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Casio today announced its compact QV-R40, a 4.0 megapixel digital camera. It features a 1-second power up time and "industry leading" 0.01-second release time lag along with 3X optical zoom, 5-point Multi Auto Focus, and a compact and elegant aluminum-alloy body. The QV-R40 also features a calendar view of thumbnails, movie mode (320x240), world time/alarm functions, an HTML-based album feature, a SD/MMC Memory Card Slot, and 10MB of built-in Flash Memory. The $300 camera is expected to be available in September with two rechargeable AA-size Nickel Metal Hydride batteries and a USB cable.
Sonnet Technologies today lowerd prices by as much as $100 on various processor upgrades, drive controller PCI cards, and USB/FireWire combo cards.
Casady & Greene's Glider Pro is now available for free distribution. Since the developer's bankruptcy, the rights have been passed on to John Calhoun. Glider is an arcade-style game featuring a paper glider. [Download - Classic, OS X] Mozilla's Firebird 0.6.1 fixes a few critical issues in standalone web browser that features an integrated Google search, find-as-you-type technology, tabbed browsing, and other advanced features. It has a new application icon, rich text editing support, and an an improved default theme, including updated toolbar icons. [Download - 11MB] Ben Bird has released of SecuritySpy 1.0b26, an update to his $50 multi-camera video surveillance software for the Macintosh. SecuritySpy runs native on both Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X. Improvements in Beta 26 include: independent camera operation, enhancements to the browser, reduced processor usage, and bug fixes. [Download - 714KB] SoftIntegration has released its free Ch ODBC 3.5 for the MySQL Connector/ODBC (MyODBC) driver, allowing C scripts to connect to the MySQL database. Ch ODBC allows C programmer to write database-independant code once and run everywhere. Ch is a C/C++ interpreter for cross-platform scripting, shell programming, and 2D/3D graphical plotting. [Download - 43KB] FrameSeer is a $50 network packet capture application for the Macintosh. Packet-capture tools are "essential aids" for diagnosing communications problems, investigating network security breaches, and for general network performance monitoring and troubleshooting tasks. [Download - 716KB] RBrowserLite 3.2 provides access to files on the local host as well as remote FTP Servers with an easy-to-use graphical interface. Version 3.2 adds support for multiple displays, and implements minor bug fixes. There are $30 Basic (FTP-SFTP protocols) and $50 Professional (Local, FTP, FTP/SSL/TLS, SFTP, UNIX, SSH/SCP) licenses. [Download - Lite, Pro] LimeWire 3.4.1b is a beta version of the popular Gnutella file-sharing client for Mac OS X. The latest version adds a new "find more sources" button, and easier theme access. [Download - 4.6MB] Runtime Revolution today announced the availability of Revolution 2.1b2 for public beta testing. Revolution is a $75 user-centric multi-platform development tool for developers of varying abilities. Revolution 2.1 contains dozens of new features including improved conformity with the Mac OS X and Aqua interface style guidelines. [Download - 13.3MB] St. Clair Software has posted a new public beta version of Default Folder X 1.8, its utility for enhancing Open and Save dialogs in Mac OS X. Beta 5 fine-tunes the settings and performance of new features. [Download - 3.1MB]
MacSoft today announced that Neverwinter Nights ($50) for Mac OS X has shipped and will be available on retail shelves as early as today: "[it] is an epic realization of the fantasy setting of Dungeons and Dragons. Set in the turbulent world of the Forgotten Realms, and using the most comprehensive adoption of the 3rd edition rules to date." The English-language version should be available in Europe in about a week; French and German versions will be available "soon."
Aspyr announced today that it will be publishing X2 Wolverine's Revenge for the Macintosh. The port is being done by i5works and is currently at the final candidate stage. "Now, as Wolverine -- the X-men's most dangerous weapon -- you've discovered you were also implanted with a deadly virus that will kill you within the next 48 hours unless the anitdote is found."
iTunes sales continue to fall, according to a report by Slyck: "In the first day April 28th iTunes sales were at 200,000 per day...by June 23rd meaning the average daily sales had now hit 89,000. The figure hit 6.5 million on July 22nd translating into 52,000 sales per day. The sales figure may reflect seasonal variance and other launch hype related factors. However, there is a clear decline in place and with iTunes still failing to sign up some big bands, the perceived success of iTunes is not quite what all are making it out to be."
Maxon has released BodyPaint 3D Release 2, an update to its $700 3D texturing application. It adds new easy-to-use UV tools for distortion free painting and allows textures to be painted onto a 3D model without UV seams. Release 2 also features full OpenGL support, Adobe Photoshop filter support, intelligent on-the-fly switching between hardware and software shading, and support for the latest Wacom tablets. BodyPaint 3DR2 also offers file exchange plugins for 3ds max, Maya and Lightwave. It requires Cinema 4DR8.
