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Tech news: Four men pleaded guilty yesterday to conspiracy to commit criminal copyright infringement as participants in the "warez scene."; Toshiba is showing off the latest version of its fuel cell for portable devices, but problems with the new technology have delayed its introduction until 2005; HP is offering users of rival Sun's Solaris $25,000 in free services and equipment as an incentive to switch to Linux-based HP systems; and New OpenSSL patches, already included in Mac OS X 10.2.8, have been released to fix three holes in the open-source software.
cmiStudios is offering three different DVD tutorials on Shake, Apple's compositing and effects solution for film and HD. The tutorials are 90 minutes in length and are designed for new, intermediate, and advanced users of Shake. Each is $50. The new and intermediate tutorials are available now, while Advanced Shake is due in mid-October. All are available with free international shipping. All three are available for $130. The company has also posted a free tutorial on Smoking Text.
MacSpeech has released ScriptPak for Microsoft Word X, which adds over 150 spoken commands to the company's flagship speech recognition product iListen. The Microsoft Word X ScriptPak includes commands that allow the user to control most of Word's functions with voice commands. It is $20. DCIT has released BusinessMind for Jewelers 3.10, an update to its SQL-based business software suite featuring dozens of new reporting, POS, and inventory management features, and ease-of-use improvements. The new version is available as separate products for jewelry Retailers, Wholesalers, and Manufacturers. Xupport 1.3.7 ($20) adds several new functions to the utility that offers a GUI for dozens of system functions. It adds a browser for using commands (using the 'man' unix engine), new delete and burn functions for Mac OS 9, and new preferences to change window transparencies, check for updates on launch, and enable audio effects. [387KB] MacChampion has released Scenario 1.0, a $10 shareware script launching utility which allows the user to trigger AppleScripts when certain events occur (log-in/log-out, sleep/wake, idle/stop idel, hot keys). It works as a Preference Pane for Mac OS X (10.2 and up). [1.7MB] Lightsoft has released Kairos 2.10, a $20 shareware that records the weather conditions for up to 3 locations and graphs the data. Kairos can be programmed with alerts that can send out emails and run scripts when triggered and also can speak the weather and display current conditions in the dock. [2.1MB] Geo-Calc 1.2 ($10) is a geometry calculator which computes the area, perimeter, sides, angles and the height of common 2D figures such as Ellipses, Rectangles, Triangles, Trapeziums, Parallelograms and Polygons, and the volume, surface, and sides of 3D figures such as Prisms, Cylinders, Cones, Pyramids and Spheres. [747KB] SubRosaSoft DesktopEarth 1.3 downloads real time global cloud maps, then superimposes them on the map of your choice (political, geographic, elevation etc...) and sets it as your desktop picture. [3.4MB]
Apple's Mall of America Apple Store in Bloomington, MN will be closed for nearly a month for remodeling: "From October 6 to November 11 at 6 p.m., our doors will be closed for remodeling. During this time, we’ll be making a few improvements, including a larger theater, to make your Apple Store experience better than ever." The Mall of America location was the fourth Apple retail store to open in the U.S on August 11, 2001. Another reader notes that the Tysons Corner store in McLean, VA will also be closed from October 13 through November 17.
Apple's Security Team has announced that the re-released Mac OS X 10.2.8 Update (Build 6R73) contains the same security enhancements as the first update, including previously undescribed enhancements for recently revealed OpenSSL announcements: "Fixes CAN-2003-0543, CAN-2003-0544, CAN-2003-0545 to address potential issues in certain ASN.1 structures and in certificate verification code. To deliver the update in a rapid and reliable manner, only the patches for the CVE IDs listed above were applied, and not the entire latest OpenSSL library." Apple has also posted all six updates on the Web...
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