Introduction - Macs All-in-One For Dummies, 4th Edition (2014)

Macs All-in-One For Dummies, 4th Edition (2014)


Whether you’re a beginner, an intermediate user, or a seasoned computer expert, you can find something in Macs All-in-One For Dummies, 4th Edition. This book is divided into five minibooks so you can focus on the topics that interest you and skip over the ones that don’t. We explored every menu and button of the Mac, its operating system, and Apple’s iLife and iWork applications and wrote about most of them, focusing on the functions and features we think you’ll use frequently or that will help you get the most out of your Mac and the applications.

About This Book

This book begins by focusing on the basics for all the aspects of using a Mac with the latest operating system, OS X 10.9 Mavericks. We start at the very beginning, from turning on your Mac, using the mouse and trackpad with multitouch gestures, and organizing your virtual desktop. We segue to creating your Apple ID and connecting your Mac to the Internet. In true For Dummies style, we show you step by step how to conduct all your online activities from setting up e-mail accounts to having video chats. We introduce you to more advanced but important tasks, such as protecting your Mac and your personal information; networking your Mac with other Macs, peripherals, and devices; and installing Windows on your Mac!

The fun begins when we explore Apple’s iLife apps to manage tasks, such as editing and organizing your digital photos and videos, adding music to your Mac, and even creating and recording your own sounds. Along the way, we tell you how to share your finds and creations with people you know.

This book also shows you how to use and take advantage of Apple’s iWork suite, which provides word processing, desktop publishing, a presentation app, and a spreadsheet app for calculating formulas and displaying your data as 3D charts. Whether you use a Mac for work, school, or just for fun, you’ll find that with the right software apps, your Mac can meet all your computing needs.

If you’re migrating to a Mac from a Windows desktop or notebook PC, this book can ease you into the Mac way of computing and show you how to install Windows on your Mac so you can still use your favorite Windows programs. By running Windows on a Mac, you can turn your Mac into two computers for the price of one.

If you’re new to the Mac, you’ll find that this book introduces you to all the main features of your Mac. If you’re already a Mac user, you’ll find information on topics you might not know much about. After reading this book, you’ll have the foundation and confidence to delve deeper into your Mac’s bundled apps as well as others you can find at the App Store.

To help you navigate this book efficiently, we use a few style conventions:

· Terms or words that we truly want to emphasize are italicized (and defined).

· Website addresses, or URLs, are shown in a special monofont typeface, like this. If you’re reading this book as an e-book, URLs are active hyperlinks like this:

· Numbered steps that you need to follow and characters you need to type are set in bold.

· Control-click means to hold the Control key and click the mouse. If you’re using a mouse that has a left and right button, you can right-click rather than Control-click. If you have one of Apple’s trackpads, tap with two fingers. You find complete explanations of the multitouch gestures in Book I, Chapter 2.

· When we refer to the Apple menu — the menu that appears when you click the Apple icon in the very upper-left corner of your Mac’s screen — we use this apple symbol: image. When we talk about menu commands, we use a command arrow, like this: Choose image⇒Recent Items⇒Calendar. That just means to click the Apple menu; then, when it appears, slide your pointer down to Recent Items and drag slightly to the right to open a submenu from which we want you to click Calendar.

· We place figures where we think they help to explain the task at hand; however, we encourage you to follow along with your Mac so you have a full-color, full-size image to refer to.

Foolish Assumptions

In writing this book, we made a few assumptions about you, dear reader. To make sure that we’re on the same page, we assume that

· You know something, but not necessarily a whole lot, about computers, and you want to find out the basics of using a Mac or doing more with your Mac than you are already.

· You have at least a general concept of this wild and crazy thing called the Internet — or more precisely, the phenomenon known as the web (or, more formally, the World Wide Web).

· You’ll turn to the introductory chapters if you find yourself scratching your head at such terms as double-click, drag and drop, scroll, and Control-click — or any other terms that sound like things we assume that you know but you don’t.

· You appreciate the speed at which technology-based products like the Mac (and the programs you can run on it) can change in as little as a few months, with newer, sleeker, faster models and app versions replacing previous versions.

· You can traverse the web to find updated information about the products described throughout this book.

· You know that keeping up with the topic of all things high-tech and Mac (even as a full-time job, as it is for us) still can’t make a guy or gal the be-all and end-all Mac Genius of the World. You will, therefore, alert us to cool stuff you discover in your Mac odyssey so that we can consider including it in the next edition of this book.

· You’re here to have fun, or at least try to have fun, as you dive into The Wonderful World of Mac.

Icons Used in This Book

To help emphasize certain information, this book displays different icons in the page margins.

image The Tip icon marks tips (duh!) and points out useful nuggets of information that can help you get things done more efficiently or direct you to something helpful that you might not know. Sometimes Tips give you a second, or even third, way of doing the task that was pointed out in the step.

image Remember icons mark the information that’s been mentioned previously but is useful for the task at hand. This icon often points out useful information that isn’t quite as important as a Tip but not as threatening as a Warning. If you ignore this information, you can’t hurt your files or your Mac, but it may make the task at hand easier.

image This icon highlights interesting information that isn’t necessary to know but can help explain why certain things work the way they do on a Mac. Feel free to skip this information if you’re in a hurry, but browse through this information when you have time. You might find out something interesting that can help you use your Mac.

image Watch out! This icon highlights something that can go terribly wrong if you’re not careful, such as wiping out your important files or messing up your Mac. Make sure that you read any Warning information before following any instructions.

Beyond the Book

Talk is cheap (so they say), but print is not, and we always have more information than we can squeeze into our page limits. The wonderful universe of the web comes to the rescue, so we put a bunch of cool stuff online to complement what you read here. Follow these links to find

· Cheat Sheet

Although the Mac uses menus for just about everything, the menu commands have key combination counterparts. We put together a table of the most common key commands that you can print and keep near your Mac. You also find a cheat sheet table that shows you how to type foreign letters and common symbols and one that summarizes the multitouch gestures. To help you stay up to date with the latest Mac news, we provide a list of Mac websites with hot links, which you can simply click to go to the site.

· online articles

We posted four bonus articles — one each for minibooks II–V — to reinforce what you read about in each minibook. You can read suggestions for enhancing your online communications, advanced tips for working with Mac utilities, and specific examples of using Apple productivity apps in your daily Mac routine.

· Updates

When we write these books, the content is current, but sometimes products change the day after the book goes to press. So, we post updates online for you. If changes are important but minimal, you find an article online; if substantial changes happen, we post updates to the Downloads tab.

Where to Go from Here

In general, For Dummies books aren’t meant to be read cover to cover. However, this book flows from task to task, chapter to chapter, in an order that would be logical if you’re learning the Mac for the first time. In that case, feel free to start at Book I, Chapter 1 and go through the Book Ichapters to familiarize yourself with how the Mac is organized and how you can make it do what you want it to do. Then mix it up, moving on to fun tasks, such as making FaceTime video calls (Book II, Chapter 3) or designing a flyer with Pages (Book V, Chapter 3), and then bounce back to a crucial task, such as backing up (Book III, Chapter 1).

If you’re computer intuitive, you could start with Book I, Chapter 3 to get your Apple ID and Internet connection set up, and then move in the direction you want, whether it’s learning about more advanced system functions in Book III or editing your digital home movies with iMovie.

If you’re familiar with the Mac but want to brush up on the latest OS X — Mavericks — read about the Notification Center in Book I, Chapter 6; Maps in Book II, Chapter 4; iBooks in Book IV, Chapter 6, and the completely updated iWork apps in Book V, Chapters 36.