. Before books, history was passed by word of mouth and was often lost or altered as it went from generation to generation down through the years. For many years now our civilization has enjoyed books, journals, newspapers, magazines, and many other types of writing. We use these literary tools to record our lives, to invent stories from the imagination so powerful that they make writers into millionaires, and to make news available to the general public. Today, in our technological age, a new form of literary expression is taking place. With the invention of the internet and the trend towards more of the population using it as a source of news and information, we find the growing popularity of electronic text. News, books, and entire literary archives are being converted to electronic text and put on the internet for anyone who wishes to read them. Electronic text has many positive attributes. I believe that the use of electronic text will lead to the more effectual publishing and distribution of books, but at the same time will lead to the destruction of many precious books and newspapers. Michael Rogers writes in his article “Oprah, Bill Gates, and the Future of Books: Lessons from the Premature Birth and Death of the E-book” that “Later this century, kids will be amazed to learn how we used to distribute books. Think about it. We grow entire forests, chop them down, flatten them out, spread ink on them, turn them into bricks of wood pulp, which we then drive around the country on trucks. Our children won’t be amazed because we were primitive—they’ll be amazed that we were so rich” (Rogers). Rogers goes o... ... middle of paper ... ... There are both pros and cons when it comes to electronic text. Before ENGL 3134 I did not know any of these facts but only had my own opinions. I am glad to have gained this knowledge and hope than in the future we will retain our literary heritage while moving forward in the area of electronic text. Works Cited Kurzweil, Raymond. “The Future of Libraries, Part 1: The Technology of the Book.” Visions of the Future. 8/6/01. < http://www.kurzweilai.net /meme/frame.html?main=/articles/art0262.html> (4/29/03). Rogers, Michael. "Oprah, Bill Gates and the Future of Books: Lessons from the premature birth and death of the e-book." Newsweek. 1/22/02. <http://www.msnbc.com/news/692265.asp> 3/26/02. Baker, Nicholas. Double Fold: Libraries and the Assault on Paper. (2000) < http://www.nytimes.com/books/first/b/baker-fold.html> (4/30/03).
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