MacAcademy today announced the return of the Learning Extravaganza, to be held in Orlando, FL. March 17-21, 2003. Back by popular request, the event offers four days of training, 64 workshops, and seven of the nation's leading instructors in their fields of expertise. It provides a variety of hard-to-find training workshops, such as Mac OS X 10.2, Excel, Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Flash, Final Cut Pro, Illustrator, and DVD Studio Pro.
Leaders from the Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Chicago and L.A. Final Cut Pro user groups will meet for the first time at the NYDV Show, Friday, January 31 beginning at 7:00 p.m. A number of New York-area FCP gurus are expected to deliver presentations and speeches. Over 400 Final Cut Pro users gathered at a similar event earlier this month, at Macworld Expo in San Francisco.
A new Apple retail outlet is among the stores planned for the new "Short Pump Town Center" mall in Richmond, Virginia. The mall, which was described by a local MacNN reader as "upscale" is expected to open this Fall. Other stores include Nordstrom, Crate & Barrel, and Pottery Barn.
Apple Knowledge Base notes: Mac OS X's Grab.app allows users to capture the screen's contents in the form of a PDF or TIFF file; Some Sony DFW-VL500 cameras may not register as connected when they are, in fact, connected to the computer's FireWire 800 port; Apple has outlined which Macintosh computers are available with built-in Bluetooth modules.
The 10GB iPod is again available for order, and is in stock at the Apple Store. Additionally, it is available as a BTO option on the new Power Macs. The 5GB model is no longer a BTO option for Power Mac buyers; it remains unavailable for individual order as well. The 22-inch Apple Cinema display -- which was discontinued today in favor of a new 20-inch model with more work space -- is still available at Apple retail stores nationwide for a discount price of $1500.
c|net reports tha Opera Software has "expressed significant doubts it will continue producing a browser for the Mac OS, echoing a growing problem for third-party Mac developers as Apple Computer steps up its own application development efforts."
Extensis today announced it is shipping Portfolio 6.1 for Mac OS X, its Digital Asset Management solution. In addition to adding Mac OS X compatibility, Portfolio 6.1 offers a redesigned user interface, adds a recently used catalogs menu, long filename support, and a new batch rename feature. It is available for immediate download and is a free update to registered Portfolio 6 users. Boxed versions are expected to ship on February 7, 2003 for $200. Version 5 customers can upgrade for $100.
PTHiTunesNotifier 2.1 adds the ability to disable the menu bar controller and a hotkey for toggling play/pause to the freeware application that pops up information about the currently playing track in iTunes. [281KB] SafariTabs 1.0 allows users to launch several bookmarks groups. The transparent launcher located in top-left corner of the desktop. The $15 shareware allows users to open Safari's windows from grouped bookmarks. It offers drag & drop support, the ability to create new bookmarks categories, add new bookmarks in the defined categories, and to modify the existing bookmarks. [268KB] MacWise 10.3 allows a Macintosh to be used as a terminal -- connected to a host computer directly, by modem, or over the Internet. The emulators support video attributes such as dim, reverse, underline, 132-column modes, and graphic characters sent from the host computer, as well as enhanced Viewpoint mode. It emulates ADDS Viewpoint, Wyse 50, Wyse 60, Wyse 370, Televideo TV 925, DEC VT100 and Prism terminals. It is $95 and available for Mac OS X. [1.7MB] LabanWriter 4.4 is a free graphical notation editor for Laban Movement Notation. Labanotation can be used for recording dances, or any type of movement in written form. This version adds a new tool for creating spirals, and the ability to zoom in and out of a score while working. It runs under Mac OS 8/9/X. [1.3MB] Unsanity has updated WindowShade X 2.1.2, the $7 shareware utility that brings back the classic window shade function to Mac OS X. The minor update fixes several bugs including X11 compatibility. [1.1MB]
Iogear today debuted its palm-sized USB print server, which users on a network to share a USB printer capable of printing standard or tabloid-sized documents. The printer server integrates Internet Printing Protocol (IPP) to allow users to print from any computer over a LAN/WAN (Local Area Network/Wide Area Network) or the Internet by specifying the device's URL. It also supports multiple protocols (IPX, TCP/IP, Netbuei, AppleTalk, lpr, SMB) and incoporates a built-in Web management to configure, monitor and reset the printer. The USB device has an auto-sensing 10/100Base-T port. Update: IOGEAR let us the know the device is available now for $90. [updated]
Secure.CC today announced eShox 1.3.2 (as well as mShox 1.3.2). The single-app ecommerce solution features a new Safari store interface theme, mproved shop/admin interfaces (includng one-step process for adding shop products and improved multi-manufacturer and multi-product interfaces), view/print invoice options for customers, compatibility with Mac OS X Server 10.2, support for Canada Post and UPS Canada shipping carriers, and other bug fixes and optimizations. eShox is a storefront solution for Mac OS X, while mShox is a music industry-specific version. A discounted introductory price of $300 for each product is still available.
