The Complete National Geographic - Every Issue since 1888
Out of stock|
The Complete Collection: 1888-2009
121 years of articles, photographs, maps, and even advertisements as they appeared in print.
Hundreds of Classic Maps
Our most popular maps have been scanned and digitized for easy searching, zooming, and printing.
Easy to Use
Installs quickly! View, print, and download for easy access anywhere, anytime.
Powerful Visual Search Tool
Backed by the power of Bing Maps, GeoBrowse uses the Internet to let you search nearly 5,000 worldwide locations for articles, photographs, and maps featured in our complete 121-yearold archive.
Track the Evolution of a Subject
Research and insights are documented through the years by National Geographic's writers and photographers.
* Improved user interface for improved viewing of images and articles
* Advanced search functionality featuring Microsoft Bing technology
* Ability to copy DVD-ROMs to local computer drives for access anytime
* Built-in online content upgrades to allow users to keep the archive current
|Product Weight:||1.01 pounds|
|Package Length:||7.5 inches|
|Package Width:||5.5 inches|
|Package Height:||2.8 inches|
|Package Weight:||0.8 pounds|
|Average Customer Rating:|| based on 89 reviews|
|Platform:||Windows 7 / Mac OS X / Windows Vista / Windows XP|
* BONUS! 120 pg book- High Adventures: The Story of National Geographic
* Built-in online content upgrades to Enhanced user interface for improved
* Includes 120-page book High Adventure: The Story of the National Geographic Society
* Browse over 1,400 issues, 8,000 articles, and 200,000 photos exactly as they appeared in print
* 6-disc boxed set captures National Geographic magazine's past 121 years (1888-2009) * Browse over 1,400 issues, 8,000 articles, and 200,000 photos exactly as they appeared in print * Zoom, scroll, archive, and print in high resolution as you relive thousands of amazing discoveries * Advanced DVD interface lets you explore topics, search photos, browse the globe, and virtually wander back in time * Includes 120-page book High Adventure: The Story of the National Geographic Society * Ability to copy DVD-Roms to local * Advanced search functionality featuring
|Average Customer Review: ( 89 customer reviews )
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
203 of 214 found the following review helpful:
An Innovative Reference Work Nov 06, 2010
By David G. Bethany
"Admirer of music from the long nineteenth century"
Unlike the Encyclopaedia Britannica Ultimate Reference Suite, which is a collection of articles from the encyclopedia in a different format, the National Geographic Society wisely elected to scan every page of every issue of their flagship magazine, spanning the period from from 1888 to 2008. To be clear, that's every single page from cover 1 to cover 4 of every published issue, some 121 years' worth of The National Geographic. You can opt to install just the essentials and then swap DVDs as required, or install all six of them to your hard drive. I chose the latter option.
Imagine a bookcase with 10 shelves, each 12 feet wide, packed with the dead-tree version of the National Geographic: that's the amount of information this product stores on your PC. The presentation recreates the feel of holding a printed National Geographic in your hands, so you'll definitely need a 22- or 23-inch monitor to read the smaller type without squinting -- or resort to the built-in magnifier. The UI is clean and modern, but don't expect a conventional WinApp sporting CUA dating from the 1980s. Put to torch are the familiar title bar, menu bar and tool bar. What you get is akin to a sleek Website whose design isn't wholly intuitive: some menu items are hidden and only reveal themselves on mouse-over, so expect a learning curve unless you were born digital. Don't give this one to grandpa; he won't like it.
Searches are fast and may be confined to sections such as feature articles, departments, years, even advertisements. As with all other applications I've seen for the mass market, search does not support Unixlike regular expressions but in other respects is normally adequate to locate what you're after. Content may be searched by feature articles, departments, map supplements, contributors, illustrations and advertisements. Specification of start and end dates is optional. Search may be expanded to include article text, a feature not usually found in similar products. Results can be saved to a reference list for later access.
