Following Excite@home\'s threat that it would file suit against Pacific Bell if the company failed to remove its humorous anti-cable modem television ads, Pacific Bell has added a brief disclaimer to the ads that more specifically describe the differences between DSL and cable modems. Excite@home doesn\'t feel that is enough.
Popular Web portal AltaVista has taken the wraps off its new Raging Search search engine, which it hopes will lure users away from the increasingly popular Google. Like Google, Raging Search features a clean interface with no banner ads, although small text ads do appear at the bottom of the search results page. In MacNN\'s brief testing we found that Google remains the superior search engine, returning more accurate results faster.
Following RealNetworks\' acquisition of Xing Technology and the announcement yesterday that AudioCatalyst 2.1 would be the last Mac-compatible version, Proteron is offering users of AudioCatalyst a competitive upgrade to the company\'s N2MP3 encoding software for $25, a $10 savings off the regular price. Popular Web portal AltaVista has taken the wraps off its new Raging Search search engine, which it hopes will lure users away from the increasingly popular Google. Like Google, Raging Search features a clean interface with no banner ads, although small text ads do appear at the bottom of the search results page. In MacNN\'s brief testing we found that Google remains the superior search engine, returning more accurate results faster.
SmartDisk Corp. has acquired Impleo, a digital-data transfer and storage company based in England that sells products under the Datawise brand. The acquisition allows SmartDisk to begin distribution of its digital connectivity products and personal storage systems in Europe. SmartDisk recently acquired VST Technologies, and its products will now also be available throughout Europe from Impleo.
The University of California, Riverside\'s California Museum of Photography boasts nearly a half-million visual assets. The museum is using a Macintosh-based computer system to" organize and archive the extensive collections and make them available to the outside world." Additionally, the interns and students working on the project are learning all about desktop movie and Web site production.
Acutabove Software has released FinalChapter, a $10 shareware application for creating and editing chapter tracks in QuickTime movies.
Tom Moore noticed an article in the New York Times by Peter H. Lewis about the Microsoft breakup and how it doesn\'t really matter to anyone -- except Macintosh users -- what operating system he is running under. (free registration required) "I suspect that most people do not care whether their Internet access devices are powered by Windows, Linux, BeOS, America Online, Sprint, DoCoMo, Palm OS, Java, Odwalla juice or hamsters on a treadmill. Macintosh users are a special case. They care passionately about the Mac OS and would rewire their own bodies to run on Mac OS X if such a thing were possible. But for most other people, the operating system is about as significant in their daily lives as the plumbing system."
Cybex Computer Products Corp. has introduced DS1800, a digital KVM switching product that provides administrators complete access to an unlimited number of servers or devices in their network from any location. It eliminates the need for special interconnections and hardware.
Joshua Rafofsky noticed that Handspring\'s Visor v2.6, which replaces its earlier version 2.1h, works well with Mac OS 9.0.4. He found that this update "works perfectly with Palms as well." "The sole upgrade note was that it addresses compatibility issues with OS 9.0.4." PalmPilot\'s version 2.5 is not compatible; HotSyncing is not possible. (Note, howeer, that Visor requires a serial number for the download.)
Today\'s Forums discussions include questions about with what paint to use to customize iMac case, an Ethernet network and building an MP3 player for a car; and problems with IE/OE always doing a first-run install, Wallstreet PowerBook and audio, an iMac that crashes after installing a Brother printer, a Canon BJC3000 that doesn\'t recognize a cartridge, Quark that won\'t print fonts correctly and an illegal request error in Toast.
Addonics Technologies has introduced Mobile UltraFloppy, a disk drive that reads/writes 1.44 and 144 MB disks and supports interfaces for PCMCIA, USB and FireWire. It weighs 23 ounces and consumes less than 4.5 watts in Seek/Write/Read mode and less than 2.5 watts in Standby mode. The data-transfer rate is 1.16 MB/sec. The PCMCIA version is $110; the USB version, $120; and the FireWire, $160. The USB and PCMCIA models are available now, while the FireWire model will be available June 1.
Yesterday we covered FileMaker\'s response to the recently discovered security flaw as well as the release of Apple\'s QTSS 2.0 and 2.01 updates, Server Sentinel 1.0 monitoring software, and Microsoft\'s Outlook 8.2.2 for Macintosh.
