Reading and writing can be a personal thing. With so many new technologies emerging in today’s market, it is a person’s prerogative on how they want to be able to do their reading or writing, whether it be for business or pleasure.
Throughout both articles, all Danielle could think about was how reading and writing have really changed. We have gone through “remediation in the sense that a newer medium takes the place of an older one”(Bolter 5). These stages of “remediation” are evident throughout history, starting from use of stories and news being passed along orally to being able to advancement of visual media. Denia’s own evolutionary writing process was from pencil, to pen, to computer. Bolter stated that “digital technology is turning out to be one of the more traumatic remediations in the history of Western writing. One reason is that digital technology changes the “look and feel of writing and reading” (24). This is one of the reasons why Denia will always prefer a physical book as opposed to reading it on a Kindle tablet. Jasmine points out that she would prefer to read a physical book rather than reading it digitally because she would end up getting distracted, go off task and check her emails or shop online instead of doing the reading that needs to be done. On the same note, if Denia had no choice and the text was only available online there is a 50/50 chance she will print out the material and read it from there rather than on a screen. It’s not to say that reading it digitally isn’t wonderful, but she has bad eyesight and reading continuously on a screen makes it worse well then she’s not going to help it along.
Going from hardcover books, to paperback books to an E-Reader, visually you are looking at two different forms of writing. The experience of reading a book has changed, now there are books where the picture will interact with you from a touch or will even talk back to you. Bolter quotes E. Anna Proulx from the New York Times saying, “no one is going to read a novel on a twitchy little screen. Ever” (1994, pg A23, Bolter 3) Proulx held these strong opinions yet now millions of people have some sort of an E-Reader and even more people have read some sort of article or anything online. Danielle is more on the fence, she has an E-Reader and uses it almost everyday, but she loves to be able to crack open a book and read it that way too. Denia has a Kindle, but she didn’t purchased it herself. She only has a dictionary on it and half the time rather forgets she even has it. She’s a loyalist when it comes to books.
However Lauren brings up an interesting point from Bolter’s reading where he states, “Books no longer exercise the power they once did; in the face of the new means of information and communication to which we will have access in the future, books will no longer master our reason and our feelings “ (4). Lauren agrees with the statement as books are no longer viewed as the main source to get information from. Who needs to pick up an actual book when there are ebooks that you could read on your iPad, internet, or tablet? Even things like dictionaries and encyclopedias have made their way into digital form. Still, some people like our parents, prefer to pick up an actual book and read it rather than reading it in technological form. Bolter asks the question, “Will digital media replace print?” (Bolter 6). I believe that eventually digital media will replace print, but not right now.
One of the book series that Denia is currently reading takes place in 2060 and from what she’s been able to gather, books are a rare commodity and almost all communication is digital and books are holographic, so multiply people believing that books will soon no longer exist?
Bolter mentions that people once thought books would never be replaced by portable technology or computers because books were easier and lighter to carry and expensive. That may have been the case several years ago but now a days it seems like some printed books are larger than digital technologies. Jasmine points out that books, magazines and other publications are now being digitized so that a person can download them on their computer, iPad, or any other device instead of carrying a heavy book. Schools are also now beginning to teach children how to read digital books, because they know that sooner or later books will slowly disappear from the market. So is this “remediation” really inevitable?
So we leave our readers with the questions to ask themselves, how will life be without having actual books to hold and read? Will it really impact our lives? Is it possible to sustain both since there are people who stand firmly on both sides?