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  • Disadvantages of E-Books
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Introduction

Although there are many great aspects that surround E-Books, there many disadvantages surrounding E-Books. E-Books are electronic books.  To access electronic books on a computer or hand held device, a special devices or software programs are needed.  There are many software programs out there that support e-booking that are both free and commercialized programs.  Like anything connected to a computer, there are disadvantages and faults that could surround it.  The following are disadvantages that surround e-booking.

Disadvantages

  • E-Book Readers can cost money.  Although some E-Book Readers are free software programs, the top 10 reviewed    Readers are all commercial devices that cost money to use. The number one rated reading device, the Kindle 2, costs $259.  Of the remaining devices in the top 10, the prices range from the lowest being $199.00 to $859.00.  This does not include additional costs that surround buying or renting new books directly to the device. (2)
  • Programs need to be compatible with the computer or device.  There are other software programs that can load directly onto a computer or handheld PDA.  However, with the many operating systems that are out there and computer devices, not all programs are compatible with every computer. (5)
  • Programs need patching for security vulnerabilities.  Three major, free, software programs for E-Booking are Acrobat E-Book Reader, Microsoft Reader, and Palm Reader.  (3) Any program that is on a computer and can be connected to the internet can be risky to the computer or device by creating vulnerabilities for attackers to exploit.  For example, the website bugtraq.com follows new vulnerabilities and bugs reported a vulnerability found in the Acrobat E-Book Reader.  Like any program, especially Adobe and Microsoft products, require security patches and updates to protect against these vulnerabilities. (1)
  • Anti-Virus, Anti-Malware and Spyware may change registry information.  Often times, programs similar to SpyBot will alert the user to vulnerabilities and changes to the registry.   The registry is the components that allow a program to work.  Anytime a software program is updated, the registry entry will change.   An alert will pop up via the anti-spyware service, asking if the user will allow the registry change.  When a virus is on a program, the registry will try to change, denying it will stop the virus.  Often times after an update, allowing the change to the registry will allow the program to continue running, and denying the change will make the program malfunction.  The user may not understand the change, mistake the update for a virus, and deny a crucial registry change that allows the E-Book reader to work.
  • Not all book formats are compatible with the reader.  Every E-Book reader will allow different formats of text files to be read.  Examples of format types are PDF, Word, PDB, HTML, BBeB, etc.  Depending on the file type of the book, the reader a user has may not allow it. (2)
  • E-Book Readers require power.  E-Book readers are special devices or programs on a computer that allow the user to access the book electronically.  There is absolutely no paper involved.  If there is a power outage and the batteries die the user will not be able to access the book.  (5)
  • E-Books can cause eyestrain.  E-Books are read on a computer or special device that is viewed on a screen.  The screen does not have the same type of resolution like print on paper has. (5)
  • E-books do not have a defined life.   New technologies are always emerging; for example, new computers or hand held devices.  Software and hardware can become outdated that contain components that can run a user’s E-Book reader.  When upgrading to newer software, the user runs the risk of losing saved books or losing formatting of the document. (5)
  • E-Books can be hacked. E-book Readers are able to connect to the internet to shop for different E-books. Hackers are able to use their computers to hack E-Book readers and E-Books. People are now pirating E-Books just as they are able to pirate music.(4)

Works Cited

1. "Bugtraq." Vulnerability Found: Adobe Acrobat EBook Reader and Content Server. Web. 18 Apr. 2010. <http://seclists.org/bugtraq/2002/Jul/228>.

2."EBook Reader Review." TopTenREVIEWS. Web. 18 Apr. 2010. <http://ebook-reader-review.toptenreviews.com/>.

3."Ebook Software -- ReadersRead.com Ebooks." Readers Read(TM) -- Book Blog, Book Reviews and Book Resources. Web. 18 Apr. 2010. <http://www.readersread.com/ebooks/readebooks.htm>.

4. "Hacking Kindle – Running Ubuntu on Kindle." Best Ebook Readers- Ebook Reader Reviews - Kindle, Nook, and IPad News. Web. 18 Apr. 2010. <http://www.bestebookreaders.com/hacking-kindle-running-ubuntu-on-kindle/>

5. Xiang Yu, Tian. "Disadvantages of E-books." Ezine Articles. Web. 18 Apr. 2010. <http://ezinearticles.com/?Disadvantages-of-E-books&id=1324883>.

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