Memo from Russy-poo & computer missionaries

Hot news: here now!

As you requested, here’s hot news about The Secret Guide to Computers, the top-rated computer tutorial published by computer missionaries.

The Secret Guide’s 24th edition, for 1998, has come off the press! To get your copy of this hot new edition, use the coupon on the back page, which is flipped upside-down just as you’ll flip when you read this book!

The Secret Guide and our other services have been rated "best". They’ve been praised on The Wall Street Journal’s front page, and praised & used by CBS News, USA Today, The New York Times, PC Magazine, PC World, Infoworld, Byte, Mac User, The Australian, and dozens of other publications around the world.

The 23rd edition was praised for being the best computer book ever written. This 24th edition is even better! It contains over 1,000 improvements on the 23rd edition.

Reveals our new computer world

During the past year, computer hardware has improved dramatically — and prices have plunged — to create a totally new computer world. The 24th edition covers this new wonderful world:

faster CPU chips: 300-megahertz chips, Pentium 2 & AMD K6 MMX versus Pentium MMX

bigger, faster RAM: SDRAM, 64-megabyte machines, 16 megabytes for just $44, 8M video RAM

improved CD-ROMs: 24X, CD-Recordable, CD-RW, Digital Versatile Disks, DVD-R, DVD-RAM

improved magnetic disks: 8-gigabyte Ultra IDE, RAID, Zip, Laser-Servo LS-120, Panasonic PD/CD

faster modems: x2 (from 3Com & U.S. Robotics) versus K56flex (from Rockwell & Lucent) versus 33.6

improved cheap printers: Canon’s BJC-250 & BJC-4300, HP’s 400L & 6L, lower price on Epson 600

new discount dealers: PC Importers’ Unicent, Cleveland commandos, Nutrend, Cybermax versus her sister

changed reputations: hot news & controversy & advice about Apple, Quantex, Compaq, Dell, EPS

cheaper suites: Microsoft Office Small Business Edition, Microsoft Home Essentials, Word Perfect Suite

software-buying tricks: beta versions, academic versions, legal copying using the 80% rule

new ratings of Internet Service Providers: IBM, EarthLink, MindSpring, Erol’s, Galaxy, competitors

new Internet Web sites: devoted to menstruation, farts, dead people, your neighbors, astrological pranks

faster ways to input: Intellimouse, Dragon’s Naturally Speaking, IBM’s Via Voice, Ctrl accents in Word

Bill Gates’ wealth: how much is 40 billion dollars?, what’s a microbill?

If you’ve wished for an easier way to become an up-to-date computer expert, your wait is over: act now!

For years, we’ve dreamt the computer gods would someday provide powerful computers at prices we po’ folk could afford: under $1000. That day has finally come: computer prices have plunged so you can buy wonderful computers for under $1000 in your local stores — and get even better deals using the tricks in the 24th edition. Yes, this new edition documents the American computer dream — which is now our glorious reality.

Well, semi-glorious. Though hardware prices are amazingly great, software is still a mess. You still need a manual and a helping hand to bail you out. That’s why
the Guide still includes the
software tricks from earlier editions and still offers free help on our 24-hour hotline.

Massive pleasure

This massive edition’s 639 big pages cover everything important about computers — thousands of topics ranging from "accounting" to "zany sex". All topics are neatly grouped into 9 sections.

Buyer’s guide: chips, disks, screens, printers, other hardware, software, IBM-compatibles, Apple, alternative

Operating systems: Windows 95, Windows 3.1 & 3.11, MS-DOS, Mac system

Word processing: Microsoft Word, Ami Pro, Q&A Write, Word Perfect

Communication: Internet, fax, local-area networks

Spreadsheets: Excel, 1-2-3 & Quattro

Databases: Q&A File, advanced databases

Tricky applications: graphics, desktop publishing, multimedia, accounting, personal programs, games, AI

Programming: BASIC, DBASE, PASCAL, "C", LOGO, FORTRAN, COBOL, strange tongues, assembler

Endnotes: repairs, our past, your future, numerical analysis, index, coupons

This up-to-date edition is detailed, frank, and easy to read. Kids love its easy English; adults love its ruthless truths.

Includes the best

The 24th edition includes the best features of the 23rd.

For example, it turns you into an Internet expert.

