The Coolest Book You Didn't Know You Needed.
March 26, 2004 10:04 AM   Subscribe

The Coolest Book You Didn't Know You Needed. Do you have one?
posted by ZenMasterThis (19 comments total)
My sister has one of these, so I can go next-door if I need it. (It's very tiny, especially for all the stuff inside.) Then again, now that Google walks the earth, I don't really need it. (As long as the power stays on.)
posted by LeLiLo at 10:09 AM on March 26, 2004

I have one too, it is crammed with an amazing amount of stuff. But, as lelilo notes, with Google I hardly ever use it. I guess if I didn't sit in front of a computer all day and did real work instead, I'd find more use for it.
posted by blm at 10:17 AM on March 26, 2004

Back when I was a PC tech, when 40mb Seagate drives were considered BIG, I had a Pocket PC Ref that I used to look up, amoung other things, the number of heads and cylinders which were needed when low-level formatting a drive, or on the "newer" computers, setting it in the BIOS.

G=C800:5 anyone?

As often as I need to know my Suction, Head & Vapor Press vs. Altitude, I'm not sure I need one of these books enough to carry it around with me all the time.
posted by bondcliff at 10:19 AM on March 26, 2004

I have a couple of different ones. They're useful for settling arguments. My friends and I always get into arguments over technical things and without some means to resolve it the argument devolves into "You're wrong", "No, you are!". A typical argument might be that turning a sprinkler onto your central air conditioner will result in more efficiency.

So you dig through the book, into utility bills etc and come up with a metric that proves or disproves it. This particular argument had been going on for years (I kid you not), it started in high school. It was finally resolved when I was 32.
posted by substrate at 10:20 AM on March 26, 2004

I gave these as presents to my Groomsmen at my wedding.
posted by dammitjim at 10:27 AM on March 26, 2004

It was finally resolved when I was 32.

So is it more efficient, or not?!
posted by jpoulos at 10:33 AM on March 26, 2004

These would make a great e-book for a Palm Pilot.
posted by silusGROK at 10:35 AM on March 26, 2004

Suction, Head & Vapor Press

I think I have their first CD around here somewhere.
posted by LeLiLo at 10:36 AM on March 26, 2004

Not as good as Schott's Original Miscellany or it's parody Shite's Unoriginal Miscellany
posted by brettski at 10:57 AM on March 26, 2004

jpoulos, when you figure in the cost of the water and the actual improvements in air conditioning efficiency water cooling is a loss.
posted by substrate at 10:59 AM on March 26, 2004

Sounds like a geekier versions of Pear's Cyclopaedia which I used to love browsing as a child.

I don't agree that Google's replaced it; you get so much conflicting "information" on the Web - and can spend ages looking for it - that a compendium like this is great to have.
posted by Pericles at 11:06 AM on March 26, 2004

Just because the web tends to be conflicting doesn't mean this is better, just that you'd have only one of this. I've seen far too many mistakes in technical data books…
posted by fvw at 11:17 AM on March 26, 2004

All I need: The Rubber Bible. Well, not all, but darn close. I still use my edition (67th) almost every week.

Fun Fact: You can tell what year a chemist/physicist started university by their edition of the Handbook.
posted by bonehead at 11:21 AM on March 26, 2004

Got one.
Most hardware nerds have the PC Pocket handbook, but the standard one is way cooler. All kinds of stuff about everything.
posted by thisisdrew at 12:25 PM on March 26, 2004

brettski, I was going to post the same thing. And I didn't know about the parody.
posted by emelenjr at 1:04 PM on March 26, 2004

I've got one too, found it at a yard sale and was like, "A buck? Uh sure!" Great book, easy to use and very, very handy, even with Google available.
posted by fenriq at 3:32 PM on March 26, 2004

Got one, too. Best thing about it is what you find when you're looking for something else. This doesn't seem to happen as much googling - everything you see has been filtered, whereas all the google chaff is mostly crap.

I've got it shelved right next to "How to Run a Lathe" featuring slug-like guys with crew cuts.
posted by skyscraper at 4:22 PM on March 26, 2004

I have one. Bought one for my father, too. He was pleased with it.
posted by bz at 4:36 PM on March 26, 2004

Oooh...I want one!
posted by SisterHavana at 6:05 PM on March 26, 2004

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