The
word “magazine” is derived from the Arabic word “makhazin,” meaning
storehouse. Since Daniel Defoe published the world’s first English
magazine back in 1704, millions of magazines catering to nearly every
imaginable taste have been created and consumed, passed from person to
person in cafes, barber shops, libraries, and homes around the world.
If you’re wondering what cars people drove in the eighties or what was
in fashion thirty years ago, there’s a good chance that you’ll find
that answer in a magazine. Yet few magazine archives are currently
available online.

Today, we’re announcing an initiative to help
bring more magazine archives and current magazines online, partnering
with publishers to begin digitizing millions of articles from titles as
diverse as New York Magazine, Popular Mechanics, and Ebony. Are you a baseball history fanatic? Try a search for [hank aaron catching babe] on Google Book Search. You’ll find a link to a 1973 Ebony article
about Hank Aaron, written as he closed in on Babe Ruth’s original
record for career home runs. You can read the article in full color and
in its original context, just as you would in the printed magazine.
Scroll back a few pages, for example, and you’ll find a two-page spread
on 1973’s fall fashions. If you’d like to read further, you can click on “Browse all issues” to view issues from across the decades.

Explore other publications, like Popular Science, New York Magazine, or (for you physics enthusiasts) the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, to rediscover historical interviews, do-it-yourself articles, and even a piece on canine eyewear. In many cases, these magazines aren’t just history as history, but history as perspective — a way of understanding today.

You can search for magazines through Google Book Search. Try queries like [obama keynote convention], [hollywood brat pack] or [world’s most challenging crossword]
and you’ll find magazine articles alongside books results. Magazine
articles are tagged with the keyword “Magazine” on the search snippet.

Over
time, as we scan more articles, you’ll see more and more magazines
appear in Google Book Search results. Eventually, we’ll also begin
blending magazine results into our main Google.com search results, so
you may begin finding magazines you didn’t even know you were looking
for. For now you can restrict your search to magazines we’ve scanned by
trying an advanced search.

For years, we’ve worked to make as much information as possible accessible online, whether that information comes from books, newspapers, or images.
We think that bringing more magazines online is one more important step
toward our long-standing goal of providing access to all the world’s
information.

Posted by Dave Foulser, Software Engineer

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