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MacMania 11 Seminars

Patagonia (South America) • February 4–16, 2011





And MacMania alumni:

The conference fee is $1,095 and includes all MacMania 11 courses below, three parties, and the MacMania Ingenious Bar.

• • • LEO LAPORTE • • •

60 iPhone Apps in 60 Minutes

With over 10,000 applications in the iTunes App Store it might be hard to find the best of the best. Leo’s picked 60 fun, useful, and sometimes mind-boggling applications, many of which are not well known. Fasten your seatbelt for a fast-paced ride through the wonderful world of iPhone applications.

Here are the slides (167mb file).

MacGems — the 60 Best Freeware Programs in 60 Minutes

One of the things that makes a Mac extra special is the excellent variety of useful free programs available for OS X. You won’t be bored with this whirlwind tour through 60 useful, entertaining, and unexpected freeware programs. You’ll get a DVD with all the programs so you can try them right away.

Here are the slides (1mb file).
Here is the video of this talk.

The New World of Social Media: Using Facebook, Twitter, Friendfeed, and Other Sites to Learn, Socialize, Market, or Build an Audience (90 minutes)

With 130,000 followers on Twitter, 30,000 on FriendFeed, and the maximum 5,000 friends on Facebook, Leo knows social networks. But what good are they? And how can you use them to keep up with friends, build new networks, promote yourself, and your business. Leo will introduce you to social networks like Twitter, Friendfeed, Facebook, My Space, Linkedin, explain why they’re all the rage, and how you can get the most out of them.

Turning Your Mac Mini Into a Media (90 minutes)

Leo takes you beyond the AppleTV by showing how you can use a full-blown Macintosh to create the ultimate home entertainment center. Topics will include software solutions like Front Row, Boxee, XBMC, Plex, and EyeTV plus hardware solutions from El Gato and Pinnacle, and useful accessories like remote controls, cable box interfaces, and wired and wireless video distribution systems. You’ll leave this hour ready to create your own system perfect to fit your needs.

• • • DON McALLISTER • • •

Become a Backup Ninja (90 minutes)

OK, so you have Time Machine. So you’re fully backed up, right? Wrong! Time machine is just part of the story. This session takes you through creating an effective, bullet proof backup strategy to protect your precious data. We’ll take a look at local storage, Network Attached storage (NAS) along with specialised backup devices. The session will also cover backup best practice incorporating local backups as well as cloud based and off-site backups.

Here are the slides (37mb file).

Forget the Mouse (90 minutes)

With the march towards touch computing, first with the iPhone and then with the iPad, is it time to reconsider using a mouse at all with your desktop machine? With the introduction of inexpensive, pen based input devices for your desktop or laptop, pen tablets are no longer the sole domain of graphic designers or artists. They’re just as effective as a mouse for day to day operations on your computer. Some desktop tablets even have touch control too! In this session we look at a range of pen and touch devices to see just what benefits they bring, and let you decide if it’s time to retire the mouse!

Here are the slides (35mb file).
Here is the video of this talk.

Go Paperless (90 minutes)

The holy grail of the digital age! Will we ever reach the point of a completely “paperless” office? Probably not! But you may be surprised to see just how far you can go in achieving digital nirvana. This session looks at the technologies and tools behind digitising documentation and includes guidance on best practice for easy storage, effective organization, and rapid retrieval of all your digital assets.

Here are the slides (17mb file).
Here is the video of this talk.

Master the Finder (or use an alternative!) (90 minutes)

The Finder is at the heart of your Mac experience. But do you use it effectively? Do you know all the tips and tricks to supercharge your Finder experience? This session shows you the shortcuts to making the Finder fly and help you navigate around your Mac. If you want to take your File System navigation to the next level, we also take a look at some of the best third party addons and Finder replacements available.

Here are the slides (9mb file).

LaunchBar MasterClass (90 minutes)

At it’s core, LaunchBar is an application launcher but to call it just an application launcher does it a disservice. The developers of LaunchBar have been increasing the functionality with each release, adding not just cool but stunningly useful features. LaunchBar 5 creates an index of all the "stuff" on your Mac — Applications, files, folders, documents, preference panes, web bookmarks, Web history, your iTunes library, your address book, your iPhoto library, and much more. Then it allows you to create and access keyboard abbreviations to search and access all aspects of your Mac without moving your hands from the keyboard, Add in some extra features such as the built-in actions and extremely powerful integration with web services and web search templates, you’ll wonder how you ever did without it.

Here are the slides (12mb file).

Managing Multiple Macs (90 minutes)

The likelihood is you have multiple Macs! Perhaps a desktop or two at home, possibly a desktop at the office, his and her laptops? Not to mention the iPods, iPhones, and iPads dotted liberally amongst the family. How to manage all these devices and the multiple synchronization tasks required? This session takes you through the various options for data sharing and synchronization both built into OSX and Mobile Me but also available through third-party applications via the cloud.

Here are the slides (94mb file).

First Things First (90 minutes)

So you’ve just got your new Mac, but what are the first applications and utilities you install? Follow along and see if you agree with the list of the most indispensable Mac applications and utilities you must install on any new Mac. If your favourite Mac utility isn’t included, let the class know!

Here are the slides (19mb file).

Global Digital Publishing (90 minutes)

Do you realize just how easy it is to become your own digital publisher, creating and distributing audio, video, or even documents to a global audience via iTunes and the Internet. With enormous potential for both pleasure and business as well as unlimited application in areas such as marketing, sales, advertising, training, branding, entertainment, and communications, digital publishing is at the forefront of New Media. By the end of this session, you will have glimpsed the potential of digital publishing and understand just how easy it is to adopt and appreciate the benefits that it can bring.

Here are the slides (27mb file).

• • • SAL SOGHOIAN • • •

Apple Apps from A to Z (full day)

This trio of classes covers the gamut of Apple applications, with an emphasis on a hands-on exploration of Apple’s popular programs.

The first class focuses on the practical, with an investigation of the essential Mac OS utilities: Mail, Address Book, iCal, TextEdit, and Preview, to learn how to make them work together, and discover their often overlooked abilities.

The second class is all about iLife, where you learn to explore the creative side of your computer self. With a focus on real-world examples, you’ll learn to combine elements from iPhoto, iMovie, and iWeb, to construct an onboard blog that will make your friends and family back home regret they didn’t come along. Next time maybe they’ll listen to you.

We finish the Apple apps overview with a look at iWork. Even though we are trying leave the stress of work behind us, you can still take advantage of this down-time to become a little more competent with these productivity tools. Never hurts to upgrade your resume. Extra points for those who bring an iPad to discover how to use iWork on it too.

Fun with Services (90 minutes)

Don’t miss this class. Services in Mac OS X is like a big Lego set where you join pieces and blocks of OS goodness together to create downright useful gadgets that show up when and where you need them. If you want to impress your friends with what you learned on the cruise, this is the class to take. Best of all, it’s easy and fun.

25 Things You Need to Know About Mac OS X (90 minutes)

Even seasoned Mac veterans don’t take the time to setup and streamline their computers to take advantage of the numerous features of Mac OS X. Get the most from your Mac and learn the shortcuts and custom settings used by the pros.

Master Your iPad (90 minutes)

The iPad is a game-changing device that can quickly become indispensable. Its easy interface combines simplicity with ability, enabling easy access to essential information. In this class, you’ll explore the iPad’s variety of uses: from browsing books, managing email, navigating maps, to building documents, presentations, and even mastering the art of finger-painting!

• • • BEBO WHITE • • •

Semantic Searching — Making Web Searches Smarter (90 minutes)

Has it ever annoyed you that search engines really do not appear to understand the queries you make, even if you use advanced search features? Why does the question “What is the capital of Chile?” (useful as you prepare for this cruise) yield thousands of responses when there is only just one answer (Santiago)? Is it because search engines are dumb (maybe) or because they don’t understand semantics and context (usually)? In this talk we’ll cover semantic searching and the search engines that appreciate it. We’ll also talk about how to make yourself “better defined semantically” on the Web so that search engines will truly realize your relevance (such as realizing that the speaker has nothing whatsoever to do with

Here are the slides (4mb file).

Replacing Your Laptop with Your iPad — You Can Really Use it for Work! (90 minutes)

Has Apple made a mistake by focusing on the iPad’s use as a media platform — reading books, Web browsing, looking at photos and videos, etc.? In fact, it (and the machines it inspires) have the potential to change the face of portable business computing. In this talk we’ll demonstrate how it can be used for word processing, presentations, remote system logins, file sharing/transfers, etc. all in ways that take advantage of its very “un-laptop like” interface. Attendees will hopefully be coming away wondering if they really need to take both their laptop and iPad on their next business trip. Non-iPad owners may contemplate their next laptop purchase.

Here are the slides (20mb file).


Creating Fabulous Videos (half day)

As camcorders become smaller and more powerful and desktop production tools offer more professional results, people are using their Macs to recapture their travels and adventures in an elegant way. But the challenge remains: how to organize the material into compelling shows to share with other people. Drawing from his long experience with photography and film, Wally covers how to plan, shoot, and shape video footage and stills into a memorable story. Participants will get tips to take into the field on shore excursions, share some of their best clips, and learn how to deliver a polished product.