Some notes on the updated Power Mac G4s: The only Mac OS 9 bootable machine is an older Dual 1.25GHz PowerPC G4 (with 2MB of DDR L3 cache per processor) for $2,499. It is available at the Apple Store. All the Power Macs are pre-installed with (and only run) Mac OS X. All models are "Bluetooth ready" and require a $50 Apple Bluetooth module for full functionality All 3 models feature 64MB of GPU memory. The Radeon 9700 Pro is available as a BTO option, but is listed as "coming soon" for an additional $300. The Nvidia GeForce4 Titanium with 128MB is available now as a $300 BTO option. The high-end dual-1.42GHz model features 2MB of DDR SDRAM per processor versus 1MB on each of the lower-end models. An updated SuperDrive (DVD-R/CD-RW) writes DVD-R discs at 4x speed, reads DVDs at 8x speed, and has a 16x/8x/32x mechanism (vs. 2x/6x DVD-R and 8x/4x/24x CD-RW in previous SuperDrive models). Only the high-end model is equipped with a SuperDrive (where as the top 2 previous models featured a SuperDrive). It is available as a $200 BTO option. Ultra160 SCSI drives are no longer available as a BTO option on Power Macs, however, Ultra SCSI PCI card is a $50 option. A new 180GB Ultra ATA option is available as a $150 upgrade from the 120GB drive.
With Enterprise Pty Ltd has announced the immediate release of Witango 5 for Mac OS X (based on Pervasive's Tango codebase). Witango 5's visual programming interface allows developers to quickly build sophisticated web applications that connect web sites to databases. It offers full support for ODBC and supports the native Oracle Call Interface and "will be joined by Witango 5 FileMaker Server for Mac OS X as soon as possible in 2003." Witango outputs XML files, runs in full pre-emptive multitasking mode, offers mail integration (POP3, IMAP4 and SMTP), features XML web services, includes enhanced debugging, incorporates expanded error reporting options, and optimizes variable handling. Prices starts at $600, while upgrades are $415. A free demo is available.
Brother today announced it previewed new color flatbed Multi-Function Center (MFC) models at this month's 2003 International Consumer Electronics Show. The 6-in-1 models feature color inkjet printing, color copying, color scanning, color faxing, PC faxing, and PhotoCapture functions as well as other functions.
