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'It's on the Net' is a new monthly magazine, aimed at all users of the World Wide Web. The magazine boldly states on the front cover that it is 'The UK's biggest monthly website review' and this is not far wrong because it promises over 10,000 fully reviewed websites, carefully divided into 26 categories on virtually every topic you could wish for. Inside the 'directory' of websites, you are greeted by a contents page, an editorial page, a few worthy news items and interesting features - one of these features being a guide called 'This month'- which is a guide to events in history. Then we move on to the website reviews themselves. Within each of the 26 main categories are 483 sub-categories, which are all nicely colour-coded for quick reference. I suspect that as time passes there will be more and more sub-categories added. Every subject matter is included from Art & Design, Health, Money, Nature, Reference, and Sport. In fact most of the usual items that are already shown on the numerous search engines and directories at present. The general layout and design of the magazine is excellent, it is very easy to find any given topic and the URL's of the websites are in bold text for easy reference. The first issue of the magazine has 148 pages and priced at only £2.95, which I think represents excellent value for money. Considering the fact that many other computer-related magazines all seem priced around the five-pound mark, this particular item is more than excellent value. In my opinion, Net users have been waiting for a magazine of this type for too long now and 'It's on the Net' has been long overdue. Whether you are a seasoned pro or a complete beginner to surfing, this magazine features many good sites and some pleasant surprises too. Due to the way that many of the search engines and directories are set up, a magazine like this is an invaluable source i
n finding exactly what you are looking for because it does away with irrelevant material that all too often surfaces on a typical search engine. Search engines, directories, portals - call them what you like, they are all necessary for locating information. But on how many occasions have you wasted time while searching for stuff? Rumour has it that there is going to be a new type of search directory coming to the web, called redjubjub.com and launching in August of this year. Apparently, it will use a system called a Logical Progression System for its' search technique.
This is a collection of 10000 websites with reviews. The first edition of this magazine came out in February (March edition). Its 148 pages are glossy and it looks expensive but it only costs £2.95 which is not bad for a computer magazine. WHAT IT CLAIMS TO BE: This publication claims to list 10000 websites which are quality checked and include clear and concise reviews (they could have used the words 'very short' instead). They say these listing are 'user friendly' and I'm not quite sure what a user friendly is. Any way, this is supposed to save you time on line. The best sites are gathered in this magazineceach month (they say), and they include every subject (not true). All the best sites for UK net users are supposed to be here, but i couldn't find Dooyoo anywhere so that can't be true. WHAT'S ACTUALLY INSIDE: There are several full page adverts in this magazine but apart from this it doesn't seem to have attracted much interest in that direction. The VIEWS page has no views from readers on it yet because its a new publication but the editor uses this to try to persuade you that this idea is really such a good one. 'Its On The Net', he says, was created to tell you what is actually on the net. After all you don't want to know how it all works do you? You just want to know whats there. You don't, he suggests want to know how your TV works, do you? You just want to know what's on it tonight and this is the same thing for a computer. (He makes us all sound like morons I think!) Each month, the editor promises, will see a revised list of the 10000 websites to make it the most useful and reliable guide around. There's an article on search engines and how to use them. I find this quite strange. The editor has just claimed that this magazine contains a comprehensive list of sites then we are shown how to use search engines. Do
esn't sound like they expect us to find what we are after in these listings, does it? You can read about Buffy the Vampire Slayer although I can't see why anyone would want to buy this publication to read their rather brief review. There's a double page spread on Amazon showing how to use it. I wonder if Amazon paid for this or whether the article was written because readers are likely to feel more confident when the articles are about well know sites. Next we have something that did suprise me. The editor wrote, if you recall, that we don't want to know how things work, but we do want to know whats there. There is a full page dedicated to teaching you to use email, how to get cheap surfing rates on your phone and how the new FT.com site works. This appears to be getting into the mechanics of the thing. Correct me if I'm wrong but weren't we supposed to be giving that a miss and just looking at content. THE LISTINGS: There are 10000 listings divided into twenty six categories. Topics include: Art and Design; Cars, trains, boats and Planes; Clothes and beauty; computers; education;events; family; food; government; health; history; home and garden; leisure; money; music; nature;news; reference;science;shopping; sound and vision; sport;travel; WAP; weird and wacky. Some website are reviewed in a little more depth than others and include screen shots but most just warrant a few words by way of review. There isn't any indication of how or why the sites with the longer reviews are selected. There are too many sections in this listing for me to review each one seperately but here are a selection of the entries available. I wasn't impressed but make your own mind up: CLIP ART: Barrysclipart.com clip art site. postcards. A very poor review I thought. This is an enormous free clipart site where you can get animations, etc Not just postcards. D
ICTIONARIES lineone.net dictionary of difficult words. I don't think so. Lineone.net is my ISP's url The above listings were just selected at random. If I can find these without spending hours going carefully through the listings there must be lots more that are just as incomplete or inaccurate. CONCLUSION: This magazine might only cost £2.95 and I did at first think that it might be worth buying every few months so that I could catch up with anything I might not have known was available on the net. After finding the two examples above (without looking far, as I have already said), I don't think I will be buying it again. Fair enough, it may be a case of teething troubles but this magazine has a long way to go. Think I'll save my money and use the search engines that they so kindly explained to me.