We reveal the best Internet service providers (so you pay less for Internet service and connect without hassles). We tell you which Internet search engine is best (much better than Yahoo and Alta Vista!) and reveal tricks for finding the answer to any question fast, without being bombarded by irrelevant sites. You’ll be amazed by our shocking lists of best Internet Web sites, best Internet newsgroups, and e-mail addresses of celebrities. We explain Netscape Navigator and Internet Explorer, tutor you in advanced e-mail techniques (attachments, signatures, acronyms, and forwarding), and analyze how to contribute to a newsgroup by using Netiquette.

Moving beyond the Internet, we explain how send a computerized fax, create a network (free!) by using Interlnk, string network cables, and give classic Novell Netware commands.

We include a tutorial on software housecleaning, which is a new concept we’ve invented, unlike anything you’ll find in any other book. We give you the secret step-by-step procedure to make DOS, Windows 3.11, and Windows 95 run faster, better, and with fewer errors, by editing your CONFIG.SYS, AUTOEXEC.BAT, WIN.INI, .TMP, and display-driver files. Our advice is more accurate than the blather dished out by Microsoft. No longer do you need to phone us to tune up your system: the whole technique is here.

We also include:

a tutorial on Visual BASIC for Windows

a note on translating C to C++

a desktop-publishing chapter revealing our new publishing tricks

a virus chapter analyzing the workings of each prevalent virus (such as Stoned, Michelangelo, Monkey, Form, Anti-CMOS, file viruses, and Word macro viruses)

a dictionary of computer jargon

an expanded computer-industry phone book

So much for so little

Since we’re computer missionaries who don’t care about profit, we haven’t raised our book prices in over 15 years.

We still charge just $15 list, give discounts up to 67% (bringing the price down to $4.95 in quantity), offer our earlier editions for as little as 40¢, provide free shipping to all countries, and let you make copies of all our books, free! We also offer consulting about computers (and life!) free, day & night on our 24-hour live hotline, 617-666-2666.

Ten reasons

Here are ten reasons to buy the 24th edition:

1. It’s funny.

2. It’s easy to read.

3. It contains tricks you can’t find anywhere else.

4. It saves you big bucks when you buy hardware and software.

5. It brings you up-to-date and fills in the holes in your background.

6. It saves you from the frustration of calling ugly tech-support staffs.

7. Its groovy anecdotes will make you the hit of computer cocktail parties.

8. It makes you talk smart, so you’ll get a raise, better job, or sex.

9. You’ll get our BEST phone help if you say, "I have the 24th edition."

10. You get an obscenely huge discount if you buy copies for friends.

Many other authors tried to imitate our style — but failed.

We receive lots of fan mail from folks saying they love The Secret Guide to Computers much better than "Dummies" books and other dumb alternatives. We’ve been improving this book for 25 years, and it shows. Parts of this book are famous classics finely honed over the years; other parts expose the newest hot trends. Unlike long-winded books whose blubbering authors suffer from "diarrhea of the mouth", we don’t waste your time: we get right to the point!

For over 20 years, we’ve been listening to users’ questions on our hotline. This book contains all the answers. It’s the only book you ever need.

Surpasses the classics

This chart shows some popular topics and how we’ve expanded our treatment of them:

Topic Which editions discuss it

hardware concepts 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

repairs 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

viruses, software housecleaning 23 24

newest hardware & discounters 24

traditional Windows 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

Windows 95 fundamentals 21 22 23 24

advanced Windows 95 22 23 24

MS-DOS 3.3 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

MS-DOS 4 & 5 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

MS-DOS 6 fundamentals 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

advanced MS-DOS 6 & 6.2 19 20 21 22 23 24

Mac System 6 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

Mac System 7 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

Word Perfect fundamentals 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

advanced Word Perfect 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

Microsoft Word fundamentals 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

advanced Microsoft Word 20 21 22 23 24

Internet 22 23 24

advanced Internet, fax 23 24

1-2-3, Quattro, Excel 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

advanced Excel 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

Q&A 3, DBASE 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

Q&A 4 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

GWBASIC, PASCAL, C 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

QBASIC fundamentals 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

advanced QBASIC 21 22 23 24

Visual BASIC 23 24

The 24th edition covers all those topics. The 14th covers few.

Discounts

Though the 24th edition is huge, it lists for just $15. To pay even less, join your friends and place a group order:

You get a 20% discount for 2 copies, so you pay $12 per copy.

You get a 40% discount for 4 copies, so you pay $9 per copy.

You get a 60% discount for 60 copies, so you pay $6 per copy.

You get a 67% discount for 666 copies, so you pay $4.95 per copy.

