Ebooks - Past, present and future

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The history of printed book is inseparably linked to the name of Johannes Gutenberg, a German who invented the printing press in the end of 15th century. Since that time books became widely spread over Europe, and the printing technology continued to evolve making printed sources less and less costly and, therefore, more and more popular.


The onset of digital technology and electronic books inspired many experts to predict the decline of conventional media and their full replacement by the new rival. A bright example of such predictions is the following statement made 17 years ago by a well-known scientist: "By the turn of the century, paper will satisfy less than 5 percent of the total commerce in information. Although education and entertainment have their own migratory paths and rates, the objective will be the same: paper is going to be replaced with electronic media" (Kounta, 1992, p.39). However, the developments that have occurred up to now suggest that there are still many uncertainties regarding whether the potential of e-Books as replacement of printed sources will ever be fulfilled.
Although e-Books are commonly perceived as one of the newest developments in computer and information technology their history can be traced to the early 1970s. ...
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