book of the future - the video 07.19.2009, 8:26 AM
posted by bob stein
thanks to Mike Lee, here's a YouTube version of the video described in the previous post.
Posted by bob stein on July 19, 2009 8:26 AM
Sonja on July 19, 2009 12:46 PM:
Great film that made me excited about the book as they project it. One aspect of the video that I enjoyed was the coexistence of e-readers with paper books. It was encouraging to see the permanence of bookshops (which, I agree, do not stand to disappear any time soon) and the incorporation of the bookshop-owner character. My French, however, is far from perfect, and it was difficult to tell whether, at the end, the woman opted to purchase the Bruegel book as a book or as a file. An art book is a perfect example of the kind of object someone would want to own in book rather than file form. Anyone care to clarify this for me?
Bobby Graham on July 19, 2009 10:40 PM:
Yes, the film has it all: elegance and lifestyle combined with product portability, flexibility, ease of use, compatability and general pleasure - I want one of those readers! Seriously, I don't think this is too far off. Isn't the lack of colour technology the only thing keeping this kind of ebook reader back?
I also like the print book/ebook combo users - I don't have to be exclusively one or the other.
Alain Pierrot on July 20, 2009 5:53 AM:
The Bruegel comes as a p-book gift, (in its French translation, she had not bought the Flemish version in the bookshop).
Michael W. Perry on July 20, 2009 12:12 PM:
A good title for this might be "iPhone Meets Kindle." The UI and touch screen of the iPhone is mated to the size and book-centric emphasis of the Kindle. It's cleverly done and perhaps a hint at what our next surprise from Apple will be. But a few incongruities stood out:
1. A color screen that's as easily readable in bright sunlight as in a darkened room. Currently, only in our dreams.
2. Near the end the guy pulls a Kindle-sized gadget from his coat. Doable? Easily, but I suspect that, as men, we'd look a bit weird with a flat object that size flapping around on our chest. And for women, it's completely unworkable. Just-above-hip-level pockets for both sexes maybe, but not chest high.
3. Note too the intriguing blend of technologies. They visit a bookstore to see print versions, but buy digital copies for themselves. But then again, note all the traditional books on the shelves of their home. A blend of two technologies is often better than the dominance of one. As the recent Kindle incident demonstrates, there's a permanence to print that isn't true of online digital. People are upset that their copy of 1984 disappeared. But there is a worse scenario. What if the copy seemed to remain intact on the Kindle without anyone being told certain key phrases were altered while we slept? That's the world of 1984, and that's precisely what digital technology makes possible.
4. Last and most important, there was something sad about an affluent, middle-aged couple 'sans les enfants' visiting the architectural and artistic treasures of historical Europe. Like them, Europe is having too few children, and Europe lacks America's talent for blending into its culture large waves of immigrants. Demographics is destiny. The Europe of the future could very well be one that destroys its past by dynamiting its 'infidel' cathedrals and burning the art it has built up over the centuries.
G. K. Chesterton said as much when he hinted that the cultural greatness of Europe began when the Romans showed an eagerness to learn from the Greeks they had conquered. "Captive Greece took Rome captive" is how one poet put it. Chesterton extended that remark by noting the "Rome lay upon Greece like a sponge," and then pointing out that the Turkish/Islamic occupation of Greece did not have a similar result. The Turk "lay upon Greece like a rock," learning nothing. The beautiful Acropolis became a mere quarry for already cut stones. Something similar could be in Europe's future.
We should never forget that technology is just a tool. Without an overarching purpose and without people to put that purpose into concrete form and preserve it for generations that follow, it has no meaning.
bowerbird on July 24, 2009 7:54 PM:
alain, if you were to do an english translation of the video,
i'm sure lots of uni-lingual americans would appreciate it!
p.s. especially the lovey-dovey talk, but if a complete work
is too difficult, then how about just the e-book high points?
