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Forums: SuperDrive, Dell vs. G4, CPU upgrades
Interesting threads in our reader forums include: Time restrictions with the SuperDrive · Dell Precision 330 Vs PowerMac G4 · Enabling IDE Slave via CPU Upgrade · Availability of dual 533MHz G4s · Updating OS X PB with Darwin · Outlook 8.2 Calendar Problem · LinuxPPC 2000
Bare Feats: NVIDIA vs. ATI
GS: Summoner Impressions, Screenshots
GameSpot has published some brief impressions and 27 new screenshots of Summoner after being treated to a demonstration of the PC 3D role-playing game in action. The Mac version, which will be published by Graphic Simulations Corporation this spring, will be identical to the PC version.
Radeon driver update due next week
ATI Technologies 3D engineer Arshad Rahman reports in the Accelerate Your Mac! forums that the Radeon driver update will be released early next week. "I thought it was supposed to be posted today, but it looks like it'll be up on our website Monday or Tuesday once Customer Service has done their final testing," said Rahman.
MacRun releases Captain Bumper 0.88
MacRun has released Captain Bumper 0.88, a "cartoon-style" arcade game for the Mac. The new version adds a full screen video mode, technical improvements and a new soundtrack.
Women in Gaming Part 2
We have published Women in Gaming Part 2, an interview with the QgirlZ Quake III: Arena clan sponsored by NVIDIA.
IGN: Red Faction Preview
ps2.ign.com has published a preview of Volition's first-person shooter coming to the Mac, PC and Playstation 2 this summer, Red Faction. The article is very in-depth and provides specific examples of how the game's technology contributes to better and more varied gameplay:
You sneak into a room with an opponent on the far end of a fan and the fan is on. Unseen in the corner, you chuck your remote charge and it spins, end over end until it alters direction in mid-air and lands at the feet of your opponent. He still doesn't see you. You switch to ignite, and it's bye-bye birdie.
DiscBurner 1.0 for English-International
Apple has posted the English-International version Disc Burner 1.0, which allows you to create your own data CDs using your built-in CD recorder by updating the Finder. (Disc Burner, however, only creates single-session discs, leaving any unused space on the disc unrecoverable during future recordings.) The English-North American version was made available sometime ago.
MacAMP 2.01 fixes bugs in media player
MacAMP 2.01 is a bug-fix release to popular media player, offering fixes for monitors set a low resolutions, memory handling errors, window positioning issues, and now includes a working version of MacAmp Strip CSM. [full -- 2.0MB; upgrade -- 539KB]
Possibility of Mac TR Editor
Westlake Interactive announced today that the company is hard at work on porting Tomb Raider: Chronicles to the Mac. The title is currently at first playable status, although the company is not announcing an expected release nor have they made a final decision on porting the level editor included with the PC version of the game to the Mac. "...the status of a Mac port of the TR editor is still undecided. We are waiting for source code for the PC editor from Eidos to review. Needless to say, Westlake and Aspyr understand how popular the editor would be, and we're planning to do everything possible to try to get it on the Mac."
MacNN Review: Transporter
We have posted a review of Transporter, the new automation utility from Aladdin Systems.
Pre-Lister 3.6.2 updated for eBay changes
Black Magik Software has released Pre-Lister 3.6.2, a free update to the $35 offline auction-listing utility for use with eBay. Version 3.6.2 brings support for new eBay categories and fee structure as well as other enhancements.
In-store Oni video
Rampancy.net has released the movie that some retailers will be using to promote third-person action game Oni beginning next Monday in their stores. The footage, which lasts for more than 15 minutes, was taken from a VHS tape supplied to retailers by Take Two Interactive and converted into a QuickTime movie.
Jobs: Mac market share, DVD strategy, PB G4
Steve Jobs pledged to continue fighting for Mac market share and reiterated the company's predictions of a small profit in the fiscal second quarter, in his latest all-hands meeting with Apple staff on Thursday morning. Jobs also reportedly told attendees that PowerBook G4 will begin shipping next week and focused on Apple's DVD strategy.
UTJB Map Pack 1 Released
The UT JailBreak team has released UTJB Map Pack 1, a collection of six user-created maps for the Unreal Tournament mod. Among them: JB-Coloraido, JB-Deck16][, JB-EternalCave, JB-Niven, JB-Phasm and JB-LavaGiant.
OS X: LATimes column, new OmniWeb beta
osx.macnn.com has a note about LATimes recent "promises and pitfalls" column on Mac OS X and Omnigroup's latest OmniWeb browser release.
OmniWeb 4.0b9 fixes bugs, CSS support problem
Omnigroup has posted OmniWeb 4.0b9, its full-featured native web browser for Mac OS X written using Apple's advanced Cocoa frameworks. This version has a number of bug fixes, disables CSS by default (due to incompatibilities with certain Websites), and has proper form submission. OmniWeb is free but the company is encouraging users to support development by purchasing a $30 license ($20 for education).
