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December 7, 2009 Xmas iMix

The iCat was hard at work on presentations & presenters for our December meeting, only inhibited by the cold weather that has a numbing effect on his softfur program. We have been working on getting a Genius (of the Apple kind, of course) but that may not happen - however, there will be cake, there will be shareware, there will be presentations of ArtRage software (that's a cheap painting and illustrating tool and we have a copy to give away), MPEG screenclip & Flip4Mac, how to copy a copy-protected DVD, as well as Shareware demos and a pile of stuff to raffle off. A PDF of Dave Strom's Converting Video presentation is available here.

For those of you expecting a printed newsletter this week, many apologies that owing to the temporary indisposition of the newsletter editor we were unable to produce one this month..... but we're happy to say that he seems to be well on the way back to his old self and normal service should resume in the new year.



November 9, 2009 Constant Contact
If you've ever subscribed to or received an email newsletter (including the SMUG newsletter we've been sending out in the past few months), the chances are that it was created with Constant Contact, the original innovator in this field and still the market leader. All sorts of organizations - restaurants, religious groups, clubs, schools, retail stores, etc. - use their flexible templates (over 400 at the last count) to send out email newsletters and promotions. You can use them for other things too, though - cards. party invitations, seasonal greetings, events of all kinds. Our presenter at the November 9 SMUG meeting, Stu Carty, is the Regional Development Director of Constant Contact and runs seminars in the software all over the Bay Area. He'll be demonstrating what can be done, how easy it is to do it, and the many uses to which you can put it - maybe you'll be wondering how you could ever have managed your [fill in suitable blank for Christmas newsletter, etc. here] without it! Check them out at www.constantcontact.com.

Plus 12 handy Shareware items from Owen Saxton and a the usual raffle.

October 5, 2009 Eye-Fi, iWeb, & the search for Extra-Terrestrial Life - it's all here!
Eye-Fi makes your camera wireless - your photos fly effortlessly onto your computer or iPhone - see more at eye.fi (it's not really in Finland!). Also, Dave Strom moves his website from one virtual place to another and Dave Aston shows you how to let your computer go on working - looking for massive prime numbers, radio sigmals fromelswhere in the galaxy, that sort of thing - while you go off and do something else, attend SMUG meetings, whatever....

September 14, 2009 25th Anniversary Meeting, Derrick Story & more, much more...
We have cake, we have personal reminiscence, and when that fails we have pictures and even video, suitable digitized for the 21st century of course, from 25 years and even further back in time. Watch this space for more details - and yes, it's the 14th September, not the 7th, which is Labor Day, when paradoxically we are supposed to be resting from all labors, even SMUG.

It’s been a quarter of a century since Ridley’s Scott’s famous 30-second, 1-time only TV spot during the 1984 Super Bowl announcing the birth of the Macintosh. The baby’s specs: Motorola 68000 processor, 128 Kilobytes of RAM, 9-inch monochrome screen. No internal hard disk or expansion. Boot via 400kb floppies. $2,500. The output: bit-mapped graphics, a new microcomputer revolution, and a piece of history.

The excitement and acclaim for the Mac was immediate and first adopters and interested participants craved to demo, learn, and share. They banded together in groups like the Stanford and Berkeley Macintosh User Groups that filled a seminal role for the quickly expanding Macintosh community.

Our group met on the Stanford campus until the crowds got so large we had to move elsewhere. Over the years we have met in several accommodating, nearby venues including our current location at SLAC. This site brings its own special piece of history to the table: the start of the microcomputer revolution and the genesis of Apple Computer. The two Steve’s after all were tooling around in the Homebrew Club at SLAC years before the Mac.

At SMUG we have enjoyed an array of memorable gatherings: visits from Mac original Bill Atkinson; writers David Pogue, and Derrick Story; technology legislator Joe Simitian, Homebrew Club members, and our displays of vintage Apple products at MacWorld.

So join on us Monday to celebrate 25 years of Macintosh and SMUG, the formative days of the computer revolution at SLAC, and the efforts of all SMUG members present and past who have made this group so relevant and enjoyable to so many. Happy birthday Mac; happy birthday SMUG.

