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Microsoft this evening pulled an advertisement from its Web site that combatted Apple's 'Switch' marketing campaign. The advertisement was based around the purported testimonial of a freelance writer who switched from the Macintosh platform to Microsoft Windows. Readers of MacNN's initial report were quick to discover that the photograph of the woman used in "Confessions of a Mac to PC convert" was actually a piece of stock photography (used commonly in low-budget advertising). While Microsoft maintains that the story is genuine, the software maker told c|net that it "regrets" publishing the ad, in what was clearly poor judgment.
Acme Made recently introduced iCover, a line of protective covers designed specifically for Apple's flat-panel displays and iMac computers. The iCover, which comes in 15- and 17-inch variants ($30 and $45), was introduced last week at the Mac Business Expo. The iCover boasts an attractive design, while maintaining durability.
Apple has bought a large amount of retail space in the upper level of the Cherry Creek shopping center in Denver, Colorado, observes MacNN reader Will Jessop. The mall, described as "upscale," is home to boutiques for retail chains such as Louis Vuitton, Cartier, Tiffany’s, DKNY, Prada, Saks 5th Ave and Bang & Olufsen.
OpenOffice.org has released OpenOffice.org 1.0.1 X11 for Mac OS X and Darwin. Based on the OpenOffice 1.0.1 code, this public beta release runs on the XDarwin/X11 window system, similar to past releases. It contains many bug fixes, and features printing capabilities.
Countering Apple's Switch campaign, Microsoft has posted the 'Confessions of a Mac to PC Convert.' The switcher, who is unnamed, writes "I am a freelance writer; I demand the best in mobile computing. There's a much greater choice of portable computers and features, for less money, on the Windows platform. My laptop came with 512 MB of RAM, a 15" screen, a DVD player, and Windows XP Home Edition pre-installed, for $450 less than a comparable iBook. My recommendation is to go straight to Windows XP Professional; the extra features for mobile users are worth it." [MS has pulled the page, but it can be found here]
CrushFTP 3.0b27 is a $25 FTP client featuring multihoming, virtual servers, bandwidth limiters, remote administration, virtual directories and more. The latest beta adds auto sensing of LAN transfers, better support for remote serving files supporting PASV mode and adds the ability to install bootup service automatically. [Classic, OSX]
On Saturday, Apple announced the Maintenance Program for Mac OS X Server, which offers a three-year subscription for major Mac OS X Server upgrades. The pre-paid updates are automatically shipped, saving time and administrative hassle. Pricing starts at $500 per machine for a 36-month maintenance contract on a limited 10-client license of Mac OS X Server and $1000 for the same contract for unlimited-license of Mac OS X Server.
Newer Technology has updated their NUpowr 500MHz G4 processor upgrade cards for PowerBook G3 'Pismo' systems. "The revised upgrade uses the latest low-power PowerPC G4 processor, which not only runs up to 20 degrees Celcius cooler but also extends the usable battery time by an average of 20 minutes." The price is $300.
Aspyr has announced that Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds: Clone Campaigns has hit Gold Master (GM) status and is being sent into duplication. The expansion pack to Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds features characters, vehicles and locations from the Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones movie. The Mac OS 9 & X game is priced at $30.
Mathworks has released a MATLAB 6.5R13 updater that brings Mac OS X 10.2 Jaguar compatibility as well as other bug fixes to the industry application that integrates mathematical computing, visualization, and a language to provide a flexible environment for technical computing.
Square Box today announced CatDV Pro 3.0 (and CatDV Workgroup Server), the professional version of its popular cross-platform video logging tool and media asset database. CatDV Pro 3.0 offers automatic logging of DV footage, meta data support (with unlimited custom fields), support for several log formats (Avid, DPS and Final Cut Pro), search/print functions, and support for other media types. The $275 application is available for Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X. CatDV Workgroup Server ($700), which offers a client-server architecture, requires Mac OS X, Java 1.3/1.4 and MySQL. The entry-level CatDV Pro 2.5 is also available for $80.
