Leading FireWire (IEEE 1394) developers and supporters gathered at last week\'s sixth annual 1394 Developers\' Conference to showcase new products. Apple touted its iPhoto software by demonstrating compatibility with Nikon\'s DI still camera. In addition to veteran FireWire developers, newcomers like FireMedia Communication unveiled new products. Microsoft demoed the first PC speakers running 1394-based audio as part of its Hybrid Home Network; FireMedia showed a new wireless video and data network, transmitting real-time video at more than 30 Megabits/second.
Evening tech news: Japan leads the world with the most people accessing the Internet through mobile phones, a government report released today indicates (providers like EarthLink offer North American cell phone email access); Dell is giving away $50,000 to a lucky customer each day this month, with the hope of boosting back-to-school sales; the Xbox Linux Project seeks to find a \"simple and completely legal\" way of running Linux on the Xbox gaming machine, with rewards of up to $200,000; shipments of liquid crystal display monitors fell this quarter -- despite a good first quarter -- as a result of supply problems.
An Apple Knowledge Base document explains that users cannot use the power button on the front of an Apple display to turn on an Xserve. Instead users are advised to use the button on the front of the server. Another document outlines the steps necessary to avoid unwanted LCD screen dimming on machines running Mac OS X 10.1.5 as a result of Energy Saver enhancements. Finally, Apple has posted standalone versions of iMac Update 1.0 and Security Update July 2002 for Mac OS X
PocketDock 2.5 adds the ability to \'lock\' or child proof a dock, updates the skin system, adds 10 new skins, and fixes a number of other minor bugs. The shareware launcher utility offers the ability to organize your applications, documents, web links and email addresses.
Asar has released Hogwasher 3.0, a Carbonized version of its advanced newsgroup utility. Version 3.0 adds OS X compatibility, optional Quartz anti-aliased text rendering in list views under OS X, long file name support under OS X, and built-in yEnc encoding and decoding support. Other features include filtering, scheduling, thread tree display, email and image viewing support, and a full address book. A 60-day trial of the $50 Usenet utility is available online. Upgrades from previous versions are $25.
Ridge 1.0 is a shareware ($10) internet connection viewer that offers the ability to measure your Internet speed, a graphical representation of data transfer over the past 60 seconds, packet hexadecimal dump and parsing for PPP/IP/TCP/UDP packets, and other features.
Apple is expected to launch a new retail store in Indianapolis at the Crossing Mall. Residents of the city note that the store will address a lack of Macintosh retailers in the area. Apple will also debut its much-anticipated New York City store, Apple Store SoHo, at this month\'s Macworld Expo NY with the Grand Opening scheduled for Thursday, July 18th.
Apple today posted two new television advertisements on its Web site, as a part of its Real People advertising campaign. Long-time PC user Juan Proano describes in a TV spot his recent switch to the Mac platform; magazine publisher David Carey notes that Microsoft and Lotus suites work well on his Macintosh.
NYRO Technix has announced a beta version of NXRAID, a software-based RAID 5 product for Mac OS X. RAID 5 provides data striping (spreading out blocks of each file across multiple disks) and stripe error correction information using 3 or more disk drives. Interested beta testers email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ambrosia software today announced that pop-pop, its fast-paced action game title, will be released at the MacWorld/NYC. The shareware title, described as \"a wild fusion of Arkanoid and Street Fighter, with a good spot of the PowerPuff girls thrown in for good measure,\" supports both single/multi-player game modes and has support for the popular GameRanger online gaming service. (Pricing for the title has not been announced.)
Paste Without Style! 2.0 is a free (\"donationware\") XTension that works with Quark 4/5: \"It allows you to move and paste text easily and faster with a key shortcut (Apple+Option+V). This text automatically acquires all text attributes of the location where are you pasting. The type, size, font and other text parameters you can also adapt many more. All text is adjusted correctly into place, where you paste it.\"
Opera announced an agreement with Macromedia, in which the two companies will work together to integrate their products for the Mac platform. Opera will deliver a full-featured, embeddable version of its desktop browser to be integrated into a wide range of Macromedia Web development products.
An early preview release of Proteus 2.0pr, a new version of the multi-protocol messaging cilent, is now available. The client supports AIM, ICQ, Jabber, MSN, Yahoo protocols. The shareware adds mail notifications, new sounds and emoticons, speech support single window mode, shell commands, file transer for Yahoo and MSN, Yahoo! Japan suppot, new keyboard shortcuts, ICQ/MSN block lists, and other changes.
eKiosk 3.1 adds URL filtering to the application for limiting Internet activity and securing a Mac in publicly accessible areas. Version 4.0 with OS X compatibility is due in September; however a beta is available now.
MacAT 6.2 is an update to the shareware ($50) automated task scheduling application for Mac server administrators that \"allows more than 42 of the most common MacOS tasks to be run daily, weekly, fortnightly, monthly or yearly without user intervention.\"
MacPlay today announced that it will bring Fallout 2 to the Mac. The company says the title is in final testing and will debut in the MacPlay Booth at Macworld Expo New York--with limited quantities available at the show. Fallout 2 is the sequel to the critically acclaimed RPG. The official release date of the $30 title is July 31, 2002. It will be available for both Classic and OS X.
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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
Fifth Hong Kong store to open June 30
The 46th official Apple store in what the company calls the "Greater China" region will open at 10AM local time in Hong Kong's New Town Plaza in the Sha Tin district on Thursday, June 30, according to a new page on Apple's retail website. Despite slowing growth due to economic turmoil in China, the country is still Apple's fastest-growing market. The new story will be the fifth for Hong Kong, a lucrative market for Apple thanks to the high concentration of wealth there and a thriving "gray" market. Normal store hours for the new store will be 10AM to 10PM every day. http://apple.co/291diaT
Apple Music bug bites very short songs
There appears to be a reproducible bug in the current version of iTunes -- version 12.4.1, running on OS X 10.11.5, both the current non-beta versions of the respective software -- that causes a streamed song to become "stuck" in endless buffering if the streamed item just before this happened was 60 seconds or less in length. The problem appears to stem from code in iTunes that signals the next track to start downloading one minute before the currently-playing track is done, and thus songs shorter than one minute don't trigger the download. Locally-stored music is unaffected by the bug, and the problem does not appear to exist in either the macOS Sierra developer beta or versions of iTunes earlier than 12.4, and does not affect the iOS Music app at all. http://bit.ly/291cN0l
Walmart Pay expands to 15 states
Walmart, one of the key progenitors of the failed CurrentC mobile payment system that was distinguished from Apple Pay by its ability to collect and share customer financial and buying data among its participants, has expanded the soft rollout of its alternative solution "Walmart Pay" to an additional 15 US states following a pilot program in Arkansas and Texas last month. Walmart continues to resist adding Apple Pay. The system, built into the Walmart app for iOS and Android, works with a complicated system of the camera scanning a purchase code at the register, then generating a QR code which is then scanned by the register. The system is available now in Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington, DC. http://apple.co/28SqZfu
Amazon refreshes entry-level Kindle
Amazon has added a new Kindle to its ebook reader range, one that is thinner and lighter than the previous entry-level model. Offering a six-inch 167-dpi touchscreen display, a doubled 4GB of storage, and an option for a white casing, the new model also adds in the ability to export highlights and notes to an email account as a PDF. Two versions of the all-new Kindle are available, priced at $80 including "Special Offers" and $100 without. http://amzn.to/28Q4c3R