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MacDevCenter has posted a tutorial on How to Set Up Encrypted Mail on Mac OS X, noting that Apple recently added support for S/MIME in the latest Mail version, the one that ships with Panther. The tutorial guides a user through obtaining a certificate, storing the certificate securely in Mac OS X's Keychain (using Mozilla), and both signing new message and receiving signed messages.
Evening tech news: A new $22 million system to allow soldiers and other Americans overseas to vote via the Internet is inherently insecure and should be abandoned; The RIAA has filed more than 500 new lawsuits against computer users it claims illegally distributed songs over the Internet; legal downloads are revolutionizing the way we listen to music, but will the companies at the forefront of this technology ever turn a profit?; and Microsoft settled a patent infringement suit based on music download services in Europe--which may also affect Apple's iTMS for Europe.
Apple has gained local traction in the defense sector, according to Computerworld: The Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO) is showcasing an Xserve cluster to model battle scenarios based on the games of chess and checkers. Dubbed Checkmate, the DSTO supercomputer-on-a-budget consists of a 16-node cluster of 1.33MHz G4 dual-processor Xserve systems (32 processors in total), each with 1GB of RAM. The cluster operates on OS X 10.2.4 Jaguar, with each Xserve running multiple instances of Java-based simulation and analysis code to crunch through terabytes of what research mathematician Greg Calbert calls 'second order' battle scenarios, or factors."
Apple has posted two more exclusive offers for members of its .Mac service. Users can save $30 on Apple's Keynote presentation software (regularly $99) and also receive seven free Keynote themes created by third-party designers. The offers are good through March 17, 2004.
The freeware KisMAC 0.08a allows users to effortless find wireless networks in your area by putting your AirPort/wireless card into its monitor mode. The latest update adds 802.11g support for Atheros-based Cardbus/PCI cards and only supports Mac OS X 10.3. [3.6MB] FrameSeer 1.3 is a $50 network packet capture application for Mac OS X that can capture traffic on your Ethernet, AirPort, PPPoE (eg aDSL or cable-modem), PPP (eg dial-up modem) and loopback interfaces. I can capture, decode and analyzeas well as display a graph of network traffic on multiple interfaces. [1.0MB] Kebawe's AutoCat 3.0.8 is an update to its $15 disk cataloging utility for Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X. It can track MP3s, videos, pictures, any kind of files on your CDs, or any kind of disks, by using aliases. Version 3.0.8 fixes the -50 error (volume couldn't be put away) on Mac OS X 10.3 Panther. [369KB] ThemePark 1.2.2 can create themes that modify the way Mac OS X looks as well as to change the appearance of individual applications. Vrsion 1.2.2 adds support for etched text colors (in Safari), merging custom text colors, and other fixes and enhancements. [2.2MB] A Better Finder Rename 6.1 updates the Finder contextual menu plugin that can quickly rename multiple files based on advanced rules. It now allows files to be renamed based on names in a tab-delimited text file. The $20 shareware features both automatic and interactive modes and can sequentially name/number files. [2.5MB] StreamLogger 1.1 ($50) is a video logging tool for streamed QuickTime media, allowing the the creation of "markers" corresponding to specific time points in the QuickTime stream file. Markers include a thumbnail image from the movie, as well as user-defined comments for each one. [3.5MB] Box O' Rox Software has released IMGCarver 1.0, which is designed to help web prefessionals by automating the task of separating an image into smaller sections and creating a corresponding HTML table. The $15 shareware runs on Mac OS X 10.2 or later. [415KB]
Mike's Icon Design today released a new icon set for Mac OS X called "iPod Minis." This collection (designed by Mike Matas) of icons was created entirely from scratch in Adobe Photoshop in order to capture the "true shape and texture" of the new iPod mini at such a small size. "iPod Minis" is available for free.
Marketcircle and The New York Group have announced a new seminar called "Building Your Business With A Mac" to be touring the Apple Stores in the New York metropolitan area. Through sales seminars, product training, and other business to business events, the two companies have teamed up to "help customers increase sales and marketing productivity by effectively using DayLite and other software packages." The next seminars will be held at the Apple Store in Tice's Corner at 9:00 a.m. and at noon on Tuesday January 27th, 2004.
Photo/Graphic Edges 6.0 is a suite of 14 photographic effects that allow anyone, regardless of experience, to give images a unique, "artistic look." It allows users to give otherwise plain images "shape and dimension." This new version of Photo/Graphic Edges includes dozens of new features and effects, including: SmartLayers, Visual Layer Presets, Brush Effects, and Unlimited Undo. Pricing starts at $180 for the suite.
Aspyr has released a demo of Wakeboarding Unleashed: "Hang on for your life! 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. This demo features one level, but in the full version you can catch mind-blowing air in 9 exotic locations around the world-from Lake Powell to Hong Kong Harbor." The full version is available for $30 and requires Mac OS X 10.2.6 or later.
