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Dr. Dobb's Journal Going Web-Only

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the times-change-and-sometimes-that's-good dept.

The Media 233

paleshadows writes "The first issue of Dr. Dobb's Journal (DDJ) was published in January 1976. A few days ago, Herb Sutter (the chair of the ISO C++ committee and a long-time DDJ columnist) announced through his latest blog post that, 'as of January 2009, Dr. Dobb's Journal is permanently suspending print publication and going web-only.' This follows an earlier announcement that PC Magazine is to become digital-only, too, as of February 2009. To those of us who enjoy reading such stuff away from the computer these are bad news, as there seems to be no other major technical programmers' magazines left standing."

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Missing Options (1)

Arthur Grumbine (1086397) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345421)

Well, you could shell between $300 and $400 for one of the hit-and-miss eReaders currently available [cnet.com] . Or you could shell out between around $600 [ebay.com] for a slightly less elegant eBook reading solution that with can also act as your car stereo, navigation (with some work/extra parts), and more-useful-than-most general purpose netbook. I know which route I'm taking (although I'll probably wait to see what netbook-tablet offerings there are at CES).

Re:Missing Options (5, Insightful)

OrangeTide (124937) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345477)

Magazines shouldn't need batteries.

Another missing option (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26345525)

It is called the "Cow Tax [cowtax.com] ." They are trying to TAX farmers for owning cattle which "might" release greenhouse gasses. Beats releasing a bunch of broken glass from one's back orifice. For more details, see the link, but beware!

Knob, Dr. Knob (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26345731)

Dr. Knob's Penis Going Wood-Only,
Fans of Limp Dicks Upset

You must be confused (-1, Flamebait)

Arthur Grumbine (1086397) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345999)

I'll try to use smaller words and type this reply really slowly, to make sure you can understand. Those links weren't for magazines. They were for electronic (aka "magic") devices that would allow you to view the same content (that's a fancy word that means "words and pictures") that are in certain magazines and books. One of those "devices" even allows you to view full web pages, and do other stuff, like play "Hello Kitty: Island Adventure"!

Some people claim that the appeal of these devices over a magazines and books is that you have the ability to carry the content of dozens of your favorite magazines and books, without a very large bag. You've convinced me, though, I hate things with batteries. I'll just get my shopping cart when I want to go to the park for a couple hours to read but I can't decide which of my many books and magazines I will want to read.

Re:You must be confused (1)

jgtg32a (1173373) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346279)

The battery life of an ereader is great, I read constantly and it will last a week, plug it in over night and it's g2g the next day

Re:You must be confused (2, Funny)

msuarezalvarez (667058) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346471)

"g2g"? *sigh*

Re:You must be confused (1)

Ragzouken (943900) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346841)

-_-

You must be confused (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26346657)

I'll type this reply really slowly, to make sure you can understand.

Magazines shouldn't need batteries.

Re:You must be confused (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26347075)

Thanks, Obvious Troll! You plum done convinced me that them thar new-fangledmabobbies that need to keep on gettin' recharged and all is so much better and durable than them mag-a-zines I can just pick up and read without having to make sure the durn battery's charged! I reckon there's also some reason you cityfolk love the horrendous refresh rate and the fucking microscopic screens on which you can't stick nearly as much data without tedious scrolling and reloading of pages as compared to a single magazine page, you tiny, stupid, blindly devoted technophile which us primitives out here in the boondocks can't figure out! Thankee kindly for settin' us straight!

Re:Missing Options (1)

interval1066 (668936) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346343)

Please, lets face the future boldy, and let go of the past. Its time to think seriously about getting rid of paper for things like magazines. Yes, its not going to be as convenient. Never the less; its time. If the online journals offer an option for off-line reading, that will help out a lot I think.

Re:Missing Options (1)

Ngarrang (1023425) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346565)

Magazines shouldn't need batteries

Information shouldn't kill trees. While I don't claim to be very green, I see this as a good next step. The publishing industry will survive, they just need to stop fighting the changing face of the reader and work with the flow. I seem to remember Hollywood boo-hooing how the VCR would destroy them.

