There is a lot of talk about how ebooks are killing old-fashioned books. It's true that paper books are still pretty low-tech, but that doesn't mean they have to stay that way. Maybe there could be a future where books are actually computer peripherals. The Elektrobiblioteka prototype shows us that it's a real possibility with this teaser video.
Elektrobiblioteka (Polish for "electrolibrary") is half art installation and half peripheral. Designed by Waldek Wegrzyn, it lets users actually control a computer with a book. Granted, it's no ordinary book; it's loaded with all kinds of specialised circuitry. Likewise, you don't use it to navigate your desktop, but rather as a way to interact with a very specific program. Of course, this very specifically designed application is really the only way this coupling makes sense, but the result has potential.
The electronic version of Elektrobiblioteka is available to anyone online, but there are only a couple of the physical book prototypes, so you only get to see one half of the pair in person. Still, it's easy to imagine how a digital component could make physical magazines, books and newspapers more relevant — or at least less irrelevant. It's a neat concept that kind of makes me think of a digital pop-up book. Who knows — it might just keep print alive someday. [Electrobiblioteka via PhysOrg]