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LaCie is the latest vendor to add 200GB and 250GB drives to its d2 line of FireWire hard drives. The drives feature a slim design with sleek aluminum case, offer Kensington security lock support, and can be arranged vertically on the desktop, horizontally stacked in a desk rack, or mounted in standard 19-inch racks with other devices. The 200GB drive ($500) is available with a 7,200 rpm mechanism and 8MB buffer, while the larger 250GB drive ($550) sports a 5,400 rpm/2MB mechanism. It is also available in 60GB ($200), 80GB ($220), and 120GB ($270)--all of which sport the 7200RPM/8MB mechanisms.
WIBU-KEY 3.30 is now available for Mac OS X. This version expands the network functionality of the WIBU-KEY driver software for the hardware-based copy protection system. A device called the WIBU-BOX connects via the USB port of any Macintosh and acts as a digital "key" to that computer's protected contents. [Download - 4.2MB] Luc Thomaere has released an open-source Calendar class for use with REALbasic projects. "It is based on the canvas class," and is compatible with Mac OS 9/X, explains the developer. The aptly-named class allows developers to implement calendars in their applications. [Download - Classic, OS X] CodeTek VirtualDesktop 2.0 includes support for non-U.S. keyboards, offers improved Virtual PC support, and addresses several compatibility, interface and bug issues. VirtualDesktop allows Mac OS X users to take advantage of multiple-desktop functionality, similar to that found in other operating systems, such as Linux. [Download - 5.0MB] iWebCal -- a popular online service that allows iCal users to upload and view calendars on the Internet -- today became an open-source effort. The Web-based software is now available for interested developers or hobbyists to download. Developers can implement iWebCal in their own systems, or improve the source code with custom modifications. [License Agreement required to download] Conceptualize Software has released version 2.0 of its 'Time Clock Jr' clock add-on for FileMaker Pro. The software can be setup on a single computer or shared via FileMaker Server to a group of employees. Pricing is $25 for a single-user license, while the multi-user (unlimited) version costs $100. [162KB]
Wolfram Research has released gridMathematica, a parallel computing solution for dedicated grids or clusters. It offers a "cost-effective" way of deploying Mathematica for parallel computations. gridMathematica can run on a cluster of machines, including those running UNIX, Linux, Windows, and Mac OS X. Roman Maeder, creator of the Parallel Computing Toolkit -- a key component of the suite -- says one of his "main motivations" for writing the package was to "make parallel computing easily available to a wide range of workgroups."
Apple Computer and 'Demo Days' marketing company MarketSource are again preparing for a month-long 'Demo Days' series for the holiday shopping season. The first of the Apple Demo Days is scheduled for this Saturday, according to one participant. The marketing initiative hires knowledgeable Mac users to help educate and sell Macs at third-party retailers, such as Microcenter and CompUSA.
Bert Torfs has compiled a hands-on J2EE guide for Mac OS X, including using Eclipse, JBoss, MySQL and Middlegen products. It covers topics such as: how to make JBoss operate inside Eclipse, how to install MySQL, and how to make JBoss connect to a MySQL database. The PDF document is available on Mr. Torfs' Web site, which is otherwise unrelated to this guide. [Download - 'J2EE' PDF]
The University of Colorado has installed a new thirty-node Xserve cluster for use by its biology department. The cluster, which was underwritten by a grant from the National Science Foundation runs Yellow Dog Linux from Terra Soft. The software developer helped install the cluster, which will assist researchers who are "interested in understanding the biophysics of computation in neural dendrites." Update: Michael Giddings, an Assistant Professor at the University of North Carolina, let us know that the departments of Microbiology & Immunology and Biomedical Engineering at that university also operate an Xserve cluster. The 42-node cluster is used to do proteomics- and bioinformatics-related research, with the goal of linking "proteins observed via mass spectrometry" back to the genome, in order to understand "how genomic changes effect the phenotype of cells."
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak will participate in a special presentation that aims to educate 'Classic' Mac OS users about the benefits of moving to Mac OS X. "The Move to Mac OS X" audience at the upcoming Macworld Conference & Expo can expect to "learn about the reasons for upgrading to OS X," says IDG World Expo. The Macworld Conference & Expo takes place January 6-10, 2003 in San Francisco.
Sneakery has obtained two scanned images of a poster advertising the Brown Herald's interview with Apple 'Switch' ad star Ellen Feiss. Yesterday, we noted that the college newspaper would publish an interview with Ms. Feiss on Friday.