Re:Missing Options (1)

click2005 (921437) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346949)

I seem to remember Hollywood boo-hooing how the VCR would destroy them.

Very Crap Remakes?

Re:Missing Options (4, Interesting)

gnick (1211984) | more than 5 years ago | (#26347087)

What's so bad about paper? Most of our paper comes from trees in managed timberlands, which are currently replanting twice as fast [tappi.org] as they're harvesting (at least in the U.S.) And much of it comes from tree farms [wikipedia.org] , which are wonderfully eco-friendly. We use a helluva lot of paper, but it's not beyond sustainable levels yet and it's wonderfully convenient. And paper's a renewable and easily recyclable resource, unlike the materials used in e-readers.

Does somebody more eco-wise want to set me straight and explain why an e-reader is so much "greener" than dead trees?

Re:Missing Options (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346789)

If you'd rather kill trees than use batteries, there's a way for you to do that.

The iPoo (4, Funny)

goombah99 (560566) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345481)

The thing about all the readers is that I simply would not use one in the bathroom for a lot of sound reasons I'm sure you can imagine.

But it seems like one could create a bathroom reader that would be welcome.

Scrap the Kindle and come up with the iPoo.

What I want is a reader that is bathroom and bathub friendly. Also one I could take outdoors and not worry about it getting rained on or something if I happen to leave it out on the deck by accident.

Re:The iPoo (2, Funny)

goombah99 (560566) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345571)

Thinking a bit more about this there is a feature that makes newspapers and magazines so bathroom freindly that will be hard to recreate on a reader.

Namley, parallel accessibility. When I sit on my thrown I don't go there to read a specific article. I browse the magazine for something that look intriguing. It's hard to manage that sort of page flipping and scanning on a reader. But it's essential to the use mode.

Re:The iPoo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26346081)

Thinking a bit more about this there is a feature that makes newspapers and magazines so bathroom freindly that will be hard to recreate on a reader.

Venturing into TMI territory:

The bathroom at work attracts a mix of tech magazine, like DDJ, Wired, 2600, and others. There's a lot to be said for having a variety of reading material available in a format that 1) no one wants to steal, and 2) is essentially disposable.

Re:The iPoo (1)

Orange Crush (934731) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346091)

Fortunately, there are devices that will let you do just that. [google.com]

Re:The iPoo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26345735)

You mean this?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ph79vPIiWbM

Re:The iPoo (3, Informative)

kv9 (697238) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346417)

The thing about all the readers is that I simply would not use one in the bathroom for a lot of sound reasons I'm sure you can imagine.

I actually can't. I have a friend that's always in the can with his laptop. a reader should be a no brainer.

Re:The iPoo (1)

El Torico (732160) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346501)

But it seems like one could create a bathroom reader that would be welcome.

Of course it will only be used for reading technical magazines, especially the wall mounted model.

Re:The iPoo (4, Interesting)

gnick (1211984) | more than 5 years ago | (#26347261)

What I want is a reader that is bathroom and bathub friendly. Also one I could take outdoors and not worry about it getting rained on or something if I happen to leave it out on the deck by accident.

Actually Amazon sells transparent covers for the Kindle [amazon.com] that make it fairly impervious to rain, spills, tub accidents, etc. And, if you're worried about a bathroom disaster, they're priced low enough that they can be treated as disposable (I've actually thrown more than one away myself.)

Why one of these isn't bundled when you purchase a Kindle, I have no idea.

Re:Missing Options (1)

stg (43177) | more than 5 years ago | (#26347311)

Not to mention devices you may already have, such as your cell phone. I read e-books all the time on my N95, and while the screen size isn't great (and is really not practical for most technical material/magazines), I've read dozens of books on it. And since I carry it most of the time, I can read anywhere I have to stop and wait for a few minutes.

Well then (5, Informative)

geekoid (135745) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345463)

just print it out.

Re:Well then (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26346715)

Until it starts getting weighed down with DRM and custom proprietary reader software which makes it difficult and inconvenient (though not impossible) to print.

come on! (1)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345473)

To those of us who enjoy reading such stuff away from the computer

eBook readers? smart phones? netbooks? I mean, come on, people! If you're in to tech you surely know there are alternatives to big, clunky desktop computers and dead trees.