LATimes: OS X full of promise and pitfalls
Jim Heid's column in the LA Times says that OS X is full of promise and pitfalls: "Even though Mac OS X ships in March, it won't be factory-installed on new Macs until July. Why the delay? Because initially, there won't be much software for Mac OS X."
WDAMMG 2.1 adds security, formatting
WhereDidAllMyMoneyGo? 2.1 adds password protection, centrally formatted currency options, more delete options and some bug fixes to the $25 shareware personal multi-currency income, expense and stock tracker. A preview version runs natively on OSX.
Alien Crossfire 1.2.1 Released
Aspyr Media has released Alien Crossfire 1.2.1, a patch for the expansion pack to Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri. The new version fixes a problem with Play-by-Email (PBEM) with Windows users, adds a higher manual refresh rate setting, adds the ability to choose which monitor to use, adds a fix for the black/white issue in OS 9.1, adds the command key as an alternative for bringing up the options screen at startup, fixes an issue with movies not playing on some machines and makes a number of gameplay tweaks.
Oni Move: Twister Kick
Games: Rune Add-on, "Nordic Myth"
games.macnn.com has posted an update on Tomb Raider: Chronicles for the Mac as well as the possibility of bringing the multiplayer-focused Rune Add-on Pack to Mac gamers. In addition, the site has added "Nordic Myth" to Custer's Corner, a massive collection of gaming-related desktop pictures. [updated]
Custer's Corner: Nordic Myth
Alexander 1.0: new QT authoring utility
Alexander 1.0 is a new QuickTime authoring utility that allows users to insert and create interactive elements within QuickTime streams. It provides the ability to insert links, create customized players for your streams (with live chat features), and QT movies that can be updated by replacing a text file. It also offers a new add-on, QT5 SkinWiz, which allows you to create skins for the QuickTime Player that can be attached to movies. Licensing starts at $5 per month.
Charismac ships Discribe 4.0 mastering app
Charismac Engineering is now shipping its $100 CD mastering software Discribe v4.0. Introduced at Macworld Expo SF earlier this month, it offers an enhanced interface, the ability to drag and drop MP3 files to create audio compilation CDs, and includes AudioScribe v2.0, a direct-to-disk recording utility that allows you to record vinyl, tape or voice to hard disk, and eventually to CD with Discribe. The $40 competitive upgrade is available at a special price of $30. [5-disc demo]
InfoInterActive available for Macs Monday
InfoInterActive, an Internet call manager for the Macintosh, will launch on Monday. When dial-up users are online and they receive a call, the service provides a pop-up window, with name, number and location of the caller. The user can then decide if he wants to take the call, send it to voice mail, transfer to another phone, play the message or ignore the call. The service costs $5 a month.
Belkin may manufacture ADC-to-VGA adapter
Mac users interested in seeing an ADC-to-VGA adapter brought to market should call Sean Angus of Belkin at (800) 223-5546 to express interest in the product, according to one MacNN reader who spoke with Belkin and learned the company would make such an adapter if there was sufficient demand.
CalcWorks, CalcWorks SE updated to 1.7.1
Brochu Software has updated its line of CalcWorks calculators, CalcWorks and CalcWorks SE, to version 1.7.1. The new versions have been updated to include the latest official currency conversion rates.
DealNN: iBook/300 $1,000, G3 modem $20
Bargains today at DealNN include a refurbished iBook G3/300 for $1,000; a 56K internal modem for PowerMac G3 for $20; Adaptec Toast 3.5.2 for Macintosh for $15 and the 22-inch Cinema Display for $3,600.
Tech news: MS hacked, Excite@home disappoints
Early morning tech news: Microsoft's Web site outage yesterday was caused by hackers using denial of service attacks; Excite@home reported disappointing earnings yesterday that included a loss of $5.43 billion when one-time charges are taken into account; and spam filters may be doing the opposite of their intended purpose in some cases, according to a new report.
Human Head Chat Summary
During a chat last evening with Human Head Studios hosted by GameVisions, Business Director Tim Gerritsen commented on the status of bringing the company's unofficially announced add-on pack for Rune to the Mac. "...that is something to be negotiated out with Gathering of Developers," said Gerritsen. "From a map perspective, the maps work either for PC or Mac. It is the code support that needs to be supported, and that is what we need to work out with Westlake. We aren't ready to make the call just yet." In addition to the Rune add-on pack, the company will be working on a currently unannounced title and hopes to do a Rune 2, "though it isn't on our immediate Radar," said Gerritsen. The company neglected to talk about new game modes in the multiplayer-focused Rune add-on pack; instead, the company plans to show off the new game modes once they have been completely implemented. "We want to make sure we are ready to reveal what's under our skirt when we have something there to show you," Gerritsen told attendees.
