My experience with e-books and e-readers has been … interesting. I’m still undecided if I enjoy reading a book on a Kindle more than holding the actual book. I can say for sure I enjoy being able to take a portable library with me wherever I go, reading it wherever I am, and I enjoy the reading experience every bit as much as turning pages. It’s taken me a while to be able to say that, but with the Kindle, I am drawn as much into the text as I am when it is printed on paper. Though, I like to own a book, as opposed to only owning a right to read my “book” on my gizmo, when it really exists “out there” in a cloud on some servers, somewhere, which download it to my device. My gizmo will grow old and I’ll have to buy a new gizmo and the book in some new format…once I own a book, it’s there. I don’t have to upgrade it, or update it, or buy a new one in order to read it.
My colleague, Laura Lane, sent me this interesting article declaring that the book will remain the better reading experience because of the “non-linear thinking” it encourages.
Here’s the link to the article.
Here’s a snippet from the article:
But if we stop reading on paper, we should keep in mind what we’re sacrificing: that nonlinear experience, which is unique to the codex. You don’t get it from any other medium — not movies, or TV, or music or video games. The codex won out over the scroll because it did what good technologies are supposed to do: It gave readers a power they never had before, power over the flow of their own reading experience. And until I hear God personally say to me, “Boot up and read,” I won’t be giving it up.
This illustration is even more astounding when I compare the iPhone 4 to my first Macintosh, the Mac SE, which I purchased in 1987.
Below are the tech specs for the SE. Note: It weighed 17 pounds. But no worries, I had a big canvas bag which made carrying it around “easy.” The iPhone, on the other hand, I must keep clipped to my belt or else I have a bad habit of “misplacing” it.
Oh, really? Michael Hyatt, CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishers, has a provocative blog post challenging something all publishers hear whenever they talk about e-books. I’ve experienced it too. Whenever I put up a post on e-books, or talk about my Kindle 2, or how Concordia Publishing House is moving into e-books, sure enough, I receive a flurry of flustered comments from book-lovers who recite all the reasons they know, they just know, e-books will never really catch on and why books are better. Are books better? It depends. Do I love books? Huh? Is the Pope Catholic? Am I enjoying e-books? Yes, very much. I own and use a Kindle 2. I have downloaded to my iTouch iPod three of the “big players” in e-book readers, including: Stanza, eReader and the Kindle app for the iPhone/iTouch. I like each of them. Read Michael’s post and then tell me what you think. He has several related links to other articles he has written about e-books as well for you to check out. My thesis is this: if you enjoy reading, you will enjoy e-books. And, with all due respect to e-book detractors, I have yet to meet a vociferous anti-e-book person who actually has spent much time at all with an e-book reader, a modern one, not some clunky thing from the late 1990s.
Please be sure to take advantage of a limited-time offer from Concordia Publishing House. Get the Concordia edition of the Book of Concord *and* the complete ESV Bible in digital/computer format for only $19.99. This is a self-contained product and installs the software you need to run it on your computer, the Libronix system. It works on PCs and Macs running the Parallels or Bootcamp software. Pass the word on to the Lutheran blogosphere. This price is good from May 19-June 1.
Libronix library users: if you have the Triglotta in Libronix, from Northwestern Publishing House, and the Concordia digital edition from Concordia Publishing House, you can link the two resources in such a way that you can have the German and Latin original language.
Note: This is a huge "wow" factor! I have, for example, six windows open now as I read/study the Confessions: The older Concordia Triglotta English, the Concordia edition, the Tappert edition, the Kolb edition, then the German and the Latin of the BOC. Awesome!
Note II: This feature only works in the PC version of Libronix at this point. The native Macintosh version is still in Alpha stage and does not yet offer this functionality.
Again, thanks to Pr. Jeremiah Gumm for these instructions:
Here’s the "How to" guide that I sent out
to the "Logos for Lutherans" Group today:
Pastor Jermiah Gumm posted this review of the Libronix edition of Concordia: The Lutheran Confessions on his blog site, and I’m passing it along here. I asked him to consider posting the precise "how to" on linking the Concordia edition to the Triglotta edition, so you can have the original languages up at the same time for comparison and study. Here are Pastor Gumm’s comments:
It finally arrived!
After weeks of waiting and then dealing with a shipping snag, this
afternoon a new Lutheran addition to my Libronix Digital Library System
arrived at my doorstep. I finally got my copy of Concordia: The Lutheran Confessions on CD-ROM (The 2nd Edition)!
Earlier this month, Concordia Publishing House (CPH) released the
Libronix version of their new Reader’s Edition of the Book of Concord.
Since I just got it today, I’ve only been able to check out a few of
its amazing tools, but personally, I’m blown away by what you’re
capable of doing. Some highlights I’ve discovered already:
- A Book of Concord Reading Guide: The daily reading
guide from the print edition can also be found in the digital edition
AND can be easily used on your computer for your own daily confessional
readings! The easy readability of this edition of the Book of Concord
will, God-willing, make the Lutheran Confessions more accessible to
called workers and laymen alike!
- Links to Luther’s Works: Back in late 2001, I was able to purchase Luther’s Works on CD-ROM,
which tied right into Libronix. Besides saving me a ton of bookshelf
space, it has proven time and again to be a fantastic resource to
search the works of Luther in a quick fashion. In CPH’s Concordia
Digital Edition you can find easy links between the Book of Concord AND
Luther’s Works! Very cool!
- Woodcuts: One of the neatest aspects of the print
edition of Concordia was the variety of appropriate woodcuts and
artwork from the era of the Lutheran Reformation up through the 1580
publication of the Book of Concord. In the digital edition, CPH did
include all the woodcuts that were in the text of the print edition, a
fact I appreciate as these woodcuts were often included in printings of
the Book of Concord centuries ago.
- Triglotta and Concordia Together: One of the desires expressed in our circles, including in the Wisconsin Lutheran Quarterly and even in comments
on this blog, was that the new Reader’s Edition might eventually
replace the old, wooden English translation of Bente & Dau
alongside the Latin and German in an updated Concordia Triglotta. Though such an update does not exist in print, if you own the Concordia Reader’s Edition and the Logos edition of the Concordia Triglotta from Northwestern Publishing House (now being updated and upgraded to mesh better with Libronix and soon to be part of The Northwestern Publishing House Electronic Library),
you can actually link up the new English translation with the Latin and
German editions from the Triglotta (as well as the more literal English
translation of Bente & Dau, if one so desires!). It makes for a
very cool setup for the study of the Lutheran Confessions.
As I said, these are just a few of the amazing tools I’ve discovered
for myself. There’s plenty more I’m sure I’ll uncover in the future. If
you use Libronix or even if you don’t have it (you can install the
Reader’s Edition independently onto your computer), I would definitely
recommend getting your hands on the digital edition of Concordia: The Lutheran Confessions on CD-ROM.
One other reminder/encouragement/note: If you’ve used Libronix for a while or are just getting into it, I recommend joining the Logos for Lutherans
group. Pr. Aaron Frey, who teaches Winterim courses on the use of
Libronix for the pastoral ministry at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary,
started the group back in January and since then, the group has grown
to nearly 100 members. The group was created to help confessional
Lutherans, especially confessional Lutheran pastors and seminary
students, in learning how to use Libronix for the study of the original
languages. Besides joining in the discussions amongst the group, you’ll
also find helpful links, various resources and great ideas as you use
Libronix to study the Word of God and share its treasures with your
flock. I’ve included the group site under my links.
I was just informed that Libronix is offering a pre-publication special price on a new collection of resources for Libronix, from Northwestern Publishing House. Here is where you can read more about it.