Since the growth of the internet, books publishers have had to change their policies and strategies to compete against this new phenomena, and most of them have coped pretty well in doing so. There will always be place on the shelf for a best-selling novel, or technical manual. And let's be honest, there people still like to sit and read a good book, and often in places where the internet hasn't arrived to yet.
Where the internet comes into its own is helping to publish books that are of a semi technical nature or cater to a very specific audience. Before the internet came along, these books either never made it into print or disappeared because the publishers didn't have much of a budget to promote the book properly and it gradually disappeared without trace.
Thankfully the internet has seen an end to all of that, and nowadays every book on any subject has the chance of reaching it audience through the wonders of the world wide web. One of the first companies to realise the potential of the internet as an online bookshop was Amazon Press, who have become an internet legend as a result. In the wake of Amazon's success a number of other similar online enterprises have sprung up, allowing the public to order the book of their choice online, without having to leave home.
Even more interesting is the recent development of E-books, which has helped to take book buying to the next stage. These mini-books come in a totally downloadable format (usually Adobe PDF) and can either stored on a computer's hard disc or printed out to be read later. E-books can be pretty short, sometimes only twenty or thirty pages and can even reach as high as 300 pages, Whatever their size, they contain information on just about any subject you can think of.
Even more dramatic is the arrival online of what are known as e-tablets. These are in effect mini-computers that allow the download of what can be described as a digital book. Someone who has made the investment in buying an e-tablet can then browse the many online e-book stores that have sprung up, and choose a book that they want to read. The big advantage is that the download is immediate, with no packing and shipping costs to pay, and the reader can enjoy their e-book, when they want and where they want.
A particularly popular topic to write online about is gay rights and cultural diversity, and nowhere is this more evident than at www.gaychicagomag.com
Online books are becoming more and more accessible, especially with the advent of the iPad, the Amazon Kindle etc, so to keep on top of the developments in this field, you need to have some good technology resources to hand
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