Use your past If you got a discount on an old edition (because you bought many copies), you get the same discount on the 24th. On your order, write "discount because of old edition purchases" and your phone number.

Free reprints

Since we’re computer missionaries who don’t care about profit, you can copy this book, free!

Make as many copies as you like, and don’t pay us a cent! Give the copies to your friends & colleagues, or sell the copies and keep all money yourself, making yourself a publisher! To train colleagues on a particular computer topic, copy whatever pages your colleagues wish, making you a hero.

Just phone us first, begin your reprint with an acknowledgment paragraph (from the book’s page 9), and send us a copy of your reprint.

Disks

Instead of books printed on paper, you can request books printed on disks. Example: when ordering 4 books, you can jot a note saying "Send 3 on paper and 1 on disks."

Say which format you want: choose either ASCII or Microsoft Word for Windows. You’ll get a set of 1.44M IBM disks.

If you get books on disks, get at least one book on paper since the disks do not contain headlines, graphics, special symbols, and font definitions. Though the disks are not packaged for beginners, the disks help teachers (wanting to copy our writing or post it on the Internet) and help the blind.

Famous classics

For bargain hunters, we’ve reprinted previous editions and offer them at new, low prices. Their unique charms have made reviewers call them "famous classics". Though their essentials have been copied into the 24th edition, they remain popular because they contain thousands of tidbits not in the 24th edition, reveal extra secrets about older computers, and cost you nearly nothing. Here’s what you pay:

just 40¢ for edition 11

just $1 each for editions 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, and 18

just $2 for edition 19

just $3 for edition 20

just $4 each for editions 21 and 22

just $8 for edition 23

The following editions are amazing bargains:

Edition 11 contains a whopping 750 pages. Yes, it’s even bigger than the 24th edition! Since edition 11 is so big, we had to bind it in two volumes. Volume 1, "The Main Secrets", contains 351 pages, explaining hardware concepts, wild applications, and BASIC’s essentials. Volume 2, "Deep Secrets", digs even deeper: its 399 pages explain BASIC’s advanced tricks, PASCAL, FORTRAN, COBOL, and exotic languages. We’ve sold thousands of copies of that 2-volume set at its list price of $28 or $29.90, but now the entire set is yours for a total of just 40¢! By charging just 40¢ and not charging for postage, we lose money; but that’s fine, since we’re computer missionaries not looking to profit. When you order the 11th edition, we’ll send you the special "B" version whose cover includes Russy-poo’s photo. You’ll be surprised. (Heh, heh!)

Editions 18, 19, and 20 analyze the pinnacle of classical computing, when computer life was still simple, before Bill Gates gave us headaches using Windows 95 and the Internet. If you’re using a pre-95 computer, these books are ideal. Edition 18 covers all essential computer topics and costs just $1! Edition 19 ($2) is bigger because it includes extras about tricky hardware, discounters, and advanced DOS. Edition 20 ($3) includes more about Microsoft Word and updated hardware. Get whichever edition you wish. Heck, at those prices, buy them all and share with friends!

Edition 22 is the cheapest way to learn Windows 95 and the Internet: it costs just $4 and includes those topics plus more!

Edition 23 is very similar to the 24th edition but costs just $8 instead of $15. At $8, it’s a steal!

To get those editions, use the coupon on the back page. To get other editions, just jot a note saying what you want. (Editions 1-10 are sold out.)

On editions 12 through 22, the covers have a blemish (bend, scratch, nick, or bubble), but the contents are fine.

Personal help

Free help

Whenever you have questions about computers — or life! — call our hotline. Russ will answer your questions FREE, even if they’re technical or personal.

Call day or night, 24 hours: Russ is almost always in and sleeps only lightly. Just dial the area code for Boston (617), then our devilish little number: 666-2666.

Russ will help you:

find the best discount dealers, select computer hardware & software

use whatever hardware & software you have, debug the programs

find new meaning in your computerized life, advance your career

answer all questions — from the cosmic to the kooky

Each month, Russ answers thousands of calls from all over the world. To handle them all, he answers briefly, to-the-point. If the book answers your question, he’ll tell you which pages to read; after you’ve read them, he’ll give you further details that dig even deeper.

"Blitz" course

Our famous "blitz" course uses intensive psychological techniques to turn you into a computer expert in one weekend. The course has an astounding track record: the heads of many computer companies got their start by taking this course.

