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The band Phish recently re-launched its Web site to include new features and content. The band now recommends Apple's Safari over Internet Explorer for use with the site, and makes several other references to Macs. MacNN reader Mike Skuro notes that one video segment on the site "features a movie done with iMovie."
Kaidan today announced its Kaidan Accessory Kit for the Apple's iSight Video Camera. The kit includes a 37mm threaded lens adapter ring/lens shade, a tripod 1/4-20 mounting adapter and a small desktop tripod with extendable legs. It allows iSight owners to position their cameras at eye-level without resorting to permanently sticking mounts to their monitors or computers: the adapter ring makes it easy to screw on standard 37mm lenses and/or filters for those who wish to attach a wide-angle lens or a close-up lens (for collaboration in scientific and technical applications). It is available or $50. [site not updated]
Wacom today announced that U.S. and Canadian customers who buy a new Wacom Intuos2 Platinum pen tablet before Sept. 15, 2003, qualify for a free Photoshop training video worth up to $70 from PhotoshopVideos.com. Users can receive a free video or DVD from the extensive collection when purchasing a Intuos2 Platinum pen tablet from any Wacom reseller using a free mail-in video order form.
Scientific Computing has named Apple's Power Mac G5 its Editor's Choice personal computer. The Power Mac G5 features a 64-bit desktop processor and a 1 GHz front-side bus. Other products have also awarded in their respective categories.
CleverKeys 1.0 for Mac OS X lets you look up words from almost any application via a contextual menu. It will open a Web browser window with the word definition from Dictionary.com or show synonyms using Thesaurus.com. [Download - form] Thoth 1.7.1 is a $25 shareware usenet newsreader. It has a built-in decoder that handles all the usual encoding methods including yEnc. Version 1.7.1 offers a number of improvements and minor enhancements. [Download - Classic, OS X] Mike Wright has posted iData Pro 1.09 for Mac OS X and iData Pro 1.07 for Classic Mac OS X. The updates are bug fixes to the freeform database application used to store/retrieve URLs, import/organize emails and related files, print envelopes/mailing labels, and catalog other information. [Download - Classic, OS X] Jumsoft announced today the availability of Way 1.0, its application for writing everyday business documents. Way contains many templates built-in, including those for memos, letters, faxes, agendas, reports, etc. The $30 application runs on Mac OS X only. [Download - 1.2MB] equinux has posted APC Tracker 3.0PR1. The software runs parallel to APC's Unlimited Power Supply as a server tool to shut down Mac operating systems in the event of a power failure. Version 3 has been completely rewritten as a Cocoa application to power specifically off Mac OS X and Xserve. It is not yet intended for production usage. [Download - 1.1MB] SymbolicLinker 1.1 is a contextual menu plug-in that allows any user to create 'symbolic links' to files from the Finder. Version 1.1 adds a new icon, and localization support and also promptly notifies the Finder that the directory contents have changed. [Download - 114KB] SupaImage 1.5 ($85) allows you to improve your digital photos by combining the detail of two similar images into one of greater resolution. You can also de-interlace two frames of video into one high quality image. The latest version has small enhancements and bug fixes. [Download - 178KB] Quick-Snap is a free tool that enables you to save frames from any movie file, or convert any image (including PFD, GIF etc) to JPEG. "Just drop the file on the movie pane, shuttle through the movie to find the exact frame you want," the developer says. A 'Pro' version ($15) offers variable compression and other features. [Download - 123KB]
Sendstation Systems today announced the PocketDock, a companion for Apple's 3G (third-generation) iPod. The PocketDock is "smaller than a box of matches and allows a standard 6-pin FireWire cable to connect to the iPodís proprietary docking port. As an additional benefit, the PocketDock lets you use accessories with your new iPod that were designed for previous models, such as car chargers." It will be available later this month for $17, but is available for pre-order immediately.
Kano Technologies has introduced its SLIM-K2Xtreme portable DVD+RW drive. The FireWire/USB 2.0 combo drive measures 5.5"x6"x.75" and weighs only 10 ounces. It features on-the-fly video, audio and data recording with write speeds are 2.4x2.4x8x for DVDs and 16x8x24x for CD-RWs. The Mac version includes Roxio's Toast Lite (for burning CDs and DVDs) and Dantz Retrospect Express (for data backup and restore). The Slim-K2Xtreme is now available for $400.
Apple has unveiled .Mac Bookmarks, a new utility that enables .Mac members ($100 yearly membership) to access their Internet bookmarks from any computer and synchronize their bookmarks with multiple Macs. Users must also have Safari 1.0 and iSync 1.1, which are both free. Apple has also reposted its .Mac Backup 1.2.3 application for .Mac members as well as added several items to its collection of exclusive member perks, including six solitaire games from GameHouse (Golf, Turbo, Klondike, Pyramid, Crescent, and Addiction) and Free Training "Going Digital with iTunes" ("Practice steps, helpful tips, and 28 QuickTime movies show how to use iTunes 4 and your Mac").
Webshots has announced the beta release of Webshots Mac Desktop, a photo wallpaper manager that allows Mac users to decorate their desktops with downloads of any Webshots image. Webshots offers more than 6,500 professional wallpaper photos for free download. Webshots is the "world's largest photo site" with over 26 million registered users. [Download - Classic, OS X]
Apple's Portable Digital Media Lab for U.K. educators now includes a 12-inch PowerBook with DVD-R/CD-RW SuperDrive, a copy of Final Cut Express and superior third-party peripherals: the Canon MV600i camcorder and the IXUS V3 digital camera. "The Portable Digital Media Lab is the ultimate mobile content creation and editing suite for students and teachers," according to Apple. Apple U.K. has also introduced the "Save and Smile" program, which offers £70 back to purchasers of any iBook, iMac or eMac together with a qualifying HP printer or all-in-one product.
