Issue # 10 Monday, August 3, 1998

About the Author:

Internet e-zine guru Todd Kuipers

Todd Kuipers is a software designer/Internet consultant, living and breathing, with his wife Susanna, in Calgary, Alberta. He is resident at Merak Projects currently working on Web based implementations of their petroleum software. He spends his spare time reading, writing, reading and writing about beer, tasting beer, reviewing anything that he comes across and providing pure research skills to paying customers. Things Todd and Internet can be seen at http://propagandist.com/.

One time proprietor of the currently defunct "E-mail-zines list", a listing of e-zines available via e-mail, Todd kept his interest in "low-bandwidth active delivery content" and currently subscribes to 40+ e-mail publications on a wide variety of topics.


  

INDEX
Special - E-mail-zine Essentials

This week two UK based newsletters, "Ansible", a science fiction newsletter, and the other, "NTK," now a high-tech news weekly.

Review - Ansible
Quick Rating:
Overall - 5
Content - 5
Writing - 5
Regularity - 5
Extras - 5

E-zine Description: Ansible (ISSN 0265-9816) is Dave Langford's notorious monthly British sf/fan newsletter, published since 1979 in print and both on-line and print more recently. This multiple Hugo Award winning (1987, 1995 and 1996) newsletter is packed full of news, commentary, reviews and event listings.

Frequency of Publication: Monthly

Subscription Instructions:
Address:
Majordomo@imi.gla.ac.uk
Message Body: subscribe ansible

Also available in print. details at the Web site.

WWW location: http://www.dcs.gla.ac.uk/SF-Archives/Ansible/Ansible.html

Contact Information:
e-mail: David Langford ansible@cix.co.uk

Cost: Free!

Review

The Ansible has a long, illustrious and well connected history, which shows in the content and listings of every issue. Packed full of news blurbs and fabulous (and often hilarious) gossip, this e-mail-zine easily provides the SF info fix I need every month. Take an easy chance, visit the Ansible Web site and check out the past issues, you will not be disappointed.

Rating:

Content - 5
The gossip alone is worth reading the Ansible for, let alone the extensive listing of conventions and assorted gatherings. The Infinitely Improbable section leads you through the latest awards and award short lists, new periodicals, new books, obituraries and other bits.

Writing Quality/Style - 5
Excellent blend of information and humour. Almost everything is delivered with a decent touch of wit or sarcasm. Well organized and easy to read, but just messy enough to show a touch of character.

Regularity - 5
Monthly. The issues I've received have arrived during the first week of every month.

Extras - 5
All issues have the obligatory un/subscribe, copyright and distribution info. Attached to the Web site are a few extra goodies like the other David Langford columns and the UK SF Fandom Archive.

Overall - 5
Reading the Ansible I regularly find a author, book or publication that I'm willing to try. David Langford's style and information make this one worth subscribing to whether you live in the UK or not (of course it's probably even more useful if you have the chance to visit some of the local cons and shows).

Review - NTK now
Quick Rating:
Overall - 5
Content - 5
Writing - 5
Regularity - 5
Extras - 5

E-zine Description: the weekly high-tech sarcastic, gossip update for the UK. If more than 60% of your life is spent online or dealing with exotic technology - or you wish that it was, NTK now would be a good thing to read. It's a weekly e-mail newsletter looking at things from a UK Net perspective. And that's a crying shame, what with the dearth of US-slanted news and content in these parts.

Frequency of Publication: weekly

Subscription Instructions:
Address:
majordomo@unfortu.net
Message Body: subscribe ntknow

WWW location: http://www.ntk.net/

Contact Information:
e-mail: terry@spesh.com

Cost: Free

Review

These nice chaps were the first to submit their e-mail-zine for review in the Open Road. I'd already had them on the list to review so all I did was move them up the list. Always good for a chuckle and regulary informative, NTK now brings a nicely different perspective to tech news. NTK now has been reviewed in Wired, iD Magazine and the Guardian and regulary scoops the main stream press on hip news.

Rating:

Content - 5
Loaded up with nasty (and usually hilarious) barbs and the latest tech news as seen from the UK. Other than the Hard News, regular features include: Geek Media (TV and Movie Listings), Meme Pool (Latest un/infectious mind bugs), Event Queue (interesting happenings), Anti-News (all the news not fit to print) and Tracking (changes and refound news?).

Writing Quality/Style - 5
I always chuckle. Technology is not supposed to fun dammit! okokok NTK now does not lose sight of its need to inform, but does so in a highly engaging and entertaining tone.

Regularity - 5
Every week - though given Danny O'Brien's (one third of the "special projects team") self deprecation you'd think it'd never get out...

Extras - 5
Standard mailings list info included, along with a Web site well organized for back issues and article searches. Each issue has an excellent set of links backing up most of the current news and info.

Overall - 5
Like the above description says technology news is dominated by US publications and points of view. The way I look at it: even if NTK now had half the content and info they do, it would be worth the read for the change in perspective. And of course, the humour never hurts.

INDEX

Text © Todd Kuipers, 1998, 1999. Part of the original Sideroad.
The new Sideroad is now receiving traffic at www.sideroad.com.