WASHINGTON—The 142-year-old Scientific American has undergone a facelift to make its contents more attractive to a wider audience.

The September issue of the magazine contains numerous changes in graphics, typography and organization, according to Editor Jonathan Piel. Piel said the new design continues a trend toward shorter, easier-to-read articles and columns and more compelling illustrations and photographs that began when he became editor in 1984 and has continued under its new owners. The West German publishing company of Verlagsgruppe Georg von Holtzbrinck bought the magazine and related publishing activities for $52.6 million in July 1986.

“As the leading serious magazine about science, we needed to address a larger segment of the professional leadership in our society,” Piel said. “We know our readers have a lot of distractions, and we want to interest them in what we have to offer, starting with the cover and carrying through the entire contents.”


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