Apple has released Mac OS X Server 10.2.4 via the Software Update utility in Mac OS X. It delivers a number enhancements, including many related to: Workgroup Manager, Client Management, Server Status, Netboot, Network Install, QuickTime Streaming Server, File Services, XServe, Print Server and Mail Server. Earlier this month, Apple released Mac OS X 10.2.4 (client version).
Sony Ericsson Clicker! 0.99 lets you remotely control your Macintosh from a compatible Sony Ericsson phone, offering the ability to control PowerPoint or Keynote when giving presentations, control DVD Player or iTunes from your sofa or bed, and use AppleScript to "control anything you like". Sony Ericsson Clicker also has a built in "proximity sensor", allowing you to trigger actions when you leave or come back to your Mac. This preview release will expire March 1st 2003. (Info not available on Web site.) [148KB] Canto today released Cumulus 5.5.2, a free upgrade to its digital asset management solution for enterprises, workgroups and single users. It includes enhancements in compatibility with Mac OS X Classic Mode and enhanced OPI as well as an enhanced Pix Asset Converter which enables digital images cataloged in Cumulus to be converted into JPEG, TIFF and BMP formats, as well as conversion into RGB, CMYK and Greyscale color spaces with the simple click of a button. It also a Quark XTension update to Drag & Drop from Cumulus into Quark XPress 5.x. DivXRay 2.2 now features advanced encoder settings and a fast MPEG2 Demultiplexer. Registered users of the $15 utility are now able to access advanced settings of an MPEG4 encoder and save them as a set of presets. The release also features a "very fast" (faster than BBDemux) demuxer for MPEG2 Video, AC3 Audio and SPU Subtitles. DivXRay is a movie converter to convert MPEG-2-Program Streams into AVI files by using ffmpeg 0.4.6 [947KB] Fe77 today introduced update to Server Manager.app 1.02, its desktop client used to configure server settings from the comfort of the Finder. Server Manager v1.0.2 includes several changes including the addition of an online help system, Server component installation checking, the ability to verify Apache2 configuration files at the time you save your changes and several bug fixes. Pricing starts at $60. Electric Image's 3D modeler, Amorphium 3.1, has several bug fixes, including an improved Tin import/export module and better stability as well as remembered window settings and an improved Object Properties tab. Upgrades from v3.0 are free. Pricing is $40 (electronic download). [3.1MB]
"Apple has been behind the curve when it comes to Web services technology, but its November 2002 release of its WebObjects development platform, which includes the ability to create and support Web services, was a step forward in the company's not-yet-defined plan for making its mark in the Web services market," according to SearchWebServices.com: "In this second part of a two-part column looking at Apple and Web services, we'll take a closer look at WebObjects, and see what its capabilities say about the direction that Apple may be taking with regard to Web services."
MicroNet today announced the addition 52x CD-RW and a 4x DVD-R/W drives to the MicroNet Advantage product family, featuring rugged enclosures with both FireWire and USB 2.0 ports. The MicroNet Advantage DVD-R/W drive offers 4X DVD-R, 2X DVD-RW, 16X CD-R and 8X CD-RW capabilities. (4X DVD-R recording speed translates into approximately 15 minutes to fully record a high-speed 4.7 GB DVD-R disc.) The device is compatible with DVD Studio Pro. The new CD-R/W offers advanced features such as SMART-BURN media verification, Buffer Underrun Protection, and SMART-X high speed Digital Audio Extraction, while offering 52x CDR burning speed, and 24x CD-RW burning. It ships with Toast Lite; both devices are compatible with iTunes and iLife.
