In the meantime, I was discussing ebook issues with a couple people at the show. I've written a number of print books and have signed a few at trade shows where they were on sale. I do not have a best seller but it it the thought that counts. Those dozen books I signed are really rare. :)
The problem these days with digital books is there is really no way for an author to provide a signed copy of their book! Sure, you can type in something and you could include an image of a handwritten note. It is even possible to digitally sign a PDF file using a digital certificate but these are not quite the same thing. In fact, they are all quite different because these are items that are readily copied. I wonder how someone is going to sign a Kindle if they have an ebook instead of a print book. Better yet, how do you hold a digital book signing?
There are other issues related to digital media as well. For example, any are trying to lock down content to a particular device. Lose or destroy the device and the content is lost. Sure, it is possible to destroy a print book but trashing a library tends to be a bit more difficult than breaking an e-reader.
I recently lamented the loss of Digi-Key's paper catalog (see A Sad Day As Digi-Key Goes Green And Drops Its Printed Catalog). The loss of personalized books is a bit more important and does not have a good alternative at this point.
For now. Here is my signature.
- Bill Wong