We hold this truth to be self-evident: The computer was made for magazine publishing.

Take our cover story, “Life-defying Acts.” Washington editor Beth Spring, who coauthored this look at the legal snares of end-of-life decision-making, used her IBM-PC to communicate no fewer than three drafts to eager editors in Carol Stream. For a while, a flashing, green “MESSAGE PENDING” on one of our display terminals first thing in the morning usually meant that Beth wanted some editorial attention: she had a question or concern about some aspect of the article’s development.

In turn, our responses were typed on an Atex terminal and “magically” (note the high-tech language used by most “knowledgeable” editors) transmitted via phone lines to D.C.; and so our conversations went until the story was ready for production.

No paper.

No postage.

No personal contact: which meant our last step was to call Beth to make sure we had read her messages loud and clear.

A postscript. Editor-at-large Philip Yancey is another writer who sends his contributions by computer (a DEC Rainbow). And his “Sin” article was no exception. As a Chicago resident, however, Philip works hard not to limit his interaction with CT to strictly PC communication: he gladly discusses any and all of his columns or articles over lunch.

HAROLD SMITH, Managing Editor

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