Apple UK Hotnews notes that Apple UK has launched three new Final Cut promotions, including £170 instant rebate on Final Cut Express with the purchase of any Mac, a £300 mail-in rebate on Final Cut Pro for users of Adobe Premiere, and a free version of Final Cut Express when users mail-in an Adobe Premiere install CD (Version 5.x or above). All offers end September 20th. Apple UK Hotnews also notes that Apple will have a major presence at IBC (Hall 7, Stand 621), which takes place at the RAI in Amsterdam from September 12-16.
Apple says it is on pace to launch a Windows-based version of the iTunes Music Store by the end of the year and that it intends to launch a PC service with broad content-usage rights similar to those enjoyed by iTunes consumers using Mac computers, according to BillBoard Bulletin: "Additionally, Apple says it has sold more than 300,000 iPod portable players since the bow of iTunes in April. Lowe maintained that Apple is not looking to music to serve as a loss-leader business for iPod sales." The article quotes an industry executive as saying that the consistent 99 cent per song download price will begin to flucuate up and down depending on the song and that the industry will experiment with different pricing models with "up to half a dozen" companies debut digital music services this Fall with the final pricing determined by the volume of online music purchases.
Kensington has launched a new line of MicroSaver computer locks, including the new MicroSaver Guaranteed Notebook Replacement ($55), which includes a laptop replacement guarantee of up to $1,500 per incident with its aircraft-grade steel, Kevlar brand fiber and stainless steel design. Kensington also introduced a new standard MicroSaver ($45), which includes Kevlar brand fiber and the new ComboSaver ($40), its strongest, convenient keyless computer cable lock.
MacNN reader Matthew Burgener writes "I called Compusa today because their website indicates that the new crop of G5 machines will begin shipping on August 5. I spoke with Kyle in Austin and he indicated that the dual-2GHz G5 won't ship for at least seven weeks and the other single processor G5s won't ship for 4-6 weeks." Meanwhile, another reader notes that some locations are offering a 5% discount on purchases of $1500 or more to students with a Student ID (or an Acceptance Letter from a college).
MacNN reader Frank Meister notes that Symantec's NUM 8.0, bundled in System Works 3.0, is unable to defragment drives with a large number of files: "The directory structures on disk are too large for the current version of Norton Utilities. Utilities." The Symantec online knowledge base confirms this problem when running Norton Disk Doctor 8.0 or Speed Disk 8.0, but provides no solution.
c't has released iBookScreenEnhancer, an AppleScript which enables iBook users to use two non-synchronized monitors--the internal LCD and an external monitor with up to 1920x1440 resolution: "I have been using it for several days to drive a huge LCD display - and it's just fine. Simply start the application once - that's it. You can even uninstall the feature." [22KB] Gideon Softworks has released Snard v1.7 ($10), which it dubs the "Swiss Army Knife" of launcher programs. It provides many of Mac OS 9's Apple and Application menu functions and can be (extensively) customized. It can be used as a system menu or as a hot-key activated popup menu. [660KB] Bebosoft's Forms To Go 1.7 is a form to email script generator in PHP, ASP and Perl languages. The $11 shareware script can optionally validate field input for proper value format It can preset validations based on field names and embed the result pages on a generated script that includes a custom error message. [Classic, OSX] Moviemaker for P800 ($10) allows you to create movies for playback on the Sony Ericsson P800 smartphone. It offers one-click (and custom) conversion of DV footage into a compressed file, which is optimized for playback on the P800's built-in video player: "a half-hour TV show fits onto a 32MB Memorystick." [851KB] Extensis has released Font Reserve 3.1.2, a free update its system font utility for managing fonts. The update provides enhanced performance for auto-activation, the auto-activation plug-ins, and the Classic Activator. Extensis also has a FAQ for Suitcase and Font Reserve owners. [Classic, OSX] NewsMac 2.4.1 is a free Java-based RSS reader for Mac OS X. It offers customizable toolbar layout and functions, one-click access to stories, a Finder-like column view, iPod and Palm OS device synchronization (via iSiloXC), and the ability to copy channel headlines as text or HTML. [276KB] HyperSpell 1.0b4 is a menu item that gives quick access to Mac OS X's built-in spellchecker: "Words that are misspelled appear with a red underline. You can then control-click (or right-click) on the misspelled words to reveal a list of possible spellings." It is free during the beta period. [288KB] Griffin Technology has released Total Remote Software 1.11, which allows uses to use their Pocket PC as a master remote control for many IR-based remotes. The free update for the Total Remote ($30) adds a new device category for satellite systems and cable boxes and includes many performance enhancements and bug fixes. [1.1MB]
Snerdware has released AddressX, the first component of an integration suite for Mac OS X and Microsoft Exchange Server 2000 that allows users to view and search an Exchange 2000 Global Address List (GAL) directly from within Mac OS X's Address Book: "there is no software to install on the Exchange server. [It] is completely transparent.... Contacts are made available on- or off-line and from any application that integrates with the Address Book such as Apple Mail or iCal."