Jon Johnson has released the initial version of REALbasic Preference Pane Generator 0.8, a utility that works with REALbasic XML projects to provide a method of utilizing system preference panes on Mac OS X. Preference Panes were previously only available to Cocoa developers through the NSPreferencePane interface. Licensing is $30 for one preference pane project, while additional licenses are $15 each, or $100 for an unlimited license. [1.0MB] Tyrell Software today released a Mac OS X package installer for Plone 1.0, a free package containing the Zope application server and the Plone Content Management System, an intranet server that can function as a document publishing system and as a groupware tool for collaboration between separately located entities. The Mac OS X package requires Mac OS X 10.2. [20MB] Astro 1.2 is a Digital Asset Management solution that uses FileMaker and the power of Troi plug-ins to let users locate catalogued files quickly. It offers functions for cataloging, deleting, and listing disk contents as well as the the ability to show all images on a specific disk, create thumbnails, search disks by file name/type, and add labels and notes to images. It is $100 ($500 for an unlocked interface as well). [2.2MB] Unsanity's FruitMenu 3.0 is a $10 utility that gives you the ability to customize the Apple Menu and contextual menus. It will also launch applications and shell scripts from the Apple Menu and contextual menus. Users can also assign hotkeys to particular Apple menu items, have application-specific settings, and use single-button mice to invoke the contextual menu. [1.0MB]
Apple and Akamai have partnered with the College of Education at CSUS to provide an internet broadcast of the keynote at the (free) 9th Annual Multicultural Conference at CSUS on Saturday March 1st. The featured speaker is Christine Sleeter, a Professor in the College of Professional Studies at California State University, Monterey Bay, where she coordinates the Master of Arts in Education Program and teaches courses in multicultural education.
Alessandro Montalcini has released USB Overdrive 10.2.2, an update to his universal mouse and joystick driver for Mac OS X 10.2. The new version fixes a couple of minor issues and adds several new handy commands including Eject, sound volume control, brightness control and more. It als now includes both English and Japanese localizations. [600KB] Nemesys Software has released an update to its synchronization tool. File Synchronization 1.1.1 fixes a problem that would prevent automatic synchronization to start at launch, fixes a problem with files and folders reported sizes in the preview window and fixes another problem that would prevent File Synchronization to start on Mac OS X 10.1. [500KB] Safari Debugger 2.0 will activate "hidden debug features in Apple's Safari web browser that will fix most problems with online banking and many other web sites." This version adds a much improved user interface and is packaged as an application instead of a shell script. [57KB] pdfmodify is a PERL tool that allows you to modify existing pdfs adding data in the correct position in the correct page: "It's simple to use it like a batch application to fill every PDF form in your archive. It's simple to use it inside your cgis." t2pdf PRO + crypt 6.0 adds PDF encryption (permissions, user and owner passwords, 40- or 128-bit encryption) to the standard txt2pdf, a flexible PERL application for converting old .TXT files into PDF format. Glen Sawyer's MacMP3Gain 1.4 is an AppleScript Studio application which wraps up the command line version of mp3gain in a "quaint GUI. It is free and open source. You may download either the application itself or the entire project including the source code." Recent changes include a "Target MP3 Gain Value" option and a new preferences file to save previous dialog settings. [109KB]
IDG World Expo today announced that Apple, IBM, HP and other technology and life sciences companies will exhibit at the upcoming Bio-ITWorld Conference & Expo, taking place March 25-27, 2003 at Boston's Hynes Convention Center: "Bio-ITWorld Conference & Expo attracts pharmaceutical, biotechnology, academic, government and life science professionals who come to learn how technology tools for the life sciences can drive efficiencies, create opportunities and increase profitability within their organizations."
Auto FX Software's digital lighting and shading effects package, Mystical Lighting, "lets anyone apply photo-realistic lighting and shading effects to digital images. With this software you can enhance the ambiance of your images and improve its beauty. [It] includes 16 visual effects, over 400 presets for instant results and an infinite variety of looks." It works as a Photoshop-compatible plugin or stand-alone application under both Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X. The $180 package is available with a $30 through the end of March.
RedLightRunner today added over 100 new Apple Collectibles to its Web site. Included are new Apple logo pens, keychains, clocks, and money clips as well as a rare collection of 79 Apple insider shirts spanning 24 years of Apple Computer history, including early Apple Employee shirts, Newton team shirts, and shirts from the Fremont Macintosh Factory. RedLightRunner offers over 400 different Apple items (Apple T-shirts, watches, pens, posters, MacAquariums, etc.).
Tech news: PCMCIA has announced the development of a new PC-card specification codenamed NEWCARD that delivers external expansion with reduced size, increased speed, lower costs and support of advanced serial I/O technologies, USB 2.0 and PCI Express; isco will share key technology at no cost with chipmakers and computer companies to help drive the use of wireless networks within corporations; Intuit has apologized for its controversial new antipiracy technology in TurboTax, continually in the background on computers with Microsoft's Windows XP; and Gateway updated its Profile 4 line of all-in-one desktop PCs with a DVD burner option and lower prices, making it more competitive with the iMac.
