Gerry\'s ICQ d43.2 fixes a problem during the login process in the freeware alternative Mirabilis ICQ chat client.
Netopia has released netOctopus 3.6, which now includes historical analysis for Macs and PCs to the management application for remote software installation, system configuration, and inventory management. Version 3.6 also integrates its Microsoft Windows 2000 Readiness Analyzer.
Automated Solutions has released QuickCode Pro 4.0, a new version of the $200 4th Dimension utility for simplifying and accelerating 4D code development.
VST has made available online version 1.0 of the drivers for its unique Tri Media external drive, which can read floppy disks, compact flash, and smart media. The $190 USB device began shipping late last month.
SETI Checker 2.2.1 is a bug-fix update to the utility for checking and comparing SETI@home statistics. (Readers are encouraged to join Team MacNN\'s SETI@home effort.)
MetaCreations yesterday reported a net loss for the quarter of $3.3 million. More importantly, however, was the SEC filing revealed that the company has sold Headline Studio, the last product in MetaCreations\' once industry-leading graphics lineup whose future up until now was uncertain. The product was sold to Fractal.com, a startup company that former MetaCreations executive and Painter creator Mark Zimmer, along with two other colleagues, founded. Ironically, Zimmer and his colleagues had been executives at Fractal Design, a competing company that merged with MetaTools in 1997 to create MetaCreations. Fractal.com has yet to announced its plan for the product or the company as a whole.
Bruce Johnson noticed that Strata 3D 3.0, a new version of the 3-D modeling and rendering software that was used to make the game Myst, has been released in a free downloadable version.
Canto has introduced Cumulus 5 - Enterprise Edition, which is designed to manage and archive all kinds of digital assets across platforms. The company introduced previously the Single-User and Workgroup editions. Features of the Enterprise Edition include automatic detection of usage and cross-reference of assets; Live Filtering, for determining the exact categories and records a specific user needs to access; and Internet Client, which allows for accessing and altering record and category field information. This edition will be broadly available in the third quarter. The starter kit with the server application and 20 concurrent client licenses is priced at $33,000.
PGP Security today introduced PGP Desktop Security 7.0, a new version of its security suite that offers new personal firewall, intrusion detection, and dynamic peer-to-peer virtual private networks as well as disk/e-mail encryption capabilities, among other features. A Mac beta version will be available mid-May, while the full version is due by the third quarter of this year. A stand-alone version of the product, called PGP Data Security Suite, is expected in late June. Pricing is $36 per node for 500 nodes.
Waves in Motion has released Script Scheduler 2.0, an $80 plug-in which makes controlling and launching scripts within FileMaker Pro databases more powerful. It can trigger any script in any file, any script on a specific day of the week and any script at scheduled intervals. Script Scheduler Deluxe, which adds Azium String Functions, costs $90.
CE Software has posted QuicKeys 5.0b4, the latest beta of the next version of the company\'s macro utility. Among the new features in QuicKeys 5.0 are speech triggers, Mac OS 9 compatibility, several toolbar options, long shortcut names, and an improved Type Text plug-in.
NewTek has begun shipping LightWave  for Macintosh. The significant upgdate to the $2,500 3-D animation software offers advanced character animation tools, a new modeling paradigm and a new architecture. It also incorporates Open GL technologies, Altivec tuning, QuickTime support and OS X compliance. Registered uses of version 5.6 can purchase the update for $500.
The San Francisco Chronicle\'s Henry Norr has written a complimentary article about his wireless home driven by Apple\'s AirPort.
icons@Mendelini has three new sets of icons: Liquid Buttons, Liquid Folders and Bowie Buttons. These sets are all available in standard Mac OS format and IconDropper packs.
According to the Japan Electronic Industry Development Association, Japan\'s PC shipments exceeded its TV shipments. There were 9.94 million PCs shipped during fiscal 1999, a 32 percent jump, and exceeded shipments of TVs for the first time. TV shipments totaled 9.76 million units.
Total Recall Software has released Heat FireWire Utilities, a combination utility for FireWire hard drives that can partition, format, defrag, optimize, and verify FireWire media. The software also boasts the ability to increase drive performance by up to 20 percent, a claim that readers verify as being accurate. A 14-day demo version is available for download.
QPS has recently introduced Que! Fire CD-RW drive with FireWire controller card and 8x4x32x speeds for all Macintosh and Windows computers. Available in mid-May, the $480 drive has three FireWire ports, comes bundled with CD-mastering software, CD-RW media, one FireWire, a protective carrying bag, and all necessary accessories.
FreeGuard 1.1 is a simple security utility for making files or folders invisible. The application can itself can also be password-protected.