Roundup: Diablo II Exp. Set named and more
Yesterday Blizzard Entertainment announced the official name for the Diablo II Expansion Set, Bullseye Software released SkyFighters 1945 1.02 and a Q&A with ATI 3D engineer Chris Bentley revealed that the next major update to the Radeon Mac Edition drivers will include support for full-scene anti-aliasing, cube mapping and bump mapping. We published a review of Monopoly, the classic Hasbro Brothers board game brought to the Mac in full 3D.
Update on Mac Deus Ex MP patch
Westlake Interactive President Mark Adams told games.macnn.com that the company will soon be evaluating the decision to port the Deus Ex multiplayer patch to the Mac. "We're still waiting for the code for the final multilplayer PC patch (which I don't think they've released yet)," said Adams. "Once the final PC patch is out and we get the code, we'll take a look at it."
Summoner developer diaries return
Developer diaries for 3D role-playing game Summoner have returned at pc.ign.com as the game nears its release on the Mac and PC in April. Lead Programmer Mark Allender discusses the issues that the development team faces as it moves its work done on the Playstation 2 version of the game to computer platforms including the addition of multiplayer. "Multiplayer might be one of the most anticipated features of the PC version of Summoner," says Allender, "and we are doing our best to make the gameplay great. There are however, a ton of details that we have to think about and work through to make multiplayer work properly."
WWII Online Chat Transcript
World War II Online HQ has posted a transcript from yesterday's chat with Cornered Rat Software, developers of World War II Online. The transcript includes some information on the Mac version of the beta which will be discussed in more detail soon. "Hoss has that all planned out, and we'll be getting some Mac news out soon. I saw it running yesterday on a G4 at 29 FPS."
Red Faction Platform Differences
Volition's Mike Breault, a writer working on the upcoming first-person shooter Red Faction, commented yesterday on the differences between the Mac, PC and Playstation 2 versions of the game. Thanks Voodoo Extreme.
The answer I have for you is that the graphics will be as good as we can make them for each platform. Each platform has different strengths and weaknesses; neither one has any clear-cut advantage in the graphics department, that I can tell. There are tradeoffs with each platform. I have no clue what to tell you about which version you would think is better. Someone who looks carefully at textures will probably notice differences between the versions; I wouldn't notice and I don't know that most people would or which they would prefer if they do notice.
TSR: House Party Chat Transcript
The Sims Resource has published a transcript from yesterday's chat with Maxis Jenna Chalmers and Sean Baity, Assistant Producers on the upcoming second expansion pack, The Sims: House Party. The title has yet to be officially announced for the Mac, although there is a high likelihood considering the success of both The Sims and The Sims: Livin' Large for the Mac. "Getting the caterer and mime in the room at the same time with the mechanical bull will be a riot," said Baity.
Q3:A Freeze Tag 1.4a Released
Freeze Tag 1.4a is a new version of the mod for Quake III: Arena which adds a couple of minor bug fixes, more spawn points, droppable weapons and items, bot thawing AI improvements and more.
New Grappler firmware adds 'deep sleep'
Orange Micro's Grappler Flash SCSI Update Utility v1.4.7 adds support for Apple's Power Manager 2.0 Deep Sleep mode. The utility updates the firmware in the company's Grappler SCSI 906F, Grappler+ Serial, Grappler SCSI 930U, and Grappler SCSI 940UW cards.
FileBuddy 6.04 fixes bugs in system utility
SkyTag Software's Filebuddy 6.04, is now available online, offering a few bug fixes and minor enhancements to the $40 utility for editing file/folder attributes.
AIMM 1.3: AOL IM client clone updated
AIMM 1.3 brings several bug fixes and enhancements to the freeware AOL instant messaging client clone.
Delays in Met@box upgrades due to OS 9.1?
A MacNN reader notes problems with delivery of Met@box upgrade cards:
"After a one week delay in getting an update about an order I placed for a JoeCard Z upgrade, I got news from the folks I placed the order with that MetaBox has held the shipping of all of their G3 500 and G4 upgrade cards, pending the resolution of a driver code issue with XLR8. When I asked if the problem was related to the 9.1 upgrade, the representative said 'I can't really go into further detail'. The distributors should have an answer from MetaBox by Monday or Tuesday as to 'whether or not' they expect the cards to ship."
Virtual PC 4.0.1 squashes bugs
Connectix has posted Virtual PC 4.0.1, which resolves a handful of minor issues with the PC emulator. (For those having trouble with the direct download link, please try here.) [update pulled by Connectix at of 11 pm ET]
Roundup: VAR meeting, NAMM report, PB review
Yesterday we posted a note about the Apple VAR meeting at MWSF, a brief report from last week's NAMM show, and WSJ's favorable review of the Titanium PowerBook G4. Other updates included the release of Media100's Cleaner MPEG SuperCharger, Apple's OpenGL 1.2 SDK, LabCalc 1.1.2, MOTU's Digital Performer 3.0 and 838 FireWire interface, and LightWorks 5.6.
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