March 3, 2006

Blogs and Books

37 Signals quietly transformed tech publishing yesterday, selling 1750 copies of their new manifesto, Getting Real, at $19 on the first day. It's a very favorable case -- a high visibility company, riding a wave of popularity, in a sector with little or no resistance to electronic delivery. Still, it's a watershed.

Via Diane Greco, an outfit called Blurb will format and print extracts from your weblog in a handsome, hardcover book for about $30, quantity one. This isn't aimed at the vanity press crowd: it's a way to share an artifact with people who want it. When I make an iPhoto book for my mother, it's not because I'm pretending to be Ansel Adams. Mom doesn't want to see more Stieglitz, she wants to see her grandchildren. We only need one or two copies, but it's nice that we can make them -- and the codex book is a good format.