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Computer Magazines

Community Veteran
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Registered: 02-08-2007

Computer Magazines

Over the years I have purchased numerous magazines, the majority being computer magazines but over the last 18 months the total is no more than a dozen.
Once any magazine got past the £5 mark I would only buy it in exceptional circumstances (ie several Linux Mags @ £6.99 when I first started using Linux) but to be honest there is more than enough information on various websites to cover my needs, even the local evening paper is free online so why buy it.
Do you still buy as many magazines as usual ?
Would you agree that any figure over a fiver for a magazine is excessive ?
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Community Veteran
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Registered: 08-01-2008

Re: Computer Magazines

I still get Micro Mart and PC Pro on subscription mainly due to being too lazy to cancel.
The high cover prices do seem scandalous but may be justified for more specialist titles with lower volumes.
Does anyone think that '£130 worth of free software' justifies a high cover price?  I don't as much of the 'free' software is out of date or otherwise limited.
Call me 'w23'
At any given moment in the universe many things happen. Coincidence is a matter of how close these events are in space, time and relationship.
Opinions expressed in forum posts are those of the poster, others may have different views.
CX
Grafter
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Registered: 16-09-2010

Re: Computer Magazines

I used to buy them before getting the internet (subscribed to What PC? and regularly bought Computer Shopper and PC Pro). Once I got dial-up I decided not to renew my What PC subscription, although I still regularly bought a magazine every month or two. They were useful for the software on the cover disc, to save a huge download over 56k (well, 41/42k).
These days if I buy one, it's at the airport to read on holiday.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Computer Magazines

What PC disapeared years ago
I had PC/plus from the very first, but it has gone rapidly down hill the last 6 months.
A) they stopped the cover disc, if you wanted it you had to download it
B)the last two  mags I had there was nothing windows in it, Linux, iRubish, Android and no news
I still had 6 month subs to go, phoned them up to moan and the person on the phone agreed with me, did an immediate cancellation and refunded me
had a subscription for PCW, without notice they stopped publication, still got the last one in its post wrapper unopened, they transferred the subs to Computer Active, not bad for news,
I get several outdoor magazines and two from Guild of Master Craftsmen, Wood Turning, and Outdoor Photography, more for the Ideas than the goods, I cant afford to look at the adverts
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Re: Computer Magazines

Back in my 'Beeb' days I used to subscribe to The Micro User, Acorn User and A and B Computing (I think that's what the last one was called before changing to something Archimedes World?) along with BEEBUG then RISC User.
Ahhh, those were the days of typing listings carefully and getting excited when they ran first time.
I have occasionally bought PCPlus but only when needing extra reading for a long journey.
I now subscribe to Computer Shopper and Computer Active which is a lot easier for SWMBO to understand.
I'd rather they dispensed entirely with the disc full of rubbish or useless outdated software and reduced the price or increased the number of quality articles.
I don't think I've put a magazine DVD in the drive for 5 or 6 years.
At the end of the year I throw away all magazine from the previous year so I now never have more than two year's of magazine taking up space.

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Community Veteran
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Registered: 08-01-2008

Re: Computer Magazines

Quote from: Mav
Ahhh, those were the days of typing listings carefully and getting excited when they ran first time.

You were lucky! I remember typing and re-typing one particular listing from a Sinclair magazine on my ZX81, checking every single character, double checking all 'O's and '0's etc., pulling my hair out only to get an apology for a mis-print in the following month's issue!! THEN it ran!
Call me 'w23'
At any given moment in the universe many things happen. Coincidence is a matter of how close these events are in space, time and relationship.
Opinions expressed in forum posts are those of the poster, others may have different views.
Community Veteran
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Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: Computer Magazines

I used to buy numerous magazines but cancelled most of them over the years.  The only one I get now is Computer Active.
Heloman
Grafter
Posts: 519
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Computer Magazines

I have two shelves full of Linux Format (LXF) magazines.
When I first ventured into Linux my daughter bought me a subscription as a birthday present. She's continued to do so ever since.
She now doesn't have to worry about what to buy me each birthday, and I'm not complaining!
At a price of £6.49 I wouldn't buy them myself, but they are particularly useful for the  cover DVDs which feature live boot-able discs of the latest Linux distro updates.
 
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,469
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Computer Magazines

I can't remember the last time I bought a computer mag... maybe 6 or 7 years.
I used to get several via subscriptions delivered to my door. When they first started there were a lot of good articles and a few adverts... towards the end I struggled to find the articles amongst the adverts. In one case (Computer Shopper I think) it got so thick with adverts that it did not fit through my letterbox! It was cancelled shortly afterwards, followed by the others.
Now I can find any technical info off the net, often before they appear in the mags now.
Now to put my museum / historical hat on and say....
It's a shame that many computer mags have fallen by the wayside... They can be a very valuable insight into the computer industry and other industries over the years. For instance, last year our museum (see sig) acquired the full archive (both paper copies and images) of Computer Weekly and most of electronics weekly. Its fascinating reading through some of the articles and following how things have evolved over the years, been put into use and then superseded. That there were many ideas that never took off and how the computer industry evolution is getting faster and faster. It would be very difficult to visualise that without the computer mags.
Community Veteran
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Registered: 30-08-2007

Re: Computer Magazines

I can't quite see the point of purchasing regularly PC mags unless you are about to renew one, and wish to catch up with trends (on a short term basis)
Otherwise, and I think much the same way about any specialist magazine. I suspect they are mostly browsed through and discarded into a pile for reading at a later date that never actually occurs.
I speak as someone who over the years bought mags almost as a hobby. From computer, guitar, motoring, aero (Flight) finding that the reviews (which is why I bought them in the first place) usually feature high-end outlandishly expensive kit (Computer Active being a slight exception) that would be largely out of pocket range (Guitar mags are particularly prone to this)
I should be remembered that kit reviews don't "just happen" the mag has almost certainly been given the product to review by a company wishing to plug their products and pay the mag very well for it. Hence reports and reviews are usually glowing of even the most useless of articles. And have you ever noticed, that particularly computer kit (and mobile phone) reviews on the internet always seem to be very very similar (word for word) to the publicity material put out by the manufacturer. To find a totally independent "tells it like it is" review is much rarer and harder.
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Community Veteran
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Re: Computer Magazines

I Subscribed to several photography magazines and exactly what Petlew describes about Guitar magazines also applied to photography magazines. It's not uncommon to find that the latest camera does not hold that title for more than 6 months before it's updated with a few additional features that the magazines often rave about but in many cases can be questioned.
Lens are frequently reviewed but how often are you going to be buying one as an amateur when they cost hundreds of pounds for even the cheaper ones.?
I am very cautious about magazine reviews and find websites dedicated to photography more useful, user reviews rather than magazine reviews are usually more accurate.