One of the things I think about most when I think of the future of books is the language that we will use to describe books. Will digital books actually be called "books" in the future? Will a new word emerge? Although "e-books" has become the standard terminology, it's a term I actually never use. Mainly because I think it sounds stupid. (Do we say e-songs? or e-movies?) But part of the reason why I avoid this term is because the "electronic" world and the "physical" world are increasingly becoming one in the same. My world is simply the things that I interact with all day long, be it on a screen or a piece of paper.
The reason language is so important when talking about books is that new forms of storytelling are emerging that aren't really books. Or are they? Take this, for instance. The Good Man, a project by created by Pedro Ivo Hudson. He says of this project, "This project is about experimentations." He further explains that "The Good Man is about visual transcription of a narrative. Transformed into HTML elements and animated in CSS3, this project aims its efforts to build an animation, in a web browser. Without images, just web fonts and shapes, it’s intended to run smoothly in modern web browsers and to be as scalable as possible." I would not consider this a book. But, one could call it a book, I suppose. I would call it a story. An interactive storytelling experience, maybe. If it was longer, would it be called a book?
Regardless of what it is called, it is a beautiful project. One of the most fascinating aspects of this design is that it is very representational, not literal at all. The animation feels almost more like a game or screen-saver than a narrative story. It has a mesmerizing quality and the voiceover is fantastic and futuristic. This project has a lot of implications for how storytelling visuals might work in the future. Take a moment out of your day to enjoy it.