Alessandro Levi Montalcini has posted a public beta of his OS X-compatible USB Overdrive X 10.0.0b1. The popular mouse and joystick driver currently only supports mouse devices (and is also likely to be the same codebase used by Microsoft for its Intellipoint mouse drivers). Alessandro provided some details on licensing and upgrades for the $20 shareware: \"The final version of the USB Overdrive X will soon be distributed as shareware through Kagi. Users of the Mac OS 9 version who registered after the release of Mac OS X are entitled to a free upgrade using the same code they already received. All new registrations cover both the Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X versions. Users who registered before the release of Mac OS X can get a special price for the upgrade to the new Mac OS X version. All registered users of the ALM Share package will receive a free registration for the Mac OS X version upon request.\"
Todd Orner writes about a (yet unconfirmed) report about the closing of PAR Technologies: \"I have been a loyal PAR Technologies customer RAM, iRez cams, etc. (my purchases have been primarily RAM) for almost six years. I received an EMail from a former PAR employee yesterday telling me that PAR closed t
Swaystairs Software has released RumorMill 1.3.2, a maintenance release to its NNTP new server. This update is free to registered 1.3 users and incorporates several fixes and minor enhancements, including daily and weekly backups for preferences, and the option to add articles to the database from disk files. It is $90 for commercial use and $35 for private or educational licenses.
Macromedia has released Flash Player 6 public beta for Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X. Macromedia encourages developers to test current content with the new player, to ensure compatibility. A \'Frequently Asked Questions\' page is available for more information. [Classic, Carbon]
According to an osOpinion editorial, Mac gaming may be rebounding. \"Thanks to some attention from Steve Jobs and exclusive deals with Nvidia, Apple has turned the corner with some key developers and has delivered systems with the horsepower necessary to drive speed-thirsty entertainment titles. Developers like MacPlay, which has worked to bring top game titles to Mac OS X, also are joining the fray. [..] Apple has made significant improvements at both the consumer and professional ends of its product spectrum.\"
O\'Reilly Network founder/writer Tim O\'Reilly, has posted an article noting Apple\'s presence at the O\'Reilly Bioinformatics Conference. \"They provided a room full of sleek hardware for the Bioinformatics Hackathon that preceded the conference, which was then used for the terminal room during the conference, and announced high performance enhancements to BLAST on OS X.\" When Mr. O\'Reilly asked speaker Ewan Birney of the BioPerl project about his reaction to Apple\'s support of the \'hackathon,\' Birney reportedly \"held up his PC laptop, and said \'Bugger all! I should have bought a Mac!\'\" [See: photo gallery]
MacNN reader Scott Seller shares with us an email from Formac regarding Mac OS X support of its ProFormace video Card.
The LA Times has posted an interview in this week\'s Technology section with Trent Reznor of rock band Nine Inch Nails. Reznor praises Apple and calls the iPod his favorite new \'tech toy.\' The audio and video for a recent live video DVD were edited entirely on Apple computers, according to the interview. Reznor also uses a Power Mac G4 at home: \"I\'ve got [an Apple] G4 tower. It\'s about 6 months old. And I have a mini sort of writing rig [an Apple G4 with a DVD burner]\"
TrashLater v2.1, a set of two applications, is now available. The applications work in conjunction with eachother to provide timed, automatic deletion of folders such as internet cache, download folders, and backup folders.
CNN/Money reports that the European regulators have approved the planned acquisition of Compaq Computer by Hewlett Packard. c|net has posted a News.com video with HP CEO Carly Fiorina saying the HP-Compaq merger will \"advance Linux\" (see related article); Walter Hewlett remains strongly opposed to the merger.
To follow-up a story we have been covering for the past few weeks, The Bank of America has informed Macintosh customers that effective February 11 they will no loner support online banking with the Macintosh version of Quicken citing changes in their online banking platform and \"economic reasons.\" Intuit has informed MacNN that Quicken for Mac currently connects to over 1,000 financial institutions. Officials told MacNN that Bank of America is \"looking into\" possible continued support for Mac Quicken users.
