The past few months (and indeed, the entire year) have been trying times for us all. But that's all the more reason to come together and think of others this holiday season. We and a number of people on TidBITS Talk have attempted to help that process along this year with the many gift suggestions you've read about above. And should we poor journalists, toiling away in unheated garrets with only our PowerBooks to keep our fingers warm, be included in your holiday thoughts, there are a few gifts you can give this year that help support everything we do here at TidBITS. (Of course, just reading TidBITS each week is always a help as well!)
Gift Subscriptions -- Christian Heurich was first off the mark with this suggestion. "Make certain your significant other and interested parties subscribe to TidBITS!" Thanks, Christian, and the easiest gift you can give to a Mac-interested friend that will keep giving into the future is indeed a subscription to TidBITS. You can just tell them to subscribe by sending email to <firstname.lastname@example.org>, or you can do it for them at our subscription Web page (but please, make sure they know you're signing them up so they don't think we're spamming them, and so they realize they'll have to reply to the confirmation request message).
Support Our Sponsors -- While you're finishing off your holiday shopping, patronizing the companies that sponsor TidBITS also helps us (as a bonus, let them know your business is in part related to their support of TidBITS). For an extensive selection of hardware (and some software), visit Small Dog Electronics; for hard disks and other storage devices, try APS Technologies; for anyone who needs a powerful text-based HTML or programming editor, check out BBEdit from Bare Bones Software; for the networker in all of us, Sustainable Softworks produces a great collection of network utilities in IPNetRouter, IPNetSentry, IPNetMonitor, IPNetTuner, and the new IPNetShareX; and finally, for anyone who needs to learn one or more of the major Macintosh applications, there are MacAcademy's training materials.
Other companies have sponsored TidBITS over the past year, and we'd encourage you to support them as well. Some may be planning to sponsor again in the future, and hearing that their sponsorship of TidBITS was a factor in a purchasing decision encourages future support. These companies include Aladdin Systems, Farallon, Blue World Communications, CS Odessa, Web Crossing, easyDNS, and Intelli-Gents.
New TidBITS Stuff with Free Shipping -- Last year we started selling t-shirts and various other items through CafePress.com. Although we never got around to the design contests we planned on, we have now modified our existing design (removing the "TidBITS readers get it weekly" phrase that troubled some people) and introducing a new design based on the Caring for Wrists poster that Jon.Hersh designed for us many years ago (and which you can still download and print to remind yourself of ways of preventing repetitive stress injuries).
The new design is a graphical reminder of how to sit in the proper ergonomic position, and we've put it on mugs, mousepads, and a t-shirt (if anyone wants it on something else CafePress.com sells, just let me know - but we couldn't imagine anyone wanting ergonomic reminders on their boxer shorts). For the main design, we also added a number of products, including an ornament (a TidBITS Christmas tree ornament was just too silly to pass up, although we did avoid the stuffed bear and a stocking), a hooded sweatshirt, a tank top, a baseball hat, a bucket hat, boxer shorts, and a tote bag (great for storing the objects you pick up on the Macworld Expo show floor). Some, such as the ornament and the hooded sweatshirt, are available only through the end of the year. As always, discounts are available to contributors, and everyone (in the U.S) gets free shipping on orders over $50 through 17-Dec-01.
Gift Contributions -- Finally, Matt Lewkowicz helped us get over our shyness with this suggestion. "I know Adam won't say it on his own. Give a TidBITS contribution to a friend! Support TidBITS two ways; monetarily and with name recognition." Matt's recommendation spurred us to modify our Kagi contributions page to make it easy to contribute to TidBITS in someone else's name, and as an added bonus, I'll personally send an acknowledgment to the recipient of the gift. Plus, although we have no automation behind it, you can also donate via PayPal to <email@example.com>.