Paper, pixels, and the news

This is definitely cool, but I can’t decide if it’s simply cool in a retro backwards-looking kind of way. PressDisplay lets you read 225 newspapers from 55 countries as though you had the actual paper spread in front of you. They’ve got a nifty interface that lets you flip through paper, almost to the point of including the virtual coffee stain circles from your coffee cup. I’m betting that most of the 225 newpapers included here already have web sites, which means that PressDisplay is not only competing with these web sites; it’s also saying that the old newspaper format that evolved across a hundred years of smearing ink on big pieces of paper is still the best, even when viewed on a small pixelated screen (albeit with the help of some magic cyber-shoehorns). Fascinating, but ultimately you have to conclude it’s for print junkies and not people who simply need the news. It’s as if Google Maps included crease lines and made it hard to fold up your map and put it away. PressDisplay is betting on the wrong horse. Call me back if they’re still here in two years.

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