Normally I tackle adult-oriented education and performance improvement on this blog. Not so this time: A friend of mine told me about Ripple Reader. After checking this out, this is a great service for parents, kids, and children's book authors everywhere.
Parent company Ripple provides a wonderful demonstration of their service once you fill out their information form. The gist is essentially that you can record yourself reading a children's book to your child or grandchild, should you be far away. Ripple provides everything for you to purchase a book, record your delivery, and send it to your loved one. You can even turn your recording into a gift you can send along with the book. Wonderful stuff, and this helps parents combine family time with reading and computer skills.
I can see another use for this one though: A budding amateur narration industry. Can we say crowdsourcing, or American Idol for books, perhaps? I can also see Ripple Reader being used for adult books as well, though I think that there is some overlap here with podcasting and vid/vodcasts.