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I have been a subscriber for more years than I care to remember - in fact, I just threw out a load of old copies and asked myself (yet again) "Why do I keep them for so long?" - and there is a simple reason why I continue to subscribe. In a word QUALITY!! Now some of the opinions here talk about IM being too technical for the beginner or lacking in depth but I have to disagree. I accept that since my job directly involves the Internet I am not a beginner but when I started getting IM regularly I was by no means the genius (?) that I am now! My experience tells me that it is better to learn by reading above your current level of knowledge otherwise how can you hope to expand your knowledge? I will add a proviso to this since I can see a glossary being invaluable at times when they deal with extremely technical issues. I find the approach they take is both interesting and thought provoking without being too deep. Many articles touch on aspects of Internet life that I would not normally consider (but should) and each months issue consistently broadens my horizons. The cover CD is a handy resource for internet-related software (e.g. latest browsers, webmaster tools, etc) and can save people plenty of download time. Their regular review of ISPs and Hosting companies has been most informative despite the fact that I have found some ISPs will dispute the figures that are quoted - notably those lower down the "league table" I should add! The "Site Surveyor" section provides a useful insight into popular commercial sites as well as covering amateur offerings in the "Home Improvement" section. Both beginner and advanced Internet users can learn from the comments they make about design, navigation and content requirements of a "good" web site. IM also features regular technical articles on such subjects as including Video on your site, using Flash and streaming audio. On the wh
ole the magazine is more skewed towards the PC market (as opposed to MAC or Linux) and they occasionally are criticised for this but personally I feel that they have the balance right and it accurately represents the split in the real world. While it can be said that IM is mainly targeting the web professional and internet-enabled businesses, there is still plenty in each issue for the beginners out there and some good advice for those just starting out in the "e-world". An excellent publication, highly recommended - take out an annual subscription and save a fortune plus it gets delivered to your door!!
I subscribe to several computer magazines and buy most of the others on a regular basis. Considering many of them are £4.99 with a CD and £5.99 with a DVD it can be quite a drain on the pocket! That’s part of the reason I Internet Internet magazine, it cost only £3.50 and comes with decent cover CD. It also contains less advertising than many of the others. I buy this magazine every month. I keep meaning to subscribe but for some reason never get round to it. The saving of £1 a month isn’t that attractive to me, perhaps because I keep worrying that I’ll go off this magazine the way I went off .net last year. Internet Magazine markets itself at ‘people who know about the net but want to know more.’ and this is part of the reason I don’t *love* this magazine, I *like* it, but sometimes think it pats itself on the back too much and doesn’t know who it’s aiming itself at. I’ll explain that statement as the opinion goes on. I have an old issue in front of me - May 2001 if anyone is that bothered. It’s reasonably representative of the content of the magazine, and just happened to be at hand. Opening the first page you see an advertisement for Magic Moments hosting. Most of their advertisements are actually for major hosts that offer enterprise solutions. ‘People who know about the net but want to learn more’? Really? That kind of person should be looking at paying Geocities that bit extra for a domain name for their site, not at a £250 - £500 per year hosting solution! That’s for businesses and belongs in the more ‘businessy’ computer magazines, in my opinion anyway. Next is the index and a listing of the contents of the cover CD There’s quite a list of demos, freeware and shareware for both the PC and Mac. Some things such as Dreamweaver, Flash and Fireworks appear as 30 day trials every month, along with the usual In
ternet Explorer, Netscape, Opera and a nice array of FTP programs. You won’t often see any expensive full version programs given away on the CD but the freeware choices are usually worth a look. I’d rather have a couple of nifty freeware programs than an expensive chunk of bloatware that I’d never want or use. The CD has a browser based interface which is better than most and even managed to run on an old 486 DX 75 with 8Mb RAM! Considering some of the CDs today require Flash to be installed, that’s pretty good! The 'Editors Welcome’ is a short column by, you guessed it, the editor. Usually its the same old moan about how the media is down on the Internet all the time or how long DSL is taking to cover the country. <yawn> Browser is the news section. This is one of the more interesting parts of the magazine for me. Since I subscribe to so many magazines I find that after having read one, the news section in the others is usually almost identical. Internet Magazine being what it is, the news is more targeted to online life. That means you hear less about Intel and more about Oftel. There area few regular columns in browser - Bookmarks of the rich and famous is usually yawn worthy, but sometimes they feature someone interesting. My favourite though is the ‘Smiley Guide To Internet Users’ or, what your ISP says about you. This can be quite a giggle sometimes although I found last months ‘Itsgoodtogive.co.uk’ a little scathing - I wouldn’t nock the fact that £2 a month from their subscription fee goes to charity, that really *does* make a difference! Still, that’s being touchy and the column is a good laugh. Hot Downloads lists the best downloads available and includes a ‘Hot List’ of ten sites for downloading a particular thing, like fonts for example. I almost always find a program worth downloading in there somewhere! Trend S