Keyspan announced it has developed software that allows a user to personalize the functions of its Keyspan Presentation Remote ($80). The new software layer for the USB device allows users to customize the remote by redefining the actions of the buttons on the device, allowing users to customize the device functions for different applications, including PowerPoint and Keynote. The software may also be used to modify the remote so that it is capable of controlling additional applications. The free software will be available for download from the Keyspan web site on March 1st. By Design has completed a new Napoleonic wargame only for the Mac based on the the Waterloo Campaign engine and covering the battle between Napoleon and the Russian in 1812. Borodino is a new tactical-level Napoleonic simulation game for OS X that features Battalion level conflict, new graphics, group-based movement (in or out of formation), enemy flag capture, and other features. It is $25. Sokoban 1.7 is an addictive puzzle game modeled in the tradition of the ancient Japanese classic from the 1980s, requiring logical thinking and spatial planning: "The goal is to push boulders to their correct desitations in a crowed environment. Since the boulders are so heavy, you can only push them, and the challenge develops in keeping them from getting stuck." It adds new graphiccs, smoother animation, 300 new levels, a level stats screen, and other new features. It runs on both Mac OS 8/9/X. [4.9MB] Vizspring Software's iWatch 3.1 updates the company's $10 timer application that can act as a kitchen timer, an alarm clock, a stopwatch (with lap memory) as well as a clock displaying the time and computer uptime. It also features "actions" which adds options for displaying system alert messages and beeps, playing sound files, playing QuickTime movies, telling iTunes to start or stop, and even telling the computer to sleep, restart, or shut down or launch an application (or other file). [1.3MB] ExhibitionX 1.01 is a $15 shareware utility for viewing picture folders and iPhoto 2 albums: "Consisting of four easy to navigate 3D environments; the walk-around gallery, octagonal carousel, book view and multi-cube. ExhibitionX is a fun and practical way to present and view most popular image formats." It features OpenGL rendering, iPhoto 2 integration, keyboard navigation, and custom background textures and colors. [1.3MB]
Robert Lack has created a Safari wish list with some interesting feature suggestions for Apple's new web browser, including bookmark filtering, content-based searches for bookmarks, improved bookmark folders, and custom search forms in the "Google Search field." (Other improvements such as form autofill and tabbed browsing are rumored to be part of an upcoming Safari build.)
The Seattle Times notes that Mac users must factor Microsoft into future: "But Apple's fortunes have always remained tied to Microsoft, and specifically to Microsoft software, a point underscored last week when the Redmond software giant purchased the Virtual PC product line from veteran Mac software developer Connectix, raising questions once again about which way the scales would tip."
Stephane Madrau has released SwitchRes X 3.0, a final version of the shareware monitor resolution utility. The $15 shareware manages the resolution of all your monitors via a customizable menu. It allows to access some unsupported screen resolutions, and incorporates features relative to the Monitor Resolution, Monitor BitDepth, and Video Mirroring into one single utility. [1.2MB] epicware's Fire 0.32c adds new Swedish and Russian localization, better handling of conversation browser resizing, undo/redo support in chat windows, consolidated multiple buddy login on/off sounds, improves CPU utilization, and has better parsing of smileys. [5.3MB] YouHo Me has updated FreeLance Tracker 1.5, its job tracking software that is designed to track time of your job and builds reports, which can be used to supplement regular invoices (as a reference). It adds the ability to switch the current job to another client, saves reports, tracks billed/invoiced clients, and a adds a simplified interface. It is available for Mac OS X for $10 (introductory price). [1.4MB] MacCandy today released MacMaid, a shareware utility described as "the easiest way to organize your desktop. For people that keep everything they download on their desktop and dislike having to manually move and delete files each time." It features a 'Miniature' view (to save screen space), a log window to track files, and a SafeGuard feature that protects you from replacing files you may want to save. The $10 utility runs on Mac OS X. [1.0MB] Xupport 1.2.7 provides a GUI to configure many Mac OS X options, that are not or hard to configure manually, and more. It includes several Unix commands to optimize and secure your