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Apple is set to revise its logo with a new silvery chrome finish, according to Wired News and AppleInsider, who published a report earlier this week: "The logo's shape remains unchanged -- an apple with a bite taken out of the right side. The effect is a lot like the chrome female robots of Hajime Sorayama. At least, that's the best guess of Apple watchers, who spotted the new logo in the latest test version of Apple's OS X operating system. It is not clear whether Apple will adopt the new silver logo for product design, as well as marketing and packaging, or simply restrict it to the new software," according to Wired.
FireWire Depot (FD) today introduced the PDS2GO 2.5" drive enclosure, which offers both 1394a and USB 2.0 connectivity--utilizing the Oxford 911 chip for FireWire and the NEC controller for USB2. The new enclosure is all aluminum except for the interchangeable front bezel and foot stand for placing the enclosure in a vertical orientation. Three interchangeable front bezels and foot stands are included (blue, clear and grape) as well as a combination lock, cable for securing the drive and a leather carry case. It will ship next week for $95. FD also debuted a new FireWire-based drive bay with integrated hardware-based RAID controllers. The FWEIDE525Q-R1 ($400) enclosure offers a RAID-1 (mirror) controller, hotswap functions for two (master/slave) IDE devices (one 3.5" and one 5.25" device), and support for UDMA 133 and 48-bit addresing for drives larger than 128GB as well as includes a front- and rear-mounted FireWire (1394a) ports, a 200W power supply, a built-in cooling fan, and auto/manual rebuild functions for the drive array. The FWBEIDE525D-R5 ($700) integrates a hardware RAID-5 (striping) controller, three 3.5" drive bays supporting "hotswap," and two FireWire 800 and a single FireWire 400 ports.
Informatix this week told MacNN it plans on shipping the Mac OS X version of Piranesi in late October. The 3D painting application, launched at Apple Expo earlier this month, has a number of Mac-only enhancements. The company provided MacNN with a number of screenshots of the interface, including the Cutout Manager, Palette Brush Settings, and ToolBox as well as a Filter/Emboss sample effect. It will be available for $750, the same price as the Windows version.
MacNN reader Wayne Linder notes that his new 12" PowerBook has been delayed by two weeks: "I ordered my 12 inch PBG4 from the Apple Developer Store as soon as it opened up after the Paris Keynote (about 4 am local time). I had until yesterday a shipping date of 9/25. Last night, that date came and went. This morning, I find that the date has been changed to 10/6! Yes, it is a CTO machine, but only the RAM has changed." Meanwhile, several readers have reported receipt of the new 15" Aluminum PowerBooks in our MacNN Forums.
QuickMix 1.0 is a multitrack video-editing application: "Tracks can be viewed and edited independently of each other and can be temporarily combined to be previewed or exported as a movie file." The QuickTime-compatible application offers the ability to specify track offsets, the ability to speed up/slow down clips, control over playback and selection times, unlimited undo/redo, and the ability to combine tracks into one and split them apart again. It is $20 and requires both Mac OS X 10.2 or later and QuickTime 6 or later.
Apple today posted the latest upgrade to its AirPort Extreme Base Station 5.1.3 firmware (for both Mac and Windows clients). The update offers improvements to security, USB printing, and interference robustness as well as the abiltiy to specify a DHCP range when running NAT, simpler WDS setup, and performance improvements to both wired and wireless clients. [Mac OS X]
Readers of the MacNN forums today discuss a number of topics: Apple customers are beginning to report receiving shipments of dual-2GHz Power Mac G5 orders; the first new Power Mac G5 'Kryptonic Beast' mod; Apple's increasing share of the laptop market, now at a purported seven percent; several threads relating to Mac OS X 10.3 "Panther," the latest version of Apple's operating system; a new "aluminum alloy" appearance theme for Mac OS X; the best encoding format for digital music.
Afternoon tech news: Yahoo! has begun blocking Cerulean Studios' Trillian software from communicating with its own instant messaging software (yesterday, we noted that Mac clients had been blocked); Amazon.com is invading Google's turf with a new online search engine company that hopes to pluck some of the profits flowing into the rapidly growing sector; Vivendi Universal Games said today that the developers of "Half-Life 2," the most heavily anticipated video game of 2003, will not release the game on Tuesday as originally planned.