Buena Software today announced the release of Effect Essentials for Final Cut Pro, a set of 10 effect plugins for use with Apple's non-linear video editing software. The plugins are being offered at an introductory price of $200 until November 1st ($50 off). A time-limited demo, which includes the fully functional, free Camera Flash plugin, is available onine. The effects work with Final Cut Pro 3.0 or later under Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X.
John Ellenich has posted photos from the Apple Store Somerset grand opening in Troy (MI). MacGroup-Detroit has posted photos, a video and a QTVR of the new store as well.
Creative today announced the NOMAD Jukebox Zen, a pocket-sized hard drive MP3 player with both USB and FireWire connectivity that the company positions against the iPod. It holds up to 8,000 songs by supporting both MP3 and Microsoft WMA formats: "Compared to the 20GB Apple iPod, which only stores approximately 5,200 MP3 songs, the NOMAD Jukebox Zen can store up to 60% more songs and is priced 40% less. The NOMAD Jukebox Zen is now shipping at only US$299 after a $50 mail-in rebate." It features an anodized aluminum case, stylish carrying case with belt loop, a 12-hour battery, both data/music storage options, and a "scroller wheel" for song navigation.
Several utilities and applications have been updated, including Project Timer 1.2.2, Kids GoGoGo 6.0, Aquataxx 1.0, and Virtual WineCellar 4.0: ScriptSoftware's Project Timer 1.2.2 is a major upgrade to the popular time tracking program, adding moer keyboard shortcuts, a new caching engine for improved performance, and other enhancements. [Classic, OSX] MAKI Enterprise's Kids GoGoGo 6.0, adds an updated database, new installer, improved domain blocking, better network security, and improved image filtering/blocking, and bug fixes to the $30 parental control application. [Classic, OSX] Aquataxx 1.0 is a $10 shareware version of the classic strategy game "Ataxx. The OS X-only game allows you to play the computer, a user in the room, online friends, or watch a demo; has four switchable board/piece appearances (including support for custom skins), and 15 different board configurations and 5 computer difficulty levels. [282KB] Virtual WineCellar 4.0 is an easy-to-use cellaring software for wine collectors. It features standard data entry fields as well as several advanced functions, such as a suppliers database with order-to-inventory processing, integration with Vinote barcoded neck tags, support for digitized bottle labels, and much more. Licenses start at $20. [2.1MB]
SimBiotic's EcoBeakerHS 1.1 is an educational tool for teaching ecology, environmental science, and evolution to high school students: "It presents students with a community of species, and has them discover important biological concepts by doing realistic experiments on these communities." Version 1.1 adds better graphics, improvements to the ten laboratories and accompanying workbooks, and other enhancements. Pricing starts at $600 for ten-user license and a single set of books.
Blue Line Studios today announced version 1.6.0 of its 'JewelCaseIllustrator' CD labeler software. JewelCaseIllustrator is a drawing program for creating labels, tray liners, and booklets for CDs and DVDs. One key feature of the application is its ability to create of Finder-like directory lists to index entire volumes. This version adds a 'Filter Picture' command to change placed pictures' RGB and HSB values. The update is free to registered users of the $25 software.
SquidCam v1.1 is a $25 audio and video conferencing application for Mac OS X that allows multiple users to conduct conversations over a network connection. SquidCam features audio and video connectivity, as well as text messaging and voice mail.
If Then Software has released My Favorites Martian 1.0, a small utility that syncs Web site bookmarks between multiple computers using an FTP server of your choice. The Internet Explorer and Chimera-compatible application has a publish and subscribe motif, which allows instant syncing of all of your important bookmarks across numerous computers. It is designed to keep work and home bookmarks organized.
On October 19th, there will be a large gathering of MacFreaks in the Netherlands town of Maarssen where there will be an Ellen Feiss look-alike contest. Ellen Feiss is featured in Apple's Switch advertising campaign. Throughout the day there will also have a contest called "Oud Hollands PC Werpen," roughly translated to mean "Old Dutch PC Throwing," in which participants will try to throw PCs as far as possible.
DV Graphics today expanded its Iconize Me! service to include two new offerings. DV graphics will create a digital caricature icon of you for use in Mac OS 9 or X. The basic service costs $15 and the new $25 and $35 packages offer larger images and full-use licenses.