FireWire Depot today debuted a new 2.5" portable FireWire drive enclosure: the FireXpress250SDX is an ultra-slim (9.5mm) brushed metal enclosure, offering both standard FireWire (1394a) and USB 2.0 interfaces. The FireXpress250SDX kits, which will accept any 9.5mm hard drive, include an IEEE 1394 cable, USB cable, software, vinyl carrying pouch, and a "FireCable" universal FireWire power supply. It is expected to ship on August 8th for $100. The company also introduced new FireWire 800 cables and FireWire 800 bridgeboards. [updated]
The Omni Group has released OmniGraffle 2.2, an update to its Mac OS X diagramming application. The new version provides a number of bug fixes, and enhances the ability for 2.x to read 3.0 files. OmniGraffle 2.2 also provides improvements to the Software Update function: "This is our halo release of the 2.0 series. We wanted to support our 2.0 customers with this update, but development on OmniGraffle is now focused on 3.0 ($70) and 3.0 Professional ($120)." Upgrades start at $25.
Apple will begin selling its products at David Jones department stores in Australia, according to ARN: " Apple computers are coming soon to a David Jones store near you. In fact, Sydneysiders have been able to buy a full range of Apple gear from the chain’s Sydney city store for several weeks. Apple’s resellers were informed of the move at its recent channel conference at Hamilton Island. The vendor had been keeping quiet about the move back into the department store market, as it was still in pilot phase, according to marketing manager, Arno Lenior."
Now AAPL Stock: 93.99 ( + 0.29 )
Apple to open R&D center in India
A new report says that Apple will be opening a new technology center in Hyderabad, India, helping to boost the city's growing reputation as a tech center. The facility would operate within the WaveRock facility, and create 4,500 new jobs at a cost of around $25 million. In 2015, India surpassed the $1 billion in yearly sales milestone, and Apple has recently received permission to open retail stores in the country under its own control, an exception to rules that usually block foreign ownership. http://zd.net/1SMBVu4
Google killing Picasa starting May 1
Google Photos head Anil Sabharwal confirmed in a blog post today that the search engine giant will be shutting down acquisition Picasa. Support and downloads for the desktop application will terminate on March 15 with the application continuing to work for the time being. The transition to Google Photos truly commences on May 1, with deprecation of some Picasa API calls happening shortly thereafter. Users that have Google Photos access will find their photos already migrated. A mass-download tool for users not wishing to use Google Photos will be available sometime after May 1. http://bit.ly/1SmV2KH
Rogue Amoeba Piezo updated, departing App Store
In order to continue working on audio capture tool Piezo, developer Rogue Amoeba has simultaneously updated the app to version 1.5, and announced that it will pull version 1.2.6 from the Mac App Store. Customers who own the Mac App Store version have a one-time migration process to the Rogue Amoeba-served version. The company notes that the sandboxing restriction placed on Mac App Store versions "effectively stopped our ability to upgrade Piezo in any meaningful way." [8.80MB] http://bit.ly/1PIjz7l
FCC spectrum auction will happen without Google
After throwing its hat in earlier, Google (and associated companies) has declared that it is not participating in this year's FCC spectrum auction. A company spokeswoman said of the auction that "like all those interested in improved connectivity and equitable access, we'll be following the upcoming spectrum auction closely. That said, we have not filed to participate." http://on.recode.net/1oy5LWk
iPad Air 3, iPhone 5se sold Friday after launch?
Reverting the way products are actually released by Apple after an announcement to the way it was a decade ago, reports are circulating that new products revealed at a March announcement will go on sale the Friday immediately following the unveil. Slated to appear at a conjectural Tuesday, March 15 event are a new Apple four-inch phone with more up to date internals currently referred to as the iPhone 5se, and a new iPad Air 3 model with Smart Connector and other enhancements. http://bit.ly/1o7mqiY
Lexmark prevails in toner import appeal
Printer manufacturer Lexmark has won an appeal on the third-party US resale of its printer cartridges originally destined for markets outside North America. The appeals court ruled in a 10-2 vote in favor of Lexmark's demand to stop the sale and against Impression Products, both on the toner cartridge resale matter, as well as a related matter regarding overturning the reseller's refilling one-use cartridges and selling those in the US market. The ruling has ramifications in the tech industry, as well as the pharmaceutical and medical technology markets. Impression Products promises an appeal before the supreme court. http://reut.rs/1SLVmmG
AT&T expands BOGO promo to iPhone 6s
Beginning today, new and existing AT&T customers can purchase a new iPhone 6s and get another one free when adding a second line. Over the weekend, customers must purchase two phones through AT&T Next (one can be an existing number), and add both phones to a qualified plan. AT&T notes that "after three bill cycles or less" the account will start to receive up to $650 spread out over 30 monthly bill credits to offset the cost of the installment plan for the phone. Taxes are due at time of sale. http://soc.att.com/1SLUP4k