Interarchy 6.1 is an update to the $45 shareware file transfer utility, bringing Rendezvous support, an improved installer, SFTP set permissions fixes, and other enhancements. Math Game House has released iStorm 2.0, an update to its group collaboration application. Version 2.0 features a built-in TeX interface and Math Processor, as well as the full-color shared chalkboard for group collaboration. The Math and TeX interface sport intelligent in-line substitution mode, which enables users to type an expression and see it replaced by TeX equation or the answer by a single key stroke. It is $20. [full, upgrade] iChalk 2.0, an Internet-enabled chalkboard for Mac OS X, now supports full color. iChalk also offers a simple chat system, and an innovative tracing. It also allows users to export the chalkboard images as JPEG file and also to a QuickTime movie file. The $10 shareware runs on Mac OS X. [2.6MB] WGA Technologies today released Mac OS version of its authentication client for FireBox firewall systems for large and medium range corporative LANs. WGA Client 1.0 for Macs, an alternative to the Java-based clients, provides the same major features as WGA Version 2 for Windows and supports Mac OS X and Classic Mac OS. A demo is available online. [417KB] Erich Rast has released an update to his $15 shareware password management tool: ForgotIt? 1.4 is a multi-document application for managing passwords and Internet addresses, using strong Blowfish and AES (Rijndael) encryption to protect password lists and can also optionally launch URLs that belong to a password entry. Version 1.4 features better security, cleartext export options, UI enhancements, and other enhancements. [Classic, OSX] Tess 1.50 is a $35 Classic Mac application for exploring the mathematics of tessellations and for creating symmetric illustrations. Version 1.50 for Mac OS 7/8/9 offers 3D viewing modes using OpenGL: "you can now see your illustrations on tori, cylinders, and planes embedded in three dimensions. The geometries of the surfaces used are mathematically connected to the symmetries of the illustration." [672KB]
Apple today introduced the 20-inch Apple Cinema Display, a wide-format active-matrix LCD with 1680x1050 pixel resolution for $1,300. Apple says it provides more work area than Apple's previous 22-inch Cinema Display. Apple also dramatically reduced the price of its 23-inch Cinema HD Display, with 1920x1200 pixel resolution from $3,500 to $2,000 and also reduced the price of its 17-inch Studio Display, providing 1280x1024 pixels, from $1000 to $700.
Apple today announced speed-bumped Power Mac G4s, featuring up to dual-1.42 GHz PowerPC G4 processors. The updated Power Macs also feature FireWire 800 and offer internal support for 54Mbps AirPort Extreme and Bluetooth wireless networking. Based on Apple's Xserve (up to 2MB of DDR Level 3 cache and 333 MHz DDR memory), the new Macs offer up to 21 gigaflops (21 billion floating point operations per second) of performance. The Macs bundle both iLife and QuickBooks for Mac New User Edition. The 1GHz Power Mac G4 ($1,500) and dual-1.25GHz Power Mac G4 ($2,000) are available now, while the dual-1.42GHz Power Mac G4 ($2,700) will be available starting next month. single 1GHz G4/133MHz bus/256MB PC2100/60GB/Combo drive/Nvidia GeForce4 MX -- $1,500. dual-1.25GHz G4/167MHz bus/256MB PC2700/80GB/Combo drive/ATI Radeon 9000 Pro -- $2,000 dual-1.42GHz G4/167MHz bus/512MB PC2700/120GB/SuperDrive/ATI Radeon 9000 Pro -- $2,700
The $100 professional for photomanipulation software MacBibble 3.0 is now completely multithreaded and Altivec-optimized, offering speeds up to 10 faster than the other manufacturers' software when converting raw files under OS X. Version 3.0 also offers support for Nikon D1/X/H/100, Fuji S2, Olympus E10/E20 and Kodak 720x/760 cameras, live previews, persistent options via image-based preference files, remembered window positions, an improved image browser, Photoshop integration, IPTC captioning, and batch processing. [3.0MB] Spiny has released Xbench 1.0, an update to the benchmarking utility for Mac OS X: "Xbench is useful not only for comparing the relative speeds of two different Macintoshes, but also for optimizing performance on a single machine. Xbench is accompanied by a website that allows graphical side-by-side comparison of any out of thousands of submitted benchmarks." [264KB] Biorhythms 9 is an update to the biorhythm program for Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X. New features include: circadian rhythms, Intuition cycle, Advanced/Simple mode, enhanced Calendars and Comparisons, plus comprehensive help. It is $25, while upgrades are $15 for all registered users. [1.6MB] David Feldman has updated iWebCal 1.05 for compatibility with iCal 1.02, allowing users to publish iCal files on the Web without using a WebDAV server or a .Mac account. The PHP-based files allow users to view any iCal 1.02 calendar file via standard Web server. It is open-source and is compatible only with Mac OS X. [form]
