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Model Engineers Workshop Lost The Plot

Has Model Engineers Workshop Gone Downhill?

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OldMetaller11/06/2017 08:39:54
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I am not going to indulge in rudeness or negative criticism of either Neil or David, but I want to make some observations:

I have read, and later subscribed and read, MEW throughout David and Neil's watches. No, it isn't perfect; I'm sure Neil still cringes over the recent issue number error, I certainly cringe at the proof-reading errors that slip through, but I continue to read and enjoy the magazine.

I can understand that a speciality title like MEW doesn't make enough money to employ sufficient people to ensure that every issue goes out error-free, I'm just glad that it still does go out.

I am also aware that, for me at least, the personality of the Editor is important in creating the feeling of involvement and inclusiveness that I enjoy when I regularly read a magazine. Without wanting to imply negative criticism, I will say that both the advent of Neil, and over at ME, Diane, has enhanced my experience of both of the magazines.

I can't put my finger on what Diane has done, but I know that for me, ME is a better magazine now. With Neil I think it is the wide-ranging interests that he has brought along, coupled with his ability to talk naturally about himself and his interests.

I attribute this to the ability of both of them to project their own personalities in their writings. Yes, the 'personal touch'.

For an example of this, I would cite the differing experiences for me in reading Martin Evans' writings, compared to reading LBSC's writings.

I have never met any of the people I have named, but for me, the interesting, and indeed essential point is that some of them I feel I know.

To repeat myself, I mean no negative criticism by any of this. A belief of mine is that, when faced with negativity, if you look hard enough, you will find something positive.

Thank you.

Regards,

John.

David Clark 111/06/2017 09:08:11
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Posted by John Flack on 10/06/2017 12:57:51:

I find David Clarks remarks unpleasant. The MEW editor has advised the forum that he has neither time, budget or skill to check the content of the magazine. Nuff said???

Where was this posted? I could do with a laugh.

SillyOldDuffer11/06/2017 09:28:14
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Posted by Alistair Grant 4 on 10/06/2017 14:29:31:

Surprising that an editor has neither time, budget or skill to check the publication he is responsible for?

I'm in the happy position of being able to compare my version of 'Measuring Minute Power Levels with a Dynamometer' to the article Neil published. It's clear from the changes that someone read it carefully before unleashing it.

One change is editorial, at one point I refer to a “drug-dealer’s” digital micro-scale. It's not difficult to understand why that attempt at humour got the chop.

Another example is the fix applied where I left out a full stop. 'The Microcontroller is an Arduino Uno bought online from www.arduino.cc As the website also ...' The editor fixed this with a comma, '...bought online from www.arduino.cc, as the website also...' Now, is the correction a mistake or an improvement? (I don't care.)

What's scary is how easily mistakes slip into print despite elaborate precautions. A Bible was printed in 1632 with a word missing from the seventh commandment: 'Thou shalt commit adultery.' They weren't alone, 'Know ye not that the unrighteous shall inherit the Kingdom of God?' and - most appropriate to this discussion - 'the printers have persecuted me without a cause'.

Dave

John Stevenson11/06/2017 10:01:10
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No one is laughing with you David 🤡
Michael Gilligan11/06/2017 10:08:06
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Posted by David Clark 1 on 11/06/2017 09:08:11:

... I could do with a laugh.

.

David,

I will leave John Flack to quote his reference; but meanwhile

this old thread from 2013 might raise a smile. **LINK**

http://www.model-engineer.co.uk/forums/postings.asp?th=85089

MichaelG.

KWIL11/06/2017 10:09:08
3426 forum posts
66 photos

The quality of photographs leaves a lot to be desired. MEW 256 pg 14 -> Photo 15, Photo 16 are so out of focus that it is difficult to see the action. In these days of digital photography, inexcusable. If I were the Editor, I would have asked for better before publishing.

JasonB11/06/2017 10:32:52
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Strange photo 16 looks perfectly clear on my digital version.

As 15 is a machining action shot it is not so easy to ask for another without the author having to make a second part. Also do we really need to "see the action" of a flycutter when that is not what the article is about?

Andrew Johnston11/06/2017 10:34:10
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Posted by KWIL on 11/06/2017 10:09:08:

The quality of photographs leaves a lot to be desired. MEW 256 pg 14 -> Photo 15, Photo 16 are so out of focus that it is difficult to see the action.

Oeeeer, thought I'd better check my article for picture focus and text changes. I haven't checked every single word and punctuation mark, but the only change I found was 4" scale to four-inch scale, which seems slightly clumsy to me.

Andrew

IanT11/06/2017 10:35:14
1899 forum posts
184 photos

I was the Editor of my Society's Newsletter for about seven years, so whilst certainly not on par with ME or MEW, I can certainly sympathise with their Editors...

