Apartment Therapy had a post regarding the history of Pantone today. Pantone set the benchmark in color standardization. I had always wondered who/what Pantone and now I know. (As GI Joe says, knowing is half the battle.) If you’d like to download a pdf of the Pantone color chart for yourself, go here. Obviously, the pdf will be on your monitor, so it may not be 100% accurate but it sure beats buying the chart and will certainly give you a fair idea of color options, etc.
Pantone Tutorial (If that sort of thing interests you)