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Encyclopedia of China update to go online in 2018

By Yang Yang | China Daily | Updated: 2017-05-19 07:34

Yang says authority is the biggest difference between Encyclopedia of China and Wikipedia.

"Encyclopedia of China is not about providing trendy information for common readers, such as how to eat some vegetables or the effect of a medicine. In that case, people can search Baidu Encyclopedia. We provide systematic academic knowledge - history, the present and the future of disciplines and also interdisciplinary development. It is an advanced reference tool," he says.

"We invite the most notable scholars in their fields to lead the work of building the knowledge systems based on their understanding of the disciplines."

The introduction of the scholars will appear at the end of each entry.

"With enough funding, we would also like to invite Nobel winners in natural sciences to write entries about the award-winning work," Yang says.

Entries like Brexit will not be included in the book because it just happened without an established conclusion.

The online version of the third edition will first come out with more than 300,000 entries according to the plan.

"The online version will form an entry bank for the printed version, which will include more than 60,000 entries," Yang says.

But libraries and research institutions may want to buy the printed version because there are situations when people cannot use the internet or don't have access to a digital tool, Liu says.

Besides, there are people who prefer to read paper books or who cannot read on a screen.

The design concepts for the two versions are also different.

The printed version will be divided into volumes according to disciplines, so that literature, history, philosophy and sociology are compiled in one big category. Before each discipline will be a long entry written by noted scholars of the discipline, so as to give readers a clear idea of it.

"The length can be 30,000 characters for each," Liu says.

But online, readers prefer a shorter length, like less than 1,500 characters, so most entries for the online version will be much shorter and easy to get in a relatively short time.




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