isaBook 2.5 beta is a new Mac OS X version of the $15 shareware address-book which offers filter functions. The new betaalso brings a new print command for the contact list and other minor cosmetic improvements.
The Adrenaline Vault has posted three new screenshots from the Diablo II Expansion Set, now officially known as Diablo II: Lord of Destruction. (For more information, check out our first look at the Diablo II Expansion Set.)
Robert Truelove is developing a new web site geared towards Mac flight sim enthusiasts, Macflightsims.com. A preview page is currently up and the author is welcoming feedback, those interested in writing content for the site and any add-ons for Mac flight sims.
A reader at Accelerate Your Mac! notes that those people who applied for a rebate from the nearly defunct 3dfx Interactive and have yet to receive it can check the status of their rebate at TCA Fulfillment Service\'s web site.
We have further details regarding Apple\'s recent VAR meeting, where Apple CEO Steve Jobs\' use of profanities drew much attention.
LightWork Design Ltd. has officially released LightWorks 5.6, an update to its 3D rendering engine. Many applications that license the technology have already updated to the new version, which improves performance and adds various features.
Newsflood has posted a brief Q&A with Ritual Entertainment\'s Richard \"Levelord\" Gray. After completing Heavy Metal: FAKK2 last year, the company has been working on a currently unannounced title which Levelord provides a few more details on in the interview. \"...it is indeed a 1st-person shooter,\" says Levelord. \"It will have a male hero as the central figure. He\'s trying to realize himself in this new millenium, ...who he is, what is his purpuse in life, why does he have this strange curiousity about his room mate\'s still-moist bath towel, ...stuff like that. Oh yes, they [sic] will indeed be guns and health kits, too!\"
The National Institute on Media and The Family joined numerous U.S. senators in releasing a video and computer game report card today, according to CNN. The report found that only two retailers, FuncoLand and Target, consistently enforced policies prohibiting the sale of adult-rated games to minors. However, the report praised the industry itself for implementing many of the recommendations made by the watchdog group.
Evening tech news: Microsoft\'s web sites were down again today, less than 24 hours after the software maker said it had fixed a technical error that prevented millions of users from reaching its most popular online destinations; Prices of all 12.1-inch TFT LCDs, found in iBooks, will soon fall to record low levels, after larger TFT LCDs reached record lows in the second half of 2000; and Microsoft has released a new set of tools for Java programmers to preserve, enhance and migrate Java language projects onto the Microsoft .NET platform.\"
Keith Shaw found out that CorporateTime (formerly Netscape Calender), a network based calendar and scheduling software, will be available as a Mac OS X client this summer.
ilesa Software has released Download Deputy 4.1, a $30 utility for Internet download management that handles multiple files from different programs. This version adds a Link Extractor, URL Verifier and Contextual Menu Plug-in. The upgrade is $16 to registered users of version 3.x.
We have posted a report from last weekend\'s NAMM Show, geared towards audio professionals, with notes from Emagic, Steinberg, and Rocket Networks.
Media 100 today announced the immediate availability of its $1000 Cleaner MPEG SuperCharger, a PCI card for encoding MPEG-2 in Cleaner 5. Media 100 claims the card, which was originally expected late last year, improves performance by up to 10x versus software encoding. (See our Cleaner 5 review posted yesterday.)
Richard Bannister has released Audio Overload 1.0, a game music player for the Mac. Formerly known as BNSF/MacOS, the program now supports .nsf (NES) tracks, .spc (Super Nintendo) tracks and .gym (Genesis/Megadrive) logs. It includes support for play lists and transparent decompresion of .rar archives.
Apple has released the OpenGL 1.2 Software Development Kit (SDK) which supports all Apple OpenGL implementations up to and including Apple OpenGL 1.2.1. The SDK is also available as a segmented download or the core SDK containing documentation, headers, resources and link libraries only.
AUT World has posted three new in-game screenshots from the upcoming Action Unreal Tournament mod based on the popular Action mods for Quake 2 and Half-Life.
Voodoo Extreme has posted two new high-resolution screenshots from PopTop Software\'s upcoming building/strategy game for the Mac and PC, Tropico.
WarCraftIII.Net is accepting questions from readers for the next Fan Site chat scheduled for February 1st. The site will participate in the monthly chat with the WarCraft III development team and get questions answered on behalf of their readers.
