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Many readers point out that Virginia Tech's Power Mac G5-based 'System X' super computer currently ranks 7th in a list of the world's 500 most powerful supercomputers. The supercomputer is composed of 1,100 dual 2.3GHz Apple Xserve G5 servers. Last year, the 20% slower 'System X' ranked 3rd overall, with the same number of 2.0GHz Xserves. Its lower ranking is due to the addition of other new supercomputers to the list.
Bloxter 1.1.5 ($20) is an arcade/puzzle game where the player has drop colored blocks and try to form lines of three or more. The update offers adjusted difficulty, optimizations, and minor bug fixes. [Download - 2.0MB] IMSL Fortran Numerical Library 5.0 ($1600) will be available in mid-December, according to the developer. "The IMSL Fortran Library is the gold standard mathematical and statistical library for Fortran programmers developing high performance computing applications." Version 5.0, includes new powerful and flexible interface modules for all applicable routines. Cluster Builderís Kit 2.0 [site not updated] replaces the Beowulf Tool Kit 1.0 from Absoft with several updated components. The Cluster Builderís Kit (CBK) is used in conjunction with Absoft high performance compilers and debugging solutions and is designed to facilitate building and setting up cluster systems. 4D 2004.1 Beta 1 is the first pre-release version of the new development software available to the public. Beta 1 features over 70 bug fixes and some significant new enhancements, including new commands and an updated interface to "make the development of powerful, beautiful applications easier than ever before." [Download - form] SyBrowser 6.1 ($90) is an application that can query Sybase, Oracle, PostgreSQL and MS SQL databases hosted on Mac OS X, UNIX, Linux, and Windows servers. SyBrowser v6.1 features include: enhanced keyboard navigation, the ability to "Show Results In SQL panel," and more. [Download - 2.1MB] FinFlow 1.5 ($25) is a general purpose financial application for solving time value of money problems. This update adds adjustable rate and fixed principal events, to meet the needs of Mac OS X users who are looking for a TValue replacement. [Download - 1.2MB]
Pirated versions of U2's new album have emerged on Internet file-sharing networks two weeks before it goes on sale, setting the stage for an early iTunes release to counter possible piracy. Earlier this year when the album was still in the final stages of production, U2's lead singer Bono warned that if a stolen copy of the album made it to the Internet: "release it immediately as a legal download on iTunes, and get hard copies into the shops by the end of the month." Meanwhile, Rolling Stone reports the band accepted no money for the recent iPod ad they were in for Apple, but they will get royalties on the special edition U2 iPod.
At last Friday's Billboard Digital Entertainment Awards, Apple chief executive Steve Jobs was crowned Visionary of the Year, while Apple took home the award for Brand of the Year. However, iTunes went 0-2, losing to XM Satellite Radio and Real Network's Rhapsody for Innovator of the Year and Best Downloadable or Subscription Music Service, respectively.
MacSpeech today announced the release of its iListen ScriptPak for MYOB AccountEdge. The new ScriptPak adds over 200 voice commands that control virtually every aspect of MYOB's popular accounting program. The ScriptPak is priced at $20 and is available immediately from the MacSpeech Web site. ScriptPaks work with MacSpeech's flagship product, iListen, whose TalkAnywhere technology allows users to dictate anywhere they would normally type.
NewTek, Inc., manufacturer of 3D animation and video products, and REALVIZ, developers of image processing software, today announced a special offer providing purchasers of NewTek's Emmy Award-winning LightWave 3D with the latest version of REALVIZ's ImageModeler for the Windows or Macintosh platform, at no additional charge. ImageModeler 4.0, a $1380US suggested retail value, is available free with LightWave 8 full-version and upgrade purchases for a limited time.
Peachpit has announced the shipment of its much-anticipated "Behind the Seen: How Walter Murch Edited Cold Mountain Using Apple's Final Cut Pro and What This Means for Cinema," by Charles Koppelman. In the book, Koppelman "chronicles Walter Murch's astonishing high-wire trapeze act as he works his way through the first large-scale implementation of Apple's Final Cut Pro editing software." Published under the New Riders Voices That Matter series, the book is available now from online booksellers and at local bookstores for $40.
Although a recent upgrade to Virginia Tech's Macintosh supercomputer has boosted performance by 20 percent, it probably won't be able to keep its top-five world ranking, according to Wired. In the new top 500 list that will be released later this month, the 12.25 teraflop System X will likely be surpassed by new, pricier supercomputers from NASA, IBM and others. System X was rated the third-fastest supercomputer in the world on last year's top 500 list. The system recently received an upgrade from 1,100 dual 2GHz Power Mac G5s to 1150 custom made dual 2.3 GHz Xserve G5s.
