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Peachpit Press has released "iChat AV 2 for Mac OS X: Visual QuickStart Guide," a task-based guide that "gets you up and running fast as it covers the basics of setting up and working with iChat." Topics include creating your Buddy List, sending instant messages, initiating audio and video chats, configuring your FireWire Webcam, creating chat rooms, transferring files, and more. The $15 book features simple step-by-step instructions with hundreds of screen shots and tips.
Readers of the MacNN forums today discuss a number of topics, including: owners of the dual-2.0GHz Power Mac G5 discuss their level of satisfaction with the new machine; G5 owners discuss the recently-released Power Mac G5 firmware update, and its effects; a member's review of MacMice's "The Mouse;" general discussion of the recently-released Mac OS X 10.3.2 update; the optimal Halo settings for a Power Mac G5; the latest custom Mac OS X themes and GUI modifications.
Apple's first quarter 2004 financial results will be made public on Wednesday, January 14. An analysts' conference call will be held after the close of the U.S. markets. The conference call will be streamed live via QuickTime.
Weekend tech news: Columnist Bill Howard looks at the future of the television, and its continual entanglement with the PC; Microsoft and the New York attorney general are going after a sprawling e-mail spam ring, saying they hope to drive it into bankruptcy by exposing what they called its schemes of deception; in a surprise setback for the recording industry, a U.S. appeals court said Friday its methods for tracking down those who copy its music over the Internet are not authorized by law.
Sybex has announced the release of "Mastering Mac OS X, Third Edition" by Todd Stauffer and Kirk McElhearn. This nearly 900-page resource covers all features new to Mac OS X 10.3 and provides expert advice on running Classic applications, networking, system and data recovery, encryption, iApps, Web serving, Internet security. Also included is over 250 pages of advanced material, including extensive focus on troubleshooting and maintenance. Todd Stauffe is the author or co-author of over 30 books covering topics such as Web publishing, upgrading the Macintosh, and using the iMac. Kirk McElhearn is a freelance writer, journalist, translator and contributor to TidBITs.
IBM is said to be ready to deliver a new version of its PowerPC processor to Apple by the end of this year, in time for a revision to the flagship PowerMac G5 line, reports Forbes. "The main improvement to the PowerPC chip, known internally at IBM as the PowerPC 970fx, will be a reduction of the features on the chip itself, from sizes of 130 nanometers to 90 nanometers." Apple CEO Steve Jobs has gone on record saying that the G5 computer will contain PowerPC chips that run at 3 GHz by the summer of 2004. Systems with chips as fast as 2.6 GHz would be a logical mid-step come January, says industry analyst Peter Glaskowsky, "speeds of 2.4 to 2.6 GHz would be consistent with exactly where I would expect them to be right now."
Lunar Software has released EarthBrowser 2.0, a $30 application for Mac OS X that will display the the earth with live weather, clouds, earthquakes, webcams and more. EarthBrowser is an innovative earth simulation (and screen saver) that combines an easy to navigate 3D globe with real-time weather conditions, 7-day forecasts, and display of live earthquakes, webcams, volcanoes and current cloud formations. Version 2.0 includes a 16x increase in earth resolution, 4x more cloud resolution, over 17,000 cities with full 7 day forecasts, hundreds of webcams, tectonic plate boundaries, a world time clock, and more.
Apple's flagship retail store on North Michigan Avenue in Chicago is the highest-trafficked Apple retail store worldwide, averaging 30,000 visitors per week. The Chicago Sun-Times also notes that Apple is selling an iPod "every 10 minutes" and that Apple currently has flood of applicants for its retail positions: "'There's even a waiting list to work for Apple. "We have 17,000 applicants for 1,000 retail positions,' [Apple VP Ron] Johnson said. 'It's harder to get a job at an Apple store than it is to get admitted to Stanford University,' quips Johnson. There's a sign of the economic times."
Steve Jobs' Macworld Expo San Francisco keynote will be available via the Web in QuickTime 6: "Watch Apple CEO Steve Jobs deliver the Macworld Expo keynote address from Moscone Center in San Francisco. See the live webcast right here on January 6 at 9am PT exclusively in QuickTime and MPEG-4. It's an event you won't want to miss."
MacNN readers note that the redesigned MSNBC.com website initially did not provide support for Apple's Safari browser, however, the company has since enabled the browser: "it seems like they were going out of their way to block apple's browser, safari. i clicked on the year in pictures link off of their homepage and was sent to this page. This goes along with none of their videos--that used to work before the redesign--being accessible. with everyone moving to W3C standards for designing websites why are they intentionally blocking out Mac users." Update: Readers also note problems with some of the multimedia files on the website, including the Flash-based image albums and the WMP video files.
Nisus Software today released Nisus Writer Express 1.1.1, an update to its word processing application that contains "many fixes and improved reliability." A 30-day demo of the $60 application is available online. It runs on Mac OS X 10.2 or later. [280KB] Rating Bar is a $5 shareware System Preference that "puts the little 5 star rating widget of the currently playing song in you menu bar, useful for anyone who uses the rating system as a means of organizing songs into playlists." It requires Mac OS 10.2. [90KB] Black Cat Systems has released DX Toolbox 1.2, an update to its $20 radio propagation / conditions analysis and forecasting tool for amateur radio operators, and other radio enthusiasts. It adds calculations for MUF and LUF. [Classic, OSX] Silent Night 1.1 allows "users of PowerBook Rev. A to have the PowerBook's fan turn on at a higher temperature, much like it was before the 10.3.2 update. It includes an uninstaller if you would like to go back to the way it was after the 10.3.2 update." [2.5MB] FinKit 2.0 ($25) updates the flexible and intuitive financial calculator that lets you calculate annuities, bonds, dates, interest, loans, etc. It now includes an advanced interest on deposit calculator that calculates simple and compound interest using fixed or variable rates and six day count conventions. [1.5MB] Old Jewel Software's Painter's Picker 1.1 ($14) is an extension to Mac OS X's color picker panel that adds the ability to choose related colors, such as complementary colors, analogous colors, etc. It brings a new support for web designers with html-style color strings and web safe color navigation. [777KB] Koingo Software's Mac Pilot 1.1 ($10) provides a GUI for many common command line and hidden functions in Mac OS X. It can now "erase your tracks," by clearing the 'Recent Files' used in numerous applications, empty Safari/IE Cookies/History, etc. Version 1.1 can also turn on the hidden Exposť button. [780KB] If Then Software's DeepSix 1.2 is a utility to remove "AdobeFnt" files that can cause your Adobe apps to crash in 10.2 or 10.3. Also removes the font cache files that can cause other apps to crash, including Flash. It has been updated to not affect AdobeFnt.DB files. [218KB] The $5 shareware Hover Text 1.1 is a Carbon Event button-type control with a mouse rollover effect available for use in Carbon apps on Mac OS X 10.2 or newer. It is packaged in a Mach-O library that is statically linked to your application. [116KB]
Paradigma Software today released Valentina Technology Release 1.1.0, which includes a general update to all Valentina products and includes numerous fixes and SQL improvements for all supported development environments. For Mac OS deployment, version 1.1 introduces support for Mac OS X 10.3 Panther. Valentina C++ for Mac OS X also now supports development with Apple's Xcode development environment as well as Metrowerks CodeWarrior, Java, REALbasic, Macromedia Director, Purity's WebSiphon and XCMD compatible products, while Valentina SDKs are available for every major development IDE.
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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