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Pocket Reference Paperback – August, 1997
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How about the request that anyone who finds an inaccuracy or misprint contact the publisher, with an address for that right next to the "this book is lost, return it to:" page?
Everything from Algebra to Zinc sheeting gauge tables is in this book, which fits in the space from the pad on the base of my thumb to the end of my little finger in length and the width of my hand when closed. Its about as thick as the end joint on my index finger, and it's packed with stuff you'll need at some time or other.
Need to identify a fastener or bolt? Done. Want to know how much dirt is in that pile over there (or conversely, how much of your driveway will be lost to x cubic yards of dirt)? Done. Log tables (remember them)? Done. Want to learn to tie a bowline and a sheepshank? Done. Need the melting point of lead? done. Need to know exactly how many "6 inch wide" boards you'll need for your deck that you sized in real inches? Done.
Time zones? Done. Area codes? Done. Military ranks so you don't look like an arse when you meet a person on active service? Done. Need to know what day your wife's birthday will fall on every year from now 'til next muckspreading? Done.
Take the stuff you used to get in the ends of diaries when we were kids. Add all the stuff you find in the appendices of Big-ass Dictionaries. Add in the actually useful stuff from the old OU Science Data Book. Now pack it all in a pocket-sized book.
This will bring out the inner eight year old in everyone and is about as useful as a Swiss Army Knife welded to a Leatherman Wave.
And it is all organized into sensible sections. If you need something mathy, you'll find it in a "math" section. Need a day/date and you'll be wading into the perpetual calendar. There's sections on carpentry, computers, cars. If you walk into a lamppost while reading, there's a section on first aid, and once properly recovered you'll be able to identify various properties of the post by looking up the metals section.
[EDIT 5/13/16] Good news! There's now a desk-sized version for people who lack pockets, prefer to browse at a desk or are fed up with being laughed at by those who feel that when it comes to reference books, size matters. [/EDIT]
An actual engineer won't find this useful in his day-to-day work.
Okay, let me just start off by saying WOW! I am amazed at all the facts in this book. This came in the mail 3-4 days after I had ordered it in perfect condition, although there was only one thing of bubble wrap so it slid around in the box. After messing around with it for a bit I was quite impressed at the information it contained, from "the density of moist air" to "core drill specs". This is very well indexed making it simple to use, or you can just flip to a random page and find something interesting. A good thing is this little book could actually save someone's life because it has a first aid section on just about everything you might need to know. So far as I can see all the information is correct except for the mistakes that have ben pointed out on other reviews. I also told my mom to ask me a random question to see how well this book could do, she asked me "how many miles is the sun?" (and I assume I know what she meant by that) and it had the answer. It ways 7.1 ounces and is actually 5 3/8" x 3 1/4" x 7/8", but the difference in size doesn't really matter to me. Each page is filled and is very informative. Don't rely on all information in this book being correct as there are mistakes as one should expect, although as much as I know it's correct on almost everything.
Overall this is a great book. I highly recommend this book to whom it may interest.