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Evoqe today released solidThinking Design 6.0 and solidThinking Vantage 6.0 for Mac OS X, its Class A modeling packages. solidThinking Design offers parametric surface modeling along with state-of-the-art photorealistic visualization, while solidThinking Vantage 6.0, a high-end CAID solution for industrial designers with engineering needs, also adds exclusive features such as Make Manifold, Shelling, Solid Offset, Associative Dimensioning, Plotting, advanced control of Tangency and Curvature Continuity (G2), and much more. Version 6 adds G3 continuity fillets, new Round and Join tools, Sketch rendering, keyframe animation as well as support for both solid and surface modeling, interactive constuction history, full animation support, a new Simple Sky light shader, and increased rendering speed. (Pricing not available.)
Several MacNN readers report that orders for their Power Mac G5 Dual-2.5GHz systems have been delayed. Delays reportedly stretch back to those who ordered their systems on the day they were announced. "The demand for this item has been incredible. We are shipping them as quickly as possible, but cannot meet the ship date we previously estimated for you. We now expect to ship your Power Mac on or before August 20th," the note from Apple reads. Orders had originally been slated to ship by the end of the July. Apple also tells customers in the email to "please rest assured that we fulfill all orders in the order they are received."
A MacNN reader offers additional details on Apple's Kansas City retail store that is currently in the works. "The Apple Store on the Country Club Plaza has had its location revealed. It is on the East side of the of Broadway just south of 47th Street. Unfortunately, it looks to be a rather small store, occupying just the first floor (I may be wrong here, but the peek I got inside didn't reveal any stairways, etc.) At any rate, the plywood construction front has a nice big Apple logo on it now."
Roxio has released Toast 6 Titanium 6.07 (17.4MB), which adds Double-Layer (DL) DVD support to the CD/DVD authoring software, as well as simplified creation of DVDs from pre-existing VIDEO_TS folders, MIDI Karaoke (KAR) support, improved video encoding, several bug fixes, and an updated version of Deja Vu backup utility for Panther compatibility.
Dock-It 2.2 ($10) is a multifunctional launcher and Finder enhancer for Mac OS X. Under version 2.2, Applet listing is now alphabetized, all references to Monitor hav been changed to Display, editor view features a monitor selector, and bugs have been fixed. [Download - 2.0MB] Snakey Math 2.0 ($10) is an educational game combining arithmetic practice with classic arcade action for one to four players. Version 2.0 for Mac Classic adds new power-ups and electric switches, background photos and music, smoother transitions, and improved snake behavior. [Download - 5.5MB] iTunes Publisher 4.1 is a utility used to print out iTunes Playlists. "iTunes' Export Song List creates a list that's too detailed and confusing for normal use." iTunes Publisher is now free software licensed under the GNU GPL, users now have the option to select an HTML export's background and text color, and the help system is improved. [Download - 80KB] upCast 5.2 enables you to use Microsoft Word as an authoring application for XML documents. The update adds a new WordLink feature, new Post-processing filter, Saxon 8 support, bug fixes, and more. [Download - 7.4MB] HimmelBar is a small 'faceless' application that provides an icon in the menu bar to quickly access your installed applications by scanning standard locations such as local, user, network and developer applications. Version 1.4 has a more clever "Quit Others" function and allows you to exclude applications from this operation. You can also choose to automatically or manually add newly discovered applications. [Download - 184KB] Firewall Builder 2.0 ($50) is multi-platform firewall configuration and management tool. The GUI in v2.0 has been rewritten from scratch using QT 3.x. The new interface is faster, and offers several new options, including auto-save. [Download - 18.1MB]
Aspyr today announced that the Mac version of SimCity 4 Rush Hour has hit beta status and is expected to ship September, 2004. The expansion pack for the popular sim title allows players to "take control of their city’s transportation with a wide variety of new options. They can create the elevated train networks of Chicago, the wide-avenues of New York, or the one-way streets of San Francisco. Players can develop a seamless mass-transit system including monorail, subway, or even a scenic ferry service that connects to a greater regional travel network." It requires SimCity4 and Mac OS X 10.2.3 or later. It is available for pre-order for $30.
RealNetworks, responding to a critical statement made by Apple earlier today, says it hopes consumers are given choice rather being limited by Apple and says the DMCA specifically allows the creation of Harmony-type software: "[We are] delighted by initial consumer and music industry support for Harmony. Compatibility, choice and quality are critically important to consumers and Harmony provides all of these to users of the iPod and over 70 other music devices including those from Creative, Rio, iRiver, and others. RealPlayer Music Store provides the highest sound quality of any download music service. That's why so many consumers have welcomed news of Harmony. Consumers, and not Apple, should be the ones choosing what music goes on their iPod."
