It's no fun being negative about things. So, on this matter, I have valiantly resisted making comment. But, in the end, I simply can't help myself.
These days, the magazine has half the page count it had when I first started buying it in the 1970s. But it gets worse. Look at what passes for content these days. We have here, on pages 22 and 23, a double page spread of utterly useless “art.”
It is said that a picture tells a thousand words. Not in this case. The “art” conveys absolutely zero information. And it's not even pretty. What's the point of it, other than to take up space? Nothing to read, nothing to enjoy, just two pages that deserve little more than a picosecond or two of one's time. They want us to pay for this?
And look at what follows. Content replete with text boxes in garish colours! Exactly the sort of thing that disgusts me in modern textbooks. So showy, so little substance. Dumbed down.
Yeah, ok, I know, S&T has been doing this for years now. This example was, for me, simply the straw that broke the camel's back, at least in terms of posting a comment.
If you think I'm passionate about all this, you're right. I grew up with S&T. When, as a teenager, I bought my first ever issue, I could barely understand a thing. Right ascension? What, in Heaven's name, is that? And this Hertzsprung–Russell diagram, what does it mean? Reading S&T was a bit of a struggle for me, but only at first, and it was fun, and I was learning, and I had huge respect for the folks who put that magazine together. And it was great to see the magazine actually getting even better over a number of years. Those days a gone. They still do some things well, but there is so little of that now. Alas.