Currently on my Kindle

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The web's printing press

Gutenberg started a cultural revolution in the 15th Century by allowing people to possess knowledge-literally holding it in their hands! Tangibility was a big step for literacy.

Now it seems we're going in reverse-our culture seems to be turning away from the printed word (though "new book" is still my favorite smell). Instead of reading from a white page, we're reading from a white screen.

Advantages? Saving trees, saving shelf space...
The true advantages are for young readers, however.
1. Books that highlight as you read.
2. 3D books that make learning fun.
3. Books that read out loud to you.
4. Books with sound effects.
5. Books with movie clips to explain new words.
6. Books that allow you to be the main character.
7. The list goes on!

The debate is currently raging about giving students iPads or iTouches. Sadly, school budgets are strapped as it is. Currently, it looks like this literacy leap is limited by the digital divide-the have's will read in 3D. For now.

Actions for the future? Making technology cheaper (or free!) for schools, or perhaps setting up a technology fund! Any rich beneficiaries out there? You'd be the coolest teacher ever if you gave your whole class iPads or Kindles :)


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