53 of 60 people found the following review helpful
Not a value for money,
This review is from: Microsoft Encarta Reference Library 2007 (PC DVD) (DVD-ROM)
If you want to buy this product, please do not buy the UK edition, which has only 42000 articles. Buy the US edition (called Encarta Premium), which costs you the same, but has 64000 articles.
I learned this the hard way. I bought the product in India and after installing and browsing the web found that whatever product I have is the UK edition and has 22000 less articles than the US edition. I understand that editions from different geographies should have subtle differences in their viewpoints. But such a dramatic difference in number of articles? I don't see the logic.
Also, if you are a new encyclopedia user, go for Britannica Reference Suite 2007, which costs a little more, but offers more value for money (much more articles, 3 encyclopedias in one, Encyclopedia Britannica, Students Britannica and Elementary Britannica).
Encarta is the only product I used to love from Microsoft. The last one I purchased was Encarta Reference Library 2002 (US Edition). Hard to believe, but that is much better than Encarta Reference Library 2007. Know what is missing in 2007 editon that was there in 2002?
1. Encarta Africana: The best African American Encyclopedia out there, one of my favourites and reasons for loving Encarta.
2. Archives: New stories from 1917 through 2000 on various topics.
3. More number of articles: For example, there were 6 main entries for United States in 2002 edition. 2007 had only one, sadly.
All the further editions (2003 through 2005) had another great feature called Literary Guides. Microsoft has cleverly come up with a premium product which includes Literary Guides, but has removed this feature from this product.
Also, they don't clearly indicate on the software cover, what edition they are selling, UK, US or Australia etc. As a result, I end up buying a sub-standard product.
They say that the interface is improved now, but I did not see any marked difference.
The only pro about this product is the new Children's Encarta, but that is not as extensive about Britannica Student Encyclopedia (I have 2004 edition)
Despite ridiculously less content, this product takes about 3 GB of hard drive space.
I'm going to uninstall this product and reinstall Encarta 2002. Also, this will be my last purchase from Microsoft.