Gideon Softworks has released xBack v2.0, a $12 \'honorware\' utility that allows users to replace thir Mac OS X desktop with a screen saver. The update is now fully Jaguar compatible and sports other improvements.
MacNN today announced the discontinuation of its Mac OS X-specific section, osx.macnn.com. Mac OS X has grown immeasurably since its early days, and as such is now considered to be an integral and seamless part of the Mac platform. MacNN intends to offer innovative new ways of getting Mac news this Fall, for users who still enjoy specialized content. MacNN also introduced today a simplified version of the MacNN home page -- MacNN Slim Edition. The \'Slim\' edition will allow users with slower connections/computers to keep pace on the latest Mac news. A more comprehensive and universal Mobile Edition of MacNN is still in development. The initial stages of MacNN\'s server upgrades are complete, and MacNN\'s mail services have returned to normal. We will also restore the \'Related Stories\' feature, as it will no longer have a damaging impact on server performance. Finally, MacNN is very pleased to inform users of Microsoft Internet Explorer that initial testing shows that the \"MacNN/IE\" conflict has been resolved. No further browser crashes as a result of MacNN.com or the MacNN Forums should occur. Note to users dissatisfied with MacNN\'s news comment system: a more robust solution is still in development, and we expect to replace our current system shortly.
Adobe has released two small utilities for Photoshop 7: the Mac OS X Keyboard Shortcut Fix and the Ignore EXIF Color Space plug-in. The Keyboard Shortcut Fix allows Photoshop to override the Command + Tilde shortcut that was included with Jaguar. The Ignore EXIF Color Space plug-in disregards the problem data that some digital cameras include with attached images (which caused incorrect color space information). [Keyboard, Ignore]
irEdit 1.0 is a $20 source code and general text editor for Mac OS X. It features dual syntax coloring, user-defined languages, a quick find tool and is cocoa-native.
Blue World Communications announced Mac OS X 10.2 support for Lasso Professional 5, its Web application for data-driven Web sites. Only minor configuration changes are required in order to run Lasso on Mac OS X 10.2.
A MacNN reader notes that new non-beta drivers for several higher-end Umax scanners have been released on the European site. \"[It] installed well, seems to work pretty quickly, OSX native, includes a plug-in for Photoshop that works too.\"
Despite the technical and aesthetic milestones achieved with its new \"Jaguar\" OS, Apple faces an \"uphill battle\" in recuperating lost market share, explains a NewsFactor columnist. Citing comments by both the Giga Information Group and IDC firms, the article concludes that Apple has made many \"strategic errors,\" which have only been compounded by the \"overwhelming dominance\" of Microsoft Windows. One glaring strategic fault, according to the report, is that Apple operating systems lock buyers in to Apple hardware, whereas Microsoft Windows works on countless brands.
MacNN\'s special Jaguar coverage will continue throughout the day and week, as more information and tips become available. Check the page often for software news, compatibility reports, and further developments. Updated: Aug. 28.
Perlidex v1.0.1 is a $25 shareware Perl development environment for Mac OS X. The update improves documentation as well as fixes bugs.
Yamaha has begun shipping its external CRW-F1 line of CD-RW drives. The drives offer 44x write and 24x re-write speeds, 8MB of buffer memory, and the new DiscT@2 Laser Labeling System, which burns graphics and text directly onto CD-R discs. Three different versions of the drive are available: the $230 USB 2.0 (currently shipping), the $280 FireWire and USB 2.0 (shipping first week of September), and the $330 SCSI (shipping second week of September).
Apple is opening a second AppleCentre in downtown Beijing, China, according to the Beijing Mac User Group. The building is opening \"soon\", and photos of the decorated store-front are available on the website.
Charles Haddad of Business Week states that \"Jaguar, the latest version of Apple\'s new operating system released on Saturday, Aug. 24, is spectacular. [...] It\'s arguably the best OS ever released for personal computers. Fast, stable, elegant, and intuitively easy to use, OS X makes owning a Mac once again a mark of distinction.\"
tranquility v5.2 is a visual effects game now for Mac OS X 10.2. The update also brings 10% faster frame rates and an on-screen guide for new players. A demo of the $18 is available.
Dog Park Software\'s MacLoggerDX 1.6 adds Jaguar optimizations, increased memory, a new city database, and other enhancements to its $70 application used by Amateur Radio Operators and Short Wave Listeners to \"get the most out of their computer controlled radio transceivers.\"
Wildform has announced the release of its updated Flix product line: Flix Pro ($150) is a video encoding solution that encodes virtually any type of video, audio and image file, outputs all types of Flash video and offers advanced Flash features. It includes both 1-pass and high resolution 2-pass VBR (variable bitrate) encoding, editing, cropping, batch encoding, projectors, preloaders and other features. Flix is also available in two consumer versions: Flix Lite ($30) offers the basic features required to encode and deploy Flash video, while Flix Standard ($90) adds 2-pass VBR compression and other \"time saving\" features. The Flix SDK (software developer\'s kit) includes everything required to create robust client and server applications with complete Flix Pro functionality. (Pricing depends on usage.)
Formac has released TiVeRon, new digital video recording software for its studio dv/tv media converter. Formac\'s TiVeRon software is a native Cocoa application that allows users to schedule and record TV shows ahead of time--from either the local machine or from remote locations via the Web. It is compatible with Jaguar is shipping immediately with all studio dv/tv and is available as free upgrade to existing owners. The software adds AppleScript support, preview of recordings in thumbnail size, access movie sequences instantly by scrolling the timeline bar, infinite opacity adjustment of the TV display frame, and a new 720 x 480 viewing option. The studo dv/tv media converter sells for $400.
Other World Computing has released XPostFacto 2.2, its software utility developed by Ryan Rempel that allows owners of computers unsupported by Apple to install and boot Mac OS X 10.2 (Jaguar) (as well as other versions of Mac OS X). It adds support for the Beige G3s, support for UltraTek IDE cards (along with OWC\'s firmware update), support for some additional PowerComputing models, support for leaving onboard video disconnected when using a video card; and, improved documentation. A $10 registration fee offers additional access to OWC\'s OS X tech forum and helps \"contribute to XPostFacto\'s continuing development.\"
A Better Finder Rename 4.9 introduces a new DOS 8.3 truncation feature and improved date and time handling to the $15 shareware tool for renaming multiple items quickly and conveniently. It also features further enhancements to the learnability of the tool and two minor bug fixes. [Classic, OSX]
Now AAPL Stock: 93.4 ( -2.7 )
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