A history of VMUG and iMug 1985–2020: In conclusion

By Noel Jackling OAM

VMUG was born in an era when no adults and few children learned to use computers at school. Its beginnings corresponded with the introduction of 'white' screens, the graphic user interface, WYSIWYG 'What you see is what you get', and affordable desktop publishing with laser printers.

The Internet had not yet advanced to community use. So user groups were formed of which VMUG was one, to share information and experience about new hardware and software products. Face-to-face meetings and Newsletters were the primary means of communication. The need was great, and these user groups boomed.

As the Internet penetrated society, the means of communication changed. Information became almost instantly available either on the World Wide Web or on email group lists or similar, and Newsletters largely became irrelevant. And the next generation learned what they needed to know about computing at school.

So user groups lessened in their importance to society, but remained a useful tool for some.

VMUG surged through the first of these phases and then faded away almost into oblivion. Nevertheless, its email group List, probably coupled with limited ongoing face-to-face meetings, has seen it survive as the Internet Macintosh User Group.

As society itself changes, the challenge for iMug is to adapt to Society's new computing needs.

6 February 2022

Next: Appendix 1 - Four special December meetings

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Table of Contents

  1. The early years
  2. The 1990s—rapid rise and rapid decline
  3. VMUG News
  4. VMUG premises in Ross House
  5. Help Desk, Computer Training and Public Domain Software
  6. Meetings
  7. The rise and impact of the Internet
  8. iMug Apple Collection at Museum Victoria
  9. An odd occasion
  10. iMug Widget—a small feature to advertise meetings
  11. A few prominent VMUG/iMug members
  12. In conclusion
  13. Appendix 1 - Four special December meetings
  14. Appendix 2 - Apple Effect timeline banner 1976–1990
  15. Appendix 3 - Apple Effect timeline banner 1990–2006
  16. Appendix 4 - Libretto to 'An Apple a Day'
  17. Appendix 5 - Libretto to 'The Very Model of a Modern Apple MacBook Pro'
  18. Appendix 6 - Office Bearers
  19. Appendix 7 - Life Members

Download the entire History of VMUG and iMug 1985–2020 as a PDF.