Starting Line – My Mac Magazine #44, Dec. ’98

Today, I’m taking a little trip down memory lane…

I was speaking to a friend of mine, a very talented desktop publisher. I asked her what was the most difficult thing for her to learn on the Mac when she first started on the platform 10 years ago (I needed something to write about this month!). Her response was very interesting. Her problem area was strictly learning curve–even the Mac has one! And then, as now, PCs are predominantly used in the corporate world. Her difficulties arose in the almost impossibility of networking both Macs and PCs–remember, this was 10 years ago. Fortunately, things are easier now.

She fondly remembers receiving her first email from her boss’s house (Microsoft Mail, no less!). Such a big deal, his using a modem. Her original film recorder (a peripheral that images 35mm slides directly from the Mac to a roll of film) was interesting because she had to assign color or the slides would have been in black and white. Of course, it was all done on a Mac SE which had no color!

Her first scanner was black and white with 300 dpi (dots per inch). Trust me, back then 300 dpi was kicking. Now, a standard desktop scanner has at least 2400 dpi and that’s starting to be considered too low. But hey, she thought her first scanner was really cool–We all did!

Her first illustration software package was MacDraft. She moved up to MacDraw, then ClarisCad. When she finally discovered Freehand and Illustrator she was in HEAVEN!

It was so funny and nostalgic listening to her. As exciting as computing is today, sometimes it doesn’t compare to the beginnings. Just discovering what was possible, making it work, pulling of the job successfully and so much more easily! You really felt like you were on the cutting edge of design and technology.

Helpful Hints

ObjectSupportLib Extension–This arrived in my email as one of Z-D Journal’s The MacAuthority newsletter weekly tip. In a nutshell, if you are using any version of OS 8 and are continually crashing, look for this extension in your Extensions Folder. (The Extensions Folder is found in your System Folder by double-clicking on your hard drive.)

For some reason, this known conflict causer is still dropped into the Extensions Folder by many installer applications. What makes it interesting is the ObjectSupportLib function is now written into the System Software so the extension itself is obviously unnecessary. Click and drag this thing to your trashcan and get rid of it!

MS Word Tool Bars–Microsoft Word has several tool bars for your use. Unfortunately, there are so many that if you had all of them on, you probably couldn’t see your document! I tend to use the standard tool bar and nothing else. Since I use MS Word strictly for word processing, the standard control bar is perfect.


Starting Line PictureTo make it even more perfect, I’ve customized it. It’s very easy to do. While in MS Word, go to the Tools drop down menu. Select Customize. You get a very detailed dialog box that allows you to customize your tool bar. Simply click and drag! For instance, you want to remove an icon from the control bar, click and drag it off the bar. It’s gone! You want to add an icon, click on the one you want in the dialog box, and drag it to where you want it located in the tool bar. Voíla!

Barbara Bell

Leave a Reply