Where great old Macs live again!

  • Male
  • Duluth, GA
  • United States
Share on Facebook Share

VannBaker's Friends

  • James

VannBaker's Groups

VannBaker's Discussions

iBook Hard Drive Wanted
2 Replies

Started this discussion. Last reply by VannBaker Dec 31, 2008.


VannBaker's Page

Gifts Received


VannBaker has not received any gifts yet

Give VannBaker a Gift

Profile Information

When did you get your first Mac?
How many Macs do you own?
9 . . . at the moment. I've had some others come and go in my business.
What is your website?
What's your favorite Mac of all time?
Duluth, GA
How did you hear about RetroMacCast?
Google Search

Macs I have and Macs I have Owned

Macintosh SE with/internal drive - first Mac - graphic design and BBSing - 1987
Screen died and I passed this Mac on to a friend about 10 years ago.

Macintosh SE with internal Drive, purchased second-hand from Goodwill in 2002,
I missed my old Mac SE and wanted to have this one.

Macintosh Classic - purchased second-hand from a Goodwill Store in 2002, a fun
Mac I fire up once in a while.

Macintosh IIcx - Used for graphic design for about 5 years - 1988

Macintosh IIci - given to me by a friend, which I used as a backup computer in the late
1990s, now donated to Goodwill.

Macintosh X - purchased second-hand and used as FirstClass BBS server from 1992-1995, donated to Goodwill a few years ago.

Quadra 650 - used for graphic design work - 1994, still works, but with no internal CD rom, and non G3 CPU, it's serving as a paperweight, even though I did in fact replace the mother board some ten+ years ago so it's technically a G3 box.

Macintosh G3 Minitower - used for graphic design work for about 5 years - purchased new in1998. I recently installed OS9.2 and used this computer to transfer some files from some Jaz drives over to an archive drive. May do the same with some old Syquest and Zip disks.

iMac (Bondi) 1998 - used for misc work by my wife, given to a friend about 5 years ago.

PowerBook 180 - used for writing mainly, purchased used in 1999, I use this now to call up BBSs.

iBook (G3) - purchased in 2002 - used for work, presentations. I use this Mac around the house as it has a good batter life (due to the small screen) and it has an Airport card and Panther. Great for surfing the web.

G5 - used for graphic design work. purchased in 2004, used as a backup computer. While this Mac is technically "retired" I do use it as backup computer and I may use it as file server.

G4 17 inch PowerBook - presentations, travel computer, purchased in 2005. I'm running Leopard on this Mac and I recently upgraded the RAM. I use this Mac when travelling and doing client presentations.

MacPro - my first Intel Mac, with dual 2.66 GHz CPUs - current graphic workhorse, 2008. I am running Tiger on this Mac and I have 5 GB ram and I've filled the drive bays with three 1-TB drives. I like this Mac more than the G5—it's cooler and easier to swap out drives.

How I got Started Using Macintoshess
In the 1970s I got my start as a graphic artist working for a print shop in Columbus, Georgia. In those days, everything was analog . . . photographic based, but in the late 70's I got to use some early photo typesetters, and while primitive by today's standards, it was a big leap over IBM's strike on-type (IBM Composer).

While computers started to find their way into the small business and consumer market by 1979 and 1980, most had to be programed and I remember telling my friend who had a ViC Commodore, as he wrote line after line of code to make role-playing game come to life, that I probably wouldn't own a computer until I could buy one that came with programs already written for it. Which turned out to be so true.

I worked part-time and put myself through college, so it took me a while to get my BFA degree. In 1984 I graduated from Auburn University, and I, like many others, were quite excited about the Macintosh and where graphic arts was headed.

In 1987 I started my own design studio in Atlanta, and bought my first Mac, an SE. I started out with Quark XPress (or Quirk XPress, as it was buggy at first), and soon thereafter I had a large book project and I was determined to produce it using the Mac.

One of the printing companies I was using at the time for printing design projects for me had a couple of Mac x's, and were also using Quark XPress for page layout and typesetting, who let me send them files via floppy disk and by modem for outputting to photo paper.

I added a video card to my Mac SE so I could use a 19 inch black/white monitor, which was badly needed as the SE's screen was really only good for basic text work. I also added a Daynafile box to the Mac, which allowed me to read and import 5.25 inch PC disks, also very handy since it would be few years before the PC world embraced 3.5 inch floppy disks. I also became a big fan of DataViz, which let me translate MultiMate, WordPerfect and other PC word processing files into Word or other formats which I could use in the Mac.

While we didn't have scanners yet, and there were few film output devices available,I was able to produce all my book pages with virtually no "paste up" by outputting using an Itec photo printer, through my printing company's typesetting department.

We still had to output the pages to photo paper, and the printer had to shoot negatives and traditional half-tone negatives of the photographs in the book and "strip" the elements together, but it was great to be able to create entire pages and move elements around the page easily. This project led to a wide range of other projects and I never had to send out for typesetting again.

I moved on to a Mac IIcx as my next main desktop computer about a year later which served me well for the next few years, and I kept the SE for a number of years until the screen died.

Luckily, I was able to find a SE at the local Goodwill store a few years ago, as well as a Mac Classic, which both work, to remind me of "the good old days"

As I look back, it is truly amazing how far graphic design has come in the space of two decades. Today projects go from files to imaging on printing plates, but requires even more work by the designer, but having total control over the project is great and I would never go back to the way things were done before.

Comment Wall (4 comments)

At 2:27pm on February 15, 2009, James said…
Perhaps you'd like to come on a future episode and talk about BBS? I don't have much experience with them. Let me know if you that sounds interesting.
At 9:50am on March 24, 2009, Eric said…
Vann, I was a contractor brat, later a contractor myself. I spent time in various places around Germany - Stuttgart, Wiesbaden, Mainz, Bonn and Grafenwoehr. It's still a wonderful country. The bread, the beer, the cobblestoned walking streets, the scenery, I could go on. I hope to make it back someday. Thanks for the comment.
At 7:19pm on May 16, 2009, Lars (WhyOSX) said…
I looked through James's photos tonight, here's what I found about:
'Using the rainbow logo as a tattoo':
- or write to Kathryn.
At 12:10pm on January 26, 2011, Classic Computing said…

Hey there, please consider joining the Atlanta based computer history group. We're trying to get a first meeting going. See -


Thanks, David

You need to be a member of RetroMacCast to add comments!

Join RetroMacCast




© 2021   Created by James.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service