Via Gary Price at TeleRead [http://www.teleread.com/paul-biba/reading-a-book-vs-on-a-screen-study-shows-no-difference/]:
Reading a Book Versus a Screen: Different Reading Devices, Different Modes of Reading?
ScienceDaily (Oct. 20, 2011)
“The study analyzed the differences in reading from various kinds of media (e-book, tablet PC, paper) in two sample groups, young and elderly adults. Each participant read various texts with different levels of complexity on an e-book reader (Kindle 3), on a tablet PC (iPad), and on paper. The reading behavior and the participants’ corresponding neural processes were assessed by means of concurrent measures of eye movements (eye tracking) and electrophysiological brain activity (EEG). The criteria that were taken into account and analyzed were changes in the theta frequency band power, reading behavior, text comprehension, and information recall as well as the participants’ preferences for the respective medium.”
And the results were that there were not really any major differences.
“participants’ subjective perceptions did not match the results of a comparison of e-ink readers and printed paper texts.”
“the subjective preference for the printed book is not an indicator of how fast and how well the information is processed”
“There is no (reading) culture clash – whether it is analog or digital, reading remains the most important cultural technology.”
“While there were no differences between the three media employed in terms of rates of reading by the younger participants, the older participants exhibited faster reading times when using the tablet PC.”
Anecdotally I also hear marked preferences for print versus e-paper readers versus tablets. I have noticed that those who vociferously prefer print, almost to a person, don’t read an e-books and never have. It’s still a personal choice.