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Lasers Work Like This

Lasers cover

 

Lasers Work Like This
Larsen
1969

 

Lasers! What a great topic for a children’s non-fiction book! This was pretty cutting edge stuff in 1969 when the book was published. Some of the topics are still relevant, such as lasers used in surgery, but the technology has been finessed a lot since 1969. The cover was one of those plain, rebound types with no title on it, so what you see here is the title page. The whole thing is presented in such a boring way, and the information shared is so old-fashioned, that kids will surely be disappointed.

Also, they really buried the lead in the postscript on death rays. They should have led with that to spark a kid’s interest.

Lame! Weed and replace.

-Holly

 

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Complete Idiot’s Guide to Online Genealogy

Complete Idiot’s Guide to Online Genealogy
McClure
2000

Submitter: We’re in the midst of a big shifting project, and as I was making my way through the 920s, I came across this gem – Complete Idiot’s Guide to Online Genealogy – year 2000! At some point fairly recently it had been REBOUND, so I don’t have a nice cover to show you. As the librarian in charge of the computer books in the 004s, I was appalled and immediately withdrew it, but we still have a copy in our Genealogy Reference section. Sure, there are some still relevant tips for online genealogy sources, but the information is so out-of-date, this can’t be very useful. Check out the pages that talk about how dial-up works and the handy search engines Alta Vista and Hotbot. Since our Genealogy section will also have to be downsized, I’m hoping to talk them into getting rid of their copy, too.

Holly: Hotbot! I remember that one. Just because a book has *some* useful information in it does not make it a keeper. You have to consider the book as a whole, and this one is too old to be useful. Some patrons would follow a book like this step-by-step, and then call the reference desk, frustrated, saying “the book said to go to Hotbot, but my computer doesn’t have The Hotbot! Should I install it? Can I get it on The Facebook?” I like the Complete Idiot’s Guides, but they’re not helpful to newbies on any subject if they’re this outdated.

 

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The Romance of Nickel

The Romance of Nickel coverThe Romance of Nickel
International Nickel Company of Canada
1957

Submitter: My submission is a short paean to nickel, called The Romance of Nickel. The cover does little to convince me, however, as it shows the desolate wasteland created by nickel mining. This slim volume (a mere 80 pages) was created by The International Nickel Company (motto: “Inco Nickel… Your Unseen Friend”) to sell its product, and the spin is a little much. Judging by the cover illustration, the environmental damage of nickel mining is extreme; no romance there!

Holly: That cover! It’s all bent up with peeled-off stickers, and I agree with Submitter that the image is less than romantic. It would work for the cover of a dystopian romance novel. This is too old to be useful to anyone. It was found in a community college in Colorado. Mining is of interest in Colorado, for sure, but I’m not sure a community college is the place for this little booklet from 1957.

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