Copyright © 2016
Pyramid Designs has released a set of classes and code modules for REALbasic that implement five common FTP operations. FTP Suite 1.0 enables any REALbasic program to transfer or delete files and upload or delete directories. The next version is expected to include directory downloads and the "list" command. Hobbyists can obtain FTP Suite for $30, while commercial developers must pay $60.
The PandaWave has published a 357-page document outlining its YAAF application framework. The YAAF Developer's Guidebook details "Yet Another Application Framework" -- a free cross-platform C++ framework that compiles and runs on Microsoft Windows 95 through Windows XP, Mac OS 5 through X, and on Linux under X Windows. [site not updated]
With the goals of the 'No Child Left Behind Act' in mind, Apple recently announced that it would offer a new series of 'Curriculum Mobile Labs' to help raise student achievement, through the integration of technology into the education system. "Apple Professional Development is included with every Curriculum Mobile Lab to ensure teachers can effectively use the technology in the classroom." The mobile labs include Airport-equipped iBooks, educational software, and other wireless networking solutions.
"Only the bravest" will have adopted new 'tablet' computers by the end of next year, a Gartner exec says; research in battery and portable power technology -- namely fuel cells -- may eliminate the need for device-specific charging solutions; the amount of junk email in inboxes has risen by over 80% since the beginning of the year.
MindVision Software has announced two significant additions to its software lineup -- FileStorm and FileStorm Pro. FileStorm ($20) allows Mac OS X software developers to quickly "package and deliver" software products. Disk images created using the application can be used for Internet distribution, or can be used to write product CDs. The 'pro' version of the suite ($80) allows developers to create installers from within FileStorm.
OmniGraffle 2.1 for Mac OS X 10.2 is a drawing and diagramming tool from The Omni Group. It supports transparency in PDF export, EPS export, and printing as well as uses Quartz technology for anti-aliased fonts, drop shadows, and transparencies. The update brings Japanese and French localizations, a new Network pallete and an updated UML palette. [15.6MB] Trinfinity Software has released its development tool for Mac OS 9 & X, ASCII Tools Pro 1.0. It allows developers to manipulate text quickly by converting a character to it's ASCII in decimal, hexadecimal, octal, and binary values. Other features, such as the Extract tab, allow a file to be loaded and the ASCII values to be extracted, and a Format tab gives developers to organize and format text. A single user license is $10. [Classic, OSX] The Omni Group, in collaboration with PopCap Games, has also announced the Mac OS X version of Mummy Maze ($20) and Seven Seas ($15). The puzzle games were previously only available for PC, Palm and as Web-based games. Free demos are available. [Mummy, Seven Seas]
Olympus and Epson have announced a special three-month promotion which offers a $75 rebate when consumers purchase any Olympus Camedia digital camera and one of three Epson Stylus Photo ink jet printers. Customers must purchase an Olympus Camedia digital camera and either the Epson Stylus Photo 785EPX, 825 or 925 printer within 30 days of one another. The digital camera and printer do not have to be purchased at the same time.
REAL Software has announced the availability of paid priority technical support, which "gives developers the security and flexibility they require and provide all customers with access to the appropriate level of assistance." Five options are available (in addition to the free web based assistance), ranging from the $50 Single Incident to the $2500 Premier Plan, which includes unlimited incidents, one day response time, and access to Directed Engineering Services.
Aladdin has updated iClean 5.0.1, its $30 tool that helps remove "Internet build-up and clutter" (cache files, unused downloads, etc.). The update brings Mac OS X 10.2 compatibility and an improved Cookie Editor for easier navigation and cookie deletion. Solutions Etcetera has announced a free 30 day trial version of SuperCard 4, an authoring and RAD tool for Mac OS X. Users can create games, teaching aides, utilities, personal productivity tools and more. [9.5MB] XTension 3.9.2 is a home automation application for "any Mac, from the Mac Plus, to the latest iMac. It will also run under X, in the "classic" mode." A free "lite" version is available, along with the $40 classic version. [290KB] Surround SCM 1.1 is a cross-platform change management tool with client and server support for Mac OS X. Enhancements include file sharing, history reports and a repositories. [9.0MB]
Sonic Desktop has updated their line of royalty-free music, SmartSound, with a new version of the popular Edge Series. “With Edge 4, I was looking to create intense, dark, edgy sounds that evoke the feeling of danger and excitement you feel when watching a luge competition or bungie jumping on ESPN,” said Edge 4 composer Michael Hakes. “The inspiration for many of these thrashin’, speed metal licks came from bands like Rage Against the Machine, Limp Bizkit, Korn and others.” Two CD formats are available, 44k ($130) and 22k ($70).
BitHeadz has released an update to their loop-sequencing program, Phrazer 2.0. It adds support for Mac OS X, the ability to bring in MP3s, a new "Save As Project" feature and a new customizable user interface. It also provides overall improvements in sample file search and integration with standard sequencers such as Digital Performer, Logic, Cubase and Pro Tools.
VPN Tracker 1.0.2 ($50) is a maintenance update for the Mac OS X VPN client. It allows users to connect to other commercial VPN gateways or software gateways using Linux, Mac OS X or Windows. The release smashes bugs and adds minor enhancements. [3.0MB] iEvents 1.5b2 ($20) is a Mac OS 9 & X client-side tool for creating custom calendar websites that can be uploaded to any internet server or iDisk. It now fixes a menu handling bug in the Classic version. [982KB] Office v.X 10.1.2 is a security update for the office suite for Mac OS X. It is now a combined updater that includes all previously released updates for Office v.X. [14.6MB]
Charles Haddad of BusinessWeek comments on a recent Giga Information Group report that stated Apple "is in full retreat in almost every market segment, home users being the prominent exception." He notes that Apple's downfall has been predicted numerous times, but has still survived and actually turns a profit. Haddad credits Apple success to high profit margins, an extremely loyal user base, and recent cross-market products.
