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Ask HN: What are some of your favorite journals or magazines?
186 points by pthreads on Nov 22, 2020 | hide | past | favorite | 135 comments
Recently a bookstore near me that used to carry lots of interesting periodicals (including my favorite 2600) stopped all of them. So I have decided to subscribe directly. What are some of your favorite magazines/journals (tech and non-tech) that you love and wish would last for a long time to come.

Lapham's Quarterly - each issue (4x a year) looks at a different topic with a focus on history and showing various perspectives across times and cultures. each issue has writing from the ancients through this year.

Cabinet - I used to subscribe to this one but my subscription lapsed. it is kind of a hipster magazine and some of the stuff in there is obtuse garbage but every once in a while they hit it. this is a good example - http://www.cabinetmagazine.org/issues/52/hodes.php

Harper's is usually pretty good though I've never subscribed.

If you live in a big city there are usually a couple really high quality newstands that carry 100s or 1000s of magazines - I love browsing those. recently I came away from one with an issue of Fantasic man, Reason mag, and Harpers. always worth a trip.

Another good place to view magazines is art school libraries. they usually have some more wacky ones like adbusters or BITCH and some of them are true visual feasts. of course they are more liberal so you won't find stuff like the american conservative or anything murdoch owned but every once in a while you will come across something really amazing.

Just finished the piece on pallets. What a fantastic story, a slice of the world i’d never considered.

Which one?

Just subscribed to Lapham's. I've read a few pieces from them over the years, but somehow this description clinched actual subscription.

Well that's yet another rabbit hole that residents of hacker news have tossed me down. The article about pallets was very cool and rekindled my interest in building things out of the wood from closed pallets.

well now I feel dumb for pointing out that a journal with the term quarterly in the title is published 4x a year lol - here's the link https://www.laphamsquarterly.org/

another thing to add - if you want back issues of magazines you can usually get them pretty cheap at https://www.abebooks.com

Heh... Whatever. It's gratifying to see Lapham's Quarterly at the top of the thread. Cheers!

I've been reading the Economist for about 10 years. It provides great coverage on big issues, and recently, some fun ones (billie eilish comes to mind).

It's unique in that it feels "slower", more deliberate, and thoughtful than most newspaper/tv channels. It gives context and covers multiple viewpoints before giving an opinion. Its daily espresso newsletter and quarterly tech issues are always interesting too.

I've subscribed to NYT and WSJ over the years, but none feels as differentiated as the Economist. (Haven't tried Financial Times, if someone has and likes them, please do share your thoughts)

The obituaries in the Economist (at the back) are often poignant and insightful, and sometimes cover individuals who deserve to be better known.

I remember a joint obit in 2008 of Jack Scott (weather forecaster) and Reg Varney (who starred in British sitcom On The Buses). Not an expected pairing.


reg varney - the first person to publicly use a cash machine

And the first cash machine used cheques with radioactive Carbon 14 rather than plastic cards!


The Economist is great, but it definitely wears its biases on its sleeve; it hasn’t quite found a problem the free market can’t solve.

I tend to disagree. While a pro market magazine, it often suggests strong government actions. I think you have never dealt with real fee market fetishists.

The only annoying things is the double Christmas issue and the "New Year outlook". They always write the same. The world has never been better and everything becomes better and next year will be better than the last.

Free-market propaganda is quite literally The Economist's design intent:

And now we beg to submit the following detail of the plans which we have thoroughly organised to carry into effect these objects of our ardent desires, in the following PROSPECTUS of a weekly paper, to be published every Saturday, and to be called THE ECONOMIST, which will contain— First.—ORIGINAL LEADING ARTICLES, in which free-trade principles will be most rigidly applied to all the important questions of the day—political events—and parliamentary discussions; and particularly to all such as relate immediately to revenue, commerce, and agriculture; or otherwise affect the material interests of the country.


It is biased, but I wouldn't agree with that (just for example, they oppose ACA repeal).

What I like most about it is how many of the articles are structured sort-of dialectically: "Here is a problem, here is what we think should be done, here are one or more alternative proposals and arguments against what we suggested, here's why we think that despite that this is the best of the options." It gives you the impression that the writer has considered opposing ideas, weighed up the trade-offs, and nominated the least bad course of action. Of course it's easy to find places they were wrong (supporting the Vietnam and Iraq II wars didn't age well), but it's so much better than most periodicals and op-eds where the writer only argues their own view as the only wise and moral option.