It was even featured on the front page of The Wall Street Journal. The Journal’s article praised it, quoted the graduates, and showed a picture of Russ in his guru gown with his spear that pokes holes in primitive software.

Beginners enjoy the course because it’s easy to understand and fun. (Our philosophy is: "Giggle while you learn.") Advanced computerists enjoy the course because it offers insights you can’t find anywhere else.

You’ll be taught by Russ personally, with the help of his staff, fancy video devices, and oodles of computer devices and software packages he brings.

Each time we give this course, many computer teachers come to spy on us and copy our high-energy techniques. (We welcome spies!)

The course covers all 9 sections of The Secret Guide’s 24th edition. For each section, the course picks the most crucial parts and digs into them more deeply than the Guide.

Schedule We pack 20 hours of instruction into one intensive weekend. We run on Saturday from 9AM to 9PM, and on Sunday from 9AM to 5PM:

Saturday Sunday

9AM buyer’s guide (& lunch) 9AM databases

2PM operating systems 11AM tricky applications (& lunch)

4PM word processing 2PM programming

6PM communication (& dinner) 4PM endnotes

8PM spreadsheets 5PM end

9PM end

Get a slave During the course, Russ is your slave: anything you want, you get. Russ adjusts the schedule to spend more time on the topics that specially interest you.

Low cost We charge just $30 for Saturday, $20 for Sunday. That comes to just $2.50 per hour! (Most other computer experts charge ten times as much — and teach less!)

When We’ve given such courses hundreds of times. We give them occasionally in many cities across America and worldwide. We’ll give them again soon! To get on our mailing list to receive a list of cities & dates, use coupon on next page.

Private tutoring & consulting

Russ also offers private courses, extravaganzas (which wow large audiences), and long courses (which last several weeks). He travels all over the world. He’ll tutor you privately or in a group with your family, friends, and colleagues. He’ll be your teacher, consultant, and guide.

Russ charges just $60 per hour, even if the audience is big. For example, if you want Russ to train a group of 1000 people for an hour, the total charge is just $60. That’s just 6 cents per person. Where else can you get an education so cheap?

If you’re outside the Boston area, there’s a location charge:

$0 for Boston, Brookline, Somerville, Cambridge

$60 for elsewhere inside route 128

$180 for elsewhere in New England (MA, ME, NH, VT, RI, CT)

$360 for mid-Atlantic states (NY, NJ, PA, DE, MD, DC)

$600 for any other state or country

For example, a four-hour speech to a group of a thousand people in Siberia costs a total of $60+$60+$60+$60+$600.

You have no extra expenses. For example, Russ does not charge for his preparation time, lodging, or plane tickets.

The hours must be consecutive. If you sign up for 12 consecutive hours, you get the next 12 free.

Russ is famous for giving multi-day marathons to large groups. For such marathons in the Northeast, Russ brings computers and extra staff, at no extra charge.

Instead of getting Russ’s tutoring, you can learn more cheaply in six ways:

read the Guide

get free tutoring from Russ by phone

attend the blitz courses

join your friends in a group, so you can divvy up Russ’s fee

buy many books, then ask Russ to give a free speech to your group

hire Russ’s associates, who charge just $15-$25 per hour

For more details — and to find out which months Russ is available — phone Russ at 617-666-2666, 24 hours.

Drop in

Drop in anytime, 24 hours. We’re in Somerville, which is next to Boston. Come use our free library, which contains the world’s best computer books, magazines, and manuals.

Phone us first at 617-666-2666, and use these directions.

By subway: simple! Take the Red Subway Line to Porter Square station. Go up the escalators until you see the street, then walk out the door on your right.

Walk up White Street, which is between the gigantic parking lot and the Porter Square Arcade. At the end of that street, take a right onto Elm (which is unmarked); next left, onto Cherry; next right, onto Sartwell; next left, onto Ashland.

We’re the third building on the right. It’s brown, #22.

By car: weird! Because of one-way streets and parking regulations, drive in a circle, as follows.…

Go to Massachusetts Avenue in Cambridge. At the light just west of Porter Square, turn north onto Beech Street.

At the fork (2 blocks ahead), continue straight ahead onto Willow, a tiny street. Be sure to see the sign saying "Willow".

Take the next right, onto Summer Street. At the next light, take a right onto Cedar; next right, onto Sartwell; next right, onto Ashland. We’re the third building on right; it’s brown, #22.

Park on the left side of Ashland. (Nights, weekends, and summers, you can also park in the lot at the corner of Sartwell and Ashland.)

