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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 today compares the NVIDIA GeForce2 MX, ATI Radeon and ATI Rage 128 Pro on a 466 MHz Power Mac G4 in Quake III: Arena, Cinema 4D and Photoshop.
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.
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 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.
We have published Women in Gaming Part 2, an interview with the QgirlZ Quake III: Arena clan sponsored by NVIDIA.
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.
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 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]
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.\"
We have posted a review of Transporter, the new automation utility from Aladdin Systems.
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.
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.
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.
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.
osx.macnn.com has a note about LATimes recent \"promises and pitfalls\" column on Mac OS X and Omnigroup\'s latest OmniWeb browser release.
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).
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.\"
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.
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.
The Twister Kick is today\'s featured move at Gathering of Developer\'s official Oni web site. The kick combines dodge and attack into a single spinning move. [flash 5 required]
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 has been updated with \"Nordic Myth\", a desktop picture featuring Viking-themed third-person 3D action game Rune.
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 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, 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.\"
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.
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.\"
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.
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.\"
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.
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.
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.
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 brings several bug fixes and enhancements to the freeware AOL instant messaging client clone.
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.\"
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]
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.
Now AAPL Stock: 93.99 ( + 0.29 )
Google killing Picasa starting May 1
Google Photos head Anil Sabharwal confirmed in a blog post today that the search engine giant will be shutting down acquisition Picasa. Support and downloads for the desktop application will terminate on March 15 with the application continuing to work for the time being. The transition to Google Photos truly commences on May 1, with deprecation of some Picasa API calls happening shortly thereafter. Users that have Google Photos access will find their photos already migrated. A mass-download tool for users not wishing to use Google Photos will be available sometime after May 1. http://bit.ly/1SmV2KH
Rogue Amoeba Piezo updated, departing App Store
In order to continue working on audio capture tool Piezo, developer Rogue Amoeba has simultaneously updated the app to version 1.5, and announced that it will pull version 1.2.6 from the Mac App Store. Customers who own the Mac App Store version have a one-time migration process to the Rogue Amoeba-served version. The company notes that the sandboxing restriction placed on Mac App Store versions "effectively stopped our ability to upgrade Piezo in any meaningful way." [8.80MB] http://bit.ly/1PIjz7l
FCC spectrum auction will happen without Google
After throwing its hat in earlier, Google (and associated companies) has declared that it is not participating in this year's FCC spectrum auction. A company spokeswoman said of the auction that "like all those interested in improved connectivity and equitable access, we'll be following the upcoming spectrum auction closely. That said, we have not filed to participate." http://on.recode.net/1oy5LWk
iPad Air 3, iPhone 5se sold Friday after launch?
Reverting the way products are actually released by Apple after an announcement to the way it was a decade ago, reports are circulating that new products revealed at a March announcement will go on sale the Friday immediately following the unveil. Slated to appear at a conjectural Tuesday, March 15 event are a new Apple four-inch phone with more up to date internals currently referred to as the iPhone 5se, and a new iPad Air 3 model with Smart Connector and other enhancements. http://bit.ly/1o7mqiY
Lexmark prevails in toner import appeal
Printer manufacturer Lexmark has won an appeal on the third-party US resale of its printer cartridges originally destined for markets outside North America. The appeals court ruled in a 10-2 vote in favor of Lexmark's demand to stop the sale and against Impression Products, both on the toner cartridge resale matter, as well as a related matter regarding overturning the reseller's refilling one-use cartridges and selling those in the US market. The ruling has ramifications in the tech industry, as well as the pharmaceutical and medical technology markets. Impression Products promises an appeal before the supreme court. http://reut.rs/1SLVmmG
AT&T expands BOGO promo to iPhone 6s
Beginning today, new and existing AT&T customers can purchase a new iPhone 6s and get another one free when adding a second line. Over the weekend, customers must purchase two phones through AT&T Next (one can be an existing number), and add both phones to a qualified plan. AT&T notes that "after three bill cycles or less" the account will start to receive up to $650 spread out over 30 monthly bill credits to offset the cost of the installment plan for the phone. Taxes are due at time of sale. http://soc.att.com/1SLUP4k
Google prevails in UK street mapping case
Possibly setting the stage for other court battles in the UK, a High Court fight between Google and StreetMap.EU has concluded in Google's favor. StreetMap.EU claimed that Google's dominance in the field destroyed the 20-year-old firm's business, when Google started promoting its own service in search results over the older company's -- the judge disagreed. Commercial director Kate Sutton said after the judgment that "StreetMap has been frozen in time; because of what Google did, StreetMap has not been able to properly invest in the website since 2007." An appeal is planned. http://bloom.bg/1KKhECt