ACD Systems International has released a Macintosh beta version of ACDSee, its digital image-management software. The software is a high-speed image viewer that displays digital images in high-resolution and supports more than 40 image formats.
Apple.com was bumped from second place to third in PC Data list of most visited during the week ending May 6. Dell.com moved up to No. 1 with from last week\'s No. 3 spot while Compaq.com was last week\'s second-most visited hardware site. Since launching its new Web site in January, Apple has usually finished in the top spot.
MacNN has learned that Apple recently lost five key members of its audio division to a startup company that analyzes the technical aspects of a song to help people find other music they may like.
Media 100 Inc. has completed its merger with Digital Origin, a developer of application software for acquiring and editing digital video. Media 100 will now offer a tightly integrated streaming media application suite that addresses the entire streaming media production process from acquiring video to compressing and streaming. Under the terms of the merger agreement, Media 100 issued 0.5347 shares of common stock for each share of Digital Origin common stock. Media 100 will operate Digital Origin as a wholly owned subsidiary headquartered in Mountain View, Calif.
Michael P. McLaughlin has posted Regress+ 2.3.1, a minor update to the freeware title for mathematical modeling. The update adds Mac OS 9.0.4 compatibility and affects only the Save as PICT functionality.
Discussions in today\'s Forums area include questions about PM 8500 and iMovie and AppleScript and VBS; problems with reading multisession CDRs, an iBook that lags after startup, a desktop printer that crashes on setup, and SoundJam that crashes while ripping CDs.
Despite entering a crowded marketplace, Germany-based CPU upgrade manufacturer Metabox AG, which announced yesterday afternoon that it is entering the US market, believes it will succeed where many of its competitors have stumbled.
After making its consumer-oriented video editing software iMovie available for free download at the end of last month, Apple today announced that more than 150,000 copies had been downloaded during the first week. The software, which Apple says is for Power Mac G4 and FireWire PowerBook users, has proven to be compatible on a wide variety of systems, including Blue & White G3, beige G3, and 604-based machines.
Earthlink today announced that Sprint has purchased an additional 26 million shares of the company for $431 million ($16.58/share), increasing Sprint\'s stake in the company from 14.1 percent to 26.7 percent. In January, Apple announced a $200 million investment in Earthlink; since then, Earthlink\'s stock price has fallen nearly 50 percent.
Apple\'s TIL on how to reduce DVD skipping and stuttering outlines dual-layered DVD discs, DHCP servers, color bit depth, Appearance Sounds and Speakable Items as potential sources for causing distorted playback.
Recent PowerBook-related TILs discuss operating with the clamshell closed (bronze and FireWire), a steady LED glow at startup (bronze), and how to determine if a DVD decoder is present on a bronze PowerBook.
MonkeyBar 1.2, formerly known as iBar, is a $15 \"Internet-savvy launcher that combines applications, documents, favorites, bookmarks and music in one simple floating window.\" The new versions adds a couple small features and fixes a handful of bugs.
Marty Pfeiffer has posted Nu Sans Monospaced 2.0, a new version of his $8 Epsy Sans-like font optimized for on-screen display. The new version adds an italic face loosely based on IBM\'s Script typeface for Selectric typewriters and also adds the Euro symbol to both fonts.
Hint Movie CMPlugin 1.02 fixes a few bugs and adds new documentation to the contextual menu plugin that helps prepare QuickTime media for internet streaming.
Weather Grok 1.3 is a free application that reports current weather conditions from NOAA for hundreds of locations worldwide. The update fixes a handful of small bugs.
The Macintosh DivX Resource is looking for programmers to help port DivX to the Mac. DivX, not to be confused with the defunct DVD-rental technology DIVX, is \"a very new video compression codec built around Microsoft\'s MPEG-4 video codec and the MP3 audio codec. It is not only extremely efficient (10:1 compression from a native MPEG-2 DVD stream) but the quality is nothing short of astounding.\" Currently DivX is only available for Windows. The site plans on giving away $5000 and an iMac DV SE to encourage development.
Inspired Logic, LLC has released CD Caterpillar 8.0, an application designed to help beginning readers strengthen their reading skills that emphasizes actual reading by the student. The stories featured in Version 8.0 include the entire text of The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling, The Three Little Pigs, The Little Field Mouse, The Little Jackal, Nursery Rhymes and other short stories. The Home Version costs $16, the Classroom Version costs $80.
Yesterday we reported that Connectix will be releasing a utility similar to SpeedDoubler with Mac OS 9 compatibility, Macromedia\'s Dreamweaver UltraDev, noted Steve Jobs as appointment as Man of the Week, and the release of Webshots Desktop Lite 1.0.1, Microsoft UAM 5.05, and Z-Write 1.0.
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