PROS: - Screens are like paper, your eyes won't strain unless it's too dark. And when you read outside with it, it's pretty good. And now they've got backlighting features. - Takes up very little space compared to books, even a small book. - The price of an eBook is a little less than the hard copy, and it's delivered instantly to you when you purchase it (or as soon as you're connected to the Internet, it'll download to your eReader). - Makes me feel good because it's environmentally good (but this is pretty much debatable), since I won't be printing on more paper. And all that limited space in my college apartment can be used for, like... projects. - (for the Kindle) there is a "loan" option, which means you can loan the book to anyone you want (but there's a limited amount of loans). - Search for a phrase in the book, and go straight there. Bookmark using your eReader, takes notes with it... and just search and go straight to that point (of course, depending on your eReader, note-taking can take a while to type stuff). And there's a dictionary built in. - Automatically saves the place that you've read last when you put the eReader on standby or turn it off. - There are tons of free books, and there are classics you can download that's FREE if you want it for the sake of wanting it. And I know both Barnes & Noble and Amazon has a free computer version of their eReader, which you can use to read the books you download from their website on your computer.
CONS: - Battery, so can't be used forever. - If it's too dark, good luck reading, unless you've back the light features. - They really can wipe your eReader if they want to. (Refer to Balaria above.) - Not sure how long it lasts, but mine's doing just the same after half a year. Just like with other electronics, it will eventually... go away. - The quality of eBooks are lower, especially Indie books (self-published, independently-published authors). - The version of a book you bought can only be downloaded a certain number of times. - No reselling. - Screen can go bad, so you can't read anymore.... - Don't drop it. Even if it's "protected," it's like with every other electronic. And don't spill liquids on it (but even if you do, you can still download your book into another eReader and read it from there... of course, again, only limited amount of downloads).
BOOKS: (I'm sure you guys know all this)
PROS: - You can turn to any page instantly, no download time. - You can drop it as many times as you want. - No need for battery. Pretty much lasts forever. - Yours forever. - Lasts forever... forever.... - You can resell it. - Great for collectors and hoarders (I'm sorry, I'm being sarcastic here... but I hoard, too, as you guys are reader, you should understand that books have a certain smell and you love it, and that's why we like hard copies!). - Water damage? Just let it dry, and it should be fine!
Cons: - Takes up space. - And honestly, what's the point of having all those books unless you're going to reread them? The only books I have are the ones I truly, really love. Otherwise, the other books I have are taking up space, and I dislike them too much to even donate them.... Because when you don't like something, why are you going to share it and make other people suffer the same pain?? - Binding can go bad. Pages can go bad. - Once it's ruined, it's pretty hard to repair (same for eReaders themselves). But I contradict myself (see water damage above).
I actually got most of this from research when I bought my Kindle back in February. For the fun of it, and since I was gonna be on a plane for nine hours, I wanted something to read. (But I could not read on the plane because it was too loud.... shame on me.) Sorry if you guys know all this already. I thought that since no one made I list, I might as well do it.
Long story short, my Kindle has not hurt my eyes unless I read it in poor light.
I forgot to mention another CON of eReaders... the eBook prices can be pricier than the hard copies sometimes, which is so laughable, but I'm not making the prices here. And to clear up on the quality, some Indie books have really, really bad grammar, plot, etc., just things that should not have been published, so try the first few pages before buying a $0.99 eBook. (And some eBooks are a dollar for 20 pages, it's ridiculous!)
Someone gave me a kindle. I though it would strain my eyes because I only need to glance at a computer screen to get a headache, but it doesn't look like a light up screen, it's really similar to normal paper.
My two cents: bought a Kindle because college textbooks are heavy. Took up a tenth of the space in my bag that my textbooks would have, and is really great for joining "free kindle deals" book lists where you get a newsletter telling you what books are free on kindle that day. I've gotten a couple hundred free books that way. That said, I feel a lot more homey curling up with a paperback, so I have lots of both. As for "bad for your eyes," not really. If you get an e-reader that's backlit with lights, that might be a strain. But the kindle for sure is not back lit, and has e-ink. I don't know what the others are made of, honestly.
Guess it's up to you, but I prefer actual books, for the following reasons:
Cover artwork. Somebody was paid to create this artwork, and very often it's beautiful and fits the story perfectly. I'm not saying it's always brilliant, but on a real book you get a chance to appreciate this more. Original Typeface: On most modern ebooks you can select a font out of a small selection. Most readers don't mind this, as they don't really notice the font. But once again, somebody has been paid to think out which font is best and choosing that font. As a font lover myself, I find this important. Actual Ownership: You own a real book, it's yours, no questions asked. But like other people have said, having a book on your ebook reader doesn't guarantee it's yours.