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Ulysses 1.0.3 (€100) updates the Mac OS X text editor aimed directly at creative writers. The update brings full compatibility with Panther, drag'n drop tab-resoring, selection feedback, shortcuts, time-based autosave function, and other enhancements. [1.4MB] Propaganda Productions has updated Déjà Vu 2.5.1, its backup utility for Mac OS X. The preference pane, updated for Panther, allows you to perform scheduled or manual backups of important folders, or even make a bootable clone of your entire system. The $15 works in the background--even when you're not logged in. [680KB] Simply Maze Crazy for Mac OS X is a new maze creation software: "just enter the information and the maze will be drawn before your eyes. Print out your creation and share it with others." It runs on Mac OS X 10.2 or later and can be registered for $10. [143KB] Rainer Brockerhoff's XRay 1.08 ($10) updates the File/Folder information utility that adds new batch mode in the Type, Creator & Extension panel and now supports drag & drop for setting options. [1.6MB] FODOR has optimized Flash AV Players 2.5, its €30 Flash application that broadcasts MP3, SWF (Audio and Video) and JPEG files by loading playlists in XML format. Version 2.5 offers a new mediaplayer skin type with all features in a single screen as well as a new set of extended shortcut keys. [419KB] The free SwitchIt 1.0 (SI) is a small replacement for the stock fast-user switching menuling that is packaged with Panther. WorkSets 1.3 (WS) is a free set of scripts for generating other scripts that can help manage work spaces on your Mac OS X 10.3 system. [SI, WS]
Apple UK's managing director Mark Rogers says that Apple is starting to see a slight recovery in the creative markets, which Macworld UK reports was confirmed by reports from the MacExpo showfloor, noting first-hand anecdotes in the advertising, photography, and graphic design markets: "We are finding it harder to fill positions now; it seems like there are more jobs than people, which has to be a good indication that things are getting better. The market is definitely more buoyant."
MacNN reader Matt Klimshuk reports that Apple has delayed the opening of its second retail store in Georgia to Dec 6: "According to a receptionist for North Point Mall, the location of the second Apple Store in the state of Georgia, the store opening has been pushed from Nov. 21 to Dec. 6. No reason was given. North Point Mall is located in Alpharetta, Georgia, just outside of Atlanta. The first Apple Store for Georgia is located in Lenox Square, an upscale mall in the Buckhead district of Atlanta." Meanwhile, Apple tomorrow at 10 am ET will be celebrating the Gand Re-opening of its Apple Store Tysons Corner in McLean, VA with an iSight Giveway, offering a free iSight video camera every hour for entire weekend. The remodeled store, closed since October 13th, features increased, updated retail space, a longer Genius Bar equipped with 40-inch LCD display panels, and expanded seating in its theater.
Wired News has published a story on the unique camaraderie between many iPod users. "During his regular evening walk, software executive Steve Crandall often nods a polite greeting to other iPod users he passes: He easily spots the distinctive white earbuds threaded from pocket to ears." Crandall also describes the sharing of music by iPod users, "We listened for about 30 seconds," Crandall said. "No words were exchanged. We nodded and walked off."
Analyst Ben Reitzes of UBS initiates coverage of Apple with a "neutral" rating. The target price for Apple's stock has been set to $23. Shares of Apple are currently trading at $20.38. According to UBS a research note published this morning, Apple Computer has "significantly strengthened its brand value" with several strategic initiatives in the recent past.
Apple says that an AppleWorks document is damaged when saving to a file server via AFP under recent Jaguar versions (Mac OS X 10.2.3 through Mac OS X 10.2.8), noting that the "That file appears to be damaged and cannot be opened." and that "the document's file size has increased to several megabytes or gigabytes instead of the normal size that it should be." Apple recommends saving the file locally and then copying to the server. Other KB articles describe how to use iTunes Smart Playlists to make regular music backups and that Apple Hardware Test may incorrectly report that the Bluetooth module is not present. Update: Apple also notes that Soundtrack and Compressor may not open if complete identity information is not present in the Address Book database.