Re:come on! (2, Interesting)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346023)

Some of us just love PAPER. I read Doctorow's Little Brother online, but I'm buying the paper version.

I used to be an avid reader of both Dr. Dobbs and PC Mag, but that was when personal computing was fairly new and the magazine racks in the grocery stores were full of computer magazines. Now all the magazines in the stores are women's fluff rags; People, Home and Graden, ladies Home Journal. Odd since I see as many men as women in the store, and women these days are into much the same things as men.

PC Mag started sucking, too. Dr. Dobbs never did, but I could no longer find copies.

My daughter bought me hardcover books for Christmas. I'll hate to see the day when they're obsolete, but then again I might not live that long (I figure I've got between one day and forty years left).

Re:come on! (1)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346783)

eBook readers? smart phones? netbooks? I mean, come on, people! If you're in to tech you surely know there are alternatives to big, clunky desktop computers and dead trees.

And if you're into technology you should also surely know that none of these devices should ever be taken into The John!

not surprised (4, Insightful)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345487)

When I got my January copy it was in a plastic bag with a brochure for sd west. The brochure was thicker than the magazine. I almost tossed the magazine and kept the brochure. So much has been cut back over the years. I will miss the bug of the month [gimpel.com] . It was an ad but it was fun. Maybe they'll still have it on the web version.

Re:not surprised (1, Interesting)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346579)

That's what got me to drop my subscription to PC Gamer. I'd subscribed for five years, and it was well worth the money. A big fat magazine loaded with info, and a CD of game demos. Then some bastard capitalists bought it out, fired all the good writers, made the page size smaller, dropped the number of pages from 400-500 a month down to maybe 150, most of which were ads.

IMO those greedy capitalists are incredibly stupid, killing the goose that layed the golden egg. Actually I think that's what went wrong with the world's economy, the capitalists got too damned greedy.

Re:not surprised (1)

Anonymous Meoward (665631) | more than 5 years ago | (#26347113)

Me neither. I noticed the quality of the paper was starting to deteriorate over time. It became thinner, not as glossy, though not quite as bad as the stock used for US phone books.

Couple that with the decreasing thickness, and it was plain to see that the writing was on the wall (or, more accurately, on the screen) for DDJ.

Journalists (4, Interesting)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345511)

To those of us who enjoy reading such stuff away from the computer these are bad news, as there seems to be no other major technical programmers' magazines left standing.

Tell me about it. I've professionally written some articles in the past, and it seems like there's almost nothing left to write for anymore. Either the magazine is so specific so as to be little more than an advertisement (e.g. Oracle or DB2 magazine) or the magazine doesn't pay (in any meaningful sense of the term) for articles. (e.g. Java Developers Journal) Time will tell if web-based publications will manage to support the same eco-system of authors or if it's time to go write a book.

Probably just time to write a book. ;-)

Re:Journalists (3, Funny)

JagRoth (115052) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345675)

Probably just time to write a book. ;-)

What are these "books" that you speak of? And can I get an RSS feed of it when it's done?

Re:Journalists (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26346995)

Probably just time to write a book. ;-)

The canonical Web 2.0 response would be to create your own programming website, with your own personal slant and some advertising to pay the bills.

One of my old favorites was FlipCode [flipcode.com] (since discontinued), which seemed to have moderately significant following.

DDJ, Byte, and Microcornacopia where great. (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345515)

They where wonderful back in the day. DDJ is down to like 5 pages. The rest are long gone. Back in the day those where the best way to learn about computers. Now we have the Internet. I find it so interesting that so many computer magazines have survived.

Re:DDJ, Byte, and Microcornacopia where great. (1)

Nasarius (593729) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345653)

I liked CUJ (C/C++ Users Journal), which got absorbed by DDJ a couple years ago. For people serious about improving their craft, the Internet is generally a lousy substitute. At least there are still books, for subjects large enough to warrant one.

2600 (5, Insightful)

VirtBlue (1233488) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345517)

2600 is still in print form.