I don't know about that, they definitely encourage government intervention in certain situations; they aren't market-is-lord types.

I was fine with The Economist. They advocate their beliefs, still want to reduce human suffering, still consider opposing views with respect.

I hate ambulance chase style reporting. So I most like the magazine-style news recap of current events, giving stuff 1-4 weeks to settle down before picking over the wreckage. None of the USA imitators have ever done as well (Newsweek).

I don't like unsigned bylines, but I get that's their thing.

With so many poor imitators, their dry wit (editorial voice) now just sounds snarky. I'm so done with it. As a Gen X, Boomers and my fellow Gen X exhaust me.

I canceled my subscription over their support for the second Iraq War. I can carry a grudge. I haven't resumed The Atlantic for the same reason.

But I've since filled my attention budget with more left leaning content. Neoliberalism had it's day. I'm interested in what comes next. Not becoming a curmudgeon yelling at the kids to get off my lawn. So I doubt I'll ever resub to The Economist.

I do miss the both special topic and the regional focus issues.

If you like the Economist then you might like Bloomberg Business Week. I know I expected it to be bad but it’s actually wonderful. The design team is amazing. I find it the perfect mix of business/economy and pop culture. Often there are 2 or 3 long form articles on a truly fascinating subject.

Their journalists do a year end “jealousy list” website that is always creatively designed and filled with a TROVE of great articles from the year from all over. I never really see it talked about but I get excited for it every year. Keep your eyes peeled in about a month!

Love the Economist.

At previous work, we had Financial Times subscription. It, obviously, is a more finance-bent, but I find it a delight in journalist professionality and the deepness of commentary.

The weekend edition gives a more eclectic mix of topics and is a really informative read.

I simply love FT.

> I simply love FT.

For what it's worth I've direct email-ed two of their opinion writers and they dutifully responded (and not the standard "thank you for your email/for reading my piece" stuff), I really appreciated that. For comparison, the journalists from my country are more primadonas, I don't see them answering any readers' emails (for starters, their email addresses are not provided in the newspaper's website).

Thank you! I used to read the Economist a few years ago but had to stop for various life technical reasons. The latest one is that my infant tries to tear anything made of paper apart -- but your comment made me look up whether there's a Kindle edition of the Economist and there is! Maybe not on par with the print one for me, but certainly better than nothing!

Related to the Economist's areas of writing: what do people think of Harvard Business Review? Does it have valuable content?

HBR occasionally has good pieces and does make me think. Mostly they are fluff pieces advanced by writers with vested interests.

You can subscribe to their newsletter. I was subscribed but eventually got bored as their content was too generic and not actionable

I had my suspicions about their content being too idealistic, being directed to that 'flavor of the month' manager audience. But it's a sin that doesn't really go away with the Economist, either.


Why not?

Weekly news is such a great cadence and I love the audio recording they publish with each issue.

Private Eye. Probably only of interest to those in the UK (Ireland has The Phoenix, which appears superficially similar at least).

As far as I'm aware it's the only widely distributed investigative journalism magazine. You get to read about some scandals months or years before they break in the news, plenty never make it of course.

There are a number of regular features but the one on the state of national health by M.D. has been by far and a way the most insightful thing I've read on the state of various countries under covid. This includes how the govt. has cocked up, and frequent admissions of how covid confounded the assumptions of the medical community.

It's also got a good line in satire, reviews, absurdity and cartoons. It can be a bit of a slog to read, especially if you go page by page, but that's probably more a reflection of the value of the content than the quality of the prose.

> Private Eye. Probably only of interest to those in the UK

I am from Latin-America, I learned about the existence of Private Eye from the famous Hawkings-Thorne-Preskill bet . To this day it's one of the publications that makes me laugh the most, right from the cover, to _pseuds corner_ (Oh man they would love HN comments section), Coleman's balls, the Lookalikes,etc.

