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MacNN reader Bruce Payan reports that Intuit will not begin shipping the Canadian edition of QuickTax for the Mac until February 28. Originally, the suite had been promised for late January, but an Intuit representative confirmed the delay today. Mr. Payan notes that the RRSP deadline in Canada is Monday, March 3rd, and as a result, "[Canadian] Mac users will find the RRSP Wizard completely useless." Additionally, the Macintosh version of the software is $20 more than its PC counterpart. "Mac users are paying a premium price for this?" asks Payan.
Ron Yochum reports that while Kyocera does not publicly state that its printers, copiers and scanners are Mac OS X-compatible, the company is actively supporting Mac OS X. "We acquired a Kyocera 3530 digital copier/fax/printer/scanner and use it with our installed base of OS X computers," says Mr. Yochum, "Kyocera diligently worked with us over the last year to ensure that the copiers functions (duplexing, stapling, hole punching, etc.) work with OS X." It is not clear when Kyocera will detail its compatibility efforts to the public.
ZDNet Australia says Apple's smallest notebook is a little heavy, and somewhat "light on features," but it still "packs an appealing punch." The review praises the "pleasantly surprising" keyboard: "A good touch-typist can really fly on this brushed-metal-looking keyboard, which offers good response, has comfortably shaped keys, and does not flex at all. Despite the 10.9-inch width of the PowerBook, the keyboard is full sized in both the distance between the center of the keys and in the travel." On the other hand, reviewer John Rizzo says Apple offers a "somewhat stingy," one-year warranty on the 12-inch PowerBook's parts and labor -- "an increasingly common standard on both sides of the platform fence."
FileMaker describes a potential file corruption problem that occurs when FileMaker Server 5.5 is shutdown before hosted files are closed. Damaged files will result in an entry in the Events.log file similar to the following: "File 'filename.fp5' close error: database may be damaged; try opening it in FileMaker Pro. (10001)." A workaround is provided.
Vue d'Esprit 4.12 adds several compatibility improvements to e-on software's 3D scenery generator for Mac OS X. The update improves Mac OS X support for OBJ files, 3DS files, and various Mac OS X 'Jaguar' compatibility enhancements. The Vue d'Esprit 4.12 updater is available free to registered users and can be downloaded from the e-on software Web site. [Web site unavailable] ALAP yesterday updated its XPert Align, XPert Layers, and XPert Scale QuarkXPress add-ons to version 2.0.1. XPert Align provides a visual method for aligning items with other items or on the page; XPert Layers offers an easy method for locating, selecting and modifying layered items on pages; XPert Scale lets you scale QuarkXPress documents, items, groups and contents similar to the way drawing programs scale objects; each retails for $80. [XPA , XPL, XPS ] ALAP has updated its Imposer ($250)/Imposer Pro ($400) software to version 2.5.1. The update contains fixes to some known issues and is available free-of-charge to existing customers of Imposer 2.x and Imposer Pro, ALAP's imposition XTensions for QuarkXPress. [IMP , IMP Pro] ContactCreator is a service for Mac OS X that enables the user to add any selected text as a contact in the Address Book. [75KB] CarraFix is a free program that brings bandwidth throttling, traffic shaping and Quality-Of-Service management tools to Mac OS X. It includes a number of "efficient ways" to improve your connection throughput in both download and upload, by offering the ability to manage bandwidth per IP or per flow, and the option to display upload rate to each user and set a default priority for each login, for file-sharing applications. Version 2.5 allows unlimited custom Service/Port creation. [2.6MB]
Apple has released Mac OS X 10.2.4 via the software update control panel (as a 41MB download). It "delivers enhanced functionality and improved reliability for the following applications, services and technologies: Address Book, Classic compatibility, Finder, FireWire, Graphics, OpenGL, and Sherlock. It includes AFP and Windows file service improvements, as well as audio, disc recording, graphics, and printing improvements." The online documentation has a more extensive list of changes in the update. [updated]
Miglia is now shipping its MiniBank MT-II, a unique external aluminium 2.5" hard drive case with FireWire as well as new USB 2.0 connectivity. It features a high speed Oxford 911 FireWire bridge board, is bus-powered, and supports all recent 2.5" drives with a height of up to 12.5mm. The $120 case ships with both FireWire and USB cables and carries a 2 year warranty.