Adobe today posted Acrobat Standard 6.01 and Acrobat Professional 6.01 updates for its software streamlines business document exchange and review of PDF documents. The update provides numerous enhancements to Acrobat 6.0 features, including Adobe PDF file creation, Acrobat commenting, and support for multimedia. It also improves compatibility with Mac OS X v.10.3 (Panther). [Std, OSX]
Readers of the MacNN forums today discuss a number of topics, including: a member's story satisfaction with their new Power Mac G5, after one month of use; thoughts on the new dual-1.8GHz Power Mac G5 option available from Apple; Apple's posting of benchmarks comparing its dual-1.8GHz G5 to a dual-3.2 GHz Intel Xeon machine, and a 2.2GHz Athlon-equipped PC; widespread discussion of difficulties with the new 15" aluminum PowerBook G4, including discussion of the infamous "white spot" problem; pictures of a member's new iBook G4, the box, and accessories; an ongoing list of bugs found in Mac OS X 10.3 "Panther" by users.
Afternoon tech news: The U.S. Congress could vote as early as this afternoon, would end more than six years of failed attempts to enact a federal law restricting unsolicited commercial e-mail; U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft said that law-enforcement agents had arrested 125 suspects in a crackdown on Internet crimes ranging from hacking to fraud to selling stolen goods; Computer users must be vigilant in fighting virus attacks, according to industry experts.
Insecure.ws Wednesday noted a was long-standing security vulnerability in Safari that enables "cookie theft" by Web sites. A malicious Web site with a name disguised to appear as that of another site could access cookies associated with the original site. "Apple has been warned and a security update should appear shortly," the site says. Apple's Mac OS X security update released earlier in the week included an update to Safari (version 1.1.1), but it does not address this particular issue.
Apple today announced an expansion of its AppleCare program to include an extended warranty option for iPods. Customers who pay $60 can now get an additional year of warranty, a total of two years of coverage from the purchase date. Apple has continually improved its iPod warranty, which was only 90 days when the digital music player first debuted.
Apple's .Mac is offering several new exclusives, including Apple Training "Going Digital with iMovie and iDVD" ("Learn how to shoot, edit, and share great movies with this latest installment in the iLife training series"), Free Sound Effects from Skywalker Sound (13 iMovie sound effects from the audio wizards at Academy Award-winning Skywalker Sound), and Free Soundtracks from Freeplay Music ("Thousands of professional-quality, royalty-free soundtracks from Freeplay in styles from Techno to Orchestral"). The latter two are available in a members-only directory on users' iDisks.
Bitcartel today updated RAW 1.1, its Internet audio recorder that saves audio to the MP4-AAC format. It now offers iCal support for scheduled recordings, improved AppleScript support, and bug fixes. Users can schedule recordings to record Real, Windows, QuickTime, Flash, MP3, M3U and EXTM3U streaming media and other media formats and also can simultaneously record multiple news webcasts, music videos, movie trailers and net radio. A free demo of the $20 utility is available. It requires Mac OS X 10.2 or later.
Architosh reports on new and updated CAD Programs announced at MacExpo in London, including Cadsoft Solutions' Concepts Unlimited, an innovative new CCAD application focused on conceptual and preliminary design AND Microspot's MacDraft PE, a limited professional version of MacDraft 5.5 Quartz Edition at a substantially reduced price (as well as a MacDraft update for Panther).
Earlier this week, Adobe announced it would discontinue support for LiveMotion, its tool for professional Web designers and developers to create dynamic, interactive content in both Flash (SWF) and QuickTime formats, according to a posting on its Website: "Effective November 15, 2003, Adobe will no longer distribute LiveMotion 2.0. Though Adobe has decided to concentrate its efforts in other areas, we want to thank our loyal LiveMotion customers for their support. Adobe will maintain person-to-person technical support for LiveMotion until March 31, 2004. In addition, complimentary technical support will be available until further notice via the Adobe Support Knowledgebase and User to User Forums on the Adobe Web site."
DVDRemaster 1.2 is a utility for Mac OS X to recompress large DVDs so that they fit on standard DVD5. This version offers a smarter user interface, greater compatibility with DVDs, improved speed and quality. The $40 utility includes M2VRequantizer (requantizes the video leaving the motion vectors unchanged) and M2VDownsizer (recompresses the video stream completely, including motion vectors). Both of these modules are based on libmpeg2 and mpeg2enc and released under the GNU General Public License (GPL).
