Electronic books or eBooks are digital equivalents of conventional printed books and can be read one personal computers using eBooks readers (Articlesbase). Their history traces back to the project Gutenberg that was initiated by Michael Hart in 1971 as a way to find additional uses of computers to that of computing. As a result, he invented E-text that we now know as eBook and up today the project remains one of largest and most accessed free eBooks library world over. The invention of internet in 1974 prompted libraries, universities and corporations to digitize their resources for easy access by their clients. Corporations such as Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble started developing web pages to serve as virtual platform and electronic libraries to serve many customers all over the globe. Newspaper, magazine and journal publishers followed by creating digital resources to cut on publishing costs. Today, more and more reading materials are being published as eBooks and the traditional printed ones digitized (Eisenbraun 1-2).
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There are various devices in use to read eBooks including “Barnes & Noble’s nook, Amazon’s kindle and Apple’s iPad” (Costello). Except for the iPad which supports both visual and audio applications, the other two devices support only audio application. There are various versions of iPad including iBook etc while Amazon has kindle DX and kindle (Detwiler). As more and more media houses are now shifting from printed media to digital media that is published and posted on the internet, reading of eMagazines, eBooks and other e-resources may become an interactive activity. People will read and discuss the content contained in the resources as they do in other online forums such as social networks (Cope & Mason 63).
Concluding, reading books in a few years to come will completely be done over the internet as more publishers, libraries and educational institutions are shifting from printed media to electronic media. In addition, it will be possible to read books through mobile phones as nowadays manufacturers are integrating computer-like features into the phones.
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