I subscribe to or regularly purchase a large variety of magazines, in a wide range of subject matter, from the general interest/newsmagazines to specialty publications like 20/20 (optical trade) and Military History. If I had to get rid of them all & keep only one, I would keep Discover (although Smithsonian would be a close second).
This magazine covers a wide range of science related articles in each issue in a lightweight, easy to understand manner. It is good light reading for people interested in science who are not scientists. It is also a good magazine for expanding your interests; the wide variety of not-in-depth articles can lead you to discover new interests & topics you might wish to learn more about. Over the years, several articles in Discover have led to to more in-depth reading in various areas I would not otherwise have been interested in, and expanding both your horizons & your knowledge base is always a positive thing.
I always read each issue cover to cover, since even the articles on subjects I know little about/care to know little about are short enough that I don't lose interest in them.
I would recommend this magazine to anyone who has in interest in the sciences who is over about the age of 12, who is not themselves a scientist, as the articles can sometimes be a tad simplistic for those with in-depth knowledge. I would also recommend it highly to those people who say, "The only TV I ever watch are the documentaries", as you can learn a little bit about alot of things with this magazine, and thereby help to discover where your true interests lie.
The first photographs were made of asphalt.
That's just one of the many things I have learned from Discover, and it is just one of the many reasons the magazine is the one to which I look forward most each month. The magazine's writers present their information clearly. And they cover a broad range of subjects, shedding light on everything from who we are (biology) to who we were (anthropology), from where we've been (archaeology) to where we will be (astrophysics).
And although the magazine is dedicated to chronicling what humans know, its writers are quick to point out the limits of our knowledge and to present theories that are at odds with the dominant thinking. This gives insight into the ideas that might become the next dominant ones.
Other things I know because of Discover:
Mothers of people who like salty foods are likely to have had severe morning sickness, which disrupted the chemical balances in utero and shaped their babies' tastes for life.
A serious lack of vitamin B can rob you of the ability to stand upright.
Respected physicists believe there might not be any such thing as time, and they're trying to prove it. Some even believe that space might not exist the way we think it does.
Some parasites can control their hosts' behavior.
NutraSweet was discovered accidentally during research to cure ulcers.
Plastic diapers might be the cause of rising rates of testicular cancer and infertility. Disposable diapers raise the temperature of the skin they touch, which can impair the development of infants' testicles.
On Neptune, the unique environment can create rainstorms of diamonds.
Glass is surprisingly difficult for physicists to understand.
A fossil suggesting dinosaurs were warm-blooded might be a dino heart. Or it might just be a rock.
The Big Bang Theory might prove the existence of God. Or it might disprove it.
Rice thrown at weddings is not bad for birds.
And I know that I know a lot more about the sciences than I would without Discover.
I have interested in science for most of my life. Unfortunately, for most of my life so far, I haven't been able to read a whole lot about new findings and advancements because the technical jargon was too much for me. Imagine a 13 year old trying to read something from Scientific Frontiers. Well, it was about that time that I began reading Discover.
Discover writes articles that just about anybody can read. They are informative, accurate, interesting, and put into Layman's terms. I have been subscribing to Discover for about five years and I have yet to get an issue that I didn't read cover to cover and not enjoy. Each issue is packed with tons of picture and articles.
In the beginning of the magazine, there is a section called Research and Development. It has about twenty small articles on what new things scientists have found or invented. I love reading these because they are quick, to the point, and very interesting. The rest of the magazine usually has longer articles about space, medicine, geology, or just about anything else involved with science.
I encourage anyone how is interested in science to check out Discover. It helped me learn more about the world of science and technology when I was pretty young and I'm sure it will help anyone else who reads Discover.
I have been a faithful reader of this magazine since I was twelve and now, at 20, still get it every month. The magazine is full of information and fascinating articles. It is so full of content that you can practically see it spilling out of the pages while it sits on the shelf. The content itself is a colourful variety of information ranging to high-tech science, to animals, to historical facts. It is all well laid out and easy to understand (even for a twelve year old). The photographs are crisp and bright, as well.
The magazine and it's contents inspire you to learn and you will come away from reading an issue knowing things you might have not known otherwise. Very good for anyone with any interest in fascinating sciences or technology, or anyone with teens in the house. What a wonderful way to get kids to learn and read! I don't plan to ever kill my subscription. :)
Even if your not science minded this magazine will help you understand the world around you. Why the earth is growing; why it's destroying itself; the impact we have on the earth; what is being invented and anything to that is even remotely related to science has been or will be published in this magazine.
I have subscribed to this magazine since I was about 15 years old. Like they say you never stop learning and I think that you shouldn't even try to slow down. Discover has taught me so much about what is going on around me and what is constantly changing. I used to read Discover while I was in school and then go to class and work what I learned into the conversation. My classmates and teachers alike were impressed what I was learning and so fast.
Now that I have to kids growing up I am glad that I kept all the back issues for them to read. Discover isn't a magazine that teaches you how to do things, it teaches you how things are done, why and who does them. It teaches you about the future as well as the past and present. It doesn't teach you how to cheat at video games but teaches you about how there made. Discover doesn't teach you how to hunt deer but it shows you how the deer reacts to it's environment with you in it and how it senses you. this magazine is excellent for anybody that loves to learn and no matter what you like to learn about you will find something in this magazine in for you.
I have always loved science and science fiction but how I discovered Discover magazine was through blind luck. Actually my legal assistant thought it would be a good magazine for the office and so she subscribed last summer (2000). It was love at first sight for me.
