From the Boston Globe:
Google Inc. is giving 2 million books in its digital library a chance to be reincarnated as paperbacks. As part of a deal announced Thursday, Google is opening up part of its index to the maker of a high-speed publishing machine that can manufacture a paperback-bound book of about 300 pages in under five minutes. The new service is an acknowledgment by the Internet search leader that not everyone wants their books served up on a computer or an electronic reader like those made by Amazon.com Inc. and Sony Inc.
On Demand’s printing machines already are in more than a dozen locations in the United States, Canada, Australia, England and Egypt, mostly at campus book stores, libraries and small retailers. The Harvard Book Store will be among the first already equipped with an instant-publishing machine to have access to Google’s digital library.
Starting Sept. 29, Bostonians can stop in the privately owned Harvard Bookstore in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and have their books printed in front of them. Or they can order it over the phone and have the store deliver it â€” by bicycle.
Thereâ€™s a certain irony to that, too, according to Google spokeswoman Jennie Johnson, since the bookstore is right next to Harvardâ€™s library, one of the libraries that partnered with Google to turn its millions of books into an online library of the future.
â€œMost people canâ€™t get into the Harvard Library, but you can print their books next door,â€ Johnson said.
So yes, we’re getting one of the machines. I can’t wait to see it work!