The crossword is also amusing


> Low-tech Magazine questions the blind belief in technological progress, and talks about the potential of past and often forgotten knowledge and technologies when it comes to designing a sustainable society. Interesting possibilities arise when you combine old technology with new knowledge and new materials, or when you apply old concepts and traditional knowledge to modern technology.

> Low-tech Magazine publishes at most 12 well-researched stories per year.

It's partner site, no tech magazine is also great.

I always love seeing how some complex problems have been solved in such different ways than I would have imagined.


Thanks for sharing, looks very interesting from a quick glance!


It's an online zine focused on programming and hacking. If you like 2600 you'll love pagedout.

Wow this is really cool. Great find thanks!

thanks, this looks really nice!

Logic Magazine (https://logicmag.io/) is the only one I truly care about. I don't have their entire catalogue, but I've read everything they've produced in the last year or so. They've recently released a couple of ebooks and I'm slowly making my way through them. I'm surprised nobody mentioned them yet.

Other than that, I occasionally read 2600 and Jacobin, though I'm not as engaged with them as I am with Logic.

> Logic Magazine (https://logicmag.io/) is the only one I truly care about.

I checked out some of the articles and meh. But hey, _de gustibus..._

Make Magazine. I know it has its detractors here, and some of the material ends up being dated pretty quick, but it represents a mindset that I really enjoy, which is that you have the ability to transform the world around you. It’s the same thing I love about programming, but for physical objects.

N+1 and The Baffler both seem to be constitutionally incapable of releasing a bad issue. Highly recommended.

Jacobin is uneven, but if you read Reason et al you owe it to yourself to pick up a copy now and then to keep up with ideological writing in the land of the living.

The Economist is an incredibly well written magazine that unfortunately - editorials aside - can't escape the compulsion of not even being wrong. Save your money and just sign up for a couple of Axios newsletters for the same effect.

I have not read Edge in years, maybe decades, but it deserves a mention for treating video games as digital art rather than consumer electronics.

> can't escape the compulsion of not even being wrong.

On the few occasions that the E has run stories on topics I know well, it has been remarkably accurate and insightful.

All of the regional reports are written by independent, freelance correspondents so they stand or fall on the quality of their work.

> On the few occasions that the E has run stories on topics I know well, it has been remarkably accurate and insightful.

I have had the total opposite experience, so much that it really turned me off from the magazine.From obligatory weekly reading now I get an issue every once in a while, the same happens again and I question my masochist tendencies.

> can't escape the compulsion of not even being wrong.

What does this phrase mean? Is the economist not wrong? Why is that then unfortunate?

TIL, thanks for sharing.

I'd forgotten about Edge, I had a subscription for years. I only picked up a copy to occupy me during a flight but I was stunned to find it actually talking seriously about interesting stuff!

I was pretty young and probably impressionable, but the difference between EDGE and the likes of PC Gamer/Zone/Format was remarkable. Hence this remark.


If, Mondo2000, OMNI. "Speculative techno-utopianism", if one had to affix a label to the genre. Not sure if anything exists like that today?




Sorry in advance for the negativity. I'd love to rediscover the joy of reading quality periodicals so I'll read other comments here and try anything that looks good.

As for my experiences lately...

I subscribed to The Atlantic after reading it online.

The print edition is disappointing for the quality of its typography and illustrations. The layout subediting should contribute a lot more to the experience. Instead, I feel like I'm wading aimlessly through a swamp without landmarks.

I like the online typography and layout of NYT and WSJ, and I subscribed to both for the quality of their newsrooms and the depth of their resources.

I lament the polarisation of journalistic publications into left and right. This is particularly jarring in the comments sections of NYT and WSJ. The partisan tropes are unedifying, repetitious and dull. I'm happier not reading them.

For hardcopy, I'm reading books.

I for one find your criticism to be enlightening and valuable. If I may ask you to continue, what qualities do you think are signs of good experiences in print and digital literature?

Good question. I’m wondering if my online experiences have changed my expectations and readiness for print.

30 years ago, I’d luxuriate in a copy of Foreign Affairs, The Economist, New Yorker, Interview, NME. Each of those publications gave me subject depth I couldn’t get anywhere else, and the long form articles would provide background and context. They were another world. All I had to do was pay the cover price and find somewhere comfortable to sit without interruption.

