Technology: Tome Raider

New versions of three electronic encyclopedias battle for supremacy

Remember when researching a seventh-grade paper on the Eiffel Tower meant trudging to the school library and lifting--I mean, paraphrasing--passages from the hefty encyclopedia? Even in the world of Google, a good encyclopedia can still be a student's best friend. And the latest electronic versions wisely make use of the Web. In some cases, the online version is even better than the CDs or the DVD.

Here's how the latest releases stack up:

--Britannica Ultimate Reference Suite 2004 DVD With more than 100,000 articles on everything from alpaca to Zionism, this encyclopedia ($70) is by far the most comprehensive. I...

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