IOGear’s USB 2.0 Peripheral Sharing Switch allows multiple users to share one USB device or group of USB devices through a USB Hub on a one-at-a-time basis. The USB 2.0 Peripheral Sharing switch can be assigned to a computer either manually or with hot keys. The USB Peripheral Sharing Switch is available in both a 4-to-1 USB2.0 Peripheral Sharing Switch and a 2-to-1 USB2.0 Peripheral Sharing Switch. (Pricing and availability not noted.)
Illustrator Killer Tips ($30) by Dave Cross provides "cover-to-cover" tips and tricks of the trade for Adobe Illustrator users [site not updated]. Dave Cross compiled tips for everyday Illustrator users who want to become more efficient, and occasional Illustrator users who need refresher tips. Dave Cross appears on Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator DVDs produced by KW Computer Training. Cross is also a member of the PhotoshopWorld Instructor Dream Team, teaches at the Mac Design Conference, and is Lead Instructor for the Adobe Photoshop Seminar Tour. Related: Over the course of the next 20 weeks, visitors to MacDesign Online have daily access to 101 Hot Photoshop CS Tips and new weekly Killer Tip Tutorials on Adobe Illustrator, Adobe InDesign, and Mac OS X.
Morning tech news: Time Warner next month will begin offering broadband connections at higher speeds--up to 6Mbps per second for downloads, and 512kbps upstream at prices ranging from $65 to $85 per month; a computer worm that disrupted some of the world's most popular sites, including Google, tapered off on Tuesday as computer users patched up their defenses; IBM said it had been selected to build a supercomputer for the U.S. Department of Defense that would be used by the military for war simulation, weather forecasting and other applications; parents in South Korea will now be able to track their children by using a device in a new mobile phone that has been designed for kids.
Canto today announced the launch of Cumulus Photo Suite ($50). It lets users manage RAW image files from a wide array of digital cameras. Cumulus Photo Suite comprises the Cumulus Digital Camera RAW Filter and features the IPTC Information Window. When cataloging RAW image files, the Cumulus Digital Camera RAW Filter reads and interprets metadata from these images. The RAW Filter can capture metadata from different RAW image formats defined by the nine leading camera manufacturers. Canto today also released Cumulus 6.0.3 an update to its DAM management solution that adds XMP read/write support to files (as well as IPTC).
Addonics Technologies today announced the Multi Function Recorder, a portable digital media appliance that can perform 25 different functions for a wide range of applications. The new Addonics MFR (Multi Function Recorder) with a DVD+/-R/RW is a standalone flash media backup system, DVD, digital photo and MP3 player as well as an external USB 2.0 DVD burner and flash memory reader/writer. The Addonics MFR DVD+/-R/RW can be used as a stand alone storage appliance to do following: direct back up of data from 10 different flash memory cards onto DVD or CD, connect to TV to use as a regular DVD player, and use as a stand alone MP3 player.
Apple today released an official statement on RealNetworks' Harmony software, which allows users to play its song files on the iPod. In a brief statement, Apple said that it was investigating possible criminal violations under the DMCA and other laws as well as threatening compatibility by updating the iPod firmware. "We are stunned that RealNetworks has adopted the tactics and ethics of a hacker to break into the iPod, and we are investigating the implications of their actions under the DMCA and other laws. We strongly caution Real and their customers that when we update our iPod software from time to time it is highly likely that Real's Harmony technology will cease to work with current and future iPods."
In Brief: Hitachi says it plans in the fourth quarter to debut a 6GB slim-type drive--the same size as the drive in the iPod mini, but 50% larger than the current 4GB drives available... Apple has begun shipping AirPort Express in the UK/Europe after an initial two-week delay... Apple says the 4G iPod ("Click Wheel") pauses playback when anything connected to the headphone jack (such as headphones or the remote) is removed and that pressing the 'Play' button will resume playback... LoadPod, the service that loads your CD collection into your iPod, is now offering local service in several Canadian cities, including Toronto, Montreal, Edmonton, and Calgary.
TIME magazine reports that the new 4G iPod, selected as the "Gadget of the Week", is a "modest hop forward and a complete overhaul," but says Apple is holding back on some on publicizing some of its new features: "But you should know that internally the new iPod is a ground-up reconstruction, and its really compelling applications — the ones that very well might get the goat of anyone unable or unwilling to upgrade — are still secret. All that Apple is saying is that there's more to this than what's being publicized." The article notes that new iPod sometimes delivers delivers more than its advertised 12-hour battery life, offers positive comments about the new click-wheel, and highlights the new multiple On-the-Go Playlists feature, but notes drawbacks in its shuffle features.