What’s different now is I can get all the background and context I need for subjects about which I am naive online through search and Wikipedia. I don’t have to wait for next months periodical to satisfy a curiosity in a subject. So what I want from periodicals has changed. I’m just understanding this more clearly as I respond to your question.

With a magazine, I can’t search, so I want a different experience. I want what I can’t get online for free - inside information, deep subject specialty, skilful curation. The Atlantic often has that, but the curation isn’t assisted by bland typography and illustrations. New Yorker is better that way. I can tell which articles to read without trawling through 500 words.

It's interesting that you use the word "curation" to describe designing for literature. Lately I have been looking into how museums put together exhibits and how to integrate some of their approaches into web or print publishing.

It feels like so much of what you described is lost today ie., skill and decorum in displaying words meaningfully. If I may ask, what are some personal design principles that you look for when critiquing a publication (be it print or on the Web)?

For the record I am not employed by any company or agency, I am only an individual who is trying to get a better understanding of what I should be looking for as a consumer and creator myself. To boot, I appreciate your insight and the thought processes behind it. Thank you!

> Lately I have been looking into how museums put together exhibits and how to integrate some of their approaches into web or print publishing.

That is a fascinating approach. Do you have any examples?

Pardon the late response.

As of right now I have no examples of my own to show you. Everything is theoretical. I'm not sure if this is something that has been thought of before and I haven't really looked around to see if there are explicit examples or thoughts similar to mine.

But what I've covered so far mainly focuses on the similarities between the non-linear experience of an exhibit (be it at a museum, library, gallery, etc.) and the non-linear experience of a Hypertext narrative on the Web. Of course, this is less feasible in print.

But for the most part, the appeal at least to me, is breaking up a single theme/Web article across multiple pages and allowing online visitors to have their own unique experiences determined by the order in which they click a link as decided by the different contexts that a link can be placed in.

The goal is to implement something contrary to the linear structure of the Web page, especially something unlike the impersonal experience that are online publications.

Thank you for your insight, very interesting.

I would particularly underline 'skilful curation' as a very strong selling point. The ability to see through all the noise, and select for relevance/interest.

Also, inside information is a big one. In a comment above, I said I appreciate Financial Times for their professionality of journalism: their journalists will often times investigate complex topics, calling up subjects, knocking on doors (the amazing coverage of the recent Wirecard scandal comes to mind) its exactly the type of original, often inside information that is worth paying for.

Do you want a totally different perspective on modern life that is well-written and will force you out of normal patterns of thinking?

Read old magazines. Not early Wired old. 1800s/early to mid 1900s old. Very old. The Spectator...of Addison and Steele. Life magazine, but not that upstart that started in the 1930s, but the original humor magazine.

A short list

Early Fortune magazines (1930s-1950s) to get a sense of the evolution of modern business and technology. Wonderful graphics.

The first hundred years of Harpers...up to, say, 1970. McClures. Saturday Evening Post. Scribners. Colliers. The Nation preWWII.

Early Scientific Americans. Read the 75th anniversary issue talking about all the early tech wonders that led to its 75th anniversary...celebrated in 1920. The issues of the 1870s have wonderful illustrations of intricate machinery.

Judge magazine and the first Life Magazine...both humor magazines about the foibles of lived modern life in the early 20th Century.

Niles Weekly Register, published 1810-1840. Learn how early US cities grew up...the bones of many Eastern cities formed during this period.

Early Popular Science and Popular Mechanics from 1920s-1950s.

Early enthusiast radio magazines from the 1910s to 1950s...the Internet of its time.

Everyday Engineering and Everyday Mechanics magazines of the late 1910s. A boy’s magazine focusing on simple projects teenagers could build on their own: movie cameras, radio telephones, small gasoline engines starting from raw iron and doing your own castings, wireless controlled torpedoes...

The illustrator art on the front covers of some of these are worth the price of admission alone. You can pick up vintage issues for anywhere from $7.00 to $50.00...mostly $15-$20.

Binge-reading ten or so issues of magazines of a given decade, say 1930s, is a psychedelic experience. You lift your eyes and your head is still in the 1930s. And you start asking interesting questions...

How do you find these?

Milk Street Kitchen is the absolute best periodical for recipes and cooking in my opinion.


