It was a curiosity. Now seeing people with them is becoming as common as seeing people reading paper acim. I don’t think the majority of the population has an e-reader yet, but the trend is headed that way. (Please note that for the purposes of this article I am relying on my experiences using a Kindle reader, although in most cases, the same issues are true of the Nook and other readers.)
While some concern exists that paper books will become extinct, plenty of reasons remain for why paper books remain preferable to e-books. Most of these reasons simply have to do with convenience or personal preferences, and now having used a Kindle, I know none of them are seriously frustrating complaints, but you might want to keep a few paper books around anyway.
Following are ways that paper books are superior to e-books and e-book readers as well as some complaints about e-books and e-book readers that people perceive as disadvantages. I have tried to answer these complaints, when possible.
No Page Numbers: There are reasons why Kindle does not have page numbers, and they are good reasons, but they still annoy me. Because you can alter the font size on Kindle, it might take two screens to read a page or three or four screens depending on how large you want the font. Consequently, one person might read a thousand screens and another only seven hundred to read a book. Kindle tries to compensate for this by using a percentage graph at the bottom of the screen that will let you know you are 38% and then 39% of the way through the book and so on. But my issue is I want to know how long a book is so I know how much time I must commit to reading it.
The percentages do not tell me how long the book is because if I read a long book, say 500 pages, it may be six or seven screens to equal 1%, while a shorter book of say 200 pages might only need two screens to equal 1%. I’ve complained about this page number issue to other Kindle users but most don’t seem to think it’s an issue, and I am adjusting to it. I’ve found I can look up how many pages the paper book is on Amazon to get an idea and then I can figure if the book is 500 pages, for every 1% I read, I know that’s about five pages. Still, it’s kind of like using the English measuring system and being asked to switch to the Metric system. I’ll get used to it but it will take time.