Last week I got a little busy and didn't have the chance to post a business of the week. (Sorry about that). So I'm going to make it up this week by telling you about two Mac-based businesses under one roof. This week's Mac EvangeList Businesses of the Week Are:
GREEN DRAGON CREATIONS and WATER VALLEY INTERCHANGE
I had the pleasure of meeting the owner of both businesses, Howard Shere, a few years ago when I worked for Apple. I was on one of my many trips between Wisconsin and New Orleans, and stopped in to visit because Green Dragon was one of the developers Apple's Games Evangelist worked with. Green Dragon is a (mostly) Mac-only developer that specializes in games and drivers. Water Valley Interchange is a Mac-based ISP. Both are located in North Central Mississippi.
The thing I remember most about my visit is the dedication Howard and his staff have to the Mac platform - and the dedication his ISP customers have to him. I'll let him share the rest in his own words:
"I run an ISP which is nearly all run on Macs. We now do our Web server and Radius servers on Linux because we finally needed more power from our old machines, but we still do everything else on Macs.
"When I first started this business 6 years ago, my UNIX and Windows friends said that the Macs would be fine as servers until we got bigger. They kept telling me this everytime we doubled in size. They finally gave up. It wasn't until we hit 3500 customers and 100 hosted domains that we finally had to use Linux for our Web hosting and radius authentication.
"We have just hit 4500 customers and we are still growing.
"Using Macs as our servers has meant that instead of hiring an expensive sysadmin, I can train high school kids to maintain our network. Using MacOS for our servers has been a great business decision for me.
"We also hire high school kids as tech support. They help our windows customers get online. The Mac customers almost never seem to call for support.
"The high school kids come into our office from the Wintel world of their school and learn to work on a Mac. Most of them now have Macs at home."
Howard has also written a nifty utility for the Archos Jukebox 6000, which is a 6GB USB Hard Drive that is also an MP3 player. His utility, MacEmThreeYou, is free and can be accessed here.
You can learn more about Green Dragon here.
You can learn more about Water Valley Interchange here.
Howard Shere can be contacted directly at either email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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