Simple Manual for Mom

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Le Big Mac, Mar 13, 2006.

  1. Le Big Mac macrumors 68020

    Le Big Mac

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #1
    So my mom is getting an iMac for her birthday. She's generally helpless with computers, although she's been using a Mac with moderate success for a while now.

    It would probably help her to have a quick reference guide or something. Anyone have one to recommend? There's no point in something long and comprehensive like the Missing Manual. Something relatively short that will help her with the key features of Tiger and the various iApps.
     
  2. TLRedhawke macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2004
    #2
    I gave my mother an iMac a year and a half ago, and I found that just putting everything in the dock for her, and setting things like Software Update to work automatically at monthly intervals was more than sufficient. Because of the drag and drop nature of the OS, that's usually quite sufficient. I also set Safari to save everything to the desktop, for easy reference. Then I just told her to just drag things where she wanted them.

    Admittedly, my mother pretty much just checks her email with that machine, but installing iWork also got her to use it for writing resumes, and such, which she would never have done previously.

    I find that the best way to learn is to just be let loose with the OS, and soon enough you'll discover all the neat shortcuts to make life easier. If you know enough to do what you need to do, you'll eventually learn enough on your own to do it more efficiently.
     
  3. Applespider macrumors G4

    Applespider

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2004
    Location:
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    #3
    If she's anything like my mother, she won't read a manual and even if you show her, she probably won't remember 3 months later what all the steps were.

    I eventually put a link to Apple's Mac 101 pages in Safari's menu bar with the words 'Get Help Here!' which seems to have done the trick for some stuff.
    She still tends to just call me though.
     
  4. 840quadra Moderator

    840quadra

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Location:
    Twin Cities Minnesota
    #4
    The guides on this site are quite helpful ( http://guides.macrumors.com/ ), and in most cases, a simple search on Apples website is good for finding good information on many types of beginner questions.
     
  5. Le Big Mac thread starter macrumors 68020

    Le Big Mac

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #5

    Good link. Thanks. You're probably right. I've tried for 10 years the "just play with it" approach, and she can't seem to do it.

    I'm also going to set up VNC access so I can take over from my computer and show her.
     
  6. LastLine macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2005
    #6
    The Missing Manual - Mac OSX Tiger Edition by David Pogue was my bible when switching. Highly recommended.
     
  7. Le Big Mac thread starter macrumors 68020

    Le Big Mac

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #8
  8. rdowns Suspended

    rdowns

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    #9
    Get her a .Mac trial. Have her watch the videos- they are quite good. Worked for my step-father.

    He actually called me last Sunday and told me he bought a new HP printer. I rolled my eyes and was ready for an hour long tech call. Told me he hooked it up and has it working.
     
  9. adk macrumors 68000

    adk

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2005
    Location:
    Stuck in the middle with you
    #10
    What if you were to get her a subscription to that new procare thing? She could get up to an hour a week of lessons from a genius.
     
  10. Le Big Mac thread starter macrumors 68020

    Le Big Mac

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #11
    Hmm. That's a thought, although I suspect she wouldn't take advantage of it. I may tell her to go into a local apple store for some extra lessons though.
     

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