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As I was resetting a woman’s iPad yesterday, I noticed that everyone in the store (to be somewhat expected, given that I work in a computer store) was either looking at a computer or if they waiting for service, they were looking at their phones. I asked myself, what did we do while waiting before we had smartphones? Ah, we read books or magazines…or, some napped. Think about this the next time you have a doctor’s appointment—how many people actually look at the magazines provided? I would wager that less than a quarter do so. Everyone else will have their noses in smartphones or tablets.

It seems to me that books are being supplanted by devices. Outside of a library or a bookstore, it’s rare to see someone reading a book—it’s almost novel (pun intended). But, it’s no laughing matter. Studies—no, I don’t know which ones, Google it—have shown that we do not learn as well nor retain as much when we read from the screen instead of the printed page.

I’ve tried to adapt. I have my Bible on my iPad. I have books on my iPad. It’s just not the same. The texture and smell of books is alluring to me. Plus the printed page is easier on the eyes than a screen (again, studies, again, Google).

Full disclosure: I go to bed with my iPad, something we’re not supposed to do (studies, Google), but how else can I keep up with Facebook, the news and politics?

I sit, surrounded by books,
Yet, it is you, glowing
That beckons my look.

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