Re:2600 (1)

abigor (540274) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345885)

That's not really a programmer's magazine, and certainly not in the same league as DDJ.

Re:2600 (1)

mr_mischief (456295) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345913)

I see someone modded you funny, but IME 2600 has been just as informative and educational as DDJ if not more so. Including PC Magazine as a professional developer's magazine in the summary is what should be modded "funny".

Re:2600 (2, Informative)

Evets (629327) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346883)

Agreed. There's always at least one article in 2600 that makes me happy I picked it up.

PC Magazine turned into a big ad years ago. At least Computer Shopper is straight forward about it.

Re:2600 (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346249)

Yeah, but they stopped putting the phone hack whistles in Captain Crunch =(

Damn damn damn (3, Interesting)

wiredog (43288) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345519)

Not surprised, the last issue was very thin, but still. First Byte (I still miss Byte, see this 10 year old issue [byte.com] for why.), then PC Mag, now DDJ. Ah well, another subscription to not renew.

At least Linux Journal is still a Real Magazine.

Re:Damn damn damn (1)

Just Some Guy (3352) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346195)

I still miss Byte, see this 10 year old issue for why.

I can't tell if you're being sarcastic, because when I read stuff like:

Exceptions are run-time errors or interrupts that force a CPU to suspend normal program execution. (Java is a special case: The Java virtual machine [VM] checks for some run-time errors in software and can throw an exception without involving the hardware CPU.) For example, if a program tries to open a nonexistent data file, the CPU returns an exception that means "File not found." If the program's error-trapping code is poor or absent, the program gets confused.

... I want to choke the author, who's probably now a tech consultant for "CSI [youtube.com] ".

Probably for the best. Consider what ACM does (1)

MarkWatson (189759) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345559)

The ACM Queue journals and Communications of the ACM are released as PDFs - very useful when searching my MacBook files for research or reading material. I especially like the way I get a paper version of Communications of the ACM to read (mostly cover to cover) and then I permanently keep the (searchable) PDF version.

Dr. Dobb's Journal has become a very thin magazine and for the type of content I think that a web based only presense will hopefully work well for them.

Seriously, dude... (1)

Khan (19367) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345561)

....just use your iPhone while you're on the can to read it. Isn't that why they upgraded it to 3G?

Re:Seriously, dude... (4, Funny)

Farmer Tim (530755) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346031)

....just use your iPhone while you're on the can to read it.

Sure, that's possible, but what good is an iPhone if you run out of toilet paper? 3G won't help you there.

Re:Seriously, dude... (1)

Khan (19367) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346487)

True. I suppose you can use your hand in those situations...or the iPhone. Perhaps someone can create a small TP printer and application so that if you ever do run out, you can always use your iPhone to make more. Now THAT would be really handy :-)

Re:Seriously, dude... (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346597)

Sure, that's possible, but what good is an iPhone if you run out of toilet paper? 3G won't help you there.

Well, there is always iFart....

RSS (1)

mknewman (557587) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345587)

Most of these journals have RSS feeds. Get a good offline reader that will download the entire articles and you will be set.

Word to the wise (0, Troll)

djupedal (584558) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345593)

> "To those of us who enjoy reading such stuff away from the computer these are bad news, as there seems to be no other major technical programmers' magazines left standing"

Take this as a hint to broaden your horizons - some would say...get a life :)

Re:Word to the wise (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#26347269)

Take this as a hint to broaden your horizons - some would say...get a life :)

Anyone who's read my NSFW journals knows that isn't always a good idea.

Print is expensive (3, Interesting)

mgkimsal2 (200677) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345607)

Capt Obvious here. :)

I recently started http://groovymag.com as a PDF-only publication, and have had interest from people in print versions. At the small numbers we're at, it's probably about an extra $5 per copy just to cover print and postage, which I don't think most people are willing to pay that right now, though maybe I'll be proven wrong.

We're in a niche market, so we don't rely on advertising, and have no plans to do so. I suspect we may see more products forgoing the advertising model altogether, and focusing on providing value for 'micropayments' - $2-$4/month for access to content. I think the 'micro' in micropayments has traditionally had people thinking about "2 cents per page view" sort of thing, but that's never proven feasible.

