Copyright © 2015
Readers note that Canadian residents are now eligible for Apple\'s PowerBook 5300/190 trade-in program, which we first noted several days ago. The program, which expires March 23, offers a PowerBook G3/400MHz machine for $1,599 ($2,399 CAD) for those who return a PowerBook 5300 or PowerBook 190 to Apple within 21 days of a Apple Store order. (Apple is offering a G3/400MHz PowerBook to all education customers for the same price without a trade-in.)
Personal/Group Organizer 3.08, an update to Chronos\' information manager for personal and network users (sharing calendar and contact information with other users). Version 3.0 8 bug fixes and improves networking performance. [Personal, Group - 2.6 MB]
BBE FTP Open 1.1.2 adds support for BBEdit 6.0 and Fetch 4.0 to the AppleScript-implemented relational database that facilitates the editing of remote files via FTP in BBEdit, with support for multiple files per account, multiple accounts per host, multiple hosts, and the simultaneous opening of multiple files.
Evening console news: Sony has confirmed that Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty for the Playstation 2 is set to be released in Fall 2001 in the U.S.; Capcom has cut 17 of the planned 24 chapters for the RPG El Dorado Gate for the Sega Dreamcast; and Amusement Vision will open a new North American server this week for the versus battle mode in Daytona USA for the Dreamcast, which is scheduled to be released this week in the U.S.
GoneGold.com reports that the PC version of Summoner, the 3D fantasy role-playing game from Volition, has been sent off for manufacturing. The Mac version of the game, which has been simultaneously developed for the Mac and PC by Volition but will be published by Graphic Simulations Corporation, is expected to ship in April.
HP today introduced an all-in-one, USB-based multifunction device with a flatbed printer/scanner/copier. The HP PSC 750 all-in-one, described as the \"smallest flatbed all-in-one from HP to date, ships in neutral blue and cool gray casing. The device offers 2400 x 1200 dpi color printing on photo paper at up to 8.5 pages per minute (11 ppm for black output); scanning at resolutions of up to 600 x 1200 dpi optical resolution (9600 dpi enhanced resolution) and 36-bit color; and photo-quality copying at speeds of 11 copies per minute (cpm) in black and 8 cpm in color. It is expected to ship later this month for $300.
Evening tech news: Cisco\'s announcement that it would cut as much as 11 percent of its workforcethe company\'s first layoffs in 17 yearsis seen as a sign that the slowing economy in the U.S. is spreading worldwide; Sony, Toshiba and IBM have teamed up to spend $400 million over the next 5 years on the development of a new microprocessor, code-named Cell, which will be used in the next-generation of consumer electronic devices including the Playstation 3; and Intel, in its attempt to cut costs, has postponed a program to provide free high-performance PCs and Internet access to its U.S. employees, although employees outside of the U.S. will still receive their free computer.
This week\'s Forbes.com Street Fight features Needham\'s analyst Charles R. Wolf and Standard & Poor\'s Megan Graham Hackett discussing the value of Apple\'s stock and the company\'s relative strengths and weaknesses going forward.
FirewireDirect.com has announced a new external FireWire-based DVD-RAM drive. It says that the DVD-RAM mechanism will read \"all DVD discs and CDs, and will record thousands of times to DVD-RAM media, new and unique dual-sided encased discs that will hold up to 9.4 GB of digital data.\" The $600 drive, availale for ordering now, ships with a single dual sided 9.4 GB DVD-RAM disc, power supply, all necessary software and a 3-ft FireWire cable.
Wit SoundView today reiterated its \"buy\" rating on Apple. Shares of Apple fell 8% today as the Dow lost 436 points and the Nasdaq fell nearly 130 points.
Afternoon console news: Nintendo and Electronic Arts have dropped a suit against Yahoo! as part of an agreement to prevent the sale of counterfeit video game products on the Internet media company\'s auctions and classified sites; No One Lives Forever, the \'60s-themed first-person shooter that has captured Action Game of the Year awards from industry magazines and is nominated for awards from the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences, is now in development for the Playstation 2; and Sharp plans to increase sales of its liquid crystal displays (LCDs) in part by supplying small LCDs for Nintendo\'s Game Boy Advance, which is slated for a June release in the U.S.
Sustainable Softworks\' IPNetTuner 1.4, formerly OT Advanced Tuner, is an application that allows you to optimize TCP/IP network performance by tuning one of 30 internal TCP/IP parameters to match your network environment, including the TCP Window Size, Time Out intervals, Maximum Segment Size, and MTU.
