Robin Williams (writer)

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Robin Patricia Williams
Born (1953-10-09) October 9, 1953 (age 67)
Berkeley, California
OccupationNon-fiction writer; graphic designer; teacher; lecturer on Shakespeare
Period1989 – present
SubjectComputers; graphic design; Shakespeare

Robin Patricia Williams (born October 9, 1953) is an American educator who has authored many popular computer-related books, as well as the book Sweet Swan of Avon: Did a Woman Write Shakespeare?.[1] Among her computer books are manuals of style The Mac is Not a Typewriter and The Non-Designer's Design Book, as well as numerous manuals for various macOS operating systems and applications, including The Little Mac Book.[2] "Through her writing, teaching, and seminars, ... [Williams] has influenced an entire generation of computer users in the areas of design, typography, desktop publishing, the World Wide Web, and the Macintosh."[3]


Williams grew up in San Jose and Fremont, California and graduated from Washington High School in Fremont. She later attended Ohlone College, then moved to Santa Rosa, California, and attended, then taught graphic design and typography at, Santa Rosa Junior College.[4] In 2011, she received an MA degree from Brunel University, London, in Shakespeare Authorship studies, and in 2014 she completed a doctoral dissertation for the same university; her doctorate is on the history (and future) of reading Shakespeare—out loud and in community, with an emphasis on editorial practice.

Robin is a graphic designer, typographer, author, college instructor, and lecturer. She has been a leader in the New Mexico Internet Professionals Association and the Santa Fe Mac Users Group.[5][6] She is a founder of the Mary Sidney Society[7] and the International Shakespeare Center Santa Fe.[8]

She is a single mother of three grown children and lives with graphic designer and co-author John Tollett;[9] John has one child.[4]


She has written, designed, indexed, and produced more than seventy computer-related books,[2] translated into twenty-three languages.[citation needed]

Williams has spent years studying William Shakespeare,[10] and in 2006 issued her book Sweet Swan of Avon: Did a Woman Write Shakespeare? in which she proposed the writer Mary Sidney as a candidate in the Shakespearean authorship question. She also teaches Shakespeare and leads the Shakespeare Close Readers reading and discussion groups about individual plays.[11]

Of Williams' research, her mentor,[4] Cynthia Lee Katona, professor of Shakespeare and Women's Studies at Ohlone College, has said[citation needed]

The first question I am asked by curious freshmen in my Shakespeare course is always, "Who wrote these plays anyway?" Now, because of Robin Williams' rigorous scholarship and artful sleuthing, Mary Sidney Herbert will forever have to be mentioned as a possible author of the Shakespeare canon. The real beauty of Sweet Swan of Avon is not, however, primarily academic; this book reminds of us a day when scholarship was fun, and important and original books were written for curious readers everywhere.

Williams is a co-founder of the International Shakespeare Center Santa Fe[12] and now devotes her time to introducing Shakespeare to adults through reading groups,, and other activities of the ISC.



Williams is creating a line of Shakespeare plays called the Readers' Editions, edited and designed specifically for reading aloud in a Shakespeare reading group,[13] published by ISC Press, Santa Fe, NM.

Williams has written over 70 books,[3] published by Peachpit Press, Berkeley, CA.

Titles by Williams, Robin (writing alone under that name, except as noted).

  • The Non-Designer's Presentation Book
  • Little Mac Book, Leopard Edition, The
  • Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard: Peachpit Learning Series, Adobe ReaderDownload
  • Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard: Peachpit Learning Series
  • Non-Designer's Design and Type Books, Deluxe Edition, The
  • Non-Designer's Collection, The
  • Non-Designer's Type Book, The, 2nd Edition
  • Little Mac Book, Tiger Edition, The
  • Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger: Peachpit Learning Series
  • Little Mac Book, The, Panther Edition
  • Robin Williams Mac OS X Book, The, Panther Edition
  • Non-Designer's Design Book, The, 2nd Edition
  • Mac is not a typewriter, The, 2nd Edition
  • Robin Williams Mac OS X Book, The, Jaguar Edition, 2nd Edition
  • Little Mac OS X Book, The
  • Little Mac Book, The, 7th Edition
  • How to Boss Your Fonts Around, 2nd Edition
  • Mac is not a typewriter, The
  • Writing as Williams, Robin P. (2006): Sweet Swan of Avon: Did a Woman Write Shakespeare? (Imprint: Wilton Circle Press)

Titles by Williams, Robin, writing with Tollett, John (and, as noted, others).

  • Robin Williams Cool Mac Apps: A guide to iLife 08, .Mac, and more
  • Robin Williams Design Workshop, Second Edition, Adobe Reader, 2nd EditionDownload
  • Podcasting and Blogging with GarageBand and iWeb eBookDownload
  • Podcasting and Blogging with GarageBand and iWeb
  • Robin Williams Design Workshop, 2nd Edition
  • Macs on the Go, Adobe ReaderDownload
  • Macs on the Go
  • Non-Designer's Web Book, The, 3rd Edition
  • Robin Williams Cool Mac Apps, Second Edition: A guide to iLife 05, .Mac, and more, 2nd Edition
  • Robin Williams Cool Mac Apps: A guide to iLife,, and more
  • Little Mac iApps Book, The
  • Little iMac Book, The, 3rd Edition
  • With both Tollett and Rohr, Dave. Robin Williams Web Design Workshop
  • Robin Williams Design Workshop
  • Non-Designer's Web Book, The, 2nd Edition

With Cohen, Sandee.

  • Non-Designer's Scan and Print Book, The


  • Robin Williams’s Guide to the Most Overlooked New Leopard Features
  • How to use the Dock
  • Designer's Toolbox: DVD hardware and software overview
  • iMovie
  • Introduction to Mac OS X
  • Build A Better Business Card
  • Little Mac iApps Tips
  • iPhoto: Organize and Share Your Digital Photos
  • Opening Apps & Docs in OS X
  • Finding Your Way Around OS X
  • Navigation Design
  • Project: Logos
  • Applying Your Identity
  • Identity Template Files
  • Tips on Designing Newsletters
  • Tips on Designing Web Pages
  • Peachpit TV (Audio Podcast): Interview with Robin Williams


  1. ^ Williams, Robin P. Sweet Swan of Avon: Did a Woman Write Shakespeare?. USA: Wilton Circle Press; 2006. ISBN 978-0-321-42640-6
  2. ^ a b "Robin Williams". Peachpit Press. 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-16.
  3. ^ a b Williams, Robin. The Mac is Not a Typewriter. 2nd Edition. 2003. Peachpit Press; California. ISBN 0-201-78263-4. Back Cover.
  4. ^ a b c "Robin Williams" (access "Real Bio" via the link it anchors; no date). Retrieved on January 22, 2008.
  5. ^ "Santa Fe Mac Users Group". SFMUG. 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-16.
  6. ^ "SFMUG". Robin Williams. 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-16.
  7. ^ "The Mary Sidney Society". 2006. Retrieved 2007-12-16.
  8. ^ "International Shakespeare Center Santa Fe". 2015. Retrieved 2017-12-24.
  9. ^ "John Tollett". Url's Internet Cafe. Retrieved 2014-10-01.
  10. ^ "The Author". Mary Sidney Society. 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-16.
  11. ^ "Close Readers". 2017. Retrieved 2017-12-24.
  12. ^ "International Shakespeare Center". 2017. Retrieved 2017-12-24.
  13. ^

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