LabCalc 1.1.2 is a free update to the $100 color matching utility that performs color conversions between profiles to \"determine exactly how to reproduce a colour on any device.\" The new version improves handling of 5-8 color profiles and allows users to select an NCP profile (named color Profile) for output.
Compositor 1.6 is a new version of the $20 shareware image-to-art application that offers over 125 filters and channel effects as well as the ability to save/replay actions. Version 1.6 brings fast anti-aliased image rotation, TIFF export, and several new filters.
IMG has posted a Q&A with ATI Technologies 3D Engineer Chris Bentley on the new drivers for the Radeon which are expected for release in the near future. According to Chris, the next major driver update will include support for Full Scene Anti-Aliasing support, Cube Mapping and Bump Mapping. In addition, tech demos will be made available to show off the card\'s advanced features.
Architosh has a follow-up on AIA\'s effort to product a Mac version of software for AIA electronic documents, which was first reported as coming to the Mac last September by Architosh.
games.macnn.com has information on Diablo II\'s sales numbers for 2000, the officially announced name and release date for the Diablo II Expansion Set and a contest to celebrate Blizzard Entertainment\'s 10th Anniversary. [updated]
Blizzard Entertainment has announced that Diablo II sold more than 2.75 million copies in 2000 despite being released in June. In addition, the company announced that the official name for the Diablo II Expansion Set is Diablo II: Lord of Destruction. The company also announced that the Mac version of the expansion set is now expected for release this summer.
Blizzard Entertainment is also celebrating its 10th anniversary with a contest which will give away 25 prize packages from February 1 to February 25 including one which allows the winner\'s name to be used as a magical item in Diablo II: Lord of Destruction and the Grand Prize of a trip to Irvine, CA to visit the offices of Blizzard Entertainment and nearby entertainment parks.
Vincent Jalby has posted FontBuddy 2.1.1, a minor update to his $20 font viewer that provides the keystrokes, ASCII, and Unicode equivalent for both installed an uninstalled fonts. It fixes compatibility issues with the Chicago system font and can now load individual font files (those outside of font suitcases). English, Japanese, and French versions are available.
GA-Source has posted an interview with Jack Wall, Music Director on the score for 3D adventure game Myst III: Exile, scheduled to be released on the Mac and PC on April 9. \"To hear music that you\'ve composed played back to you in this way by 51 masters of their craft is absolutely sublime in every way,\" says Wall. \"It was a tremendously satisfying experience to say the least.\"
Afternoon tech news: Miramax Pictures is experimenting with movies on demand over the Internet by making \"Guinevere\" film available for download in a pay-per-view scheme; Student lunch purchases using a fingerprint scanner are causing concern among privacy groups; and Swedish airline SAS will test a wireless Internet system that runs on-board aircraft.
Today\'s featured move at Gathering of Developer\'s official Oni web site is the Rising Fury, a spinning punch that can take down opponents on the way up or down. The web site will continue to feature a new move each day from the third-person 3D action game until the game\'s official launch on January 29. [flash 5 required]
Railroad Express will host a chat this Saturday, January 27th with PopTop Software, developer of the forthcoming building/strategy game for the Mac and PC, Tropico. The chat begins at 4 p.m. EST (1 p.m. PST) and will be hosted in a Java chat room.
id Software\'s Robert Duffy updated his .plan noting that the company will soon be releasing a new point release for Quake III: Arena which addresses bugs and issues with the retail version of Quake III: Team Arena and the 1.27 point release. Among the new additions is the ability for mod makers to use content from other mods and an easier way to incorporate the new interface into their mods. The programmer also gives his endorsement for Q3 Gridiron, a \"football with rocket launchers\" mod for Quake III: Arena. \"Q3GridIron ROCKS - We have been playing the heck out of this thing at the office. Hail Mary!\"
osx.macnn.com has news on plans of Carbon versions of QuarkXpress 5.0 and Steinberg\'s Nuendo as well as notes on Xircom drivers for OS X.
Steinberg last week demonstrated its Mac port of Nuendo, its high-end audio for video and interactive media, which will reportedly \"ship by the time OS X is released on March 24 and will be Carbon-compliant,\" according to a report from the show. (MacNN covered other Steinberg announcements at the show as well.)
Quark says it will support Mac OS X and that is already working on a Carbonized version of QuarkXPress that will be released after the non-Carbonized XPress 5.0 ships, according to Macworld UK.