What might arise from this downturn in advertising-driven publications are content networks of like minded publications that offer access to content from all sites for a set fee. Aren't there some industries that already do this (ahem - adult?)

Re:Print is expensive (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345849)

Yes, but the content of all the sites have to ahve some value that makes them worth paying for.
A market not available for free elsewhere.

I don't see anything at grovymag I can't find for free somewhere else.

Add to that it's a general magazine, I ahve no idea how many issues a year will be on interest, si I'm not likely to buy a subscription uless you have a proven history.

On another issue, you don't seem so niche that advertising won't work. Why do you come to that conclusion? I'm sure there is a good reason, I'm just curious.

I wish you the best of luck.

Re:Print is expensive (1)

mgkimsal2 (200677) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346677)

It's somewhat chicken and egg - you don't really know the content in the magazines cause you don't see it until you buy it.

There's not enough stuff out there that's targeted at groovy users specifically. This is not saying that we don't ever run ads. We've got one (for training) and another one for next month. The goal is not to *rely* on advertising though. That's the distinction I was trying to make.

Sure you can find *most* information on the internet for free. The value add here is, ideally, a mix of timely content that's picked, edited (working on improving that every issue), and presented with other related/relevant information. Exposure to new writers that you might not have heard of before is a nice side benefit.

To bastardize a Linux phrase - the information is only free elsewhere if you don't value your time. You need to spend time going out and finding what's valuable. The assumed value we're providing is that we're doing some degree of judgement and filtering so you don't have to spend as much time doing so.

Other chicken and egg is that people may not subscribe for a year if they don't think we'll be around, but it's hard to guarantee you'll be around if people don't subscribe. This is issue #3, and we don't have any indication of going away, precisely because we're not reliant on ad revenue, and approaching this as something that people have to pay for. Witness a recent Ruby magazine endeavor - one issue ($8 print or $3 pdf) in August, then nothing. Or the 'jquery javascript magazine' project from 2 years ago - one issue, then nothing. I think the jquery one aimed to be free with ads, and that just petered out.

Time will tell if enough people are willing to be paying for some level of "custom" Groovy content on a monthly basis. Early indications seem to say yes.

Thanks for the well wishes.

Re:Print is expensive (1)

zappepcs (820751) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345883)

I'd go for a subscription if it gave me access to online/digital content from my choice of x magazines. A common format, easy to search, with cross references between them. Of course RSS feeds too. I would especially enjoy a mix of computer/programming/electronics information like this. On paper it just isn't possible to get the features I want, but electronically? Very cool and worth subscribing to.

You know who I am? I'm the guy at the table near the end of the bar, having a beer and reading PDFs of print magazines till my battery dies and then I go home. Happy hour is called happy for a reason. I like to see some example code in a magazine and try it out, right there if it interests me. I like ads that have URLs in them. I like things that I can search and cross reference. If reading an article has a hint in it and I suddenly want to see the functional diagram and pinout of a power management chip for battery backed CMOS RAM to see if it would wedge into a circuit backwards for battery backup functions elsewhere, well... damnit, it's nice to have links and just clickity click. I like near-instant information from greatly disparate sources, collated, indexed, and ready for consumption. I also like to use the save button, the cut-n-paste functions, and the 'lets email this to fred' button.

Print magazines never gave me that... I'm not sad to see them go, and will pay for good online/downloadable content.

Re:Print is expensive (1)

mgkimsal2 (200677) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346731)

Exactly. Other PDF mags do it, as does GroovyMag. No DRM, indexable searchable PDF bundled with relevant code examples ready to cut/paste or run in some cases. There's so many opportunities in electronic publishing that go above and beyond the traditional print model.

However, some people still like print. I believe people that want print will be forced in to paying an ever-increasing premium for that luxury in the coming years.

Dear Slashdot.: +1, Helpful (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26345641)

  Dr. Dobbs going Web-Only: Truly DOGmatic [youtube.com] .