Search works well with words contained in titles of articles, headlines of advertisements and captions of graphics, but is spotty at best in full-text mode. Searching for articles about Silicon Valley worked flawlessly -- there were two, it turns out -- but a full-text search for five randomly chosen phrases within one of them worked with only two of the five phrases -- Palo Alto High School and flow cytometer -- but failed to find the other three (digital divide, regional planning, conservative institution), suggesting that the search algorithm depends on an index of some kind, a basis falling short of the standards we subconsciously expect from Web-based search. Google has spoiled us.
Text retrieval is hobbled by National Geographic's otherwise justifiable decision to make every page on your screen an exact replica of the original source material: the product is simply a huge collection of page scans from the magazine, so getting text in ASCII format for inclusion in a document is impossible without resorting the kind of trickery that must be used with PDF documents: capture the section of interest with a utility such as Screen Grabber or FastStone Capture, and then use an OCR utility to convert the resulting image to text. The need for such manipulation is rebarbative.
Another annoyance is the product's incessant querying of my floppy drive at two-minute intervals. Clack, grunt ... clack, grunt ... clack, grunt. Why does it want to communicate with an electronic dinosaur? The reason is inexplicable; floppy disks aren't part of the installation and have no conceivable use by the application. An artifact of Adobe's Air, perhaps? Who can say?
To sum up: aside from these infirmities, without which I would unhesitatingly award the product five stars, NationalGeo on DVD is a treasure well worth having and a bargain to boot. Buy it by all means!
[Edit: Afterword of interest only to those who presently have more than 300,000 files on a single hard drive.] You may well discover that your hard drive needs tweaking to support the staggering amount of data this product stores on it. My C drive held perhaps 350,000 files before the installation. Six months later it ballooned to 500,000+. Some of the increase came from NationalGeo, but the lion's share came from the gradual addition of thousands of high-res JPEGs and FLACs. Performance crept along miserably, so I used one of my favorite utilities, Diskeeper Pro, to increase the size of the MFT to the point where no more than 10 percent of available MFT records were used. This resolved performance issues. Being a software engineer, I was able to analyze and resolve the issue: others may not be as fortunate. You might consider installing this software on a dedicated hard drive to minimize I/O latency unless you are comfortable using high-end disk utilities such as the one I selected. These comments in no way constitute criticism of the product, but simply reflect the reality of processing massive amounts of data through relatively slow I/O channels. At the very least, get yourself a reliable SATA drive for the installation -- I have a preference for Hitachi -- and all should go well, unless you subsequently load the drive with a huge collection of photos and music, which will doubtless have a troubling outcome for you as it did for me.
[Edit as of 2011-11-16] After upgrading my PC to Windows 7 I had to reinstall NationalGeo (just the UI software, not the data which was not on the boot drive -- and should never be, for that matter). The Adobe Air problem returned and was not bypassable this time. After a bit of research I discovered a helpful resource on the Internet [...], which is an updated Internet installer that handles all Air-related problems and swats the floppy-drive bug noted above. Also, NationalGeo now has a free download to fix problems with the April 1953 and February 1992 issues others reviews have noted. All twenty-four 2009-2010 issues are available as a $9.95 download. I elected to buy them and now have everything from 1888 to 2010 inclusive, some 1404 issues in all. Now that's a serious research tool!]
37 of 37 found the following review helpful:
Excellent!!!! Nov 04, 2011
I've been a lover of National Geographic magazine for decades and wanted an alternative to having so many paper-based magazines. After reading all of the negative reviews I was very hesitant about ordering this product. There were 1 star reviews, horror stories about 6 hours worth of installing time, updating Adobe Air nightmares, etc.
Then, I read a reviewer explain that he didn't know what all the fuss was about. That you don't have to install the whole 60GB data, which is what I didn't want to do. His review explained to just insert the install disc (Disc 1), follow the instructions, you're done. Then only insert the other discs as needed, when directed by the computer, to review the content (not to install the data on your computer). That was the explanation I wanted to hear. I immediately ordered the product.
