MacHack today announced a number of new technical sessions that will take place at the MacHack 18 conference June 19-21, 2003 in Dearborn, Michigan. "Openings for speakers are still available, so don't hesitate to check the conference website for details on how to participate," the content committee says. A preliminary list of technical sessions includes such topics as: Bash Metrowerks, Hacking Objective-C, Porting Applications, BSD Security on Mac OS X, Video Digitizing, to name a few.
Adobe Systems reported first-quarter net income today that rose nine percent from the year-ago quarter, beating analysts' targets. For the quarter ended Feb. 28, the software maker earned $54.2 million, or 23 cents a share, compared to $49.8 million, or 20 cents a share, a year earlier. Excluding investment losses, Adobe's pro forma profit was 25 cents a share. By that measure, analysts polled by Thomson First Call had been expecting earnings of 22 cents a share. Adobe shares fell 15 cents to $28.37 in after-hours trading. The company's stock had risen $1.03, or nearly 4 percent, to close at $28.52 on Nasdaq. Adobe said that for its second quarter, ended May, it expects earnings before charges in a range of 24 to 27 cents.
Mozilla 1.3 adds junk-mail classification, newsgroup filters, image auto sizing, "dynamic" profile switching, and preferences for the "find as you type" feature to the open-source Web browser for Mac OS X. Version 1.3 also includes fixes for performance, standards compliance and site compatibility.
SanDisk today introduced a 4GB CompactFlash (CF) card, the world's largest capacity CompactFlash memory card as well as a 2GB CF card at CeBIT 2003. With the new announcement, SanDisk is utilizing 0.13 micron NAND flash technology and a new advanced high density component package to quadruple the capacity of its largest capacity CF card. The card, which is in the popular Type I CF format, will be $1,000 and is expected to start shipping this summer. The 2GB CF card is expected to start shipping in May 2003. Other capacities are now available: 32MB ($30), 64MB ($35), 128MB ($55), 192MB ($75), 256MB ($80), 512MB ($160), and 1GB ($300). SanDisk also introduced a 128MB MultiMediaCard, a flash memory card targeted mainly at the growing demand for MultiMediaCards in audio players and new multi-function cell phones. The new card, which also can be used in most portable devices that have a slot for SD memory cards, is the highest capacity MultiMediaCard capacity offered in the industry. SanDisk also sells 32MB and 64MB MultiMediaCards. The 128MB MultiMediaCard has a suggested retail price of $75 and will start shipping to retail stores later this month. SanDisk also introduced 1GB ($330) and 512MB ($170) SD Cards. The 512MB SD card is expected to be available in the second quarter, while the 1GB SD card is expected to be available in the third quarter.
NPD Techworld reports that Apple is No. 5 in the MP3 player market in January 2003 with 6.1% of unit sales, behind RIO (18.8%), RCA (12.7%), Samsung (7.8%), and Creative Labs (6.9%), respectively. The total dollar volume for the month was more than $350 million. The marketshare is based on sales at electronic/appliance stores, A/V specialty stores, and "Mass Merchants."