Its by the same founder of America's Test Kitchen/Cooks Illustrated, which is another respected publication. However, Milk Street recipes tend to be simpler, less fussy and more internationally inspired. Everything I have made from them has been an absolute winner. They also have an outstanding high quality TV show free on Youtube. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpGcoQ4AmidJSpDUXPZoq8A

If you read French, MISC is a great magazine about IT security and hacking. You can find it at the airport between the cars magazines and video games magazines and it will contain excellent articles. For example a JVM hack with the byte code explained in details, or spying a wireless Logitech keyboard by forcing it into an old compatibility mode and then bruteforcing the encryption key, or a step by step tutorial to run a debugger on the Android Snapshat to break its encryption (from my memory).


"Delayed Gratification" is all of that for me - they 'revisit the events of the last three months to offer in-depth, independent journalism in an increasingly frantic world.'


Love all these recommendations btw! There is something about the combination of good writing, photos and layout that makes a magazine satisfying.

Yeah, this is one I would definitely subscribe to if only I had a convenient way to get access to some issues without subscribing first. Alas, the only reseller in my area is no longer keeping them in stock.

I've been interested in this, but it's a steep price to pay without a preview of their work - I'm a college student so funds are tight.

2600, It's always a treat to keep in the washroom magazine rack with a old DigiKey catalogue. Worth it just for the joy of finding it in my mailbox and reading the user submitted letters.

[0] https://2600.com/

The London Review of Books.

Imagine the New Yorker (in depth, long form, political and cultural) but far, far less obsessed with wokeness... yet still with a useful and critical eye on conservatism.

The LRB usually has several somethings worth reading and the physical format (non gloss newsprint) is appealing.

Seconding The Economist. A league on its own. :-)

I never subscribed, but like/liked to read (e.g. at B&N)

THE NEW YORKER 2600 FOREIGN POLICY HARPER'S THE ATLANTIC Even the Rolling Stone can have good articles. E.g.: https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/how-amer...

The Economist if you want to get all the wrong information about the world.

I doubt there is a magazine in the world that can compete in deep, knowledge and network (And I can read magazines in at least 3 major languages, possibly four).

Would you mind to elaborate where the Economist delivers "wrong" information? Preferably give some specific examples.

The economist is okay if you are conservative liberal with strong bias towards the "west". Russia and China are _wrong_ by default, every _war_ (Syria, Ukraine, Libya, Afghanistan, Iran... all of them failed campaigns by public standards, Afghanistan not failed(?) by US standards - Afghanistan is about global heroin control btw) is justifiable and actively supported, Banks ought to be _protected_ any social-welfare policy (before covid, in the covid era the tune has changed considerably) is brought to us by "populist devilish politicians" while every bank-saving, pro-market scheme which leaves large % of the population jobless is "made-in-heaven".

The economist like reading an old British grandmother supporting financial schemes and policies which failed more time than I can count, again and again.

By the way before 2010 the articles were better argued and these differences were not so blatant. I believe the quality has decreased considerably. Then again, these are polarized times...

There's also the good parts. The obituary, the "Charlemagne" part is often somewhat relevant.

Examples of double-standards are Brexit vs France "yello vests" movement. The British should by all means do another referendum or the politicians should mimic the 2015 Greek PM and revert the result the of the referendum because "people don't know". The French voters should stay put and accept "the result of the democratic procedures" which brought Macron to power. So... Which one is it then? Respect democracy or overturn it? ;-)

When I was a subscriber I was getting informed for various matters all over the world, so if it's the economist vs nothing, I would prefer the economist. If it's the economist vs something else, well... I don't know.

I ignore the war statements since I would have to review several issues again before I could give an opinion.

"conservative liberal" Not sure that the Economist is conservative. Sure, it is pro-market and pro "west" in the sense of Open Society and Democracy.

"The British should by all means do another referendum or the politicians should mimic the 2015 Greek PM and revert the result the of the referendum because "people don't know"."

This may have indeed the best solution since nobody really know what "Brexit" means since there are several options of Brexit. But I also remember the issue where they wrote: Now, as Brexit has happened, lets try to make the best out of it.

"Respect democracy or overturn it? ;-)" Well, currently the majority of the British people are against Brexit. So it is the uttermost democratic principle, that opinions can change.