Adobe has released a Photoshop 7.0.x AltiVecCore Update plug-in, which enhances the reliability of Adobe Photoshop 7.0.x software running on a Mac OS X that uses the G4 processor: "It does not replace the AltiVecCore plug-in installed in the Plug-Ins:Adobe Photoshop Only:Extensions folder. Both the AltiVecCore and AltiVecCore Update plug-ins should be present in that folder for optimum performance on the G4 processor." [12KB]
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Apple brings iTunes Movie Trailers app to Canada
After five years, Apple has expanded its iTunes Movie Trailers app for iOS to Canada. As of Saturday, the free app allows movie buffs to see HD movie trailers for new studio and independent features, and explore some other movie-related extras such as photos, behind-the-scenes footage, or clips from upcoming films. Users can save trailers for quick access, read reviews from RottenTomatoes.com within the app, use AirPlay to send them to an Apple TV, share trailers, and peruse the top movie charts. http://apple.co/1UUKtwr
Apple expands CloudKit API, provides web interface
On Friday, Apple notified developers that it was expanding a feature of CloudKit to allow for server-to-server web service requests. "In addition to providing a web interface for users to access the same data as your app, you can now easily read and write to the CloudKit public database from a server-side process or script with a server-to-server key," Apple said in its announcement. Previously, interaction with the CloudKit public database was limited to apps and web only. http://apple.co/20h1RwP
Remote S for Tesla Apple Watch app drives car out
Developer Allen Wong has created the Remote S for Tesla app, which can be used to remotely activate the Model S electric car via an Apple Watch, and drive it a short distance. Aside from providing data about the car and some basic function controls, the unofficial app uses the manufacturer's Summon command to allow the car to turn on, exit the garage, and park near to the user's location. The app is available to purchase from the App Store for $10. http://apple.co/1PprF4t
Seagate 3TB unreliability suit expands
The Seagate 3TB class-action hard drive lawsuit has been expanded to more devices. The expanded suit, filed today, now includes Seagate's Barracuda 3TB Hard Disk Drive, Desktop HDD 3TB, Backup Plus 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, GoFlex 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, or any other Seagate hard drive with model number ST3000DM001. The law firm, Hagens Berman, is seeking information from consumers such as time in service, purchase price, and the nature of any drive received in return from Seagate as a replacement for a failed unit. http://bit.ly/1Pc34Cq
BlackBerry Canada, Florida hit with layoffs
The BlackBerry campus has reportedly been wracked with layoffs. Sources familiar with the company's Waterloo office staffing claim that close to 35 percent of the local workforce has been laid off, with the deepest cuts being made in the BlackBerry 10 OS and hardware teams. Additionally, the state of Florida has been officially notified that the company's Sunrise facility will see 75 people fired. Enthusiast site Mobilesyrup puts the layoffs at around 1000 total. http://bit.ly/1Pc1Rep
Instagram tests multiple account support for iOS
Instagram is trialling support for multiple accounts in its iPhone app with a small number of users. The Facebook-owned photo sharing service confirmed the reports of the tests to TechCrunch, which will allow a single user to manage more than a single account within the app, transferring between two or three accounts with a few taps. It is unclear when the feature will roll out to the public, but it has previously tested it with the Android version of the app since November. http://tcrn.ch/1SPKEKh
Foxconn CEO declares Sharp deal near done
The Foxconn bid for Sharp is allegedly only waiting on specific details of the deal. Foxconn CEO Terry Gou has declared that his company has privileged negotiation rights for the Apple iPhone screen supplier, saying that "we have a consensus, the rest is a process ... I don't see a problem completing this process." Gou hopes the deal, worth up to $5.6 billion, will be formalized by the end of February. http://reut.rs/1SPEQjN