Mac, and activates features that are disabled by default. Verrsion 1.2.7 includes an improved file browser (displaying files that begin with a '.'), a 'man' browser for browsing the system Unix command manuals, and a function to conveniently locate files in the Finder. [386KB] Optigold ISP 3.1.9 is an update to Digital Point's cross-platform business software package to run all aspects of an internet service provider (from billing to server management). Version 3.1.9 adds new accounting restrictions, new VISP functions, updated domain registration forms and few bug fixes and other miscellaneous feature requests. A free version supporting up to 100 customers is available. ArcaneWare's Serial Storage 2.6 is a $20 shareware designed to organize your serial numbers, passwords, credit cards, (or any other information you'd like to store) into different folders. It uses military-strength 448-bit encryption and now features customizable fields and entry types as well as an advanced search feture. [2.3MB]
WiebeTech today announced a 250GB version of its DesktopGB+, its fanless, high-performance (7,200 rpm) FireWire storage device in a sleek aluminum enclosure. Based on the popular Oxford OXFW911 FireWire bridge, DesktopGB+ features dual FireWire ports for daisy chaining capabilities, user upgradeability, ATA-6 compatibility, a universal AC adaper, and Mac Drive 5 software for reading Mac-formatted drives on Windows computers. The 250GB/7,200 rpm version is $600, while a 0GB (case-only) version starts at $140.
Now AAPL Stock: 97.19 ( -0.16 )
Cirrus creates Lightning-headphone dev kit
Apple supplier Cirrus Logic has introduced a MFi-compliant new development kit for companies interested in using Cirrus' chips to create Lightning-based headphones, which -- regardless of whether rumors about Apple dropping the analog headphone jack in its iPhone this fall -- can offer advantages to music-loving iOS device users. The kit mentions some of the advantages of an all-digital headset or headphone connector, including higher-bitrate support, a more customizable experience, and support for power and data transfer into headphone hardware. Several companies already make Lightning headphones, and Apple has supported the concept since June 2014. http://bit.ly/29giiZj
Apple Store app offers Procreate Pocket
The Apple Store app for iPhone, which periodically rewards users with free app gifts, is now offering the iPhone "Pocket" version of drawing app Procreate for those who have the free Apple Store app until July 28. Users who have redeemed the offer by navigating to the "Stores" tab of the app and swiping past the "iPhone Upgrade Program" banner to the "Procreate" banner have noted that only the limited Pocket (iPhone) version of the app is available free, even if the Apple Store app is installed and the offer redeemed on an iPad. The Pocket version currently sells for $3 on the iOS App Store. [32.4MB]
Porsche adds CarPlay to 2017 Panamera
Porsche has added a fifth model of vehicle to its CarPlay-supported lineup, announcing that the 2017 Panamera -- which will arrive in the US in January -- will include Apple's infotainment technology, and be seen on a giant 12.3-inch touchscreen as part of an all-new Porsche Communication Management system. The luxury sedan starts at $99,900 for the 4S model, and scales up to the Panamera Turbo, which sells for $146,900. Other vehicles that currently support CarPlay include the 2016 911 and the 2017 models of Macan, 718 Boxster, and 718 Cayman. The company did not mention support for Google's corresponding Android Auto in its announcement. http://bit.ly/295ZQ94
Apple employees testing wheelchair features
New features included in the forthcoming watchOS 3 are being tested by Apple retail store employees, including a new activity-tracking feature that has been designed with wheelchair users in mind. The move is slightly unusual in that, while retail employees have previously been used to test pre-release versions of OS X and iOS, this marks the first time they've been included in the otherwise developer-only watchOS betas. The company is said to have gone to great lengths to modify the activity tracker for wheelchair users, including changing the "time to stand" notification to "time to roll" and including two wheelchair-centric workout apps. http://bit.ly/2955JDa
SanDisk reveals two 256GB microSDXC cards
SanDisk has introduced two 256GB microSDXC cards. Arriving in August for $150, the Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Premium Edition card offers transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s for reading data. The Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card can read at a fast 100MB/s and write at up to 90MB/s, and will be shipping sometime in the fourth quarter for $200. http://bit.ly/294Q1If
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE