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Deals: Thursby, Servoy
Thursby Software Systems has announced special pricing for online purchases of DAVE and ADmitMac. The $50 savings is available through December 31, 2003. Single user licenses are $100 USD from Thursby's Web site. The online price for a single user license with an Annual Upgrade Agreement (AUA) is now $150.
Until December 31, 2003, MacNN readers can purchase Servoy Developer Edition for only $100. The list price is $650.
DVD Studio Pro 2.0.4
Apple has released DVD Studio Pro 2.0.4 via the Software Update utility in Mac OS X, after releasing version 2.0.3 on December 12th. Apple says the update is recommended for all users; it adds support for Cropped D-1 and 1/2 D-1 MPEG-2 video resolutions in addition to a number of enhancements and improved overall stability. Additionally, the update changes the behavior of the dual-layer break point to force a pause during playback of DVD-9 projects while the DVD player switches to the second layer.
ilesa Software's SpamSlam v2.1 for updates its email tool that blocks all unwanted spam from internet email accounts. It now includes AccuFilter, "which analyzes the content of incoming messages to determine if the message is spam. Combined with an original challenge/response system, SpamSlam is a fully-customizable spam solution. Users can opt to use one or both tools." Version 2.1 also updates the SMTP Proxy server to support SMTP servers with authentication and also updates the built-in SMTP client to support the PLAIN authentication mechanism. It is $25 and runs on Mac OS X 10.2 or later.
SilverNetworks today updated Spy 1.1.1, which allows remote users to see a snapshot of your screen, as well as information about your Mac. Users can look at a static image or a live, continously updated version of the remote desktop. Options are available for file format (JPEG or PNG) as well as size, scaale, and quality of the picture, built-in page layouts, logging, connection monitoring, viewing your "real external IP", and a built-in server. It is free and runs on Mac OS 7/8/9/X. [Classic, OSX]
Apps: Ittec, iClean ...
Ittec is a contextual menu plug-in that lists the contents of folders and Finder windows. It features control-free contextual menus in the Finder, dragging items from menus to other applications, hierarchical path menus, sending selected files to folders or applications, integration of Classic (MacOS 9) Desktop(s) with the Mac OS X Desktop, detailed file information display, moving items to the trash, and more. [Download - 506KB]
Serial Mail is a plug-in for Apple Mail to generate serial mailings from a template using data provided by an Address Book group. The program will process the message body of the selected template message and replace coded strings with their corresponding value from the Address Book for each recipient. [Download - 372KB]
Aladdin Systems has updated its iClean ($30) privacy protection software to version 6.0.1. This 6.0.1 update fixes Panther compatibility issues. iClean helps protect your privacy by covering your computer tracks. [Download - 2.2MB]
MultiMode 4.3.2 is an update to the application for transmitting and decoding several different modes of non-voice communication. The update includes bug fixes to DTMF and ICAO SELCAL modes. [Download - 1.1MB]
The Hebrew Spelling Service adds a Hebrew dictionary to Mac OS X's built-in spell checker. Version 1.1 is powered by version 0.7 of Hspell, which adds 11,796 words to the vocabulary. Additionally, the Guess list no longer contains duplicates, and the update partially addresses an issue in which one spelling service stops working. [Download - 352KB]
Midi Grasshopper 0.1 is an update to the $12 is a midi sequencing application. A user may create midi files and aiff files for burning on a CD for play back on any CD Player. Midi Grasshopper uses Apple's Audio Units for sound synthesis. [Download - 378KB]
MacWalker 1.0 is a free ScreenSaver for Mac OS X that shows three 3D PowerBook G4S "walking" in a three-dimensional space (and opening/closing the screen). [Download - 700KB]
Portrait 1.0 is a "virtual picture frame" for your desktop. To use it, just drag a picture from the Finder, Safari, or any other drag-and-drop enabled application and drop it inside Portrait's frame. Users can then set up the portion of the picture to frame, and even change the style of the frame. [Download - 753KB]
Ranchero Software has announced the release of a new version of NetNewsWire, its easy-to-use $40 RSS Web newsreader for Mac OS X. Version 1.0.7 adds support for favicons and feed URLs, boosts performance, and fixes several bugs. The full version includes a new widescreen view especially suited for laptops. [Download - 3.0MB]
Aspyr is now shipping Wakeboarding Unleashed featuring Shaun Murray: "Rip across a lake behind a screaming speedboat, tricking through dangerous terrain with only a sliver of wakeboard between you and the blistering water below. Catch mind-blowing air in 9 exotic locations around the world-from Lake Powell to Hong Kong Harbor." The $30 title is available for Mac OS X 10.2.6 or later and requires a G4/G5 Power Mac.
New \"Profiles of Success\"
Apple has published two new "Profiles of Success" under its Education & Research Web site. Dr. Drew Talley, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of South Florida spends much of his time in Baja California, Mexico. There, Talley's scientific explorations take him through mudflats, deserts, salt marshes, and tidal pools, and into temperatures that often top 110 degrees Fahrenheit. "I can't imagine any standard laptop being tougher than my iBook is. And in this environment, that's crucial," he says. Apple has also published a look at Dr. Srinidhi Varadarajan's quest to build a world-class supercomputer, which resulted in the creation of the Virginia Tech Power Mac G5 cluster.
LetterWorks (Pro) 1.5
Objectpark Development has released LetterWorks 1.5, its $30 application that "let the author focus on content while layout, formatting and default text are determined by a predefined stationery. In addition, these applications automate the process of filling in the receiver's address and set personalized greetings for lots of letters in one go." The update features many usability improvements and stability enhancements. LetterWorks is available in English, French, German and Italian. A Pro version with mail merge and fax merge functionality is $60.
