I am certainly what the tech-world calls a "late adopter," for example: I only recently got a cell-phone, and that's because my wife purchased it for me, brought it home, and said: "You have two kids . . you need a phone," and then handed me a slim, white, lime green gadget that my students described as the phone a "12 year old Asian girl would have"-- and so, well behind the rest of the reading world, I have finally started knocking around the idea of getting an e-reader . . . but, as I am a disciple of Neil Postman, I always think about the pros and cons of any technology before I allow it access to my life . . . and the pros for an e-reader are pretty obvious:
1) I like to read multiple books at the same time and some of them are hefty, so it would save a lot of space and clutter,
2) I hate small font, and so I could adjust this on an e-reader,
3) my book-light would be attached to the e-reader, so I wouldn't always lose it,
4) when we travel, I like to bring a lot of books . . .
but I have decided, for now, that the cons outweigh the pros, and here they are:
1) I like to take books out of the library because (duh) it's free,
2) I like to buy cheap used books off Amazon and Half.com,
3) I don't want to spill coffee or soup onto an e-reader, while I don't care if I spill coffee or soup onto a library book,
4) this one is the most important: if I read on an e-reader, no one can see what I'm reading, and-- if these things become ubiquitous-- I won't be able to see what other people are reading, and maybe I'm obnoxious, but I like it when people see me reading the new translation of War and Peace, and I liked sharing a knowing glance with the dude I saw last week on the exercise bike at the gym reading Steven Johnson's Where Good Ideas Come From . . . and if that dude was a cute female, I might have even said a word or two about how much I liked the book . . . so really what it comes down to is that I have enough trouble making conversation, and I don't need the one topic that I am knowledgeable about taken away from me, made obscure by a convenient technology-- I'm still recovering from the switch from boom boxes to personal stereos . . . who knows what the kids are listening to on those head-phones?