Friday, October 14, 2011

SF Encyclopedia Live - in beta

One of the best source books for the study of science fiction - for both the scholar and the casual fan - is The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction. Two print editions of the book appeared in the 1980s and 1990s, followed by a CD-ROM version. Now the SF Encyclopedia has gone online, and is freely accessible to everyone:

The text is a beta version: this means that the text from previous versions has been ported across, but not all entries have been updated. It also means that there may still be some formatting and factual errors, as well as glaring omissions for some modern topics.

Perhaps because his name is near the front of the alphabet, Ray Bradbury seems to have benefitted from a revised entry, although I suspect the text is little changed since the CD-ROM edition. If the editors were of a mind to be exhaustive, they might perhaps include information on some of Ray's most recent books, although many of these fall outside the SF genre. I would personally argue for some passing mention of the recent graphic novels, since they seem to have been significantly successful in market terms, and maybe a mention of "Leviathan '99", although since this novella is hidden within Now and Forever it might not be particularly visible.

There is one glaring factual inaccuracy (which I have reported): they give Ray's full name as Raymond Douglas Bradbury. Oops. Even Wikipedia knows that he has always been Ray, never Raymond!

Read the full entry here.

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