Popular Science
Popular Science is an American monthly magazine
Magazines, periodicals, glossies or serials are publications, generally published on a regular schedule, containing a variety of articles. They are generally financed by advertising, by a purchase price, by pre-paid magazine subscriptions, or all three...

 founded in 1872 carrying articles for the general reader on science and technology subjects. Popular Science has won over 58 awards, including the ASME
American Society of Magazine Editors
The American Society of Magazine Editors is an industry trade group for editors of magazines published in the United States. The group advocates on behalf of member organizations with respect to First Amendment issues, and serves as a networking hub for editors and other industry employees...

 awards for its journalistic excellence in both 2003 (for General Excellence) and 2004 (for Best Magazine Section). PopSci has been translated into over 30 languages and goes out to at least 45 countries.

Early history

Popular Science Monthly was founded in May 1872 by Edward L. Youmans
Edward L. Youmans
Edward Livingston Youmans was an American scientific writer, editor, and lecturer and founder of Popular Science magazine.-Biography:...

 to disseminate scientific knowledge to the educated layman. Youmans had previously worked as an editor for the weekly Appleton's Journal and persuaded them to publish his new journal. Early issues were mostly reprints of English periodicals. The journal became an outlet for writings and ideas of Charles Darwin
Charles Darwin
Charles Robert Darwin FRS was an English naturalist. He established that all species of life have descended over time from common ancestry, and proposed the scientific theory that this branching pattern of evolution resulted from a process that he called natural selection.He published his theory...

, Thomas Henry Huxley, Louis Pasteur
Louis Pasteur
Louis Pasteur was a French chemist and microbiologist born in Dole. He is remembered for his remarkable breakthroughs in the causes and preventions of diseases. His discoveries reduced mortality from puerperal fever, and he created the first vaccine for rabies and anthrax. His experiments...

, Henry Ward Beecher
Henry Ward Beecher
Henry Ward Beecher was a prominent Congregationalist clergyman, social reformer, abolitionist, and speaker in the mid to late 19th century...

, Charles Sanders Peirce, William James
William James
William James was a pioneering American psychologist and philosopher who was trained as a physician. He wrote influential books on the young science of psychology, educational psychology, psychology of religious experience and mysticism, and on the philosophy of pragmatism...

, Thomas Edison
Thomas Edison
Thomas Alva Edison was an American inventor and businessman. He developed many devices that greatly influenced life around the world, including the phonograph, the motion picture camera, and a long-lasting, practical electric light bulb. In addition, he created the world’s first industrial...

, John Dewey
John Dewey
John Dewey was an American philosopher, psychologist and educational reformer whose ideas have been influential in education and social reform. Dewey was an important early developer of the philosophy of pragmatism and one of the founders of functional psychology...

 and James McKeen Cattell
James McKeen Cattell
James McKeen Cattell , American psychologist, was the first professor of psychology in the United States at the University of Pennsylvania and long-time editor and publisher of scientific journals and publications, most notably the journal Science...

. In 1877 William Jay Youmans
William Jay Youmans
William Jay Youmans was a United States scientist. He edited Popular Science Monthly for a time.-Biography:He was born at Milton, New York. He studied chemistry under his brother, Edward Livingston Youmans, and at Columbia and Yale, then took a course in medicine at New York University, and in...

, Edward's brother, joined Popular Science Monthly, and became editor-in-chief on Edward's death in 1887. The publisher, D. Appleton & Company
D. Appleton & Company
D. Appleton & Company was an American company founded by Daniel Appleton , who opened a general store which included books.- Timeline :* 1813 Relocated from Haverhill to Boston and imported books from England...

, was forced by economic reasons to sell the journal in 1900.