Yamaha has introduced CRW8824, a line of 8x/8x/24x internal and external CD-RW. The internal IDE-based CRW8824E will be introduced in late May, while the internal CRW8824SZ has an Ultra SCSI interface and will be available in early June. Ultra SCSI and FireWire versions are due in late June. The software bundle includes Adaptec\'s Toast and Adobe\'s ActiveShare, PageMill and Photo Deluxe Business Edition. [pricing not available]
A devastating VBS.LoveLetter.A virus that infects PCs and disables mail servers has made its way to the US after crippling a number of organizations in Europe and Asia late last night. The virus, which sends itself to everyone in a recipients address book with the subject "ILOVEYOU," does not affect Mac users but can disable the mail servers that they use. MacNN has received reports that government agencies, including the Pentagon, have shut down a number of mail servers to avoid this virus and expect other companies and organizations to follow suit. Network Associates has posted an update to protect PC users from the virus.
Generator/MacOS, a Sega Genesis/Megadrive emulator for the Macintosh, has been updated to v0.15a. This version fixes a bug that prevented v0.15 from saving its preferences file in some situations. In addition, it adds stereo sound and improved frameskipping.
Terminal Reality has released Sky! Special Edition for the Mac, a free tool which adds improved sky, ground and weather visuals to Fly!. Also, for those who bought an early defective copy of FLY! 2K for the Mac, replacement CDs can be attained by calling the Gathering of Developers support team at (214) 303-1202. [MGL]
Sunil Punnoose, a loyal reader, has created a new Web site called FlightArrivals.com, an independent source of arrival/departure /delay and cancellation information for ll commercial airline flights across the United States and Canada. All information is updated every one to four minutes. The site is developed and maintained using Apple\'s WebObjects software on Mac OS X Server 1.2 on G3s and G4s. Soon, all the information will be available on Palm VII and on any Web-enabled cell phone or WAP device.
FinderPop 1.8.6 is a bug-fix update to the control panel that enhances the Contextual Menu feature in Mac OS 8 and 9.
Simon Jones, creator of the popular e-card service Mac Cards that was closed down by Apple last month, has launched a new e-card site called Simon\'s EyeCards. The site pays a humorous and functional homage to Jones\' original creation, who stated "There can be no such objections with this new site, unless [Apple] wants to object to the fact they did dull cards first." The site features photographs of grass growing, pavement, street signs, and more.
The shareholders of Diehl Graphsoft, makers of 2D/3D CAD software, VectorWorks, for Macintosh and Windows, have approved the merger plan with Nemetschek AG for $9.50 per share in cash for all outstanding common stock. Diehl is no longer a separate public company, so its common shares will be delisted either May 5 or May 7 from Nasdaq. Nemetschek is one of the largest architectural software vendors in the world. [site not updated]
Belkin Components has recently introduced two OmniView KVM switches: a dual-access switch for training, and a USB switch. The $120 dual-access switch allows two users simultaneous, uninterrupted access of one computer from two sets of PS/2 keyboards, mice and monitors. Macintosh users must have a $160 adapter kit. The $250 USB switch offers cross-platform control of four USB computers and on-screen display capabilities on both PC and Macintosh. The switch also features a built-in, four-port hub. Both switches ship in June. [site not updated]
Katoemba Software has released Where\'s my window?, a $10 shareware system extension that enables you to bring any open window from any running application immediately to the foreground. After installation, it adds a menu to the control strip, which will show all windows from all running applications, and activates a window after it is chosen from this menu.
Apple today released the English-North American GameSprockets 1.7.4, a set of software libraries that most games and USB input devices require for optimum performance. The update includes nearly all the HID-compliant USB input devices, improves multiple monitor performance, adds higher quality 3-D sound filtering and delivers improvement for graphic-intensive games. [download 827K]
REALbasic 2.1.1 a maintenance update to its object-oriented BASIC, and visual development environment for Macintosh, adding a variety of Win32 routines and programming calls.
Newer Technology today announced a $50 price reduction on its iMAXpowr G3 CPU upgrade for 233-333MHz iMacs (rev. A-D), offering its 466 MHz/1 MB upgrade for $450. The company, however, also reduced the $200 rebate on exchanged processors to $150, but extended the required turnaround time from 5 days to 14 days.
Epson\'s Stylus Color 800 v5.6AE adds Mac USB support for Mac OS 8 and Mac OS 9 systems, according to the Web page.