Praised by reviewers

Praised by computer magazines

All the famous computer magazines call Russ Walter "Boston’s computer guru" and praise him for giving free consulting even in the middle of the night. Here’s how they evaluate The Secret Guide to Computers.…

PC World: "Russ Walter is a PC pioneer, a trailblazer, the user’s champion. Nobody does a more thorough, practical, and entertaining job of teaching PC technology. His incomparable Guide receives nothing but praise for its scope, wit, and enormous practicality. It offers a generous compendium of industry gossip, buying advice, and detailed, foolproof tutorials. It’s a wonderful bargain."

Byte: "The Guide is amazing. If you need to understand computers and haven’t had much luck at it, or have to teach other people about computers, or just want to read a good book about computers, get the Guide."

Computer Currents: "Your computer literacy quotient will always come up short unless you know something about Russ Walter. He’s a folk hero. He knows virtually everything about personal computers and makes learning about computers fun. If you’ve given up in disgust and dismay at reading other computer books, get the Guide. It should be next to every PC in the country. PC vendors would do themselves and their customers a big favor by packing a copy of the Guide with every computer that goes out the door. The Guide deserves the very highest recommendation."

PC Magazine: "The Guide explains the computer industry, hardware, languages, operating systems, and applications in a knowledgeable and amusing fashion. It includes Russ Walter’s unbiased view of the successes and failures of various companies, replete with inside gossip. By working your way through it, you’ll know more than many who make their living with PCs. Whether novice or expert, you’ll learn from the Guide and have a good time doing so. No other computer book is a better value."

Abacus: "Alternative-culture Walter provides the best current treatment of programming languages. It’s irreverent, reminiscent of the underground books of the 1960’s. It’s simple to read, fast-paced, surprisingly complete, full of locker-room computer gossip, and loaded with examples."

Infoworld: "Russ Walter is recognized and respected in many parts of the country as a knowledgeable and effective instructor. His Guide is readable, outrageous, and includes a wealth of information."

Mac User: "It’s an everything-under-one-roof computer technology guide."

Computerworld: "The Guide by unconventional computer guru Russ Walter is informative and entertaining."

Computer Shopper: "The Guide covers the entire spectrum. It’s incredibly informative and amusing."

Home Office Computing: "Russ Walter is a computer missionary who’s a success story."

Classroom Computer Learning: "Russ Walter’s courses are intensive and inexpensive."

Compute: "Russ Walter is an industry leader."

 

Praised by the classics Earlier editions of the Guide were praised by all the classic computer magazines.

Popular Computing: "Russ Walter is king of the East Coast computer cognoscenti. His Guide is the biggest bargain in computer tutorials in our hemisphere. If CBS ever decides to replace Andy Rooney with a `60 Minutes’ computer pundit, they’d need to look no further than Russ Walter. His wry Walterian observations enliven nearly every page of his book. His Guide is the first collection of computer writings that one might dare call literature."

Personal Computing: "The Guide is bulging with information. You’ll enjoy it. Russ Walter’s approach to text-writing sets a new style that other authors might do well to follow. It’s readable, instructive, and downright entertaining. If more college texts were written in the Russ Walter style, more college students would reach their commencement day."

Creative Computing: "The Guide is fascinating, easy to understand, an excellent book at a ridiculously low price. We especially endorse it."

Cider Press: "The Guide should be given to all beginners with the purchase of their computers."

Softalk: "The Guide fires well-deserved salvos at many sacred cows. It’s long been a cult hit."

Computer Bargain Info: "The Guide is widely acclaimed by experts as brilliant."

Eighty Micro: "Theatrical, madcap Russ is a cult hero."

Interface Age: "The Guide is a best buy."

Enter: "It’s the best book about computer languages."

Microcomputing: "Plan ahead; get in on the Secret now."

Praised by mass-market magazines

Mass-market magazines call the Guide amazing.

Scientific American: "The Guide is irresistible. Every instruction leads to a useful result. Walter’s candor shines; he makes clear the faults and foibles others ignore or cast in vague hints. The effect is that of a private conversation with a well-informed talkative friend who knows the inside story. The text reads like the patter of a talented midnight disc jockey; it’s flip, self-deprecatory, randy, and good-humored. His useful frank content and coherent style are unique. First-rate advice on what and how to buy are part of the rich mix. No room holding a small computer and an adult learning to use it is well equipped without the Guide."

