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View Poll Results: Which Science Magazines do you prefer?
Scientific American 2 25.00%
Discover 2 25.00%
Popular Science 2 25.00%
Science News 1 12.50%
Science 2 25.00%
Other 3 37.50%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 8. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 29 Apr 2005, 04:01 AM   #1
gdg
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Question Science Magazines

I was wondering if there are subscribers to science oriented periodicals/magazines here, and if so, which are preferred, and why? If you elect to vote, please post your reasons for your vote.

Let's have a poll:

Which do you (or would you) subscribe to? I'll leave the option open to select more than one, since you may use more than one.
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Old 29 Apr 2005, 05:13 AM   #2
registered_user
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I don't really read science specific magazines anymore. I've found that the "old guard" of science publications still tend to be mired in outdated ideas about technocratic social advancement. They still tend to believe that the future with a capital "F" will be determined by men in labcoats looking for the cure for cancer and not by kids in Shinjuku who find a way to use a bluetooth phone to steal candy from vending machines. Most science publications are still edited by people with this arrogantly technocratic philosophy. It just annoys me after a while (plus you can only read so many stories about the Mars probe before your eyes start to collapse into the back of your head).

I find myself reading more and more magazines that are only tangentially scientific. Things like Wired (not really that good anymore, but it's dirt cheap at $10 a year and there's at least one article a month worth reading) and Make (if you don't have this, go to a newstand RIGHT NOW and get the first issue before they're all gone).

I'm far more interested in the political aspects of scientific discovery these days than I am in the technical aspects. Architecture is politics. That was first really made obvious in the information sciences, but it's true in all fields of scientific study. There are philosophical and political beliefs at the heart of all scientific inquiry and that's really more what I'm interested in now so the traditional science mags just don't do it for me anymore.

That and magazines are too slow most of the time now. If I really want up to date cutting edge science news, that's what the web is for.

<edit>grammar

Last edited by registered_user : 29 Apr 2005 at 05:45 AM.
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Old 29 Apr 2005, 05:59 AM   #3
DrStrabismus
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Quote:
Originally posted by registered_user
They still tend to believe that the future with a capital "F" will be determined by men in labcoats looking for the cure for cancer and not by kids in Shinjuku who find a way to use a bluetooth phone to steal candy from vending machines.
Most people are more likely to get cancer than own a Japanese vending machine, so i don't really follow where you're going with that.
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Old 29 Apr 2005, 12:56 PM   #4
gdg
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Thanks for your reply, registered_user, and though most of it makes sense, I have to agree with DrStrabismus about that one statement.

Must not be much interest in science literature on these forums, heh?
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Old 29 Apr 2005, 01:38 PM   #5
rmns2bseen
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I glance through Science every now and then- there is a good mix of articles and papers covering various disciplines. My main interest (distinctly amateur) is in cosmology; if we ever get a final, unified cosmological theory we laypeople will probably get the first inklings of it in a journal like Science, so I keep an eye on several journals of that type
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Old 30 Apr 2005, 02:10 AM   #6
Joseph3_98
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I picked Popular Science. I read it sometimes when I run across it, but most of the time I'm on the NASA.gov website to check out the space projects they have going. Other than that, not much science stuff that I get interested in.

Joseph Watson
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Old 30 Apr 2005, 08:07 AM   #7
maskull
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Print media is dying.

Print media is dying. Make magazine is produced by O'Reilly, who is already in the business. And it's slow out of the blocks. The story on The Prompter has been all over the web for the past month plus. It was designed for video blogging.

Part 1
http://www.wallstreetfreethinker.com...r_20050316.htm

Part 2
http://www.wallstreetfreethinker.com...itprompter.htm


Likewise PSP hacks are all over the web. The web interface and ebook reader both suffer from the screen size, but PSP IRC looks pretty good. Screenshots here:

http://pspirc.com/

And an intelligent critique:

http://www.osnn.net/comments.php?shownews=11931
"For now you’re limited to the #pspirc channel, but the author has plans to expand the codebase to allow channel switching, plus add some inline games to the #pspirc channel, such as a trivia bot. You can use the built-in PSP keyboard interface or take advantage of the ultra-mini keyboard the developer built in to the client. Yep, we tried it and yep, it works.

From what I can tell, PSP IRC is similar to the open source CGI:IRC <http://cgiirc.sf.net> project, and not so much an actual client as a web based service. Still an impressive and clever service either way."

Did O'Reilly steer clear of discussing PSP IRC? I think so.

I doubt that O'Reilly is going to be as good a source as the web itself on this kind of stuff. Another example: The BlueTooth Sniper Rifle is not included in the DIYs, I'll bet.

BlueTooth Sniper Rifle
http://www.tomsnetworking.com/Sections-article106.php
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Old 30 Apr 2005, 08:37 AM   #8
maskull
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Scientific American

I voted for Scientific American, sometimes I pick up an issue in a waiting room, and peruse it. Like The Smithsonian or National Geographic. I bought Popular Science when I was a kid, as much for the classified ads as the articles.

Actually I agree with the spirit of reg user's statement:


"They still tend to believe that the future with a capital "F" will be determined by men in labcoats looking for the cure for cancer and not by kids in Shinjuku who find a way to use a bluetooth phone to steal candy from vending machines."