Kevin Hayes, who contacted Xircom about Mac OS X drivers for its USB-to-serial adapters, notes that the company has no plans for OS X support, according to a note from the comapny: \"Unfortunately, we will not have any OS X drivers. The only way the device is going to work is through the Classic environment of OS X.\" Hayes has also contacted Keyspan about its PDA adapter, but so far, no response.
MOTU last week unveiled Digital Performer 3.0 (DP3), a major upgrade to its audio workstation and MIDI sequencer software. DP3 includes a redesigned user interface, surround production features for all current surround formats (including 10.2), a new Sequence Editor window for single-timeline editing of MIDI and audio, fifteen new plug-ins, and an enhanced QuickScribe notation engine. It is expected to ship during Q2, 2001 for $800 (with unspecified cross-grades and upgrade paths).
MOTU also introduced 828 FireWire audio interface. The single rack-space audio interface with 8 channels of ADAT optical digital input/output, 8 channels of balanced 24-bit analog input/output, mic pre-amps and an ADAT SYNC input for sample-accurate synchronization as well as an ASIO driver for compatibility with all major audio software. The $800 interface includes AudioDesk, an audio workstation software package for recording, editing, mixing, processing, and mastering of multitrack audio recordings.
Men and Mice have posted QuickDNS Pro 3.01, an update to its useful DNS utility that resolves several issues and has a few minor enhancements.
iTimer 2.6, an application for timing and regulating Internet use, now includes new support for Mac OS 9.1 as well as \"several under-the-hood improvements.\"
Macworld Conference & Expo Tokyo is scheduled for Feb. 22 to 24 in Nippon Convention Center. There are two conference tracks and expanded expo area with the popular pavilion areas, including Special Interest and Mac Tech Central. Online registration is available now. [site not updated]
Willow Design has developed a compact case for both the Apple 15-inch flat-panel display and the G4 Cube. The case, constructed of polyester and nylon fabric, weighs 7.9 pounds and is compartmentalized with half-inch foam throughout. The screen side features three sandwiched layers of plastic for added protection. Available in five colors, the case costs $220.
Mac product distributor Dr. Bott has launched an online store for resellers, which provides reseller access to products, current prices and product information. (Resellers can sign up online as well.)
LinuxPPC Inc. has announced plans to become a non-profit organization, which \"will focus on the development and promotion of the Linux operating system on the PowerPC processor.\" The company says it will also be better able to support the growth and development of the operating system, and that the transition, which would take several months, would not cause disruption in services.
Kent Sorenson\'s Snak 4.5.4 is a $20 full-featured IRC client that brings extensive AppleScript support, improves DCC sending and supports preferred connections.
Drexler Technology today announced it has been awarded a Japanese patent, effective through 2010, for reading/writing files on non-eraseable storage media that \"describes a method of achieving \'apparent erasability\' on recordable DVD or CD-R disks using OS-level commands. A similar patent was issued to Drexler in the in the US in 1991 (as well other countries). Apple, Adaptec, Compaq, Microsoft and most PC manufacturers were among the list of potential companies that would notified of the \"opportunity to purchase exclusive patent licenses for each of the seven countries and for each of the various PC operating systems.\" Utilizing the invention, nonerasable and rewriteable optical disk drive systems act as if they are instantly erasable like magnetic hard drives. This enables PC system features such as \'drive-letter access,\' \'packet writing\' of small files without wasted overhead, and the ability to drag-and-drop files and to randomly erase separate files.
Apple has posted a Technical Note in its Apple Developers Connection that discusses changes and corrections in Mac OS 9.1. \"For the most part, Mac OS 9.1 is a system update that fixes bugs and improves operational performance and stability.\"
AsyncKeys! 1.0 is a free utility that shows the exact keyboard reference number and its ASCII equivalent to a keystroke or key combination.
St. Clair Software has posted Screen Catcher 2.2, a new version of its $25 shareware screen-catcher shareware utility that adds support for Mac OS 9.1 and new file formats.
The Wall Street Journal has published a favorable review of Apple\'s PowerBook G4, comparing it to IBM\'s ThinkPad T. While impressed by the system as a whole, the PowerBook G4 was faulted for its lack of an expansion bay, mediocre keyboard, and AirPort support that WSJ found had less range than that of the iBook or the Thinkpad equipped with a PCMCIA card.
