Apple today noted that is recent QuickTime 6.5.1 update resolves "CAN-2004-0431 where playing a malformed .mov (movie) file could cause QuickTime to terminate." eEye Digital Security said they reported the flaw back in February, according to CNET News.com: "Apple is downplaying the seriousness of the flaw in its advisory. A movie file could be created, the firm maintained, that would cause malicious code to execute when the user opened the file...Since movie files are not generally thought to carry code, the flaw could be used to disguise a virus or Trojan horse program and lure unsuspecting Mac users into running the program." The report notes that Apple didn't issue a security advisory until eEye discovered that Apple had patched the security flaw and asked Apple to do so.
Adium X 0.53 updates the customizable and extensible AOL instant messaging client: "It features an all new, customizable message display, custom link titles, two new protocols (Yahoo! Japan and Novell GroupWise) and a ridiculously long list of improvements and fixes." [4.3MB] oXygen XML Editor 4.0 improves usability and adds a full featured XSLT debugger in the standalone version. Other features include several important enhancements to debugging, Emacs-like shortcuts, more font options, improved search/replace, new plugins, and outliner improvements. It is available for $75 (23% off) until the 15th of May. [14MB] Hogwasher 4 ($50) is a new version of Asar's Usenet Newsreader and Email client for the Mac. It offers multi-account article assembly, an optional multi-pane display, a completely rewritten database engine for improved stability and performance, improved online documentation, more powerful filtering, built-in spell-checking, and other features. Upgrades are $25. [4.3MB] Cheetah3D 1.5 ($60) now supports ngons (polygons with n edges) throughout the entire app from the polygon objects over the polygon tools too the file loaders and exporters. It also features "dramatically improved polygon tools." The 3D modeller and renderer for Mac OS X offers many tools from simple polygon editing over advanced subdivision modelling to boolean operations and Bezier splines. [6.9MB] FTPDroplet II v2.1 ($15) brings a more detailed interface with better progress indicators and also is now available in French, Spanish, Chinese (Traditional and Simplified), and German. The drag & drop application quickly uploads files to specific destination; it runs on Mac OS X 10.2 or later. [1.6MB] StarCraft/Broodwar 1.11 corrects a handful of small issues with the popular real-time strategy game, while Nanosaur 2 1.0.5 brings a Dutch localization as well as improved localization and manuals for all other languages to the $25 action game. Mail Toolbox v1.1 ($21) adds SSL supported, an improved interface, message forwarding, printing, speed improvements, bug fixes, and both French and Spanish localization. The application helps manage email accounts by providing a client to browse mailboxes, delete spam, etc. It supports POP3, APOP, IMAP, and SMTP protocols. [2.9MB] .com Solutions Inc. has updated its FileMaker 7 AppleScript Reference with a new FileMaker 7 version of the file (16K download file), in addition to the PDF version. The guide provides a side by side quick reference for commonly used FileMaker 6 and FileMaker 7 AppleScript code examples. Each code example is stored within a FileMaker 7 database field for easy copying to the MacOS X Script Editor.
Topics of discussion on the MacNN forums today include: The maximum hard drive size for a Power Mac G4; protective sleeves for PowerBook G4s; recent changes made by Apple to its iBook Repair Program; replacing a failing flat-panel iMac's hard drive; Apple CEO Steve Jobs' position on video features in future iPods; the merits of a 12" iBook as a desktop replacement.
Apple has a possible fix for users experiencing problems using the iPod Updater 2004-04-28, requiring users to delete the "iPodDriver.kext" driver file using the Terminal and reinstall iTunes. "iPod's disk icon appears in the Finder, but it does not appear in the iTunes Source list or in the iPod Updater. To resolve this issue, you'll need to delete one file and reinstall iTunes. Follow each of the steps below. (1) Open Terminal (/Applications/Utilities). (2) Type: sudo rm -R /System/Library/Extensions/iPodDriver.kext (3) Press Return. (4) Enter the administrator account password when prompted (5) Quit Terminal. [Restart, redownload iTunes, Reinstall iTunes]."