myPhoto 1.1 complements iPhoto by automatically sharing all of your photos, captions, albums, etc from iPhoto on to your personal web site with a search engine and much more. This release adds a preferences page with many more settings, including support for large photo libraries, international users, newer versions of PHP, Mac OS X Server, and other bug fixes. The freeware requires Mac OS X and iPhoto 2. [666KB] NoName Scriptware's Repair Shop 1.0b is a free AppleScript utility that will repair your startup disk's file permissions or verify your disk's file permission settings, completely bypassing Apple's Disk Utility program. It also offers the option of displaying a log of all the files with permissions set incorrectly, what was fixed, and how. (Requires the 24U Appearance OSAX Scripting Addition, which is included with the distribution.) [240KB] Mount Me! 1.2 is an "AppleScript that quickly mounts .toast, .image, .dmg, .smi, and .img images, then quits, providing seamless integration of disk image mounting without any app-launching. You can drag disk images onto the script or select them from the Finder and launch the script." [72KB] xGates 1.3 is an update to the "sophisticated and outrageously bloody action game that pits you and your trusty chainsaw against the evil forces of corporate monopolist tyranny." It brings more levels and new gameplay elements. It runs on both Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X. [2.1MB] Tri-Edre today released Clone'X 1.1, an update to its system and volume cloning utility for Mac OS 8/9/X: " [It] is specially designed to create a copy of your system, to duplicate it on other disks or computers, and to repair and reinstall the system in case of problems." The $50 utility can support removeable/burnable media, compression, history logging, undo features for repairs, and other features. [771KB]
Iomega today announced its new Iomega CD-RW 52x24x52x USB 2.0 external drive ($160), which includes the company's Iomega HotBurn Pro software for two-step CD creation. It also features a digital audio extraction (DAE) rate of 48x and features buffer under-run protection. Iomega's HotBurn Pro software offers drag-and-drop file recording, an integrated console interface, integrated CD copying and CD imaging functions, compilation creation, and a jewel case and CD cover editor. It also adds a graphical audio layout editor; pop, click and hiss removal filters; bootable CD creation; and an advanced data manager for control over file system and multi-session recording options. The drive also bundles MusicMatch Jukebox software. (Hot Burn for Mac only supports USB 1.1.)
Teradactyl has announced Mac OS X client support for all versions of its True incremental Backup System (TiBS). TiBS is an advanced software package that provides centralized backup of computer data for distributed computing environments. It supports operating and file system clients for Mac OS X, Windows, the Andrew File System (AFS) and other UNIX and Linux platforms. TiBS provides HFS+ and HFS file system support, including resource forks, attributes, and aliases. UFS support includes the backup of symbolic links and other special files. Users can backup machines manually, schedule backups, and perform secure backups via encrypted network transfer. It also offers command line control of applications and snapshot technologies before and after backup. License are per platorm (rather than per-client).
MacNN readers noted that Apple has recently cut the price of engraving an iPod at the Apple Store to $19 (from $49 previously). The cuts follow a similar price reduction at the Apple Store UK earlier this week. Macworld UK notes that the 5GB iPod is still unavailable at the Apple Store: "Due to significant demand, the 5GB iPod is temporarily unavailable."
Apple is holding its next set of Demo Days this weekend, March 15-16. The Apple product-focused days will showcase the recently released 12" Aluminum PowerBook, and AirPort Extreme products. In conjunction with the event, Apple is offering $50 off an Epson photo printer when purchased with any new Mac.
Apple has announced new software distribution program for Mac OS X developers, SoftwareToGo, which offers custom-burned CDs with user-selectable software at retail CompUSA outlets: "SoftwareToGo is a just-in-time electronic software distribution system for getting your latest software products, or even your entire software catalog, into your customers' hands without the hassle and expense of production and packaging, distribution, warehousing, inventory management, and shelf space limitation issues. SoftwareToGo and CompUSA, one of the largest software retailers in the country, have teamed up to bring developers and publishers a revolutionary way of getting their software products to market. Best of all, ADC Premier and Select members with software products can take advantage of this revolutionary program with absolutely no up-front costs."
EZQuest today debuted its Cobra+ FireWire 800 external hard drive. The high-performance FireWire 800 (1394B) drive is available in capacities up to 250GB and also offers a USB 2.0 port. The Cobra+ 120GB FireWire hard drive is housed in a light-gray, streamlined case that is fully shielded with 0.6mm metal. It comes ready to use, and includes a built-in universal auto-switching power supply, a cable and software as well as a one-year warrancy. . Cobra+ FireWire 800 drives are stackable and ship with Intech Hard Disk Speed Tools, which offers RAID level-0 striping. Cobra+ FireWire hard drives are also available with standard FireWire (1394a) ports in 40GB, 60GB, 80GB, 100GB and 120GB sizes. (Pricing not available; site not updated.)