MacSoft\'s Website says it will release Stronghold, a castle-building strategy game, in May of this year; Beach Head 2002, a war simulation game, in March; and Master of Orion 3, the sequel to the popular turn-based galactic strategy game, in June (as noted by IMG).
About 120 middle school students at Lindsay Middle School have received an iBook as part of a \"pilot program that Hampton City Schools sees as the future in educating not only its students but their parents and other people in the community.\" Students will be able to take home the laptop after the parents attend a training session.
Forbes.com has an article on the \"relatively quiet product announcement\" of gigahertz Power Macs, noting that \"despite all the credit that the much-hyped iMac line gets for turning Apple\'s fortunes around, the Power Mac line is Apple\'s moneymaker, consistently outpacing all the other product categories in terms of revenue. Apple sold 212,000 Power Mac G4s last quarter, totaling $366 million in sales, compared with 233,000 iMacs and $204 million for the same period.\"
Bare Bones Software today released BBEdit 6.5.2, a maintenance release to its HTML and text editor. This update incorporates various enhancements, interface refinements, and fixes for reported issues.
A new Beta of Omni Group\'s diagramming application, OmniGraffle 2.0b7, includes improvements on stability, some bug fixes, and numerous tweaks, including an \"improved AppleScript support that goes beyond just mere AppleScript support.\"
Matt Bentley sent us a note on Quicken X issues with Fleet Bank, following yesterday\'s report on Bank of America\'s discontinuation of Quicken support.
Westlake has released UT X Preview 2, an update to the popular game. The \"early pre-release\" (intended for the \"brave\") fixes a major bug that caused a problem for many users and requires that you have either UT version 436 or UT Game of the Year installed (or a previous UT X Preview).
Rainer Brockerhoff has released XRay 1.0b7, an update to his file/folder information utility for OS X. It more detailed view of files, folders, applications and volumes, allows users to change permissions, type/creator/extension, and other features. It offers an integrated file browser and some performance improvements.
HELIOS Software is now shipping its server software for Apple\'s Mac OS X, including EtherShare 2.6, a high performance server for Mac clients (and its PCShare 3.0 counterpart); EtherShare OPI 2.1, a server-based OPI, including image replacement with color separation and proof printing support; PDF Handshake 2.0 for PDF print services, incuding PDF OPI and imposition, a Create PDF Server, and Internet Printing; and Print Preview 1.1 for last minute proofing. All products offer an easy-to-use installer as wel as native OS X and Mac OS 9.x server administration for management of users, volumes, printers, ColorSync, and other server administration tasks.
MacNN Reader Alvin Mok notes that Apple has posted the new developer notes for both the new G4 iMacs and the speed-bumped Power Mac G4 and notes a few interesting points about the new iMac.
Qualcomm has posted a new beta of Eudora 5.1b20 for OS X, ofering nearly a dozen fixes and enhancements.
Vista Systems has released RenderBoy v2.3.0, an update to the shareware ($40) solid modeler and ray-tracing renderer. It lets users easily model and render photo-realistic 3D images and animations, complete with shadows, reflections, refractions, textures, and more. Version 2.3 includes DXF file import for importing and rendering more complex geometries.
Felt Tip Software has released Sound Studio 2.0, an update to its digital audio editing and recording application, bringing new effects (Chorus, Flanger, EQ, etc.), new filters (graphic EQ with 3, 10, and 30-band controls), a new mix option for clipboard audio, a new sound recording and playback engine, auto start/stop recording for VOX-style and timed-length recording, and other enhancements. Upgrades to the $50 application are $20. A 14-day demo is available.
Chad Schexnayder writes about a fix for problems when using the Beta version of the Palm desktop software for OS X.
eWeek columnist Mathew Rothenberg writes that the new speed-bumped Power Macs \"seem particularly minor in comparison with the big things Mac insiders say Apple has in store for its professional systems. Multiple eyewitnesses insist that Apple is far along in the development of new towers that already offer clock speeds in the neighborhood of 1.6GHz and triple the performance of the current systems\' 133MHz system bus....The as-yet-unannounced Macs are also reported to include some significant improvements to I/O, possibly including new versions of FireWire and USB; DDR RAM in place of the current SDRAM; and a faster interface to hard drives.\"
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 €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