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FirewireDirect has unveiled the Vanguard Ultra One, an Ultra 160 SCSI Raid Solution for 1U Rackmounts providing RAID level 0, 1, 3, 0+1 and 5. The system offers storing capabilities up to 800GB and is powered by an Intel 80303 64-bit RISC processor. It also features 256MB of High Speed Cache and a Smart function LCD panel for user controls. The Enclosure Kit (no drives) is priced at $2655, 480GB (4x120) is $3655, 720GB (4x180) is $4355, and 800GB (4x200) is $4555.
epicware's Fire 0.31e is an update to the popular multi-protocol internet instant chat client that provides support for AIM, ICQ, Yahoo!, IRC, MSN, and Jabber chat services. This version adds more smileys, sends typing notifications, and fixes several bugs. [2.2MB] AppMac's bManager 3.0 is a $100 professional contact manager and CRM application for OS X, offering support for Apple's Address Book, integrated email functions, vCard format support, unlimited contacts, group management, and an improved interface. [6.0MB] Deep Sky's maintenance update, HTTP Client Deux v1.1.1b01, is a 4th Dimension component which provides a comprehensive set of HTTP and HTTPS request methods for use throughout 4D based projects. Sound Studio 2.06 fixes several bugs in the audio recording and editing tool. The digital audio editor can record up to 2GB of audio, mix audio, apply effects filters, generate tones, pitch-shift and resample audio, and open and save in several file formats. [1.2MB] Pangea has posted Bugdom 2 v1.01 addresses issues on older versions of Mac OS 9 as well as a problem saving games on Mac OS 9 and other minor localization issues. [300KB]
Angelo Scicolone's $10 shareware XChar 3.0 for quickly locating special characters adds support for Mac OS 8/9, displays HTML codes for special characters, offers customized translucency, and other features. ergonis software also released PopChar X 1.3.1 ($30), a maintenance update to the OS X sibling of the popular PopChar Pro. Users can also enable a similar menu within Mac OS X (with less functions) under the International Panel in the System Preferences under the Input Menu tab ("Character Palette"). [XC, PC-X]
Apple yesterday evening posted QuickTime 6.02 via the software update and on the Web, but has not detailed the changes, according to one reader, although we have not been able to confirm it. A standalone QuickTime 6.02 installer is also available. Update: Most users report that the software update function has been down since last night, but the download is indeed available on the Web.
IDG yesterday said it would continue the East Coast Macworld Expo with or without Apple, but noted that Apple's response surprised even the IDG CEO: "I spoke to Apple as late as 9 p.m. last night, and they said nothing to me about what they did today," Greco said. "Nothing." Greco said that he speaks regularly to Apple, and that the two firms have been working on plans for two more Macworld shows, in Britain and Germany. Greco speculated that Apple may not want to have two major US shows each year, because the company doesn't have enough new products in its development pipeline to justify the large, expensive keynote events held at each show....Greco predicted that the loss of Apple would depress Macworld attendance by only 10 to 15 percent, and he vowed the show would proceed."
Badia Software has announced two new XTensions for Mac QuarkXPress 4.1 and 5.0: ContactPage XT and Exportools XT. ContactPage XT ($60) fast-tracks the creation of picture contact sheets, along with captions, for easy cataloguing. It has a comprehensive set of customizable features that lets users select page size and margins, grid layout, picture and text box dimensions, as well as extensive caption information. It also includes a "resume" feature that begins cataloguing exactly where you left off after a break. Exportools XT ($60) automates the process of saving document pages as individual files in several popular formats, including EPS, PostScript, plain or rich text, page screenshots and html. Users can choose which pages to export (spreads as well as single pages), the rules governing the file names, and, optionally, any program in which to open the new files for post-processing.
