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Ultimate Visual Dictionary of Science Hardcover – August 31, 1998

4.8 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Here's a science dictionary worth poring over for hours. The concise, well-written text and amazing photos and drawings in The Ultimate Visual Dictionary of Science provide an overview of science, from physics to biology, astronomy to mathematics--nine major fields in all. Within the larger sections, each fairly broad subtopic (such as "Reptiles," "Catalysts," and "Medical Imaging") gets a two-page spread. A brief beginning section introduces science as a concept and the work of scientists, while a useful section in the back bolsters the dictionary material with tables of measurements and data. The real strength of a visual dictionary is its images, and this one doesn't disappoint. The illustrations, including intricate cross sections, explanatory diagrams, and fascinating photos, are topnotch. This edition is up-to-date, with information on computer networks and mammalian cloning--a great family science reference. --Therese Littleton

From School Library Journal

Grade 6 Up-Like DK's Ultimate Visual Dictionary (1998), much of this title is a compilation of several previously published volumes. The Visual Dictionary of Physics (1995), The Visual Dictionary of Chemistry (1996), and The Visual Dictionary of Human Anatomy (1996, all DK) have been virtually reprinted page by page, illustration by illustration, and shrunk to fit a smaller format. Nowhere in the book is this fact mentioned. Other sections include medical science, life sciences and ecology, earth sciences, astronomy and astrophysics, electronics and computer science, and mathematics. Here, the information has been synthesized from earlier books and updated. The life-sciences section includes some nifty diagrams of arthropods, sponges, and plants. In the electronics section, there are diagrams of transformers, conductors and semiconductors, etc. "Mathematics" includes brief cogent descriptions of coordinates and triangles, probability, logic, and other functions, with lots of clear, understandable diagrams. As none of the information is laid out in dictionary format, it is often necessary to consult the index. Useful data such as physics formulas are at the end of the book along with a glossary, an index, and a short biographical list of scientists. If you don't already have the topical visual dictionaries in your collection, this is a relatively inexpensive way to get all three plus other useful information.
Jo-Anne Weinberg, Greenburgh Public Library, NY
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 11 and up
  • Series: Ultimate Visual Dictionary
  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: DK; 1 edition (August 31, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0789435128
  • ISBN-13: 978-0789435125
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 1.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #678,317 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on November 7, 1998
The "Ultimate Visual Dictionary of Science" may well be just that. For this exquisite reference brims with 1,600 color photos, 200 illustrations, and 15,000 completely accessible terms. This mammoth work covers everything from Physics and Chemistry to Ecology and Computer Science, and it "allows you to browse the thematic sections at your leisure or to use it as a quick-reference visual dictionary." Everyone will have a favorite section. I particularly enjoyed the Earth Sciences, with its stunningly-clear iilustrations of coastlines and the ocean floor. And in the Astronomy and Astrophysics chapter, you'll find remarkable slice-away graphics that show, say, the planet Jupiter, with its hydrogen and helium atmosphere covering not a rocky surface, but a mantle of liquid hydrogen and helium! The book's layout is superb. Indeed, every page dazzles with a wealth of color and information. This is a must-purchase.
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If you have read my other reviews you know I don't give out five stars very readily. This is a five-star book.
There are about 170 two-page, profusely illustrated spreads that give you the basic background on practically every topic in modern science.
Read one of these two-page spreads every other day. It will take you ten minutes or so. In less than a year you will be dramatically better informed about science. There isn't a more pleasant way to get so much smarter, so quickly.
This is a book every home should have.
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This is the most thoroughly prepared visual dictionary out there. It is not alphabetically organized, but according to epistemological categories. We move from the building blocks of existence (physics, chemistry) into the development of life (biology), delve into the biology of humans (medicine). Then we look back at where we stand, the earth (geology), and move towards the universe (astronomy). Our journey ends with math (and computation), the cognitive methods with which we make sense of all this knowledge. This is not your regular coffee table book with color pictures thrown on the pages, so the publisher can make a quick buck. This is a compendium of knowledge, for which a staggering number of high-quality informational artwork was produced, accompanied with meticulously photographed museum-quality instructional models. All double-page spreads are edited with care so they can hold a single subject in stand-alone fashion. This book is produced with a level of dedication hardly encountered in contemporary publishing. Beautifully bound in actual signatures, all of the 400+ color pages open flat. Pretty affordable for all that it offers. Every household in America should have one on their shelves. Let's learn and make this a better world! Kudos to the busy-bees at DK.
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In a caption titled Seasonal Change, " ...as the Earth orbits the sun, different zones of the Earth lean in turn gradually nearer to the Sun and then farther away, creating four distinct phases, or seasons." This seems to say that the Earth-Sun distance causes the seasons, when it's the change in the angle of incidence of insolation on the Earth's surface that does it, not in any sense the distance. This tends to encourage the intuition over the facts. Just a bit sloppy, in my opinion.
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I bought this for my nephew, and was so interested by it I spent half the night reading it!
My wife finaly started looking through it and liked it so much she wanted it for Christmas for herself!
It covers anatomy, biology, chemstry, earth science, physics, astronomy, computers & electronics - and much more - everything!!
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I purchased this book for my 4 year old son who keeps asking lots of questions. While the book may be a bit advanced and he is just learning to read, he enjoys my explaining the various topics within. This books is not for kids only and is an excellent reference to have in the home as adults can gain as much from this excellent reference. Also a great book and companion volume is the Ultimate Visual Dictionary. DK books really puts out great books and this one is tops on my list.
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