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Brother recently released updated (version 1.2.2) printer drivers for Mac OS X. [Download - 5.7MB] Temponautics has released FAQtor 1.1, an update to its freeware word-processing tool for creating, editing and saving "FAQ" (Frequently Asked Questions) documents. It exports to HTML, XML and a proprietary format. FAQtor makes it easy to maintain a database of frequently asked questions. Version 1.1 adds support for Mac OS X, multiple levels of undo, better sorting of topics and questions, better HTML output, improved user interface and includes fixes for all known bugs. [Download - Classic, OS X] FLaunch 1.1 allows the user to assign function keys or a function key along with modifier keys to any application, folder, drive, AppleScript, e-mail address, or URL. Each function key may be assigned up to four items. "This makes it quite easy to open a suite of files without a bunch of clicking," says developer Pariahware. FLaunch comes with a 30-day trial and costs $5 to register. [Download - 1.4MB] LAJ Design today announced the release of DropWaterMark 1.1, which adds advanced watermarking (image-on-image), more border options, and bug fixes to the cross-platform application for creating watermarked images. DropWaterMark has four basic modes: replace image, new image, replace folder of images, new folder of images. DropWaterMark is shareware software, and costs $13 to purchase. [Download - Classic, OS X]
PCMagazine has published a largely positive review of Apple's iLife suite, saying that the computer maker "takes another step toward making the Mac work with a variety of digital entertainment options-what the company refers to as its digital hub strategy." Reviewer Troy Dreier expresses overall satisfaction with the suite, giving it a 4/5 rating, but notes that "playback wasn't smooth on [a] 933-MHz G4 test system when displaying multiple video clips," and the application "crashed once during testing, causing us to lose unsaved changes." The review calls for the following: iPhoto should have more templates and be able to have photo libraries on external drives; iDVD would benefit from VCD or SVCD creation; the suite would benefit from iPhoto integration, for tasks such as CD label creation.
DMOD, a provider of secure workflow and distribution solutions, announced today WorkSpace 2.5, a significant update to its media production software for Mac OS X. WorkSpace "streamlines the media production process and provides content owners and creators with tighter control over their digital assets." Version 2.5 offers enhanced media playback capabilities, support for QuickTime 6 (including MPEG-2 and MPEG-4), encrypted media bundle creation, and browser-based access. WorkSpace 2.5 client/server is priced starting at $17,500 per year for one server and five client seats. Maintenance and support are additional.
Apple has informed educators participating in its "iLife and Keynote" bundle promotion that due to the overwhelming success of the $15 offer, the company is having trouble fulfilling all orders. A response from Apple to MacNN reader Dan Mahn was supposed to include the date that Apple would "have iLife and Keynote available," but curiously this information was absent. The response did, however, indicate that customers should expect an "order processed" e-mail from Apple "within two days of this date."
Alias|Wavefront's Maya is Software was used in the creation of three of the short-listed for an Oscar in the "Best Visual Effects" category by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, according to the Toronto-based developer. Winners will be announced at the annual Academy Awards presentation on March 23, 2003, at the Kodak Theater in Hollywood. On March 1, 2003 Alias|Wavefront will be awarded an Oscar for Scientific and Technical Achievement for the development of Maya software, the professional 3D animation and effects package. Maya is available for Mac OS X, among many other popular platforms.
NetNewsWire 1.02 is a free RSS news reader for web sites that presents a familiar three-paned interface to display websites and their news. NetNewsWire Pro 1.0 ($30) includes a Weblog Editor, which allows users to post to Radio, Blogger, Movable Type, and other types of weblogs. It also features a Notepad (to take notes and store headlines, subscriptions, URLs, and files), a Find command for keywords in headlines, AppleScript support, and cached headlines for off-line reading. [Lite, Pro] Everyday Software's new Mac OS X application, One Key, is a launcher designed to work with the Mac's F-Keys. The $5 shareware preference pane can open applications, documents, scripts and other items with a single custom F-key keystroke. [104KB] The freeware Show Desktop 1.5 adds the ability to exclude specified applications from being hidden when Show Desktop is invoked. It also contains several other enhancements and bug fixes. Show Desktop is a small application that hides all running applications and switches to the Finder when activated. It may be placed in the menu bar as a system wide menu or run from the dock. [126KB] RagTime 5.6b2 for Mac OS X 10.2 is a business publishing application that offers the ability to process text, create tables and illustrations, draw pictures and build graphs as well as use spreadsheets. A public beta is available with the application, dictionaries for spell checking and hyphenation and documentation. It is available in English, French, Dutch, German and German (Swiss). The final version is due in March starting at 99 Euro. [52MB]
SearchWebServices.com writes: "Apple has quietly taken some tentative steps towards developing Web services technology, notably with its WebObjects application development environment. And the long-popular FileMaker database, with a strong and loyal following of Mac aficionados, may well be a backdoor way for Apple to make inroads into Web services market as well."
