One Day At The Frankfurt Book Fair

It is actually the second time that PediaPress is present at the Frankfurt Book Fair, we were there last year, and it's nice to be back.

As always, the Frankfurt Book Fair, the biggest of its kind in Europe, is impressive. Really. The sheer magnitude of it is something you have to see once in your life. Around 7000 exhibitors from 100 countries [1], scattered around 10 or so exhibition halls, it is huge. From Comics to Art books, through Education, and Gutenberg knows what other topics, the Frankfurt book fair is an event that gathers thousands people from around the world around one passion, books. Books in every form and shape, ebooks, paper books, panorama books, strange books, great books and of course, Wikipedia Books.

It is always interesting to see what attracts people to our booth. Some know about us and just come and visit, wanting to find out more about what we do. Others are drawn by the word wiki in our tagline "wikis in print" and make the direct connection with Wikipedia. Some again are just excited by amazing variety of titles on display (from New York City to Weimarer Republik and somewhere in the middle Body Modifications or The Solar System).

It is in any case always great to observe how people react to books made from Wikipedia articles. You have the cautious, who wonder if those books "can be quoted, because, after all, they're from Wikipedia, and Wikipedia is not an authoritative source". They represent the old line of caution between online and offline distribution, nothing new there, and some truth in it too. Others who just find this "so cool! I can really make any book I want, with all the articles I find interesting?" "Yes you can." They are the enthusiasts, discoverers and early adopters. Those then who think Wikipedia books should be in every single school on the planet. I like to call them idealists, with a bit of utopia on the side. Those finally who come up with cool ideas of new books to put together. They are the creative and fun. In short, from the cautious to the eager and fans, we get to see a lot of different and interesting people. Not enough Wikipedians though, we hope to see more in the days to come!

On the stand we can show you our new cover designer, which we'll make public in a few weeks and which will allow you to customize your book cover, and we do fun demonstrations of how the new version of the booktool works. We also have coupons to distribute, so you can get a discount on your next book. We're in Hall 4.2, stand G413. Come by and visit!

[1] Der Tagespiegel 13/10/2009

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