Princeton Satellite has released MultiVehicleSim v1.5, an application that simulates multiple aerospace vehicles anywhere from the surface of the earth to deep space. It includes high fidelity dynamics models, OpenGL graphics, a TCP/IP interface and a object-oriented, extensible architecture. It is designed for aerospace vehicle flight control system design, trade studies, air-to-air combat, satellite formation flying, air traffic control and separation analysis. [2.2MB] RoomDex is a new scheduling application designed to schedule meetings and other events in your conference rooms, laboratories, or computer labs. It supports an unlimited number of buildings and meeting facilities and can share schedules with other staff as well as plan regularly scheduled events. A single-user license is $100, while a multi-user version (requires FileMaker Pro 5) is $250. [2.0MB] Hungarian-based Graphisoft has announced that its is shipping ArchiCAD 8 in the US and Canada. ArchiCAD 8 is the company's flagship software application for the architecture and buiding industry and is used worldwide by more than 100,000 design professionals, according to Architosh. See No Evil 1.1 is a free utility that hides your screen with a click of the mouse or with a user-configured hotkey. It can also hide all applications except the Finder. Version 1.1 includes new artwork, two configurable hotkeys, a new preferences window, and he ability to hide the cursor. [720KB]
Difusi today began shipping new speaker covers built specifically for Apple's iMac Sphere and Digital Pro Speakers as part of its Speaker Grille collection, designed as "an aesthetic enhancement and to provide protection from wandering childrenís fingers, or other foreign objects inserted to the exposed speaker for the complete range of Macs." The new designs are expected to start shipping on Monday November 25th. It is available in a choice of Chrome and Clear finishes for an introductory price of $13. Difusi says it will be releasing additional grille sets for the eMac and the new Power Macs "soon."
Seapine Software has released TestTrack Pro 5.0, its defect management solution that now includes an XSL-based reporting engine, graphical reports, automatic defect routing, additional help desk features, as well as administrative and usability enhancements. Other enhancements include new custom fields, quick links in the Web client list windows, administrative control over user display settings, a calendar control in the Web client, file attachment import via XML, and enhanced integration with Surround SCM, its cross-platform, client server source control. Special November pricing starts at $400 (50% off).
MacPlay today announced that The Operative: No One Lives Forever (Game of the Year Edition) has reached GM (Golden-Master) status and will begin shipping immediately along with a special Lounge CD featuring 1960s-inspired music. The first-person action-adventure offers gamers "the distinct style and locales of the fabulous 60's in a captivating story of espionage." The Game of the Year Edition offers 4 new levels and more firepower and also includes Multiplay for up to 16 players in good vs. Evil game mode or deathmatch mode. The title is $50 and runs on Mac OS X.
As noted by MacNN yesterday, The Seattle Times has confirmed that Apple plans to open its first store in Puget Sound area: "A spokesperson for Bellevue Square Managers, which operates the Eastside regional mall, confirmed that Apple has signed a lease for 4,600 square feet with an expectation to open the store as early as next summer."
Infoworld's latest issue has an article titled Switching by Choice, which talks about business user switch to Macs after using a PowerBook G4 with Mac OS X for two weeks: "Since I got back from my trip, I have continued to use the PowerBook G4 by choice. I hadn't reached for my ThinkPad again until I wrote a feature on notebooks, when I opened the ThinkPad, checked the model number, and closed it again. Without realizing it, I had switched. Maybe Apple's campaign isn't so ludicrous after all." Another article says that "the notebook market is being redefined, quite unexpectedly, by a system that looked like a niche player: the Apple PowerBook G4," which may not compare in benchmarks and specications, but performs "admirably" when running interactive applications.
Shell and Slate Software has filed suit against Adobe for "misappropriation of trade secrets and breach of contract concerning the Healing Brush texture-cloning tool included in Adobe Photoshop 7.0." The lawsuit was filed in Los Angeles in the Federal District Court on Monday, November 18. Shell and Slate, a technology firm with an emphasis on 2D graphics, develops intellectual property and algorithms for solving difficult problems in 2D imaging, which it makes available for licensing and integration.