MacGIMP let us know that its GIMP-2.0pre packages have been built for Fink and and that GIMP-2.0pre2 has been added to Darwinports. The freely distributed GIMP offers photo retouching, image composition and image authoring. In addition, Mac OS X is now officially supported: "Archei LLC donated an iMac to a GIMP developer who added a POSIX shared memory implementation that is used on Darwin. Due to the above developments, lead developer Sven Neumann announced that today Mac OS X is a fully supported platform for GIMP-2.0." The MacGIMP project, which aims to provide the most recent builds in a standardized and packaged format, is offering MacGIMP 2.0pre2 for $20 (download) or $30 (on CD).
Intelli Innovations today released the IntelliScanner OCR Pen, an optical wand that reads both printed text and barcodes into any Mac application. The complete OCR Pen Kit includes the USB pen with user-customizable buttons for inserting custom characters and switching fields. Also included are desktop inventory software, the company's "Collection" multimedia tracking software, asset tag generation software, and drivers for entering text into programs such as FileMaker Pro and Microsoft Word. It is available now for $350 (and requires Mac OS X 10.2 or later).
ShapeShifter 1.1 updates Unsanity's unique tool that allows you to change the overall appearance of your Mac using 'themes'. Users can change the overall system appearance, preview themes without applying them, install different themes for different users, and use Jaguar themes in Panther. Version 1.1 adds support for the Battery, Clock, and Fast User Switching Menu Extras as well as iLife '04. Users can now theme Safari tabs and 'Favorite Bar' buttons, Finder/Desktop filename text colors, and navigation services. The $20 shareware runs on Mac OS X 10.2 or later.
MacNN is offering a limited edition of its MacNN Forum T-shirts with the 'Addicted to MacNN' moniker and MacNN logo in Royal Blue. They are available immediately (and in 5 sizes) from our new online store. MacNN is also soliciting new item and design ideas as well as suggestions for an updated design/logo. Please send all comments to design [at] macnn.com.
FileMaker announced today that it will showcase a range of software solutions for K-12 education at its exhibit at the Florida Education Technology Conference (FETC), which opens tomorrow in the Orlando County Convention Center. In addition, educators can register to win free copies of FileMaker Pro 6 at the company's exhibit (Booth 1201) each day during the show. "Educators at FETC will see a variety of FileMaker solutions -- customized for administrators, teachers and students," including CourseWizard, Dragon Surveys, ESE Manager, Gradewrite, The Solutiion, and others.
Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and Carly Fiorina will be among the distinguished speakers at the second annual D: All Things Digital, which takes place June 6-8. The conference brings together "The Wall Street Journal's expertise with the leaders of the digital revolution in all sectors from entertainment to politics, from business to sports. Their goal: Frank, unfettered, unscripted explorations of the most pressing issues in the digital arena, in one-on-one interviews conducted live in front of you and your fellow attendees. It's a live version of the world's best business newspaper."
MOTU last week demonstrated a new version of its CueMix Console Software, which is including with its FireWire and PCI-424 audio interfaces. CueMix allows users to users to operate their studio without a dedicated external mixer, thanks to on-board DSP mixing features. MOTU showed a new version that includes new talk-back and listen-back features: "By setting up the appropriate connections in their studio, a user can click the talk-back button to dim monitor outputs and/or headphone outputs while conversing through a designated talk-back mic with musicians in a separate room or booth."
Peninsula Group is now shipping Barcode X, which provides the ability to create Industry standard highly accurate Barcode images for inclusion in artwork. The latest update has support for the EAN 14 Barcode Type; 'drop and check' which allows an eps barcode to be dropped onto Barcode to instantly view its settings (either to remake or to check). It also features support for type tracking to allow accurate reproduction of the type from a previously made barcode. It is available in three versions: UPCa Barcode Type ($63); Two Barcode Types ($178), and a software Bundle with barcode reader for $286 or $585 (all barcodes).
Apple exceeded average market growth in Europe last quarter with an overall growth rate of 25 percent in the UK (10 per cent growth in its desktop sales and a 50 per cent growth in notebook sales), according Macworld UK: "Europe's PC market grew 19.7 per cent year-on-year during 2003's final quarter with business driven by ever-increasing notebook demand and the emergence of the long-awaited corporate refresh cycle that has been absent for four years, analysts firm IDC revealed. Apple exceeded the curve, shipping over 51,000 Macs in the last three months of 2003 in the UK; a 25 per cent growth in sales year-on-year, IDC told Macworld."
IMSI today announced it will acquire Aladdin Systems for cash, stock and a convertible note with a combined value of approximately $8 million dollars and an earn-out that could result in an additional $2 million in payments during the next three years. Aladdin develops and publishes award-winning utility software solutions that solve problems and protect users in the areas of information access, removal, recovery, security and distribution of information and data, including StuffIt, Internet Cleanup, Spring Cleaning, and SpamCatcher, Ten for X utility line.