Charismac Engineering has begun shipping its Nitro 250, a high-performance FireWire (1394) drive which features a high-speed 7200 RPM, 250GB drive, Oxford 911 bridgeboard technology and includes the Anubis Utility products for both Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X. The external drive carries a 1 year warranty and costs $540, but is available for a limited time for $500 directly from Charismac.
Epson today launched a web-based Epson Recycle Program geared toward people who do not have convenient locations to drop off electronics for recycling. Participants will pay $10 per product to cover the cost of shipping and recycling eligible Epson hardware. In return, the customer will receive a $5 electronic coupon that can be used on a future purchase at the Epson Store. The recycle package includes a prepaid shipping UPS label for returning the hardware to a licensed recycling facility where components are shredded, then separated for reuse. Individuals, businesses or organizations may recycle up to 10 products at a time.
Wall Street Journal technology columnists Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher will co-produce a new executive conference focused "on the impact of digital technology in every sector of the economy and every walk of life." D: All Things Digital will take place in San Diego May 27 - 29, 2003 and is described as "series of unscripted, unfettered Wall Street Journal interviews, live on stage, with the leaders of the digital revolution." Executives will include Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Steve Case, Google's founders, Jack Valenti, and Charles Schwab CEO David Pottruck as well as other sports franchise owners. The small, intimate conference (about 300 guests) will cost $2,500 for early registration.
Sven Kotting of (cionix GmbH) writes about a Samba bug in Mac OS X: "Apple's implementation of Samba 2.2.3 in Mac OS X Server up to version 10.2.3 is responsible for triplicating invisible Mac files under certain circumstances. (See Apple KB Article 107325 and post to Samba list). Files that get copied to directories that are shared via AFP and SMB on a Mac OS X Server, will when accessed by a Windows 2000 Server (Service Pack 2 and 3 tested) running Services for Macintosh be triplicated after the copy procedure is finished. When using a Samba Version 2.2.7 on Mac OS X Server the problem is fixed, but all user interface control over Samba is lost as well as integration with Apple's Password Server and Netinfo user administration."
Formac today announced an upgrade program for Studio dv/tv, its FireWire media converter. Formac's upgrade program will allow the devices to take full advantage of iMovie 3 and adds digital audio recording capability with up to 48Khz at 16-bit. Owners of Formac's latest version of Studio dv/tv, equipped with an EPROM version of 1.06 or higher, can upgrade their device for free by downloading Formacís new software package. An upgrade program for earlier versions is $50.
Apple has again updated its Mac OS X-only Mac list, adding the updated iMacs to list of Macs that "will start up only in Mac OS X. These computers can run Classic, but they do not start up in Mac OS 9." Flat-panel iMacs with a serial number after 'xx305xxxxxx' and the new 1GHz 17" FP iMac are not able to boot Mac OS 9. (The new Aluminum PowerBooks and FireWire 800 Power Mac G4 also do not boot Mac OS 9.)
BusinessWeek Online says that Apple has "a big problem with independent Mac dealers," and calls for their elimination/termination when "they're too close to Apple Stores," however, it calls for better Mac support in other regions: "In areas where it doesn't plan to build an outlet, Apple needs to shore up the indies. Traditionally, it has largely left these folks to fend for themselves. If Apple wants to get a bigger bang for its buck, it should invest more in training and monitoring the local resellers. Then, if they're still underperforming, cut them loose. Now that Apple has taken a stronger stance toward defending and extending its brand, this should apply everywhere in the retail chain."
