MacMania 8 Speakers

E. Mediterranean • November 5th – 15th, 2008


Dan Frakes is a respected book author, tech writer, and computer expert, as well as an authority on iPods and portable audio. Dan is a Senior Editor and the "Mac Gems" columnist at Macworld; the Senior Reviews Editor at Playlist; and a contributing editor and columnist (and former editor) for His books include two editions of the acclaimed Mac OS X Power Tools as well as Your iPod Life, an entire book — seriously — on iPod accessories. He is also the co-author of Ted Landau's Mac OS X Help Line, an editor/author of The Macintosh Bible, and an editor for TidBITS' Take Control series of ebooks. In a previous life, he wrote InformINIT, one of the first-ever ebooks.


Janet Hill has extensive experience in the educational technology field. Formerly a math and science teacher, Janet has a strong tie to education.

Janet received her education degree from Baker University in Baldwin, Kansas. She has Masters Degrees in Biology, Instructional Technology and Gifted Education. Janet is an avid ornithologist and enjoys yearly trips to South America to study birds and ecology.

Janet's interest in teaching people how to utilize technology stems from her experience in the classroom as well as growing up in a family of educators. Janet's goal is to help other people find ways to make technology an invisible tool with which to explore the world.


Lesa Snider King is on a mission to teach the world to create (and use!) beautiful images. An honors graduate of the Art Institute of Dallas, she's been speaking at conferences and writing easy to follow, step-by-step tutorials at since 2001. She is also a stock photographer and chief evangelist for and works with David Pogue on many projects. Lesa is the coauthor of Photoshop CS3: The Missing Manual (O'Reilly, 2007), and writes regularly for NAPP, Macworld Magazine, Elements Techniques, and Layers.

When she's not parked in front of her Mac, you'll find Lesa perched atop her motorcycles, exploring the countryside with husband Shawn King. They live in Westport, CT with two very spoiled cats.


Merlin Mann is the creator of and primary contributor for 43 Folders, a family of websites about personal productivity, "life hacks," and simple ways to make your life a little better.

Merlin was born in Cincinnati, Ohio and raised on Florida's humid Suncoast. In his senior year of high school, Merlin dropped his 1st period BASIC class so he could strum Major7 chords in the school's stage band. Somewhere in this is a story that should tell you much of what you need to know about him.

In 1990 — despite turning in a wildly mediocre thesis on the ideological hegemony of television — Merlin was kindly awarded a B.A. from the most excellent New College of Florida.

Past lives have found Merlin toiling as a web developer, project manager, hardware store remodeler, reluctant telemarketer, and enthusiastic but unprofitable indie rock musician.

More recently, Merlin's writing has been carried in fine periodicals like WIRED, Make, Popular Science, and MacWorld, while 43 Folders has been featured favorably in The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, Time, and The Wall Street Journal, to name a few. 43F is enjoyed by over 100,000 unique (and very good-looking) visitors each month and is read each day by over 50,000 people via its oddly popular RSS feed. There's just no accounting for taste, is there?

Aside from writing for 43 Folders, Merlin is also the creator of The Merlin Show, 5ives, and 30 Seconds with Phone Guy. And, in addition to doing an occasional podcast for 43 Folders, Merlin is a host on the popular MacBreak video podcast as well as appearing as a regular guest on the MacBreak Weekly and This Week in Tech audio roundtables (both on Leo Laporte's TWiT network). Additionally, Merlin's a sought-after speaker and presenter who's delivered productivity talks at Apple, Google, Yahoo!, Adobe, Xerox PARC, as well as many other cool companies and organizations.

Merlin does most of what he does in front of a Macintosh computer in the western third of San Francisco, California, where the climate is foggy, but the pork xiu mai is both plentiful and modestly-priced.


Complete Bio for David found here.


Randal L. Schwartz is a renowned expert on the Perl programming language (the lifeblood of the Internet), having contributed to a dozen top-selling books on the subject, and over 200 magazine articles. Schwartz runs a Perl training and consulting company (Stonehenge Consulting Services, Inc of Portland, Oregon), and is highly sought-after speaker for his masterful stage combination of technical skill, comedic timing, and crowd rapport. Schwartz is also infamous amongst the System Administration community for his arguable 1995 criminal conviction while performing activities for the Intel Corporation, and publicly advocates for appropriate computer crime laws. Randal is also a pretty good Karaoke singer, winning contests regularly.


Sal Soghoian is widely touted as "the" AppleScript Guru and driving force behind the continued expansion and acceptance of AppleScript. He began scripting in 1992, after discovering AppleScript could automate the publishing-related tasks at his service bureau. After spending years as an early "online evangelist," Sal continued to serve the AppleScript community as the AppleScript Product Manager at Apple. Throughout his tenure, AppleScript's importance, use, and integration has grown, becoming the indispensable tool for automation and communication on the Mac.


Since his origin as interstellar dust 15 billion years ago, Bebo White's interests have included computational physics, high energy physics, networked information retrieval, and programming languages, high performance computing, grid computing, and physics event visualization.

White has been described as "a historical Web artifact" because of his seminal involvement with World Wide Web technology and the introduction of the first website in the United States at the Stanford (University) Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC). More precisely White is an information specialist who spent two decades addressing the computing challenges of the SLAC physics community.

Mr. White is internationally recognized as one of the pioneers of the World Wide Web. He was introduced to Web technology during a sabbatical at Geneva's European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in 1989. His 1991 team participation in implementing SLAC's website, early advocacy for the Web, and his intense and ongoing involvement in Web technology have earned him the tag "the first U.S. Webmaster."

The 1996 MicroTimes 100 listed Bebo White in the ranks fof those making outstanding contributions to personal computing. He is a member of the International World Wide Web Conference Committee (IW3C2), and has been cited by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) as having made significant contributions to the development of WWW. White became a member of the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences in April 2002.

White's current research and passion focuses on Web Engineering (he is a Managing Editor of the Journal of Web Engineering) and Semantic Web applications. He serves as Chair of the IEEE Working Group on Web Engineering. Additional information can be found at

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