Evening tech news: Amazon.com has acquired some assets of Egghead.com, which filed for bankruptcy protection earlier this year, for $6.1 million in cash; Pay-for-play site MusicNet, which will allow users to stream or download tunes using RealPlayer from the libraries of AOL Time Warner, Bertelsmann and EMI Group, starting at $10 per month; and A new viruslike e-mail that purports to be a computer screen saver program is spreading through email, as thousands of users are reporting infection by the worm called \"Goner.\"
Memora today announced the release of Memora Photo, a personal photo server for the home that will distribute photos and video securely over the Web. Memora Photo generates an album with customizable title and captions, photo orientation, and sharing privileges. A free 21-day trial of the $50 application is available on the Web.
Apple today announced that Final Cut Pro on the Macintosh is quickly becoming the preferred platform for producing trailers and commercials for Hollywood\'s biggest movies. This year represents a large gain for Apple in this market; Apple reports top movie trailer companies like The Cimarron Group and Trailer Park have already made the move to FCP for the majority of their systems.
Kebawe\'s AutoCat 3.0.3, a $15 disks cataloger for OS X or Mac OS 9 with CarbonLib, fixes some problems with StuffIt archives, and includes the latest StuffItEngineLib v6.5.1.
Several MacNN readers note that Apple\'s Final Cut Pro Web page mentions a yet-unreleased Mac OS 9.2.2, hinting at its release in the near future: \"Final Cut Pro 3 requires Mac OS X v10.1.1 or Mac OS 9.2.2, a Macintosh computer with a 300MHz or faster PowerPC G3 or G4 processor with built-in FireWire, 256MB of RAM (384MB recommended for G4 realtime effects), and 40MB of available disk space for installation. A 500MHz (or higher) PowerPC G4 processor is required for G4 realtime effects, and a 667MHz PowerBook G4 is required for mobile realtime DV effects.\"
\'The Big Nerd Ranch\' is hosting a post-MacWorld programming course, January 12-16, 2002 in South San Francisco. The 5 day training session will deal with Cocoa Programming on Mac OS X 10.1. Class fee is $2500.
Gideon Softworks has released an updated version of Snard 0.8, its dock and menu-based application launcher. Snard uses dock pop-up menus to organize programs in a tidier way than Apple\'s default Dock configuration.
Pinnacle today introduced Commotion Pro 4.1, a new version of its integrated paint, compositing, and special effects software. The package, available stand-alone and as part of its CineWave solution, now offers direct integration with Final Cut Pro and supports OS X in addition to Mac OS 9. The free update will be available in late December for all existing Commotion Pro 4, Commotion 4, CineWave, and TARGA 3000 customers.
c|net notes some users have found a way \"to turn a complimentary Mac OS X upgrade CD into a free copy of the operating system itself.\" In Ocotober, Apple distributed free Mac OS X 10.0-to-10.1 upgrade CDs, for owners of Mac OS X.
Nojan Moshiri notes that \"Cisco has released a VPN client for Cisco 3000 series VPN concentrators. Previously there was a client only for 5000 series concentrators. The file is available for download to those with an account on www.cisco.com and was released on November 29, 2001.\"
Architectural Record, discussing the place of Macs in today\'s design industry, says that \"designers dig the Mac’s iconic look, but lower-priced, faster PCs have eaten into Apple’s market share in recent years.\"
Electric Image has released Electric Universe 4, an update to the $1000 software animation package. Version 4 offers OS X compatibility (as a native Carbon appliation), new character skinning tools, new constraint and global illumination systems, an enhanced OpenGL engine, new modeler features, an improved drawing system, motion blur preview, and new icons in the animator. Upgrades from v3.1 are $350.
MacSoft\'s Tropico X v1.03 improves stability, including difficulties when changing graphics settings and when switching resolutions.
Bold has released Age of Empires II 1.0.3, an update to its real-time strategy game that fixes multiplayer syncronization issues and a random crash that usually occurred late in the game.
As anticipated earlier today, Apple today announced Final Cut Pro 3, an upgrade to Apple\'s professional video editing solution. Version 3 offers OS X compatibility, G4 real-time effects with real-time playback, hardware-accurate color correction tools, a new OfflineRT format for over 40 minutes of footage per gigabyte, a new Voice Over tool, an enhanced Media Manager, and timecode overlays. Upgrades to the $1000 application are $300 for v2.0 owners. It is expected to ship this month. (Note that G4 real-time effects require a 500-MHz or faster processor and that a 667-MHz PowerBook G4 is required for mobile G4 real-time effects in DV format.)
