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Bye Bye Books

It may be remembered as a totem of a gigantic shift, like the first test-tube baby or the birth of the six billionth person. Or, we may be exaggerating. Either way, this does seem like a big deal. The Oxford English Dictionary, which is a reasonably good represetative of the more traditional end of the book publishing industry, says it might not bother releasing a book version of the next edition of its mammoth tome.

Now, this may not be totally surprising. As Engadget points out, 'The complete Oxford English Dictionary hardback set costs $1,165 and weighs in at a whopping 130 pounds,' spread across 20 volumes, and it's likely the next edition - due in a few years - would be larger in line with the explosion in new tech-related words. So there's, you know, a logic to this, and by the time the new edition is actually ready we might hardly ever be using books at all.

But still.... but still. This is the Oxford English Dictionary! Dumbledore has a copy of this damn thing on his bookshelf! It's hard to imagine him hitting up OED.com.

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