Friday, July 25, 2008

The Death of Paper

My column this week is about electronic paper:
Imagine getting out of bed at the crack of dawn, sitting down for breakfast, and opening up your newspaper. The top headline story is about a hit-and-run accident that happened earlier, about 3 a.m. Though you read that the perpetrator has not been identified and no information is yet available regarding the victim's condition, the article's author does inform you that the police are searching for a white minivan.

But then, just as you're skimming the story's last few paragraphs, the whole front page goes blank for a second and flashes "updating" a few times before displaying the new headline: "Local man apprehended for fatal collision with cyclist." After the first three paragraphs, most of the article remains unchanged from the first time you read it, but the new information is easy to spot because it's displayed in bold text. However, that formatting goes away as you glance over at the weather column to determine whether you ought to bring your umbrella to work. Finally, you place your cereal bowl in the sink and toss your newspaper back on your desk before rushing out the door.

Read the rest here.

I've only got one more column to write while I'm still on the metro staff. After that I'll be able to tackle much more politically charged issues. I can barely wait.

No comments: