There is something about the chilly winter air that leaves book lovers eager to curl up inside with their favourite paperback. However, since the creation of the eBook, an ever-growing number of easily portable electronic books have been assuming the place of the regular novel. The eBook is not new to the literary scene as Michael Hart created it in 1971, but only recently it has become affordable and available to the masses.
In 2010, Apple released the eBook app for the iPad. It is a simple and convenient way for individuals to have fast access to all forms of literature and encourages reading through a new medium. The eBook even provides a practical solution for those of us who suffer from “novel ADD” and must be reading no less than three books at a time, as it prevents any unnecessary “book-carrying” back pain. Its presence along the streets of Toronto, on public transit and even in universities is enough to remind one that we really do live in a technological era.
Technology is not just changing the literary medium, but is affecting other traditional avenues too; an example is David Hockney’s recent exhibit at the ROM where he used iPads as a medium for his artwork. His exhibitions are in continuous evolution as he is able to email new pieces to each exhibit at the touch of a screen. It is no new revelation that technology is changing the way we relate to art and literature as a whole. With the increasing use of technology as a medium for art and literature, the question remains; what is to become of our beloved paperback novel?