At first look, a gargantuan reference book like Business: The Ultimate Resource (Perseus Publishing, September, $59.95, www.ultimatebusinessresource.com) seems destined for dust. Billed as a one-stop resource for ideas, practices, and data on every aspect of building companies, managing people, and working, the 2.5 million - word, 2,220-page volume is a cross between a Baedeker for business and Business for Dummies. It's highly selective and slightly snobbish. And it's simplistic and lowbrow. But that split personality is part of the book's charm — and utility. Whether you're in search of a quick fix, deep thoughts, or definitions and data, this well-designed navigation key will guide you to the appropriate resource.
A version of this article appeared in the September 2002 issue of Fast Company magazine.