Books + videos = Vooks?

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Just when you thought you were maybe getting used to the idea of climbing into bed at night with Kindle instead of a book, here comes another new notion. And if you're a traditionalist, this one may send you UNDER the bed.

It's the Vook – basically, the book + videos, a multimedia hybrid of book, online video, and Twitter stream. You can read all about it today's New York Times.

The Times explains that Vook is the name of the fledgling company started up by Silicon Valley entrepreneur Bradley Inman. Inman, who is an author himself, in addition to owning a company that produces author videos, says he sees "a real urgency in publishing to innovate with new kinds of content."

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Inman is not alone. The Times goes on to detail several other companies working on similar innovations.

The article closes with a quote from Inman on the future of the book. “I don’t think we are compromising the written word," he told the Times. "People will to continue to read, just in new ways. Books are finally coming online but they are very one-dimensional. I think we can experiment and do this better.”

"Do books better?" How you react to this probably depends on who you are. Innovators may be delighted. But a lot of the rest of us may be feeling something closer to what Emily Dickinson described (upon seeing a snake) as a sensation of "Zero at the Bone."

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