Apple has apparently halted support for the SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) protocol previously available to Mac.com email users, according to a MacNN reader. Users attempting to connect with SSL login enabled in their email client have found themselves unable to connect to the Mac.com mail servers. Apple has not informed users of any permanent change; it remains unclear if this is due to technical difficulties.
DesiSoft Systems today released an entertaining software utility that automatically generates a \"Star Wars\" character name based on user-inputted personal information. DSS Name Convoluter v1.0 is based on the alleged method Star Wars creator George Lucas used in naming characters from the popular movie series.
WebDesign v1.5.3 is a maintenance update to the the $30 Web development package from Rage Software. WebDesign features a robust WYSIWYG design environment, but also offers basic direct HTML editing. This release corrects a bug that lead to problems when previewing documents with a Web browser. [Classic, OSX]
ComputerUser notes that Mac OS X could now be a better alternative for desktop Linux users, because of the easy-to-use interface and powerful Unix underpinnings. \"Add the power and flexibility of Unix to the Macintosh user experience and you have a powerful combination, one that could spell trouble for Linux.\"
Constrictor v2.1 is a screen snapshot utility for Mac OS X that provides users with a \"moveable, resizeable frame which floats over all other windows.\" It also allows users to crop and resize the images within the application; the shareware price is $10.
A MacNN reader notes that Apple no longer requires users to login to view the Knowledge Database. \"You can once again search the KBase without having to register with Apple. If you wish to personalize your support page, you would still need the Apple ID.\"
Fidelity Media has released MegaSeg v2.1 Beta 14, its DJ music mixing software for Mac OS 9 & X. Improvements include better keyboard shortcuts, bug fixes and improved speed; the price is $150, but a demo is available.
CharView 1.4.1 is another freeware application that displays all printing characters of a selected font: \"With this application you can type character you can\'t even dream to get from keyboard! [It] shows all symbols of selected font, and one character zoomed for best view.\"
FUNDimensions 4.0 is a new Carbonized version of the fundraising software. The database application is designed for small non-profits and schools, managing the entire fundraising process. It also adds 169 new reports, including 109 new charts. Upgrades are free for purchases within the last year and $290 for owners of v3.5. Both single-user ($1,830) and client-server editions ($230 per user) are available.
Farah Al-Essa notes that Apple still has yet to provide Arabic language support for OS X: \"Any information on Arabic Language support on MacOS X 10.1. Documentation says that the OS is multilingual but in reality it doesnt support Arabic yet. [it] does not support browsing the Arab web.. nor read and compose Arab documents. Pity that 250 million Arabs are missing out on the best OS ever.\" Update: Several readers note that Apple has promised full Arabic (and other language) support in \"Jaguar.\"
Archos Cesar CDRW/MPM claims to be \"world\'s smallest and most portable CD writer.\" The device, introduced today by Archos Technology, is just slightly larger than a CD itself and offers a 8x8x24x CD-RW mechanism (limited with USB 1.1 interface). It is available with a choice of swappable interfaces, including USB 1.1, USB 2.0, FireWire, or PC Card. The unit is bus-powered and weighs only 14.5-oz. It is $250 and is bundled with a single interface cable, mastering software, and a 5V DC adapter.
PocketBackup 1.1 improves reliability, and fixes a number of bugs to the backup management system. It also adds the ability to split source files into multiple parts and localization support. The $20 shareware offers a three-step backup process, stores backup to standard disk images (dmg) or burned to standard CDs, auto mounting of AppleTalk/network drives, timed backups, and English/French/German versions.
Forbes.com, discussing recent product upgrades by Apple, speculates on the possibility of a new digital device announcement at Macworld Expo in July: \"Given Apple\'s early lead in wireless networking using the Wi-Fi standard, it wouldn\'t be much of a stretch to see Apple creating what is essentially a touch-sensitive screen that can display the contents of any computer it is connected to... [Apple] certainly has something truly noteworthy up its sleeve for July that is not necessarily a new computer per se..\"
MacPlay today announced that it has reached agreement with Crave Entertainment to bring 3 of its top titles to the Mac, including Freedom Force, an RPG which is due out for OS X in the Fall.
Macrobyte Resources has released Conversant 1.0b1, a flexible web application development platform, with an emphasis on groupware applications such as Intranets, project work groups and collaborative learning environments. It provides integration of web, email, and news-based (NNTP) collaboration as well as membership management, discussion groups, news sites and weblogs, a flexible search engine, database customization, and other features. It runs on OS X and Mac OS 9 on top of the UserLand Frontier or Radio UserLand server environments.
Tascam has posted new OS X drivers for its USB-based audio interface controller: US-428 v3.1.
Verbatim is now shipping DataLifePlus 40x-certified CD-R discs that can burn a full 700MB of data or 80 minutes of music in about two minutes. The media features Verbatim\'s innovative \"Super Azo\" recording dye\" which it says is a revolution in recording layer technology.
Cycling \'74\'s Pluggo 3 is a collection of more than one hundred audio plug-ins that work with Mac OS sequencers and audio applications that support Steinberg\'s VST plug-in format, the MOTU Audio System (MAS) format used by Digital Performer, and Digidesign\'s RTAS plug-in format. The real-time interactive audio processing, modulation, and synthesis environment includes more than a dozen effects categories. It is a $60 upgrade to the $200 application.
The QuickTime-based music authoring application easy beat 1.5, now distributed by macility software, requires a new license key, but is free for all owners of previous versions. The $90 software fixes several bugs and is compatible with the forthcoming QuickTime 6 upgrade.
