Evening tech news: The record industry today opened a new front in its war against online piracy on by surprising hundreds of thousands of Internet song swappers with messages warning that they could be "easily" identified and face "legal penalties" for their actions; ComScore says its new service for rating search-site usage is more accurate than rival offerings, and its data confirms that Google leads the pack; the U.S. Federal Trade Commission said today that two-thirds of unsolicited commercial email ('SPAM') is fraudulent.
Belkin today introduced the first accessories on the market for the new Apple iPod. Belkin is offering the Auto Kit for iPod, Backup Battery Pack for iPod and Mobile Cassette Adapter -- all compatible with new iPods with dock connector. All three products will be available in North America on May 1, 2003.
PowerLogix today announced lower pricing on its PowerForce G4 Single- and Dual-CPU upgrades.
Apple will soon launch a series of television commercials depicting people singing while listening to an iPod, according to Forbes. The viewer will not hear the music they're singing along with, and instead hears only their voices. The ads are meant to be memorable -- "there is little chance they won't make an impression," the article says. The advertising campaign is expected to showcase the new iPod, and Apple's iTunes Music Store.
KavaSoft's iConquer 2.02 is a new version of the Mac OS X game of world conquest. iConquer allows up to 6 players to play against each other over the Internet or against the computer. Version 2 features dramatically enhanced network speed and stability. iConquer 2 now comes with several maps, including Europe and The World. The $13 game title is available in ten languages. [7.3MB] Stargazer's Delight 6.2 is an astronomical desktop planetarium and sky simulator. It contains all the constellations and boundaries, provides info on every star, shows the phases of the moon and the apparent brightness of the planets. Animated graphs illustrate the length of night and day as well. It is $30 and runs on Mac OS 9/X. [4.5MB] Kanzu has released iCan 2.1, a $10 (shareware) skinnable trashcan for OS X desktops. Version 2.1 offers much improved speed and response when dragging items to the trash, an improved force delete, options to view the trash's size and item count in its label, the ability to empty the trash of individual volumes, and a customizable contextual menu. [1.9MB] metaobject and OCSoftware release PostView, an advanced document and image viewer. It offers support for a variety of formats, the ability to view facing pages, navigate via PDF outline, search for and copy text from PDF and Postscript files, and print EPS/Postscript files on non-Postscript Mac OS X printers as well as view paper boundaries overlayed on document. It is $22. [1.5MB] J2SEditor 1.1 is an IPTC caption editor with file management capabilities running on Mac OS X and Mac OS 9. It features an image browser, copy/move/delete features, and an IPTC caption editing module lets you edit textual meta-data of graphics files separately or in batch without affecting the documents. It supports all IPTC-compatible file formats such as JPEG, TIFF, Photoshop (PSD) and native IPTC image files. KEL9000 has released MissionLog 1.0, a "revolutionary weblogging system. MissionLog doesn't use templates or cookie cutters to display weblogs. Simply load a precreated HTML document and select the area for your weblog. MissionLog supports WebDAV, FTP and RSS." It is $15. [1.4MB] dot software has released Link Checker 1.1.4, a fast link verifying tool that allows you to find all broken and redirected links on your web site. It can store settings for multiple web sites, has custom Regular Expression link parsing modules, fixes broken links for local sites, multiple socket connections for speed, and can save your link checks in HTML reports. [Classic, OSX]
Lexmark today unveiled its PrinTrio X1150 All-In-One (AIO), which offers four imaging components in a single compact solution: printing, copying, scanning and PC-faxing: "With its small footprint, the X1150 fits anywhere a traditional inkjet printer would, and the low profile, slanted design allows for easy accessibility when the user is seated." The $100 USB printer features 4800 dpi color printing, 9600 dpi scanning, 14 ppm black/8 ppm color print speeds, and compatibility with Mac OS 9/X. Lexmark also introduced three other injket printers. The Lexmark Z600 Color Jetprinter Series ($50) features up to 4800x1200 dpi print resolution and fast print speeds of up to 14 ppm in black and up to 8 ppm in color. The Lexmark Z700 Photo Jetprinter Series ($80) offers up to 4800 dpi resolution, six-color photo print support, edge-to-edge printing and automatic cartridge alignment and PrecisionSense technology, which automatically adjusts the driver according to the media being fed through the paper tray. Finally the Lexmark P700 Photo Jetprinter Series ($100) is the industry's first sub-$100 photo printer with on-board camera card readers, offerings the same capabilities of the Z700. The printers are expected to ship in May.