Macaroni 1.0 is a $8 shareware tool which handles regular maintenance for Mac OS X's Unix core, offering automatic execution of standard Unix tasks, a configurable interface for adding custom tasks at specified intervals, a history of performed actions, and other options. [1.1MB] QuantumSoft today released pro Fit 5.6.3, a free update to its $95 tool for the analysis, processing, plotting and evaluation of numerical data and mathematical functions. The update provides various bug fixes and improves compatibility with Mac OS 10.2. [Classic, OSX] Griffin's PowerMate 1.5.1 driver for Mac OS X brings a new Special Key command and other usability enhancements to the software for its PowerMate USB Multimedia Controller. [3.3MB] Emailchemy 1.3.2 adds new export options, an Outlook Express for Windows conversion wizard, improved Eudora converters, and better QuickMail conversion to the $25 email conversion utility. [323KB]
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Apple to open R&D center in India
A new report says that Apple will be opening a new technology center in Hyderabad, India, helping to boost the city's growing reputation as a tech center. The facility would operate within the WaveRock facility, and create 4,500 new jobs at a cost of around $25 million. In 2015, India surpassed the $1 billion in yearly sales milestone, and Apple has recently received permission to open retail stores in the country under its own control, an exception to rules that usually block foreign ownership. http://zd.net/1SMBVu4
Google killing Picasa starting May 1
Google Photos head Anil Sabharwal confirmed in a blog post today that the search engine giant will be shutting down acquisition Picasa. Support and downloads for the desktop application will terminate on March 15 with the application continuing to work for the time being. The transition to Google Photos truly commences on May 1, with deprecation of some Picasa API calls happening shortly thereafter. Users that have Google Photos access will find their photos already migrated. A mass-download tool for users not wishing to use Google Photos will be available sometime after May 1. http://bit.ly/1SmV2KH
Rogue Amoeba Piezo updated, departing App Store
In order to continue working on audio capture tool Piezo, developer Rogue Amoeba has simultaneously updated the app to version 1.5, and announced that it will pull version 1.2.6 from the Mac App Store. Customers who own the Mac App Store version have a one-time migration process to the Rogue Amoeba-served version. The company notes that the sandboxing restriction placed on Mac App Store versions "effectively stopped our ability to upgrade Piezo in any meaningful way." [8.80MB] http://bit.ly/1PIjz7l
FCC spectrum auction will happen without Google
After throwing its hat in earlier, Google (and associated companies) has declared that it is not participating in this year's FCC spectrum auction. A company spokeswoman said of the auction that "like all those interested in improved connectivity and equitable access, we'll be following the upcoming spectrum auction closely. That said, we have not filed to participate." http://on.recode.net/1oy5LWk
iPad Air 3, iPhone 5se sold Friday after launch?
Reverting the way products are actually released by Apple after an announcement to the way it was a decade ago, reports are circulating that new products revealed at a March announcement will go on sale the Friday immediately following the unveil. Slated to appear at a conjectural Tuesday, March 15 event are a new Apple four-inch phone with more up to date internals currently referred to as the iPhone 5se, and a new iPad Air 3 model with Smart Connector and other enhancements. http://bit.ly/1o7mqiY
Lexmark prevails in toner import appeal
Printer manufacturer Lexmark has won an appeal on the third-party US resale of its printer cartridges originally destined for markets outside North America. The appeals court ruled in a 10-2 vote in favor of Lexmark's demand to stop the sale and against Impression Products, both on the toner cartridge resale matter, as well as a related matter regarding overturning the reseller's refilling one-use cartridges and selling those in the US market. The ruling has ramifications in the tech industry, as well as the pharmaceutical and medical technology markets. Impression Products promises an appeal before the supreme court. http://reut.rs/1SLVmmG
AT&T expands BOGO promo to iPhone 6s
Beginning today, new and existing AT&T customers can purchase a new iPhone 6s and get another one free when adding a second line. Over the weekend, customers must purchase two phones through AT&T Next (one can be an existing number), and add both phones to a qualified plan. AT&T notes that "after three bill cycles or less" the account will start to receive up to $650 spread out over 30 monthly bill credits to offset the cost of the installment plan for the phone. Taxes are due at time of sale. http://soc.att.com/1SLUP4k