Monitorer X 1.1 is a Mac OS X extension that records every keystroke in the background and saves it to a text file. "It also can take screenshots so you can view what other people were doing on your computer," explains the developer. With the latest version, you can choose between seven different screenshot compression qualities. [Download - 1.6MB] Complete Apache 2.0.45 is an update to the "easiest way to install and setup an Apache 2 Web server on Mac OS X." Version 2.0.45 includes a number of enhancements to the Apache 2 preferences pane, as well as many bug fixes. This version also includes fixes to recently announced security issues with Apache 2, so all users are encouraged to upgrade. [Download - 6.6MB] mere-mortal Software has released Safe Place, a $10 application designed to securely store your passwords, credit card numbers, software registration numbers, or "any other information you want to keep handy and safe from prying eyes." It is available for Mac OS X only. [Download - 4.4MB]
Mac fans are clamoring for Apple to develop its own cell phone, but Wireless Supersite Editor Ross Rubin explains why the company "won't phone home." Rubin says that control over distribution is paramount at Apple: "In Steve's world, distribution is a necessary evil; I can just see him storming around the board room, asking Al Gore why users can't just come to Cupertino to pick up their Macs." Rubin compares the potential situation to that of Apple's retail experience, in which it resorted to opening its own stores: "the company wants to control so much of the user experience -- from your presentation package to your email address -- that if it could break even delivering its own products instead of using Airborne Express, it would."
Impression 1.1 is a $20 backup utility used to back up directories to (and restore them from) multiple optical discs (CD-R, CD-RW, and DVD-R are supported). It includes a utility for erasing rewritable discs. It now supports incremental/differential backups, support for session documents to recall any previous backup state, and handles burn preferences on a per-disc basis. [466KB] Xupport 1.2.9 provides a clean GUI to configure many Mac OS X system options, that are not or hard to configure manually, and more. It includes several unix command to optimize and secure your Mac, and activates features that are disabled by default. Version 1.29 a new command to create symbolic links in the Browser; list last logins of users and ttys; more firewall examples (Stealth mode; and an actualized network port list. [423KB] tin:b Software has released TurboTool 2.2, a shareware utility that can graphically compose 'actions' which are built from 'atomics', i.e. basic components like shell or AppleScripts, service calls or copy/paste. 'Actions' run either within TurboTool or can be created as a droplet application. It includes enhancements for compatibility with Mac OS X 10.2, adds AppleScript support and fixes minor bugs. The license is $15 after the demonstration period until May. [4.1MB] Electric Butterfly has released Stimulus 3 for Mac OS 9. The $15 shareware multimedia player will play MP3s, view photos, and perform other multimedia actions such as a play slideshow, adjust volume, adjust treble/bass, create play lists, and search your collection. It is already available for Mac OS 9. [Classic, OSX] Andreas Pardeike has updated the LOOPS screensaver series with a brand new screensaver called "LOOPS Disco" and a free "LOOPS Teaser" screensaver that shows our engine. The collection features Aqua, Fireplace, Laundry, and Stream modules. Each module is $1.50. Only the LOOPS Teaser, displaying a Newton Scale, is available for download. [1.5MB] Lightbox 1.0.1, a free update to the $25 professional photo management program for Mac OS X, is now available. It includes over 50 new features including an iPhoto importer, the ability to use Lightbox albums in iDVD/iMovie, the option not to copy images into the storage location, simultaneous jpeg/raw shooting support, improved image previews, faster histograms, and other changes. [2.0MB]
Shares of Apple tumbled almost 9 percent on Friday on concern that its talks with Vivendi Universal to buy the Universal Music Group could yield a deal that would deplete Apple's cash trove and push it into an uncertain and troubled market. Meanwhile, Billionaire oilman Marvin Davis said he would drop his bid to acquire the entertainment assets of Franco-American conglomerate Vivendi Universal if Vivendi sells Universal Music to Apple, which could jeopordize Apple's bid: "The shares dropped $1.27 to $13.10 on Nasdaq in midafternoon trade. It was the biggest one-day percentage drop for the stock since last July."
Mandrake Linux 9.1, code-named "Bamboo", is now available for PowerPC processors. This new release provides all Mandrake 9.1 features, including Apache 2, "Zeroconf" network support and WiFi support. Mandrake 9.1 also offers simplified graphical installer, a new "MandrakeGalaxy" theme, stunning anti-aliased fonts, and the new KDE 3.1 and GNOME 2.2 desktop environments. Mandrake 9.1/PPC is based on Linux kernel 2.4.21 and includes XFree86 4.3.0, KDE 3.1, GNOME 2.2, OpenOffice.org 1.0.2, Mozilla 1.3, Apache 2, and Samba 2.2.7. It also includes Mac-On-Linux, full support for newest hardware and new sleep code for Apple laptops, and support for all PCI-based Macs. CDs are $35.
The LA Times reports that Apple is in talks to buy Universal Music for as much as $6 billion: "In a pairing that would alter the architecture of the music business, Apple Computer Inc. is in talks with Vivendi Universal to buy Universal Music Group, the world's largest record company... The discussions, a closely held secret for several months, could founder over unresolved issues. Apple hasn't made a formal bid but may offer $5 billion to $6 billion for the music company before Vivendi's April 29 board meeting, according to the sources." "People close to Jobs say he is convinced that the music industry is about to turn a corner in the copyright war. With the government shutting down pirate Web sites and the record industry now going after individuals for alleged piracy, the Apple chief believes digital theft will become increasingly more complicated, prompting fans to migrate to legitimate services, sources said."
