As a Mac consultant and trainer I need to keep up to date with all kinds of Mac-related information. This can suck up as much time and money as is available, and a lot which isn’t available too.
Buying printed books or magazines is just crazy – by the time I manage to get around to reading them they’re out of date, and each book can easily cost an hour’s income. The resale value on computer books is nil, and I have to find shelf space to keep them. Then when I do want to refer to them I’m usually out visiting a client while the book sits at home.
Those are some of the reasons why I’ve found the Take Control PDF series invaluable. Each book costs only US$5 or $10 – somewhere between a quarter and a tenth of a similar printed volume. Nevertheless, each book I’ve read (or skimmed) has been well-written, packed with invaluable information, updated as required, and takes only a few hundred K of disc space. What’s more, if I need to refer to it while with a client, why, it’s right there at hand!
Tonight I bought three volumes and have spent the evening skimming them.
- Take Control of Spam with Apple Mail (Joe Kissell, 59 pages, US$5)
- Take Control of Email with Apple Mail (Joe Kissell, 89 pages, US$10)
- Take Control of Buying a Mac (Adam C. Engst, 72 pages, US$5)
As many people know I’m a fan of the Eudora email software. Some of my clients though are using Apple Mail, and I thought these two books would be a useful reference. After skim reading them I need to say that both books deserve a much wider audience than just users of Apple Mail. The book on spam has a heap of very useful and extensive information about spam and junk mail in general, including fraudulent “phishing” emails, as well as specific tips for users of Mail. Joe obviously has both breadth and depth of knowledge on his topic and I know you’ll benefit from this book whichever email software you use.
Since I don’t really use Mail very often I skimmed through Joe’s book on Apple Mail fairly quickly. This is definitely more of a reference for me for later use with clients having problems. It seems Mail has a number of quirks, but Joe has again been very thorough in his research. There are detailed explanations and fixes for all kinds of confusions, glitches and bugs.
Again, though, I feel that there are many people who use other email clients who would find his discussion of email protocols and mail rules (filters) particularly illuminating.
I’ve had virtually no experience of IMAP and found his comments on that method of handling email very interesting.
See the next post for my comments on Take Control of Buying a Mac.