We just saw a vending machine for 3D printing, and now, at The Monkey's Paw book store in Toronto, designer Craig Small built the Bibliomat. Besides being the coolest thing I've seen today, the Bibliomat is a $2 vending machine that spits out used books.
The Bibliomat is a dramatic affair. As you can hear in the video below, it huffs and puffs until a bell rings and the book is dispensed at the bottom. It's not much more than a few ropes, pulleys and bells, but it has attracted some whistles. After all the fanfare, you get a book, but not just any book — literature is dispensed randomly, so you never know what you'll get.
It's a clever substitute for a bargain bin, a bookstore trope that is as ignored as it is common. This mix of nostalgia, art, and ingenuity probably moves a lot more books than a classic basket.