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10 March, 2004

Google is the first option, not encyclopedia

SiliconValley.com has an interesting report on the encyclopaedias today. (I am not sure if there's an a before e in encyclopaedia, can't spell.)

But with children now often knowing their way around a computer before they know how to read, it's almost like forcing students to use slide rules when they know calculators can do the job faster.

That's something interesting. As for myself, I played Dad's digital handhold scientific calculator before I entered primary school. A scientific is nothing special nowadays, but back then, it was very expensive (as Dad told me). Well, I did not care about that, it was my toy! Then, when I was in high school, I asked my dad if he had a calculating ruler (sliding rulers). Out of my surprise, he brought back one from his office the following day. It's was too hard to use, and the worst parts of it -- slow and not accurate.
Okay, back to topic. No, I don't have any encyclopaedia, not even digital version (as in CD-ROM or DVD-ROM). I've always been thinking about getting a copy of encyclopaedia, but I don't like Microsoft, not going to pay for Encarta. Jessica Reid of Advanced Electrolysis Centre told me a such software called GuruNet. GuruNet is an online reference tool, I don't usually recommend commercial products, but I recommend it. When I first watching Jessica using it, I didn't like it, because I thought I could get all the information I want for free from other means, without going through GuruNet. That's true, there's Google.com, there are free online dictionary and encyclopaedia... but then I'll need to go to all sorts of different websites. With GuruNet, I can get the topics I want from a number of difference online sources which I can't get access for free. So, after Jessica bought it, I bought a license for it as well. Life can't be better, I now have the world's best online encyclopaedia in my computer.
The only problem with it... no Mac version yet.
BTW, if you want to purchase GuruNet, ask me for the promotion code which can save you US$5.

As research moves online, pity the poor encyclopedia:

But with children now often knowing their way around a computer before they know how to read, it's almost like forcing students to use slide rules when they know calculators can do the job faster.
[...]
Indeed, the heyday of the printed encyclopedia -- which presidential hopeful Sen. John Kerry spent his first job going door-to-door trying to sell -- is long gone.
The thick volumes were long the status symbol of upper-class educated households, and sales surged in the 1980s when installment plans made $1,400 reference sets affordable for poorer families.
But the 1990s brought recession, saddling encyclopedia makers with defaulted loans. At the same time, computers were penetrating libraries and homes. Families with school-aged children weren't thinking about whether to spring for an encyclopedia set, but rather for a computer.
Then the World Wide Web exploded, making reference works on CD-ROMs seem antiquated.

> read the full article: As research moves online, pity the poor encyclopedia (May Wong, 8 March 2004, SiliconValley.com)

Posted by Antony on 10 March 2004 1:14 AM |

more March 2004 blogs. (or 2004 blogs)
from iTunes Store:
comments
I would like to get a coupon for gurunet if you have one still. Thanks
Posted by Greg on 9 May 2004 9:41 AM.
I would also like the gurunet promotion code, if you have it. Thanks.
Posted by mrnathan on 13 June 2004 8:39 AM.
Please send me a GuruNet promotion code if you still have them. Thanks!
Stephen
Posted by Stephen on 13 July 2004 6:55 AM.
Gurunet is great...and you can save me 5$? Sounds great! Formally request promotion code if available. -thx
Posted by joe on 16 July 2004 7:28 AM.
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