Covering people and topics of contemporary interest, as well as historical figures and subjects, this compact, portable single-volume reference draws on the same scholarship and editorial talent that distinguished its big brother, The Columbia Encyclopedia: Third Edition. With 17,000 entries ranging from short definitions to full-length articles, the book provides the most current information available in all fields of knowledgefrom politics, law, art, and history to sports, literature, geography, science, and medicine.
Find what you need to know about DNA fingerprinting, term limits, virtual reality, family leave, hypertext, fractal geometry, ASCII, debit cards, skin patches, and more. All data is presented in a suitable context and a sophisticated system of more than 50,000 cross-references allows readers to pursue a topic easily and completely. Other features include 210 maps with locator maps for every country in the world; more than 100 tables, charts, and illustrations; 100 b&w photographs; and a pronunciation guide designed for quick access. See why The Wilson Library Bulletin referred to this reference as "the single-volume encyclopedia of choice." 973 pp.