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Apr 25

Can paper survive the digital age?

Posted on Saturday, April 25, 2015 in Links

E book

We have long heard about the demise of paper in the digital age, but will there ever be a time when we don’t use it?Read more here.

As long as there are still real, printed books, I don’t mind.

Oct 17

“My” book

Posted on Friday, October 17, 2008 in Writing

Today, I saw ‘my’ book ‘live’ for the first time. Well, I’d already seen a copy in real life. We had a chance to edit it before the real edition went into print. But now it’s actually available in bookstores. Yay. Ok, it’s not really my book. It’s a book where I’ve contributed two stories and poem. But at least it’s the first time I’ve had anything published on paper.

Oct 15

Papers or trash?

Posted on Wednesday, October 15, 2008 in Other

My mom loves to read the morning papers. The paper editions, not the online versions. Since I’m frequently bored, I usually read them too, but I’m not nearly as enthusiastic. Why? There are several reasons, actually. One: it wastes enormous amounts of paper, kills trees and contributes to the destruction of our forests. Besides, in the morning it’s news, in the evening it’s trash. Another reason is that there are all these supplements. Some – like the one about culture – are fine, but the majority – about cars, buying homes, sports etc – are just trash, right away. Worthless spam that my mom has to pay for. That’s why I really like the online versions better. I get to read what I’m interested in and I can leave the rest. Except for the ads, that slow the site down until they drive me crazy, but that’s another story…

Oct 31

An old craft

Posted on Wednesday, October 31, 2007 in Humanities

First there was Gutenberg, in 15th century Germany. His invention wasn’t popular with everyone in the establishment. This evolved. Later on, there was even mass production of books.

You might be wondering, why I find this so interesting. It’s very simple. I make my own books. Of course, I also write books and naturally I read other books too, my own, and those that have already been published.

But I’m also learning how to bind books. When my teacher/instructor, who is also my mother, has taught me this fantastic art, I’ll be able to create books from a pile of paper, bind paperbacks or other ‘simpler’ types of books, and repair torn books.

Even if I hadn’t been a writer (of course I’m a writer, even if I haven’t been published – yet) I would have wanted to know how to do this. In case that hasn’t been made clear to you yet, I love books.

But binding books has a more direct connection to my own family. I happen to belong to the third generation of bookbinders in this family.. Some of the tools and other things you need to bind books, have been handed down to my mother from her father, my grandfather.

My mother and I are using the same tools my grandfather did, fifty years ago and more, and we are practicing the same craft.

We even have an old black and white photo of him sewing a book, as it is called in bookbinding. The sewing frame is still here too, and we use it. That’s continuity.

People have been able to make books for close to six hundred years, and here we are, at our house, doing the same thing, more or less. Of course, we’re amateurs, and I’m only starting to learn, but still. My mother and I, and all the other amateur bookbinders are carrying on this old craft.

That’s pretty fantastic. Cool, quite simply. The 15th century meets the 21.

Oct 30

The Revolution

Posted on Tuesday, October 30, 2007 in Humanities, Writing

A part of the revolution (and evolution). It feels a little like that. One little link in the long chain since the the art of writing was invented in Mesopotamia maybe five thousand years ago.

In an article that I read recently it says that the blog – the one you’re reading now is just one example among many – is a part of the evolution since Gutenberg invented the printing process. So – you and I and everyone else are a stage of the evolution.

In this article there was also something really interesting about how this collective way of expressing oneself will affect our ‘collective brain’ and society.

Really fascinating and we – you and I and all other bloggers – are a part of the revolution. We are watching history being made.

Once upon a time, printed books were viewed as a threat against high culture. Today the internet might be perceived as more of a threat than an asset. Others don’t ‘believe’ in the blog. But if the spies don’t win, if the greedy money grabbers are allowed to win, then maybe five hundred years from now, we’ll look back on the breakthrough for the internet as a new phase in cultural history and blogging as a part of journalism, as important as perspective in art, recorded music, literature in the form of printed books or printed newspapers.

Not so long ago, you couldn’t find out about current affairs and incidents that might have occurred, by opening your paper in the morning. People didn’t know what a paper was. Nowadays you can get news in many different forms, but back then you had to be grateful if you could hear about something, orally, from someone who had been present and seen what was going on.

It’s easy to forget that a blog isn’t just a cool kind of homepage, where you can post photos of yourself or post quizzes with images.

Think about the crisis in Burma – the blog was one of the most important ways of communicating with the outside world. That might give you another view of blogging. The medium is certainly versatile and important.

Long live the blog!


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