The Harvard Book Store‘s new owner, former tech executive Jeff Mayersohn, is using digital content to enhance the bookstore as well as offering a speedy and inexpensive delivery service to local people. A recent article in Forbes explains:
Essentially, Jeff installed a printing press to close the inventory gap with Amazon. The Espresso Book Machine sits in the middle of Harvard Book Store like a hi-tech visitor to an earlier era. A compact digital press, it can print nearly five million titles including Google Books that are in the public domain, as well as out of print titles. We’re talking beautiful, perfect bound paperbacks indistinguishable from books produced by major publishing houses. The Espresso Book Machine can be also used for custom publishing, a growing source of revenue, and customers can order books in the store and on-line.
This books on demand service gives customers access to previously inaccessible titles, books that are no longer under copyright, out-of-print, or hard to find titles, which can be requested and printed within minutes. Additionally, if you live locally, you can order online and get any book delivered the same or next day by an environmentally friendly Metroped. The below video from Google explains more about the Espresso Book Machine: