Nana wants a computer...

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Cybix, Aug 7, 2006.

  1. Cybix macrumors 6502a

    Cybix

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2006
    Location:
    Western Australia
    #1
    my nan just rang me...

    she says she wants a computer.

    the last thing she typed on was a typewriter, god knows how many years ago.

    really no idea what so ever about computers, at all.

    She wants to get on the net, communicate with her kids/grandkids using maybe skype, email, etc. use the web, and print stuff off...

    cheapy spare Pentium III I have laying around with XP on it, or...
    Mac Mini ?

    hrmmmmmmmm

    I'm just wondering if dear old nana will break a windows XP box faster than she could break an OS X box? I'm thinking, most likely....

    thoughts welcome.
     
  2. deggs37 macrumors member

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  3. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

    Staff Member

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    #3
    While easing her into any sort of computer will be daunting, I think would be easier for her to learn. My mother just started using a computer about six years ago (had to teach her how to use a mouse), and she picked up the basics of my parents' Mac (OS 9) pretty quickly...I'm certain much faster than she could have picked up Windows.
     
  4. steamboat26 macrumors 65816

    steamboat26

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    #4
    For the functions she needs, you could probably get by with an imac G3, and you could get for much cheaper than a mini.
     
  5. Cybix thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Cybix

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    #5
    thanks for the feedback.

    I'm def thinking MAC something... a) easier for them, b) virus's pulled down through the internet, on a windows machine, will rub them out in no time... one wrong click, boom, wiped out.

    If I was to get them some internet with a static IP address, and could help them remotely... what would be the way/software? (I use a Macbook Pro)

    Thanks again,
     
  6. elfin buddy macrumors 6502a

    elfin buddy

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    #6
    If you're fine with waiting for Leopard, I think the new version of iChat has something called "screen share" so that she can see everything you do on her screen.
     
  7. gadgetgirl85 macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

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  8. MacRumoron macrumors 6502

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  9. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

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    #9
    I have no idea of her budget, but the iMac is an unbeatable all-in-one for her. Easy to use, runs software very well, not too $$$ if bought as a refurb. And vastly more attractive than other options.
     
  10. killuminati macrumors 68020

    killuminati

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    #10
    I would definately say a Mac if she has no computer experience. If she has to start from scratch, learning a mac will eliminate a bunch of things that she would need to be taught about like viruses and spyware and all that ****.

    I think the cheapest mac with OS X you can find should do the trick. Maybe a refurb mac mini?
     
  11. ricgnzlzcr macrumors 6502a

    ricgnzlzcr

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    #11
    I'd do a mac pro, but upgraded to 3.0!:D

    But really, if all the software she needs is available, I'd turn the old pentium computer into a linux box and that way she can be devoid of viruses at a much lower price. That or get the mini if the money isn't a big issue!
     
  12. Cybix thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Cybix

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    #12
    cheers. the best idea I've heard yet (not the mac pro bit haha)

    linux/kde would probably work a treat if I wanted to do it all for a coupla hundred bucks...

    I'll ask her what she wants to spend and go from there, but ultimately the mac mini would be ideal :) or as mentioned iMac (then she gets monitor, etc).. hrmm
     
  13. Rapmastac1 macrumors 65816

    Rapmastac1

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    #13
    Price wise, if your looking for a computer, then it is best to get a budget box pc for 250.00. But, all other things, get the Mac Mini.
     
  14. LBmacman macrumors member

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    #14
    For under $100, get a used G3 iMac off of eBay
     
  15. ravenvii macrumors 604

    ravenvii

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    #15
    Yep, if I want to keep a low budget, this is the route I'd go. Put Ubuntu on it, put huge icons for what she does regularly (email, internet, etc) on the desktop, and bam. Easy as 1-2-3 for her to use.

    When she tells you she wants to do more advanced things, then get her a Mac mini or something.
     
  16. ChrisBrightwell macrumors 68020

    ChrisBrightwell

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    #17
    The guys suggesting an iMac have the right idea, but I'd double-check on how well Skype runs on a G3. I'd go for a G4 iMac, at least. LCDs tend to be easier on aging eyes, as well.

