E-Books does anyone buy them?

I was looking at Barnes & Noble; they seem to cost as much as hardcopy books.

I bought a couple of stories by Stephen King that were available only in E-Book form. Other than that, I would much rather have an actual book. Staring at the computer screem too long gives me a headache. (so explain why I’m always here…)

I would if they were cheaper than real books. If I’m going to shell out $25, I’d rather have a paper book to sit on my shelf. One has to weigh the convenience of having the book in a smaller space vs. the inconvenience of actually having to read the thing on a tiny LCD screen. Based on that, I’d rather have a hardcopy, though I do have some public domain stuff on my Visor, for instances when I’m caught withotu a real book.

Like Jeannie, I bought a King story. (Riding the Bullet, not The Plant.)

I’d do it only if it was (1) a favorite writer, and (2) if e-book format was the only way I’d get to read it (if there was no chance of a paper format).

And you didn’t ask, but I am buying POD books, and so far, they’re fine. I was a bit concerned about product quality, binding, etc. They’re okay.

What are POD books?

carnivorousplant - Print On Demand. The books aren’t sitting in warehouses – they’re printed as ordered.

I don’t know anything about the technology or the mechanics of the transaction. It doesn’t seem very efficient, but I suppose it saves on storage space.

I think it’s mostly new writers who are selling via POD. I expect it’s one step up from a vanity press offering. Maybe half a step.

When you order from Amazon, for example, and see “this book will be available in 4-6 weeks”, that might mean it’s a POD book.

I read ebooks - but I get them for free, I’m in the business. I use them for reference or research primarily, the only ones I’ve read cover to cover were Riding the Bullet (King) and The Leap. Currently (IMHO), the technology for reading ebooks sucks - backlit screens and sitting at a desk make for uncomfortable reading. Even the dedicated reading devices (Rocketbook, etc.) are expensive and unweildy. Having said that, new technology is coming and the experience will get much better very quickly (Xerox is doing some cool stuff with electronic ink on a flat screen).

POD is something that could have great implications for publishers - currently they print a fixed number of copies of a book (the fewer they print, the more expensive each copy is) and hope that they sell. If they don’t, they get returned to the publisher, who recyles the paper for another book. Very wasteful environmentally, and makes it harder for an author to get published because of the initial expense involved in printing a first run. POD allows for much smaller runs to be printed, and soon will allow you to order almost any title from your bookstore and have it printed and bound in 15 minutes.

I see ebooks as comparable to horses a century ago. Horses were the primary means of transportation, and people had an emotional attachment to them. Along came the gas powered vehicle, and at first they were clumsy - roads were bad, they smelled, there wasn’t a lot of support for them, and they scared the horses they shared the road with. As technology improved, the savings and relative ease of use allowed them to become the primary mode of transportation. Horses are still here, of course, but they are now primarily used for recreation, not transportation.

You’re supposed to pay for them?
oh. There are plenty of free Ebooks, though.

Adobe has a free Ebook reader if you want one, adobe.com