Getting to Know Your Mac

        New to Mac?  You'll want to read on for John Carter's intro to Mac.  He begins, "It's really tough figuring out what to do with a new computer, especially when all the user guides and tutorials are on the Internet now.
         "New Mac owners often ask, 'Which book do I buy?' The answer isn't simple. There is no one book that has everything in it that you will ever need to know that is also light enough to carry and user friendly for the newbie.
        "Go to the used book store or the thrift store and get anything - even if it's written for an older version of your operating system and a completely different Mac machine. It's a start. The basics are almost always the same - how to use the mouse and how to navigate in any application.
        "However, for applications such as iPhoto, iTunes, Mail, Pages, Keynote, and so on, you have to have the book that was written for your version of the operating system; the hardware type (desktop, laptop, iMac) in this case doesn't matter.

        "If you are able to get on the Internet, you don't need a book. You just need patience to sit in front of your computer and find the tutorials you need.
        " Let's make that easy for starters.
        "The first place to go to get help with your new Apple device (any Apple device) is
        "Once there, you select the device type you want help for. Let's say it's for your new iMac. Then you would select the Mac icon.
        "Let's say it's the Intel-based iMac.  Select that.  On the next page, there are really only two categories you need to view (as a Newbie).  They are 'Getting Started' and "How To.'

        "If this is your first computer, select anything that appeals to you under 'Getting started.' If you're switching from a Windows machine to a Mac, you probably should start with the link 'Switch 101' and then back to any of the others according to what appeals to you. On that same page, down at the bottom is a link to 'Cheat Sheet.' Please, go to that page and print it out, then fill in the blanks. On that page, you are given all the help you need to fill in the answers to the kinds of questions people will ask you about your computer."

        John notes, "One of the questions not on that form is, 'How do you access your email?'  If you access your email by going onto the Web with a browser, what is the name of the service that you connect to? Is it Gmail, Yahoo,  PeoplePC, or what? You need to know this in order to configure that service to allow Mac Mail to download your email from that service to your computer. In addition, that service should have some support page that gives you instructions on how to configure Mac Mail. If you are using Yahoo mail, you have to purchase the annual upgrade in order to be able to download email to your computer.
        "What is the advantage of using Mac Mail over accessing your email directly online? For one, any images that come as attachments in email are instantly viewable in Mac Mail. Same with most other small documents. With Mac Mail, you can get a preview of any size document without needing to save it to your computer first. There are several other benefits, and you really need to see a demo of Mail in order to appreciate all that it can do."
       John concludes, "If there is anything else that you need to know, click here to send an email with your question to and someone will try to assist you."