James McKeen Cattell became the editor in 1900 and the publisher in 1901. Cattell had a background in academics and continued publishing articles for educated readers. By 1915 the readership was declining and publishing a science journal was a financial challenge. In a September 1915 editorial, Cattell related these difficulties to his readers and that the journal had been "transferred" to a group that wanted the name for a general audience magazine. Next month the subscribers would receive a new journal titled Scientific Monthly
Scientific monthly
Scientific Monthly was a science magazine published from 1915 to 1957. Psychologist James McKeen Cattell was the original founder and editor. In 1957 Scientific Monthly was absorbed by Science....

that would continue the academic tradition. Scientific Monthly was published until 1958 when it was absorbed into Science.

The Modern Publishing Company had purchased Electrician and Mechanic
Electrician and Mechanic
Electrician and Mechanic was an American science and technology magazine published from 1890 to January 1914 when it merged with Modern Electrics to become Modern Electrics & Mechanics. The new publisher, Modern Publishing, began a series of magazine mergers and title changes so numerous that...

magazine in 1914 and over the next two years merged several magazines together into a science magazine for a general audience. The magazine had a series of name changes: Modern Electrics and Mechanics, Popular Electricity and Modern Mechanics, Modern Mechanics and finally World's Advance. The publishers were still looking for a new name so they purchased Popular Science Monthly. The October 1915 issue was titled Popular Science Monthly and World's Advance. The volume number (Vol. 87, No. 4) was that of Popular Science but the content was that of World's Advance. The new editor was Waldemar Kaempffert
Waldemar Kaempffert
Waldemar Kaempffert was a US science writer and museum director.Waldemar Kaempffert was born and raised in New York City. He received his B.S. from the City College of New York in 1897. Thereafter he was employed by Scientific American, first as a translator , then as managing editor...

, a former editor of Scientific American
Scientific American
Scientific American is a popular science magazine. It is notable for its long history of presenting science monthly to an educated but not necessarily scientific public, through its careful attention to the clarity of its text as well as the quality of its specially commissioned color graphics...


The change in Popular Science Monthly was dramatic. The old version was a scholarly journal that had eight to ten articles in a 100 page issue. There would be ten to twenty photographs or illustrations. The new version had hundreds of short, easy to read articles with hundreds of illustrations. Editor Kaempffert was writing for "the home craftsman and hobbyist who wanted to know something about the world of science." The circulation doubled in the first year. Currently (March 2010), the October–December 1915 issues are missing from the [Google Books] online archive - the only such omission besides the rolling one-year delay in making recent issues available online.

From 1935 to 1949, the magazine sponsored a series of short films
Popular Science (film)
Popular Science was a series of short films, produced by Jerry Fairbanks and released by Paramount Pictures.The Popular Science film series is a Hollywood entertainment production - the only attempt by the movie industry to chronicle the progress of science, industry and popular culture during the...

, produced by Jerry Fairbanks
Jerry Fairbanks
Gerald Bertram "Jerry" Fairbanks was a producer and director in the Hollywood motion picture and television industry....

 and released by Paramount Pictures
Paramount Pictures
Paramount Pictures Corporation is an American film production and distribution company, located at 5555 Melrose Avenue in Hollywood. Founded in 1912 and currently owned by media conglomerate Viacom, it is America's oldest existing film studio; it is also the last major film studio still...


Recent history

On January 25, 2007, Time Warner
Time Warner
Time Warner is one of the world's largest media companies, headquartered in the Time Warner Center in New York City. Formerly two separate companies, Warner Communications, Inc...

 sold this magazine, along with 17 other special interest magazines, to Bonnier Magazine Group. On September 24, 2008, Australian publishing company Australian Media Properties (part of the WW Media Group) launched a local version of Popular Science. It is a monthly magazine, like its American counterpart, and uses content from the American version of the magazine as well as local material. Australian Media Properties also launched http://www.popsci.com.au/ at the same time, a localised version of the Popular Science website.


On March 27, 2011, Popular Science magazine sold the 10,000th subscription to its iPad edition, nearly six weeks after accepting Apple's terms for selling subs on its tablet.


In August 2009, Popular Science launched a free iPhone app called PopSci.com, which delivers content from their Web site. The app got a redesign and major update in November 2010.