potting gives an overview of the web - each month they cover a new statistic - how much time is spent online, what browser is used, what ‘web brand’ is most well known, etc, in each country. This can be quiet revealing at times! Site of the month is something I usually skip over, although one month Dooyoo’s competitor, Ciao, was featured in this and I did read that with a smile. I wasn’t impressed with what they had to say though! To me that section is really just free promotion for whatever site is featured on it. <yawn> The Internet Interview is, um, an interview with someone big in the net world. (As if you hadn’t guessed already.) I only read this if it’s someone interesting as most of the time the interviewee just pushes their company. This ma sound superficial but I have one request to this magazine - get rid of those full page facial photo’s of the guys you’re interviewing - I don’t want to know how spotty company directors are! Like most magazines, there are plenty of opinion columns in here. I enjoy reading these - some I agree with, others I don’t. Thankfully there’s a broad range of subject covered in them, from Napster, Microsoft and the other usual battles to ways of combatting spam and the governments general ineptness at all things ‘e-’ The letters page, called Mailbox, is also nice to read. Internet Magazine aren’t in the habit of printing self congratulatory letters, so usually this page is full of rants, insightful comments and helpful tips. Each month they have a major feature that takes up about six pages - in May it was ‘Speed’ about speeding up your Internet access - either by getting DSL or using download accelerators, whatever it takes. This is where I come back to my ‘People who know about the net...’ argument. Its very rare indeed for me to learn anything from that kind of
feature. I have learned more from Ivan Iwannado in Computer Shopper, and he is pitched very much at beginners. At least Ivan tries new things - these ‘features’ seem more at the Computer Active level, and don’t belong in this magazine. I also found the other feature in this issue ‘Speak Easy’ incongruous considering it was near an advertisement for a hosting product. It was about Internet terms. They got the definition of churn wrong you know! Now we come to some more good bits - an article on peer to peer services and distributed computing. This is the kind of article I’d like to see more often. It’s pitched at a decent level - enough background to introduce those concepts to beginners but enough detail that most people should find something useful, even if it is just a URL for further reading. Site Surveyor takes a look at a bunch of web sites and has them rated by experts. If you’re looking for design ideas this may be interesting, but I prefer surfing myself to looking at their selection - it’s usually too narrow to offer any ideas, but if you do get an idea from that page then I guess it has done a good job - it’s pot luck really. ‘Home Improvement’ is an extension of site surveyor, but looking at readers pages. If you're lucky enough to get featured then the expert critique and the extra hits must be great! One day I’ll remember to submit one of my sites - if I ever gather up the guts! Their version of an advice / problems page is Expert Help. The problems in this are varied and interesting. Some are simple beginners problems others obscure and strange. They make interesting reading anyway. Expert Help also contains extended help / troubleshooting sections on common programs like Outlook Express / Internet Explorer, and tips on security and safety online. There are also web design how-tos’ The quali
ty and level of this information varies. I have learned about some features of Outlook Express from this section for example, but the web design section is, in my view, very basic. Again I wish this magazine would make it’s mind up. Is it targeted at office workers, home users, web designers, web design companies or big businesses? I don’t think it’s going for mass appeal because it’s always the same - advertisements for expensive hosting solutions with PHP / mySQL along side a guide to putting a form on your web page! Who exactly would learn from that tutorial then go and respond to an advertisement for that hosting solution? I would expect to see adverts like this in Internet Works, which is a much more business oriented magazine, not in Internet Magazine, which is aimed at ‘people’ not ‘people making purchasing decisions in companies’. If they lowered the level of the other tutorials they’d be in the same market as Internet Made Easy, but if they raised the level of the web tutorials then I would subscribe in an instant. The general ‘Computer Magazines’ don’t feature the Internet enough for me to rely totally on them, and .net, whilst having more variety tutorial wise has gone a bit ‘trendy’ for me. This magazine has a chance to fill a niche and they haven’t taken it. The next magazine up the computing ladder is Dr Dobbs Journal, but that’s a totally different level, and, whilst a great resource at times (OK, once I bought an issue - most of the technologies in there I’ve no idea about!), is hardly leisure reading! Their ‘labs’ or tried & tested section continues the confusion over marketing - free home page builders! Homestead and Geocities are places that every self respecting Internet user should already have heard of. Why are they testing them out? Later they go on to look at home network starter kits. Much