Aspyr has announced the release of the latest dedicated server tools for the Medal of Honor series, including the Spearhead and Breakthrough expansion packs. The dedicated server tool allows you to run a server under OS X for multiplayer, using the full resources of the Mac for the server when you do not want to also play on that Mac at the same time.
VelaTerra 1.0.1 ($23) is an interactive almanac and world clock that displays and compares local times, daylight hours, and moon information for time zones and cities throughout the world. The new version provides support for Cuba's new time policy, effective after October 2004. VelaTerra 1.0.1 is a free update for existing customers. [Download - 2.9 MB] eSanta makes it easy for your children to send a safe and quick eMail to Santa and receive a response while they wait. eSanta simulates an internet connection to the North Pole, so the user doesn't even have to have a real internet connection to use the software. eSanta is donationware. [Download - 188 KB] TrendyMac 0.9 is a pre-release web server logfile analyzer developed for Mac OS X. Unlike other solutions that live on a web server and require complex configuration, TrendyMac operates on Mac OS X. The application evaluates logfiles and presents an interactive analysis viewer with statistical filters and a search engine. [Download - 1.4 MB] Two Due 1.8 ($10) is a To Do List manager that features recurring To Do items, sorting, selection by multiple fields, automatic Web Publishing, multiple levels of categories, and more. The new version adds the ability to save different sets of filtering and sorting criteria as named views. [Download - 1.1 MB] Measure 1.0 ($39) is a unit-savvy calculator combined with a 3,000-item database of real-world numbers. It can be used to convert meters to feet-and-inches, figure out what you would weigh on Mars, multiply kilowatt-hours by years, compare population densities and boiling points, and find the square root of an acre.†Measure requires Mac OS X 10.2 or later. [Download - 966 KB] LiveDictionary 1.1.2 ($25) is a free update to a Safari extension that adds fast, convenient dictionary lookups to the web. Once installed, it becomes a transparent part of Safari; point to a word with the mouse cursor, and its definition or translation appears in a popup window. Version 1.1.2 fixes compatibility with Mac OS X 10.3.6 and adds a German localization. [Download - 10.6 MB]
Extensis Inc. today announced the immediate availability of an update to Portfolio 7, its Digital Asset Management solution, offering new and updated SQL connect modules for Microsoft SQL, Microsoft MSDE, MySQL and Oracle databases. In addition, the free update includes file format support for MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 and support for several additional digital camera formats. The new version also packs an updated filter for digital camera Raw images, extending usability for the professional photographer and creative community. The update, along with a 30 day free trial of Portfolio, is available from the Extensis Web site.
European Supermarket group and online retailer, Tesco, is launching itself into the world of digital music with an online download service designed to take on the might of Apple's iTunes, writes The Guardian. "But to power the service, which is launched today, the supermarket has picked technology from Microsoft - meaning owners of Apple's very popular iPod player will not be able to buy, download and listen to music from Tesco.com." Tesco's music library offers over 500,000 tracks at a flat rate of 79p a piece or £7.99 for full albums - a similar price to that charged by iTunes and Virgin.
InfiniCon Systems and Small Tree Communications today announced an exclusive partnership to deliver the industry's first complete suite of InfiniBand products to the Apple market. The suite includes a full line of managed switches, Fibre Channel and Ethernet gateways, a complete set of high performance host upper layer protocols (ULPs) and fabric management solutions - all optimized for the Mac OS X platform. "Apple users can immediately benefit from enterprise-ready InfiniBand solutions, with additional performance and management features to be introduced in the near future."
Audible.com, the leading provider of digitally delivered spoken word audio, and Indigo Books & Music, Canada's largest book retailer, today announced that Audible's download service is now available on Indigo's Web site. In addition, Audible is introducing a rebate program to customers at select Indigo and Chapters retail stores and online, which offers $125 CAD cash-back on any iPod or other AudibleReady devices with a 12-month commitment to an AudibleListener membership. The membership consists of any 2 audiobooks from Audible's inventory for $26.50 CAD per month, or 1 audiobook and 1 one-month subscription from Audible's Subscription Center for $18.50 CAD per month.
Portlock today announced the latest release of Portlock Storage Manager, which adds support for Yellow Dog Linux on Apple Macintosh and PowerPC hardware. Portlock Storage Manager is a solution for rapidly restoring downed servers when the booting OS is broken, for bare-metal restores, and server-to-server migration. The $395 software also works with NetWare and Windows systems.