Group Logic announced today the availability of the MassTransit Web Client for Mac OS X. The MassTransit Web Client is a key component of the MassTransit Enterprise digital file transfer and remote workflow solution. The Web client is "the only Web browser plug-in designed for digital graphic arts file transfer." This Web transfer client makes it easy for people to transfer print jobs and other files to remote locations using their Web browser. MassTransit is a solution for businesses that buy or provide graphic arts and printing services, including corporations, publishers, printers, prepress companies, and advertising agencies.
Tech news: Microsoft is abandoning stock options, instead will issue shares outright to all its employees, and plans to expense the share costs on its books; several outlets note a new PayPal scam using a valid SSL to dupe users into giving up personal information; and McDonald's say it has equipped dozens of restaurants in the San Francisco Bay Area with paid 802.11b access and has plans to have equip more than 75 Bay Area restaurants in the next few days.
IOPlus has announced that it is now shipping a 1GB model of its PocketDisk. Based on the design of the former smaller megabyte-sized units, the new high-capacity USB flash storage drive has no moving parts, requires no batteries (bus-powered) and offers password protection security for sensitive data as well as bootability. It is available for $350. The drive is also available in 16MB, 32MB, 64MB, 128MB, 256MB and 512MB capacities.
Runtime Revolution today announced the acquisition of the MetaCard engine technology from MetaCard Corporation. MetaCard is a cross-platform multimedia authoring tool and GUI development environment. Revolution, Runtime's flagship multi-platform development system, is built on MetaCard technology. "With the completion of this acquisition, the company gains control over all aspects of the technology and the business direction of its products," according to the press release. Revolution is user-centric development offering natural-language syntax and support for database access, Internet technologies, XML, multimedia, and much more.
Navicat (formerly MySQL Studio) is a set of graphical database management and monitoring tools for MySQL database systems that offers full control over any MySQL database server as well as displays various administrative information. It includes a full featured graphical manager for users and access privileges and that can easily migrate your data from one database to another database and backup your files. It is $88 with a $20 education discount. [775KB] Regress+ 2.5 brings Mac OS X compatibility to the free, Mac-only software package for (univariate) mathematical modeling. The new carbonized version includes options for both deterministic and stochastic modeling as well as bootstrap methodology, choice of optimization criteria, and other advanced features. [1.4MB] Alfred 1.6 is an update to the customizable, universal plug-in manager for Mac OS X. Version 1.6 adds a new file inspector for previewing file info, better performance, improved support for drag and drop, better support for file permissions, more display options, and Japanese localization. The $8 shareware runs on Mac OS X. [2.1MB] Luma Code's Mac Minder 1.3 is a $20 shareware program that helps track and regulate usage of programs in Mac OS X. Version 1.3 adds an option to force quit unresponsive programs via the preferences and an option to display whether a program is managed by Mac Minder in the menubar. [1.0MB] Sillysoft has released has unleashed version 2.3 of its world domination game Lux: It uses the time tested gameplay of the boardgame Risk, but expands it to over a billion different world maps. version 2.3 introduces sound effects and features better multiplayer integration." [2.8MB] OpenDX 4.3 is an open-source project designed for the visualization of scientific, engineering and analytical data. It offers bug fixes, a new user interface, a tree display for the tools, an undo option, automatic graph layout for networks, and better keyboard control. It requires an X-server to run. Photo to Movie 2.1 enables users to create a movie by zooming and panning over photos. The $30 Mac OS X utility adds support for widescreen (16:9) aspect ratio, new Swedish and Dutch translations, a new short tutorial for basic operation, and other improvements. It supports multiple images, curved motion paths, and realtime preview. [1.2MB] Safe Place 1.2 is a password storage database application for Mac OS X. Version 1.2 allows you to secure the database without quitting by simply clicking a toolbar button. It will also lock automatically after ten minutes of inactivity. A 30-day demo of the $10 shareware is available. [5.4MB]
The Associated Press talks about the ramifications of Apple's software strategy, in light of the Adobe's recent Windows-only announcements for two of its products: "Intentionally or not, 'Apple is pursuing a strategy that locks out their third-party software vendors,' said Avi Greengart, analyst with Jupiter Research."
Apple today announced that Avadis "Avie" Tevanian Jr., Ph.D., will become the company's chief software technology officer and Bertrand Serlet will be promoted to senior vice president of Software Engineering. In his new role, Tevanian will focus on setting company-wide software technology directions, and Serlet will now report directly to Apple CEO Steve Jobs and lead the company's OS Software Engineering group.
Now AAPL Stock: 94.27 ( -0.72 )
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
Sonos now works with Apple Music
Wireless music system manufacturer Sonos has announced that its systems worldwide will gain compatibility for streaming the paid Apple Music subscription service starting today, February 10. "Music fans worldwide will have access to Apple Music features like For You, New, Radio, and My Music, and will also be able to stream the entire Apple Music catalog through Sonos smart speakers tuned for great sound in every room of their homes," the company said in an email to journalists. Apple Music's streaming service costs $10 per month, with a free three-month trial. http://bit.ly/1Wdi2Ko