Smashing Magazine is a prominent online magazine that focuses on web design and development. Its articles also cover various digital and traditional art forms, photography, advice for web designers, and showcases of contemporary design.
Smashing Magazine's archives number in the hundreds of articles, and are an excellent resource for watching design trends or simply picking up a few odd bits of design knowledge here and there. I tend to get the most out of the "Inspiration" posts that are made roughly once a week: they show off about 50 works that the site's staff has collected from around the web and often branch out from the magazine's focus of web design into other art forms.
Smashing Magazine's user interface is very pleasant. Its sections are thoughtfully grouped into a few major categories and accessible from drop-down menus at the top of every page. There is also a very clear separation between the content of the site and other parts of it. Articles always occupy the left half of the page, while advertisements and the magazine's copious links to its most popular articles are neatly confined to the right column. This allows the advertisements to be present on the page--and I'm sure ensures that at least some of them garner views--while maintaining the integrity of the articles and not disgusting the reader as many article ad placements do online.
One of the most intriguing new features of Smashing Magazine is its newly created Smashing Network. The network aggregates posts from around a dozen other web design oriented blogs and magazines including Designm.ag, Tutorial9, and FreelanceFolder. These posts are then displayed across all of the sites in the Smashing Network, increasing the profile of all of the sites.
The quality of Smashing Magazine's posts is phenomenal, and I find myself recommending the site, or specific articles from it, to friends interested in web design all the time. Now I have recommended it to Everything2. Use it well.