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Microsoft Encarta died - why? And will its contents be lost?

Apr 17, 2009, 14:02 (4 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Tony Mobily)

[ Thanks to steve hill for this link. ]

"My job is to gather and publish good contents. I know how much work goes into creating and publishing material. This news must have been quite hard to digest for people who have been working on Encarta for a while. The two main questions that come to mind, however, are: "Why?", and more importantly, "What about the contents?"

"When it came out, Encarta was both courageous and innovative. Microsoft had some serious cash back then, and was trying to find new ways of exploiting technologies in "cool" ways. It was actually a decent encyclopaedia which competed with the more established (and very expensive) ones.

"Then, years passed and the world changed quite drastically. The Internet became reality, and Wikipedia was created. Some can say that Wikipedia killed Encarta. To me, it's more like "free licensing and the internet community killed Encarta". Compare Encarta's 62,000 entries with Wikipedia's 2,700,000 articles. And it's not just about numbers, but quality: having used both of them, I feel I can say that Wikipedia is simply better. Much better. And more current. The reason is simple: Encarta wasn't better than Wikipedia because it couldn't afford to be."

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