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[personal profile] prince_eric
So, it looks like we'll be doing a yard sale in the next couple of months.

As I've been going through stuff, I've come across my old (1980s-era) encyclopedia set in the attic, and am torn about wether to put it out or not.

On the one hand, it's a good 20 or so years old, and most of my reference-searching needs start with Wikipedia and Google these days (and if necessary, there's also various and sundry libraries around). At this point, the sell-by date on my set is almost certainly reached.

On the other hand, I can remember finding my parents' encyclopedia set when I was fairly young, and spending quite a lot of time immersed in it, where I first really started to read up on Greek and Norse mythologies, and read up on various historical events and people. Now that I've got a couple of kids, I wonder if in a few years I drag it down they'll find it the way I found the set my parents had, and will start grabbing volumes and reading through them the way I did.

Personally, I'm leaning towards putting it out at the yard sale, as I've enough other books that are on the shelves, and between them and the Internet I should be all set, but I keep having this nagging feeling that I should hang on to it.

Date: 2009-08-20 04:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] montoya.livejournal.com
My rule in re getting rid of books is never to get rid of any book that I might conceivably even think about missing at any point in the future. So if you're conflicted, the answer is keep it.

Date: 2009-08-20 05:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] prince-corwin.livejournal.com
I used to do something similar with encyclopedias at school, since we never had one at home. (Well, I had a big one volume one, but I realized it was crap even at the time.)

On the other hand, I dreamed about some day having a system that is sort of similar to wikipedia, now-- my dreams had no notion of crowd-sourcing or any of that, and were of something more polished, professional and in-depth, but still, the basic thoughts were there. They included something akin to hyperlinks, in the "click for more details" sense.

I know that if I were twelve years old at the time your kids are going to be twelve years old, I'd point at our old paper encyclopedias and laugh, then go back to surfing the web.

Date: 2009-08-20 05:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mcroft.livejournal.com
I'm with Novak on this one. It's of interest if you want to know what Encylopedia Steevesanica said about East Germany during the Cold War rather than what we say about it now. Otherwise, it's crap.

Get a subscription to the Britannica Online edition and view the online and use the out-of-copyright 1907 edition for historical articles.

Date: 2009-08-20 05:17 pm (UTC)
ext_12920: (Default)
From: [identity profile] desdenova.livejournal.com
Well, I'd be tempted to keep them for sentimental value, but I have a sneaking suspicion that Kids These Days would look at a dead-tree encyclopedia with the same degree of curiosity and interest that I regarded my parents' 8-track player. That is, as something strange from the days of yore, and sure you *can* play music on it, and it's fun to try as a novelty, but not something I'd want to use regularly.

Date: 2009-08-20 05:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] montoya.livejournal.com
Although plagiarism from old editions of print encyclopedias is less detectable than copy 'n' paste from Wikipedia, so there's that.

Date: 2009-08-20 07:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zenbaker.livejournal.com
Keep em! You cant get rid of old books, its the law :)

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