We will miss our book-filled bookshelves (at least for a while)

This article on the proliferation of incompatible electronic book formats and digital rights management (DRM) standards for book content is a stark reminder that much of what is digital is incompletely archived, if at all. This is particularly the case for our personal collections. I have some favorite novels and text books which I can still pick off my shelves in my office months or decades after I first purchased them. Until that unlikely day that all digital books are sold without DRM or that one DRM/encoding is adopted by all electronic book vendors, I will have to hope against hope that the vendor of the e-book I also use will remain in business. Otherwise, I will have to regularly repurchase all the books I purchased in electronic form every few years. Or just reread those older and less evanescent paper-based books.

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