"It’s on the Net" magazine bills itself as being ‘The Uk’s biggest monthly website review.’ And I for one wouldn’t argue with that statement. It’s a relatively new magazine, I believe. I saw it for the first time in my newsagents a week or so ago and decided to buy a copy after having a quick flick through. I would have had a longer look had I been in a larger newsagents, but my local shop owner is a whinging old devil and cries of ‘Are you buying that?’ or ‘If you want to read magazines go to the library!’ were bound to be uttered as I had been reading the mag for all of three nanoseconds. Anyway at first glance it looked okay, inside the magazine were apparently 10,000 websites. Well not the actual websites of course - or there would have needed to be some type of internet connection and monitor inside the magazine which would have meant the price would have been considerably more than just under three quid! - But the URL’s for 10,000 websites covering a wide range of topics. There were also a couple of feature articles on general stuff –One on search engines and how they performed in bringing back relevant results, there was another about Amazon.com and one about Buffy The Vampire Slayer. The first five or six pages also had sidebars with newsy items and information and some websites to check out. There are also short items on other pages that cover a topic or website that is featured on that page. These don’t go into great detail, but maybe give you things like facts and figures on the subject, or when the website was launched. The actual magazine is set out like a directory – a bit like yellow pages for the Internet I suppose – and contained 146 pages. There are colour coded categories (26 IN ALL) covering various subjects like Education and Careers, Clothes& Beauty, Sport, Travel, Music, to name a few. There is also a separ
ate section for WAP and mobile Internet sites that I’m sure a lot of people would be interested in. The sections were then all split into smaller more specific groups. The Sports section for instance, covered everything from archery to volleyball. There were various website addresses for each subject, and some like athletics had quite a few URL’s while other like Lacrosse (honest it was there) only had one or two. The actual URL’s are in bold type and every website listed has a short 5-10 word review telling you about the site and its content. There are no ratings as such to tell you if the site is good great or indifferent, but the magazine does say that it only brings the best sites to its readers every month. My favourite section was the weird and wacky websites. These included a site for the Clangers (remember them?) and one of my particular favourites The tasty insect Recipe website (Can’t wait to cook for the in-laws). But was the magazine useful? Well I didn’t really think so. I mean – it would be okay if you were looking for something specific, like travel sites, or maybe a minority pastime or sport, but other than that I’m not quite sure who would use it or why. Maybe people new to the Internet would use it to get around in the early stages, but I can’t see people buying it on a monthly basis, I mean-there wasn’t even an entry for Dooyoo in any of the sections. (Shock and Horror). To be fair, the reference section was pretty good and covered a lot of areas like government information departments and things but I’m sure many people would already know of quite a lot of the websites listed. I suppose it could be argued that a magazine like this would save you having to go into a search engine and then wade through the results - some of which would be no use to you at all – to get the information you want. You could also say that looking t
hrough a pile of magazines to find what you are looking for is also time consuming, and would take up a bit of room. I would definitely prefer to look at search engine results than go through a pile of magazines. So I guess it really is about personal preferences. If you buy the magazine you are sure to find one or two really good sites that will interest you But would you be willing to pay £3 just to get the URL of a couple of decent sites?