Wyoming Arts Council

London Espresso machine delivers hot type

National Public Radio’s Morning Edition reported on some new technology (see photo above) which may make a big splash in the book-selling biz:

Have you ever had that frustration of walking into a bookstore, looking for a specific book, and being told it’s out of print or not in stock?

One company wants to put an end to that. In a move some are calling the most significant step in publishing in the last 500 years, a New York company is trying to make books available on demand, printed out locally, rather than centrally as they always have been.

On Demand Books has installed a trial machine in a central London bookstore. It’s called the Espresso machine, but it has nothing to do with coffee beans. This baby’s grinding out books.

“Effectively, it’s a great big office printer stuck to a rather lovely in my opinion, but perhaps not the most aesthetically pleasing collection of technology,” says Marcus Gipps, floor manager of Blackwell’s bookstore on London’s Charing Cross Road, perhaps the bookiest corner of one of the world’s bookiest cities.

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