Modeless Software's Liquid Ledger 1.1 is an update to the Cocoa-based personal finance solution for Mac OS X, adding new functions to import financial data from Intuit Quicken as well as introduces support for the Open Financial Exchange specification, enabling users to import financial activity from a wide range of financial institutions. Version 1.1 also has better import functions to prevent duplicate transactions. The Mac OS X-only software is $45. [1.3MB] RecEnroll 1.2 adds Web-based self-registration, new integrated product sales support and expanded administrative reporting to the application for administering recreation programs. RecEnroll manages class schedules, brochures, rosters and waiting lists, tracks instructor and other payments, produces administrative reports and connects remote offices with the central office. It is developed in 4th Dimension and runs on Mac OS 8/9/X. Pricing starts at $2,250 for up to 3-users. Pariahware's Contact This 2.2 is a shareware ($15) application for importing and maintaining contact data. It can import the contacts from Entourage (Classic), Outlook (Mac and Windows), and Outlook Express (Mac and Windows) and can also export .VCF files to your iPod. The update has a better Mac OS X look and feel, stability improvements, native date fields, and improves the filter. [1.4MB] Alepin 2.3 is a notepad and scrapbook replacement for Mac OS X. It features Classic Notepad import, Stickies X import, file import/export, autosave and auto-open, as well as many other features. The update now can import Text, RTF, RTFD and HTML (limited to mostly text), supports URL drag & drop, has better URL detection, offers new preferences, and brings other enhancements. The $10 shareware runs on Mac OS X. [444KB] Soft Solutions announced 4-Sight Fax 5.0.4r2 as well as the general release of its API kit and the upcoming beta release of its AppleScript Developer kit. The Applescript Developer kit will be available as a beta beginning on February 17th, while the OS X Applescript Developer kit is currently in development. The new cross-platform API allows developers to create custom fax clients and tools. Version 5.0.4r2 also includes end-user customization options with the Fax Forward to Email feature and features improved handling of Apple's TextEdit and Preview documents. Maki Enterprise has released Kids GoGoGo 6.7, bringing improved application-restriction functions, better support for Safari, support for browser selection in the CheckHistory function, improved filtering, and an extended trial period. The $30 web filtering software offers both content-based and URL-based limitations as well as other application access controls. [Classic, OSX] Mireth Technology has launched MacMP3CD, which allows you to burn and to play MP3 CDs (up to 10 hours of music on a single CD; MP3 CDs are playable on next generation music CD players, walkmans and car stereos). It features burn/play lists, supports folders, (a feature available on the latest MP3 CD players), CD autoplay, and full playback control, including volume, play/pause, restart, repeat, song select, CD eject. The $20 utility runs on Mac OS X. [1.4MB]
Harmonic Inversion Technology, the exclusive US distributor for Village Tronic Power Mac video cards, announced the new MPDD Pro PCI video card. It runs under any Mac OS 7/8/9/X; has two video connectors: Apple RGB and VGA (for use one at a time); and supports up to millions of colors up at 1600x1200 resolution with 16MB of VRAM as well as offers support for Mac OS X Deep Sleep Mode and Gamma correction. The MPDD Pro offers support for almost a a dozen legacy CRT monitors, including Apple RGB, Apple Studio Displays with VGA connector, modern VGA monitors with DDC EDID information, and fixed-frequency Apple monitors. sers can purchase MPDD Pro at Small Dog, TechnoWarehouse, MacMall, DMS and other retailers.
Addonics today announced a multi-format FireWire-based Flash memory reader/writer that allows both Mac and PC users to transfer digital media files from seven different formats. The company also announced USB 2.0 compatibility for its Mini DigiDrive (external solution for $42) and Internal DigiDrive (for 3.5" drive bays at $55). The Addonics FireWire Mini DigiDrive measures 4.53"(W)x1.2"(D)x3" (H) and weighs just 5 ounces. The bus-powered device is $90.
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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
Dropshare 4 for Mac now available
Dropshare 4 for Mac has shipped, introducing support for uploading files and screenshots to Amazon S3 API-compliant services, like DreamObjects and OpenStack. The update also introduces a new popup design, an in-app editor for custom landing pages, an improved upload history window, and security improvements when using SSH connections. The paid upgrade costs $25, though it is free for customers who bought the previous version this year and half-price for those who acquired version 3 of the app last year. http://bit.ly/1XixV3q
Google starting phase-out of Flash ads
Search engine and advertising giant Google will shortly no longer accept Adobe Flash-created ads for its AdWords network. Starting June 30, ads in the once-ubiquitous format will no longer be accepted. Additionally, after January 2, 2017, the network will no longer serve Flash-based advertisements, and the network will be completely HTML 5 based. http://bit.ly/1PNx1uc