Winding Down AppleVan

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Rory Bowman

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Oct 7, 2011, 12:36:17 PM10/7/11
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Howdy, All.

As many old-timers know, AppleVan (originally the AppleVan Association of Vancouver) was founded in the late 1970's or early 1980's, well before the Macintosh. With dues and officers, it also included a large box of software which the librarian brought to each meeting, often "checking out" copies for folks to copy in days long before consumer Internet, when copyright was a vaguer, less understood thing. It met for a dozen or more years at Hazel Dell Elementary, until 1997 or 1998 as I recall.

As the iMac and OS 9 and the Internet emerged, folks moved on and the meetings also changed. The old dues-paying structure was changed to a more voluntary one and monthly meetings featured the usual Q&A along with "feature presentations" by members on their favorite techniques or programs. This is what I personally see as AppleVan's "golden age," under the capable leadership of Kelli Pio.

For the past few years things have changed quite a bit, with search engines and high-speed Internet making information on all things easier to find and the quality of hardware and software improving. Folks seem to feel less of a need for face-time sharing and so meetings have gotten smaller and more sparsely attended.

AppleVan has long skipped its monthly meetings during November and December, which would make the October 26 meeting the last of 2011. At the September meeting I floated an idea that I think Steve Jobs death this week makes even more fitting and worthy of consideration.

I would like to propose that AppleVan discontinue its regular monthly meeting and move toward an online-only format. I will continue to offer monthly "free clinics" at Empower Up on the third Wednesday of each month as long as that facility is available, but I'm not certain that the fourth Wednesday meeting is worth continuing.

What do folks think of this idea? Does anyone have a desire to take leadership and ownership of a monthly meeting? It seems to me that our hobby has been replaced by commerce, and I personally have little interest in running a fan club for the largest tech company in the world.

With Steve Jobs' death this week I am thinking that perhaps now is a good time to close the book on the special and beautiful thing that is AppleVan,

with dignity and love.

- Rory

GATES JOANN

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Oct 7, 2011, 1:33:20 PM10/7/11
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I believe an online format would be fine; hopefully we can ask questions pertinent to our use. Maybe a blog, or a forum?

Steven W Riggins

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Oct 7, 2011, 1:35:35 PM10/7/11
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While I only attended AppleVan a couple of times (sadly I always had conflicts) , I greatly appreciate what AppleVan did for the Apple community.

Thank you to all of the volunteers and members for having provided such a great resource for so long.

Steve

tda...@gmail.com

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Oct 7, 2011, 2:49:45 PM10/7/11
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Thanks a bunch Rory: As someone who is relatively new to Macs, I have benefited greatly from the monthly meeting. From my prospective there is a real value in the "hands-on" learning that goes on at the meetings. I have appreciated the talent and efforts that you and others have brought to the meetings, and I would miss that, but I realize the burden that that requires for those with the knowledge. I also value the email banter that has been available and would like to see at least that continue. Continuing the workshops on a periodic basis would be a plus too. Continuing some form of dialog would be very helpful. And thanks again to all that have provided support. tom d.

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Lgentry804

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Oct 7, 2011, 5:54:02 PM10/7/11
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Rory,
The on-line approach will actually work better for me, since I am always tied up on Wednesday evenings.  It is sad to see an old historic artifact like Applevan bite the dust but probably for the best.

Larry Gentry

Howdy, All.

As many old-timers know, AppleVan (originally the AppleVan Association of 
Vancouver) was founded in the late 1970's or early 1980's, well before the 
Macintosh. With dues and officers, it also included a large box of software 
which the librarian brought to each meeting, often "checking out" copies for 
folks to copy in days long before consumer Internet, when copyright was a 
vaguer, less understood thing. It met for a dozen or more years at Hazel Dell 
Elementary, until 1997 or 1998 as I recall.

As the iMac and OS 9 and the Internet emerged, folks moved on and the meetings 
also changed. The old dues-paying structure was changed to a more voluntary one 
and monthly meetings featured the usual Q&A along with "feature presentations" 
by members on their favorite techniques or programs. This is what I personally 
see as AppleVan's "golden age," under the capable leadership of Kelli Pio.

For the past few years things have changed quite a bit, with search engines and 
high-speed Internet making information on all things easier to find and the 
quality of hardware and software improving. Folks seem to feel less of a need 
for face-time sharing and so meetings have gotten smaller and more sparsely 
attended.

AppleVan has long skipped its monthly meetings during November and December, 
which would make the October 26 meeting the last of 2011. At the September 
meeting I floated an idea that I think Steve Jobs death this week makes even 
more fitting and worthy of consideration.

I would like to propose that AppleVan discontinue its regular monthly meeting 
and move toward an online-only format. I will continue to offer monthly "free 
clinics" at Empower Up on the third Wednesday of each month as long as that 
facility is available, but I'm not certain that the fourth Wednesday meeting is 
worth continuing.