The Whole Earth Catalog in its "Coevolution Quarterly": "The personal-computer subculture was noted for its fierce honesty in its early years. The Guide is one of the few intro books to carry on that tradition, and the only introductory survey of equipment that’s kept up to date. Russ Walter jokes, bitches, enthuses, condemns, and charms. The book tells the bald truth in comprehensible language."

Omni: "Guru Russ Walter sympathizes deeply with people facing a system crash at midnight, so he broadcasts his home phone number and answers calls by the light of his computers, cursors winking. He’s considered an excellent teacher. His Guide is utterly comprehensive."

Changing Times: "Russ Walter is a computer whiz whose mission is to educate people about computers. Like a doctor, he lets strangers call him in the middle of the night for help with diagnosing a sick computer. His Guide covers everything you ever wanted to know."

Esquire: "The handy Guide contains lots of fact and opinion untainted by bias."

Barron’s: "Russ Walter is an expert who answers questions for free and has been inundated by calls."

Praised by computer clubs

Computer clubs call the Guide the best computer book, in their newsletters, newspapers, and magazines.

Boston Computer Society: "The Guide is cleverly graduated, outrageous, and funny. Russ Walter turns computerese into plain speaking, while making you giggle. He’s years ahead of the pack that claims to have ways of instructing computer novices. His unique mix of zany humor and step-by-step instruction avoids the mistakes of manuals that attempt to follow his lead."

Connecticut Computer Society: "Russ Walter’s books have been used by insiders for years. He’s special as a teacher because of three factors: his comprehensive knowledge of many computers and their languages, operating system, and applications; his ability to break complicated processes into the smallest components; and his humor. A valuable feature of the Guide is his candid comments about various computers and software. He’s one of the few people able to review languages, machines, and software, all in a humorous, clear manner, with the whole endeavor set off by his sense of industry perspective, history, and culture. If you’re ever struck with a computer problem, give Russ a call."

New England Computer Society: "Russ Walter is considered one of the few true computer gurus. His Guide is the world’s best tutorial. It’s the single best present anyone could receive who cares to know more about computers without going crazy."

New York’s "NYPC": "The Guide is the perfect text for anyone beginning to learn about computers because it contains real info in readable form about a range of subjects otherwise requiring a whole reference library. It’s even better for the experienced computer user, since it also contains many, many advanced concepts that one person could hardly remember. But one person apparently remembered them all: Russ Walter. He’s a fountain of computer knowledge and can even explain it in words of one syllable. His Guide reads like a novel: you can read simply for fun. It’s recommended to anyone from rank beginner to seasoned power user."

Sacramento (California) PC Users Group: "The Guide is the best collection of computer help ever written. It includes just about everything you’d want to know about computers. You’ll find answers for all the questions you thought of and some you didn’t think of. No holds barred, Walter even tells you who in the industry made the mistakes and rotten computers, and who seemed to succeed in spite of themselves. The Guide is fascinating. It’s recommended for anyone even slightly interested in computers."

Praised by librarians

Librarians call the Guide the best computer book ever written.

School Library Journal: "The Guide is a gold mine of information. It’s crystal clear, while at the same time Walter delivers a laugh a paragraph along with a lot of excellent info. It’s accessible even to kids, who will love its loony humor. Buy it; you’ll like it."

Wilson Library Bulletin: "The Guide is distinguished by its blend of clarity, organization, and humor. It cuts through the techno-haze. It packs more simple, fresh explication per page than anything else available."

Praised around the world

The Guide is praised by newspapers around the world.

Australia’s "Sydney Morning Herald": "The Guide is the best computer intro published anywhere in the world. It gives a total overview of personal computers. It’s stimulating, educational, provocative, and a damn good read."

The Australian: "The Guide’s coverage of programming is intelligent, urbane, extremely funny, and full of great ideas."

England’s "Manchester Guardian": "Russ Walter is a welcome relief. The internationally renowned computer guru tries to keep computerdom’s honesty alive. His Guide is an extraordinary source of information."

Silicon Valley’s "Times Tribune": "The Guide invites you to throw aside all rules of conventional texts and plunge into the computer world entirely naked and unafraid. This book makes learning not only fun, but hilarious, inspiring, and addicting."

Dallas Times Herald: "Easily the best beginners’ book seen, it’s not just for beginners. Its strength is how simple it makes everything, without sacrificing what matters."

