Ask the Readers: Do You Prefer Print Magazines, Online Articles, or Both for Your Important Geeky Reading Needs?

By Akemi Iwaya on February 2nd, 2011

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We all love to read information about new computer hardware, gadgets, software, and how-to articles to help us and satisfy our need for geeky knowledge. This week we would like to know if you prefer subscribing to/buying print magazines, doing all of your reading online, or using a combination of both.

computer-magazines

Image by Lenz Grimmer.

Note: We have not included books in this particular poll because they tend to focus on a specific topic in great detail. Our poll is more focused on general geeky reading goodness.

Print magazines can be very useful in their own way. The articles that interest you may be longer and more detailed than what you find online, can include lots of images and useful charts, and are already formatted in a usable format if you need to keep them for reference material and future use. Another nice thing about print magazines is their portability. You do not need a power source or battery to access them and if you accidentally drop them, then no harm done. The downsides are that they are only released every so often and contain a set/limited amount of information per issue. Depending on the particular publication they can also be expensive.

Online articles and sources of reading are very different from print magazines in the amount of information that you can access at a specific time. As long as you have an internet connection, your favorite blogs, RSS feeds, and a search engine at hand, you can read to your heart’s content. If you are searching for a particular topic you may have to invest a bit of time to find a group of articles on that subject, but chances are you will find adequate amounts to suit your needs. Only need a portion of the information you find? Printing or saving the parts that you need is a definite bonus and minimizes storage requirements. Some downsides to online articles and sources are that they can vary in their quality (i.e. accuracy, readability, etc.) and may be buried amidst a lot of useless “chaff” set up to generate advertising revenue.

This week we would like to know if you prefer print magazines, online sources, or a combination of both for your geeky reading needs. Do you prefer print magazines for important information such as specs on hardware or other topics? Perhaps online sources provide just the information you need on a given topic much better than a print magazine. Maybe it takes a combination of both just to keep up with your appetite for geeky information of all kinds. Let us know your thoughts and recommendations in the comments!

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Akemi Iwaya is a devoted Mozilla Firefox user who enjoys working with multiple browsers and occasionally dabbling with Linux. She also loves reading fantasy and sci-fi stories as well as playing "old school" role-playing games. You can visit her on Twitter and .

  • Published 02/2/11
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