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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's in the Almanac
Do you enjoy facts and trivia with a generous helping of current events and current biographical nuggets? Then this book is for you. Inside you'll find a section on the year in review for 2010 as well as Time's top 100 for 2010 and short biographies of hundreds of notables and obits of the famous who died in 2010.

Since this is an almanac, there are also the...
Published on December 6, 2011 by Spudman

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Chock full of inaccuracies, omissions, and non sequiturs
Almanacs of the World are supposed to provide you with accurate and useful information organized in a logical manner. This one just doesn't do those things. These guys have been phoning it in for years. I doubt there's one full time employee in charge of this thing.

The Time Almanac 2011 edition is 128 pages shorter than the 2008 version - that implies a lot of...
Published on January 9, 2012 by John Paul L. Finan


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Chock full of inaccuracies, omissions, and non sequiturs, January 9, 2012
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This review is from: Time Almanac 2011 (Hardcover)
Almanacs of the World are supposed to provide you with accurate and useful information organized in a logical manner. This one just doesn't do those things. These guys have been phoning it in for years. I doubt there's one full time employee in charge of this thing.

The Time Almanac 2011 edition is 128 pages shorter than the 2008 version - that implies a lot of material has been cut. The price still went up a dollar, though. Worse, errors from the 2008 edition are still in the 2011 copy.

One big problem with the almanac is the plethora of poorly organized information, some of questionable value. Much of the worst offenders are "Did you know" sections. Some are relevant to the topics they are printed beside, but many are totally out of the blue. There's a paragraph explaining the Dutch tulip bubble of the 17th century right after a chart showing ways to burn 150 calories. What dieter cares about tulips? And who reaches for a World Almanac when they want to know how to burn 150 calories, anyway? What's so special about 150?

There are dozens of what look like article stubs with just a paragraph or two of text when you would expect more, like the one for Tsunami. It just says what a tsunami is. There's no accompanying list of major tsunamis, no map of danger zones... nothing. What a joke.

The next issue is the volume of seemingly incomplete tables and missing information. For example, only 2009 winners of the Cannes and Sundance film festivals are listed. Many items only list the most recent 20 years of results, like the UEFA Champions League and Alpine Skiing Champions, for instance. Some of the lists that are included seem arbitrary, like "Britannica's Top 20 Opera Companies" and "Top 20 World Class Orchestras." Who said those are the best? Did Steve tell you that? With no reasoning given, it might as well say "20 Orchestras that Exist."

Want to know how many copies MJ's Thriller sold? Page 671 has a list of best-selling albums of all time, but despite the fact that the heading says sales are given to the nearest million, there are no sales figures to be found. Nor were there in the 2008 edition, though the heading still referred to them. I only glanced at the sports section, but there are errors there, too. The 2004 women's 500-m time trial winning time is given as 53.016 s, but that looked odd since the previous years were all much lower. In reality, the winning time was 33.952 s. What other errors are less obvious?

I was especially disappointed by the sloppiness in the geography and social science information, since that's the kind of thing I use world almanacs for. It's handy to have land area listed for countries (though the stat is incorrectly listed as 'demography'). However, it's not terribly useful when you just want to know the biggest country in Africa. There's no list by size or population or even an alphabetical table with a handful of key facts for each country. Anytime you want to compare life expectancy, capital cities, wheat production, or anything else, you have to check each country's numbers one at a time. The same goes for states, except population. There are virtually no comprehensive tables on any "world" topic.

Country data are organized haphazardly within the profiles, too. Some 'national economy' sections start with "Budget" while others start with Gross National Income and tack Budget on somewhere towards the end of the section. It makes comparison much more time consuming. Budgets are given in local currency, instead of being converted to comprehensible dollars. And why report Gross National Income instead of GDP or GNP, which are used 99.9% of the time everywhere else? When's the last time a non-economist had any use for GNI?

Even basic things like the area of continents is wrong. Of course there may be disagreement about precisely where continental borders lie, but the Time Almanac is waaaaay off base. It lists Asia as 32 million square kilometers, but Rand McNally and the Census and Wiki all say it's 45 million (give or take tiny bit). The extra seems to have been assigned to Europe, which Time thinks is more than double the area anyone else says. The highest mountain in Europe is given as Mount Blanc, but it's actually Mount Elbrus, unless you don't count the Caucasian Mountains, which have been considered to be in Europe since 1850. Besides, if they were counting out that whole region, how'd they come up with the Caspian Sea as the lowest point in Europe (which is correct)? Jaya, the tallest peak in Oceania, is listed as almost 500 feet taller than it is widely accepted to be. The lowest point in South America and in the southern and western hemispheres is Laguna del Carbon, known since at least 2006 when the old record holder (Veldes Peninsula) was updated on Wikipedia. The CIA World Factbook listed the update in 2007. The Time Almanac *still* has it wrong.

Data presentation is sometimes an issue, too, like in the list of cities with the most and least crimes. Obviously New York City has the most homicides... it's more than double the size of the next largest city! Of course Podunk, Idaho has few crimes - it's the smallest city on your list! Come on, guys.

Basically, if you're looking for a trivia aid or handy general reference, look elsewhere. This whole series reflects very poorly on Time and especially Britannica.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's in the Almanac, December 6, 2011
By 
Spudman (Pasadena, MD United States) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Time Almanac 2011 (Paperback)
Do you enjoy facts and trivia with a generous helping of current events and current biographical nuggets? Then this book is for you. Inside you'll find a section on the year in review for 2010 as well as Time's top 100 for 2010 and short biographies of hundreds of notables and obits of the famous who died in 2010.

Since this is an almanac, there are also the usual political, sociological, and geographical statistics as well as sections on nature, science, medicine, technology, business, arts, entertainment, leisure, and of course sports. Time Almanac 2011 is a great reference to add to one's personal library. It'll also be fun to revisit the top 100 personalities picked by Time to see if they got it right.

I have thoroughly enjoyed browsing through this book and absorbing as much information as my Potato Head brain can hold. The pages of colored plates with maps and world flags are an added bonus as are the colored photos, as only Time can do them, of 2010 notables.
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1.0 out of 5 stars people not alphatized by last name, April 14, 2014
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This review is from: Time Almanac 2011 (Paperback)
not helpful for what I use it at all - it is too difficult to find the individual names as I am accustomed to
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Time Almanac 2011
Time Almanac 2011 by Editors of TIME Magazine Powered by Encyclopaedia Britannica (Hardcover - December 14, 2010)
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