more like it! Now we reach the reason I buy this magazine. The Provider Lab Test. They test out around 150 ISPs for speed and reliability and rank them based on their performance that month and over a six month period. I spotted this magazine around about the time I was getting unhappy with BT Internet (meaning the day after I joined them!) and decided that next time I moved ISPs I’d do it carefully. I looked first for an ISP with a reasonable price, then checked their ranking in this listing. I’m happy so far! This section is well worth keeping an eye on if you’re looking for a good ISP. They also run ‘hosting lab tests’ which again I find hard to believe. I tried choosing a host from their listing and simply couldn’t find an affordable, well featured package. I’d love to know which section of the readership the hosting tests are aimed at! As usual they have a faxback section, but since I’ve never used it I can’t comment on it. Over the past few months there’s been a ‘campaigns’ section where they talk about their fight for Internet access for all and a ‘certificate of Internet proficiency’ for school children. Apparently this certificate will make sure that children stay safe on the net, avoiding paedophiles and child pornography. Call me a cynic but I think this certificate is a chance for the magazine to talk about how good it is - especially considering they take a cynical attitude about the motives of rivals who do good things. I also think the certificate has no chance of working. I help out at a catholic school from time to time, and I know that educating children about using search engines will not stop them from finding porn, it will assist them! Children don’t need ‘protecting’ - if they were so innocent why would they be going out of their way to disable Net Nanny and type words that aren’t permissib
le on Dooyoo into a search engine. Now, just imagine what they could find if they knew how to do Boolean searches! I’m kidding there but I just wish they’d drop the campaign pages - get on with the certificate if they want to, but don’t congratulate themselves about it in every issue, it’s getting annoying. Finally we come to about ten pages of advertisements then ‘disconnect’ also titled’ If you don’t do anything else this month, do this...’ usually this reflects the content of the rest of the magazine - in May it was check out your broadband options. Other times, such as when they were going on about SETI it was look at a web site about distributed computing. Whatever. I think I’ve been more negative about this magazine than I intended - especially since I am considering subscribing. I’ve been buying it for quite a while now, and I would be saving money if I subscribed, but I only really buy it for the news and the ISP tests. The rest of the magazine is to me either boring, irrelevant or below my level, whilst the advertisements are promoting things that I could use but can’t afford - and they never have tutorials that show you how to make the most of them! Womens magazines explain what you need then try to sell you it, perhaps the editors of this could learn from them! I’ve shown this magazine to beginners who found it ‘too techy’ and were put off by advertisements selling acronyms they don’t understand. These users weren’t put off by the snippets of code you see in Computer Shopper, but by the interviews with high flying businessmen they’ve never heard of promoting a dream they don’t care about, and the ‘in your face’ pushing of technologies that they don’t feel they need. So who exactly is Internet Magazines audience? And what exactly do you have to know to ‘know about th
e net’? Answers in a comment please. Oh, and yes, I recommend it to a friend, I guess, but I don’t know who that friend is. Then again, if you don’t mind buying a magazine where only at most one third of the content is relevant to you then I guess it’s worth a look. Personally I still buy this, but find magazines like Computer Shopper much better value in terms of how much of the magazine is actually enjoyable.
I first received this magazine as a free gift and have since subscribed. The basic gist of the magazine is to advise internet users of all levels of new products, answer questions on all related topics and compare various ISP's. There are lots of 'tried and tested' features which should enable you to make an informed decision. The good thing about this magazine is that it highlights 'free' sites as well as those offering chargeable facilities. One of my favourite sections is the 'links' page where you can pick up all sorts of great sites to visit. I often visit ones from here which I had never thought of before. The 'your questions answered section' is easy to follow and has enabled me to fix a couple of 'burning' issues with my PC through their advice to users with similar problems. The magazine also comes with a free CD with lots of great programmes at your disposal plus a section inside the magazine which 'explores' the CD. The magazine retails at 3.50 but I would say that a subscription is well worth the effort.
Internet Magazine has plenty of good articles to interest the reader be they a web novice or a hardened designer. However I find that they all too often use language in those articles that puts somebody with little or no experience from taking that great leap into web page construction. This is a lone criticism as the rest of the magazine definitely stands up to the test of usefulness to the intermediate and advanced web page builders. I think that if they instituted a page that acts like the creches many companies use to train new entrants to the profession that they would almost certainly increase their readership as people new to the activity would utilise the staffs experiences. The magazine has all the normal features of its siblings such as scripting pages, sites of interest, how the Internet Service Providers are performing in the latest survey and reviews of new items on the market pertaining to the Net. Internet magazine has a good but not great coverdisc, I personally prefer that which comes on the front of.net magazine, however all the good tools are there nestling alongside up to date browsers, drivers, imaging programs and so the list goes on. A good magazine for those with experience but it definitely needs to buck its ideas up for the novices.