WatchX is a shareware ($8) system utility that tracks changed folders on your hard disk and allows you to store the state of your system at a given instant, allowing users to track which files were added and where. HideMe is a $5 shareware to quickly hide (and password protect) specific folders. [WX, HM] MacTelligence has released Xnippets 1.1, a shareware ($18) replacement for Stickes or the NotePad that allows users to name their snippets, and categorize them into folders. It also uses Mac OS X's services to allow users to capture and retrieve text snippets. Version 1.1 has improved searching and find options, UI improvements, and offers export of multiple items to the clipboard. [526KB] iCalMIH 1.0 (iCal...Make It Happen) is a $20 application that allows users to schedule various system/application actions based on a custom iCal calendar. It can launch applications, open a URL, import an Outlook Exported calenar, and perform other actions. [Classic] [63KB] Boris FX 6.1.2 is an update to its integrated effects and compositing application with customizable preset effects, natural effects (snow, rain, and fire), explosive particles and fast blurs, realistic lighting filters, and advanced keying and color correction filters. It is available for Mac OS X, bringing compatibility with Jaguar. [form]
Apple Knowledge Base roundup: Apple has updated several articles on Inkwell handwriting technology in Jaguar (dubbed "Ink"), including Settings That Affect Handwriting Recognition, How to Write Return and Enter, Classic Does Not Work With Ink, and How to Write on the Desktop or in the Finder. Apple also acknowledges audio distortion when recording at 11KHz or 22KHz over USB, suggesting that users record at a different sample rate or use the sound input port as possible interim solutions.
Oregon Scientific has launched a new credit card-sized digital camera for $100. The compat camera (85.5mm x 54mm x 6mm) offers a USB-rechargeable, lithium polymer battery, SMaL's Autobrite technology for better exposure, and 8MB of internal memory that stores approximately 26 fine quality photos at VGA (640x480) resolution or 101 basic shots at QVGA (320x240) resolution. It is both PC and Mac compatible comes with a USB cable, protective leather carrying sleeve, hand-strap, and ArcSoft Photo-Impression CD-ROM bundled software. [site not updated]
FileMaker today announced it will offer four free Web services for FileMaker Pro 6 users in conjunction with Web developer ServiceObjects. The free services, available on FileMaker's Website, include Package Comparison (compare shipping costs among multiple carriers), Package Tracking (multiple carrier tracking), Address Validation, and Email Validation. All of the ServiceObjects' DOTS Web Services may be accessed 100 times per day. FileMaker Pro 6 users can also download free XSLT (Extensible Style Sheets) from its FileMaker XSLT Library, which allow for XML data exchange between FileMaker Pro 6 and specific XML based data sources.
Steve Dagley of Netscape notes that Internet Explorer is the only browser designed to work with Windows Media Player Plugin, leaving users of Chimera and other browsers in the dark: "Unfortunately no Mac OS X browser other than IE is capable of using this plugin as it appears that Microsoft implemented it in a non-standard manner. Rather than complaining to browser developers to add support for it, people should lobby Microsoft to release it as a standard plugin that all Mac OS X browser can use."
An interview with the 3ivx codec developer Happy Machines discusses the company's efforts to create a cross platform natural video encoder/decoder. It notes the upcoming (late November) release of 3ivx Delta 4 PR2, which it calls a "revolutionary faster decoder, plus a very fast high quality encoder, capable of producing ISO-MPEG-4 compliant video and decoding of most MPEG-4 variants in common use," and offers some comparisons to other codecs, including Apple's MPEG4 codec, DivX, XvID, Envivio, and MPEGABLE.
