(Originally posted on August 8 at my old blog site)
The New York Times has run a story about a new device that will create a print-on-demand book in 15 minutes and at a cost of about 3 bucks. Let's call it the latte book machine.
“But think what this means,” said Dane Neller, a partner of On Demand Books. “It’s not just bookstores and libraries. This is small. It could go into a Kinko’s, or a coffee shop, or a hotel or a hospital or a cruise ship."
AOL News noted in a follow up article how "this machine would be particularly useful for rare books, out-of-print titles and limited-run novels."
Such devices will only further expand the availability of data once lost to rare books, with a side effect being the further depression of prices those titles once commanded. I also predict it will further weaken the market for well-crafted hardcover reprints of ACW classics such as those created by Morningside.