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News item dated 9 January 2012

It’s now three months since the SF Encyclopedia site was launched. We, the editors, and the website experts at STEEL have made a great many changes since October 2011, adding new material, correcting text errors and omissions, and fixing problems with the site.

The SFE now contains about 138,500 more words than the launch version – a whole long novel’s worth – spread over existing entries and more than 300 new ones, while approximately 4900 new internal links have been added. (Figures taken from the introductory Statistics page.) Also, nearly 300 magazine entries now have links to checklists with cover scans at Phil Stephensen-Payne’s Galactic Central.

Reader feedback – which for a while became overwhelming when we were linked from Slashdot – was strongly in favour of a switch from all-capitals links to upper and lower case: not 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY as inherited from the book editions via the CD-ROM, but 2001: A Space Odyssey. After some struggle to change all the headwords and links in 3.36 million words of text, this new look is now in place. Other suggestions for improving the appearance, like removing underlines from links, are in the request queue. Senders of text corrections (via the email contact form) and PayPal donations, unless anonymous, are gratefully listed in the Acknowledgments. Our thanks to all.

Early problems with the search engine have been fixed, and notes on search refinements added. There is now a Frequently Asked Questions page. Both can be reached from the SFE home page and through the About us link always visible at top right.

Graham Sleight of the SFE team and Darren Nash of Gollancz talked about the SFE and SF Gateway in a pair of Starburst magazine interviews. Later: Peter Nicholls was also interviewed, by The Independent.

We’re still aiming for four million words by the end of 2012. Keep watching the skies.

John Clute, David Langford, Peter Nicholls and Graham Sleight

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