Cocktail 2.6 updates the $10 shareware utility for Mac OS X 10.2 that simplifies the use of advanced UNIX functions, gives access to hidden Mac OS X settings and let you easily optimize your system. It adds MTU settings, new specifications display, and interface improvements. [1.0MB] PDiQue 1.2 (aka iQue on USB) is a program for Mac OS X 10.2.6 and later to update Palm Desktop 4.1 for use with the Garmin iQue 3600 PDA on USB without a serial adaptor. [607KB] PodMail 1.0 is designed to transfer .Mac email to your iPod. The freeware requires Mac OS X 10.2 and a second-generation iPod. [29KB] Aspyr has released Tiger Woods PGA Golf 2003 1.1b, a beta release of the patch, that fixes issues with Mac OS 9 and ATI cards, including startup problems with ATI cards. It also now runs much faster on ATI Radeon 8500 and 9000 cards under Jaguar, adds support for native resolution of Apple 15" and 17" displays, and other enhancements. [1.8MB] form·Z 4.0.1 is a general-purpose solid and surface modeler with an extensive set of 2D/3D form manipulating and sculpting capabilities. Version 4.0.1 is G5-compatible and "corrects a number of irregularities." [1.1MB] Maple 9.02 is an update to the suite of intuitive tools for business analysts, technical professionals, and math and science educators. It brings improvements to plotting, file and plot export, standard math editing and formatting, printing, and help pages as well as reduced startup time. It is a free update to the $1,800 (commercial)/$1000 (academic) application. [form] Pixelglow Software has updated macstl, its C++ source library, to version 0.1.3, which now works with Metrowerks Codewarrior 9. The new version also features 65,566 different generated Altivec constants, and all the standard Altivec operators in a neat object-oriented package. [2.2MB]
Caldera has released Caldera Graphics Suite 6, a a new Mac OS X-native version of its professinal imaging solution. The suite includes CopyShop ($3,000), an integrated desktop Scan-to-Print and/or File-to-Print system driving large format devices; VisualRIP ($2,750), a client/server solution for processing large format color printing; VisualRIP+ ($4,350) with tiling, nesting, and Spot Color management as well as PostScript/PDF and Tiff-IT RIPs; ReproShop ($6,900), its universal solution for large format color reproduction; and GrandrRIP, which provides drivers for large format printers. Other products include PDF-Server ($1,450) to create PDF images and Collection ($4,350), its image database server with Web access.
Aspyr Media today announced it will be bringing Command & Conquer Generals, a 3D real-time strategy game, to the Macintosh. The game is licensed from Electronic Arts and the Macintosh conversion is being done by i5works: "Command & Conquer Generals puts players’ trigger fingers on the pulse of modern warfare as they become a powerful general and control massive armies of bleeding-edge military weaponry across a globe teetering on the brink of Armageddon. Players can annihilate the opposition in the 22-mission single-player campaign or dish out the damage in global multiplayer mayhem." The title is available for pre-order for $50. Aspyr told MacNN that it hopes to ship the product in January 2004.
Ultimate Technographics has released Impostrip 7.0, its innovative client-server imposition workflow application. It offers full Mac OS X support for desktop or client-server imposition, preview of imposed PDF signature based on Quartz Extreme in Impostrip, greater performance and speed of RIP and print engine, leveraging multitasking in Mac OS X, CIP 4 JDF workflow support, and expanded support for several updated/upgraded design and publishing applications. The Solo version is shipping now, while the 'All Jazzed Up' version is due at the end of October.
MacNN reader Gary Allen writes: "The syndicated 'Dr. Phil' TV show is a Macintosh user! As part of Dr. Phil McGraw's daily program, he created 'Dr. Phil's Families,' to help them solve various crises they're facing. As part of this on-going program, he visits with them daily via videoconferencing. What solution is he using? The latest episode of Dr. Phil's program showed a session between a family and Dr. Phil, and the family had a new iMac equipped with an iSight camera and iChat AV software. In fact, as the camera showed Dr. Phil's face on the iMac screen, and the family in the foreground, a graphic stated just that: iSight and iChatAV. The video and audio quality was great! I can only assume he provides the iMac, along with a DSL connection."
Other World Computing today announced it has add a 1.GHz G4 processor ($350) and also reduced prices on its Mercury Extreme G4 AGP processor upgrade line, featuring 256KB of 1:1 L2 cache on-chip and 2MB of high-speed SPD or DDR L3 Cache operating at up to 267MHz. They are compatible with PowerMac G4 AGP Graphics (Sawtooth), Gigabit Ethernet, Digital Audio and Quicksilver models and support Mac OS 9.2.1 and higher, as well as Mac OS X. The line is available in G4/800MHz ($250), G4/1.25GHz ($450), G4/1.3GHz ($500), and G4/1.4GHz ($580) models. Each is backed by a three-year warranty and a 30-day 100 percent money-back guarantee.
