A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life

A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life
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I do not seek to understand that I may believe, but I believe in order to understand. For this also I believe, –that unless I believed, I should not understand.-- St. Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The Inevitable End of an Era

From USA Today:
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Encyclopaedia Britannica turns a page, ends print edition

By Judy Keen

After 244 years and more than 7 million printed sets, the company is announcing today that it will no longer publish a print edition. The last, 32-volume print version, published in 2010, weighs 129 pounds and sells for $1,395.

Only 12,000 sets of the final edition were printed, company President Jorge Cauz says, and 4,000 remain in its inventory.

In an increasingly digital world where the online Encyclopaedia Britannica — which is much larger than the printed version — is updated every 20 minutes, Cauz says, publishing on paper no longer makes sense.
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You can read the entire article here.

4 comments:

Danny G said...

My H.S. librarian is probably turning over in her grave over this news. I remember the lessons of how to properly use dictionaries and encyclopedias and how they were the starting place for any decent research paper. Still, there is something about having a book in one's hands. Though I use GOOGLE BOOKS in my academic work, I still find myself looking through Amazon and Abebooks for original copies of some of the works. I wonder if kids today will look upon their Kindle the same way 30 or 40 years hence?

Daniel McLain Hixon said...

As an ardent fan of Wikipedia, I'm not too surprised by this, but I am a bit saddened. All of our digital information is so dependent upon reliable electicity.

Some part of me worries, however, that should our world pass through a cataclysm of some sort and the internet ceases to exist as soon as the lights go out - what will happen to all of our knowledge? At least books have to be physically destroyed in order to lose their potential.

Chuck Tackett said...

Daniel, it wouldn't even require a world-wide power outage. One well placed virus could do tremendous damage to our knowledge base.

Back to the middle ages in a week.

Mike Helbert said...

I work in the printing industry and know its power, and its liabilities/vulnerabilities. That's why I buy print. I spend the money to have ink on paper. At least, I can make candles to read by.