So the first of my reflections on completing my digital scholarship book can probably be filed under 'No shit, Sherlock':
The book is a good format for some ideas
I have suggested that books and articles have had a monopoly as the format for the dissemination of ideas, and new media liberate us from this somewhat. In my case the book has grown out of stuff I've been blogging over the past 4 years or so, but it isn't just a load of blog posts bundled together (whatever you may think). The length and format of a book is a very good means of both exploring ideas in depth and pulling together various strands that have been rather fragmented. Who knew eh? One of the points I make (repeatedly, ad nauseum) is that we now have alternatives, where there were previously limited options. It is not the case that the book will disappear, or is dead, but that we have alternatives now to expressing and sharing ideas. Is an article, a blog post, a video, a slidecast, a podcast or conference presentation the best? Sometimes the book really is the best format.
Perhaps more interesting is not which one of these you choose, but the combination of them. What is the boundary of the book? Is it the physical object? What about the shared comments and highlights on Kindle? Then there will be related media, blogs, twitter conversations. The decision is less about which sole method you select but rather which one you place at the center of this distributed knowledge bundle.