Editorial: Moving Forward, and More Often
One of the most common requests of Internet Modeler has been to increase the publication rate. This is not an easy matter, especially when you have an established monthly cycle. Over the last year or so, though, we have been working on developing a system that would allow just that, and starting this month, Internet Modeler will shift to a feed-based cycle. What this means is much more timely delivery of industry news and reviews, while still maintaining the high quality of research and production in our articles.
What feed-based means for the reader is that there is no set publication cycle. We will be publishing articles and news as they come in, which means that we could have a half-dozen articles on one day, and then nothing for three days. On the surface, this would seem to be a difficult way of doing things. However, the Internet has a nifty tool available called Really Simple Syndication, or RSS. What RSS does (and it is built into all the mainstream browsers) is allow the viewer to 'subscribe' to websites that have an RSS Feed. Then, whenever that site is updated with new articles, the viewer's RSS Reader updates their list with the page titles and summaries. This allows you to quickly see what was published, and whether you would want to go and read the full article. With RSS feeds set up for a great number of sites, this quickly becomes a very powerful tool, as it allows you to keep up with many sites without actually spending the time to browse to each one.
As noted, each browser has their own RSS reader built in, but many will prefer a standalone reader. These can be found for both computers and mobile devices, including apps for phones. For simplicity, though, I prefer one that I can access anywhere, any time, and so I use the Google Reader as part of my iGoogle home page. With that set up, every time I visit my home page, I get a list of current articles for the sites I have subscribed to. In minutes I can scan the headlines and catch up on all the news and information I need to, leaving me with more time to do research on the Internet and (dare I say), even, get off the computer and on the workbench. By the way, there are quite a few other useful iGoogle tools that make it an excellent home page, such as online translators and currency converters. Having all of those at one location really makes a lot of sense.
You will also notice with this issue that we have added a sidebar navigation menu. This should help maneuver through past articles. We are also looking at improving the search function to yield better results (note, the search function only works for those back issues that are in the new system; we're slowly bringing all the back issues online in the new system, please bear with us as we complete that monumental task), with the goal of having all the past articles easily accessible through several methods.
So, set your RSS feed to Internet Modeler, sit back, and enjoy the continued high quality of articles and reviews as we move forward as one of the best online modeling sites.