Avondale Media and IDG World Expo today announced "iDay Digital Media Seminar" seminar will take place on Friday, January 9, 2004 as part of Macworld San Francisco in January: "iDay is a fun, informative, full-day seminar devoted to helping Mac users maximize their cameras, camcorders, and iPods, Attendees will learn digital photography and video techniques [and] will learn how to create a full range of digital media projects, from photo albums to DVD portfolio discs." Registration is $100 and are offered a 15 percent discount on all Macworld Conference packages.
Digidesign today posted Pro Tools 6.2.2, including ProTools TDM 6.22 and ProTools LE 6.2.2. Both offer support for the Power Mac G5 and Mac OS X 10.3.1 with Digi 002, Digi 002 Rack, and Mbox."The Pro Tools 6.2.2 release represents the second phase of Digidesign's multi-phase release plan for Power Mac G5 and Mac OS X 10.3.1 compatibility support. Phase II of the Power Mac G5 qualification phase-in enables both Pro Tools TDM and LE users to take advantage of the power of the new Power Mac G5 architecture, including increased counts for RTAS plug-ins, as well as Apple's latest Mac OS version. With Pro Tools|HD Accel systems on a Power Mac G5, you realize a significant increase in power and performance."
Aspyr today released an update for the Kelly Slater's Pro Surfer demo, which adds verification of available VRAM for anti-aliasing use and fixes a white texture problem under Panther (Mac OS 10.3, a crash on startup when multiple volumes are mounted, and detection of supported resolution/anti-aliasing combinations. Aspyr also released an update for Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2003 1.1, which allows it to correctly startup under Mac OS 9 with ATI cards, adds support for more Cinema Display resolutions, and offers better performance using ATI Radeon 8500 and 9000 cards under Jaguar.
Transmit 2.6.1 updates the $25 ftp client with several fixes for Mac OS X 10.3 Panther. The popular application supports SFTP, SSH, flexible list views, batch downloads, folder synchronization, favorites/bookmarks, a built-in text editor, and other advanced features. It requires Mac OS X 10.1 or later. [1.2MB] Apple has posted Mac OS X Server 10.3 Admin Tools, which contains administration software and tools that you can install on a computer other than your server. The tools, which require Mac OS X 10.3 installs: Server Admin, Workgroup Manager, Server Monitor, Network Image Utility, Server Assistant, and QuickTime Broadcaster. [83MB] Synk 4.2 is an update to the free native Cocoa file synchronization application that offers an informative preview window gives you full control over what will happen as well as intelligent synchronization. It now has interface improvements, improved drag-and-drop functionality, and a new "Synk Whenever" script in the Extras folder. [629KB] Mireth Technology has launched version 1.2 of MacMP3CD, its Mac OS X software that allows you to burn and to play MP3 and WMA CDs. This release adds support for unencrypted WMA burning and playback. The $20 shareware offers MP3/WMA CD creation and re-creation using burn lists and supports auto recognize, auto play, auto loop, auto eject, etc. [3.4MB] Kepmad Systems released ImageBuddy v2.9.0, its $18 photo printing program for Mac OS X, adding support for transparent image backgrounds on contact sheets and improved water mark placement. ImageBuddy also integrates with iPhoto using Drag & Drop to greatly expand your printing options. [Classic, OSX] Greppie 1.0b3 is a "wrapper application" for the UNIX command "grep" that can search any file on your hard disk for any text, or even search for those items that do not have the text you're searching for. The $14 shareware uses "regular expressions" to help users located text. [1.0MB]
Apple UK has posted photos from MacExpo in London: " With more than 20,000 attendees expected at Islington’s Business Design Centre over the next three days and a mass of iPod advertising lending the local streets a splash of colour, this stylish corner of North London has a distinctly Apple flavour this week. Since the show opened at 10.00am on Thursday November 20th, a steady stream of visitors have flowed through the doors, many of whom have come a long way to visit the UK’s largest Mac-dedicated event."
DEVONtechnologies has updated DEVONagent 1.1, its intelligent search agent and alternative browser. Verison 1.1 is optimized Mac OS X 10.3 ("Panther") and now supports "sets," which allow to switch with one click between various self-defined configurations. Other features include a built-in plug-in manager, exclusion of specific domains, three browser views (source, plain text, HTML), a simple progress indicator, RTF export, and an updated preferences panel. It is a free update to the $35 application. It requires Mac OS X 10.2 or later with Safari installed.
