fun with science cover

Science Fun!

Fun With Science
Easy Experiments for Young People
Freeman and Freeman
1956

This little gem from the 1950s is CLEARLY past its “sell by” date. The cover was in bad shape and there was some yellowing. This came from a university collection, not a public library. (There was one public library that had this book listed in its collection.) The Freemans wrote many youth science nonfiction books up into the 1970s.

This book was first published in 1943 and was last printed in 2000. The Freemans passed away in the 1980s. I couldn’t find much biographical information about the Freemans with my cursory searches. Given the longevity of their books, as well has the number of titles, their materials should be archived and maintained for study.

internet and computer fads

Old school librarians vs the Internet

Internet and Personal Computing Fads
Bell, Berry, and Van Roekel
2004

This was actually a fun book, from a historical perspective. At the time, this would have been an excellent addition to a public library collection. It’s an accessible book geared to those just stepping into the Internet. Is it relevant for today’s library users? Not really. If they ever do an updated version though, I will buy it for my library.

I remember recently talking to a young professional about the integration of technology in libraries. Most folks were okay with the OPAC since they had been around a long time. The Internet, databases, email, and basic technology support were well beyond some of the old school library types. There was a lot of resistance and discounting of computer based research.

Computers in Society cover

The Computer Revolution

Computers in Society
7th Ed.
Schellenberg
1998

Submitter: Just when you think you have cleared out every out-of-date tech book in your collection, one shows up to flaunt its uselessness. Computer book from the last century? Off to the recycle bin.

Holly: I hate it when that happens! I’m sure half the URLs listed in the second image below don’t exist anymore (although I didn’t test them). I also like how the introduction talks about the “computer or information revolution” when we’re a few revolutions beyond that.

biology made simple cover

Biology Review

Biology Made Simple
Revised Edition
Hanauer
1972 (original copyright 1956)

This came to me with a couple of notations (blacked out to avoid identifying information): 2 separate notices from libraries about the damage in the book. None of the notices were recent. The damage noted a cracked binding and some torn pages. I would also like to add the yellowing pages and some mystery stains as well.

DOS for dummies cover

Get your DOS on!

DOS for Dummies (3rd Edition)
Gookin
1998

For those of you of a certain age, DOS knowledge was essential if you wanted to use those fancy programs like LOTUS 123, Wordstar, and other early office software. Back then everything was command line, and knowledge of DOS around my office made you one of the top geeks. Even though Windows was around in the very early days of personal computers, I don’t think it was a norm in offices until the early to mid 1990s. I remember when I started back to work after having kids, and all of sudden everything was Windows. It took me quite a while to adjust given my previous experience.

science calculator cover

Calculator Help for Complex Math

Scientific Analysis on the Pocket Calculator
Smith
1975

We have had other calculator books from the old days. Most of them, like this one and this one seemed to be pitching the same joke of spelling some clever words aimed at the junior high school mentality. This particular example is aimed at the science/engineering crowd. From what I can tell, it is actually pretty detailed. It is aimed at those who were of the pencil and paper/slide rule crowd that did higher level mathematics. I consulted with my  mathematician son and engineer husband on this book. Husband said he hadn’t thought “about this crap since grad school.”  Mathematician son commented that it was kind of interesting how they broke down how to work some seriously juicy problems using the calculator.

Story of Weather cover

How’s the weather up there?

The Story of Weather
Giles
1990

Submitter: It is mostly a moderately interesting book going through various weather phenomena, different climates and biomes, and some notable events in weather history. The fact that it is 30 years old is reason enough to weed it, but the real fun is in the final chapter: “Future Climate.”

Here, the book tries to spin climate change as a good thing, speculating that the British “perpetual moaning about weather may become a thing of the past” as the weather slowly “becomes similar to … the south-west of France.”