JR Hill & Co has introduced its 17" PowerBook Sleeve designed to be "a simple yet stylish leather case. Made of durable full grain leather or balistic nylon, with 1/8" padding in front, back and sides, your PowerBook will be well protected. The Sleeve can either be carried by itself or can be placed into a briefcase or backpack and your PowerBook will be protected. The Sleeve also features a zipper on all three sides, leather piping and handles." The leather version is $110, while the nylon version retails for $85. Both will be shipping on May 12, 2003.
Netgear today introduced its dual-band 802.11a+g VPN firewall solution, the Netgear ProSafe Dual-Band Wireless VPN firewall (FWAG114). With the ability to simultaneously support 802.11a, 802.11b and 802.11g WLAN standards, the FWAG114 delivers offers tri-mode wireless signal reception, a Stateful Packet Inspection (SPI) firewall with routing functionality and support for two 3DES-encrypted Virtual Private Network (VPN) tunnels using digital certificates for Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) encryption key exchanges as well as other security features: SPI firewall to prevent Denial-of-Service (DoS) attacks, Intrusion Detection System (IDS) including logging, reporting and e-mail alerts, Web URL content filtering and prevent replay attack. It will ship in June for $460.
Following up from yesterday's report, MacNN reader Josh anon says that Lightbox recently added Canon EOS 10D support, including large previews and raw conversion. Meanwhile, Dennis Dimick provided more thoughts on the iView Multimedia Pro update: "I finally got to my cache of EOS D10 CRW (raw) files and checked whether they work with iView Media Pro 1.5.7. Yes, impressively, iView sees them as either thumbnails or full size onscreen previews."
Microsoft has released the results of recent survey commissioned by the MacBU regarding the "many habits and styles people have when it comes to what goes in and out of their [email] inbox." Among the findings: "When it comes to attachments, the most common reason people say 'oops' after sending e-mail is because they forgot to include one. Almost half of survey respondents said that forgetting to include their document attachment was their most common e-mail faux pas. Other frequent goofs included misspelling words and replying to all instead of to the sender only; each of these gained almost a third of the votes.... Generation Y respondents forgot to include attachments almost three times as often as their older e-mailing counterparts." Users can participate in the same survey online.
Apple has posted a streaming QuickTime archive of yesterday's event as well as its new marketing video on its music revolution and television ads that were showcased at yesterday's special event in San Francisco. Yesterday we posted full coverage of the event along with notes on the new iPods, music service, and iTunes 4. [updated]
IOGEAR today announced its new FireWire 800 PCI cards for desktop Macs. Two 3-port cards feature either three FireWire 800 ports or two FireWire 800 ports and one standard FireWire 400 port for legacy connectivity: "At data transfer speeds of up to 800 Mbps, double the current FireWire 400 standard, Apple's FireWire 800 provides more than two times the available bandwidth of Hi-Speed USB 2.0." Users can daisy chain up to 63 FireWire devices together. The cards come with a three-year limited warranty. Both cards are priced at $100 and are available now.
LapWorks today announced its MouzPad attachment for its flagship product, the Laptop Desk. This snap-on, rigid plastic accessory increases the Laptop Desk's mousing surface for notebook users who prefer an external mouse. The MouzPad creates a 6" by 9" mouse-friendly work area, yet extends the Laptop Desk by only 3". It supports both right or left-handed users, and both v1.0 and v2.0 of the Laptop Desk. The MouzPad is thin (1/8" thick), lightweight (3.7 ounces), and made of durable black polycarbonate. The $10 accessory is $5 when purchased with a new Laptop Desk.
