In a discussion with my mentor today we talked about (among other things) book publishing. So here's a way that the Internet has changed the world that probably no one would have predicted: Apparently one of things book publishers (and these are academic book publishers, but I'm sure the same could be said about publishers in general) think about now as they plan a book is the effectiveness of the cover design. By which they mean, "How will this cover look shrunk down to Amazon.com's 1 inch by 2 inch picture space?" (Or however big it is). Will a tiny picture of this book cover attract attention or not?
Somehow that's really intriguing to me. Technology, academia, consumer culture--it's all tied together in ways I don't think we ever really know. And because all three areas are changing so fast, it's hard to predict how those interactions will evolve. I'm not doing a good job explaining, but I find the idea interesting.