From Popular Mechanics from 1910
comes this advertisement for Nelson's Perpetual Loose-Leaf Encyclopaedia.
Reviewed by the New York Times in 1908, the set was supposed to be
"A book that never grows old, that is, never antiquated, that will give answer years after its publication to the most modern of queries -- such a book, one imagines, may be found in the great classic of poetry whose verse, metaphorically speaking, breathes the spirit of perpetual youth." Nelson's claimed it had a permanent editorial staff who were "constantly on watch for all important new facts for the benefit of Nelson's subscribers"
It was advertised heavily in many types of publications (1
Loose leaf was big business in the early part of the 20th Century. Companies were offering "a loose-leaf system for every purpose
." One loose-leaf company began in New York City in 1908
and still makes at-a-glance calendars to this day. Other loose-leaf titles flourished such as Nelson new loose-leaf medicine
, Winston's cumulative loose-leaf encyclopedia (read online
) and Oxford loose-leaf surgery (read online
Nelson's was still going strong in 1930
where a set cost $99.50 plus $6/year for updates
-- buy a set, get a free bookcase -- Nelson's stopped publishing updates sometime in the 1930s. Thomas Nelson & Sons is still around today, the world's largest Christian publisher, but their company history curiously makes no mention
of their innovative encyclopaedia.
See also: "A Solution to the Problem of Updating Encyclopedias
" by Eric M. Hammer and Edward N. Zalta, 1997.
Boing Boing is proud to welcome Robert Jackson Bennett’s The City of Blades as a sponsor! In a world where politics have run amuck and consumers must choose from over 300 varieties of toothpaste, one seemingly simple question rises to the fore: what is my next great read? Luckily for you, ladies and gentlemen, we […]
the Birds in the Sky is everything you could ask for in a debut
novel — a fresh look at science fiction’s most cherished memes,
ruthlessly shredded and lovingly reassembled.
Reddit has published a hardcover compendium of the editor’s favorite AMAs from r/IAmA. The 400 page tome, Ask Me Anything, includes AMAs with Louis C.K., Chris Rock, Martha Stewart, the Waffle House Grill Masters, Spike Lee, Bill Gates, Bette Midler, and many more. The book contains original portraits by u/youngluck and introductions from the r/IAmA […]
Remember back to the time when people thought java was just a hip way to talk about coffee? Or you vaguely remembered from geography class that it’s an island in the South Pacific? We’ve come a long way since then and now that we’ve rocket blasted into the tech future, you’re going to need to […]
Plastic is so 2013. You don’t want to buy something only to throw it away or lose it and barely care. You like nice things and want to hang onto them. The Plazmatic lighter here is a high quality, high tech alternative to the typical cheap, plastic lighter you get at the old gas station. […]
Real engineers build things. Super cool engineers build things with their hands and fingers, like our engineering forefathers did. No idea where to even begin to do that? This step by step Arduino course is now 92% off and is going to get you up and running, from zero to hero, in no time. So […]