Palm Desktop 4.1 is the latest version of Palm's syncronization software for the Mac. It offers Date Book, To Do List, Address Book, and other function and can be used as a stand-alone application, or to view, sort, find, edit, back up, and add applications to a Palm handheld. It features a new Send To Handheld Droplet, which allows you to send image and audio files to the Palm handheld or expansion card as well as support for latest Palm handhelds. [11.2MB] Doug's AppleScripts for iTunes has updated iTunes Library Manager 3.0, a $5 shareware AppleScript applet that makes backup copies of the iTunes Library database file, allowing users to easily save multiple iTunes Library configurations which can be retrieved and loaded at any time. It adds iTunes 4 support as well as an Updater applet to assist with upgrading iTunes 3 Libraries. [144KB] Norpath today announced Norpath Elements Studio 2.0, the latest version of its authoring software for building interactive multimedia applications and computer-based training solutions. It features a new multi-platform builder for deployment on Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, and Solaris. The $600 suite includes a comprehensive suite of design tools for creating interactive graphics, animation and multimedia as well as easy-to-use pre-built application logic, knowledge, database and interface components. [29MB] bManager 4.0 is a professional contacts and to-do-task manager that allows you to share your contacts on a network, allowing users to manage users and privileges (add, modify and delete). Version 4.0 offers an assistant to configure the application, to-do-list management for each user, improved search, custom fields/checkboxes, and notes for each contact. Pricing starts at $80. [7.0MB] OnMyCommandCM 1.5 is a new version of contextual menu command line instruction executor. UNIX command may take a clicked object path as a parameter so you may perform an action on file or folder. A command can be executed in Terminal.app or silently. It offers support for text selection in Cocoa applications. The freeware has a collection of over 130 commands submitted by users. [152KB] Epic Games reports that a version of the Macintosh UT2003 demo has been submitted to Macsoft, which is ready for large scale testing: "Macsoft will be doing some testing on this and creating an installer for it but hopefully this week the Mac demo of UT2003 will be released." 4D today announced 4D for Dreamweaver MX, a free extension plug-in for Dreamweaver MX(tm) that inserts 4D tags into web sites designed in Dreamweaver MX. Engineered for rapid deployment of sites designed in Dreamweaver MX, it provides a GUI interface that allows designers to quickly and easily generate technically accurate 4D tags. The 4D for Dreamweaver MX plugin is certified for use with 4D 2003 on Mac OS 9.1 and Mac OS X. [v3/4, MX] equinux has released a pre-release of VPN Tracker 2.0pr, its unique Mac OS X IPsec client, which adds support for digital RSA certificates. Certificates can be issued, digitally signed, validated and managed centrally. User specific certificates eliminate requirements for password sharing and guarantee that only intended recipients or network devices have access to transmitted data. The final release is expected at the end of May; it will be a free upgrade to all new purchases. Pricing starts at $80. [2.9MB]
Akamai today announced that Akamai and Apple are extending their commitment to Akamai's global platform and EdgeSuite content distribution services to deliver industry-leading streaming video and audio over the Internet. Akamai's suite of services currently provide the worldwide infrastructure to support content delivery and software downloads for Apple.com, including the extremely popular QuickTime Movie Trailers site, as well as serving as the backbone for Apple's QuickTime Streaming Operations. Additionally, the Akamai EdgeSuite platform provides the network architecture that handles file distribution for Apple's new iTunes Music Store. Apple has been working with Akamai since 1999, and has taken advantage of a range of integrated capabilities of the Akamai EdgeSuite service, including global traffic management and site visitor analysis tools.
Several readers note that Apple Stores will be holding a special events for the launch of the new iPods, Live on Stage: " From 6 to 10 p.m., enjoy a live DJ spinning tunes on his iPod. Receive a free event poster (while supplies last). And get a limited edition T-shirt for $10 - or for free if you buy an iPod. That's not all: you can also enter to win a JBL sound system worth $1800. Special Appearances. Singer-songwriter Liz Phair will appear at the SoHo store and ska band Less Than Jake will appear at The Grove during this special event."
Apple describes how the authorization works within iTunes 4 and how to deauthorize a computer; the differences in the AAC and MP3 codecs that can be used in iTunes 4; how interrupted downloads are handled by iTunes; and how to locate downloaded files purchased from the Music Store. Meanwhile, MacNN readers Scott Rose and Joshua Rafofsky offered a few notes about sharing music using iTunes 4, including the ability to share playlists (as well as music) over the Internet (as well as Rendezvous networks) and bookmarking URLs for specific playlists.
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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