"When I was a subscriber I was getting informed for various matters all over the world, so if it's the economist vs nothing, I would prefer the economist. If it's the economist vs something else, well... I don't know."

Is is unlikely that there is a magazine that can afford the intelligence service of the economist. Maybe Bloomberg.

I find the New York Times a far superior publication both in terms of volume and breadth of authors. The fact that the economist doesn’t post the name of the authors is problematic.

Regarding the “war statement” as you put it, all you have to do is find one war it didn’t openly support. Even the Genocide in Yemen was supported :-)

If you can give a few examples of “the west promoting democracy”would be fine, surely Afghanistan, Libya, Ukraine or Syria are not “democracies”, they’re more like failed states.

I understand that some people have a hard time accepting democratic results, when these results don’t conform with their worldview. The Brexit referendum was by all means a wrong choice, but showcased a country with institutions that work vs one (Greece) totally controllore by oligarchs and foreign powers. So which one better? I guess depends on the virtuous one believes in, freedom is a good one IMO :-)

We have pretty much the same list except The Economist. Judging by all the ups it’s getting here I may need to check it out.

I enjoy both Quanta and Aeon. They get linked on HN somewhat often, and for good reason - they manage to balance being detailed and informative on technical subject matter while still being interesting and readable.

The New Yorker and The Economist have already been mentioned but are worth mentioning again.

Le Monde Diplomatique has some great material. Though I'm not quite willing to subscribe, maybe a third of their articles are available for free.

Analog magazine: Science fiction and fact. Bimonthly, covers a good selection of current science fact, with plausable, fairly hard fiction.

Started reading more in print magazines to help pass the lockdown time.

In general, I'd recommend Monocle to just about anyone. The articles and photography are top notch: https://monocle.com/magazine/

For Canadians living in or entranced by the Maritimes: https://maritimeedit.com/

Not trying to troll here. But Monocle? I always wondered who reads this? Poor people who want to know how rich people live? (Trust me, no rich person I know of would buy this poser magazine).

The Public Domain Review: https://publicdomainreview.org/

Stripe has a software magazine called increment that’s pretty cool.

I’ve also liked a lot of writing in the Atlantic.

Recently I subscribed to some Substacks: Persuasion, The Weekly Dish, The Diff which are usually interesting.

It is a French magazine about video-games with a satirical tone. It is called "Canard PC", which is a play on a well-known toilet brand ("Canard WC"). It brings interesting takes to video-game coverage, and it makes me laugh.

There is one free article per week. This is the current one and it is very typical: https://www.canardpc.com/413/jouer-among-us-comme-un-enquete...

This is the one which will be free 11 hours from now: https://www.canardpc.com/413/xbox-ps5-choix-de-la-nouvelle-g...

also, a "canard" is a slang word for a newspaper (cf "le canard enchaîné") ;)

I was a long time subscriber to Scientific American and IEEE Computer and tried to read The Economist as often as possible also.

I also used to buy local newspapers as well. But these days it's just so expensive, both in terms of money and time, that I gave most of that up.

And that's a lot of paper to have around, so I generally just read stuff online these days.

I agree with several of the other commenters here in suggesting you go to a real book/magazine store and look around. Then check out the online versions magazines you identified and make sure it's something in which you're willing to invest time and money.

I'd give an extra plug to The Economist, as it's generally really well written and will spur you to think even if you disagree with some of their positions.

Current Affairs strikes me in some ways as the anti-Economist. Brilliant and even if you disagree with their politics their critique of the current state of capitalism is well-researched, well-argued and insightful.

Jacobin is the house publication of the resurgent socialist labor movement. Given the generational sea change in attitudes toward socialism, the resurgence of fascism, and economic conditions we haven’t seen since the Gilded Age (1/4 of the US population unemployed or earning starvation wages) it seems wise to keep an eye on what may become future policy.

The Believer is a simply amazing literary and culture magazine nurtured by Dave Eggers / McSweeneys. Amazing interviews, off-kilter features and some of the best illustrators / graphic novelists of the past 20 years.

The Golfer's Journal: https://www.golfersjournal.com/. It's basically National Geographic, but for Golf. I adore it.

