John Naughton’s Observer column this week discusses the leaked plans for Amazon’s ‘Kindle Unlimited’ service.
Amazon’s move will be as discombobulating for the book publishing industry as the advent of Spotify was for the music industry.
The analogy is a good one. Creative content is being commoditised: as a rough approximation, you can’t make money from selling music any more, only from going on tours. You can’t make a living from selling photos, only from running photography workshops. And for some time it’s been pretty rare for anyone to be the family bread-winner by writing books — you also need to teach creative writing at the local Further-Ed college — but I think it’s going to become much rarer. Expect authors to start charging a lot more for their appearances at literary festivals.
And, lest you think, “Oh, this isjust a wild idea from somebody in marketing that was leaked by accident”, it has now been launched in the US. Six quid a month for all the books you can read, available instantly.
Just think what those monks in the scriptoria would have said.
There’s a wonderful-sounding position offered on one of the University mailing lists:
Equine Ambulatory Veterinarian (Maternity Cover)
I expect they’re looking for someone who specialises in a horse’s gait. Or someone who rides around in a horse ambulance?
But perhaps not. It’s much more satisfying to think that the University of Cambridge has always traditionally employed a walking midwife for horses, perhaps one of a small team of pedestrian veterinary specialists, and this is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to apply for one of these exclusive posts.
On episode 191 of Mac Power Users, I described how I found it useful to be able to visualise the various steps of my automated ‘paperless workflow’. (Something I also wrote about here on Status-Q last year.)
A few people asked for more details, so here’s a 9-minute screencast going into some of the details.
Also available on Vimeo for the media cognoscenti!
All the world’s a toolbox
And all the men and women merely pliers