Derrick Story has written too many books to mention, most notably the iPhoto Missing Manuals with David Pogue and some invaluable Pocket Guides such as The Digital Photography Companion and The Photoshop CS4 Companion for Photographers. He also has a lively website - thedigitalstory.com - where you can listen to his photo podcasts and read photography tips. If so inclined, you can even follow him on Twitter!
Apart from all that, however, he is also a popular and entertaining speaker, always with some new tip to impart that you probably had not thought of. He may discuss the simple - how to take a simple shot out of your hotel window using a cheap pocket camera, to the arcane delights of Aperture and Lightroom techniques, paerhaps even delving into how Apple’s Snow Leopard will affect the digital photography world. We may have some of his books to give away, too!

August 10, 2009 Mariner Software and more.....
Mariner have been making cool software in Minneapolis for the Mac since 1990, beginning with a spreadsheet program called Pascal that was bundled with Word Perfect in Japan as a rival to the steadily ubiquitous Microsoft Office. Now they have a robust Office suite called MarinerWrite and MarinerCalc that we'll be demoing and giving away. We've also got Paperless, their digital documents manager for all your receipts and documents (you will need a scanner, though); Montage, their acclaimed Screenwriting Software ("from the ability to import and export Final Draft documents, to using custom, pre-formatted templates for film, TV, and theater, Montage guides both the first time screenwriter or the seasoned veteran, from start to finish"); and an intriguing program called MacGourmet that allows you to organize your recipe collection like you organize your photos and music - say goodbye to the binder or recipe card collection!
We have all of these to give away to lucky raffle winners.

Mac HomePage to iWeb
The demise of HomePage has left a lot of people wondering what to do with the pages they created with it. Dave Strom has a solution.

Owen Saxton brings a zany collection of free and nearly-free apps for your delectation.

Lorrie Bleiler
Please see the news page for more information.

July 6, 2009 Cooliris
Relax from the heat of the July 4th weekend with the coolest of cool apps. Come and see how Cooliris is revolutionizing the way we discover and interact with content on the web.

Cooliris advances visual navigation for the Web, Desktop, and Mobile. Its flagship product is the Cooliris 3D Wall, which is designed to help users consume the overabundance of rich media on the Web and discover great content. Cooliris enables a faster and more intuitive browsing experience for images, videos, news, games, and social networking websites.

Cooliris is headquartered in Palo Alto, California. For more information, visit www.cooliris.com.

June 1, 2009 Fastmac
Mac upgrades, battery chargers, extended life batteries for your laptop and iPod, processor upgrades, new optical drives, etc, etc., even T shirts, fastmac will be here to demo them all.

May 4, 2009 Avery
Kathy Garrigan presents Avery DesignPro for Mac, software that lets you print on Avery products on your Macintosh. Like business cards, label sheets, greeting cards, iron-ons, and so on. Both Lorrie & Dave have used the CD. The business card
template and labels are very easy to use. Lorrie hopes to have some samples of the things that she has used the Avery templates for - cards, T-shirts and wine labels. Not only is this app very versatile - it's free!

April 6, 2009 MacSpeech & Drobo
Voice recognition/Dictation software for the Mac has made great strides in recent years, led by the MacSpeech, which brought the clumsy MacSpeech Dictate into what pundits (and numerous reviewers on Amazon.com) refer to as "prime time". It's over a year since I saw David Pogue give an impressive demo of this software at MacWorld and it has now moved up to version 1.3.

Jay Gonzales is Senior Product/Marketing Manager at MacSpeech and has 15 years of experience working on award-winning Macintosh software. He'll be here to demo why MacSpeech Dictate is the premier speech recognition solution for the Macintosh. MacSpeech Dictate provides a whole new way to interact with your Mac. Instead of typing, use your voice to input text; rather than clicking your mouse, just speak commands.

MacSpeech Dictate provides amazing speech recognition accuracy and easily works with the applications you already have, including Apple apps like Mail, iChat, iPhoto, and more. MacSpeech Dictate even controls your Mac; just speak a command and MacSpeech Dictate executes it for you. MacSpeech Dictate requires a minimal amount of training and is as fun, productive, and intuitive to use as the Mac itself.