In a limited-time offer, Media 100 is offering Final Effects Complete for OS X and OMF Exchange for free with any purchase of Media 100 i/xs, Media 100 i/xr, and Media i/lx system. It is also offering a savings of $100 on Final Effects Complete for Mac OS X, its popular effects plug-in package for Adobe After Effects (also compatible with Boris FX, Boris RED and Final Cut Pro 3). All offers expire February 21st.
MacNN reader Dave West writes about Apple Pro Mice failures at his production facility in Utah. The Apple Support forums suggest that Apple may have recently redesigned the cable on the Apple Pro mouse to solve some problems that other users were experience; other posts suggest that switching USB ports--on either the keyboard or CPU--may solve the problem. Readers have apparently used the Mac OS X USB Software Debug Kit to help track down problems, while another posting notes that updating USB Extension in Mac OS 9 reduced the occurence of the problem on his machine.
Tenon's Post.Office 3.5.3v717 adds a new web-based mail client, WebEdge 3.6, to its mail server and list server for Mac OS X. This enhanced version of its scalable SMTP/POP3/IMAP messaging server designed to meet the needs of small and mid-sized ISPs also adds SPAM filtering extensions and IMAP improvements. The new WebEdge supports both POP and IMAP, includes a spell checker, an address book, a calendar, and customizable HTML templates. A starter package is available for $300, supporting 100 mailboxes and 10 lists (with additional blocks of 100 for $150). WebEdge is a $500 option. For 10 accounts or less, both Post.Office and WebEdge are free.
PDF Sages and Apago have updated PDF Enhancer 1.01, their PDF compression and optimization utility. It runs up to 500% faster and builds upon the product's unique "targeted optimization" technology with enhancements specific to documents from prepress and print-oriented workflows as well as documents containing Acrobat Forms. PDF Enhancer repairs many types of errors or damage in the document while reducing them by as much as 90%. Users can optionally apply security and linearization to their documents as well. Version 1.01 also now reports exactly what changes were made to the PDF documents during processing. It is available in Standard ($180), Professional ($250), and Server ($1000) versions. [desktop, server]
mTrading 1.0 is a desktop companion for investors, allowing users to manage stocks and multiple portfolios as well as manage and update datas via online sources and displays grids based on historical prices as well as custom charts. The $30 application is available for Mac OS X only. [1.2MB] Melonsoft has released Exhibit 1.0, a $15 shareware HTML photo gallery creation application. Features include the ability to scale down images by percentage, specify a number of thumbnails to display on each index page, and use custom HTML templates. [Classic, OSX] RAILhead Design's Wednesday's List v1.2.0 is designed to help comic book collectors view, manage, print, and save customized new and upcoming comic book release pull lists. It can also export custom lists to iCal. It adds email support, improved save/print functions, contextual menu support, and other enhancements. The $7 shareware is for Mac OS X only. httpmail plugin 1.4 is a plugin for Mail.app that adds the httpmail protocol, allowing the application to download email from the Hotmail service. [220KB] KisMAC 0.3b is an open-source wireless network utilty that allows users to monitor for hidden networks: "KisMAC is unique to Mac OS X in that it is the only stumbler that will detect hidden networks and put an Airport card into monitoring mode. This enables the airport card to be completely passive while detecting networks." [2.4MB] DropWaterMark 1.1 adds the ability to mark an image on an image, the ability to add borders to your watermark, and other optimizations and bug fixes to the $13 image watermarking utility from LAJ Design. [Classic, OSX]
Google was voted "brand of the year" by branding junkies with 15 percent of the vote, while Apple was second, beating out giants such as Coca-Cola and Starbucks to the top slot. The respondents, who were described as "above averagely intelligent" professionals and students from over 72 countries, were asked which brand had made the most impact on their lives in 2002, either positively or negatively.
Apple's 12-inch Aluminum PowerBook developer note describes the new laptop, including the internal logic and custom ICs, the I/O ports and built-in I/O devices, the expansion features, and the system software. [pdf]
FirewireDirect has revamped its line of FireWire/USB 2.0 CD-RW drives to include the "fastest mechanisms in the industry," its lowest-ever price points, and a unique "Choose You Own CD Software" option that allows buyers to order their CD-RW drive with one of four CD burning software packages (Toast, Easy CD Creator, Instant CD/DVD or Discribe).†The peripheral maker is consolidating its product line into two write speeds -- 48x and 52x with either FireWire-only or a combo USB 2.0/FireWire interface.†The FirewireDirect CD Series starts at $150 for a 52X FireWire external CD-RW, while, buyers can select 2 programs for an additional $30.
