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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: 93.7 ( -0.57 )
TestFlight updated for iOS, watchOS
Apple on Thursday updated its developer-oriented TestFlight software to version 1.3.2 for compatibility with apps being developed for iOS 9.3 watchOS 2.2, along with the usual "stability and performance improvements." Some developers, however, are still reporting some issues loading beta apps onto the watchOS 2.2 beta. The latest beta for developers was released on Monday, and is available through the App Store or Apple's developer portal. [3.60MB] http://apple.co/1PQ64pF
CBS: No recent streaming conversations with Apple
CBS CEO Les Moonves has made remarks, casting doubt on a launch of Apple's live streaming television service. In interviews this week, the executive said regarding negotiations with Apple that "we had conversations awhile back, and we haven't had recent conversations with them," adding that "the phone is always ringing" regarding similar services, but not with Apple on the line. http://cnnmon.ie/1PptJM6
Complex date setting bug crashes 64-bit iOS device
A serious bug has been spotted with iOS devices running iOS 8 or newer, with a 64-bit processor. If a user disables auto-check time, and manually sets the date of a device back to as far as it will go, then again to January 1, 1970, and finally rebooting, the iPhone is crashed, perhaps terminally. The bug affects the iPhone 5s and newer devices, running a processor from the A7 and up. Theories abound as to the cause of the crash, but the most credible seems to be a clock set to less than an arbitrary "zero" date, causing all manners of routines relying on the time setting to fail during startup. http://bit.ly/1TV6psS
Weber buys iDevices' iGrill, Kitchen Thermometer
Cooking gear manufacturer Weber is purchasing iOS accessory manufacturer iDevices iGrill and Kitchen Thermometer lines. As part of the purchase, Weber is working in parallel with iDevices to roll out a new version of the products, and associated apps, this spring. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. CEO of iDevices Chris Allen said that the transition will allow the company to "focus even more heavily on becoming a leader in the home automation market." http://bit.ly/1PFk3uZ
Vevo music video app launched for Apple TV
Vevo today announced its new native tvOS app for the fourth generation Apple TV. The new app allows users Siri Remote navigation for discovery of top videos by genre, or to search for individual artists and videos. Playlists generated on another device sync between all the iterations of the app. http://apple.co/1PFhxEU
HydraDock team unveils USB 3.1 Type C Roadie
KickShark, the team that brought the HydraDock desktop USB-C dock to market, has launched a Kickstarter project for The Roadie -- a USB 3.1 Type C standard-compliant pocket hub for the 12 inch Apple MacBook and other compatible devices. The Roadie occupies the same footprint on a desk as a credit card, with a short USB-C male cable on one end for connecting to a 12 inch MacBook, and a female USB-C port on the other end for plugging in a MacBook power adapter. One side has an RJ45 jack for gigabit Ethernet, and an HDCP-compliant HDMI jack that handles up to 4K displays. KickShark promises shipment of all products within four weeks of campaign completion. The "early bird" offer for the hub is a $69 commitment, with a $79 commitment for a Roadie after 500 backers have pledged. http://kck.st/1o6knw5
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