Research Systems has announced that it will reverse an earlier decision to drop support for the OS X platform, saying that it is now committed to providing a native OS X releases of IDL and ENVI for OS X.
A MacNN Reader notes that Apple has released iDVD 2.0.5 via the Software Update control panel, although the update is not availlable for direct download.
Intego today announced the release of NetBarrier 10 for Mac OS X. NetBarrier is one of the most popular personal firewalls for the Mac OS. The fully rewritten, Mac OS X application is available for $60; upgrade prices range from $30-$50.
The OpenGL Architectural Review Board has posted a short survey for Software and Hardware developers interested in the direction and ideas behind OpenGL 2.0. The ARB is considering taking advantage of these developments and is currently compiling a interested developers.
SCGI announced today that it has completed development of the Mac OS X version of its popular \'Asiva® Photo\' application. Asiva Photo 1.02 OSX, as the new version is called, includes several performance and utility enhancements. Asiva Photo sells for $378.
Julien Jalon\'s freeware DynDNS client, DNSUpdate 2.2, adds selection of the \"Default Interface\" for using the active interface defined in the Network Preferences, the ability to uninstall the daemon with the application, supports German localization, and has an \"abuse\" protection scheme.
Apple today officially announced openings of its Palisades (West Nyack, NY) and Rockingham Park stores. Both grand openings will take place on Saturday, December 8th at 9:00 a.m. ET.
Apple may be preparing to introduce a remodeled iMac computer in January to reinvigorate sales to consumers, according to Morgan Stanley analyst Gillian Munson\'s report to clients. The report indicates that Apple has ordered as many as 100,000 units next month, and that the new models, which may include a flat-panel screen, could help increase sales by 66% to about 500,000 units per a quarter, according to Bloomberg\'s article.
Pixels, Inc. has released PiXELS 3D v4.0, the fourth incarnation of its animation software. The new OS X native application has a new customizable interface and new plug-in API developed around its Open3D architecture, which provides direct access to every core function. Plug-ins can now be interactive and dynamic, providing real-time feedback and custom UI widgets with direct manipulation capabilities.
Aspyr Media is now shipping Otto Matic, an action adventure game from Pangea Software, the creators of Bugdom Cro-Mag Rally and Nanosaur. The gameplay and visual style is inspired by 1930\'s and 1950\'s sci-fi movies: \"As a sci-fi intergallactic robot named Otto Matic, you must go from planet to planet battling aliens and prevent the humans from being abducted, using cool gadgets and special abilities.\" It is still available for pre-order for $35. [demo1, demo2]
Roxio has signed a definitive agreement to acquire all of the outstanding shares of MGI Software for nearly $33 million. MGI develops and sels photo and video editing software for the Windows-computers.
OSOpinion author Kelly McNeill has produced an editorial speculating on Apple\'s purported \"Gigawire\" project, for which the company has filed a trademark application. Apple\'s application says the device is in some regard related to \"computers, telecommunications equipment and devices, or computer peripheral devices.\" McNeill opines that the device could be anything from an enhanced clustering scheme, to a digital audio/video transmission tool.
Afternoon tech news: AT&T has dropped its $307 million bid for Excite@Home, but promises to complete the transfer of its customers to its network by Friday (with over 80 percent of the transition excepted to be complete by today); Three new studies suggest that shipments of Bluetooth, the short-range wireless networking standard, will push above 5 million this year, with some estimates topping 13 million units; IBM says it has altered the design of a transistor to allow twice the amount of current to flow through it, allowing for smaller, faster semiconductors.
Initio, a manufacturer of I/O expansion cards and other storage products, has announced a collaborative agreement with NEC for the development of new FireWire products. The first fruits of the companies\' efforts will be a set of IEEE 1394 integrated circuits to be introduced in early 2002, including a 1394-to-UDMA100 solution.
