Google Going Backwards in eBook Tech



It’s no secret Google’s angling for the eBook market. Their book settlement, if ever approved, would give them a library of over two million out-of-print or out-of-copyright works. But a new deal could make those books available for more than just eReaders.

The deal with On Demand Books provides Google’s copies of out of copyright works directly to ODB’s instant book-printing and binding “Espresso” machines. (I’ve heard these things can print and bind a book in four minutes. Talk about hot off the presses.)

While this isn’t exactly a huge leap forward for eBook technology, the deal does show how serious Google is about its library (and, you know, cataloging the world’s information). Currently, there are 16 Espresso machines located in bookstores and libraries around the world (in the US, Canada, UK, Australia and Egypt, especially at university bookstores—including my alma mater), with 18 more coming in the next year.

What do you think? Can you wait to get your hands on a paper version of Sartor Resartus / Lectures on Heroes / Chartism / Past and Present, or will you hold out for the e-version?

Photo of Espresso Book Machine by Jeffrey Beall (no relation ;) )