IPNetSentry 1.0, from Sustainable Softworks, is a new security application that \"silently and intelligently watches for suspicious behavior, and when triggered, invokes a solid filter which completely bans the potential intruder from your Macintosh.\"
The Mac version of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - The Fallen is expected to be sent to manufacturing by the end of the week and be on store shelves within four to six weeks, according to IMG. The third-person 3D action/adventure game has been delayed on the Mac due to continued development on the game\'s MP3-based sound engine.
Wolfpack Studios has released two new Quicktime movies featuring its upcoming massive multiplayer online role-playing game for the Mac and PC, Shadowbane. The first movie, Elven Party, shows an Elven Warrior and his party while the second movie, Elf in Town, illustrates the simplicity of equipping your character and controlling the camera. The two movies are available in both 640 x 480 and 320 x 280 resolutions.
Handspring introduced Visor Edge, an ultra-thin, \"infinitely\" expandable handheld: the $400 Visor Edge is Handspring\'s first slim-design handheld, which combines a sleek and lightweight metal casing with the optional expandability of the Springboard platform and is immediately available in three metallic colors (silver, blue, and red).
This week\'s new desktop at Custer\'s Corner is \"Arcane Practitioner\", which features the Necromancer and Diablo from Diablo II.
After months of development, Sentry Studios has released Infiltration 2.85, a new version of its popular military modification for Unreal Tournament. The new version adds online play, a new menu interface, new character models, an additional weapon, a new breathing system, a new scope, improved bot AI, new player voices, a new bulk system, a new map pack and more.
Bitstream has released Type Odyssey, a CD-ROM that includes the entire Bitstream Typeface Library as well as \"distinctive designs and new releases from independent foundries and designers in the U.S. and the U.K.\" It includes over 1,000 high-quality fonts, including display faces and families of text faces in both TrueType and PostScript formats on a a \"completely unlocked CD-ROM.\" [pricing not available]
Last Friday our latest Covert Gaming Corner featured an interview with Blizzard Entertainment\'s Brian \'Doc\' Love on Diablo II: Lord of Destruction and Fox Interactive\'s Kyle Peschel provided an update on the Mac version of Aliens vs. Predator: Gold Edition.
APC today introduced the Back-UPS CS 350VA and 500VA, a new line of desktop UPS units: both offer battery backup power in a smaller, sleeker form factor as well as support for file saving and application shutdown on both Windows and Mac operating systems via USB. The new line offers six power outlets, optimized alarm indicators, fax/modem and DSL surge protection, user replaceable batteries and a $25,000 lifetime connected equipment protection policy. The Back-UPS CS 350 and 500 models are $85 and $130 respectively and are expected to ship in the second quarter of this year. They are both part of APC\'s Trade-UPS Program in which users can trade their older UPS units for a discount on a new CS model.
Bungie Community Guy Matt Soell has provided his latest update on the development of Halo, the company\'s 3D action game for the Mac, PC and X-Box, that covers jeep physics and effects, enemy AI, music and melee attacks with weapons. \"We\'ve got melee attacks in for several weapons,\" explains Soell. \"It\'s quite fun to drive the jeep up to a building\'s front door and let Marcus distract the Covenant forces with the chain gun while you sneak in a side door, creep up behind them and slam the butt of your assault rifle into the back of their heads.\"
Gathering of Developers has unveiled its official web site for the upcoming strategy/simulation game from PopTop Software, Tropico. The web site is packed with all of the usual game information, screenshots and trailer as well as a \"You Rule Tropico\" contest that lets you enter in the name and profile of a dictator that could be chosen as a default dictator within the game.
Expected to be approved this summer and incorporated in products as early as the end of this year, the new USB On-the-Go spec may \"essentially eliminate the role of the PC as a go-between,\" allowing manufacturers to create gadgets/devices that can connect to each other without a PC; it will allow devices such as digital cameras, cell phones and handhelds to be hosts or slaves.
Apple will be sponsoring six sessions at this year\'s Game Developers Conference (GDC) held March 20-24th in San Jose. Sessions will focus on game development for MacOS X and Apple\'s Developer Technical Support Staff will be present to run the sessions. The presentations include such topics as 2D and 3D graphics, 3D Modeling and Rendering Techniques, Motion Capture and Character Animation Techniques and Making Money with Mac Games.
Quark today announced QuarkCopyDesk Special Edition, a $300 stand-alone, text processing and editing application that \"provides users with exact copyfitting information and typographic control, but without the overhead of graphic features.\" QuarkCopyDesk SE integrates with QuarkXPress and includes unique features intended specifically for writers and editors, such as WYSIWIG display, full screen or gallery view, and multiple article components within a single document. It is extensible via QuarkExtensions and an XTensions Developer Kit (XDK) allows developers to create XTensions software or OEM solutions for QuarkCopyDesk SE.