    Making the computer an "all in one" minimizes cable clutter and, as a result, minimizes how intimidating a computer can me. The most common answer I hear when I setup an iMac for a first-time user is, "where's the computer?"

    When I explain to them that it's all there, they're shocked. "Well that's not as scary as I thought it would be," or, "Wow, no cables?" Apple nailed it with the iMac and most of us don't quite realize it.

    Skype recommends an 800MHz G4, so I'd get at least a 1GHz iMac G4. Add an iSight and she gets a better mic in addition to the ability to do video chats w/ friends and family.

    My local Apple reseller usually has used iMac G4s (various specs) for less than $1000.
     
  17. steamboat26 macrumors 65816

    steamboat26

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  18. d wade macrumors 65816

    d wade

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    #19
    as long as she has no previous windows experience... there should be no reason she couldnt pick up a mac very easily. keep searching ebay
     
  19. Makosuke macrumors 603

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    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    #20
    I would go with an older iMac (at least G4-era, though), and set it up with both VNC running and use the parental controls to turn on simple Finder set up with ONLY the apps she's going to use. That makes for a VERY easy to understand from a rank novice standpoint, and there's little if any risk of screwing anything up. If tech support is needed and you're not nearby, VNC will get you there.

    I'd considered doing exactly this to get my in-laws (who are in their 70s) on an IP-based phone or videophone, so I worked out the easiest way to get it set up so nothing could go wrong for someone who honestly had zero idea what they were doing, and I could remotely troubleshoot from another continent if necessary (they're in Japan... and I'm not).
     
  20. SuperSnake2012 macrumors 6502a

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    #21
  21. Cybix thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Cybix

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    Western Australia
    #22
    Thanks for all your comments, it really is appreciated... It's an awkward situation for me, considering she's not used a computer, I realise a learning curve will be there, and I'll need to train her on the use of the machine.

    She also wants 'a printer'... so I'll need to suss something out there as well. but hey, a cheap inkjet would work fine, they dont cost much.

    Ultimately, if she's cashed up, a new iMac would rock.. easy on the eyes, all-in-one as suggested already, etc.

    I might run up some linux on a low end machine, and see how much I can customise it to be 'nana proof'... in the meantime.. But if she says she can spend some dollars on this, then the Mac route for sure.

    I'm guessing she wants to be able to type letters, and do some word processing. (hence requirement for printer) so it's gotta be Open Office on the linux machine, or.... I actually have a 'spare' office:mac licence she can have (i got it with my education pack).. so i guess that's another bonus of her going with Mac...

    I just cant get the picture in my head of her using a computer! haha it's going to be odd.

    I'll be posting what happens in any case! hehe
     
  22. extraextra macrumors 68000

    extraextra

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    California
    #23
    Apple has a $100 rebate for printers right now, so if you buy a Mac mini, and a printer for $99.95, it will be free.
     
  23. ITASOR macrumors 601

    ITASOR

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    #24
    I would never go Linux with her. You'll teach her how to use it, she'll get it down, then if you ever want to move onto a Mac with Leopard comes out with iChat screen sharing, or whatever else wants you to move to the Mac OS, you'll have a heck of a time trying to get her to unlearn linux.

    I say make a good choice and go OS X in the beginning and stick with it. Then if she needs to upgrade in the future, things will be easier on her.
     
  24. Rapmastac1 macrumors 65816

    Rapmastac1

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    In the Depths of the SLC!
    #25
    Yes, you can get a good condition iMac G4 for a little under 500 bucks, and they are soo cool, I want to get one just for the heck of it.

    But, I have an iMac just like that one in that pic, it's a very first generation, and is pretty fast, not capable of running OS/X but it can surf the net and play music and all dat, it's nice. If you want, I'll sell it to ya for 20 bucks, includes the keyboard (tho some cabling is ripped on the keyboard, it works, but there is white tape there, so maybe a new keyboard (USB) will be needed) And I don't have a USB mouse, I use my one that I use for my Macbook, and I have a USB thing that hooks up and gives the Mac two more USB ports and a TV out port. If ur interested, I'll post some pics, it's in great shape.
     

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