Apple has had a hot and cold relationship with user groups over the past twenty years. The company was founded, literally, because of user groups: Steve Wozniak's Apple I and II designs were instant hits when he showed them to his user group buddies, which convinced The Other Steve that the designs had commercial potential. But at various times in the company's history, user groups have been treated more as annoying distractions rather than organized consumer groups, and relations between the company and user groups have often been strained.
Recently, Brighid Brady-de Lambert took over as Apple User Group Program Manager, complete with a corporate E-mail address (email@example.com) and Web page (http://www.apple.com/usergroups/). Brighid organized the 1998 User Group Tour, and flew cross-country to see that it got off to a good start. She seemed pleased with the massive turnout at Washington Apple Pi; in turn, Washington Apple Pi was pleased to see that a live, breathing human being was working at Apple, devoted to user group interests.
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Brighid Brady-de Lambert, Apple User Group Program
Manager, has revitalized Apple's user group program, and was
the driving force behind Apple's 1998 summer User Group
Tour. Here she chats with Don Essick, Washington Apple Pi's
vice president for Macintosh programs.