Apple has posted an official MacWorld Expo San Francisco webcast page, which indicates that Macintosh enthusiasts will be able to \"tune-in\" to Steve Jobs\' keynote address on January 7 at 9am PT via QuickTime. \"It\'s an event you won\'t want to miss.\"
Graphics software developer Fifth Wave today announced the availability of Convert version 1.3.3. Convert is an in-depth tool for calculations and conversions on the Macintosh. 40 different conversion categories allow for \"thousands of conversion possibilities,\" according to the developer. Version 1.3.3 adds a number of improvements including PowerPC and 68K native code, new conversion factors for the Volume, Moment of Inertia, and Mass categories. Convert is available for $15 through Kagi.
Grammatica 3.07, the bilingual grammar and spelling utility, has been released. The update improves French checking and includes a new and direct access to the FR, ENG, and FR-ENG Ultralingua dictionairies; price for the full version is $45.
Mallet and Bare has released Erase the Trail 1.2, the hard drive management tool, for Mac OS 9. The utility allows batch change of creator codes, deletion, creation, and management of invisible files, and backup of the entire drive with the click of a button. Erase the Trail\'s cost is $7, but discounts will be given on later versions for registered users.
MOTU today announced a public beta of its USB MIDI driver for all MOTU MIDI interfaces, including the 2x2 FastLane-USB, 4x6 micro express-USB, 8x8 MIDI Express XT-USB and the 8x8 MIDI Timepiece AV-USB interface/universal synchronizer. The MOTU USB driver leverages OS X\'s new \'CoreMIDI\' architecture, making \"all MOTU USB MIDI interfaces compatible with all Macintosh software that supports standard Mac OS X MIDI drivers. \"
The Omni Group is shipping OmniOutliner v1.2, a cocoa application that can make outlines and lists in Mac OS X. New in this version is the ability to export to plain text, multiple columns, document-wide stylesheets, multiple bug fixes and numerous interface enhancements. A free trial version is available; the full version is $21.
Word Translator 4.5 brings OS X compatibility to the application that can translate English words into 14 other languages. The $40 shareware integrates with other applications, has user-modifiable dictionaries and can accept very large dictionaries-- some up to 400,000 words. A trial version is avaialbe that will expire after \"a few weeks\" of usage.
ntop v2.0, a Unix tool that generates detailed network usage reports, has been released. ntop works with Mac OS X servers and is compatible with several protocols including AppleTalk. The ntop source code is available to the public.
TheStreet.com has posted a piece dubbed \"Sweet Exec Deals Sour Apple\'s Image\" in which columnist Glenn Curtis criticizes Apple\'s executive compensation. Curtis says he\'s \"not always convinced that the company has the common shareholder\'s best interest at heart,\" pointing out a $500,000 signing bonus for Timothy Cook, Senior Vice President, Worldwide Sales Service and support, and hefty stock option awards.
A MacNN reader writes \"DV Pressroom has an interesting \'Dual Duel\' article in which a PM G4 800 DP got summarily clobbered by multi-processor Wintel peers in a digital video editing shootout. Not a happy story for us Mac faithful, but not the complete story, either.\"
Morning tech news: AOL\'s global subscriber base has topped 33 million; CD prices are set to fall due in part to increased availability of music online; and The FCC granted Boeing a license for the aircraft manufacturer\'s Connexion service, which will let passengers transmit and receive broadband data in flight.
David Pogue\'s latest New York Times column highlights OS X and the iPod as \"some of the year\'s most notable products.\"
Cisco recently posted updated Aironet 2.0 drivers for its line of wireless PCI/PC card adpaters. Version 2.0 contains new OS X drivers as well the previous release of Mac OS 9 drivers; James Nenneman provided some feedback: \"I emailed you last week about the drivers that were soon to be posted for Aironet Cards. I downloaded them within an hour of their being posted. The 2.0 version of the driver software for OS X does not work. I have tested it with Powerbook G4s and G3s running anything from 10.1 to 10.1.2. It does not work. ;-( What is more disappointing is that when installed on OS 9 the driver and utility package are still the older 1.02. I have attempted to contact Cisco, but with no luck.\"
Now AAPL Stock: 94.02 ( -2.58 )
Remote S for Tesla Apple Watch app drives car out
Developer Allen Wong has created the Remote S for Tesla app, which can be used to remotely activate the Model S electric car via an Apple Watch, and drive it a short distance. Aside from providing data about the car and some basic function controls, the unofficial app uses the manufacturer's Summon command to allow the car to turn on, exit the garage, and park near to the user's location. The app is available to purchase from the App Store for $10. http://apple.co/1PprF4t
Seagate 3TB unreliability suit expands
The Seagate 3TB class-action hard drive lawsuit has been expanded to more devices. The expanded suit, filed today, now includes Seagate's Barracuda 3TB Hard Disk Drive, Desktop HDD 3TB, Backup Plus 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, GoFlex 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, or any other Seagate hard drive with model number ST3000DM001. The law firm, Hagens Berman, is seeking information from consumers such as time in service, purchase price, and the nature of any drive received in return from Seagate as a replacement for a failed unit. http://bit.ly/1Pc34Cq
BlackBerry Canada, Florida hit with layoffs
The BlackBerry campus has reportedly been wracked with layoffs. Sources familiar with the company's Waterloo office staffing claim that close to 35 percent of the local workforce has been laid off, with the deepest cuts being made in the BlackBerry 10 OS and hardware teams. Additionally, the state of Florida has been officially notified that the company's Sunrise facility will see 75 people fired. Enthusiast site Mobilesyrup puts the layoffs at around 1000 total. http://bit.ly/1Pc1Rep
Instagram tests multiple account support for iOS
Instagram is trialling support for multiple accounts in its iPhone app with a small number of users. The Facebook-owned photo sharing service confirmed the reports of the tests to TechCrunch, which will allow a single user to manage more than a single account within the app, transferring between two or three accounts with a few taps. It is unclear when the feature will roll out to the public, but it has previously tested it with the Android version of the app since November. http://tcrn.ch/1SPKEKh
Foxconn CEO declares Sharp deal near done
The Foxconn bid for Sharp is allegedly only waiting on specific details of the deal. Foxconn CEO Terry Gou has declared that his company has privileged negotiation rights for the Apple iPhone screen supplier, saying that "we have a consensus, the rest is a process ... I don't see a problem completing this process." Gou hopes the deal, worth up to $5.6 billion, will be formalized by the end of February. http://reut.rs/1SPEQjN
MIT demoes 'Eyeriss' AI chip for mobile
At the International Solid State Circuits Conference in San Francisco this week, MIT researchers presented a new chip designed specifically to implement neural networks. The researchers claim that "Eyeriss" is 10 times as efficient as a mobile GPU, so it could enable mobile devices to run artificial-intelligence algorithms such as Siri or Cortana, rather than uploading all data to a remote server for processing. http://bit.ly/1TISJBe
Pocket for iOS adds readability settings
Offline reader iOS app Pocket has updated, with reader-friendly changes. With the new revision, premium subscribers can adjust character spacing, and choose from eight new fonts including one that makes it easier for sufferers of dyslexia to read saved content. The app itself is free, with a premium subscription available for $5 a month, or $45 a year. http://apple.co/1KuILBl