The freeware AppleGMACEthernet Patcher 1.0.1 "will only run under Mac OS X 10.2.8 and addresses an issue where ethernet access is lost after updating Mac OS X 10.2.6 to 10.2.8. You should only use this utility if you are having problems with your network connection." [84KB] EZPZapps has released Kartolina 2.0, an update to its $15 digital photo tool for OS X. Kartolina 2.0 provides immediate access to iPhoto Albums or any folder of images, enabling users to create cards, invitations, or business advertising material effortlessly. Text, photo placement and scaling, and color backgrounds can be applied to an image. [Classic, OSX] Kerio MailServer 5.7 is an update to the the mail server designed for corporate networks. It offrs support for multiple protocols (SSL, IMAP4, WAP, POP3, SMTP), multiple domains, several authentication protocols, support for virus scanning, Webmail features, and anti-spam functions. Pricing starts at $400 for 20 users. The freeware Xkeys 1.1.1 "allows you to open applications, files and folders just by pressing a function key. Function keys can have submenus, further extending the amount of items you can access quickly." [1.8MB] Doug's AppleScripts for iTunes has posted several new and updated free AppleScripts for iTunes including iTunes Track CPR (re-associate MIA tracks); Wrangle Same-Named Tracks (eliminate same-named tracks); Downstream (remove streams from main library); iTunes to AppleWorks DB v0.9.1 (create AppleWorks database); and Export Selected Song List (exports song info). AlphaX 8.0b11 is the second public beta release of AlphaX, the Mac OS X native version of the Alpha8 text editor. AlphaX is only supported on Mac OS X 10.2 or later and requires the Tcl/Tk Aqua Batteries-Included 8.4.4 distribution to be installed. It is $30 shareware. [9.2MB]
Stone Design has updated Stone Studio ($300), its Mac OS X suite of applications that includes Create, a 3-in-1 illustration, page layout and web authoring application and PStill, its PDF workflow application. Create 11.2 ($150) offers Panther compatibility, drag & drop support for .doc files, and other enhancements. PStill 3.0 ($70) can now create Secure PDFs with user/authoring passwords and either 40- or 128-bit encryption as well as adds support for Type 4 fonts, PDF transcoding and PDF spec 1.5 for Acrobat 6 compatibility. The updated suite also includes the latest version of GIFfun 3.8, its freeware application for creating animated GIFs.
Nisus Software has released Nisus Thesaurus 1.0, its new electronic thesaurus that automatically integrates with any Service aware application including Nisus Writer Express, Mail, TextEdit, Safari, and more. Nisus Thesaurus is based on the WordNet lexical database and features a 120,000 word database, an easy-to-use Cocoa based interface, integration with any services enabled application, built-in glossary, an offensive words filter and more. It is also compatible with Mac OS X 10.3 (Panther). It is available as a free download.
The CTO for a technology firm that works closely with Microsoft lost his job after he helped write a study critical of the insecurity of Microsoft software, according to the AP: "Critics said Geer's firing was reflective of Microsoft's far-reaching ability in Washington and across the technology industry to silence experts who complain about weaknesses in its software or its aggressive business practices." The article also notes that the CCIA trade group was unable to send a paid announcement about its critical Microsoft report to 140,000 subscribers of popular trade magazines for CTO and CSO's because the material was too sensitive.
Freeverse Software has announced that Active Lancer, its new vertical-scrolling shooter has gone 'gold' and has been sent to duplication: "For 1 or 2 players, Active Lancer features full-screen arcade action, network play, an awesome original soundtrack, and pure old-school adrenaline. Join Lancer Squad, an elite team of flight capable soldiers, on their current mission to defeat the diabolical war machine of an alien army bent on taking over the universe." Active Lancer will be available at the Apple Stores and other fine Mac outlets as well as from the Freeverse online store for $20.
Apple has added new .Mac exclusive offers for members of its online Web service, including free iBlog software ($20 value, good through 11/25/03) that "lets you publish weblogs of news, reviews, commentary, and journals on the Internet without worrying about formatting, archiving, or site maintenance" and up to $40 off three of SmartDisk's FireWire drives at the online Apple Store through October 22 as well as other offers from VersionTracker. (Readers also note that Apple Japan is also offering a special TV tuner/iMac promo, which is not presently available in the US.)
Jumsoft's Keynote Themes 2.8 ($25) now includes 15 high-quality themes for Keynote, Apple's presentation software. New themes ("Elegant Pro" and "PorTable"), and old themes, are available in 1024x768 and 800x600 sizes. "PorTable" theme is exclusively created for the 15-inch PowerBook G4 screen while "Elegant Pro" is a professional theme and comes with extras and many different layouts. Keynote Themes also includes an application for controlling Keynote using a cell phone.
Harmonic Inversion Technology has announced a new VTBook PC Card video card for Apple's PowerBooks. Developed by VillageTronic, the Type II PC Card works with both Mac OS 9/X and and offers 1920x1200 resolution with VTBook's 32MB of 266MHz DDR memory. VTBook supports resolutions from 512x349 through 1920x1200 at millions of colors and offers new Screen Doubler technology, which provides a virtual desktop that is double the size of the display itself--autoscrolling when the edge of the screen is reached. It is hot swappable under Mac OS 9, supports Deep Sleep and Hibernation, and Quartz 2D acceleration under Mac OS X. The $250 PC card ships with a DVI connector as well as a VGA adapter.
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