We've had various backup demonstrations in the recent past, which hopefully has encouraged you to do some kind of back up of your computer files. Drobo has a solution that they say finally provides reliable and automated storage for your rapidly growing data and image library. I do know someone who swears by it, and if you take a belt & suspenders approach to preserving your digital world then Drobo is definitely the solution for you. Get peace of mind, knowing your irreplaceable digital assets are safe. With the convenience of both FireWire 800 and USB 2.0, the award-winning Drobo storage solution can replace your stack of hard drives and protect your data against a hard drive failure. And as your data library grows, don’t worry about running out of storage space - simply increase the capacity by adding a larger drive on the fly!

Chris Black will be here to show how Drobo takes the stress out of storage. You can learn more about the revolutionary Drobo and see how it can change your feelings about primary storage and back-up by watching their short Drobo Demo Video Tour.

Also this month, Shareware will look at some of your options for exploring the hidden options of MacOS X and its Applications. We'll cover some GUI utilities (eg TinkerTool, Property List Editor), command-line tools such as defaults and plutil and take a look at the wonders of AppleScript. Plus, of course, there'll be a cornucopia of goodies to give away in our raffle.

March 2, 2009 Vincent Isola on Digital Photography

Vincent IsolaGenesis Photography has been at its present location producing breathtaking images for discriminating clientele since 1986. Conveniently located in downtown Mountain View, the studio is a state of the art photographic facility, second to none in the bay area.

They have been capturing images digitally since 1998. This process provides instant feedback and allows their clients to help shape the general direction of the photo session real time, making it a very collaborative and fun experience for everyone!

The principal, Vincent Isola, has managed the studio and it's photographers since its inception. He has won numerous awards for his work and teaches digital and lighting techniques to photographers throughout the country.

Vin's work and articles have been featured in many publications, including; Architecture Digest, Modern Bride, Martha Stewart Weddings, Designer's Illustrated, The Professional Photographer, Studio Photography, Brides.com, Wedding's West, Pennisula Magazine, Shutterbug and Loan Collections Books.

His corporate clients include Adobe Systems, Apple Computer, Bank of America, Cisco Systems, Hewlett-Packard, Hitachi, IBM, KPMG, Laser-card Systems, Microsoft, Motorola, National Semiconductor, Oracle, Pottery Barn, 3 Ware, Silicon Graphics, Sun Microsystems, Stanford University, Velodyne Acoustics, and Xerox

Recently Vin has been selected to participate in Canon's "Printmaster's Program", along with a handful of photographers in North America. According to Canon, "Printmasters are among some of the top photographers in the world working in diverse photographic disciplines such as journalism, nature, fashion, fine-art, portrait and commercial photography"

If you are inspired by Vin's talk, we have a pile of Digital Photography books to give away in our raffle, courtesy of O'Reilly, from the Derrick Story's portable Photoshop tips to detailed help on how to make the most of Photoshop CS4's Channels and Masks.

February 2, 2009 Storyist
Steve Shepard, the developer of Storyist, whom you may remember from a brief appearance last year and/or visiting his booth at MacWorld, will be here to show off the features of the upcoming Storyist 2.

Storyist is a powerful story development tool for novelists and screenwriters. With an intuitive interface that puts you in control, it provides:
• A word processor with a page layout view and support for headers, footers, and style sheets so you can produce submission-ready manuscripts and scripts.
• A storyboard with customizable story sheets so you can track your plot, characters, and settings.
• A project manager with fast, project-wide search capabilities so you can keep your writing organized and accessible.

At one time it was employed mainly by budding novelists, but more and more users are hopeful screenwriters who have discovered this tool along with the Mac. You can find more details at Storyist.com - get a big discount if you buy online using coupon code SMUG2009.

January 2009 MacWorld Expo
Nico Bellamy at the SMUGBooth
Nico Bellamy mans the SMUG booth on Tuesday morning
SMUG booth

More pictures from MacWorld on the News Page»
There is no SMUG meeting in January - instead we are at MacWorld on Tuesday January 6 - visit us at our own booth in the main hall - booths 226-230 (far left corner from where you enter)! For those of you suffering from meeting withdrawal, we have been invited to the Silicon Valley User Group meeting on Monday January 12th at Apple HQ in Cupertino (get information on how to get there and more details at www.svmug.org) where Slife Labs from Georgia will be presenting direct from MacWorld Expo.

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