Nvidia today introduced its GeForce FX Go series, which "share the same cinematic computing feature set, including CineFX architecture with advanced vertex and pixel shaders for stunning special effects. These new mobile processors also include PowerMizer 2.0 technology for advanced dynamic power and battery management." The GeForce FX Go5600 and Go5200 GPUs are due in April. Meanwhile, ATI unveiled the Mobility Radeon 9600 family of mobile graphics processors: "Using an extraordinarily efficient 3D core delivering 12 pixel shader operations per clock cycle, [it] easily outperforms the competitor's fastest mobile graphics chips, and astonishingly, delivers up to 50% more performance than the fastest competing desktop graphics processors in key benchmarks, including the industry-standard 3DMark 2003 Pixel Shader 2.0 test." It also offers the ability to design notebooks with user-upgradeable graphics, supports GDDR2-M memory and support for AGP8X.
Tech news: Flat-panel displays for desktop computers are expected to surpass traditional CRT monitors in revenue this year; ABCNews.com plans to launch a 24-hour news service that will be streamed live on the Internet for a monthly fee; and Retail clothing chain Benetton will soon add ID chips to its garments that allows for real-time tracking of its inventory.
CourseForum Technologies has released CourseForum 2.0, its web-based software for e-learning content creation, sharing and discussion, which can be used for posting and sharing course materials, class discussions, and student collaboration. It now provides full support for content that includes international characters, such as in European or Eastern languages. Licenses start at US$80 for a single course (a free version is also available). [1.0MB] Totally Hip has released HipFlics 1.2 for Mac OS X with support for MPEG-4 video and AAC audio encoding, offering the ability to author ISO compliant MPEG-4 video and AAC audio files. It also offers a faster compression engine and an expanded codec view as well as ll support for QuickTime 6 effects and transitions. HipFlics offers unlimited custom settings for codecs and filters, batch processing, multiple video codec application, custom watermarking, live previews, crop/resize functions, and other advanced features. The $50 application is available for $35 to education customers. It is a free upgrade for existing customers. [3.2MB] Formac has updated its devideon v2.1 DVD authoring software for its Devideon Superdrive ($400). The software for Mac OS 9/X allows users to convert iMovies and QuickTime files and also create custom DVD menus with different chapters, images and text. Version 2.1 offers improved video/audio synchronization, encoder improvements by using YUV-Colorspace when encoding DV-movies, interlaced frame detection, contextual menus, and an improved screensaver. [1.5NB] David Kopec has released B-Prolog 6.4, described as "one of the fastest Prolog compilers with a cutting-edge CLP(FD) system." Version 6.4 offers a "state-of-the-art implementation of tabling, a feature that has found applications into many fields. The new tabling system is significantly more efficient than the previous one thanks to newly implemented strategies and optimization techniques." Individual licenses start at $115. [557KB] Mek&Tosj has released LabAssistant 1.0.1, its program that helps scientists organize their experiments and notes. This version brings a number of bug fixes, including the correct display of time and date, correct behaviour of sheets, and correct logging of reminders as well as an automatic routine for checking for new updates. [900KB]
Marathon Computer today introduced a convenient, integrated system for rackmounting a flat-panel display, keyboard and touchpad together in a single slide-mounted console. The 2U R-Console for standard 19" racks lets users turn an existing flat-panel display into a slide-rail-mounted command center for the equipment rack. It comes with the company's USB keyboard/trackpad combination pre-installed and fits almost any 15" flat-panel monitor. The $500 R-Console includes a completely Mac-compatible Marathon USB R-Keyboard, with its built-in TouchPad, pre-installed in a rigid aircraft-grade aluminum chassis and smooth-action ball-bearing slides.
SanDisk today introduced a new line of single-slot ImageMate card readers for a variety of flash memory cards. The four new ImageMate models, all with hi-speed USB 2.0/USB 1.1 connectivity, support CompactFlash Type I/II cards along with the IBM MicroDrive cards (SDDR-91); SD and MultiMediaCards (SDDR-93); SmartMedia and the xD-Picture Card (SDDR-95); and the Memory Stick and Memory Stick PRO (SDDR-97), which the company says is the first card reader in the industry for both the Memory Stick and the Memory Stick PRO. Each is $20, except for the SmartMedia/xD model, which is priced at $25. These new "driverless" readers will be available early in the second quarter.
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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