Thursday, October 01, 2009

Hybrid Books From Publishers Like Simon and Schuster Add Video and Web Features to Reading - NYTimes.com

I hope the awkward “vook” category name doesn’t stick, but this is another sign of hypertext going mainstream

For more than 500 years the book has been a remarkably stable entity: a coherent string of connected words, printed on paper and bound between covers.

But in the age of the iPhone, Kindle and YouTube, the notion of the book is becoming increasingly elastic as publishers mash together text, video and Web features in a scramble to keep readers interested in an archaic form of entertainment.

On Thursday, for instance, Simon & Schuster, the publisher of Ernest Hemingway and Stephen King, is working with a multimedia partner to release four “vooks,” which intersperse videos throughout electronic text that can be read — and viewed — online or on an iPhone or iPod Touch.

Hybrid Books From Publishers Like Simon and Schuster Add Video and Web Features to Reading - NYTimes.com

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