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December 12, 2003

"Mac OS X: The Missing Manual, Panther Edition": The Book Panther Users Won't Want to Miss

Sebastopol, CA--What's so ubiquitous in the Mac world that the term "missing" scarcely applies to it any more? You won't find it in the box with the computer or shrink-wrapped with the system CDs, but it's the one item that's least likely to be missing from any Mac user's desk. In fact, no new release of Mac OS X would be complete without it--the latest addition to the Missing Manual series. Panther users will be glad to know that David Pogue has come through once again with Mac OS X: The Missing Manual, Panther Edition (O'Reilly/Pogue Press, US $29.95).

The latest update of David Pogue's best-selling title offers a wealth of detail on all of the changes in Apple's Mac OS X 10.3, a.k.a. "Panther." Written with humor and technical insight characteristic of the series, the new edition covers everything from the all-new Finder to iChat AV--Apple's exciting tool for video conferencing. The book also deals with features under the hood, such as the Terminal and networking tools. Pogue, the renowned "New York Times" computer columnist, tackles his subject with scrupulous objectivity--revealing which new features work well and which do not.

Panther is loaded with 150 new features, many of them quite compelling, according to Pogue, but one of Panther's chief features is that it is the un-Windows. That is, it accentuates all the characteristics of the Mac that have been driving people crazy in Windows lately. For example, Pogue notes that Mac OS X is, and always has been, virus free. Furthermore, it never pops up with annoying nags to sign up for this or that database, never bugs you to clean up your desktop, or do anything else for that matter. "And particularly in Panther," says Pogue, "Mac OS X is a bastion of security, featuring government-level encryption for your account, a password-protected screen saver, an automatic logout timer, and other features that seem to say: 'You won't find this operating system company having to release a new security patch every two weeks!'"

As with the previous two editions, Mac OS X: The Missing Manual, Panther Edition is designed to help beginning to intermediate Mac fans--or Windows switchers--discover the joys of Mac OS X. New in this edition are mini-manuals on iMovie, iPhoto, iChat, iTunes, Safari, and other programs included with the system. Readers of previous editions will find changes on nearly every page reflecting the newer, more streamlined design of the System Preferences settings program; reassigned keystrokes for efficiency fans; the overhauled Preview program for reading PDF files, graphic files, and incoming faxes; the updated Mail program, and much more.

In the coming months, millions of Mac users will encounter Panther either pre-installed on their new Macs or by installing it themselves on their current ones. Mac OS X: The Missing Manual, Panther Edition will be their indispensable guide to what is new. As with its predecessors, this manual is certain to be found wherever Macs are.

Praise for the previous edition:

"The first item on the shopping list of any Mac user should be a copy of David Pogue's Mac OS X: The Missing Manual. The title sums this book up: it's the manual that Apple ought to ship in the box with the operating system."
--"Computer Shopper," July 2003

"I frequently get asked what is the best Mac OS X book. The easy answer is David Pogue's Mac OS X: The Missing Manual, currently in its second addition. It's hard to beat the combination of helpful information and entertaining prose."
--Charles W. Moore, Applelinks, March 2003

"Bless David Pogue. I don't know the guy personally, but after reading his book Mac OS X: The Missing Manual I consider him my personal angel...the book comes across as a treasure trove of hidden knowledge. Another subtitle on the book's cover is 'The book that should have been in the box,' and it's true...an invaluable resource for the new Mac OS X user. This book is almost worth its weight in gold."
--David Cooper, MacDirectory, Spring 2003

Additional reviews can be found at: http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/macosxmm2/reviews.html

Additional Resources:

Mac OS X: The Missing Manual, Panther Edition
David Pogue
ISBN 0-596-00615-2, 782 pages, $29.95 US, $43.95 CA
order@oreilly.com
1-800-998-9938; 1-707-827-7000

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