The Rest of the Mac Web (ROTMW) survey covers 41 independent Mac
Web sites not included in the November 2001 Best
of the Mac Web (BOTMW) survey. Many of these were nominated fans
of these sites.
This is a very diverse list of sites - and it's far from
exhaustive. There are probably another 100 or more independent
Mac-related sites out there.
One reason for this survey is to determine which sites should be
added to the Spring 2002 Best of the Mac Web survey.
We attempted to contact the publisher or webmaster of the sites
listed and give them the opportunity to add a link to the survey and
have the opinions of their visitors counted.
We encouraged publishers to link to the survey so we can poll a
broad cross-section of Mac Web visitors. With enough sites sending
their visitors, that keeps results from getting spiked by a strong
push from a single site, although that may be less true of this
survey, since it deals mostly with less known sites.
Voting took place from November 29 through December 9. Over 1,019
votes were cast; the Best of the Mac Web survey had well over 2,000
To some extent, this can't help but be a popularity contest, even
more so than in the more broadly based Best of the Mac Web survey.
Out two goals in this survey are learning what you, the reader, think
of these sites and seeing how well known they are. This is an opinion
poll, not a scientific survey.
With one exception, the sites that linked to the survey asked
their visitors to let the world know what they think, including
things like "how much you like our site." That's exactly what we
wanted, but we must make special note of MacMonkey, where members of
their forum not only encouraged everyone to rate the site "excellent"
but also posted details on how to circumvent the one user/one vote
setting on the poll. Further, the publisher promoted a campaign to
cast negative votes for Mac Monkies, whom they consider "posers."
Best of the Rest
Results of the Rest of the Mac Web survey cannot be directly
compared with the Best of the Mac Web survey since they were promoted
on different sites. The numbers after the site's name are its score
(on a scale of 1-5) and its popularity rank.
Railhead Design has an attractive design and that makes decent
use of frames (this from someone who generally doesn't like
frame). Then again, the site's focus is the interface, so it
stands to reason they'd have a nice design.
The best known site in the survey with 466 votes, MacDesktops
is where I go on the rare occasion that I want to change my
desktop picture. If you're tired of your desktop art, you're sure
to find something you'll like here.
For those who think the Mac doesn't have enough games,
emulation.net provides links to dozens of game system emulators.
Mac users can play games for Gameboy, Atari 2600, NES, and a host
of other game machines with software linked here.
Considering that laptops are expected to account for 25% of
all personal computer sales in the coming year, there probably
aren't enough good PowerBook sites out there. PowerBook Central is
one of the good ones and the highest rated PB site in this poll.
Especially nice: daily and weekly tracking of PowerBook and iBook
This is definitely a low-end site, and one members on
Low End Mac's email lists who
still use System 6 rave about. System 6 is especially suited for
the old 8 MHz compact Macs, since they are limited to
4 MB RAM and don't really have the horsepower to run System 7
We should have included the Macworld magazine site in the Best
of the Mac Web survey. It's very well know (#3 in this poll), as
is the magazine. That said, magazine-related sites don't always
understand the Web. The content usually translates nicely, but Web
users are looking for ongoing updates, not just monthly content.
As well known as it is, Macworld is rated #17 in this survey.
The only Mac site on the Web endorsed by Low End Mac, the
pickle's Low-End Mac FAQ has all sorts of useful and sometimes
obscure information about pre-PowerPC Macs. Lots of information.
Recommended to anyone working with 68000- to 68040-based
Ever visit a site you just don't get? MacDirectory is one of
them, and the home page really doesn't give you a clue what the
site's all about. While you may pop over to MacDirectory through a
link on MacSurfer, you'd
never even know the site had new content from the home page.
This is a Mac advocacy site pure and simple. John Droz created
"Should Our Schools" in response to mid-2000 attempts to have a
90% Mac school district standardize on Windows PCs. An excellent
resource for others engaged in that conflict at home, work,
school, or elsewhere.
Jag's House is the third site in this survey that specifically
supports older Macs. It's a wealth of information covering
everything from System software to getting a Mac Plus on the Net
to how to create a Mac floppy on a PC. The site doesn't have a lot
of visual polish, but the content is top notch.
Despite a blatant "vote early, vote often, vote excellent (I'm
gonna come visit you after borrowing Quadzy's broom!)" campaign,
MacMonkey showed up in the middle of the pack in popularity and
below the middle by user rating in the sites on this survey. (A
score of 3.13 would have made it 45th out of 56 on our Best of the
Mac Web survey.) We were less than impressed with the efforts of
MacMonkey forum members to trash the reputation of Mac Monkies and
teach users how to vote more than once.
Creative Mac has a very busy home page that looks more like
printed content than we're used to seeing on the Web. The site has
some interesting content and makes decent use of frames, but
you'll really want to use a big browser window (800 pixels wide or
so) to do the design justice.
The folks at Mac Home wondered why their site wasn't on the
Best of the Mac Survey. With a rating of 26 among the 41 sites in
this poll, I think we've answered their question. The MacHome site
is another case of a print publication not adapting well to the
world of the Web. On the positive side, it is the 11th best known
site in this survey.
Unfortunately greatly outdated, CCC used to be an invaluable
resource for troubleshooting the Mac. All those control panels and
extensions - CCC could help you determine what they did and what
you could do without.
I like the attitude at Mac Monkies. I don't know how much of
its 29th place rating was due to being negatively targeted by
MacMonkey, but I think this one is an up-and-comer. I'd like to
see them move to their own domain someday; being hosted on mac.com
just doesn't have the pinnace of your own domain.
Another reader submission, I'd never heard of MacNetv2 Daily
until the Best of the Mac Web survey feedback started coming in.
Considering how poorly known it is (34th out of 41 sites in this
survey), I guess I'm not alone. I see little about the site to
32. The iMac.com
How the mighty have fallen - three years ago iMac sites were
flying high (our iMac Channel got more traffic than the LEM home
page!). Most have thrown in the towel, but The iMac.com is hanging
in there. Barely. The latest update was November 13. The limited
hardware focus probably dooms the site in the long run, since the
iMac is seen today as just another part of the Apple lineup.
No, SpyMac isn't the lowest rated Mac rumor site in this
survey - there's still one more at #41. The site is relatively
obscure and claims to have information on something called iWalk,
which could be an Apple PDA.
Family-Mac is not a well known Mac ezine and the home page
isn't particularly inviting, but it's published some good,
thought-provoking content. Still fairly new, Family-Mac usually
produces a new issue around the 15th of the month. Watch for links
Most "average" rank: Jag's House, 22 or 23 in each
To answer the question raised by the readers who suggested some of
these sites, I think we've discovered why most of these were not
included in the Best of the Mac Web survey - a lot of them are not
well known and/or well respected.
We plan on including the following sites in the next Best of the
Mac Web survey, probably in March or April 2002. Apple History,
Emulation.net, EveryMac, MacDesktops, MacGamez.com, MacOSX Hints,
MacUpdate, Railhead Design, Stepwise, and PowerBook Central.
We are hoping to cover 50-60 sites in that survey, starting with
the 40 top sites from the "Best," adding the above sites from the
"Rest," and seeing what else seems appropriate at the time.
Thanks to everyone who suggested sites and everyone who voted in
this survey. It's very helpful to know which sites you're familiar
with and what you think of them.