America Online\'s new beta version of its popular messaging utility, AOL IM 4.0.989, now supports display of stocks by either the symbol or the full name and also supports a variety of international stock symbols and indices (in addition to the previously available U.S. symbols and indices).
Casady & Greene\'s maintenance release to its $50 grammar checker, Grammarian v2.1.1, addresses minor problems recognizing older Grammarian 2 files and now works properly with Adobe\'s ATM and PageMaker 6.5 and Microsoft\'s Outlook Express (under Mac OS 8.5).
Software Perspectives will begin shipping its new digitally remastered Brazil Pro 3.0 environment for its Relax environment simulator in late May. The $5 program provides full stereo, 32 kHz, 16-bit sound playback. The update eliminates the slight hiss present in the older versions.
Nick Macri e-mailed us about dLoo\'s imminent release of The Blue Box Developers Kit, which converts open-source, Linux-based applications to run on Windows or Macintosh. It will include source control, C/C++, PERL, Python and Java and will have the native look and feel of Windows, Mac OS, Gnome and KDE. The download will be free in late May.
Apple has released the English- North American version of ColorSync 3.0.1 on its software updates page. ColorSync helps applications maintain consistent color between different devices like monitors, printers, scanners and cameras. The update includes new versions of the ColorSync control panel, Extension, Default Calibrator, Profile First Aid and the profiles.
Stating that the crime didn\'t fit the punishment, Microsoft today presented its own compromise to end the antitrust battle.
iREZ has posted 1.01b22 drivers for the Kritter USB camera. The new version fixes several issue, including a recording length limitation when using version 1.0.
The TWAIN Working Group has had nearly 3,000 developers download the TWAIN Toolkit for the Mac, the new version of the industry standard for image acquisition, since its release in February. The standard enables Macintosh application developers to acquire images from digital cameras and scanners for use in their imaging applications. The new version is fully compatible with previous TWAIN specifications and existing data sources.
Aestiva, makers of the $800 HTML/OS, has introduced a new scaling technology, called "server jumping," which enables dynamic sites to span multiple computers to support users in the same way "static" sites do. Web applications can operate across multiple servers with no programming required, eliminating the need for CORBA, DCOM and other distributed-computing technologies. The technology can be deployed on Macintosh, Windows or UNIX.
Belkin Components has introduced and is currently shipping three new USB products designed for the portable-computing market: the USB PS/2 Adapter, featuring two PS/2 ports; the DockStation, with four USB ports, two PS/2 ports for keyboards and one serial port for modems and digital cameras; and the USB Pocket Hub, with four USB ports and built-in cable-management system. The PS/2 Adapter is $50, the DockStation is $160 and the Pocket Hub is $70.
Joliet Volume Access 1.0 is a freeware replacement for Apple\'s ISO 9660 File Access extension, offering support for Internet Config\'s file mappings as well browsing and Sherlock searching improvements on disks that use the ISO 9660 Level 3 or Joliet formats. (The download also contains a contextual menu and control strip utility for enabling and switching among UDF/ISO/Joilet formats.)
MacMAME 0.37b2, a beta of the arcade game emulator, has been released recently.
ZDNet News is reporting that a full beta version of Mac OS X may be available for attendees at the Worldwide Developers\' Conference next week. "Sources say Apple\'s next prerelease will offer more-traditional Mac OS tweaks, printer support and enhanced multiprocessor performance." In related news, the conference\'s Developer Central, the developer showcase co-sponsored by Apple Developer Connection and MacTech Magazine, is sold out.
Josh Rafofsky noticed that Steve Levy, a long-time Apple fan and writer for Newsweek, writes in the May 15 edition about his recent crisis of confidence in Apple. Levy, in the end, is born again into the Think Different faithful. (Rafofsky also notes that there is a Mac/PC hybrid version of Lego MindStorms available; "it\'s just hard to find and $75 more." )
Discussions in today\'s forums area include questions about OnGuard 3.3.1, project-management software, video editing on an iMac, an electronic design part, a "public" AirPort network and turning off AutoComplete in Netscape; and problems with Outlook Express 5 crashing, page layout with Internet Explorer 5, installation of Internet Explorer 5, an ISP (not connectivity), alignment on an Epson 900 and a Pismo keyboard that doesn\'t work after sleep.
Computer games publisher Infogrames has signed an exclusive publishing and distribution deal for several games in Epic Games\' Unreal franchise. Infogrames will have all worldwide PC, Macintosh and video game console rights to Unreal Tournament, Unreal 2 (in development) and an option to publish Unreal 3.
Quadmation has announced an inventory special sale on Q-Fire Pocket Baby external FireWire hard disk drives with 10 GB capacity and in graphite/ice color. The drives are on sale for $400 instead of the regular $500.
Following its pledge to ban any user who is identified as infringing upon copyrights, Napster late last night banned 317,377 of its roughly 9 million users from accessing the service. One should note, however, that none of the users on the list, which was compiled by Metallica, are Mac users. No Mac-compatible version of the Napster client supports sharing a user\'s files; they only support downloading files from other users.
FileMaker has posted Web Companion Update 5.0v4, a fix for the security issues that were discovered early last week.
MacDeals! bargains today include an exclusive deal on a G4/450 & 17\" Studio Display bundle, an internal SCSI Jaz 2 GB drive for $119, a free $100 gift certificate at Amazon.com for qualified students, a 5% discount at Egghead.com, and more.
Mac OS Manager 1.6.3 is a bug-fix relesae of the $5 utility that allows users to enable and disable Contextual Menu Items, Control Strip Modules, and Fonts in a similar fashion to the Extensions Manager.
Alco Blom and Rene Laterveer have released the final versions of WebConfidential 2.0 for Mac and Web Confidential 1.0 for Palm. The $20 applications are designed to manage and securely encrypt login/passwords, credits cards, and serial numbers and offer the exclusive ability to be synced together using a Macintosh Conduit and Palm\'s HotSync software.
UMAX recently began shipping the PowerLook 1100 and PowerLook 2100XL professional-caliber scanners. The PowerLook 1100 offers native FireWire connectivity for improved performance, 3.4Dmax with a 1200x2400 dpi optical resolution; while the PowerLook 2100XL can accommodate documents up to 12\"x17\" and features 3.4Dmax with an optical resolution of up to 800x1600 dpi. Three different software bundles are available for each scanner that dictate the product\'s pricing, starting at $999.
GraphicConverter 3.8.2 adds the ability to swap colors via AppleScript, an option for disabling the new zoom effects, and fixes a few bugs in the shareware graphics manipulation utility.
MacDesktops has eight new pictures this week including movies, flowers, a BMW and Boba Fett.
Bill Barker of financial site Fool.com has written an article that recommends Apple as a \"stock for Mom.\" He cites strong Q2 results, continued demand across all products lines, an excellent balance sheet, and a low price/earnings ratio as the stock\'s highlights.
Other World Computing has launched an online Build To Order system for legacy Power Macs. Users choose from a Power Mac 6100, Power Mac 7100, PowerCenter, or UMAX S900 and can then configure processor, RAM, drives, PCI cards (where applicable), video options, and OS.
LuraTech now offers a Java-SDK and a sample Java applet created from the SDK to allow viewing of LuraWave images using Java. The LuraWave Java-SDK makes it possible to display LuraWave images without having to download or install any additional software and plug-ins.
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