Apple UK\'s strategy to increase its market share by focusing on retail sales is showing signs of success, according to a MacUser UK report, which cites market research company IDC numbers that show a \"massive 21.2 per cent year-on-year growth in the company\'s unit sales. This means Apple\'s share of the UK PC market in the first quarter of 2002 jumped to 3.2 per cent, compared with 2.5 per cent last year.\"
Apple has cancelled customer orders for D-Link\'s USB Bluetooth adaptor via the Apple Store and has notified customers that the part has been \"delayed indefinitely,\" according to MacUser UK, which reports that customers were notified of the cancellation by email in mid-May. The device began shipping in April, but demand has outstripped availability.
Samsung this month announced its new TFT-LCD product line which offers high-performance, low-cost 19-inch high-resolution SXGA and UXGA TFT-LCDs and six 17-inch TFT-LCDs for TFT-monitor and TV applications as well as 2 new high-brightness 17-inch CRT monitors.
Apple Network Assistant 4.0.5 (ANAT), an update to Apple\'s instructional and a desktop management tool, improves performance and reliability for copies performed via the Copy Items and Copy Hard Disk commands. It offers system administrators the ability to Observe/Control other Macs, share screens with multiple Macs, or lock the screen of a specific or all Macs in the computer room.
Rick Johnson\'s $15 shareware NotePod 1.1 is a personal note manager for organizing notes with reminders and links to URLs and files. It adds the ability to rearrange notes in the hierarchical list by dragging them, the note editor is now compatible with SpellTools, plus other improvements. [Classic, OSX]
Apple executives have filed with securities regulators to sell about $25 million in stock so far this month, including a new filings by three executives, according to a Reuters report--totalling more than 1 million shares or about 0.29 percent of Apple\'s 366 million diluted shares outstanding as of March 31.
JobOrder 10.1 provides functions scheduling, estimating, job costing, project management and accounting operations. Version 10.1 brings significant improvements to JobOrder Internet and other areas including, activity efficiencies for architecture, expense distribution and credit card distribution, invoice analysis report enhancements, notification rules for email reminders to clients, PERT charts, and other enhancements. Pricing starts at $1,500.
Kebawe\'s AutoCat 3.0.5, a $15 disks cataloger available for Mac OS 9 and OS X, fixes a bug that prevented some subfolders to be cataloged under Mac OS 9.
Intelli Innovations has released IntelliMerge 2.2.1, an update to its e-mail merge software. It now includes automatic connection and transaction timeout handling as well as improved import from text file functions. [Classic, OSX]
Eyelid: Privacy for Timbuktu, a $20 shareware utility, listens for you to make a control connection via Netopia\'s Timbuktu remote control software and dims your local screen to \"protect it from prying eyes. With Eyelid you can connect to your work machine and check your email or work without fear of being observed by passers by.\" [Classic, OSX]
Now AAPL Stock: 93.59 ( + 1.55 )
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE
French show carries on with iPhones
Following a prolonged power loss in a French TV studio, the crew was able to use a combination of limited studio lighting and a number of iPhones to continue taping the Saturday episode of talk show On n'est pas couché ("We're Still Awake"), using the resulting footage in the first edited episode. The Plus-model iPhones used for the impromptu shoot completion were either iPhone 6 Plusses (which shoot in 1080p) or 6s Plus models (which can shoot in 4K). The decision to use the iPhones to complete the show was made after a power outage at France 2's studio stretched to more than three hours. http://bit.ly/299wqDt
Scrivener for iOS to arrive in late July
For some long-time Scrivener users, to quote Paul Simon, "these are the days of miracle and wonders." As it marks its 10th anniversary in business, developer Keith Blount has announced that the long-awaited iOS version of his creative-writing tool Scrivener is to be submitted to the App Store, following strong praise from beta-testers. The program, expected in late July, will sell for $20 and work with both the iPad and iPhone. When we interviewed Blount last January, he added that Scrivener 3 for Mac would follow along shorty afterwards. http://bit.ly/2901XLE
WhatsApp now handles over 100M calls daily
WhatsApp is celebrating that it is being used for over 100 million calls every day. In a brief notice, the Facebook-owned messaging platform advises the voice-calling feature it rolled out to its users last year now deals with an average of over 1,100 calls initiated per second. Earlier this year, it increased the security of its calls and other messages, by introducing end-to-end encryption on all platforms. http://bit.ly/292HqCX
Adele's '25' album now streaming
Recording artist Adele has "pulled a Kanye" after saying that her current album "25" would not be available for streaming. The seven-month-old record, which has yielded a number of hit singles, is now available for streaming on all the major streaming services, such as Apple Music and Spotify, as of today in most major markets, with worldwide distribution to come. Reportedly, the singer had demanded streaming be limited to paid subscribers -- a condition that has hurt some streamers with artists, who aren't paid royalties for free or trial listens . Apple pays performers its normal royalty rates during its free trial, avoiding the issue -- and having repeated success in both signing up exclusives and placing those exclusives into the top of the charts. http://ti.me/28U7NOu
SanDisk iXpand case has battery, storage
A new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s case from SanDisk appears to be the "holy grail" of accessories: a stylish and protective case that offers both extra storage as well as the option of extra battery power as well. The iXpand Memory case offers either 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB of additional storage incorporated into the case, and an optional add-on battery pack (sold separately) adds up to an extra day or more of charge. Through the associated iXpand app, camera photos and videos can be automatically stored on the extra storage, optionally password-protected, The cost for the case is (in order of storage capacity) $60, $100, and $130. The battery pack's release data has not yet been announced, but the add-on should retail for an additional $30. http://bit.ly/291epHu