Other World Computing has introduced three new Mercury Elite Pro external FireWire storage solutions, which featurs 8MBs of cache in 120GB, 180GB and 200GB capacities. The drives ship with Intech HD SpeedTools, a FireWire cable, external power adaptor and a two-year OWC warranty. The 120GB, 7200RPM model is $300, the 180GB model is $450 and the 200GB drive is $500.
Emailchemy 1.4 adds an Entourage converter, a Neoplanet converter/wizard, and Outlook Express 5 for UNIX/Solaris converter/wizard, and an improved Outlook Express 5 for Macintosh converter to the $25 application that reads email files from the proprietary formats of the most popular email applications and converts them to standard formats. [336KB] Advenio has released SQLGrinder 1.2.4, an update to its native Mac OS X SQL editor and developer tool that allows developers to easily create, edit and execute SQL queries as well as browse their database structures. It has improved import and export functionality as well as bug fixes. A demo of the $50 utility is available. [1.3MB] AppMac's nQuick 5 for Mac OS X is a productivity utility offering a utility palette with access to applications, OS X files, email functions, text clippings, and access to notes, passwords, serials numbers, and URLs. The $20 is automatically invoked when moving the cursor to the left or right side of the screen. [2.0MB] A Mac OS X version of Prosoniq's acclaimed free NorthPole VST Resonant Filter PlugIn is available: "In short, you can send any of your VST/WaveLab tracks through this 'virtual analog' device to either create special effects or to simulate the behaviour of an analog 4-pole filter." [Classic, OSX]
Apple today announced its updated iBook line with processors running at up to 800 MHz and the ATI Mobility Radeon (AMR) 7500 graphics with up to 32MB of memory. Apple also reduced pricing by $200 across the line.
Apple today announced new Titanium PowerBook G4 notebooks with processors running at up to 1 GHz, 1MB of DDR level 3 cache, a slot-loading SuperDrive, and a new ATI Mobility Radeon (AMR) 9000 graphics chip with up to 64MB of RAM. Pricing starts at $2,299 and availability is listed as 1-2 days for the low-end model and 5-7 days for the high-end model at the Apple Store.
Microtek today announced it would begin shipping the ScanMaker 6800 in mid-November. The flatbed scanner integrates ASF's Digital ICE technology for photo prints, allowing users to scan a damaged photo print and apply Digital ICE for photo correction to remove dust and lint while also correcting most scratches and cracks. It also features 48-bit color, 4800x2400 dpi optical resolution, FireWire and USB 2.0 connectivity, a built-in 4"x5" transparency light plate, and an 8.5"x11" scan area. The $400 scanner includes Adobe Photoshop Elements; ABBYY FineReader Sprint for Optical Character Recognition; Microtek's scan, color copy and e-mail utilities; ScanWizard 5 scanner controller; USB 2.0 cable, and PCI FireWire host controller card and cable.
Ableton earlier this month introduced LIVE 2.0, a major upgrade to its sequencing instrument for Mac OS 9, Mac OS X, and Windows. Version 2.0 offers enhancements to the performance and jamming features of the original software and also adds multi-track recording and editing with "Elastic Audio," described as the "unique ability to render audio totally elastic. This feature allows tempo to be set at anytime during recording, performance or playback." Other features include DJ-like cross-fading, relative session mapping, MIDI control of tempo and transport, presets to save/recall effect settings, and new Gate and Redux effects. It is due in December for $400 with upgrades either $70 (online) or $90 (boxed). [site not updated]
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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
Unsafe IoT called threat to humanity
US Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told two different Senate committees yesterday that the Internet of Things posed a clear and present danger, and could be weaponized by governments. Before the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Clapper declared that insecure IoT "will bring new security vulnerabilities" and "will connect tens of billions of new physical devices that could be exploited" by those wishing to perpetrate violence or eavesdrop on the populace of the world. http://bit.ly/23Xvcky
Apple public betas for iOS 9.3, OS X 10.11.4
Following Monday's release of betas for the iOS and OS X, Apple has unveiled public betas for both operating systems. The iOS 9.3 beta includes all of the previously reported enhancements for education customers, along with Wi-Fi calling for Verizon iPhone owners, and a carrier update for T-Mobile users. The OS X 10.11.4 third beta includes enhancements to Twitter URL opening, Live Photo viewing and sharing, and Evernote note importation into Notes.
Google given NHTSA SDS waivers
In contrast to the California Department of Motor Vehicle's approach, the US National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) has confirmed that it is declaring the software in autonomous cars is the legal driver of a so-equipped vehicle. In a letter to Google, the NHTSA says that it "will interpret 'driver' in the context of Google's described motor vehicle design as referring to the SDS [self-driving system], and not to any of the vehicle occupants." Other matters, such as legally-required rear-view mirrors for occupied vehicles has yet to be determined. However, regulations specifying the "driver" need no longer be interpreted as meaning a person behind the wheel, as the agency writes that self-driving cars "will not have a 'driver' in the traditional sense that vehicles have had drivers during the last more than one hundred years" http://1.usa.gov/1QrAGtR