IOPlus has announced the availability of its PocketDisk, a compact and portable mass storage disk available in several memory configurations ranging from 16MB ($23) to 512MB ($330). The USB-based device uses solid-state technology (i.e., no moving parts), does not require any drives, supports USB harddisk booting, offers password protection, and has a built-in write protection switch to prevent files from being overwritten.
Mozilla 1.3b is the latest version of the open-source browser, bringing image auto sizing, junk-mail classification, dynamic profile switching, new 'Find as you type' preferences, an editable about:config listing, and a new research project to :apply machine learning to improve the browser's autocomplete feature. The free browser is available for Mac OS X only. [14.9MB] SpamSieve 1.3 brings powerful Bayesian spam filtering to non-Mail.app e-mail clients. Version 1.3 uses Address Book entries as a "whitelist", improves memory usage and application startup/quit times, can save false negatives for bug reporting, adds type-ahead navigation, and other improvements. It is $20 shareware for Mac OS X 10.1 or later. [1.5MB] Maxprog's iCash is a $25 shareware personal finance and money manager designed to track incomes, expenses, credits, debts and banks transactions. It offers unlimited categories, multiple account creation, a SQL backend engine, password protection, export/import routines, search functions, and drag & drop support. [Classic, OSX] The $40 illustration application for Mac OS X, iDraw 1.3, features updated and more powerful shape creation tools, adding the ability to create angle-defined arcs as well as rounded rectangles. Other updates include an improved pen tool and custom units for document and grid rulers. It features vector drawing tools, translucent color and gradient support, and object transformations as well as other advanced animation functions. [592KB] Free Ruler 1.5 is a significant new upgrade to the free screen ruler for Mac OS X. It allows users to measure objects on screen in pixels, inches, picas, and cm. New in version 1.5 is the number one user request, shadowless rulers, and various other improvements. [1.1MB] Blackmagic Design has released Blackmagic Deck Control, a new application for remote control of broadcast tape decks, allowing users to capture and playback to anybroadcast tape deck via RS422 serial control with frame accurate precision. Blackmagic Deck Control contains all the functionality to allow DVD authoring using the company's $1000 10-bit uncompressed video PCI card, DeckLink. The free software is now available as a public beta.
The UK Lasso Association will hold its first Web development conference in May 2003 where conference attendees "will have an opportunity to increase their knowledge of Web application development and to see first-hand the latest technologies available for development groups, while working with technology trend-setters from around the world. Speakers for the conference include Lasso team leaders Blueworld CEO Bill Doerrfeld and Lasso architect Kyle Jessup. The UKLA Development Conference 2003 will be held May 14 and 15 in Norfolk, England. [site unresponsive; no pricing available]
Microsoft's Macintosh Business Unit today will announce plans to offer enhanced functionality between Entourage X for Mac -- the company's e-mail and personal information manager (PIM) for Mac OS X -- and Microsoft Exchange Server, its enterprise server designed to meet the messaging and collaboration needs of small organizations and larger enterprises.
Apple eliminated 260 positions in the last three months of last year as it closed manufacturing operations in Singapore and shifted strategy in its PowerSchool education unit, the company disclosed in a regulatory filing Monday, according to c|net.
America Online has posted AOL for Mac OS X plus Build 200 B which adds support for Internet Access Controls, extending AOL Parental Control protection when using an external browser or Internet application. Additionally, the Welcome screen renders all HTML properly and the IM window adds support for the "Your buddy is typing." message. Future builds will include support for auto mail-refresh, visually different read/unread messages, mail categories (i.e., view filters), voice mail, email away messages, spam reporting, new buddy icons, and new emoticons. It is available via Keyword: beta. Ultralingua Dictionaries 4.2 are professional grade dictionaries (both bilingual and monolingual). Version 4.2 offers additional database entries, two new language modules (Norwegian-English and Latin-English), improved indexing, cosmetic improvements, and integration with other applications via Mac OS X Services. The Ultralingua English Dictionary and Thesaurus is $25. [6.6MB] Steve Becker has released WebPrint Plus X 1.5 for OS X, which provides a set of universal tools for collecting, saving, printing, and editing information on the Web and in other applications. Version 1.5 offers background-only operation, automatic placement adjustment on low-resolution monitors, a new Help menu, and other enhancements. The $30 application is available as a 30-day demo. [1.2MB] Alessandro Levi Montalcini's USB Overdrive X 10.2.1 update resolves a problem with USB-based UPS devices. The $20 driver handles any USB mouse, trackball, joystick and gamepad from any manufacturer and lets you configure them either globally or on a per-application basis. [475KB]
Now AAPL Stock: 93.99 ( + 0.29 )
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