Canto has released the QXP AssetStore, a new option for all Cumulus 5 Editions that can archive and manage individual pages of a QuarkXPress document as well as the entire document. User can use use Canto 5 search to search for the text of a cataloged QuarkXPress document. It is available German, English, French and Japanese user interfaces and requires QuarkXPress to be installed. It is available for free without batch cataloging functionality ($400).
MenuCalendar 1.1a, a small freeware utility that adds handy calender to to the menubar, fixes a bug with OS X.
Macromedia yesterday announced its free Dreamweaver 4 Jump Start Kit, which includes video tutorials, book excerpts, templates, and product extensions as well as printable book excerpts from popular Dreamweaver and Fireworks resources, 10 customizable templates, and 25 of the most relevant extensions for new users.
Kanex Group has introduced QuickPopup, which allows users to exchange popup messages local-area networks (LANs) without connecting to the Internet. Pricing starts at $15 per copy. [Classic, Carbon]
e.Digital today introduced the Treo 10, an iPod-like music device for storing and playing MP3s. The $250 pocket-sized device weighs only 9.9 oz and features an 10GB IBM Travelstar drive (for storing up to 3,000 songs), a LCD for browsing/playing songs, a USB interface, a Lithium-Ion battery (up to six hours of playback), and MXP Music Explorer software for organizing and transferring music/data files.
MAKI Enterprise has updated its email client, Magellan PRO 1.0.2, releasing a Carbonized version for OS X, adding a new quick help section, and a new spam dictionary. This $80 Pro version features the ability to automatically create reply messages, categorize spam mail (based on text analysis), and forward certain messages to pagers/cellular phones.
The Washington Post notes Apple \"contrarian style\" with its foray into consumer electronics with the iPod and its retail strategy \"Apple Computer Inc. in recent months has had an entirely different idea about how to weather the economic downturn that has prompted its competitors to retrench and hunker down.\"
ConceptDraw Mindmap utilizes \"Mind Mapping technology to organize, structure and present ideas, increase productivity and efficiency of your work and make creative thinking and planning easy and fast.\" The $100 application features brainstorming mode, powerful HTML export, support for popular graphic formats, outline import and export and 40 specialized libraries with 1300 pre-drawn objects. A $150 \"Pro\" version includes PowerPoint import/export, support for multi-page documents and customizable libraries.
Apple VP Phil Schiller will deliver a keynote at today at DV Expo in Los Angeles at 2:00 pm. One reader writes about Apple\'s upcoming Final Cut Pro 3 product announcement, which we have confirmed: \"Either I was not paying attention or there is a new version of Final Cut Pro coming tomorrow. I was at LA Convention Center for DV Expo Setup today (Monday) and saw signs for FCP3. Thought you guys should know. [updated]
CE Software has posted an update to its keyboard automation utility, QuicKeys X 1.0.1, which includes a new application switching options, a new \"insert text\" option for faster text insertion, improved AppleScript playback, and other enhancements.
Steve Becker has released InfoManager 2.1, a clipboard enhancement utility that \"greatly expands the power of the Mac Clipboard\" that can be used to create and organize notes and includes tools for on-the-fly editing of text and searching text files/clippings as well as editing/printing the contents of clippings files. Version 2.1 of the $50 includes support for Netscape 6 and better support for AOL 5.0.
Portraits & Prints 1.02, a personal photo studio for OS X, adds support for extended text object attributes (color, opacity and typestyle), user editable text on templates, more accurate on-screen display of template objects, and other bug fixes. It also released Portraits & Prints Template Maker, a $10 utility that can generate custom layouts for Portraits & Prints. it is being bundled for free with the purchase of Portraits & Prints 1.02 ($20) through January 4, 2002.
Netscape Communicator 4.77 \"could allow a local attacker to obtain passwords while viewing arbitrary Web pages. While viewing a Web page containing password fields using Netscape, a local attacker can print the page to obtain the password in plaintext,\" according to an Internet Security Systems\' report.
4D today announced 4D WebSTAR 5.0.1, the first update to 4D WebSTAR Server Suite V. It offers a built-in update notification feature, 4D Connect plug-in, performance boosts to the HTTP server, FTP server and Search plug-in, a CGI version of PHP 4.06, and other improvements.
Unlined Charcoal, one of the first themes available for OSX, has finally been updated for use with OS x 10.1.