Yours In Socialism,
Kilgore Trout

ereader (1)

xenolion (1371363) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345655)

Well it looks like I have something new to put on my Sony E-Reader, that thing is finally paying for its self, just needs a few more tweaks to the pdf view.

This is horrible! (1)

kolbe (320366) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345683)

What am I going to read now when I go to the men's room and don't have wifi access on my phone?

Honestly though, DDJ was a wonderful print publication and was perhaps my first regular read for many years. I wish them luck in their online endeavors.

Re:This is horrible! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26345845)

you could read the grafiti on the walls. That's how your parents met.

Re:This is horrible! (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346233)

What am I going to read now when I go to the men's room and don't have wifi access on my phone?

The copy that you downloaded using an RSS reader, I assume.

Re:This is horrible! (1)

petes_PoV (912422) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346301)

just buy a printer!

cellphone in next stall is bad enough (1)

peter303 (12292) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346897)

Now I'll have to listen to typing too!

Does anyone flush a few extra times to try to embarrass the cell phone yakker?

Different strokes (1)

joeyblades (785896) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345693)

Personally, I prefer on-line versions. With hyper-links and video, the content can be greatly enriched. Plus none of those pesky issues with storing old magazines, or recycling, or worse, land-fill.

Re:Different strokes (3, Interesting)

D Ninja (825055) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345797)

Personally, I prefer on-line versions. With hyper-links and video, the content can be greatly enriched.

While I tend to agree with you, there is something nice about holding printed material in your hand and reading that instead of being in front of a screen. I can't really put my finger on it, though...but it's difficult to "curl up with a good computer."

Plus none of those pesky issues with storing old magazines, or recycling, or worse, land-fill.

Definitely correct here. However, this assumes that their magazine can be downloaded (PDF?) or that they store it to their site for a long amount of time.

Re:Different strokes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26346237)

If you want to hold something in your hands, I have this wonderful device to sell you. Using nothing more than toner cartridges and blank pieces of white paper you can, in the comfort of your OWN home, create your own printed version.

Reminds me of a Comic (3, Funny)

pgn674 (995941) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345761)

This news reminds me of a recent, funny, and relevant strip from the comic Sheldon: http://www.sheldoncomics.com/archive/081229.html [sheldoncomics.com]

Re:Reminds me of a Comic (1)

SargentDU (1161355) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346627)

Now that was pertinent!:) Good laugh and to the point.

Computer Magazine? (1)

SydShamino (547793) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345853)

there seems to be no other major technical programmers' magazines

Doesn't Computer [computer.org] qualify as a major technical programmers' magazine? It is the official publication of the official software engineering society...

(It certainly doesn't include enough hardware articles to keep me interested, so I assume it fascinates hard-core technical programmers.)

PC Magazine... (2, Insightful)

Monkey_Genius (669908) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345881)

Never really was a "major technical programmers' magazine". It was simply a rag filled with useless advertisements and a forum for John C. Dvorak to spout his nonsense. I stopped reading it ten years ago when it became irrelevant.

maybe not "major" but... (2, Interesting)

DreadfulGrape (398188) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345907)

MacTech journal has been in continuous print publication since 1984.

Professional Society Magazines (1)

JewFish (315210) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345925)

"as there seems to be no other major technical programmers' magazines left standing."

You might be interested in checking out the periodicals published by the IEEE and ACM professional societies.

IEEE Computer [computer.org]
IEEE Software [computer.org]
Communications of the ACM [acm.org]

PC Magazine? (2, Interesting)

xdroop (4039) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345961)

I have to admit my first thought was: when the hell did PC Magazine become a technical programmer's magazine?

Subgenius Prescriptions (2, Funny)

polyomninym (648843) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345983)

At least we can still read the good word from Bob.

hrmf (1)

Sase (311326) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345985)

Might as well give up now, and just stop reading.

Direct Link to Current Issue and PDF (1)

bcolflesh (710514) | more than 5 years ago | (#26345989)

Re:Direct Link to Current Issue and PDF (1)

PCM2 (4486) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346283)

Actually, no. This [nxtbook.com] is the current issue.

Or you could always go to ddj.com.

