Writing his first column after switching to Mac OS X, Infoworld's CTO says that "there are some specific technology issues that Mac OS X addresses really well. Perhaps the most compelling reason to consider Mac OS X is astoundingly simple: Itís a Unix-based system that runs software such as Microsoft Office and Adobe Photoshop. First and foremost, overall security is much easier to tackle than with Windows...The 'it just works' quality of Mac OS X also saves a lot of time and frustration -- what your pro-Mac friends and colleagues have been telling you is definitely true."
Several MacNN readers note problems with Apple's iTunes radio services, as confirmed by dozens of posts in Apple's support forums--though some have found that manually visiting the sites and/or adding specific DNS entries have solved the problem: "All internet radio listings on iTunes are routed through an Apple owned servers at kts-af.net. This is currently offline and not responding to any queries. Manually going to the web sites that hosted my favorite streams and manually selecting their MP3 broadcasts brought most of them back. But the links to Apple's services are gone."
Softhing's Entourage Email Archive X 1.7 ($20) is an update to the company's utility for archiving emails and attachments you have received or sent using Microsoft Entourage X in Mac OS X. It offers functions to archive to the Finder, to text file, or to tab-text format. [735KB] MPEG2Works 2.0 is will allow users to author/convert movies to MPEG2/MPEG1 DVD/SVCD/VCD-ready audio/video files. Version 2.0 adds open/save dialogs, a progress bar, an improved GUI, more NTSC/VCD scripts, and ne Tools and Audio tabs. The freeware for Mac OS X supports over 20 input movie formats. [953KB] The freeware Ollie's Tab 1.2 adds a convenient 'Tab' button at the top of Safari Version 1.2 adds a remover tool to restore Safari to its original configuration. [317KB] Colourfull Creations has updated Max Bidder 1.5, which adds a check box for time sync issues, a search for similar items, and other enhancements to the company's eBay auction tool. It is $10 and runs on Mac OS 9/X. [Classic, OSX] ImageIP's Distort and Morph plugin pack for iMovie offers a variety of high-quality same-name effects and transitions, including "Morph Clip" (transition from one frame to another), magnification, "Tilt Plate," "Morph Over", and "Wash Away" and "Wash up". It is $25 and supports iMovie 2/3 under Mac OS X 10.2.4. [404KB] CopyWrite is a project-based writer tool: "Whether you're writing for business or pleasure, a magazine article or the next Great American Novel, CopyWrite isn't intended to be your everything-processor." A limited version of the $20 application is available for free. [4.4MB] AimSniff 1.2 simply gives you the IP of an AOL Instant Messenger user when you make a direct connection with them: "All the user needs to do is to make a direct connection with the other user, and once itís made simply click on the sniff button and you will have their IP." [809KB]
Florida's Pinellas County school disctrict is phasing out Macs in a favor of supporting a single-platform environment: "The directive came from Pinellas County superintendent Howard Hinesley, who wants to the district to use one type of computer instead of two. That decision has angered some administrators and teachers who can't fathom parting with their Apple computers, even if it won't happen for several years. Two of every three computers owned by the school district are Apples."
As anticipated earlier this month, Popwire is now shipping its Compression Engine 1.4, a a high performance digital media coding solution for Broadcasting companies, media houses, ISP and mobile operators. Compression Engine simplifies the process of distributing content in multiple formats and transcoding between incompatible systems. Version 1.4 includes 2-Pass encoding, MPEG-4 advanced profile, extended MPEG-2, and DV as well as support for GXF files as ewll as new and improved filters and optimized performance. It runs on Mac OS X and Solaris platforms.
Now AAPL Stock: 93.24 ( -0.95 )
Netflix iOS app now offers cell-data controls
In a new update to its iOS app on Thursday, subscription entertainment service Netflix has introduced new user controls for streaming over cellular networks to prevent overages, throttling, or other usage issues caused by the high data rate of streamed HD video. Users can choose from a given amount of streaming video that "costs" 1GB of cellular data, which lowers video quality to allow as much as four hours of video per GB (the "automatic" setting provides three hours, while higher quality settings reduce the time to two hours, or one hour at the best setting). In addition, the updated app now offers more 3D Touch options from the app icon, beyond the "peek and pop" previews for video. http://apple.co/24AD1vR
Bentley launches app for Apple Watch
Carmaker Bentley now offers an Apple Watch app for its Bentayga SUV -- a vehicle with a starting price of $229,000 -- that offers some advanced automotive functions not previously seen in other car apps for Apple's wearable. The app allows Watch wearers to control various seat adjustments, environmental controls (including seat massage), and the entertainment system. In addition, various vehicle stats are available at a glance, including distance traveled and vehicle speed. The app is available free on the App Store. http://apple.co/24AyXvs
Lunch with Cook auction nets $515K
The Charitybuzz auction that offered lunch with Apple CEO Tim Cook at Apple HQ and a pair of passes to a future Apple event (winner's pick) has ended with a high bid of $515,000, the highest amount the annual auction has fetched since 2013. Proceeds of the auction will benefit Cook's preferred charity, the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights organization, where Cook was recently named to the board of directors. The winner, who was unnamed, will be responsible for their own transportation and accommodation, and Cook has up to a year to schedule the meeting -- making it possible that the winner will be among the first to dine with Cook in the new Campus 2 cafeteria, which is set to open along with the rest of the new facility early next year. http://bit.ly/236Wf9N
Free Windows 10 upgrade program ends July 29
Ending speculation, Microsoft has officially announced that it will end free Windows 10 upgrades on July 29, the one-year anniversary of the rollout of the OS. Following the 29th, Microsoft's ubiquitous OS will retail for $119 and up. http://bit.ly/1O0a7kA
US tech giants to candidates: support TPP
Tech giants including Apple, Facebook, Amazon and Uber are among thirteen major US corporations who have written an open letter to Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton urging them to support the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal, reports Reuters. Although not yet made public, the letter also asks the candidates to make it easier for the companies to hire tech workers from overseas. Both are not happy with the TPP deal, although Trump is sterner in his opposition to any kind of trade deals between countries. Trump has not rejected outright the idea of importing high-tech talent from overseas, while Clinton has already voiced her support for the idea. http://reut.rs/1Wb0Zwq
Apple mandates June 1 app IPv6 support
Apple has set the deadline for IPv6 support for App Store-supplied software. On June 1, apps thast use a custom networking stack and that are submitted to the app store must support IPv6-only networks. The rule, announced last year as coming soon, will only affect a small portion of submitted applications that do not use the NSURLSession and CFNetwork APIs. http://apple.co/24yBTIY
YouTube Unplugged OTT service coming 2017?
As part of the continuing YouTube evolution, the video streaming service is reportedly considering a paid subscription service that would provide users "over the top" cable TV service. According to sources familiar with the matter, the service has been in the works since 2012, has already made changes to accommodate the live video feeds, and could debut the offering as soon as 2017. http://bloom.bg/1rvx8BW