Native Instruments has released Vokator, its "revolutionary vocoder that defines a new standard for transparency, detail, and smoothness. It is not only an exceptional vocoder, but also a sophisticated synthesizer, a granular sampler, and a virtualsound-fusion laboratory. The $300 application uses 1024 bands. eSuite4X 2.5 - MySQL4 Edition allows users to install MySQL ("in under 5 minutes"), start/stop and configure MySQL using a System Preference Pane, easily view log and configuration files with the integrated Log & Config File Manager, and graphically manage users, databases, tables, indexes, server status, create queries, import and export data etc. with the integrated SQL4X Manager J. A demo of the $100 application is available online. [7.7MB] Acrux software's MailVoiceClip is a Mac OS X Cocoa application for sending voice-clips by e-mail. Users can record a voice-clip and immediately send it by e-mail (or alternatively attach it to an email message). The received voice recording can be played by both Mac and PC users. The $10 shareware requires Mac OS X 10.2 and an internal/external microphone. [500KB]
KB roundup: Apple says that Mac OS X 10.2.5 fixes the date reset problem introduced in Mac OS X 10.2.4; Classic may not recognize some CD-ROMs when inserted after the Classic environment is launched; Mac OS X 10.2.3 or later may not complete installation and will quit without an error message, if the 128MB minimum memory requirement is not met; and Apple describes how to change the location of the default FTP root directory (FTPRoot).
Now AAPL Stock: 100.35 ( -0.06 )
Trade-up program expands in Europe
Smartphone users in France, Italy, and Spain will have until at least August of this year to trade in old iPhone, Windows Phone, or Android models at Apple Stores, and put the reward towards a new iPhone -- thanks to an expansion of Apple's trade-in program into those countries. The money given for the trade-in must be applied towards a new iPhone on a two-year payment plane, and traders must qualify under a credit check as part of the program. Interested customers can apply for the trade-in at their nearest Apple Store. http://bit.ly/1qPsldD
NBCUniversal adds Bravo, Syfy, E! to Apple TV
NBCUniversal has launched three new apps channels for Apple TV users. Bravo Now, Syfy Now and E! Now brings users access full seasons of current and past episodes of most of NBCUniversal's catalog. The Bravo Now app includes shows like "The Real Housewives of New York Cit," "Below Deck Mediterranean," comedy "Odd Mom Out" and "Top Chef." The Syfy Now app offers up shows like "The Magicians," thriller "12 Monkeys" and the reality show "Face Off." The E! Now app serves up shows like "Keeping Up with the Kardashians," "Botched," "#RichKids of Beverly Hills," Caitlyn Jenner's "I Am Cait," and "WAGS." While some content is free, most content requires users to authenticate via their cable satellite or telco TV provider. http://bit.ly/20K4Pea
Apple rolls out Arabic version of Apple.com
Apple has rolled out a new version of its Apple.com website for Arabic language users in the United Arab Emirates. The site utilizes a right-to-left reading format where it has been updated, although the upgrade is still in progress with a number of page links still in the original English language left-to-right format. Of particular note is that the site debuts an all-new custom Arabic font created by the Tarek Atrissi Design agency, giving it a highly contemporary look and feel. The new support for Arabic on its host website follows the introduction of full support for right-to-left languages in iOS 9, and the addition of Arabic support to Siri late last year. http://apple.co/20JHGIM
Adobe previews Photoshop content-aware crop
Adobe has previewed a new 'content-aware crop' feature from the next version of its Photoshop CC. The new feature is similar to its 'content-aware fill' from the current version of Photoshop CC, and potentially saves users time when cropping photos in a way that might otherwise leave blank white space in the frame. Adobe's 'content-aware' tech automatically assesses the blank space and seamlessly fills the blank space with the nearest related content in the space when a photo is expanded or rotated without the need to manually clone that part of the image. The feature allows users to move a horizon by adding more sky or ground, change the aspect ratio by adding content around the edges of the image and fill in the corners of an image when rotated during a crop. Adobe says the feature is coming soon and will be automatically available to Creative Cloud subscribers. http://adobe.ly/20JDFEu
Markzware updates Q2ID for QuarkXPress 12 files
Graphic design file conversion tool maker Markzware has launched a new version of its Q2ID tool. The InDesign plugin enables users to open QuarkXPress files within a new InDesign (INDD) document, without rebuilding the QXP document from scratch -- the new version includes support for QuarkXPress 12 files. Q2ID Subscription members can download the new version as part of their annual plan. A single-user can purchase the plugin for $200, with other licensing options available. http://bit.ly/1Z4dS9t
PopChar X 7.5 arrives
Ergonis Software has released PopChar X 7.5, an improved version of the company's tool for finding and inserting special characters and exploring fonts. PopChar X 7.5 adds support for combined emojis in the Apple Color Emoji font, enhances the "Font Info" view, and adds many further enhancements that improve overall speed and stability. PopChar X 7.5 retails for €30 ($34), and is free for anyone who owns a license for PopChar X 7 or purchased a license for PopChar X 6 on or after March 1, 2014 [4.5MB]
Safari Technology Preview release 5 arrives