SMUG: Savannah Macintosh Users Group - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

08/26/04

SMUG: Savannah Macintosh Users Group

In home and business computing, it's a Windows world. Or seems that way, with Microsoft's dominant Windows operating system running the majority of computers worldwide. But there are options, and we found one local group of computer users who say the Macintosh is their preferred computer.

They're SMUG. That's what members of the Savannah Macintosh Users Group call themselves.

"The purpose in life of SMUG is to have a gathering for Macintosh enthusiasts. We're a community that helps one another," said the group's president, Krishna Sadasivam. "Just a bunch of Mac users that like to get together and share technology and the love of the machine."

That love of the machine is a hard-to-pin-down quality. SCAD student and video producer Casey Heyward put it this way: "I think of myself as a creative person, and to be able to work on a machine that a creative person has clearly put a lot of thought into and a lot of care in both the physical nature of the machine but also the operating system, how it looks and how it feels, it's important."

Heyward shared the feeling with other Mac enthusiasts at a recent SMUG meeting by showing off his video work and offering tips.

Sharing among users has been a big part of the group for years. "I've been a member for 17 years," said attendee Marc Gregory. "I joined basically for technical assistance. I've gotten a lot of good help from the user group."

People come to the monthly meetings at Savannah Tech for presentations and also, the latest hardware, like the Macintosh G5 machine Heyward used to produce his video.

But there's another reason Mac users will tell you their computing experience is better. "The last big virus anyone remembers is about five years ago on the Macintosh," said SMUG vice president Phil Campbell. "I think Windows honestly is just an easier target and a bigger target."

Heyward has had experience with viruses in the Windows world: "Definitely working on a networks with a lot of computers  I've problems with viruses, software crashing cause it gets infected with something. I haven't noticed that at all on a Mac."

The group also serves as a networking/social opportunity for adherents to the minority platform. "I've met people within this group that I never would have had a chance to meet--everyone comes from a very diverse background," said Sadasivam. "You'd be surprised, there's teachers, there's engineers, there's cartoonists, there's photographers, the whole gamut of people that you meet, so it's kind of surprising. Everyone's got an interesting story to tell within the group."

You could say they're in a niche, but they'll tell you they're happy there.

If you're interested in attending a SMUG meeting, you can contact Sadasivam via email.

Reported by: Charles Gray, cgray@wtoc.com

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