Popular Science+

In early 2010, Bonnier partnered with London-based design firm BERG to create Mag+, a magazine publishing platform for tablets. In April 2010, Popular Science+, the first title on the Mag+ platform, launched in the iTunes store the same day the iPad launched. The app contains all the content in the print version as well as added content and digital-only extras. Bonnier has since launched several more titles on the Mag+ platform, including Popular Photography+ and Transworld Snowboarding+.

Popular Science Predictions Exchange

In July 2007, Popular Science launched the Popular Science Predictions EXchange
Popular Science Predictions Exchange
Popular Science Predictions Exchange was an online virtual Prediction market run as part of the Popular Science website. The application was designed by the same group behind the Hollywood Stock Exchange using their virtual specialist application. Users traded virtual currency, known as POP$,...

 (PPX). People were able to place virtual bets on what the next innovations in technology
Technology is the making, usage, and knowledge of tools, machines, techniques, crafts, systems or methods of organization in order to solve a problem or perform a specific function. It can also refer to the collection of such tools, machinery, and procedures. The word technology comes ;...

, the environment, and science
Science is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge in the form of testable explanations and predictions about the universe...

 would be. Bets have included whether Facebook
Facebook is a social networking service and website launched in February 2004, operated and privately owned by Facebook, Inc. , Facebook has more than 800 million active users. Users must register before using the site, after which they may create a personal profile, add other users as...

 would have an initial public offering
Initial public offering
An initial public offering or stock market launch, is the first sale of stock by a private company to the public. It can be used by either small or large companies to raise expansion capital and become publicly traded enterprises...

 by 2008, when a touchscreen iPod
IPod touch
The iPod Touch is a portable media player, personal digital assistant, handheld game console, and Wi-Fi mobile device designed and marketed by Apple Inc. The iPod Touch adds the multi-touch graphical user interface to the iPod line...

 would be launched, and whether Dongtan
Dongtan is a plan for a new eco-city on the island of Chongming in Shanghai, China. The name of the city literally translates as "East Beach".-Population:...

, China's eco-city, would be inhabited by 2010. The PPX shut down in 2009.

Television-Future Of...

Popular Science's Future Of... show premiered on Monday, August 10, 2009 on the Science Channel. The show is concerned with the future of technology and science in a particular topic area that varies from week to week. As of December 2009, a new episode is premiered every Monday.

Popular Science on Google Books

Since March 5, 2010, all Popular Science issues since the first issue of May 1872 are available for free on Google Books.


Dates Publisher
1872 – 1900 D. Appleton & Company
D. Appleton & Company
D. Appleton & Company was an American company founded by Daniel Appleton , who opened a general store which included books.- Timeline :* 1813 Relocated from Haverhill to Boston and imported books from England...

1900 – 1901 McClure, Philips and Company
McClure's or McClure's Magazine was an American illustrated monthly periodical popular at the turn of the 20th century. The magazine is credited with creating muckraking journalism. Ida Tarbell's series in 1902 exposing the monopoly abuses of John D...

1901 – 1915 Science Press
1915 – 1924 Modern Publishing Company
1924 – 1967 Popular Science Publishing Company
1967 – 1973 Popular Science Publishing Company, subsidiary of Times Mirror
Los Angeles Times
The Los Angeles Times is a daily newspaper published in Los Angeles, California, since 1881. It was the second-largest metropolitan newspaper in circulation in the United States in 2008 and the fourth most widely distributed newspaper in the country....

1973 – 2000 Times Mirror Company
2000 – 2007 Time Inc.
Time Inc.
Time Inc. is a subsidiary of the media conglomerate Time Warner, the company formed by the 1990 merger of the original Time Inc. and Warner Communications. It publishes 130 magazines, most notably its namesake, Time...

2007 – present Bonnier Magazine Group

Sources: American Mass-Market Magazines The Wall Street Journal and New York Post.

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.