Mark/Space today began shipping The Missing Sync for Palm OS v4, the successor to PalmSource's HotSync Manager for Mac OS X. It offers support for PDAs and smartphones from companies including AlphaSmart, Garmin, palmOne, Samsung, Sony and Tapwave. The Missing Sync for Palm OS v4 delivers the basic functionality of HotSync Manager, offering data exchange between a Palm OS device and a Mac as well as network sync over Wi-Fi/AirPort, SyncMinder for reminders, and wireless internet connection sharing over Bluetooth. It is available via the Web for $40 with a CD-version expected in September for $50.
Apple will need to respond to RealNetworks' Harmony application "fairly quickly, as the other digital-music download stores will likely want to add the 'iPod Compatible' sticker to their sites and Real seems ready to license it," according CNN/Money, who notes that Apple may have to balance iTMS song sales with iPod sales: "To create Harmony, Real reverse-engineered Apple's proprietary AAC format, and created a way for Real's downloads to appear in AAC format when loaded onto an iPod. Industrious hackers have attempted such a feat but have been spooked by legal threats. Apple may yet decide to challenge Harmony in court, but it should carefully think through the consequences: Harmony may actually prove beneficial to Apple and the industry as a whole....The question the company now must answer is, Is it strategically more important to preserve its closed system, or is the iPod the future profit machine for the company? In the latter case, it should pump up sales numbers at any reasonable cost. It's quite a pickle."
Now AAPL Stock: 93.86 ( -0.16 )
Apple Music in Taiwan, now up to 113 countries
Apple Music has now added its 113th country, Taiwan, to its expanding list of areas where it offers its paid subscription service. The price in the country will start at NT$150 (about $4.50 US) for an individual subscription, and that now includes (as it does in the rest of the world) the formerly free-but-ad-supported iTunes Radio feature, which as in other countries will be customized somewhat to offer channels of locally-popular music styles. Apple Music is now available in 16 countries and regions -- including China, India, Russia, and Japan -- where Spotify has not yet arrived.
Invisible wall mount for iPad Pro, mini
Computing hardware mounting company Wall-Smart has announced the availability the new "invisible" wall mount, with models for the iPad Pro, iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 4 -- all with no bezel. The invisible mount includes ÂPower Over Ethernet to USB, which allows charging while in-wall, and is available for both drywall and solid surfaces such as solid wood panels or partition walls. Prices vary widely by iPad model, and required mounting hardware. http://bit.ly/1SE5jCO
Kingston buys IronKey secure USB tech
Kingston Digital today announced it has acquired the USB technology and assets of IronKey from Imation. In addition to Kingston's acquisition, encryption services leader DataLocker has purchased the IronKey Enterprise Management Services platform which provides centralized management to encrypted USB drives. Kingston and DataLocker claim that there will be no interruption in service provided, or available products as a result of the consolidations. http://bit.ly/1QQk9SZ
View-Master VR device in Apple Store
Apple has started to sell a Google Cardboard-style VR headset modeled on a classic Mattel toy. Initially launched early last year, the View-Master Virtual Reality Starter Pack for $30 is designed to use an iPhone as a display, with a Preview Reel and lever system mimicking the toy's switching between images to take users between different VR apps and scenes. http://bit.ly/1RhJW8y
Apple brings iTunes Movie Trailers app to Canada
After five years, Apple has expanded its iTunes Movie Trailers app for iOS to Canada. As of Saturday, the free app allows movie buffs to see HD movie trailers for new studio and independent features, and explore some other movie-related extras such as photos, behind-the-scenes footage, or clips from upcoming films. Users can save trailers for quick access, read reviews from RottenTomatoes.com within the app, use AirPlay to send them to an Apple TV, share trailers, and peruse the top movie charts. http://apple.co/1UUKtwr
Apple expands CloudKit API, provides web interface
On Friday, Apple notified developers that it was expanding a feature of CloudKit to allow for server-to-server web service requests. "In addition to providing a web interface for users to access the same data as your app, you can now easily read and write to the CloudKit public database from a server-side process or script with a server-to-server key," Apple said in its announcement. Previously, interaction with the CloudKit public database was limited to apps and web only. http://apple.co/20h1RwP
Remote S for Tesla Apple Watch app drives car out
Developer Allen Wong has created the Remote S for Tesla app, which can be used to remotely activate the Model S electric car via an Apple Watch, and drive it a short distance. Aside from providing data about the car and some basic function controls, the unofficial app uses the manufacturer's Summon command to allow the car to turn on, exit the garage, and park near to the user's location. The app is available to purchase from the App Store for $10. http://apple.co/1PprF4t