Wired News talks about how Windows XP users are mimicking Mac OS X: "although the machine is running Windows XP, the interface is almost indistinguishable from an OS X machine. Notice the dock, desktop background, menus, system font and icons for applications and folders. Even the keyboard shortcuts belong to the Mac OS X. The system belongs to Kurt871, who won the latest monthly screenshot contest at AquaXP, a site devoted to turning XP boxes into faux Macs. AquaXP has 9,000 members. The site is named after Apple Computer's distinctive Aqua Mac OS X interface. A similar site, Aqua-Soft.org, has 16,000 members. And there are a dozen or more sites like them..."
FJZone.org has published a free iTunes 4.5 guide (119KB PDF) that provides answers and suggestions for 15 problems users have reported with iTunes 4.5, QuickTime, and updating their iPod.
Forbes' Arik Hesseldahl offers some suggestions for improving iTunes in his Ten O'Clock Tech column today. Hesseldahl would like to see Apple include more than just cover art with the music he buys from the iTunes Music Store, something more akin to liner notes that have traditionally accompanied albums, and he feels Apple should use an album's original release date and not its re-issue date in the music's information tags. Also, rather than the weekly new music emails that Apple sends out to customers, Hesseldahl suggests Apple create custom emails based on a customer's prior purchases. "Overall, iTunes is off to a great start, and as yet the competition isn't even close. But the online music game is just getting started," he concludes.
American Power Conversion, best known for it USP products, recently announced three ergonomic stands for laptops. Deigned to improve comfort and posture with varying levels of adjustability for a laptop's screen, each stand elevates the laptop and improves cooling and can be rotated 360-degrees. One stand features a minimal 5-degree tilt, while another features a 4-port USB 2.0 hub. Prices range from $20-$100.
Nova Media today released Mobile High Speed 3G, the first Mac OS X software to support online connections using the UMTS protocol. Currently available in Europe, UTMS supports download/upload speeds of up to 384/64kbps. The software features support for Vodafone's Mobile Connect Card 3G/GPRS datacard for UMTS connections on all Vodafone UMTS networks, a well as Novatel Merlin UMTS card and Siemens U15, and Motorola A385, Samsung SGH-Z100, SGH-Z105 mobile phones. The 3G edition of the software also supports 200 network settings for most mobile network carriers worldwide and supports more than 87 phones and PC Card modems. Mobile High Speed 3G sells for €75 (US$91.50).
Brokerage house Piper Jaffray has initiated coverage on Apple with a "market perform" (hold) rating, notes CBS Marketwatch. No further notes regarding the coverage were released.
Robert X. Cringely, one of Apple's first employees back in 1977 and author of Accidental Empires, a history of the personal computer industry, says Apple founder and CEO Steve Jobs "is proud of being an a**hole." The remark came in an interview published in today's Sydney Morning Herald. It's unclear whether Cringely was referring to Jobs 25 years ago, today, or both. He also explains that Microsoft founder Bill Gates "doesn't mind his actions being described but he doesn't like people to characterize him (say why he does what he does)." Cringely also says that innovation has been stunted since the development of the World Wide Web and that growth will remain confined largely to processors and system software, since that's where the money is.
CPC has introduced MacCaption 2.0, a new version of its closed captioning software that can now automatically break and accurately time closed captions at the click of button. MacCaption (with subtitle option) subtitles a multitude of video formats without the need for a hardware character generator; it can import text, automatically format the text into basic captions, and can perform (manual) caption formatting, positioning and timing. Other features include multi-language capability, border around characters, translucent backgrounds, proportionally spaced fonts, kerning, and line spacing. Pricing starts at $4,000.
Jiiva today announced SuperScrubber 1.5, an update to its powerful disk erasing solution. Version 1.5 now includes three distinct editions: SuperScrubber G3, SuperScrubber G4, and SuperScrubber G5. The separation offers support for legacy machines such as beige PowerMac G3s. Version 1.5 also includes improved support for Unix file systems, enhanced support for USB and FireWire hubs, as well as an updated list of built-in configurations. Each edition is $30, while the three bundled editions are $50. A limited non-functional demo is available.
Creo has released Six Degrees 2.0, the latest version of its $100 desktop search engine designed to quickly find e-mail messages, file attachments, and people. Version 2.0 boasts a new, browser-based user interface that delivers ranked search results. The new full text and advanced search features aid users in quickly finding desired information. It also includes a powerful dynamic Projects feature, in addition to the new search functions, to-do lists, and QuickFilters that capture information in categories.