Many times I had very little material (in hand) to publish with a 'print' deadline looming. I will admit I used to write a fair amount of the content myself, sometimes ghosting for other people (with their permission) simply because they either didn't have the time, confidence or ability to write an article themselves. I should add that within our membership, I am very far from being the best engineer or modeller. There are far better (and much more productive) people around than me but unfortunately, trying to persuade them to put pen to paper was just about impossible in most cases.

I also used to read (and re-read) all of the material (as did my wife) before sending it off to the printers but I could almost guarantee that when the Newsletters were delivered the very first page that I looked at would have a very obvious typo.

I also used to get complaints about the Newsletter from members but my solution was very simple. if they could do a better job, then they were very welcome to do so. Strangely, I never had anyone take me up on this generous offer.

Regards,

IanT

David Standing 111/06/2017 10:36:42
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Posted by Michael Gilligan on 11/06/2017 10:08:06:

Posted by David Clark 1 on 11/06/2017 09:08:11:

... I could do with a laugh.

.

David,

I will leave John Flack to quote his reference; but meanwhile

this old thread from 2013 might raise a smile. **LINK**

http://www.model-engineer.co.uk/forums/postings.asp?th=85089

MichaelG.

<snigger> wink 2

Andrew Johnston11/06/2017 10:39:45
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Posted by JasonB on 11/06/2017 10:32:52:

Strange photo 16 looks perfectly clear on my digital version.

In my print copy it is 15 and 18 that are out of focus.

When taking workshop pictures, for publication or otherwise, I normally download to the computer and check for focus, content and so on before disturbing the setup. I take multiple shots so that I can discard those that are poor or unclear. By far the majority of pictures taken are for my own use, but there's no point in clogging up the computer with duff pictures.

Andrew

Wayne Ward11/06/2017 10:51:46
12 forum posts
Well, I write professionally for a few different publications. All of the articles that I write are checked badly by me, and it is very difficult to see all of the errors. The articles are then both peer-reviewed and sub-edited and error-checked. The magazines have a advertising content which takes up about 50% of the lovely pages. They have a circulation of a few thousand copies. They cost 15 quid or more per issue. We are lucky to have this magazine available, written by enthusiasts for us to learn from. I'm certainly very grateful.

Edited By Wayne Ward on 11/06/2017 10:52:45

Neil Wyatt11/06/2017 11:01:35
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Posted by KWIL on 11/06/2017 10:09:08:

The quality of photographs leaves a lot to be desired. MEW 256 pg 14 -> Photo 15, Photo 16 are so out of focus that it is difficult to see the action. In these days of digital photography, inexcusable. If I were the Editor, I would have asked for better before publishing.

As the article was submitted to MEW in 2004 and was one of the 'lost ones' I managed to link to an author recently it wasn't really reasonable to ask Will to recreate the machining process...

Neil

John Stevenson11/06/2017 11:31:16
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Take 12 people off this forum in any order. Give each of them a large cardboard box with submitted work and say a 2 month deadline to produce a magazine.
Any guesses how many of the 12 issues we would see, on time, in that 12 month period.

This is a serious question and requires an answer
Ady111/06/2017 11:45:58
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I still think you should have an online submission system which resides here like a forum and can only be accessed by the author and editor

Scrabbling through boxes of paperwork is doing it the hard way IMO

NIALL HORN11/06/2017 11:51:29
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Plus 1 for the comments by OldMetaller and JS - and as someone with considerable experience of type-setting for printing I know just how difficult it is to spot absolutely all typos!

Niall

Ady111/06/2017 12:07:23
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Paper submissions can be digitised by dropping them through a scanner, you can do 1000 A4 pages an hour with one of these drop through units

They also do "long stuff" that's 6 feet long etc, scan and stitch the big stuff

Once the work is turned into 1's and 0's things are a lot simpler

Ady111/06/2017 13:04:50
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As far as typos are concerned software can do much of the legwork via OCR

Mr Stevenson introduced me to this amazing software

(They are up to 14 now but I've only ever used 12)

Nick_G11/06/2017 13:12:55
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Posted by Michael Gilligan on 11/06/2017 10:08:06:

Posted by David Clark 1 on 11/06/2017 09:08:11:

... I could do with a laugh.

.

David,

I will leave John Flack to quote his reference; but meanwhile

this old thread from 2013 might raise a smile. **LINK**

http://www.model-engineer.co.uk/forums/postings.asp?th=85089

MichaelG.

.

Could be worse. Imagine finding yourself being sat next to the OP at a wedding or a dinner party. devil

Nick laugh

Neil Wyatt11/06/2017 13:24:30
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The number of paper submissions I get for MEW is very small, a few articles, some letters - mostly reader's ads! The LAL brochure was a scan so I put it through OCR.

To be honest, there are more errors in OCR'd text than anything I have ever received electronically, but the the amount I need ton use it doesn't justify anything more than basic software.

Thanks for the supportive comments, folks.

Neil

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