Back in 1990, when I graduated college with a degree in technical journalism, I would have said, accurately and logically, that I was a magazine editor. No more and no less. At that time, of course, the Internet was still more science fiction than fact, and communication technology consisted primarily of telephone (landline), fax, newspaper, magazine, radio and television.
If you were a composites professional back then, you likely read Advanced Composites magazine or a similar early industry title (alas, HPC did not yet exist), and you attended composites industry tradeshows and conferences to find new technology you could use to manufacture composite parts and structures. If you’re nostalgic, you likely look back on those days as simple and straightforward, uncluttered by the digital media landscape. Or, if you’ve adapted well, you might look back on those days and wonder how anyone got anything done. If you’re like me, you probably do a little of both.
Although I still say, 23 years later, that I’m the editor of a technical trade magazine, that doesn’t begin to describe all that I do. When pressed, or engaged in a quasi-philosophical discussion about the “future of media,” I’ll tell you that what I really am — what all of us at HPC are — is information managers. It’s our job to seek, collect and distribute information about composites manufacturing and then present it to our audience (you) in whatever form is most convenient.
The keyword, of course, is “form,” because we are no longer mere magazine publishers. Many of you still read the printed magazine, and this is, still, the dominant form, but you might also be reading this in our digital magazine or online at our Web site. You likely also receive our e-newsletter, the CompositesWorld Weekly, and you might also follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Linked In.
We are now adding a new form to our communications arsenal, the CompositesWorld Blog. You can find it easily on the home page of the CW site: www.compositesworld.com. The CW Blog will feature short, pithy, creative reports from myself and other HPC writers and editors about the goings on in the composites industry — consider the CW Blog our subjective, biased commentary on the news, events, people and technology that are shaping the composites community.
Why a blog? The real upside is its interactive nature. It’s not just about what we think. We know that you composites professionals are keen observers of the trends shaping this industry. The blog provides an opportunity to put your interests, insights and intelligence to work. It enables you to chime in with comments of your own about the subjects we explore. You may agree, disagree, add to, embellish, dissect, argue, defend or question as you see fit. You may respond to the comments of others and see how others respond to yours.
So I encourage you to make haste to the new CompositesWorld Blog and become a part of the conversation. As always, if you have ideas or suggestions to help us serve your information needs better, I’m all ears.