Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Spell binding Sunday

A link to this article on the first Espresso Book Machine in Australia came round on the listserves last week and a colleague, who knew I was going to Melbourne, asked me to go investigate and bring her back a book...

So here we are in Angus & Robertson Bourke Street with our lovely operator, Peggie, who is showing us some example books including a Lonely Planet written especially for the machine:From the menu of options I choose Espresso: Melbourne Coffee Stories for three reasons:

1. It appears to be free
2. It seems somehow apt to have the Espresso Book Machine print a book about espresso
3. It's not ugly, unlike many of the other choices!

Peggie fills the bin with paper:and enters my selection into the machine (Mac based, for the beady eyed amongst you).First, the insides are printed. This is pretty boring because it's just like a photocopier...Then the cover is printed.The insides are straightened on a bit of the machine that goes jiggedy jiggedy jiggedy (that's a technical term). You have to imagine some high speed book bouncing here:The book spine is run over a hot glue rollerand lands on the cover.The whole thing is pressed, flipped
and the edges cut to sizesnippetysnippetysnip (more technical terms!)

Out the chute at the bottom (after some completely unnecessary disco light effects)and, five minutes after we started, we have a newly born book:And an impressed onlooker...I can't wait until they decide to open the system up so people can load their own books up to print. Sort of like Blurb in your own back yard!

5 comments :

Lara said...

Super cool!

You don't mention how much it costs - is it cheaper than similar self publishing options?

Karen said...

Today I took delivery, by hand from our marvelous shopping sherpa,of this great book featured in the photos.
It looks fantastic, and i was so excited to have a book printed on the 'Expresso Book Machine'. As a serious coffee addict I was even more thrilled to see the title 'Espresso: Melbourne Coffee Stories'.
Isn't this just the coolest thing?

lovestitches said...

that is very cool!

The Shopping Sherpa said...

If I hadn't misplaced the list I could tell you exactly but from memory the prices were about the same or slightly cheaper than Australian retail: except a lot of the listed books have been out of print in like forever...

Mik said...

Very cool the University Bookstore here in Seattle just installed one so I Goggled, wait,(Googled)and found your site to see what it looks like.

Very nifty and the University bookstore is soon to allow the public to print their own books which will be cool.