Publishing Innovation Or Inanity? A Book With Disappearing Ink

EL DIA, INFORME 21 (Argentina)


BUENOS AIRES - We know that the news never waits, neither do trains nor time itself. But a good ol" fashioned book…well, we used to think that it could just sit up there forever on the bookshelf, gazing down, waiting until whenever to crack it open and devour what's inside.

But not so fast – or slow. The Argentinean publishing house Eterna Cadencia is challenging that treasured relationship, as a way to emphasize the urgency of new literature – and physical books themselves, in the face of the e-books of the digital revolution.

The publisher has launched "The Book That Can't Wait" (ironically, the name of the publisher of the ephemeral book contains the word "eternal"). As the Argentine El Dia newspaper reports, "El Libro que No Puede Esperar" is printed with disappearing ink that simply fades away in two months time. The books are sealed in a plastic wrapper, which once removed, sees the ink beginning to fade. Sixty days later, the reader remains with nothing but the covers and a bound bunch of blank pages.

Hey, why didn't Jeff Bezos think of that??

The Buenos Aires-based publishing house said that the aim of this project is to promote young authors, who have trouble selling their books. The Argentinean website Informe21 describes the project in a more dramatic way: "In order to force us to read, they created books with disappearing ink."

In just the first few months, the small publisher says it sold its entire batch of the intriguing books. This may be the ultimate proof that there is still life in the printed word, or perhaps a bizarre final gasp before Amazon and friends make it so literature is as eternal as it is unbounded.

Here's another recent twist on the tenuous state of the printed book. Courtesy of some wise guys from Spain:

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In Argentina, A Visit To World's Highest Solar Energy Park

With loans and solar panels from China, the massive solar park has been opened a year and is already powering the surrounding areas. Now the Chinese supplier is pushing for an expansion.

960,000 solar panels have been installed at the Cauchari park

Silvia Naishtat

CAUCHARI — Driving across the border with Chile into the northwest Argentine department of Susques, you may spot what looks like a black mass in the distance. Arriving at a 4,000-meter altitude in the municipality of Cauchari, what comes into view instead is an assembly of 960,000 solar panels. It is the world's highest photovoltaic (PV) park, which is also the second biggest solar energy facility in Latin America, after Mexico's Aguascalientes plant.

Spread over 800 hectares in an arid landscape, the Cauchari park has been operating for a year, and has so far turned sunshine into 315 megawatts of electricity, enough to power the local provincial capital of Jujuy through the national grid.

It has also generated some $50 million for the province, which Governor Gerardo Morales has allocated to building 239 schools.

Abundant sunshine, low temperatures

The physicist Martín Albornoz says Cauchari, which means "link to the sun," is exposed to the best solar radiation anywhere. The area has 260 days of sunshine, with no smog and relatively low temperatures, which helps keep the panels in optimal conditions.

Its construction began with a loan of more than $331 million from China's Eximbank, which allowed the purchase of panels made in Shanghai. They arrived in Buenos Aires in 2,500 containers and were later trucked a considerable distance to the site in Cauchari . This was a titanic project that required 1,200 builders and 10-ton cranes, but will save some 780,000 tons of CO2 emissions a year.

It is now run by 60 technicians. Its panels, with a 25-year guarantee, follow the sun's path and are cleaned twice a year. The plant is expected to have a service life of 40 years. Its choice of location was based on power lines traced in the 1990s to export power to Chile, now fed by the park.

Chinese engineers working in an office at the Cauchari park


Chinese want to expand

The plant belongs to the public-sector firm Jemse (Jujuy Energía y Minería), created in 2011 by the province's then governor Eduardo Fellner. Jemse's president, Felipe Albornoz, says that once Chinese credits are repaid in 20 years, Cauchari will earn the province $600 million.

The Argentine Energy ministry must now decide on the park's proposed expansion. The Chinese would pay in $200 million, which will help install 400,000 additional panels and generate enough power for the entire province of Jujuy.

The park's CEO, Guillermo Hoerth, observes that state policies are key to turning Jujuy into a green province. "We must change the production model. The world is rapidly cutting fossil fuel emissions. This is a great opportunity," Hoerth says.

The province's energy chief, Mario Pizarro, says in turn that Susques and three other provincial districts are already self-sufficient with clean energy, and three other districts would soon follow.

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