The magazine features in-depth articles about all branches of science and also has interesting features such as brain teasers, reviews, and research and development. The articles are intelligently written and well illustrated but you don't have to be an Einstein to understand the content.
One recent article (cover story, Nov. 2000) is typical of the fascinating material in this magazine. The article is entitled "From Here to Eternity" and discusses physicist Julian Barbour's quantum physics theory that time plays no role in our universe. Barbour theorizes that time, per se, does not exist and that instead of one universe, there are many multiverses.
The article astounded me but I cannot say that I truly understood the theory nor that I agree with it. At the same time I read this article, I was reading Michael Crichton's Timeline which uses this theory in an enjoyable way.
Discover is not the only science magazine but it is a welcome addition to National Geographic, Smithsonian and Popular Science. They are all excellent magazines but there is certainly room for excellence in searching the universe of science.
I have been a subscriber to Discover magazine for, oh, longer than I can remember. I believe it's been eight years--well, ever since Omni went belly-up and converted its followers to a Discover subscription until their pre-paid number of Omni had been fulfilled by the substitute. I had been disappointed at first and missed features of Omni such as the sci/fi short stories it included. But, I soon became pleasantly surprised with Discover, and then hooked.
I've watched Discover change its format several times over the years, but I've found they always keep with the same principles: easy to understand articles on a variety of topics. I have read some of the reviews on Discover and have found that people have ranging views on this from wanting more technical jargon to those who feel Discover actually really only centers on two or three topics. Personally, as an aerospace engineer who subscribes to more field related magazines such as Aerospace America, I find it refreshing to sit with a magazine and relax rather than trying to twist my brain around some complex cosmic dilemma. As for centering on a few areas, well, any magazine is going to run to the hot topics and, let's face it, technology is where it's at. But, then again, they cover a wide range of topics from your home computer to micro-robots and lasers (there's even a special section called Future Tech).
Let me take you through a little tour of the magazine so that you might better understand why it has something for everyone (I'm looking at the June 2000 issue as I write). The magazine always starts with a section called R&D. These are short, two to three paragraph, articles that provide a little information about everything and anything. This section is especially good for the reader who hates long articles and prefers the story short and sweet. Here there are articles about an eel spoiling restoration of Florida's Everglades, how carbon molecules (called buckyballs) show what the solar system was like billions of years ago, how fossilized burrows show how ancient mammals lived or whether plants have a body temperature, as animals do--just to name a few! Then we pass Future Tech and--The Physics of...Guitars? An article about acoustics and how to change the sound of one if no two are supposed to sound alike. Vital Signs comes next, discussing biology and health issues. Then we have Sky Lights, so those astronomers out there know where to look in the coming months. Finally we come to the major stories: The Best Clocks in the World (a clock that uses lasers?), Wolves at the Door-Can We Learn to Dance With Wild Things Again? (what is the fate of wolves in Yellowstone?), The Girl Who Loved Math (self-explanatory), Why Has Our Weather Gone Wild? (is global warming going to bring us more devastating weather in the future?), Romancing the Bone (what an amateur fossil hunter found). Finally, we come to the Reviews of games and books along with the answers to this issues Bogglers (IQ type testers) and Math Olympics along with next months challenges. Try the Brainworks experiments in the back--you may be surprised at what you find.
Perhaps these were not all the types of articles your interested in...ie; not enough on space, archeology or paleontology. But, in the spirit of catering to everyone, wait till the next issue, I'm sure you can find something you like. Two of my personal favorites were the stories of the wonderfully preserved mummies found in peat bogs and the fate of the wooly mammoth, both its extinction and the expedition to recover a full body.
I hope I have shown that this is, what I consider, a good all around magazine. The people I know who enjoy it range from my ??-year-old mother (saleswoman) who knows little about science to my 12-year-old little cousin who's mind is exposed to many areas of study that will help him choose a career in the future.
Discover is one of my favorite magazines. The articles are always interesting and relevant and are written in a way that even a non-scientific, but otherwise interested person such as myself can understand. It's clearly laid out and very well written. The photography and diagrams are usually top notch also. The current issue is a great example of why this magazine is interesting. It covers everything from newly discovered planets to recreating the ancient Egyptian mummification process to dolphins to information on new headache research, which was especially useful for a migraine sufferer like me. It has a great brain teaser section in the back, which I usually don't have time to think over, but is always interesting. If you subscribe to this magazine you are almost guaranteed to learn at least one new thing with each issue.
I have been a subscriber of "Discover" magazine for over 5 years now and have enjoyed every word of every edition.
From the oldest of discoveries being reviewed or rediscovered to the most recent technological advances, "Discover" has covered the subject quite thoroughly.
The only disadvantage or "con" that may be brought up, in my opinion, is that an article may use words or subject matter that an average person may not understand unless they are educated on the subject matter involved.
I highly recommend this magazine not only to keep up-to-date on the latest advances in science, but to also rediscover areas of the past and look at them in a different light.
Discover magazine is great for nearly anyone interested in learning, from the student to the enthusiast. Discover covers a wide variety of subjects and gives in depth information without using such highly scientific terms that the average reader gets lost. I have read quite a few science magazines and many of them simply get too technical and thus lose the interest of the students who don't want that type of information. Discover will not do this to you.
Discover will capture your attention with it's well thought laid out and well written articles. The articles are always well supported by the brilliant photographs done by the excellent photographers Discover employs. One of the issues I used for a term paper in college I actually chose because it was the only one I could find with usable and easily understandable graphs and charts.
If it's learning about your world you want, and you don't want to be bored then Discover is your magazine. I look forward to every issue and learn something new every time.