What a Difference Two Decades Make

23 05 2011

From guest blogger, Theresa Crater

May 2031:  Remember back in 2011 when we wondered if the print book would die? Or whether to buy a Kindle or an I-Pad or a Nook or to just read on our cell phones? Ha! Remember cell phones? Who could have imagined what changes were to be wrought by going digital?

I don’t teach anymore, but now you can teach from anywhere—literally. Classes can contain people from 10 different countries of all ages, genders, etc. Not that anybody thinks about these things much anymore. Yeah, we still have different cuisines, different holidays, and we still like to dress to fit the climate, but we’re one world now. Most people speak English, Chinese and Spanish in addition to whatever their regional language is.

Remember all those books? Packing them up in cardboard boxes and lugging them to your next house? Buying one more bookshelf? They collected so much dust. I loved them, though, and didn’t think anything could replace the feel of a book in my hands.

Freedom won, though, and mobility. Now anyone can read anything anywhere anytime. It’s all available at the touch of a button.

Remember when we worried about eBook piracy and if quality writing would get choked out by the plethora of self-published B- writing? Now, writers get lifetime income after getting their master’s status. They can take on apprentices if they wish. Yeah, people still hit the publish button before they’re ready, but this guild system really works.

Oh, we saved the books—at least one copy of everything on each continent. It’s easy to travel there, but fewer and fewer people go. I don’t think we’ll let the physical books go altogether, though. Best to have a hard copy backup somewhere. Just in case.

To think I used to pay such a large mortgage to have enough space for my family and my books. What a relief.

Beneath the Hallowed Hill

The Illuminati have opened a hole in time, and now one of them is stepping through

Theresa Crater writes urban fantasy and mysteries. Her Power Places series includes Under the Stone Paw and Beneath the Hallowed Hill. She teaches writing and British literature. She can see the whole front range of the Rockies from her back yard. Visit her at http://theresacrater.com

Under the Stone Paw

One shot at unlocking the secrets buried beneath the Sphinx

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4 responses

23 05 2011
Theresa Crater

Thanks, Justine. I hope things really do work out this well.

23 05 2011
justinegraykin

My pleasure. Things rarely work out quite as well as one hopes, nor as badly as one fears. But we need to be ready for either.

23 05 2011
Lynda Williams

Very SciFi Justine. 🙂 Wonder if we’ll be beyond mobiles in twenty years and using implanted chips.

23 05 2011
justinegraykin

We will be assimilated. Resistance is futile.
*snort* Sorry, I couldn’t resist. Seriously, though, Phoebe posted a link on the Broad Universe FB page to a NYTimes article. It cites Joshua Foer as speculating “that Apple is developing an iPhone that would not require the use of fingers on keyboards. Ultimately, Foer imagines, the commands would come straight from your cerebral cortex. (Apple refused to comment.)”

Somehow I’d more expect something like this coming from the Dark Side, that is to say, Microsoft, except that it wouldn’t work. Commands sent to your mobile would instead turn on a blender in your kitchen.

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