Nemetschek North America today released VectorWorks 9, an update to its flagship CAD application. Version 9 brings improvements to the core CAD engine with stability and accuracy enhancements as well as a 64-bit floating point coordinate system. Other changes include DXF & DWG Import/Export commands that now support AutoCAD 2000i, new spelling checker and Find/Replace commands, 3D technology with NURBS support and Extrude-along-a-Path command, and support for OpenGL. [pricing not available]
Ian Patterson has released OniTools 1.3, a new version of his utility for viewing textures, 3D objects and sound files in Bungie\'s third-person 3D action game, Oni. Version 1.3 fixes the \"missing polygon problem\", adds new resource types and adds the ability to import resources.
Nemetschek also introduced RenderWorks 9, an updated version of its photo-realistic plug-in for Architect 9, Spotlight 9 and Landmark 9, which brings new tools, better control and flexibility in addition to a customizable shader texture component. New tools include Color, Reflectivity, Transparency and Bump shader components, NURBS, enhanced rendering with LightWorks capabilities, and VRML Import and Export.
BrokenPixel.com has published an interview with Bioware\'s Brent Knowles, Co-Lead Designer on 3D role-playing game Neverwinter Nights. \"The team is committed to making a game that is fun to play,\" says Knowles, \"whether played alone or with a group. But that\'s the beauty of Neverwinter Nights: the story is just as exciting and just as challenging (thanks to a scaling encounter system) whether you are playing on-line with friends, or off-line by yourself.\"
Morning console news: Activision has signed an agreement with Fox Interactive to publish and distribute The Simpsons Wrestling for the Playstation in the U.S. and Canada later this spring; Interplay has released a new video clip showing its upcoming Playstation 2 action/survival game, Run Like Hell, in action; and registration for Phantasy Star Online, Sega\'s online role-playing game, has surpassed 200,000 users.
FileMaker today announced that it has shipped more than 30,000 copies of FileMaker Mobile for Palm OS since the software was introduced three months ago. The $50 application allows users to transfer and synchronize data between their Palm and FileMaker databases. Since Jan. 9 the company has included FileMaker Mobile for free with copies of FileMaker Pro 5; however, the offer expires March 16.
Consultant Adam Hawkes sent us a note about his efforts to troubleshoot Epson 777 printing under OS 9.1 when using both Suitcase and ATM Light.
Softobe\'s FolderSynchronizer 2.02 fixes a few bugs in the $30 shareware utility for synchronizing and backing-up folders and disks.
Tally Systems today announced TS.Ready 4.0, its browser-based asset management, file distribution, and support application for enterprise environments. Version 4 brings support for both Linux and Mac systems as well as remote-location support options, automated file distribution, dynamic bandwidth control, incremental information transfer, checkpoint restart, background/transparent operation, and secure authentication and encryption. Pricing is based on number of client connections.
Agfa Monotype has added several new Indic typeface designs to its WorldType multilingual typeface library, including 60 new typeface designs across the nine major Indic scripts (Devanagari, Bengali, Tamil, Telugu, Gujerati, Gurmukhi, Kannada, Malayalam and Oriya).
In conjunction with today\'s Acrobat 5 announcement, Cardiff Software and Adobe announced an expanded alliance to deliver complete automated electronic form solutions based on Acrobat 5. Cardiff will offer LiquidForms, an XML-based eForm management system that brings form design and Web-based approval and submission Acrobat 5. The Java-based server is expected to ship in May and is free for end-users (enterprise pricing not available).
Adobe today introduced Acrobat 5.0, a \"major\" upgrade to its PDF workflow and creation software that brings enhanced capabilities for creating, digitally signing and sending secure documents as well as improved electronic form functionality.
games.macnn.com has updated its Custer\'s Corner with a new desktop picture, \"Arcane Practitioner\", featuring the Necromancer and Diablo from Blizzard Entertainment\'s Diablo II.
MotorTrend Online reports that the Nissan\'s Chappo uses two Power Mac G4 Cubes to power its built-in Infotainment system for full motion video, computer-powered navigation system, DVD playback, and Internet access, according to a Macworld UK report.