Being in the IT industry I subscribe to three magazines to keep me up to date with the latest goings on. These are Internet magazine; Net magazine and PCPlus magazine, the other two of these are also reviewed by myself on their own sections. The reason for buying all three that between them I get the full picture and all the information I could want, whether it be hardware, software, news or just coding bits. Obviously Net and Internet magazines deal with the Internet side of things while PCPlus spreads itself through all the areas of computing. Between the two I think that Net magazine is the more technical and offers more in the way of coding tips whereas Internet magazine is more for a general surfer type person. Internet magazine costs £3.25 and is published by Emap Publishing and can be found in most newsagents. It comes with a CD every month packed with utilities and demos, the only gripe I have wit this is that the CD comes in a flimsy plastic sleeve and you have to either run the CD or look in the magazine to see exactly what is on it, whereas with the other two magazines they come in CD jewel cases with clearly written lists of software included on the back. The first section of the magazine is ‘Brower’ which goes through all the latest industry news, at a business and consumer level. This includes an ‘In Brief’ section which gives you small tit bits of info, ‘Bookmarks Of The Rich & Famous’ which picks on a celebrity every month to talk about how they use the internet and what sites they like best, ‘Essential Viewing’ which guides you to the very best of the webs offering, ‘Hot Downloads’ which tells you what you should have running on your machine and lastly ‘Trend Spotting’ which every month gives you the latest stats on whose looking at what in what area at what time etc, etc. Overall a very informative section. The next section
section also covers the non-development issues, like design tips, marketing issues as well as hosting your site. We then come onto the ‘Tried & Tested’ section, which reviews all Internet related software from web design tools, to graphics programs, to site submission tools, to operating systems. This is very informative and gives you the low down on all the latest Internet tools. An interesting part of this section is where they compare all the latest stats for ISP’s and web hosting companies. This is something that is a great help as you can see what companies are improving and which are not quickly and easily. So if you have read my other review of Internet Magazine you should have a clearer picture of how different they are and why I buy both. That basically rounds it all up, there are some smaller sections I missed out but I hope I have given you good rough picture of the magazine overall.
Internet Magazine is consistantly the best magazine for the budding webmaster. Not only does it have a monthly CD packed full of the must-have programs it has many many useful tips and solutions for those building web sites. It aims at the intermediate to business level customers, I would probably not recommend the magazine to a net newbie (although they would love the CD). The links, articles and editorials are to a consistant high standard. It is also one of the cheaper magazines on the market. My favourite section is the ISP rating section. This details how each ISP in the UK has performed in the last month in the IM tests (which are completely independent). Also included are which web hosts are performing in the best way. Interesting monthly sections include readers web sites that are given a makeover by "the experts". They give hints and tips on style, content and layout and often have follow-up articles showing how the featured sites have changed over the year after being in the magazine. Its only downside? It only comes out once a month!
Internet Magazine is a magazine based on web building, internet, and software. Every issue comes with a cover disc with the most useful software ranging from email clients, design software, web accelerators, audio players, image optimisers and instant messengers all of which saves you downloading it from the web. Internet Magazine is split into the following sections - - Browser - News Section on isps, viruses, entertainment. - Opinion - Discussions, mailbox with your opinions etc. - Features - Cover stories - Site Surveyor - Experts advice on readers websites, essential viewing where they show you the top websites, site fo the month. - Expert Help - Your questions answered, tutorial on eh something etc - Tried and Tested - Tests software(anti virus software, audio players) by comparing, givews you a final conclusion to which you should try/buy. Tests every month to see which isp(internet service provider) is fastest of the month. Internet Magazine costs £3.50, out monthly. This as my favourite internet magazine because the content is brilliant compared to others. There website url is www.internet-magazine.com
This magazine is most definetley aimed at businesses and webmasters in businesses. There are lots of adverts, some of which are interesting to the casual user, but mainly nothing interesting. The articles are aimed at both the casual user and the businesses, there are some on laws affecting everyday net activities, the magazine tests ISP's and Hosts so that users can decide which ones they want to use. They have a section where profesional web designers review and give tips to readers and their sites. They have a special spotlight on one kind of site, e.g. in the one that I read it was travel. They also have a short run-through of the other types of site. The magazine isn't all bad, they do have some nice features sometimes in the edition I read they had an article about Instant messengers, suggesting alternatives to the bad ones (A*L, M*N). They also do a "site surveyor" bit, where they go through some of the sites sent in by readers, and give tips and advice on how to improve that website, the problem is that you then have to but a later issue to find out if they've checked your site, and what they think of it. One of the things I would like to know is why some of the money is in dollars, some in dollars with the pound value next to them, and some are only in pounds. If this is supposed to be a British magazine they should have all the amounts in pounds if you ask me, yes I know that the Net is US dominated but if we are going to embrace it we need to know what $35 billion is in pounds (this from an article about the UK goverment selling 3G licenses!). Overall, the casual Net user is not recommended to buy this unless they want specific information on a subject or ISP they are featuring. For business owners/webmasters this magazine is definetley recommended.