Now AAPL Stock: 97.9 ( + 1.47 )
Comixology fires up $6 all-you-can-read service
Amazon-owned Comixology has launched an all-you-can-read comic subscription service. After a 30-day free trial, for $6 a month, subscribers can draw from a large selection of the Comixology library, minus Marvel and DC comics. For now, the service is US-only. http://bit.ly/1WMAOft
QuarkXPress 2016 now shipping
Quark is now shipping QuarkXPress 2016, the newest version of Quark's graphic design and desktop publishing software that now features near-WYSIWYG fixe HTML5 publishing as well as improved operability with InDesign and Illustrator and support for multi-Color Gradient Blends, OpenType Stylistic Sets, a Color Picker (Eyedropper tool), Touchpads for Pinch and Zoom (Mac only) and more. Users on any previous version of QuarkXPress (versions 3-10) can upgrade to version 2016 for $350, while QuarkXPress 2015 users can upgrade to 2016 for $180; new licenses are available for $850 (education licenses are available for $90). http://bit.ly/1OL23Pu
Kanex debuts GoPower USB-C for MacBooks
Kanex today introduced its GoPower USB-C, a portable power solution designed to charge a USB-C MacBook on the go along with an iPhone or iPad simultaneously. Featuring 15,000 mAh of power--capable of charging an iPhone 6s seven times or the USB-C MacBook one full time--the GoPower USB-C Portable Battery features one 3A USB-C port and one 2.4A port for other devices, priority charging detection technology and a pass-thru charging to your devices when the battery is plugged into a power source. http://bit.ly/1TKaf8z
i.am+ EPs earphones are Apple Store exclusive
Musician turned consumer electronics entrepreneur Will.i.am has launched a new pair of Bluetooth wireless earphones, dubbed the i.am+ EPs. The new earphones are an Apple Store exclusive, and feature large 14mm drivers and aptX support for high-quality wireless streaming. The i.am+ EPs support A2DP controls, have a 30-foot range and can last up to six hours on a charge. The design is said to be inspired by the "iconic shape of vinyl records," and are made from spun metal and paired with a woven fabric cord. When not in use, the EPs magnetically click into place around the neck. The iam+ EPs are available now at select Apple Store and Apple.com for $230, are available in gold-on-black or black-on-black. http://bit.ly/1OKVlt2
Ultimate Ears debuts UE Roll 2 speaker
On Tuesday, audio accessory maker Ultimate Ears unveiled a new version of the UE Roll Bluetooth speaker. The new UE Roll 2, which sells for $100, looks identical to the previous version, but gets about 15 percent louder. In addition, the unit now supports a Bluetooth source signal up to 100 feet away, an improvement on the original's 65-foot limit. While both the old and new versions of the UE Roll offer an IPX7 waterproof rating, the company now includes a blow-up "floaty" with the speaker to avoid the risk of prolonged exposure. The new unit will begin general shipping next month. http://bit.ly/1TJWE0Z
Philips launches Hue White Ambiance bulbs
Philips latest HomeKit-compatible Hue light bulbs have hit the market. The new Hue White Ambiance bulbs are designed to allow users to control their color temperature to enhance either focus, or create a more relaxing tone. Combined with the latest update to the Philips Hue app, the new bulbs can be set according to user "routines." The "wake-up" mode gently turns up the brightness of the bulb, while conversely, the "go to sleep" mode gradually reduces the color temperature and brightness. The Philips Hue White Ambiance starter kit retails for $130, while single bulbs sell for $30. http://bit.ly/1TJT3Qn
Pluggable Technologies three-display USB-C dock
Peripheral company Plugable Technologies today launched the industry's first wave of USB-C docking stations with both Power Delivery and DisplayPort Alternate Mode support. The Plugable UD-CA1 Docking Station integrates support for both of these new capabilities, along with the full set of standard USB docking features like wired network, audio, and extra USB ports. Model UD-ULTCDL builds on this, adding support for three total displays using DisplayLink USB virtual graphics technology. The UD-CA1 retails for $129, with the UD-ULTCDL selling for $179, and available soon. http://bit.ly/1TrVVTJ