Re:Direct Link to Current Issue and PDF (1)

bcolflesh (710514) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346333)

Thanks for the correction!

I really don't understand their digital format (1)

twistah (194990) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346017)

Is Dr. Dobb's going to the same digital format as PC Mag? Here's a free trial [zinio.com] , which shows you the last issue of PC Mag. I understand the idea is to placate current subscribers, because keeping it in the same format makes the change less severe. I know I get used to consistent magazines layouts, so this makes sense. But I don't know about the implementation; it feels like a zoomed out PDF to me. And if you want to zoom in, you have to go to 200% -- there is nothing in between. That doesn't feel natural to me and in fact, I find it next to impossible to read. Anyone actually like this format?

Re:I really don't understand their digital format (1)

bcolflesh (710514) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346175)

Dr. Dobb's uses the Nxtbook [nxtbook.com] format - a competitor of Zinio.

I was a Byte subscriber (1)

VorlonFog (948943) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346041)

I gave up on print media after my Byte subscription was terminated with the end of their print edition. Bah! Humbug!

Re:I was a Byte subscriber (1)

ishmalius (153450) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346105)

I quit reading Byte when it changed from a resource for tech info to a shopping guide.

Re:I was a Byte subscriber (2, Informative)

British (51765) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346277)

I swear Byte magazine was 70% ads, 30% content. You had 5-6 pages of ads in the middle of articles. I wouldn't be surprised if they just forgot the last part of the article, and continued on with the ads. At least with "Computer Shopper" you were expecting ads. Sadly, PC Magazine was useless to the common user unless you were looking to upgrade. Buy Buy buy buy buy. I miss the magazines that had type-in programs.

I'm Sorry, but Good Riddance (1, Interesting)

Obiwan Kenobi (32807) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346071)

"To those of us who enjoy reading such stuff away from the computer these are bad news, as there seems to be no other major technical programmers' magazines left standing."

This is another nostalgia-stuffed feel-good statement I see burrowed into our news stories from time to time as we shed the old and embrace the new. Me? I just don't give a damn. Let them die. I haven't purchased a magazine outside of an airport in this millennium and I don't know anyone else who has, either. There isn't one thing a magazine could tell me that I haven't read (and probably re-re-read) many times over.

Today we have our laptops, Kindles, RSS feeds, incredible PDAs, hell, my cell phone does more than first computer ever could, ten times over.

We don't need dead trees to get our information any longer. Call it the green economy shedding the skin of old media, call it putting the ole girl out to pasture, call it shooting an unneeded service in the face, whatever.

Just please don't give me this nostalgic wasn't-it-great-back-then crap about how you used to be so excited for the new issue to come in the mail. Rather, be excited about seeing your RSS feed updated. Shift your focus, enjoy your nostalgia, but put it into perspective.

Re:I'm Sorry, but Good Riddance (4, Insightful)

VJ42 (860241) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346447)

Paper's going nowhere fast. We'll still use it for archival purposes, will your RSS feeds, PDAs and Kindles last a thousand years? Paper originals of the Magna Carta [wikipedia.org] still exist today. If it had been written in an early .doc format I would already have trouble reading it, I can go to the British library [www.bl.uk] to read a copy of the Magna Carta written in 1215.

Re:I'm Sorry, but Good Riddance (4, Insightful)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 5 years ago | (#26347317)

Good in theory. But...

Today we have our laptops, Kindles, RSS feeds, incredible PDAs, hell, my cell phone does more than first computer ever could, ten times over.

I used to read books and magazines on my Palm tungsten. Then I switched to blackberry, and I have nearly $1000 in ebooks that I can't read. At all. Why would people want to run that risk? The capabilities are there, but after /years/ of ebook publishing there's still no standard that will ensure this can't happen. Print media can always be read, no matter what platform you're using.

Of course, there's a much more practical concern: after 12-16 hours, I want to /stop/ looking at a monitor for a while.

Just please don't give me this nostalgic wasn't-it-great-back-then crap about how you used to be so excited for the new issue to come in the mail. Rather, be excited about seeing your RSS feed updated. Shift your focus, enjoy your nostalgia, but put it into perspective.

