We have discussed the ebook conundrum for book lovers and fans of the actual printed word and paper. The temptation is stronger every day for these diminishing holdouts to cross over to the “electronic” side.

Do you love the physicality of books piled on an overflowing bookshelf? Or the feel of the paper as your turn the pages one by one? Swishing your finger across the screen or pushing a button does not give you that nostalgic feeling or connection. I can say that as a book lover and e-reader owner, I do. Yes, I gave in and I don’t regret it.

However, recently I searched and found a young adult book I read as a pre-teen that was no longer in print, “The Children Who Stayed Alone,” by Bonnie Bess Worline. There was something about the memory of reading this book that made me have to have it. It was that link to the memory that drove my search. Even if I had found it in electronic format, it would not have been the same as turning those yellowed, musty pages as I read about Phoebe and Hartley’s adventures. Metadata, schmedtadata….sometimes paper is the best.

Wired brought this topic to our attention in their article, “Contextual metadata could make ebooks more evocative.”

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Access Innovations, the world leader in thesaurus, ontology, and taxonomy creation and metadata application.