What do folks think of this idea? Does anyone have a desire to take leadership 
and ownership of a monthly meeting? It seems to me that our hobby has been 
replaced by commerce, and I personally have little interest in running a fan 
club for the largest tech company in the world.

With Steve Jobs' death this week I am thinking that perhaps now is a good time 
to close the book on the special and beautiful thing that is AppleVan,

with dignity and love.

 - Rory

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LeGrandCo...@me.com

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Oct 9, 2011, 4:00:49 PM10/9/11
to AppleVan
As a group leader in Meetup and other orgs, I know the challenges of
leading a such a group. I'm grateful to Rory, Glenna and
predecessors! And I've seen/heard the difficulties of those who have
tried to continue with even a bit different format to keep things
going. It's certainly not easy and I'm appreciative even tho' I
haven't been able to attend as much as I've wanted.

Problem is that there is NO substitute for hands-on learning and
sharing. Online is always good, but just reading text -- what with
all the different writing styles -- often does not give me the clarity
I need. Even being in a live situation with an expert sitting and
telling me what to do is not so easy. I'm a very visual person, and I
think many Mac-users are, too. I learn much better when things are
pointed out, shown and time is left for note-taking for the future.

I know there is a way to continue -- even if it's only a Mac Clinic
monthly at EmpowerUp or another location -- but do we have the energy
and dedication to do it? Frankly, we do need more members and age-
range. I heard about times when members stepped up to lead a meeting
as just a discussion, but some of the "old dogs" were so critical that
it didn't go well. Too bad. There is nothing wrong with members
stepping up to lead a meeting so a sharing discussion can be
facilitated, even if they are not at the level of Rory, etc. Trouble
is ... will people do enough prep work to make it fun and informative
rather than tedious and not worth attendance? I've been to many
groups up here where presenters either give you the sales pitch or a
sloppy presentation that's all over the place and not content-worthy.
It's no wonder that these groups have less and less members. (no
reference intended to anyone @ AppleVan :-)

Since this is the oldest Apple group in the country, I think the
opposite. I think Steve would say carry on the torch -- I'm dead but
you're not and neither is Apple and it's innovative spirit.

I do have a clubhouse available for monthly meetings. I think we
could use it for a while -- not sure if they would allow indefinite
set monthly meetings, but I'm happy to check. It's up right off 134th/
I-5 & 205, and easy to find. While there is no WiFi, I have an Epson
projector and free-standing screen I'd be happy to load to the
effort. We have a full kitchen, bathroom and electricity at our
disposal and all I'd need is people to step up and help setup/take-
down tables & chairs and make sure we leave the place as clean as we
find it. (All hard floors ... easy-peasy.)

I'm also out scouting locations for my Meetup groups & my ArtAffaire,
and I'd be happy to include AppleVan in my thinking as I search. Has
anyone considered a small fee for meetings to cover the cost of
location/electricity for any small business who might be willing to
let us use their space? And if it's a small cafe, having members
agree to purchase a coffee, sandwich or at least some small food to
help support the biz in staying open for us/letting us use the space?
I know I have contacts that might work in that situation.

OK, there's my 2¢ worth. Anybody have thought ???
;-) Sunny
360-635-0306

Sharri LaPierre

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Oct 9, 2011, 4:10:22 PM10/9/11
to appl...@googlegroups.com
Sunny, what is your ArtAffaire? I might be able to help with that.
As for the AppleVan meetings, if we are to continue, I can offer my
studio for a very reasonable fee: free. I am not centrally located,
however. There is also the possibility that we could meet at North
Bank Gallery which is on Main St., downtown Vancouver.

Sharri
360 574-3730

--

Mark Miranda

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Oct 9, 2011, 4:33:41 PM10/9/11
to AppleVan
Recruiting new blood requires change. Elders don't even know what the
younger generation thinks or feels because they either choose to not
listen, choose to not change, or can't be bothered in trying. Here...
the end is inevitable. I'm sure Rory was a young member once, as were
all of you folks with history. Look in the mirror and spark in the
youngsters the same thing that brought you here. They are the future
whether we like it or not, trust them or not. K, enough of the heavy
stuff...moving on.

Of course there is no replacement for hands-on. That will never
change. However, when it's one on one it's not a group meeting, it's a
coaching session or a school. It requires travel and an allotted time
to do it. People just don't have the time they once had. The younger
generation has been so desensitized that they can find camaraderie in
online meetings, chats, collaborations. It's weird. Times have
changed. I'm a young 40 in a few weeks and still, some new generation
social things are completely foreign to me. Forums could be AppleVan's
life support for future planning, recruiting, sparking interest, and
newsletters until the rest of the organization finds its legs.

My .02 cents. Let me know if I can be useful in any way.

Mark Miranda
ma...@olypen.com
360-859-3075



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