Medea has announced immediate shipment of its VideoRaid RTR and VideoRaid RTRX storage solutions, which are currently being demonstrated at the DV Expo underway in Los Angeles. Both disk arrays include an Ultra160 SCSI interface that enables the desktop models to sustain a data transfer rate of up to 130 MB/second. The 5-drive VideoRaid RTR is available in 160 GB, 240 GB and 300 GB capacities with list prices starting at $3,999. VideoRaid RTRX is available in 5 and 10-drive configurations with capacities of 160 GB, 240 GB, 300 GB, 320 GB, 480 GB and 600 GB. List prices on VideoRaid RTRX start at $4,599.
Now AAPL Stock: 100.35 ( -0.06 )
Trade-up program expands in Europe
Smartphone users in France, Italy, and Spain will have until at least August of this year to trade in old iPhone, Windows Phone, or Android models at Apple Stores, and put the reward towards a new iPhone -- thanks to an expansion of Apple's trade-in program into those countries. The money given for the trade-in must be applied towards a new iPhone on a two-year payment plane, and traders must qualify under a credit check as part of the program. Interested customers can apply for the trade-in at their nearest Apple Store. http://bit.ly/1qPsldD
NBCUniversal adds Bravo, Syfy, E! to Apple TV
NBCUniversal has launched three new apps channels for Apple TV users. Bravo Now, Syfy Now and E! Now brings users access full seasons of current and past episodes of most of NBCUniversal's catalog. The Bravo Now app includes shows like "The Real Housewives of New York Cit," "Below Deck Mediterranean," comedy "Odd Mom Out" and "Top Chef." The Syfy Now app offers up shows like "The Magicians," thriller "12 Monkeys" and the reality show "Face Off." The E! Now app serves up shows like "Keeping Up with the Kardashians," "Botched," "#RichKids of Beverly Hills," Caitlyn Jenner's "I Am Cait," and "WAGS." While some content is free, most content requires users to authenticate via their cable satellite or telco TV provider. http://bit.ly/20K4Pea
Apple rolls out Arabic version of Apple.com
Apple has rolled out a new version of its Apple.com website for Arabic language users in the United Arab Emirates. The site utilizes a right-to-left reading format where it has been updated, although the upgrade is still in progress with a number of page links still in the original English language left-to-right format. Of particular note is that the site debuts an all-new custom Arabic font created by the Tarek Atrissi Design agency, giving it a highly contemporary look and feel. The new support for Arabic on its host website follows the introduction of full support for right-to-left languages in iOS 9, and the addition of Arabic support to Siri late last year. http://apple.co/20JHGIM
Adobe previews Photoshop content-aware crop
Adobe has previewed a new 'content-aware crop' feature from the next version of its Photoshop CC. The new feature is similar to its 'content-aware fill' from the current version of Photoshop CC, and potentially saves users time when cropping photos in a way that might otherwise leave blank white space in the frame. Adobe's 'content-aware' tech automatically assesses the blank space and seamlessly fills the blank space with the nearest related content in the space when a photo is expanded or rotated without the need to manually clone that part of the image. The feature allows users to move a horizon by adding more sky or ground, change the aspect ratio by adding content around the edges of the image and fill in the corners of an image when rotated during a crop. Adobe says the feature is coming soon and will be automatically available to Creative Cloud subscribers. http://adobe.ly/20JDFEu
Markzware updates Q2ID for QuarkXPress 12 files
Graphic design file conversion tool maker Markzware has launched a new version of its Q2ID tool. The InDesign plugin enables users to open QuarkXPress files within a new InDesign (INDD) document, without rebuilding the QXP document from scratch -- the new version includes support for QuarkXPress 12 files. Q2ID Subscription members can download the new version as part of their annual plan. A single-user can purchase the plugin for $200, with other licensing options available. http://bit.ly/1Z4dS9t
PopChar X 7.5 arrives
Ergonis Software has released PopChar X 7.5, an improved version of the company's tool for finding and inserting special characters and exploring fonts. PopChar X 7.5 adds support for combined emojis in the Apple Color Emoji font, enhances the "Font Info" view, and adds many further enhancements that improve overall speed and stability. PopChar X 7.5 retails for â‚¬30 ($34), and is free for anyone who owns a license for PopChar X 7 or purchased a license for PopChar X 6 on or after March 1, 2014 [4.5MB]
Safari Technology Preview release 5 arrives