Nice list and not just the publications. I had never heard of Lobster before. And I had forgotten about Physics Today actually.

My favorite magazine is Software Design (https://gihyo.jp/magazine/SD), a Japanese magazine that specializes in software engineering and IT topics. It reminds me of Dr. Dobbs' Journal. The articles are well-written and have code samples. I started reading this magazine in 2010 when I was living in Japan doing an internship at a major Japanese tech company, and I always purchase a physical copy whenever I visit Japan.

I like Research*EU.

It's free, made by the EU and every month I find some really good articles that worth reading.

I'll leave a link to this month's issue in case you're interested.


The Spectator. It's been going since 1828 though so it's pretty long lived already. Profitable currently as well so should be able to keep going for a while.

Circuit Cellar [1], if you're into electronics. Good mix of industry coverage, recent trends, and experiential projects. It's like a more sophisticated version of Elektor.

Maximum PC [2], for the PC enthusiasts out there.

[1] https://circuitcellar.com/

[2] http://maximumpc.com/

I've been a big fan of my stack magazine subscription: https://www.stackmagazines.com/subscribe/

It's a little left leaning when they choose "critical" works, but also I received great magazines like OH-SO (https://www.stackmagazines.com/magazine/oh-so-issue-4/) which is an all girls skateboard magazine (great photos and wonderful to see a small community serving itself) and Visions which was fun sci-fi short stories: https://www.stackmagazines.com/magazine/visions-issue-2/ If you want to support a variety of independent magazines and are okay with randomness, most have been great.

> left leaning

I’m always reminded of Colbert’s famous quote about reality having a liberal bias. It seems to ring consistently true

* For news: Financial Times; The Economist

* UK politics/culture: New Statesman (not The Spectator!)

* Literature: The London Review of Books

* Cooking: BBC Good Food - so good to receive a thick magazine of new recipes each month, stops your lockdown cooking repertoire getting stale.

My favorite from earlier in my life were: National Geographic (as a kid) and Byte (teenager; taught me everything I knew about computers).

Why not The Spectator? I think it's a good read which frequently has thought-provoking articles. This is despite me disagreeing with a lot (maybe even a majority) of their writers.

Why not the Spectator? I've been a subscriber for 10 years. It's a great way to expose yourself to different views, and Rory Sutherland's columns are always worth reading.

Second New Statesman always fascinating perspectives on current affairs

I love National Geographic and have been a subsciber of this magazine for more than 10 years now.When I read this magazine which is full with amazing photos and graphs I am always taken to a very exciting and absurbing place.

Another magazine which I also love and subscribed to for the last years is Popular Science which I highly recommand.

Communications of the ACM and IEEE Spectrum.

Not a magazine, but the Thinking About Things newsletter is always interesting. https://www.thinking-about-things.com

Seconded, with a footnote that its articles regularly appear on HN.

There is also now I know, a daily light digestible easy read that bring a lot of interesting lesser known stories.


I really enjoy Courier, one of the only magazines I still get excited to read each month

Lots of stories about founding small tech and non tech businesses across the world, from DTC brands to restaurants to delivery companies. Always great stories about how founders got through a journey, intersped with top quality advice and tips. And celebrates lots of folks who do a craft just for the sake of it. Delightful read


I read Jacobin everyday.

For new and/or adventurous music: The Wire - https://www.thewire.co.uk/

I enjoy reading Fermat's Library (https://fermatslibrary.com/journal_club), a publication that covers one scientific paper of interest a week (give or take) with annotations by the authors. Papers come from a wide variety of fields: biology, computer science, physics, mathematics, anthropology, and so on.

Failory is one site that I've come to like in recent times. They talk about startup failures amongst other things. But it provides some semi regular blogs on start ups that went bust and why. I believe that there's a lot to learn from someone else's mistakes. And there are some that are also quite hilarious like the one in Juicer.

However, it isn't a magazine or a journal per se. The link is failory.com

Sound on Sound magazine! https://www.soundonsound.com/

Australian or New Zealand Geographic. I am into hiking, and environmentalism is the topic I care about most when it comes to politics. Aus Geo manages to cover these topics with thoughtful and in-depth stories. I like the focus on my own country, I always find out something new and interesting from reading an issue.

