Each year, I look forward to the publication of this cornucopia of facts, factoids, and statistics. This year's annual publication meets my normal expectations.
Just looking at the table of contents gives a sense of the scope of the 2011 volume. Special features and the year in review open the volume (e.g., Top Ten News Topics, Health Care Reform, Notable Quotes, and Historical anniversaries). The year in pictures is another feature, with a series of color photos commemorating events and people from 2010.
Then, the substantive material, with categories such as: Economy, business, and energy; Crime; Military affairs; Health and vital statistics; science and technology; consumer information; US facts and history; World maps and flags; US government; US Cities, states, and population; World history and culture; Sports. The volume concludes with a detailed index.
What of statistics? I'll simply report what pops up on a few pages that I select at random. On page 203, there is a listing of philosophers and religious figures from history (e.g., John Cotton, Karl Jaspers, Johann Fichte). Page 351 features information on small Solar System bodies, such as asteroids and comets; Page 453 summarizes important historical events in American History from 1936 (Jesse Owens winning four gold medals) to 1946 (a steel strike); Page 529 focuses on election results in the 2004 and 2008 presidential elections county-by-county in Georgia. Page 591 contains basic descriptive information on two American states--North Carolina and North Dakota. Page 749 has a more global coverage--with basic data about Armenia and Australia.
There are also rich data from the world of sports. Page 875, for instance, presents a discussion of Special Olympics and then records in outdoor track and field competition. The reader is reminded that Usain Bolt holds records in the 100 and 200 meter races; Hicham El Guerrouj has records in the 1500 meters, mile run, and 2000 meter run. Page 895? Super Bowl results (as a Chicago Bears' fan, it's nice to look at the results of Super Bowl XX!). Page 921? Major league leaders in runs batted in per year from 1907 through 1990.
So, once more, a cool resource and great fun!