Alain Pierrot on July 26, 2009 4:01 PM:
Here is a quick and dirty translation:
"Possible... or likely?"
a movie by Francis Grosjean
featuring Alicia Alonso, Jean-Christophe Pagnac, Luc gentil, Cyril Eldin
scenario and dialogs Jean-Christophe Pagnac, Francis Grosjean
She, leaving school. — Good bye!
She, back home. — Hello!
— Morning, love!
He. — Hi, angel!
She. — I'm exhausted! mmmh! The pupils gave all they could get. Seems like it's week-end, isn't it?
— So? [she kisses him] — You have finished your book?
He. — I'm coming. My publisher has already called thrice...
He. — [he types] White-hot ... powder
— I'm done.
She. — Mmh!
He. — I send it at once to my publisher. He wants it next week in the bookshops. We'll be able to go.
She. — Good news!
At the bookseller's.
Bookseller. — Ah! Alexander! Hello, how are you?
He. — Very well, thanks! I've finished my book.
Bookseller. — Bravo!
He. — It's gone for final editing.
Bookseller. — So, finally, the title is set to...
He. — "White-hot powder".
Bookseller. — Very good! excellent!
He. — You should get it next week for download.
— I take this, "Pig Island" by Mo Hayder. Is it good? Have you read it?
Bookseller. — She is a British novelist, you'll love it!
He. — Ok, very good! I'll download it, I'm taking a break, going to Bruges.
Bookseller. — To Bruges? Then, I advise you, a Flemish author, yum!, you'll be enthusiastic! Xavier Hanotte "De Secrètes Injustices", tremendous!
He. — Very good, I'll take it.
Bookseller. — You'll download it too?
He. — I'll download it.
Bookseller. — Done!
— Well, it might be the occasion to test the new multimedia travel guide from Lonely Planet for your eBook reader.
He. — Do you think so?
Bookseller. — Certainly, it's a new way of travelling. You let yourself be guided. [he winks] I let you discover it.
He. — Well, I take everything.
— I validate... it's ok... on your side, you've got acknowledgement.. and on my side, it's paid, thanks a lot, see you soon!
Bookseller. — See you soon!
Riding the train.
She. — Yes, excellent, this guide! Bruges looks beautiful, it reminds Venice.
He. — It will provide us a change!
She. — Ah! I'll book at this superb little hotel, downtown.
— This I don't show you, because... It will be a surprise.
He. — I love the idea! Listen, this author, I think he is talented.
[he reads] — "Happiness is a thing of fragility, sometimes it is contained into a few words, a line, an atmosphere; it lasts two seconds on a clock dial, two seconds... a whole life!
She. — Not bad!
eReader. — 30 meters ahead, turn left into Stoofstraat, "Steamrooms St", public baths where men and women mixed in the Middle Ages.
She. — Stoofstraat...
He. — Here we are, Stoofstraat. So, we're in the right place...
eReader. — Head for the belfry, turn left into Mariastraat.
eReader. — The Burg is the site of the original fortified castle, built in 879. A masterpiece of gothic architecture, completed in 1421, the city hall façade is decorated with 48 statues representing the Flemish counts and countesses, and the 24 coats of arms of vassal cities of Bruges.
eReader. — In 1150 the merchant-sailors of Bruges invent free-trade, organizing the very first trade exchange of history.
At the museum
eReader. — Cambyses Judgment, painted in 1498 by Gérard David, overlooked the court room.
She. — Alexander, come and see, you'd tell they are the original!
He. — You like it?
She. — I love it, but... pity, it's in Flemish.
He. — Ah! [he swipes a code on the book]
eReader. — Restaurant La Pergola, 20 meters to the left. Enjoy your meal!
He, sitting. — Hmm...
She. — We made a good choice!
He. — Ah! [he opens the reader] Hey, look! it's the lay-out for the book cover.
She. — Oh! splendid!
He. — You think so?
She. — Yes.