Publicspace has released A Better Finder Rename 5.0, an update to its $15 shareware Finder enhancement utility for Mac OS X. The contextual menu plugin for renmaing files adds the ability to create stand-alone droplet applications, support for 255 character file names, improved sorting, and an improved installer. [1.7MB] Conoa 3D 1.5 is an After Effects-compatible plug-in that adds 3D capability to many editors or compositors, including those systems that support After Effects-style plug-ins, such as Elastic Gasket from Profound Effects for Avid systems, Final Cut Pro and Combustion. The new version adds support for reflection mapping, bump mapping and support for Mac OS X. It is available for $50 off (coupon 'C3D02') the list price of $300 through December 16th. [475KB] Summary 2.3.1 is an update to Jason Linhart's $60 shareware server log analysis and traffic monitoring application. The Interesting Referrers report is now available in all versions; it also includes other bug fixes. It is available for Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X. [1.9MB] MacinMind Software has updated Passenger 2.2, bringing support for Mac OS X 10.2 Server and greater flexibility in formulations of usernames, short names and passwords and many other small enhancements. Passenger is a server account creation and password generation tool that will import tab and comma-delimited text, ASIP 6.3 and Mac OS X XML and create account information and passwords for a number of server applications. Pricing is $60 for 150 users and $90 for an unlimited version. [Classic, OSX] Conoa Sphere and Conoa Cube are now available for Mac OS X. Conoa Sphere wraps video onto a spherical shape and uses the Conoa raytracing engine to render the sphere with various material and lighting parameters and allows the user to position and rotate the sphere in 3D space, while Conoa Cube maps video onto the sides of cube. The plugins ($40 each) support Adobe After Effects, Final Cut Pro and Elastic Gasket for Avid and other systems that import AE-style plug-ins. A $10 discount is offered (with coupon 'CCS1102') through December 16th. Dog Park Software's MacDopplerPRO 1.8.4 is a satellite-tracking application. It now more clearly displays when satellites are eclipsed (in the 2D and 3D views), has a new "Living Earth Shale HiRez" map, and fixes a few bugs. It is $75. [Classic, OSX]
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Apple want ads hint at future Watch faces
An Apple job listing for a dedicated clock face team may suggest future fashion-brand partnerships, possibly in time for the updated watchOS updates that are likely to be revealed at this spring's Worldwide Developer Conference. Since the introduction of watchOS 2, there has only been four new watch faces, but three of them were left over from the first release, with only one truly new one -- the co-branded Herm√©s face exclusive to that edition. There is a rumored March 15 event, but if that takes place it will likely focus on new band options as regards the Apple Watch. http://apple.co/1O1TbTI
Microsoft may end Office Support Professional prog
Microsoft appears to be either ending or seriously revamping its "Accredited Support Professional Program" for training on Microsoft Office for Mac and iOS it has offered at MacTech conferences since 2013. The program is not on offer at the upcoming MacTech tour, which begins on March 16 in San Francisco and includes a number of other cities. Microsoft has released a statement that it is "evaluating options for 2016, but don't have anything to share at this time." http://bit.ly/1KDz3MQ
Office for Mac v15.18 released
Microsoft has issued an update for the Mac version of its productivity suite, Office 2016. The v15.18 update offers improvements for all of the included apps, such as bringing full screen support to Outlook and allowing Word to save PDF files to flash drives. In addition, a new selection pane has been added to PowerPoint and Excel for keeping track of objects, and shapes can now be added to OneNote notebook pages. The update is free for all users, but requires a Mac running OS X 10.10 or later and a valid Microsoft Office 365 subscription. http://bit.ly/1Q7pAzW
Apple to open new south Florida mall store
According to real estate trade papers in south Florida, Apple has signed a lease for a new retail space in Miami, at the forthcoming Brickell City Centre (yes, the UK spelling is used) open-air mall, which is set to open later this year. The center will feature a five-story shopping area, condominiums, a hotel and office buildings, along with a "climate ribbon" in the shopping area to keep visitors cool, eschewing traditional air conditioning. The exact location of the Apple Store within the plan is not yet clear, but the destination already boasts 75 confirmed stores. http://bit.ly/1Q7n7Wd
Filemaker provides free custom app guide
FileMaker announced today the release of the first in a three-part series of free how-to guides that will lead teams through the process of building a custom app using the FileMaker Platform. FileMaker's new how-to guides provide a step-by-step process that starts with a planning cycle covering goals, requirements, functionality and usability, and run all the way through identifying user scenarios, defining requirements, addressing integration, providing security, and deployment of the final product. http://bit.ly/1o08wQh
OCZ Trion 150 SSD shifts to 15nm TLC NAND
SSD manufacturer OCZ has updated its entry-level 2.5-inch Trion 100 SSD. The new Trion 150 has similar performance to the now replaced model, and now utilizes 15nm TLC NAND. Sequential read speeds top out at 550MB/S, with 4KB random write speeds running from 25K IOPS in the 120GB model, to 64K IOPS in the 960GB version of the drive. Endurance is limited to 30TB in the 120GB, and peaks at 240TB in the 960GB version. Retail prices vary between $46 for 120GB, to $270 for the 960GB version. http://bit.ly/1nVmlyL
Google off the hook in CAPTCHA labor suit
US District Jacqueline Scott Corley has dismissed a proposed class-action suit against Google, that alleged that Google secretly was given an economic gain without user knowledge. The suit alleged, correctly, that the second word in Google's CAPTCHA service was used as a crowd-sourced word identification for Google's book-scanning project. The judge ruled that the suit as filed had no facts to support a "reasonable consumer would expect to receive compensation" for the seconds it took to complete the form, and in addition, the free Gmail account provided more than offset any labor penalty incurred by the user. http://bit.ly/1o06Cir