Detroit News: "Russ Walter is a legendary teacher. His fiercely honest Guide packs an incredible amount of info. It’s the only book that includes everything. He gives you all the dirt about the companies and their hardware, evaluates their business practices, and exposes problems they try to hide. Phone him. You’ll always get a truthful answer."

Chicago Tribune: "The Guide is the best computer book. It’s a cornucopia of computer delights written by Russ Walter, a great altruist and dreamer."

Kentucky’s "Louisville Courier": "Walter’s Guide will teach you more computer fundamentals than the thick books in the average bookstore. The Guide gives his no-bull insights. He not only discusses computer mail-order sources, which most books avoid; he names the bad guys. The Guide’s biggest appeal is its humor, wit, and personality."

Philadelphia Inquirer: "Russ Walter is the Ann Landers for computer klutzes, a high-tech hero. His wacky, massive Guide is filled with his folksy wit."

New York Times: "The computer-obsessed will revel in Walter’s Guide. He covers just about every subject in the microcomputer universe. It’s unlikely you have a question his book doesn’t answer."

Wall Street Journal: "Russ Walter is a computer expert, a guru who doesn’t mind phone calls. He brings religious-like fervor to the digital world. His students are grateful. His Guide gets good reviews. He’s influential."

Connecticut’s "Hartford Courant": "If you plan to buy a personal computer, the best gift to give yourself is the Guide. It’s crammed with info. It became an instant success as one of the few microcomputer books that was not only understandable and inexpensive but also witty — a combination still too rare today."

Boston Globe: "Russ Walter is a unique resource, important to beginning and advanced users. His Guide is practical, down-to-earth, and easy to read."

Boston Phoenix: "Russ Walter has achieved international cult status. He knows his stuff, and his comprehensive Guide is a great deal."

Coupon

To get books or free brochures, you can use the coupon on this page. If you have questions, phone us at 617-666-2666, 24 hours (almost always in).

Which books to order

To become a totally up-to-date expert, order the 24th edition.

Classic editions cover similar topics but with classic charm and at lower cost. They make ideal low-cost gifts.

Money-back guarantee

If you’re not sure whether to order a book, go ahead: you can return unused books anytime for a 100% refund.

Phone & purchase orders

You can order by phoning 617-666-2666 (or using a purchase order) if you’re employed by (or retired from) an established computer company, bookstore, school, government agency, or public utility or if you bought at least 10 books from us before. Give us your address and phone number. We’ll ship the books with a bill, due in 30 days.

Other countries

We accept all checks, money orders, and cash from all countries. Pay in U.S. dollars or the equivalent amount of foreign currency. We convert foreign currency and send you change.

Though we accept all checks, you’ll get faster processing by sending cash or an international postal money order (from Canada denominated in U.S. dollars) or a foreign check (from any country) denominated in U.S. dollars and having a U.S. or Canadian city printed somewhere on the check.

Review copies

If you write reviews for magazines, run a big computer department, teach many computer students, or plan to introduce the book to at least 100 people, phone 617-666-2666 to request a complimentary book for review.



CUT OUT THIS COUPON

New 24th edition

How many copies do you want of the hot, new 24th edition? _____

1 copy costs $15.

2 copies cost $12 each ($24 total).

4-39 copies cost $9 each.

60-549 copies cost $6 each.

666 copies & up cost $4.95 each.

Don’t order 3 copies (order 4 instead).

Don’t order 40-59 copies (order 60 instead).

Don’t order 550-665 copies (order 666 instead).

Classic editions (with blemished covers)

How many copies do you want of famous edition 11 (40¢)? _____

How many copies do you want of famous edition 18 ($1)? _____

How many copies do you want of famous edition 19 ($2)? _____

How many copies do you want of famous edition 20 ($3)? _____

How many copies do you want of famous edition 22 ($4)? _____

How many copies do you want of famous edition 23 ($8)? _____

Free brochures & bulletins

How many free copies do you want of this letter, for friends? _____

To get free Secret Bulletins (revealing courses, videos, The Secret Guide to Tricky Living, and future editions of The Secret Guide to Computers), put ´ in this box: q

Final steps

Print your name and address:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total the cost of all your books.

If you’re not in Massachusetts, we don’t have to charge tax.