Nisus Software has released Nisus Writer Express 1.1, a major update to its word processing application that adds several new features, including a language palette (which allows you to mix and match languages more easily), show invisibles, integration with Nisus Thesaurus, ligature and kerning support, graphics resizing, and more. It is a free update to current owners. The $60 application requires Mac OS X 10.2.
Next Friday, November 28, Apple will be hosting all-day holiday shopping events at its retail stores designed "for the music lovers on your list." Apple says, "you’ll want to kick off your holiday shopping at the Apple Store ... you’ll find a scintillating array of gifts, plus, a few surprises in store for you." Additionally, Apple will be launching its Tokyo, Ginza Apple Store on Sunday, November 30th. "Here you will find four full floors dedicated to Apple's legendary products, including our full line of computers, the entire iPod family and the iSight web camera, as well as digital cameras and camcorders."
Now AAPL Stock: 94.28 ( -0.73 )
Filemaker provides free custom app guide
FileMaker announced today the release of the first in a three-part series of free how-to guides that will lead teams through the process of building a custom app using the FileMaker Platform. FileMaker's new how-to guides provide a step-by-step process that starts with a planning cycle covering goals, requirements, functionality and usability, and run all the way through identifying user scenarios, defining requirements, addressing integration, providing security, and deployment of the final product. http://bit.ly/1o08wQh
OCZ Trion 150 SSD shifts to 15nm TLC NAND
SSD manufacturer OCZ has updated its entry-level 2.5-inch Trion 100 SSD. The new Trion 150 has similar performance to the now replaced model, and now utilizes 15nm TLC NAND. Sequential read speeds top out at 550MB/S, with 4KB random write speeds running from 25K IOPS in the 120GB model, to 64K IOPS in the 960GB version of the drive. Endurance is limited to 30TB in the 120GB, and peaks at 240TB in the 960GB version. Retail prices vary between $46 for 120GB, to $270 for the 960GB version. http://bit.ly/1nVmlyL
Google off the hook in CAPTCHA labor suit
US District Jacqueline Scott Corley has dismissed a proposed class-action suit against Google, that alleged that Google secretly was given an economic gain without user knowledge. The suit alleged, correctly, that the second word in Google's CAPTCHA service was used as a crowd-sourced word identification for Google's book-scanning project. The judge ruled that the suit as filed had no facts to support a "reasonable consumer would expect to receive compensation" for the seconds it took to complete the form, and in addition, the free Gmail account provided more than offset any labor penalty incurred by the user. http://bit.ly/1o06Cir
Secure your Google accounts today
Google is offering 2GB of Google Drive storage today for free, if users check the security of their accounts. As part of Safer Internet Day 2016, the scheme will give the 2GB storage extension to anyone going through the Google Security Checkup, examining connected devices, permissions, and other security settings associated with their Google account.
Swift benchmarking suite goes open-source
Following the release of new betas for all its platforms, Apple on Monday also made a suite of 75 tools for benchmarking Swift-developed coding projects, including libraries for benchmarking functions, a utility for comparing the resulting metrics, and a driver for running them. The company says it is asking the community for help in developing additional benchmarks, as well as further "helper" libraries and overall code review for better stability and performance. Apple plans to include benchmark pull requests in Swift's new continuous integration system as well. http://bit.ly/1W8u0EU
Instagram now supporting multiple accounts
As reported earlier, Instagram is now rolling out support for multiple accounts (up to five) in version 7.1.5 of its iOS app. The feature has been one of the main attractions of third-party Instagram clients, but it is unclear if users must seek out an "add account" preference in the app; additionally, some users are reporting that the ability to add accounts has not yet been added. The company says notifications "depend on when you last logged in, and the number of devices that are logged into that account," suggesting not all notifications across accounts will appear when logged into a given one. http://bit.ly/1moh95p
Pictures of Galaxy S7, Edge leaked
New images have been leaked of Samsung's new Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge. The images of the Galaxy S7 are very similar to a draft leaked earlier this year, with a curved back reminiscent of the iPhone 3G with the normal Samsung camera hump in the upper center of the phone. The picture of the Galaxy S7 Edge as leaked is running a benchmark application showing modest improvements over the S6 line, if accurate. Both models are expected to be formally announced in a February 21 press event hosted by Samsung. http://bit.ly/20Gf07X