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Mar 16
Meeting Date Request

Meeting Date Request

Hi All,

I’m about a week early asking for details of your _MAY_ meetings but personal commitments, including prep for the Thirty Apple Years presentation I’m giving on April 1st, that is happening in the last week of March (when I would normally be preparing the Australian Macworld MUG Events Calendar) means I’m going to need it a little earlier, but at least I’m giving you over a week’s notice (unlike a few months ago, when I only gave an overnight reminder)

Anyway, what I need from you all, by 5pm EST Sunday, April 26th (just over a week from now) is the following info for your MAY meetings;

The Date (including DAY of week)
Your Group Name
Title of your Presentation/Event (if you know what is)
The URL promoting your meeting/event
Entry Cost (if any)

BTW: It is great to get the additional feedback and comments many of you include when you send your details. It’s nice to hear back from you all on a more “personal” basis. It’s also nice to know that some of you have also expressed thanks for the “extra commentary” I often include, so at this stage, I’ll try and continue to include a little comment, tip or suggestion each month.

One group asked me if it was OK to send these messages on to others within their groups – The answer is Yes.

Currently I post it to the official club address (normally the president or secretary) that was supplied when I first contacted MUGs a while back. Others have asked if I could add additional people within their group so they “automatically” get them as well and I’ve done so – In one group ELEVEN people now get these messages straight from me. And, I know at least one group forwards these messages on to their group’s mailing list as so many members are involved in meeting prep (don’t we wish our groups had this level of enthusiasm ๐Ÿ˜‰ and a couple share them with their Committee for consideration.

If you’d like me to include other members on these mail outs, drop me a line at usergroups-at-nicholaspyers-dot-com

A common query I’ve had over the last few months is where can MUGs get ideas for presentation topics. Many groups in the past never really worried about what they going to present until a few days before their meetings, but now that they are starting to think “a few months in advance” they are looking for topic ideas.

First point of call I would suggest is the Macworld MUG Event Calendars ๐Ÿ˜‰

Seriously, there is a nice consolidated list of what other MUGs have done recently.

Second point of call is your fellow MUGs websites to get greater detail on what they have done and lined up.

Many MUGs already have a great line up of presentation topics and once you get idea, you can come up with your material ๐Ÿ˜‰

You can also check out my own presentations site;

presentations ยป

There are a vast number of topics covered there and many include a PDF of the slides used and links to sites discussed.

[If you are interested in using my material, contact me and we’ll what we can arrange about getting the original Keynote files to you, and/or having me visit in person ;)]

Before you ask why some of my presentations don’t include the slides, I’ll answer that by pointing you to another resource I use extensively – The Apple Sales Web Site (ASW). Each MUG is able to appoint an Apple Ambassador who can then gain access to the ASW. The ASW includes some great resources for MUGs including a review copy of Life ’06, iWork ’06 and Mac OS X 10.4 “Tiger” for only US$5.00 each, plus shipping and handling. But importantly for this discussion they include a wide number of pre-prepared Apple-standard quality presentations, in Keynote format, ready to download (or included in the Quarterly Apple Mailbox packs or “Sales Readiness” discs that can be purchased for under US$10). Some of the presentations I’ve given on iLife, QuickTime, .Mac, Tiger and iWork have been based on these presentations from ASW (hence the reason I can’t publish the slides on my site – your Ambassador agrees not to redistrubute this material)

To appoint an Apple Ambassador (or to find out who yours is), have your President (or other authorized person) contact Graeme Moffat, the Apple Regional Liaison for Oceania (which includes AU and NZ) and he’ll assist you getting the ball rolling. His email address is gmoffatt-at-paradise-dot-net-dot-nz.

Also, check out the MUG Center. Chuck Joiner has provided a great list of possible topics for you to choose from.

mug center ยป

Another great resource are the Take Control Books, published by TidBITs founders, Adam and Tonya Engst.

take control ยป

They have some great titles including TC of Podcasting; TC of Apple Mail; TC of Mac OS X, TC of buying a Digital Camera; TC of Microsoft Word; and tons more and all of these could provide the basis of ideas for presentations.

Take Control also provide MUGs with a free copy of each book right when they publish and they encourage you to raffle it a meeting and also review it for your newsletter, plus they provide a 10% discount code for your members to save (But at US$5.00-US$10.00 a book, they aren’t expensive to start of with ๐Ÿ˜‰ In return for these generous offerings, all they ask is you announce each new book at meeting and pointing to the Take Control Books website and that you put a note on your website or newsletter.

Also, one of the advantages of ebooks is that regular updates to the contents can occur relatively easily, so you can work from current material and your members can also easily purchase them straight from the TC website as “extremely detailed Meeting Notes” ;).

To find out how your group can take control of these great offers contact Adam at ace-at-tidbits-dot-com

Failing all of these, you could simply do the following;

Present ONE portion of the iLife Suite a meeting (if you include iTunes that gives you six meeting topics there – iMovie, iDVD, iPhoto, Garageband, iWeb and iTunes and many of these could be broken in to two sessions – Beginners and Advanced, so there is a years worth of presentations)

You could also cover iWork – Pages and Keynote are great topics and again they can easily be covered as “An Introduction to …” and “Getting More out of …” sessions.

There is also nothing wrong with just having a good old fashion Q&A session, but try to have some structure – perhaps have a focus on a particular topic – Like “This month we’ll have a Q&A session on Word Processing – bring all your questions about AppleWorks, Pages, or Microsoft Word and we’ll try to answer them then”

I hope you get some great ideas for your group to present from these resources and I look forward to a) getting your feedback on my “commentary” and b) getting your MAY meeting details BEFORE 5pm EST Sunday, April 26th!

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