Friday, May 06, 2005

Digital Magazines at Zinio

One of the things that came with my new machine is the Zinio Reader.

It turns out that Zinio.com sells digital magazines that you can read with their Zinio reader. The magazines are delivered to your machine digitally as they are released. You read them through the reader, and it even has a neat effect that makes it feel like you're actually flipping the pages.

So I looked into it. US News & World Report, for example, was $20 for 53 issues from Zinio.com. The trouble is that it's $20 for 53 issues from US News and World report (and you get like 40 more issues for $8 more) in print.

So with Zinio you get digital copies (better for the environment? It still depends on how much energy it takes to get the digital copy to you...) for the same price as you could get print copies. So I guess Zinio.com is really for people who just want to be pinned to their computers even more than they have to... Or perhaps don't want magazines delivered to the home address (porn?)...

So... there ya' go... incase you're interested...

2 comments:

Sophist said...

I once received a free Zinio subcription to the magazine "Foreign Policy." It was alright but somehow, browsing is still not quite right on the computer. Unfortunately, I still feel like I learn 10x more picking up and flipping through the physical magazine then browsing any publication online...

My dad, on the other hand, loves reading e-books - he likes them more then regular books. English is a second language for him so he really appreciates linking directly to the dictionary.

Zinio's a really nice idea. If it becomes wedded to a nice electronic paper tech, it would be so great! I can't wait till the whole electronic paper technology really becomes user-friendly and a true paper substitute.

Theo said...

I definitely agree that I get a lot more out of flipping the pages.

It's kinda like writing notes. I know people who like to be given lecture notes ahead of time so they can just follow along. I also know people who have tablet PC's who take their notes on them... I've also seen people who type their notes out during lectures. For some reason all of these things (especially the first) just don't seem very productive.

When you write something down, it's like hearing it three times. You have to keep it in memory long enough to write it; you have to really think about it in order to form the symbols as you write them; and then you have to read what you wrote to see if it matches what you thought. It may be hard to keep up, and this can cause a major problem if you get behind, but it can keep you on track too and help you really retain the material better.

I think the same thing (sorta) goes along with having the book in front of you... Holding it in your hands... Dynamically adjusting it for your comfort and the light and all that. Following along even as the book wiggles and such. And then teh FEEL of the paper. It's just an added sensory exposure, and I think that helps retain the information (as long as you actually are reading and not just waiting to turn the page).

However, I hadn't thought about the ESL link. That's a good point. Heck -- this is one of the reasons why I really like Wikipedia. I can cross-reference so easily.

The electronic paper they're working on now was invented in the late 70's. You'd think that very soon it'll be ready for major production. The goal is to eventually put the entire Library of Congress into one "sheet" that you could easily page through. That'd be pretty sweet.