Monday, January 08, 2007

My Newspaper: buh bye, legacy media!

The Fedex truck pulled up this morning.

They dropped off my newspaper replacement. It's a very specialized printer called NewsPrinter.

You plug it in and then attach the USB jack to your computer.

Then watch your computer monitor.

A really cool application automatically starts and it interviews you. It asks just a few questions. What time each morning do you want your newspaper printed? How many pages? And do you want to preview an on-screen copy?

If you're okay with the layout, you quit. Elapsed time since Fedex arrived? About four minutes. When you wake up in the morning, your newspaper is already printed and waiting for you at the printer. And it's up-to-the-minute.

The software can even tell where you're located, so the Local section will default to your area.

Want to change the defaults? The software can actually step you through an easy configuration. Need coverage of your favorite football or baseball team? Just choose the team's logo from the list. The neatest thing about NewsPrinter? You can completely customize every aspect of the newspaper down to the tiniest detail.

Getting older? You can completely adjust the size of the typeface and headlines.

So who makes money from NewsPrinter? How's the business-model work? I'm not really sure, but the printer manufacturer didn't charge me for the printer. I pay for paper (of course) and special inkjet cartridges, the price of which I'll admit are slightly inflated.

The content is provided by blogging networks and, I think, the McClatchy news service. The news service has a partnership with the printer manufacturer and gets a cut of NewsPrinter ink cartridges.

I have two words for legacy media and the New York Times, specifically.

Buh. Bye.

Also see:
American Thinker: Thomas Lifson likens Time Magazine to the Titannic in Moving the Deck Chairs.

Author's note: I'm aware of emerging technologies like digital paper. I just don't think these are quite mature enough to replace the hardcopy newspaper quite yet. Maybe someday.

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