Cover of the November 1955 issue of Science Digest in its original digest-sized format.
Science Digest was first published in January 1937 in an 8 x 5 inch digest size format of about 100 pages. Edited by G.W. Stamm., it was targeted at persons with a high school education level. It contained short articles about general science often excerpted from other publications in the style of Reader's Digest.
In November 1980 the magazine was expanded to an 11 x 8 inch glossy page format with full-length articles and color pictures targeted at a college educated reader. The new version was largely the creation of its then editor Scott DeGarmo. It was issued bi-monthly with circulation of about 500,000 copies. At first it tended to favor breathless cover lines, and often turned to pseudoscience topics, including spontaneous human combustion and UFOs. Unable to compete with more serious publications, such as Discover and Omni, the magazine ceased publication in 1986.
The magazine briefly re-appeared as a quarterly in 1987; returning to the original small "digest" format, with many short articles and snippets of science information. This final relaunch lasted only one year.
Omega Science Digest
An Australian edition under the title Omega Science Digest began in January 1981 and had a circulation of 40,000. Omega, unlike its American counterpart, carried two original fiction stories per issue.
- Ashley, Michael (2007). "Super Science". Gateways to Forever: The Story of the Science-Fiction Magazines, 1970-1980. Liverpool University Press. p. 373. ISBN 9781846310027.
- Garfield, Eugene (August 31, 1981). "Science Digest -- New Look, New Personality" (PDF). Essays of an Information Scientist 5: 218–221. Retrieved 2013-12-16.
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