I love to cook. As it happens, this is a good quality for a kitchen designer to have. It allows me to think of the kitchen first and foremost as a functioning work-space. Yes, design is important, but how the kitchen functions is the driving force behind any design I do.
When I designed my kitchen, one functional aspect I neglected to a certain degree was the location of cookbooks and recipes. In my defense, I have an office just off the kitchen with plenty of bookshelves where 90% of our cookbooks sit. The remaining 10%, those which I use at least 2 or 3 times a week, have found a home in the cabinet above the stove. Not optimal, but workable.
But after working in the kitchen for a number of years, I began to think that there had to be a better, or rather a more technical solution to bringing recipes into the kitchen. My wife & I use the internet to search for recipe ideas on a regular basis. Sites like Epicurious, AllRecipes and many many others provide a wealth of ideas for those wonder what the heck is for dinner tonight? Add a laptop, some recipe software (we use EZ Recipe) and a wireless network to the equation and you have access to a world of recipes right in your kitchen.
A new stand-alone option is offered by the Key Ingredient web site. Called The Demy, it does essentially the same things that a laptop equipped with some recipe software would do. What sets it apart from the laptop solution is a) the price (approx $300 US) and b) its ability to synchronize with your recipe database at Key Ingredients. You can share recipes with the online community and pick up a few new ones of your own. Entering your own recipes is done manually, or by sending hard copies of your recipes to their ScanMyRecipes service.