Part 1: Planning a Video Shoot (90 minutes)

  • Choice of equipment (iPhone, various camcorders, tripod, monopod, Joby Gorillapod(s), case, remote, etc)
  • Storage media and backup
  • In the Field
  • What works — taking a range of shots (establishing, medium, close-up, cutaway, etc)
  • What doesn’t work — shots to avoid
  • "Trick shots" to try on shore excursions — adding extra polish to your final movie
  • Thinking ahead — recognizing a beginning and an ending, keeping continuity

Part 2: Editing and Production (90 minutes)

  • "Seeing" the story — what’s important and what’s not
  • Telling the story — shot selection, order, length, story pacing
  • Combining video and stills
  • Choice of music, cutting to the beat
  • Intro & conclusion — how to start, how to end, titles
  • Screening of participants’ clips from shore excursions
  • Choice of video production tools — iMovie, Final Cut Express/Pro and how they can work together
  • Review of other video tools and resources
  • Demonstration of FotoMagico (a premier tool for production of animated slide shows) — participants will contribute photos taken on a shore excursion to produce a MacMania show
  • Exporting and sharing shows in various formats — DropBox, MobileMe, iWeb
  • Links to learning resources, special deals

Here are the slides (36mb file).


A Survey of Mac and Mobile Writer’s Tools (90 minutes)

They say that the secret to writing well is to apply the seat of the pants to the seat of the chair. But today, it’s also a matter of keeping your pinkies firmly placed on the keyboard. From the moment an idea pops into your head till you put the finishing touches on your masterpiece, there’s a tool you can use to gather and store material, organize it, and generate drafts. Let professional writer Wendy Cherwinski lead you on a journey to explore Mac and iPad writer’s apps such as Scrivener, Evernote, Write Room, OmniOutliner, Circus Ponies Notebook, Shovebox, and TextExpander. After this session, you’ll be better equipped to tackle any writing project, whether your goal is to put together a newsletter or blog article, research and write a family history or biography, create a short story, or even pen a novel or screenplay.

Here are the slides (13mb file).

• • • THOMAS GROLLMAN, M.D. • • •

Photoshop Elements 9 (half day)

When you have Photoshop Elements 9 skills in your photo editing repetoire, nothing gets lost in translation from your mind’s eye to your images. Join Dr. Tom Grollman for two 90-minute sessions that will get you running in Photoshop Elements 9’s Guided and Quick Fix modes, and give you a solid foundation in Full Edit’s magic.

Bring a pen or pencil and paper to make notes. Dr. G. recommends that you download a free trial or buy Photoshop Elements 9 from Adobe before the class. Get a free 30-day download.

Part 1: The Basics (90 minutes)
You’ll enhance your photos, simply, with Guided Edit. Learn recomposing, correcting exposure, retouching blemishes and distortion. Find out how to remove people or objects from photos, make your group shots shine, and make nifty conversions from photos to line drawing, old-looking formats, and more. Amaze yourself with the ease of addressing red eye, whiter teeth, and bluer skies, among other issues, with Dr. Grollman’s tutoring in Quick Fix mode.

Part 2: Maximizing Photoshop Elements (90 minutes)
Now we’re deep in to it! Maximize enhancement of your photos in Photoshop Elements 8’s Full Edit mode. You’ll tune up your skills with Selections; delve into cropping and straightening, panoramas and collages; gain abilities in body sculpting, working with layers and masks; wielding Smart Brush; and even in turning gray skies to blue.

Here are the slides (1mb file).

• • • JAN JACKSON • • •

Getting the Most from Your Travel Photography (two hours)

Jan Jackson, a graphic artist, has spent the last 34 years taking professional photographs — from a chicken coup to a nuclear fuel assembly. In this class you’ll take your travel photography up a notch, or two, as you learn the tips and tricks from this seasoned professional.

In this class you’ll learn:

  • Exposing for South America and Antarctica: Antarctica will be very white, your camera will want to make everything 18% grey. Jan will show you how to properly expose your images.
  • Composition: Here we’ll cover the “rules of composition” sprinkled with a few suggestions on how to make your compositions more interesting. You will learn the rule of thirds, S-curves, repetition, diagonals, and many other fundamentals of good composition.
  • Making the most of the day: Some days are overcast, raining, snowing or worse. You will learn to photograph in inclement weather and make dazzling photographs rain or shine, just by capitalizing on contrast.
  • Creativity: There are a number of ways to become more creative — including altering your consciousness or simply looking at things from a different perspective. Here, you’ll learn about perspective.
  • Building contrast in Photoshop: Once you’ve exposed the image, your work has just begun. I’ll show you how to transform your images from dull to glorious with a few filters and tricks in Photoshop.

Here are the slides (71mb file).

• • • BILL LUNDELL • • •

Home Automation (90 minutes)

Ever wanted to remotely set back thermostats whenever you’ on vacation? Make your house seem occupied when you are at work or away. Have house lighting and lawn watering times change based on the season or the weather? Even be able to remotely monitor your house when you are on this cruise? If so, then this seminar is for you!

Home Automation has been around for decades, controlling lights and appliances since the mid 1970s. But until recently, almost all home automation systems only worked with Windows PCs. Now there are several systems compatible with Mac computers.

During this seminar, we’ll explore what is now available to Mac users — including home automation apps on the iPhone. We’ll look at: controlling lighting and appliances; heating and air conditioning; lawn and plant watering; security and cameras; and even door locks.

Here are the slides (6mb file).

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