This is a BRAND NEW National Geographic Atlas of the World, Eighth Edition (Hardcover) book that measures 10"H x 12.5"W x 1.5"D and weighs almost 10 pounds!
From Library Journal:
For the new millennium, the National Geographic Society has completely revised its full-size (47-cm.) world atlas, last published in 1992. It reflects all of the most recent geopolitical changes, including the reversion of Zaire to the Democratic Republic of Congo with renamed provinces, the return of both Hong Kong and Macao to China, new provincial boundaries in post-apartheid South Africa, the establishment of the Canadian territory of Nunavut (incorporating Inuit communities in Eastern Arctic Canada), and the demarcation line between the Bosniak-Croat Federation and the Serbian Republic in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The map text refers to the political evolution in East Timor, but it would have been helpful to have actually shown the boundaries of that troubled territory. More than 75 large-format color maps grouped by continent portray the world with detailed, digitally painted terrain modeling. Each continent is introduced by satellite, political, and physical maps and a section with country summaries (with official flags and demographic and economic data for all independent nations arranged alphabetically). Political maps for regions and specific countries follow, and there are also detail maps of 243 major cities. In addition, new thematic maps treating environmental issues, natural resources, and human culture have been added. The index includes more than 140,000 entries for cities and natural features. The atlas will be continually updated via the National Geographic Society's new web resource (nationalgeographic.com/mapmachine), where patches will be available for downloading, printing, and pasting. This outstanding publication is highly recommended for all reference collections.
-Edward K. Werner, St. Lucie Cty. Lib. Syst., Ft. Pierce, FL
*Starred Review* The National Geographic Society (NGS) is celebrating its ninetieth year of mapmaking with the eighth edition of the Atlas of the World. Promotional material describes some of the differences from the seventh edition. There are 15,000 changes in the text and maps. The section on the "Human World" has new double-page spreads on "Migration," "Conflict and Terror," "Transportation and Communication," and "Health, Nutrition, and Literacy." These and other introductory topics have eye-catching maps, charts, graphs and photographs accompanied by a limited amount of text. "Transportation and Communication" clearly depicts the Internet explosion and the digital divide. Another change is a new "Cities" section with maps, fact boxes, and photographs of 51 world cities. Some maps are of the area (Philadelphia, Shanghai, Tehran); some of just the city center (Buenos Aires); and some of both (Beijing, Cairo, Tokyo). This section replaces the useful city-map section for each continent (which had many more maps of smaller cities) in the seventh edition.
The heart of the atlas, the maps of continents and countries, shows great cartography, the strength of NGS. As in previous editions, the Americas are first, with coverage proceeding eastward around the globe. North America is given additional coverage--22 maps for North America, 13 for Asia--since the primary readership is from the U.S and Canada. The maps are not as colorful as those in other atlases, but the number of place-names is impressive, rivaling the Times Atlas of the World (10th ed., Crown, 1999). All maps are double-page spreads, with the exception of four--Low Countries, Denmark, New Zealand, and New Guinea--that each have a single page. The binding is described as unique in that the atlas will open flat, but it is still tight, so some information will be lost if it is rebound.
An additional change from the previous edition is that the country information follows the map section rather than being included with each continent. The country facts are current, and there is a reference to the plate number for the country map. Other material includes updated geographic comparisons, for example, Mt. Everest increasing in height. Distances by air and temperature and rainfall for major cities are given in the metric system, which is not useful for many U.S. readers, although a conversion chart is provided. The index, with 140,000 entries, provides plate number and grid location with a descriptor for rivers, mountains, etc.
A Web site accompanies the atlas; its useful update section already has a printable patch for the new Great Sand Dunes National Park. Other features of the Web site are less useful, especially the flashy animations. The interactive maps will be of interest to student researchers.
...remarkable for more than its revisions, scope and artistry. It is also the product of--and showcase for--dramatic technological innovations that are transforming the ancient art and science of cartography. -- The New York Times Book Review, John Noble Wilford --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
Combining state-of-the-art cartographic technology and information with dynamic and diverse physiographic and cultural content, the Eight Edition is National Geographic's most accurate and interesting record of the world yet. The opening section, Ninety Years of Mapping at National Geographic, traces the founding of Geographic cartography to the present advances in technology and the practice of compiling and organizing geographic information. The atlas truly begins with three stunning new, full-spread world maps, that drape Earth's surface seamlessly with satellite imagery, then physical and natural features, and finally today's political world of countries and growing cities.World thematic topics are organized into two groups: the Physical and Natural World and Human Activities. The Physical and Natural World section includes captivating core topics such as the evolution of earth, geology and tectonics, climate and weather, oceans, world water, the bioshere, and biodiversity. Human Activities covers 11 world themes: population, migration and refugees, conflict and terrorism, cultures, economy, energy and minerals, communications, food, health and education, the environment, and ending with wildlands. All of these intriguing spreads reflect the most authoritative and recent data available and are reviewed by preeminent scholars and experts. Lined up after the world thematic focus is the continental division. All seven continents open with views from space and are then represented with separate physical and political maps. Larger scale regions of each continent are presented for higher definition and detail. Because of our primary readership, additional coverage is given to the United States and Canada. An entirely new component to the Eighth Edition is the city section. Maps and text discussing urban explosion will open this compilation of sixty new maps. Pictures, fact boxes, and text will accompany each city map to create colorful and informative portraits of our built environment. Selected cites such as, New York, Mexico City-the most densely populated city in the world, and Paris will receive more detailed scaling. Less familiar and remote areas of the world and beyond-the poles, the ocean floors, and space-are mapped with new data and findings and dramatic effects. The addition of a new spread and map devoted to Mars will provide a timely reference to the expected news coverage of NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Mission-Spirit and Opportunity. Flags and facts of every country in the world have been newly designed and consolidated into one section, listed in alphabetical order. Locater maps and cross referencing to corresponding large-scale map plates are provided for every entity. Text for each independent country summarizes physical and cultural aspects, while facts reveal the status of population, religion, area, capital, language, literacy, life expectancy, GDP, and economy. A user-friendly, 136 page, comprehensive place-name index cross-references over 130,000 geographical sites and areas. An appendix presents valuable, convenient reference to time zones, metric conversions, foreign terms, abbreviations, airline distances, and temperature and rainfall statistics from all corners of the globe. Navigating throughout the atlas is made easy with enhanced cross-referencing, pointers, labels and an end sheet that includes a visual key with corresponding plate numbers to all the maps. Every map spread in the atlas will include interactive features and access to up-to-the-minute updates and information via the electronic National Geographic Map Machine. Streams of information are available to us on myriad topics and on many fronts. At the same time, there is a need-greater than ever-to better understand our global culture. The Eighth Edition helps bridges the gap with a collection of maps and information that is as engaging as it is informative.