Ages 9/up (Microsoft)
Encarta Reference Suite 2000 combines several of Microsoft's powerful multimedia reference tools: Encyclopedia Deluxe 2000, Interactive World Atlas 2000, and World English Dictionary (a 5-disc set).
You will find the Encyclopedia Deluxe 2000 easier to use than ever, since it now has the look and feel of the Internet Explorer web browser and Microsoft Office - two programs with which a majority of us have become familiar. To browse some of the best media, articles and features, one can use the Encarta Explorer. Clicking on icons provides links to other pages, much like doing a Web search.
The Find box, which allows you to type in a search word, is perhaps the quickest way to find precise information. A Pinpointer list appears, which displays entries that match your search request. Once you select an article, the Contents page contains a preview of all related information, along with a media bar (an exciting feature which has samples of multimedia used in the article); a Preview box (previews of, and links to, associated features and multimedia); and Callout quotes (links to quotes within the article). Don't forget to check out the Research Organizer, a very handy tool which offers lots of assistance in creating reports. Here, text and media can be pasted from any place in the Reference Suite.
The Interactive World Atlas 2000 offers the Find and Pinpointer features, along with multimedia enhancements. Clicking on Dynamic Map brings up a globe which you can click and drag to the left, right, up or down. Clicking on a location brings up a menu with options for viewing a map of a location, reading articles about the society, land or climate, or going to hand-picked sites on the Internet.
Finally, the World English Dictionary, which also uses Find and Pinpointer, is a multimedia reference library which contains a dictionary, thesaurus, quotations, almanac, style guide and computer dictionary. It can be used independently to explore a topic and enhance written communication.