Two which i've subscribed in print form recently:

Monocle - Really a general affairs magazine particularly focussed on Urban design, travel, technology, business and current affairs. Global editing staff. Produce some nice podcasts as well.

Courier - Startup focussed in the UK but i find it generally informative and attractive style to it.

Nature. There is front matter that is quite approachable, including introductions to the main articles.

The main articles are more readable than you might expect -- pick up a copy at a university library to give it a try.

My only wish is that they offer an every-other-week subscription. A year of Nature is a lot of material.

The New Yorker.

The New York Review of Books.

London Review of Books.

The Paris Review.

And one I miss:

CoEvolution Quarterly.

The Hedgehog Review (https://hedgehogreview.com/)

The New Atlantis (https://www.thenewatlantis.com/)

Lucky Peach and McSweeney.

+1 for Lucky Peach. It's been out of print for a few years now, but you can pick up issues from eBay and used bookstores for $5-10 each if you're patient and willing to buy multiple issues at once.

Each issue is about one topic (Chinatown, Summer, All You Can Eat, Plants, etc.) and has some mix of recipes, travelogue, art, fiction, memoir, history, etc. If you're interested in food, this is some of the most "fun" food writing around. A personal favorite of mine is the "Fantasy" issue, which is written around chefs and dishes that don't exist, and kind of doubles as an affectionate parody of food writing.

AramCo, Laphams Quarterly, Nautilus, Quanta, New Yorker(on the fence now),National Geographic, Popular Mechanics.

ETA: London review of books, Edge.org before they shuttered(they are back. I didn’t know).

USENIX's ;login is a great. It went all-digital recently.

London Review of Books - which I receive print copies of.

The New Yorker - which I read on a kindle.

Domus - which I receive print copies of.

If I had to pick one journalistic endeavor to support it would be the New Yorker.

The Economist and Real Simple. Great recipes in the latter.

Monocle. Great pics and interesting articles. Also the New Yorker because practically they're the kings of long form articles.

In German: AlleAktien.de (in depth stock analyses and general ultra-long-term, rational investing)

Harper's, The Economist, and for anyone in the Western U.S., High Country News.

Monocle, great mix of art, lifestyle, politics, food, architecture and style


Aperture Mother Jones New Yorker Vanity Fair


Capitol Hill Seattle blog New York Times Talking Points Memo

With commas:

Aperture, Mother Jones, New Yorker, Vanity Fair,


Capitol Hill, Seattle blog, New York Times, Talking Points Memo

Mine are IEEE's "Computer" and "Software". Their "Annals of the History of Computing" is also a great read. Horrendously expensive, unfortunately. IEEE also has the IBM journals behind a paywall. I real shame.

ACM's "Communications of the ACM" is also very good.

I can recommend CACM aswell. It's currently my only computer related magazine source. New Scientist magazine used to be worth a look too on a broad spectrum of popular science, it lately became more political and esotheric sadly though.

IEEE Spectrum is their main flagship publication across all interest areas and is one of the best mags still in print.

Also whatever happened to Byte - that was a good read way back when.

[1] https://spectrum.ieee.org/

Spectrum is so thin however...

Hey posters!

This is a great topic, and a lot of great responses... but it would be nice to link out to your journal/magazines. I know I’m being a little lazy but I’ve searched for a bunch, and it seems like an ideal use for a link.


Financial Times

Wasted Talent

The Jacobin - jacobinmag.com/ - for the socialist perspective and analysis.

Skeptic, Reason, Spectator, Lapham’s, Nautilus, Foreign Policy, Economist ... I could keep going but the world of magazines is far richer than regular news. There is significant diversity of thought available (just buy a few different magazines), and with the long form format, there is more than just a shallow hot take.

One frustration is that as you devote more time to reading from such sources, the more mainstream news and social media seem broken. It can be harder to feel connected to others and even depressing, because the world in general is short on nuance while the world of magazines and journals offers it in spades. Still, it’s worth it.

I highly suggest visiting a Barnes & Noble or another retailer with a big magazine section, and checking out what they have to offer in person. Many stores also carry more serious academic journals (I recently discovered the Cato journal) as well as literary journals that can be a great way to discover rare gems.

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