After an impressive 244-year run (since 1768!), the oldest continuously published encyclopedia in the English language, Encyclopaedia Britannica, is going out of print. The company will be shifting its focus to their online resources and educational curriculum for schools. Britannica will shut down the presses after the 2010 edition, which contains 32 volumes that weigh 129 pounds, includes new entries for subjects like global warming and the Human Genome project, was written by more than 4,000 contributors (including people like skateboarder Tony Hawk and space scientist Jack J. Lissauer), and comes with a hefty $1,395 price tag. Britannica president Jorge Cauz reassures that the online version is a better tool. “Some people will feel sad about it and nostalgic about it. But … the Web site is continuously updated, it’s much more expansive and it has multimedia,” he told the New York Times. Cherish those school library memories, and proudly display any gold-lettered, embossed books that are hanging around the house. These are the end times.
Written by Alison Nastasi