1. Beyond the All in One. Suppose you had a machine that enabled you to wash your clothes, watch television programmes, listen to the radio, play CDs, and cook the dinner: would you give it house‐room for long? There seems to be emerging a view among IT pundits that the era of the all‐in‐one Personal Computer is passing, to give way to a the use of a range of digital devices dedicated to specific functions. It is in this context that that hoary old concept, the electronic book, is allegedly finding its spot in the sun — after years of being impugned as not at all suitable for the beach.
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