Biographies, Handbooks and Dictionaries:
Dictionaries primarily deal with all aspects of words from proper definitions to spellings. Webster's Third New International Dictionary is an example, another is the Oxford English Language Dictionary. There are a variety of dictionaries, monolingual dictionaries, multilingual dictionaries, specialised dictionaries, college dictionaries, and school dictionaries. The specialised ones are called glossaries. Harrod's Glossary of Library Science is an example. In Mathematics, Mathematische Dictionary by G James and R C James, edition 3, published in 1968 by Van. Nostrand of Princeton is another example. National standards organisations such as the British Standards Institution and the Indian Standards (now, Bureau of Indian Standards) Institution have published several glossaries on specialised fields,
A handbook is a source of knowledge. It normally emphasises recent advances in the particular field. It brings together comprehensively and collectively latest information in a field of knowledge. It covers a field of limited scope or a mission. The presentation is brief, full of tables, graphs, symbols, equations, formula and jargon which normally experts and practitioners in the field understand. The Handbook of Thin Films and the Handbook of Marketing are examples.
If information is needed on any person, a specialist or generalist one has go into a biographical sources such as Who's Who, Current Biography, Dictionary of National Biographies, Webster's Biographical Dictionary, and National Encyclopaedia of American Biography. Biographical sources cover in varying details the personal and private life of a biographic. A biography should cover in detail his/her contribution to the field of knowledge, literature, social work, religious work, political work on any other aspect of relevance.