Nostalgia is longing for something past for its own sake. In this case, there's a measurable difference in quality. I can count on one hand the number of web sites that deliver the kind of quality technical information that DDJ and CUJ used to provide.

And among those web sites, it's still a challenge to find the valid, useful information hidden amidst blog entries where folks will hold forth on topics they know little to nothing about.

I haven't purchased a magazine outside of an airport in this millennium and I don't know anyone else who has, either. There isn't one thing a magazine could tell me that I haven't read (and probably re-re-read) many times over.

In other words, "I don't use this, and therefore nobody else does either"?

Hmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26346073)

To those of us who enjoy reading such stuff away from the computer these are bad news, as there seems to be no other major technical programmers' magazines left standing.

Well, who do we have to blame for this situation where computers have replaced paper media? Ironically, it's those same technical programmers. They're just reaping the fruit of their labors!

c't has always been wonderful (2, Informative)

ishmalius (153450) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346183)

If you can't read German yet, then maybe it's time to learn. This has always been one of the best computer magazines in print. It's in-depth and hands-on. I built one of their hardware projects once (an SBC). Possibly still have it. http://www.heise.de/ct/ [heise.de]

Curious (1)

SGDarkKnight (253157) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346239)

I was taking a boo through the PC Mag. article, it dosn't mention anything about the subscription price. In their "subscribe" page, it states $0.62 per digital copy (24 issue subscription). Anyone know what the old price for the hard copy was? I curious how many new subscribers they will need to obtain inorder to maintain their overhead costs... There was also a link to get a free trial subscription if you like. I wonder how long they will keep that link up for the free trial edition. Also, they only require an email address if you want to download a copy of the trial edition, whats to stop people from creating multiple email addresses, i guess it will just come down to how long they decide to offer the free trial.

They still print that? (1)

CrazyTalk (662055) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346551)

I haven't seen Dr. Dobbs on the shelf in probably over a year - and that includes the bookstores in Redmond.

Bittersweet (2, Interesting)

digitalhermit (113459) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346691)

I've been reading Dr. Dobbs for a few years.. Same with Linux Journal, Linux Magazine, SysAdmin magazine. Though I enjoy thumbing through the magazine while I'm - uhh - busy, keeping the back issues is a pain. They're not easily searchable, take up a lot of space, are not cut/paste friendly, etc..

The era of the print computer magazine is in its last throes. I raise a glass to Compute!, Antic, Byte, SysAdmin, and all the others that entertained me through the years.

Sad. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26346827)

What will I read when taking a dump now?

Nobody likes to look at stroke books (pr0n) while taking a crap.

no other major technical... (1)

ShatteredArm (1123533) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346899)

CoDe

(Sorry, couldn't resist)

Now what... (1)

kerashi (917149) | more than 5 years ago | (#26346927)

am I going to read while stuck on the toilet? Maybe it's time to install a computer in there, and hope the cat doesn't knock the mouse into the water....

On a related note, I fortunately still have a few copies of a certain Scientology magazine squirreled away in case I run out of toilet paper...

Great: Paper Industry Bailout? (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 5 years ago | (#26347019)

Yet Another Bailout (YAB)?

Well, I hope that the paper industry executives have the common sense to fly to Washington, DC in paper planes, instead of corporate jets.

Beurk. (1)

panda (10044) | more than 5 years ago | (#26347199)

If they are going web-only at DDJ, they seriously need to do something about their site design. It is atrociously ugly and horribly inconvenient.

typewritten 'zine in the 1970s (1)

peter303 (12292) | more than 5 years ago | (#26347287)

I recall the Stanford Math library betting Dr. Dobbs. in the late 1970s. It was more like a newspaper, or a "zine" what self-published magazines were called then. It was loosely associated the the homebrew computing clubs popping up in places.

Wow, horrible site. (1)

slashkitty (21637) | more than 5 years ago | (#26347357)

I used to like the mag, but this site is just plain awful. It's hard to find an article or anything, and it has autostart video. yuck. Can someone please hit them with a clue stick?
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