The men in labcoats are channeling a large portion of the GNP through their work - that is, sadly, probably more to the point than any "cure" they might find.

That guy cradling the $400. "BlueTooth Sniper Rifle" is cutting edge. More of that innovation/action in the medical research would be good.
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Old 30 Apr 2005, 10:39 AM   #9
DrStrabismus
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Re: Scientific American

Quote:
Originally posted by maskull

"They still tend to believe that the future with a capital "F" will be determined by men in labcoats looking for the cure for cancer and not by kids in Shinjuku who find a way to use a bluetooth phone to steal candy from vending machines."

The men in labcoats are channeling a large portion of the GNP through their work - that is, sadly, probably more to the point than any "cure" they might find.
Except that scientific research consumes a vanishingly small proportion of any country's gnp, and drug companies make huge profits from their research.

Quote:
That guy cradling the $400. "BlueTooth Sniper Rifle" is cutting edge. More of that innovation/action in the medical research would be good.
Quite astonishing that the two most fatuous comments (apart from a certain politician's statement that trees make more pollution than cars), I've ever heard should appear in the same thread (good enough for sugaR APE).

My father's life has been saved several time, and has had his sight restored by medical procedures that would have been pure science fiction in the year he was born. I was told by a middle-aged doctor that within his own working life my own leg injury would have resulted in amputation.

Can you please explain to me what exactly "That guy cradling the $400. BlueTooth Sniper Rifle"' has achieved. On the face of it he's just a petty voyeur - twenty years ago he would have been fixing mirrors onto a stick to look into someone bedroom.

It seems to me that for some "cutting edge" no longer means difficult innovation that has a useful influence on people lives, or deep understanding that contributes to the enduring store of human knowledge, it means bright shiny things that appeal to the addled brains and reduced attention spans of the MTV generation - people who believe "if something is difficult, it isn't worth doing".

Last edited by DrStrabismus : 30 Apr 2005 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 1 May 2005, 02:56 AM   #10
glebarr
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add National Geographic to that post-it is the best
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Old 1 May 2005, 04:02 AM   #11
gdg
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I have to agree that National Geographic is good, but it doesn't really fit into the science category, though it contains some articles in that category frequently.
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Old 2 May 2005, 10:00 AM   #12
maskull
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Fourteenth Fatuous Fatwah

The Good Doctor Strabismus: "Quite astonishing that the two most fatuous comments ... I've ever heard should appear in the same thread ..." Well gosh doc, you're clearly dealing with idiots, what else can be expected?

The BlueTooth Sniper Rifle was designed by Flexilis, Inc. to demonstrate at Defcon 12 the vulnerability of BlueTooth technology. Even today, BlueTooth SIG still state at their website:

http://www.bluetooth.com/help/security.asp

"... in order to carry out a bluejacking, the sending and receiving devices must be within 10 meters of one another."

Not so. The Flexilis demonstration involved accessing BlueTooth data at more than one mile. For more info about Flexilis's intentions, here's an interview:

http://www.gizmodo.com/archives/imte...ing-019057.php

So doc, I trust that this answers your question: "Can you please explain to me what exactly "That guy cradling the $400. BlueTooth Sniper Rifle"' has achieved. On the face of it he's just a petty voyeur - twenty years ago he would have been fixing mirrors onto a stick to look into someone bedroom."

Defcon 12 was held last summer in Las Vegas, many law enforcement agents attended.

http://www20.tomshardware.com/busine...defcon-03.html

"The agents said that they do recruit at Defcon and other security conventions. Recruitment has been way up since 9/11. Interested hackers have often come up to the agents asking how they can use their skills to help protect their country."

My point about all of this is that the information is available and has been for some time on the internet. Individuals wanting to build on this technology are not visiting newstands to do research. Even a new publication such as Make, mentioned at the top of this thread, will either be out of date by the time it hits the street or there will be legal questions that obviate publication of details.

Arguably, the reason BlackBerry has achieved such market share, is its wireless email function with push. If it is vulnerable, someone will exploit that. This demonstration had nothing to do with voyeurism, but rather with security.
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Old 2 May 2005, 10:26 AM   #13
gdg
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The only one in the list I've subscribed to was Scientific American, but I've looked into a couple of others listed, just off the newsstand. I will likely not continue to subscribe to Scientific American mostly because of ignorant editorials that showcase their condescending view of mere mortals that may not share quite the same worldview the Sciam staff does. They insist that if it cannot be defined within the confines of their covers, it cannot be valid, or cannot exist. In this, they seem to be more close-minded than the mere mortals they look down on.

Last edited by gdg : 18 Jun 2005 at 01:04 PM.
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Old 6 May 2005, 03:27 AM   #14
DrStrabismus
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Re: Fourteenth Fatuous Fatwah

Quote:
Originally posted by maskull
[b]
My point about all of this is that the information is available and has been for some time on the internet. Individuals wanting to build on this technology are not visiting newstands to do research. Even a new publication such as Make, mentioned at the top of this thread, will either be out of date by the time it hits the street or there will be legal questions that obviate publication of details.

[b]
This isn't cutting edge science or technology, it's dubunking marketing hype, anyone with a basic grasp of physics, would never have believed the claim in the first place
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