IBM Developerworks has posted an interesting article titled Linux on Mac, which evaluates four distributions of Linux for PowerPC machines: Debian, Knoppix, Yellow Dog, and Mandrake: "I found two of the distributions to be well polished and easy to use, right on par with the best x86 Linux distributions; the other two I would have to describe as "not ready yet." A few other distributions exist as well -- and more will certainly be created over time. I was not aiming to provide a thorough comparison of every distribution readers might choose to use, but simply to get a sense of the 'state of the art'..."
Wired News has an in-depth look at Jonathan Caouette's Sundance film entry, which was edited entirely using iMovie: "Tarnation may be the first feature-length film edited entirely on iMovie, and it cost $218.32 in videotape and materials. Despite its low budget, the film has already earned a high profile. Both John Cameron Mitchell, the actor and director of Hedwig and the Angry Inch, and independent film maverick Gus Van Sant have signed on as executive producers."
RsyncX 1.7d is an implementation of rsync with HFS+ support and configuration through a command line (Terminal) or graphical user interface. The latest version fixes bugs and adds the latest RsyncX Package Tools. [Download - 1.0MB] Photo to Movie 2.7 ($50) can turn a collection of digital photos into "stunning QuickTime movies" by gently zooming and panning across the photos, blending them together. Version 2.7 adds Soundtrack support, support for QuickTime VR movies, and the ability to flip and rotate source photos. [Download - 2.0MB] Mail Courier 1.1 for Mac OS X will synchronize emails between Entourage for and Palm Mail. Mail Courier now supports Palm Tungsten T, Sony NZ90, and all other Palm OS 5.0 devices. It costs $25. [Download - form] NotifyMail is a $20 utillity that "sits patiently" until the mail servers lets it know that new email has arrived. Once this happens, NotifyMail can tell the default email client to check for mail, play a sound, or run an application. [Download - 393KB] HAlarmX 1.5 ($20) is an alarm monitor for TCP/IP, disk and system issues. Users can add multiple alarms with mail alerts, scheduling options and commands to execute when the alarm activates. Version 1.5 adds support for Mac OS X 10.3 "Panther." [Download - 1.6MB] Redcort Software today released version 4.9.3 of its Virtual TimeClock Pro ($180) time and attendance software. This free maintenance release fixes a leap year bug that "made manual date entries troublesome" during this leap year. [Download - OS X, Classic] MaxBulk†Mailer 3.1 allows†users to design and†send professional looking emails to customers. Version 3.1 contains a number of important bug fixes. [Download - OS X, Classic] Melonsoft has announced the release of PianistEnvy 1.6.5, a small update to its $7 QuickTime virtual music instrument interface. In the latest version, the onscreen piano keyboard looks and behaves much more closely to a true piano. [Download - OS X, Classic] Mactracker 2.1 provides detailed information on every Apple, Motorola, PowerComputing, and UMAX Mac OS computer ever made, as well as details on devices created by Apple. The latest version details Apple's iPod Mini, new keyboard and mouse, and other new hardware. [Download - OS X, Classic] Xupport 2.0b8 is an update to the utility for providing an interface to several unix commands to optimize and secure your Mac. Version 2.0 beta 8 introduces orthographic corrections, additional dialogs and information, optimizations, and bug fixes. [Download - 675KB]
Now AAPL Stock: 93.23 ( -1.04 )
Weber buys iDevices' iGrill, Kitchen Thermometer
Cooking gear manufacturer Weber is purchasing iOS accessory manufacturer iDevices iGrill and Kitchen Thermometer lines. As part of the purchase, Weber is working in parallel with iDevices to roll out a new version of the products, and associated apps, this spring. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. CEO of iDevices Chris Allen said that the transition will allow the company to "focus even more heavily on becoming a leader in the home automation market." http://bit.ly/1PFk3uZ
Vevo music video app launched for Apple TV
Vevo today announced its new native tvOS app for the fourth generation Apple TV. The new app allows users Siri Remote navigation for discovery of top videos by genre, or to search for individual artists and videos. Playlists generated on another device sync between all the iterations of the app. http://apple.co/1PFhxEU
HydraDock team unveils USB 3.1 Type C Roadie
KickShark, the team that brought the HydraDock desktop USB-C dock to market, has launched a Kickstarter project for The Roadie -- a USB 3.1 Type C standard-compliant pocket hub for the 12 inch Apple MacBook and other compatible devices. The Roadie occupies the same footprint on a desk as a credit card, with a short USB-C male cable on one end for connecting to a 12 inch MacBook, and a female USB-C port on the other end for plugging in a MacBook power adapter. One side has an RJ45 jack for gigabit Ethernet, and an HDCP-compliant HDMI jack that handles up to 4K displays. KickShark promises shipment of all products within four weeks of campaign completion. The "early bird" offer for the hub is a $69 commitment, with a $79 commitment for a Roadie after 500 backers have pledged. http://kck.st/1o6knw5
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