Delicious Monster Software today began shipping its first application, "Delicious Library," a new tool for Mac OS X that creates an electronic card-catalog of all your books, movies, music, and video games. Delicious Library's features include 30fps iSight barcode scanning to import your stuff, photorealistic digital shelves full of high-resolution 3D renderings of your covers, Address Book and iCal integrated "checkout" to keep track of who borrows your stuff, and smart recommendations to help you find new things to add to your library. Delicious Library also boasts automatic syncing with iPods, two-click purchases from Amazon.com, and native XML support. The software is priced at $40, with an optional wireless Bluetooth LASER barcode scanner available for an additional $175.
Apple this weekend announced that the Apple Developer Connection is now accepting entries for the Apple Dashboard Widget Contest. "This is a terrific opportunity to begin developing Widgets for Tiger and to receive recognition for your work," Apple says. Entries will be judged on technical excellence, innovation, and ease of use. The developer of the winning Widget will receive public recognition along with an Apple 40GB iPod. The contest is open exclusively to Apple Developer Connection members whose memberships include access to pre-release versions of Mac†OS†X v10.4 Tiger. Submissions must be made between November 5 and November 30, 2004.
Several years of declining attendance, a battered technology sector, and a soured relationship between IDG and Apple Computer Corp. has left Macworld too small for the new Boston Convention & Exhibition Center (BCEC), says the Boston Globe. Warwick Davies, group vice president at IDG World Expo is quoted in the article, saying, "Based on feedback that we have, the show in its current size is not big enough" to fill the new center's massive exhibit hall. Last week, IDG announced that Macworld Boston will be moving from the BCEC to the Hynes Convention Center for next summer's event.
Seven insiders at Apple Computer sold more than $73 million in stock in October. So far this year, 10 top executives have sold $229 million in company shares, writes SiliconValley.com. Senior Vice President of Hardware Engineering Jonathan Rubinstein had the largest gain, exercising options to buy 500,000 Apple shares for $17.31 each, selling them the same day for prices ranging from $38.61 to $38.98 each, for a gain of $10.7 million. Other members of the company's senior management with gains from Apple options last month included General Counsel Nancy Heinen, $9.7 million; Senior Vice President of Retail Ronald Johnson, $9.6 million; and Senior Vice President of Software Engineering Bertrand Serlet, $1.3 million.
Gideon Softworks today announced the availability of version 1.0 of its FTP/SFTP client GSFTP. "With GSFTP you can efficiently and reliably fetch and transmit files to any kind of Internet server using FTP or SFTP. The goal of GSFTP is to be simple and to the point." GSFTP is fully multithreaded and supports multiple connections per browser. The application also sports a powerful and easy to use bookmarks manager and features cached directory listings for quick access. GSFTP is $20 shareware.
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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
Seagate 3TB unreliability suit expands
The Seagate 3TB class-action hard drive lawsuit has been expanded to more devices. The expanded suit, filed today, now includes Seagate's Barracuda 3TB Hard Disk Drive,¬†Desktop HDD 3TB, Backup Plus 3TB External Hard Disk¬†Drive,¬†GoFlex 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, or any other Seagate hard drive with model number ST3000DM001. The law firm, Hagens Berman, is seeking information from consumers such as time in service, purchase price, and the nature of any drive received in return from Seagate as a replacement for a failed unit. http://bit.ly/1Pc34Cq
BlackBerry Canada, Florida hit with layoffs
The BlackBerry campus has reportedly been wracked with layoffs. Sources familiar with the company's Waterloo office staffing claim that close to 35 percent of the local workforce has been laid off, with the deepest cuts being made in the BlackBerry 10 OS and hardware teams. Additionally, the state of Florida has been officially notified that the company's Sunrise facility will see 75 people fired. Enthusiast site Mobilesyrup puts the layoffs at around 1000 total. http://bit.ly/1Pc1Rep
Instagram tests multiple account support for iOS
Instagram is trialling support for multiple accounts in its iPhone app with a small number of users. The Facebook-owned photo sharing service confirmed the reports of the tests to TechCrunch, which will allow a single user to manage more than a single account within the app, transferring between two or three accounts with a few taps. It is unclear when the feature will roll out to the public, but it has previously tested it with the Android version of the app since November. http://tcrn.ch/1SPKEKh
Foxconn CEO declares Sharp deal near done
The Foxconn bid for Sharp is allegedly only waiting on specific details of the deal. Foxconn CEO Terry Gou has declared that his company has privileged negotiation rights for the Apple iPhone screen supplier, saying that "we have a consensus, the rest is a process ... I don't see a problem completing this process." Gou hopes the deal, worth up to $5.6 billion, will be formalized by the end of February. http://reut.rs/1SPEQjN