A recent commercial on Ad Critic, titled as an Apple spot dubbed \'Espionage,\' is not an authentic Apple advertisement, and it was not the creators\' intention to confuse or trick viewers. MacNN spoke to the two men who produced the spot and who are using the love of Mac to hopefully further their careers.
iMac2Day notes the first mass-charging station for iBooks, which can charge up to 16 at a time and should work with any laptop; as well as a warning on advertised 27.5 GB FireWire hard drives that are actually 20 GB.
Now AAPL Stock: 93.4 ( -2.7 )
WhatsApp now handles over 100M calls daily
WhatsApp is celebrating that it is being used for over 100 million calls every day. In a brief notice, the Facebook-owned messaging platform advises the voice-calling feature it rolled out to its users last year now deals with an average of over 1,100 calls initiated per second. Earlier this year, it increased the security of its calls and other messages, by introducing end-to-end encryption on all platforms. http://bit.ly/292HqCX
Adele's '25' album now streaming
Recording artist Adele has "pulled a Kanye" after saying that her current album "25" would not be available for streaming. The seven-month-old record, which has yielded a number of hit singles, is now available for streaming on all the major streaming services, such as Apple Music and Spotify, as of today in most major markets, with worldwide distribution to come. Reportedly, the singer had demanded streaming be limited to paid subscribers -- a condition that has hurt some streamers with artists, who aren't paid royalties for free or trial listens . Apple pays performers its normal royalty rates during its free trial, avoiding the issue -- and having repeated success in both signing up exclusives and placing those exclusives into the top of the charts. http://ti.me/28U7NOu
SanDisk iXpand case has battery, storage
A new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s case from SanDisk appears to be the "holy grail" of accessories: a stylish and protective case that offers both extra storage as well as the option of extra battery power as well. The iXpand Memory case offers either 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB of additional storage incorporated into the case, and an optional add-on battery pack (sold separately) adds up to an extra day or more of charge. Through the associated iXpand app, camera photos and videos can be automatically stored on the extra storage, optionally password-protected, The cost for the case is (in order of storage capacity) $60, $100, and $130. The battery pack's release data has not yet been announced, but the add-on should retail for an additional $30. http://bit.ly/291epHu
Fifth Hong Kong store to open June 30
The 46th official Apple store in what the company calls the "Greater China" region will open at 10AM local time in Hong Kong's New Town Plaza in the Sha Tin district on Thursday, June 30, according to a new page on Apple's retail website. Despite slowing growth due to economic turmoil in China, the country is still Apple's fastest-growing market. The new story will be the fifth for Hong Kong, a lucrative market for Apple thanks to the high concentration of wealth there and a thriving "gray" market. Normal store hours for the new store will be 10AM to 10PM every day. http://apple.co/291diaT
Apple Music bug bites very short songs
There appears to be a reproducible bug in the current version of iTunes -- version 12.4.1, running on OS X 10.11.5, both the current non-beta versions of the respective software -- that causes a streamed song to become "stuck" in endless buffering if the streamed item just before this happened was 60 seconds or less in length. The problem appears to stem from code in iTunes that signals the next track to start downloading one minute before the currently-playing track is done, and thus songs shorter than one minute don't trigger the download. Locally-stored music is unaffected by the bug, and the problem does not appear to exist in either the macOS Sierra developer beta or versions of iTunes earlier than 12.4, and does not affect the iOS Music app at all. http://bit.ly/291cN0l
Walmart Pay expands to 15 states
Walmart, one of the key progenitors of the failed CurrentC mobile payment system that was distinguished from Apple Pay by its ability to collect and share customer financial and buying data among its participants, has expanded the soft rollout of its alternative solution "Walmart Pay" to an additional 15 US states following a pilot program in Arkansas and Texas last month. Walmart continues to resist adding Apple Pay. The system, built into the Walmart app for iOS and Android, works with a complicated system of the camera scanning a purchase code at the register, then generating a QR code which is then scanned by the register. The system is available now in Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington, DC. http://apple.co/28SqZfu
Amazon refreshes entry-level Kindle
Amazon has added a new Kindle to its ebook reader range, one that is thinner and lighter than the previous entry-level model. Offering a six-inch 167-dpi touchscreen display, a doubled 4GB of storage, and an option for a white casing, the new model also adds in the ability to export highlights and notes to an email account as a PDF. Two versions of the all-new Kindle are available, priced at $80 including "Special Offers" and $100 without. http://amzn.to/28Q4c3R