Morning tech news: the controversial UCITA software-publishers\' rights bill is on the legislative agenda in four states; after vehement denials yesterday, Sega says it\'s seriously considering halting the production of its game console and is talking with rivals Sony and Nintendo about supplying games for their machines; and Compaq says it expects sales growth in Europe to exceed the U.S. this year because \"Europe has not been hurt by the dot.com downturn.\"
Early morning tech news: the first beta of Athena, an operating system that runs on PCs and Macs, has been released; Microsoft is blaming its technicians for the outage of its Web sites yesterday; the Senate is considering a bill that would give broadband providers tax cuts for bringing service to rural communities; and SanDisk, makers of VST products, reported record revenues in its fourth quarter but fell short of expectations, sending shares down 20%.
We have published a review of Monopoly, the classic Hasbro Brothers board game brought to the Mac in full 3D.
Yesterday Creative Labs\' Brian Souder clarified his earlier statement on the addition of SoundBlaster Live! cards to the Apple Store, Blizzard Entertainment released a new movie featuring in-game footage of WarCraft III and Epic Interactive released a demo for Earth 2140, a futuristic real-time strategy game for the Mac. We published a review of Driver, the new driving game from MacSoft which features high speed police chases, spectacular crashes and the ability to create your own car chase scenes.
Yesterday we noted the release of QuickTime Streaming Server 3p2, Proxim\'s acquisition of Netopia, 4D\'s WebSTAR Server Suite Plug-in v4.3.3, Cisco\'s family of Aironet 350 devices (AirPort compatible), and Mac compatibility with MSNBC\'s high speed portal. Other updates include Make It So! Photoshop plugin, a review of Cleaner 5, and a few new iTunes reviews.
GameVisions will host a chat tonight with Human Head Studios, developer of third-person Viking action game Rune. The chat begins at 8:00 p.m. EST (5:00 p.m. PST) and will take place on irc.gamevisions.com:6667 (channel #gamevisions).
Bullseye Software has released SkyFighters 1945 1.02, a new version of its WWII era flight sim for the Mac and PC. Version 1.02 includes many cosmetic tweaks as well as many minor bug fixes and a few program enhancements. It also fixes a couple new bugs introduced in the 1.01 update.
An interview with Cornered Rat Software\'s Mark Pribe, Executive Producer on massively multiplayer war game World War II Online, has been posted at Daily Radar. \"Ultimately, if one side is simply doing better than the other and keeps doing so, whether because of numbers or any other factor, it\'s not unreasonable to expect them to win the war,\" says Pribe. \"This is not something that can happen quickly, but it can happen. When it does, we\'ll start the war over.\"
Now AAPL Stock: 93.96 ( + 0.37 )
Apple employees testing wheelchair features
New features included in the forthcoming watchOS 3 are being tested by Apple retail store employees, including a new activity-tracking feature that has been designed with wheelchair users in mind. The move is slightly unusual in that, while retail employees have previously been used to test pre-release versions of OS X and iOS, this marks the first time they've been included in the otherwise developer-only watchOS betas. The company is said to have gone to great lengths to modify the activity tracker for wheelchair users, including changing the "time to stand" notification to "time to roll" and including two wheelchair-centric workout apps. http://bit.ly/2955JDa
SanDisk reveals two 256GB microSDXC cards
SanDisk has introduced two 256GB microSDXC cards. Arriving in August for $150, the Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Premium Edition card offers transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s for reading data. The Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card can read at a fast 100MB/s and write at up to 90MB/s, and will be shipping sometime in the fourth quarter for $200. http://bit.ly/294Q1If
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE
French show carries on with iPhones
Following a prolonged power loss in a French TV studio, the crew was able to use a combination of limited studio lighting and a number of iPhones to continue taping the Saturday episode of talk show On n'est pas couché ("We're Still Awake"), using the resulting footage in the first edited episode. The Plus-model iPhones used for the impromptu shoot completion were either iPhone 6 Plusses (which shoot in 1080p) or 6s Plus models (which can shoot in 4K). The decision to use the iPhones to complete the show was made after a power outage at France 2's studio stretched to more than three hours. http://bit.ly/299wqDt
Scrivener for iOS to arrive in late July
For some long-time Scrivener users, to quote Paul Simon, "these are the days of miracle and wonders." As it marks its 10th anniversary in business, developer Keith Blount has announced that the long-awaited iOS version of his creative-writing tool Scrivener is to be submitted to the App Store, following strong praise from beta-testers. The program, expected in late July, will sell for $20 and work with both the iPad and iPhone. When we interviewed Blount last January, he added that Scrivener 3 for Mac would follow along shorty afterwards. http://bit.ly/2901XLE
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