Major Technological Breakthrough:
BIO-Optic Organized Knowledge Device (BOOK)

The Mississippi State University English Department announces its employment of a radically innovative technological device, the BOOK. BOOK is a revolutionary breakthrough in technology: no wires, no electric circuits, no batteries, nothing to be connected or switched on. It is so easy to use, even a child can operate it (fig.1).fig 1; adolescent reading to child

Compact and portable, it can be used anywhere--even when sitting in an armchair by the fire, yet powerful enough to hold as much information as a CD-ROM disc.

Here is how it works: BOOK is constructed of sequentially numbered sheets of paper (recyclable), each capable of holding thousands of bits of information. The pages are locked together with a custom-fit device called a binding, which keeps the sheets in their correct sequence.

Opaque Paper Technology (OPT) allows manufacturers to use both sides of the sheet, doubling the information density and cutting costs. Experts are divided on the prospects for further increases in information density. For now, BOOKs with more information simply use more pages.

Each sheet is scanned optically, registering information directly into the user's brain. A flick of the finger takes the user to the next sheet. BOOK may be taken up any time and used merely by opening it.

BOOK never crashes or requires re-booting, though like other display devices, it can become unusable if exposed to excessive amounts of rainwater, coffee, or Jolt cola. BOOK's browse feature allows the user to move instantly to any sheet, and to move forward and backward with ease. Many BOOKs include an index feature, which pinpoints the exact location of any selected information for instant retrieval.

An optional "BOOKmark" accessory allows the user to open the book to any previously chosen sheet (such as the place where the user last stopped reading) even if the BOOK has been turned off ("closed"). BOOKmarks fit universal design standards; thus a single BOOKmark can be used in BOOKs by various manufacturers. Conversely, numerous BOOKmarks can be used in a single BOOK if the user wants to store numerous views at once. The number is limited only by the number of pages in a book.

The user can also make personal notes next to the BOOK text entries with an optional programming tool: the Portable Erasable Nib Cryptic Intercommunication Language Stylus (PENCILS).

Portable, durable, and affordable, BOOK is being hailed as a precursor of a new entertainment wave. In addition, BOOK's appeal seems so certain that thousands of content creators have committed to the platform. Innovative users of this technology include Daniel Defoe, Charles Dickens, James Joyce, Virginia Woolf, Flannery O'Connor, Toni Morrison, and Geoffrey Chaucer. BOOKs by all these creators, and more, are utilized by the MSU English department.

[original author unknown; slightly modified]


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Last Modified: July 27, 2009