Installation took about 10 minutes. That 10 minutes also includes opening the packaging, pulling out the contents and picking up the discs to look at them. :-)
My Adobe Air software was already updated. There was a message about Adobe Air during the installation, but only regarding to update automatically when updates become available. I didn't bother to check this box. Adobe Air automatically signals me for updates on my computer anyway. My computer platform: Mac.
I immediately started making myself familiar with the app and reading National Geographic.
Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful!!!
127 of 149 found the following review helpful:
Search Feature is totally unacceptable Dec 25, 2010
We recently picked up this product for Christmas and are thoroughly disappointed with it.
This appears to be just a JPEG scan of every single page from the various issues, advertisements and all, and no actual "text" (the text of the articles are scanned; they didn't bother using OCR to convert it to ASCII text). The collection spans 6 DVDs only because everything is an image; the low image quality certainly doesn't need 6 DVDs and ASCII text also would not. The scanned text is also why the search feature is completely worthless: there's no text to actually search. Instead, you're simply searching a tiny subset of terms that someone decided were relevant to each article. If you were expecting to be able to do a full-text search over 120 years, as I was, you will be sorely disappointed. With this volume of articles and data, a comprehensive, full-text search feature is an absolute must. That this feature is missing makes this product totally unusable.
Having everything be a low-quality JPEG image also means that you cannot copy and paste any quotes if you are using an article as a reference in a paper.
In short, this is an interesting idea that went horribly wrong during implementation.
62 of 74 found the following review helpful:
Great information, but distressfully hard to use Oct 22, 2010
"No Time, No Money"
Got this for cheaper at my local Costco warehouse. Really excited to have all the issues of NG so far on my PC. The scans are of high quality, but the user interface, built on Adobe AIR, is frustratingly difficult to use.
First off, you *can* install all 6 DVDs' contents onto your hard disc for faster access, but each DVD takes 1-2 hours to copy to the HD and you'll need to swap the discs 5 times, which is a pain, especially on a laptop which must be set not to sleep during installation. If you run off the DVDs, going to a different page is painfully slow, even though my PC has a high-speed DVD-ROM drive.
Second, you really need a large widescreen monitor to take advantage of this, because the magazine is shown in two-page spreads. On most screens, you'll end up doing a lot of zooming in and zooming out -- and even on my super-fast quad-core PC, zooming is slow.
Third, the application is unstable and has crashed many times when I was doing routine things like flipping a page or zooming in.
I'm not sure if I'll return this to Costco, but I'm tempted to since using this software adds frustrations to my already stressful life.
297 of 369 found the following review helpful:
Extremely poor design (would be rated at zero stars if this were possible) Dec 14, 2010
The original review:
The user interface for this software is the very worst p.o.s. that I have encountered in 30 years of working with computers. It violates every known rule, or even half-baked hypothesis, of usability.
It is arguable that blindfolded chimps that are high on LSD could do a better job of designing the user interface -- in fact, that would be a really interesting experiment, perhaps something that the National Geographic IT Dept (hello, pointy-haired boss? hello?) could sponsor and then describe in a future issue of this once-competent magazine.
Some additional information:
For those who may be wondering, as I am, how a venerable institution like the National Geographic Society produced a series of poor quality software products over the past 15 years, there is an article at Harvard Business School [...]) that provides useful background information. Two quotes from the article:
"It turns out that many things that made National Geographic one of the world's top brands during its 123 years are obstacles to overcome. Like many other print publications, National Geographic's subscription revenue has declined significantly, from $284 million in 1999 to $211 million in 2009. The value of becoming a member of the Society, once a matter of prestige, has eroded. The institution has made large bets on various forms of media--Internet, movies, TV, cable programming--but is still trying to figure out the best strategy for integrating them. Despite repeated structural changes, employees still operate in silos."
"[National Geographic CEO] Fahey says his leisurely pace of change was deliberate, that creative people take longer to accept change. However, "He's been at it 12 years, and people's first loyalty is still to their silos," [HBS Professor] Garvin observes."
Apparently change is coming, but very slowly.
See all 89 customer reviews on Amazon.com