When most people get a vending machine for their office, they usually want one that sells drinks or snacks. Not The Monkey's Paw. This used bookstore has a machine that sells books. Unlike the previous book vending machine we blogged about before, this one is a little more mysterious.
The Biblio-Mat, as the machine is named, vends randomly selected old books. Stephen Fowler, owner of The Monkey's Paw, came up with the idea to get the attention of people who might otherwise ignore the discount book bins in the store. But it was Craig Small, a designer and animator, who brought it to life.
The machine is housed in an old storage locker and the books are loaded into columns, which then rise when money is inserted. The top book, resting at a 45 degree angle, then dispenses for the customer to retrieve. A laser tripwire keeps the column from rising further to prevent more books being dispensed. Much like a traditional vending machine, the Biblio-Mat features a computer processor to detect the size of the coins inserted.
Since its debut, this unique vending machine has garnered much attention from many people, including Neil Gaiman and Margaret Atwood.