Cetacean Society International

Whales Alive!

Vol. V No. 4 October 1996


World of Whales CD-ROM

By Robbins Barstow


An outstanding CD-ROM about the "World of Whales" has been produced by a New Zealand multi-media company called Terabyte Interactive, distributed internationally under the brand name TeraMedia.

It is a creatively designed audio-visual information package which can provide hours of interesting and challenging, interactive learning time. Each section contains a variety of delivery systems, with many, short, film clips and voice descriptions for on-screen call-up by clicking on indicated words or icons, while whale-oriented sounds and music play in the background. Photos, paintings, and other enticing graphics are used effectively throughout, on the small, interactive screen.

Four major sections provide colorful images and stimulating bits of knowledge concerning (1) whales, (2) the world they live in, (3) the relation of people to whales, including whale killing and whale watching, and (4) the outlook for whales' future. Included in many of the information subsections are brief, filmed, on-screen statements by representative persons, including individually identified scientists and researchers, Norwegian and Japanese whalers, and Greenpeace and other conservationists.

Anyone who has a CD-ROM player with a color screen should find this a fascinating audio-visual encyclopedia about whales and issues related to them. Filmed treatments are necessarily somewhat superficial, but a "Research" appendix on the CD-ROM offers extensive, word-only texts providing in-depth articles and analyses of much of the disc's content.

The "World of Whales" CD-ROM can be ordered over the Internet for $49.95 United States dollars by connecting with the Teramedia World Wide Web site at: http://www.terabyte.co.nz.

A demonstration copy of the CD contents can also be downloaded from this site. It was a first place winner in the Digital 1996 Hollywood Awards.


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