Both Apple and Earthlink have \"strong growth prospects,\" according to the Chief investment officer of ValueWorks@M&R Capital Management. \"[Charles Lemonides] values Apple\'s operating assets at $30 a share and its cash and marketable securities at nearly $15. He thinks Apple will break even in 2001 ending Sept. 30 and earn $1.50 a share in 2002, as the economy stabilizes and new products kick in. Apple has done well with new products in recent years, says Lemonides, but the PC sales slump hurt earnings.\"
The $25 shareware Atomic Mac 5.0, a periodic table of the elements and nuclear database, is now available in both Carbon (for Mac OS X) and Classic versions.
Fourth World today released WebMerge 1.5, an update to its tool that generates static Web pages from database files. Version 1.5 adds workflow automation options, better HTML generation, support for tab-delimited export formats, Apple event support, and other enhancements. A demo of the $70 application is available onlne.
Redcort Software\'s software replacement for traditional employee time clocks, Virtual TimeClock Pro 3.1, brings a new TimeCard editor that enables adding/deleting entries \'on the fly\', removes QuickTime-dependency, and has dymanic editing of access protections. Net TimeClock 3.1, a network client Virtual TimeClock, is also available with the same changes.
Now AAPL Stock: 94.27 ( -0.72 )
HBO Now has 800,000 subscribers
The CEO of HBO, Richard Plepler has confirmed that the online streaming HBO service, HBO Now, has 800,000 subscribers. When criticized for the seemingly low number, Plepler noted that the still nascent service was bound to Apple exclusivity during the fifth season of Game of Thrones. Plepler declared during the Time Warner quarterly earnings conference call marketing for the online-only offering would be enhanced in 2016. While HBO Now's critics are slamming the low numbers, the service must also compete against itself on cable, in addition to Netflix and other streaming services. http://on.recode.net/1QWoLHe
Unsafe IoT called threat to humanity
US Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told two different Senate committees yesterday that the Internet of Things posed a clear and present danger, and could be weaponized by governments. Before the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Clapper declared that insecure IoT "will bring new security vulnerabilities" and "will connect tens of billions of new physical devices that could be exploited" by those wishing to perpetrate violence or eavesdrop on the populace of the world. http://bit.ly/23Xvcky
Apple public betas for iOS 9.3, OS X 10.11.4
Following Monday's release of betas for the iOS and OS X, Apple has unveiled public betas for both operating systems. The iOS 9.3 beta includes all of the previously reported enhancements for education customers, along with Wi-Fi calling for Verizon iPhone owners, and a carrier update for T-Mobile users. The OS X 10.11.4 third beta includes enhancements to Twitter URL opening, Live Photo viewing and sharing, and Evernote note importation into Notes.
Google given NHTSA SDS waivers
In contrast to the California Department of Motor Vehicle's approach, the US National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) has confirmed that it is declaring the software in autonomous cars is the legal driver of a so-equipped vehicle. In a letter to Google, the NHTSA says that it "will interpret 'driver' in the context of Google's described motor vehicle design as referring to the SDS [self-driving system], and not to any of the vehicle occupants." Other matters, such as legally-required rear-view mirrors for occupied vehicles has yet to be determined. However, regulations specifying the "driver" need no longer be interpreted as meaning a person behind the wheel, as the agency writes that self-driving cars "will not have a 'driver' in the traditional sense that vehicles have had drivers during the last more than one hundred years" http://1.usa.gov/1QrAGtR
Dropshare 4 for Mac now available
Dropshare 4 for Mac has shipped, introducing support for uploading files and screenshots to Amazon S3 API-compliant services, like DreamObjects and OpenStack. The update also introduces a new popup design, an in-app editor for custom landing pages, an improved upload history window, and security improvements when using SSH connections. The paid upgrade costs $25, though it is free for customers who bought the previous version this year and half-price for those who acquired version 3 of the app last year. http://bit.ly/1XixV3q
Google starting phase-out of Flash ads
Search engine and advertising giant Google will shortly no longer accept Adobe Flash-created ads for its AdWords network. Starting June 30, ads in the once-ubiquitous format will no longer be accepted. Additionally, after January 2, 2017, the network will no longer serve Flash-based advertisements, and the network will be completely HTML 5 based. http://bit.ly/1PNx1uc
Sonos now works with Apple Music
Wireless music system manufacturer Sonos has announced that its systems worldwide will gain compatibility for streaming the paid Apple Music subscription service starting today, February 10. "Music fans worldwide will have access to Apple Music features like For You, New, Radio, and My Music, and will also be able to stream the entire Apple Music catalog through Sonos smart speakers tuned for great sound in every room of their homes," the company said in an email to journalists. Apple Music's streaming service costs $10 per month, with a free three-month trial. http://bit.ly/1Wdi2Ko