Mashable (of all places) has an interesting set of points as to why digital textbooks are not quite all they are made out to be:
- Cost savings (only 12.5% cheaper)
- No standard format
they also quote the Dean of the University of Texas School of Information.
“Fighting 700 years of human familiarity with paper is a huge challenge.”
The familiarity with paper, and the act of leaving marks in/on physical space may be something that we won’t be able to get over for a very long time, especially when it will take at least another generation of educators before we have a group teaching youngsters and preservice teachers who are themselves fully literate in the digital realm (digital residents as it were). Hopefully by then computing and electrical power will be cheap and ubiquitous with interfaces that are human centric. We’ll also have to deal with this idea of ownership. Of the three hurdles I’ve defined, just as with those put forward by Mashable, the final point will be the most difficult. Even more difficult than getting students to remember texts and for instructors to use then entire book.