He. — Tell me, I'll go under the verandah and make a few more corrections, I must send them, you don't mind?
She. — No, not at all, I must prepare my lessons.
She [preparing her documents]. — Here it is, it's done; I send this to the school.
He [annotating]. — Come on, I send.
On the beach.
[He listens to music]
She. — Ah! this is interesting. I download it at once. Hey, no, no, NO! not with the ads!
He. — That is free-trade!
She. — Ah! exactly [?]. Hop!
Back in France.
He. — Julian!
Julian. — Alex?! How are you?
He. — I'm ok, and you? Have a cup of coffee?
Julian. — Well, yes.
He. [showing his eBook] — I was about to send it to you. It's important for me that you write a paper. It is relased on Thursday. There's a complimentary press release for you. Have you ot your eReader?
Julian. — Of course!
— I'll devour it!
— I'll write my review — positive or negative! — on your blog, before publishing it.
— All right! I must go. I've got a paper that is due. Thanks for coffey.
He. — Thanks.
Julian. - You can rely upon me.
He. — All set. Hi, Julian!
Julian. — Hi, Alex!
At the bookseller's.
She. — Hello!
Bookseller. — Hello!
She, showing the display. — Does it sell?
Bookseller. — Yes, in a week, scores of downloads. I'm waiting for the printed version. I've read it, it's really good. But, I'll tell him about it.
She. — Er, Alexander suggested me to come and see you.
Bookseller. — Yes indeed. I've got something for you, on his behalf... Yes, that's it.
She, browsing the pBook. — Hmm, and in French!
Bookseller. — He asked me too to give you another surprise gift: here it is, a special from his publisher.
She. — It's a personal message!
[The cartoon says: "What do you mean, you've begun writing a second book? Wasn't the first one ok?]
In front of Beaubourg, Pompidou Center.
He gets a message: "Thanks, love. Marie".
bowerbird on July 27, 2009 12:55 AM:
you're a champ! we all owe you one big one. thank you so much!
Alain Pierrot on July 27, 2009 2:30 AM:
"It is released on Thursday. There's a complimentary press release for you. Have you got your eReader?"
Btw, don't miss Mike Cane's analysis, with all the relevant screen captures:
Part of the book vision
bowerbird on July 27, 2009 8:41 PM:
oh, mike cane is loony. this week he's going nutso
over a 2-year-old video and 3-year-old software...
if/when the apple itablet arrives, yeah, sure, it will
transform the face of electronic-books, just like
every segment is transformed once apple does it.
but some of us have been saying that for years...
or is it decades? the first time i ran into bob stein,
it was at the american booksellers association in '92,
when he was in the apple booth showing off his new
"expanded books". i was passing out poetry e-books
that i had created in hypercard, on an apple diskette...
and, just to be clear, a 10-inch form-factor machine
that can access the web is going to transform _lots_
of stuff besides e-books... the iphone has given us
some hints, yeah, but the magnitude will overwhelm.
and maybe by 2014, mike can might have bought one.
bob stein on July 28, 2009 4:57 PM:
Thanks for the translation Alain. and bowerbird, we're in synch here.
Gary Frost on July 29, 2009 7:09 AM:
The video evokes a by-gone era. A time with fixed works of catechism, but when most of life was negotiated by faith in divine connectivity. Even adventures of pilgrimage were connectivity driven and interpreted. Nothing deficient unless it is the faith and deference in connectivity itself.
Xelle on August 5, 2009 1:07 PM:
Editis made an english subtitles version of this video. We just posted it on YouTube :
Thank you for all you comments !
Kirsten Reach on August 5, 2009 7:57 PM:
Thanks for the video, Bob! Whether the prediction for the "future" stands or no, the video has a pleasant sense of connection with ebooks and the reader's surroundings - in the travel scene, but also in the cozy little bookshop. I imagine it would please those who are still skeptical of ebooks.