Why do we need books?

There’s this common joke. It’s depicted by this cartoon. And the joke is that with all this modern technology, smartphones, tablets, or even laptops, the next generations won’t know what books are.


Good, I say. We have to suffer all this mumbo jumbo about how glorious books are. Books are not glorious.  Books have passed their use-by date.

Everything that a book can do, a tablet can do better.  All the books in the average library can be stored in a standard tablet, or accessed on-line via a tablet.  What, therefore is the point of books? All that tree murdering and the over-producing of multiple physical copies of a piece of work that could be far more environmentally friendly passed around electronically.  Plus, the tablet can read to us, it can search for specific words or subjects, and can remember how far we got to when reading.  I mean, when was the last time a book offered the opportunity to increase or decrease the font size?  A book just sits there pointlessly taking up space.

Look at all the space taken up by libraries. Shut them all, convert them into flats for the homeless, and burn all the books as biomass to produce far more useful electricity.