Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia 1997 Newsmakers Survey Reveals Who’s Hot and Who’s Not

REDMOND, Wash., Oct. 7, 1997 — What was the year’s most phenomenal scientific event? Who was hot in sports this year? Which Hollywood star is burning bright, and who’s burned out? In celebration of five years on top as the world’s best-selling multimedia encyclopedia, editors of the Microsoft® Encarta® multimedia encyclopedia commissioned a public opinion poll to find out who Americans viewed as
in five categories of interest.

According to voters, the Mars Pathfinder mission was the
event in science, skyrocketing to the top of the list. In sports, Tiger Woods slam-dunked Michael Jordan as the biggest contributor to sports, according to 91 percent of survey respondents. Big-screen adventurer Harrison Ford flexed some muscle in the entertainment category, surpassing industry icons Oprah Winfrey, Tom Cruise, John Travolta and Madonna.

The fifth anniversary editions of Microsoft Encarta, scheduled to hit store shelves this week, shed light on these and other interesting facts and figures about the world’s most significant events.

Encarta 98 Encyclopedia and Encarta 98 Encyclopedia Deluxe Edition offer a wealth of extraordinary new content and interactive features. Since Encarta launched in 1993, the reference-software category has grown 739 percent in unit figures, according to PC Data. Now all other major publishers in the print-encyclopedia industry have made the transition to multimedia. Yet Encarta continues to be the favorite among users.

“What Encarta provides is a rich multisensory experience that draws users in and inspires further learning,”
said Craig Bartholomew, general manager of the reference business unit at Microsoft.
“What might have been a task or a chore suddenly becomes an engaging experience. Today, hundreds of thousands of families in America use a multimedia encyclopedia, and we are proud that Encarta has been the leading product in this category for five straight years.”

Encarta 98 Encyclopedia: Two Versions

This year, Microsoft Encarta 98 Encyclopedia has expanded to two CD-ROMs. The deluxe version has even more content and features, as well as a separate report-writing application called Research Organizer.

New and Improved Features in Encarta 98 Encyclopedia Deluxe Edition

Extensive usability testing, editorial efforts and advances in multimedia technology have resulted in invaluable additions to the new Encarta 98 Encyclopedia Deluxe Edition. The title contains a total of 32,000 comprehensive articles, 16,000 media elements including photos and illustrations, 2,300 sound clips and 150 videos and animations. It also features exclusive multimedia, online and accessibility features. Among its highlights are the following:

  • Six thousand new and updated articles on a wide range of topics come complete with 900 informative Sidebars – text from famous documents and speeches, guest essays and views of times from notable newspapers and magazines.

  • New media and interactive features include 19 new Virtual Tours that link 360-degree views with still images, sound clips, related articles and content to provide a unique perspective on human and natural wonders such as the Space Shuttle, Mayan ruins and the Grand Coulee Dam; 24 InterActivities on topics from human anatomy to reconstructing dinosaurs; and thousands of images, video clips and audio clips.

  • The Encarta 98 Research Organizer offers a handy way to gather information from a variety of sources, make virtual note cards, arrange them in an outline and construct a report. This useful tool fosters good research habits and report-writing skills.

  • Accessibility tools include closed captioning and quick searching.

  • New online features include streamlined, automatic monthly updates and over 10,000 searchable Web Links.

“Research Organizer is a revolutionary new tool,”
said Pam Berger, editor and publisher of Information Searcher, a newsletter for librarians.
“Teachers see the benefits of it as twofold. It’s a terrific starting point for student research projects, and it helps teach the principles of solid research, organization and correct citation of a source. For many students, these skills are some of the toughest to master.”

Other Members of the Encarta Family of Products

  • Encarta Virtual Globe 1998 Edition. Formerly known as the Encarta World Atlas, Encarta Virtual Globe is a comprehensive world atlas and essential geographic-reference companion to the encyclopedia. Encarta Virtual Globe enables users to pinpoint more than 1.2 million place names around the world and discover the beauty and diversity of people and cultures in stimulating and visually exciting ways.

  • Encarta Reference Suite 98. The Microsoft Encarta Reference Suite 98 includes Encarta 98 Encyclopedia Deluxe Edition, Encarta Virtual Globe 1998 Edition, and the Bookshelf® 98 CD-ROM reference library – three of the world’s most popular multimedia reference products – in one package.

  • Encarta 98 Encyclopedia Deluxe School Edition. Designed to help educators chart a course for student exploration and discovery, the Encarta 98 Encyclopedia Deluxe School Edition includes a Teacher’s Activity Guide.

Pricing and Availability

Microsoft Encarta 98 Encyclopedia and Encarta 98 Encyclopedia Deluxe Edition for the Microsoft Windows® operating system are available for estimated retail prices of $54.95 and $79.95, respectively. Users of Encarta 98 Encyclopedia may subscribe to monthly online updates of Web Links and Encarta Yearbook for $19.95 for 18 installments (requires Internet access; Internet access charges may apply; available to users of Encarta 98 Encyclopedia Deluxe Edition at no charge). The Encarta 98 Encyclopedia Deluxe Edition for the Macintosh is also scheduled for release in fall 1997 for an estimated retail price of $79.95. To take a tour of these new products, visit the Encarta Web site at ( .

Academic editions for Windows and Macintosh are scheduled to be available in the Deluxe Edition for only approximately $69.95. Approved schools and other educational institutions may obtain all three products at a discount through the Microsoft Open License Pack program, a flexible plan for acquiring Microsoft products. (See an authorized academic reseller for more information.) Microsoft Encarta Virtual Globe 1998 Edition for Windows 95 and the Windows NT® Workstation operating system is available for an estimated price of $54.95. Microsoft Encarta Reference Suite 98 for Windows 95 and Windows NT Workstation is available for approximately $109.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

Microsoft, Encarta, Bookshelf, Windows and Windows NT are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.

Categories and events in the survey were screened and selected by the editors of Microsoft Encarta.

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