DEVONtechnologies has released new versions of DEVONagent, its intelligent search agent and alternative browser, the freeform database DEVONthink and the super-fast find-file utility EasyFind. DEVONagent 1.2 ($35) features new XML-based plug-ins and is bundled with a couple of new plug-ins for a total of 35 plug-ins and five scanners. DEVONthink 1.7.4 ($35) now displays HTML pages using Apple's WebKit, the Safari engine and offers new contextual menu and toolbar commands. EasyFind 3.1 (free) can specify any folder for searching, uses localized folder names, comes with an updated Japanse localization and fixes a minor interface glitch. Demos of each are available. [DA, DT, EF]
CopyPaste 2.0 beta
Script Software has released a beta of CopyPaste 2.0b, an update to its unique utiity that brings several advanced features to the Mac clipboard, including multiple clipboards, text filters, and other options. Version 2.0 features a new spellchecker, a calculator which works within any application, encryption, new contextual menu items, paste special clipboard types, named clipboards, support for binding clipsets to an application, new text cleaning options, new navigation in documents, links in documents and many more features. A special $10 upgrade offer is available to registered users. The utility will be $30 when released.
Bare Bones t-shirt upgrade
Bare Bones Software today announced a free t-shirt upgrade to be held at Macworld Expo: "During exhibit hours on January 6-9th 2004, anyone who comes to the Bare Bones Software booth wearing any Bare Bones Software product or company t-shirt will receive a brand-new 'Crafting Fine Software' t-shirt, for free, while supply lasts. 'Bare Bones Software t-shirts are built to last, but as enthusiastic as our customers are about wearing them, they don't last forever.'"
Sibelius 3.1 updates the music notation software. It adds four new plugins (Color Pitches, Boomwhacker Note Colors, Harmonics Playback, Remove Overlapping Notes), 16 new instruments, a features to "Unregister" Sibelius to move an license to another CPU, editing performance improvements, scroll wheel support, and other enhancements. The free update is available via the Web or on CD-ROM (including both Windows and Mac versions) for free. Kontakt Player Silver for Mac is also now available for download as well as a new version of PhotoScore Lite.
Second Life v1.2 for Mac
Linden Lab has released version 1.2 of Second Life, an update to its online "virtual world" service that allows residents to "join a rapidly growing world in which they can play, build, or live, creating anything imaginable. Second Life residents can now buy their own virtual land at auction, using either real or in-world currency." Version 1.2 offers Mac compatibility for Mac OS X 10.3 Panther users using the Beta version for Mac. Other new options include the ability to join the service for $10 (with no reoccuring monthly fees), and an improved chat system, including easy-to-use gestures and emotes.
Derman Enterprises has released z, an update its utility that automatically sets up, sizes and arranges your Finder's folder windows into settings and configurations you define. FolderControl provides preference sets so you can easily use different preference configurations. Version 1.4 offers compatibility with Panther, an option to organize with/out toolbar/sidebar, and other enhancements. It is $25 and runs on Mac OS X 10.2 or later.
iPod, iBook quality issues
Girard Gibbs & De Bartolomeo LLP say it is "investigating a potential class action against Apple Computer, Inc. on behalf of iPod owners whose batteries have died or lost their ability to hold their charge." The attorneys are soliciting feedback from users who have experienced simliar problems. Meanwhile, another group of users is organizing a class action lawsuit over iBook quality, including repeated iBook logic board failures: "I think there is a major design flaw in the motherboards of the popular Apple iBook models. They keep failing. Over and over. Sometimes a single customer can have a motherboard fail (and subsequently replaced) up to three times."
User Conferences at MWSF
IDG World Expo today announced that the Users Conference at Macworld Expo has been reformatted into five separate conference tracks addressing the hottest technology on the Mac platform. The Users Conference will introduce Mac users of all backgrounds to a wide variety of tools and techniques, covering topics from iPods to Panther to desktop movie making. The Users Conference tracks include: Introducing Panther, "Cool Tools" (in-depth first look at new software and tutorials on key applications), "Creative Juice Factory" (creative luminaries), Digital Video, and Tech Tips. The Users Conference package costs $245 if purchased online before January 5.
Web Server 4D v4.0
MDG Computer Services today began shipping Web Server 4D v4.0, its a single application that includes a full featured web server, shopping carts, storefronts, credit authorization, virtual domains, and database publishing. Version 4.0 adds native Mac OS X support, simplified database navigation, a new SearchAgain tag, redundant data posting (to multiple servers), new XML/CSS 2.0 support, automatic Google submission, and support for LiveSync4D, which allows WS4D to mirror its database to another database. Pricing starts at $900, while upgrades are $300.
iBooks at Brooklyn school
Students at at Brooklyn's Packer school are field testing the wireless future, but had a few quality control problems with Apple's first generation all-white ("dual USB") iBooks, according to TIME: "[the] entire campus has been turned into a wireless Internet-access zone. Wherever they go, whatever they're doing--whatever they're supposed to be doing--Packer students are in constant high-bandwidth contact with the school, with one another and with the Internet at large....'I remember the first year--the issues were ridiculous... CD drives were popping out, the plugs were not working, there were battery problems. It wasn't software; it was really basic stuff.'"
Tempo SATA Cable Kit
Sonnet Technologies today announced the new Tempo Serial ATA Cable Kits, which are designed to be used with Sonnet's Tempo Serial ATA PCI Adapter cards, and will also work with virtually any SATA PCI controller card. Each cable kit includes everything you will need to add a second Serial ATA drive to your system, including a 22" Serial TA data cable with one right angle connector, a Y-power splitter (legacy 4-pin connectors), two serial ATA power cables, and 8 drive mounting screws. The Tempo Serial ATA Cable Kit (and Sonnet's Tempo Serial ATA card) is compatible with most Mac models and clones. It is available now for $30.
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