If you’re in Massachusetts, add 5% tax:

Price 40¢ $1 $2 $3 $4 $8 $15 $15.40 $24 $36 $45 $54 $360

Tax 2¢ 5¢ 10¢ 15¢ 20¢ 40¢ 75¢ $.77 $1.20 $1.80 $2.25 $2.70 $18

We ship all over the world. We charge nothing for standard shipping. We charge amazingly little for rush shipping. Mark the shipping method you prefer:

q Standard shipping is free. It usually takes 1 week to ZIP codes below 27000, 2 weeks to the rest of the USA, 3 weeks to Canada, 6 weeks to all other countries. We usually ship by the post office’s Standard Surface Book-Rate Mail. We charge you nothing.

q UPS is faster. It usually takes 2 days to ZIP codes below 27000, 1 week to the rest of the USA. You must be in the USA’s original 48 states or DC (not in AK, HI, PR, APO, or FPO), order at least 2 books, and give a single street address (not a PO Box, not several addresses). We charge just $3 total. That’s your total shipping charge, even if your order is huge, even if thousands of books!

q Air is the fastest. It usually takes 2 days to the USA, 1 week to Canada, Britain, France, Germany, Japan, Australia, & New Zealand, 2 weeks to other countries. We usually ship by the post office’s Priority Air Mail. We charge $3 per book to the USA, $7 per book to all other countries.

Send check (made out to The Secret Guide to Computers), money order, or cash to:

The Secret Guide to Computers

22 Ashland St., Floor 2

Somerville MA 02144-3202

 

Coupon

To get books or free brochures, you can use the coupon below. If you have questions, phone us at 617-666-2666, 24 hours (almost always in).

To get totally up-to-date, order the 24th edition. Classic editions cover similar topics but with classic charm and at lower cost; they make ideal low-cost gifts.

Not sure whether to order? Go ahead! Return unused books anytime for full refund.

You can order by phoning 617-666-2666 (or using a purchase order) if you’re employed by (or retired from) an established computer company, bookstore, school, government agency, or public utility or you bought at least 10 books from us before. Give your address and phone number. We’ll ship books with a bill, due in 30 days.

If you write reviews for magazines, run a big computer department, teach many students, or will introduce the book to at least 100 people, phone for review copies.



CUT OUT THIS COUPON

New 24th edition

How many copies do you want of the hot, new 24th edition? ___

1 copy costs $15. 2 copies cost $12 each. 4-39 copies cost $9 each. 60-549 copies cost $6 each. 666 & up cost $4.95 each. (Don’t order 3, 40-59, or 550-665 copies.)

Classic editions (with blemished covers)

Write here how many copies you want of edition 11 (40¢):___ edition 18 ($1):___

edition 19 ($2):___ edition 20 ($3):___ edition 22 ($4):___ edition 23 ($8):___

Free brochures & bulletins

How many free copies do you want of this letter, for friends? ___

For free bulletins (on courses, videos, future editions, other books), put ´ in box: q

Final steps

Print your name and address:

 

 

 

 

 

Total the cost of all your books. Just if you’re in Massachusetts, add 5% tax:

Price 40¢ $1 $2 $3 $4 $8 $15 $15.40 $24 $36 $45 $54 $360

Tax 2¢ 5¢ 10¢ 15¢ 20¢ 40¢ 75¢ $.77 $1.20 $1.80 $2.25 $2.70 $18

We ship all over the world. Mark the shipping method you prefer:

q Standard shipping is free. It usually takes 1 week to ZIP codes below 27000, 2 weeks to rest of USA, 3 weeks to Canada, 6 weeks to other countries; usually by post office. We charge nothing.

q UPS is faster. It usually takes 2 days to ZIP codes below 27000, 1 week to the rest of the USA. You must be in the USA’s original 48 states or DC (not in AK, HI, PR, APO, or FPO), order at least 2 books, and give a single street address (not a PO Box, not several addresses). We charge just $3 total. That’s your total shipping charge, even if your order is huge, even if thousands of books!

q Air is the fastest. It usually takes 2 days to the USA, 1 week to Canada, Britain, France, Germany, Japan, Australia, & New Zealand, 2 weeks to other countries. We usually ship by the post office’s Priority Air Mail. We charge $3 per book to the USA, $7 per book to all other countries.

Send check (made out to The Secret Guide to Computers), money order, or cash to The Secret Guide to Computers, 22 Ashland St. (Floor 2), Somerville, MA 02144-3202.

This letter contains secrets you requested

from Russ Walter, Publisher

The Secret Guide to Computers

Phone (617) 666-2666 (24 hours)

22 Ashland St.

Somerville MA 02144-3202

 

 

FIRST-CLASS LETTER