Amending the Texts

New technology promises to make them more accurate, up-to-date, interactive--and lightweight

Going by the book may be a dubious practice when it comes to textbooks. A recent study by North Carolina State University documented thousands of errors in 12 of the most widely used middle school science texts: the Statue of Liberty is a lefty? Volume equals length times depth--and never mind height? It was merely the latest illumination of textbook bungling. In 1999 the mathematicians enlisted to review math books submitted for use in California said they were "shocked" by the frequency of mistakes--as many as one on every four pages. Mel and Norma Gabler, the self-anointed textbook watchdogs of Longview,...

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