I find an auction on eBay selling an old Mac and want to know the year or model of that unit, where do I turn? Gosh, there are dozens of really good old Mac sites but I don’t want to spend a couple of hours digging through them.
First thing I do- Google it! I use the best shortest phrase I can. Typically too, I’ll reword it a couple of times to see if I can discover any other sites that best match my search.
In the end, however, there is one site that consistently does the trick- Wikipedia. Most of you are familiar with this wonderful online encyclopedia, but if you aren’t then here’s a bit of info. Wikipedia is a user contributed database of everything you could ever want to know and its Apple/Mac pages are pretty darn good.
I particularly like that the “facts” of an article are hyperlinked so I can dig as deep as I want. Then I return to my Google search and hit many of the other results (most of the time they are vintage Mac machine sites) attempting to cross reference my findings, or see what additional info can be had.
For example, I did a search last night on the Apple IIc’s Flat Panel Display. Was able to reread history and factoids on the II and IIc, then hit the history of Apple’s displays– it provided what I was looking for on the Flat Panel Display itself.
In case you are wondering why in the world I don’t use one or more of the great Mac sites for info on vintage Macs, well I do. I typically use them to cross reference the factoids I found. They are there on the first page of the Google search I refer back to (and in the coming weeks, I’ll share many of those great Mac sites here too, cause they are really good!).
Granted, a Wiki can have incorrect info, so I don’t take it as gospel, but it is a great source to begin a search. And as of today there 3.5 million Wiki English articles, so the odds are you’ll find what you’re looking for- or at least something to point you in the right direction.