This week’s Booking Through Thursday question asks:
With the advent (and growing popularity) of eBooks, I’m seeing more and more articles about how much "better" they can be, because they have the option to be interactive … videos, music, glossaries … all sorts of little extra goodies to help "enhance" your reading experience, rather like listening to the Director’s commentary on a DVD of your favorite movie.
How do you feel about that possibility? Does it excite you in a cutting-edge kind of way? Or does it chill you to the bone because that’s not what reading is ABOUT?
I’m of two minds about technology making books “better.” On one hand, the thought of glossaries, dictionaries, or even character bios for long series, seems like a wonderful idea to me. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve tried to dive back into a multi book series after a long time away, and found myself confused because I didn’t remember who everyone was and how they related to each other. Adding extra material giving that background information would make long series less intimidating for me, especially if the author is still writing them. I think having these extras would entice me to read more of them.
I also think that adding sounds, pictures, and interactive segments to books for kids would get more of them reading. Let’s face it; kids today, even young ones, are used to technology. They know and understand all about video games and the internet. They feel comfortable with it, and I think that they need something flashy to keep their attention on something like a book. It doesn’t make noise or move or demand that they interact with it, and I think that in today’s entertainment environment, that no longer cuts it. There needs to be something else to get them hyped on books and reading.
Now for me, I don’t want any sparkles or flashy gimmicks when I read. I don’t want music or hoops to jump through to read a book. I only need a good story. That’s it! I’m already invested in the whole concept of reading – I don’t need anything other than a quiet room, a comfy place to chill, and a compelling book to be happy.
What do you think about using technology to make books better?