Numerous news sources and readers have reported that IBM has announced a 64-bit processor that is expected to be used in upcoming Macs. The IBM PowerPC 970 can process data in 64-bit mode as well as today's standard of 32-bit. Currently 64 bit processors, which can address massive amounts of memory, are mostly found today in high-end servers. Apple, IBM and Motorola have all declined to comment on the switch, which has been rumored as the processors in Macintosh computers have trailed Windows-based counterparts in clock speed. [updated]
Now AAPL Stock: 93.7 ( -0.57 )
TestFlight updated for iOS, watchOS
Apple on Thursday updated its developer-oriented TestFlight software to version 1.3.2 for compatibility with apps being developed for iOS 9.3 watchOS 2.2, along with the usual "stability and performance improvements." Some developers, however, are still reporting some issues loading beta apps onto the watchOS 2.2 beta. The latest beta for developers was released on Monday, and is available through the App Store or Apple's developer portal. [3.60MB] http://apple.co/1PQ64pF
CBS: No recent streaming conversations with Apple
CBS CEO Les Moonves has made remarks, casting doubt on a launch of Apple's live streaming television service. In interviews this week, the executive said regarding negotiations with Apple that "we had conversations awhile back, and we haven't had recent conversations with them," adding that "the phone is always ringing" regarding similar services, but not with Apple on the line. http://cnnmon.ie/1PptJM6
Complex date setting bug crashes 64-bit iOS device
A serious bug has been spotted with iOS devices running iOS 8 or newer, with a 64-bit processor. If a user disables auto-check time, and manually sets the date of a device back to as far as it will go, then again to January 1, 1970, and finally rebooting, the iPhone is crashed, perhaps terminally. The bug affects the iPhone 5s and newer devices, running a processor from the A7 and up. Theories abound as to the cause of the crash, but the most credible seems to be a clock set to less than an arbitrary "zero" date, causing all manners of routines relying on the time setting to fail during startup. http://bit.ly/1TV6psS
Weber buys iDevices' iGrill, Kitchen Thermometer
Cooking gear manufacturer Weber is purchasing iOS accessory manufacturer iDevices iGrill and Kitchen Thermometer lines. As part of the purchase, Weber is working in parallel with iDevices to roll out a new version of the products, and associated apps, this spring. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. CEO of iDevices Chris Allen said that the transition will allow the company to "focus even more heavily on becoming a leader in the home automation market." http://bit.ly/1PFk3uZ
Vevo music video app launched for Apple TV
Vevo today announced its new native tvOS app for the fourth generation Apple TV. The new app allows users Siri Remote navigation for discovery of top videos by genre, or to search for individual artists and videos. Playlists generated on another device sync between all the iterations of the app. http://apple.co/1PFhxEU
HydraDock team unveils USB 3.1 Type C Roadie
KickShark, the team that brought the HydraDock desktop USB-C dock to market, has launched a Kickstarter project for The Roadie -- a USB 3.1 Type C standard-compliant pocket hub for the 12 inch Apple MacBook and other compatible devices. The Roadie occupies the same footprint on a desk as a credit card, with a short USB-C male cable on one end for connecting to a 12 inch MacBook, and a female USB-C port on the other end for plugging in a MacBook power adapter. One side has an RJ45 jack for gigabit Ethernet, and an HDCP-compliant HDMI jack that handles up to 4K displays. KickShark promises shipment of all products within four weeks of campaign completion. The "early bird" offer for the hub is a $69 commitment, with a $79 commitment for a Roadie after 500 backers have pledged. http://kck.st/1o6knw5
HBO Now has 800,000 subscribers
The CEO of HBO, Richard Plepler has confirmed that the online streaming HBO service, HBO Now, has 800,000 subscribers. When criticized for the seemingly low number, Plepler noted that the still nascent service was bound to Apple exclusivity during the fifth season of Game of Thrones. Plepler declared during the Time Warner quarterly earnings conference call marketing for the online-only offering would be enhanced in 2016. While HBO Now's critics are slamming the low numbers, the service must also compete against itself on cable, in addition to Netflix and other streaming services. http://on.recode.net/1QWoLHe