Corel Corp. is offering a beta version of Corel Painter 6.1b Natural-Media creation tool. The update, soon to be final and free to 6.0 users, improves the soften, sharpen and highpass features; and adds a new woodcut effect.
Met@box announced it is offering a Holiday Rebate on its new MetaDrive Express Firewire line of portable harddrives and joeCARD processor upgrades. Its new FireWire drives available in 10GB, 20GB and 30GB formats for $430, $570, and $900 after rebates of between $30 and $80.
Apple has posted the Multicountry version of Apple Modem Updater 2.0. This updater supports the internal modem which came with the PowerBook G3 series, iMac, Power Macintosh G3 and Power Macintosh G4 computers. The bundle contains new modem firmware for the internal 56K modem, updated AT command set and Modem Country Selector (English-International version only).
Apple has posted the English-International version of Mac OS Runtime for Java 2.2.3. The update is Oracle Certified, provides substantial performance improvements and incorporates numerous bug fixes.
FoldersSynchronizer 1.9.6 is a maintenance update to the $20 Mac utility for synchronizing or backing up folders.
Microsoft is offering $100 mail-in rebate on Office 2001 for the Macintosh when an iMac, iBook or PowerMac G4 Cube is purchased. To qualify, users must have purchased a qualifying Apple computer within 60 days of acquiring Office 2001.
We have posted a review of The Sims: Livin\' Large, the expansion pack to the phenomenally-successful strategy game The Sims.
Big Business officially announced Big Business 3.0 this week, after quietly updating customers for last several weeks. Version 3.0 of the business management solution with sales, purchasing, inventory, and accounting modules features a new database engine that offers faster searches and sorts, better stability and scalability, and new Print Preview options, custom forms, reporting tools, alerts, and reports. A demo CD with both single and multi-user versions is available.
Black Magik has released File Hider 1.0, a $20 shareware utility that allows you to quickly and easily "hide" selected files and folders on your Macintosh so that they cannot be seen by casual observers or users of your Mac.
games.macnn.com has posted an article profiling the Computer Golfers Association (CGA), a group of Mac users that have been playing Links online since 1994.
Eric Hyman\'s MacBibble 1.2 is an update to the 16-bit JPEG, .nef, and EXIF file reader, manipulator, browser, and corrector with ICC support. It adds new instant previews in the browser window and the ability to specify JPEG quality and TIFF dpi as well as fixes several bugs. A demo of the $100 shareware has been extended for previous users.
Interesting threads in our forums include: using an iBook or PowerBook for MIDI, Mac-compatible free internet services, hard drive recommendations for a G4 tower, how to create self-mounting disk images, offering each user their own appearance setting under Multiple Users, AirPort health concerns, recording directly to a CD-R, using iMovie with multiple monitors, and converting Real files to QuickTime.
Pacific Tech\'s popular Graphing Calculator 3.0 brings the ability to add text comments to documents, printing, an export to Web feature for creating HTML files and PNG images, and the ability to save in RTF format for export to word processors. Upgrades from v2.7 are $20 and $40 from v2.0, v2.1, and v2.2. A demo of the $60 application is available online.
Sand Hill Engineering has released XTension 3.2.3, an update to its Mac-only home automation software that adds support for the LynX-Port and more verbs for the X-10 Extended Code suite for controlling the new \'smart\' devices. XTension is available in a free Lite version which incorporates all of the features of the full version, with only a limitation on the number of database units.
GrabPac today announced a new line of carrying cases for iMac and iBook, which have been "redesigned from the ground up with a host of new features and colors including a perfect Key Lime." The new $50 GrabPac for iBook is available in black, indigo, and key lime, while the Pro model for the iMac ($80) and iBook ($60) are available in simulated tan or black leather. The GrabPac Classic is still available at new, lower price of $40.
Chaotic Software\'s QuickMovie 1.2, a $20 utility that transforms a series of images into a single QuickTime movie easier than ever using MacOS 8, 9 or X, adds the ability to resize the main window, scale images, and other enhancements.
Belkin has introduced the CD LaunchPad, a $25 CD labeling system targeted at consumers. Users can create both labels for CDs as well as jewel cases. The CD LaunchPad will ship in January 2001.
Thomas Tempelmann has posted two Ricochet modem scripts for use with the company\'s original 28.8Kbps wireless modem, and new 128Kbps model. The scripts contain improved functionality over Apple\'s own.
Today\'s DealNN bargains include: Power Mac G4/500 MP systems for $2000, reconditioned iMac Rev/D (333 MHz) units for $600, 64 MB of PC100 RAM for $22, an NEC 19\" flat screen monitor with USB hub for $360, UMAX\'s Astra 2010U USB scanner for $15, and several DVDs for under $10.
Apple debuted a new television ad yesterday titled Internet Gift. The 30-second spot features Jeff Goldblum, who discusses the merits of \"giving the Internet\" this holiday, and with it an iMac.
Nisus Software is offering Nisus Email for $20a savings of $10 off the regular priceduring the Thanksgiving weekend. Nisus Email allows for e-mail composition in word-processing applications and allows users to send e-mails from within other applications.
During the past week, MacDesktops has posted 14 new pictures, including Audrey Hepburn (portraits), Chicken Run (animation), Disproportionate (starscapes) and Dragonheart (movies). The site is updated daily.
Yesterday we noted Apple\'s possible retail presence in Chicago and posted review of the Voodoo4 4500 PCI. Other updates included Adobe\'s Illustrator 9.01 Update, Aladdin\'s InstallerMaker 7.0, Power On\'s Rewind 1.0, and 3dfx\'s Mac drivers v1.1.2 as well as FirewireDirect\'s SlimLine DX line of external 3.5" FireWire drives and Popular Science\'s Best of What\'s New 2000 area.
Automated Solutions has released FileToolkit 3.0.2, a 4th Dimension plug-in which provides a variety of enhanced and optimized document management and network operation routines, including over 100 new commands to the 4D language. A limited demo of $160 plug-in is available online.
CalcIT v1.1 is a $11, customizable, shareware calculator that offers scientific and memory functions as well as hex or binary modes as well as conversions between metric and English units of length, mass/weight, and volume.
Morning tech news: The Illinois Institute of Technology has concluded that Carnivore, the FBI\'s controversial email monitoring system, \"does not provide protections... commensurate with the level of the risks\"; an IBM supercomputer is being installed in Hawaii to analyze \"space junk\" in the paths of U.S. satellites; and the latest European Microsoft antitrust case will be combined with an earlier case, according to a report issued by the European Commission.
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