Making it Modern
In 1982, a discussion arose about how to “bring this monumental dictionary into the modern age”. The Oxford University Press founded the ‘New Oxford English Dictionary Project’ in 1984. Their task was not only to publish a new integrated print edition in 1989, but also to produce “a full, electronic text to form the basis of future revision and extension of the Dictionary”. The co-editors were John A. Simpson and Edmund S.C. Weiner. It was the most adventurous computerization project seen in the publishing industry. It took them five years and it cost them $13.5 million. They retyped the complete existing Oxford English Dictionary and included all words that have been added in supplements over the years. The Second Edition of the Oxford English Dictionary is a twenty-volume print edition and includes 615,100 words and is 21,730 pages long. (OED Homepage)
In 1992 the complete second edition became available as a CD-Rom version. This new form of a dictionary on a CD does not only make updates much easier it also addresses a bigger audience. Additionally, the Dictionary is "available as an online publication designed to take full advantage of this powerful and accessible medium" (OED Homepage).
Already in 1993 and 1997 two additional volumes were published. After that they started working on a third edition. Their achievements are being published every month on the OED-Homepage.
"The Oxford English Dictionary is a living document that has been growing and changing for 140 years."