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Power Mac G5 Firmware Update 5.1.8f7 improves system stability of a Power Mac G5. It is intended for Power Mac G5 models released in June 2004. [Download - 1.2MB] Xserve RAID Admin Tools is the Xserve RAIDís powerful remote management software package that dramatically simplifies setup and monitoring of storage volumes. This release improves overall reliability and is recommended for all users. "If you are using Xserve RAID in an Xsan environment, you must upgrade the Xserve RAID with the firmware in this release." [Download - 4.7MB] HistoryHound 1.7 ($20) enables users to search the entire content of all recently visited Web pages, plus all bookmarked pages. Version 1.7 improves international support, adds search capabilities for Opera, Shiira, NetNewsWire 2, and PulpFiction browsers, includes several new convenience features, and increases reliability. [Download - 2.4MB] Express Dictate ($40) is a voice recorder that works like a dictaphone and a dock station for a portable recorder. Users dictate using a computer or a portable dictaphone/notetaker and send your recordings to a typist or assistant by email, internet or over a computer network. [Download - 1.5MB] Juicer 1.5 extracts images from many types of files on your computer. "Like most text editing applications can search a text file for a word, Juicer can search inside any file format for images of the types: JPEG, PNG, GIF, PDF, BMP and SWF." For convenience it can search single files or entire folders at once. [Download - 274KB] PureFTPd Manager 1.4 is a simple Cocoa frontend to PureFTPd, "a free (BSD), secure, production-quality and standard-conformant FTP server based upon Troll-FTPd", for Mac OS X. Version 1.4 now detects when it gets de-authorized, fixes a startup error, and fixes a crash bug. [Download - 1.8MB]
Wolfram Research today released Mathematica 5.1, a new version of the science and technology software system. Version 5.1 adds a host of new capabilities, especially for working with large-scale, diverse types of data. "We've introduced innovative algorithms to deliver unmatched performance for all steps in the data handling process--importing, analyzing, manipulating, or plotting," says Tom Wickham-Jones, Director of Kernel Technology. It also includes enhancements to Mathematica's unique Automatic Algorithm Selection, which automatically applies the best algorithm to each task. Mathematica 5.1 adds more algorithms and better intelligence in a number of key areas. It is available for $1,900 along with one-year of Premier Service.
Apple plans to launch an iTunes Music Store in Japan by March 2005, bringing according to The Nihon Keizai newspaper: "Apple aims to offer more than 100,000 songs with an emphasis on Japanese music at its iTunes Music Store, which is expected to be the largest music download service in Japan. Consumers would be able to buy songs from the virtual store, download them onto their computers and then transfer the songs to their iPod players." A fiber cut in the DC-Virgina area today completely cut traffic to MacNN for approximately 6 hours beginning at 1:32 pm ET. We apologize for the outage and our provider has taken steps to prevent such an outage in the future. More details can be found here.
MacWireless today introduced its MacWireless 11b USB Stick, a compact device that instantly enables any laptop to access an 802.11b wireless network. The WiFi device also incluides a 7.5-inch flex extension cable that can be raised as its own adjustable antenna. The 11b USB Stick works with Mac OS 9.0.4 up to 10.3.5 (Mac OS X 10.1 is not supported). It is available for $80. The 11b USB Adapter for desktops offers slightly higher output power for stronger wireless connections. It is available for $120. Both work with either Macintosh computers with a built-in or those with an added USB port.
Slim Devices today introduced four new metallic color options to its Squeezebox network music player, including Rhapsody in Blue, Tangerine Dream, Purple Haze, and Triple Platinum as well as classic black. The limited-time colored players will ship next week for $290 (wireless) and $210 (wired). Slim Devices also released SlimServer 5.4, a major update to the bundled software that adds an Internet Radio directory, a RSS News Reader, and support for new streaming formats (WMA on Windows and Ogg Vorbis radio streaming). The company also introduced a premium CD ripping service that will quickly and easily convert an entire CD collection into digital music files in a variety of formats -- MP3, AAC, WMA, WMA Lossless or FLAC Lossless-- with prices starting at $130 for up to 100 CDS (with surcharges for lossless or multiple format conversoins).
Aspyr today announced that Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six 3: Athena Sword for Mac, the sequel to Tom Clancy's Raven Shield, has gone gold and is scheduled to begin shipping Monday, November 22. This new title "takes the elite, multinational squad of counter-terrorist operatives to the exotic Mediterranean. Your mission is to command Team Rainbow while tracking the desperate remnants of the international terror network from Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six 3: Raven Shield. Prevent the terroristsí agenda of international anarchy and devastation while completing eight new missions." Athena Sword introduces five new multiplayer levels, five multiplayer game modes and seven additional fully-customizable weapons. It runs on Mac OS X 10.2.8 or later and requires a 733MHz processor. Pre-orders are available for $30.
Econ Technologies today released Portraits & Prints 2.0, an update to its $30 personal photo studio for Mac OS X. Version 2.0 offers new options to send photos via email or print-to-disk, allowing users to have their photos printed anywhere, such as a photo center. In addition to the bundled templates for creating layouts with any photo, it now allows users to download hundreds of free templates directly from within the application using the new Template Manager. Portraits allows users to easily add balloon captions with custom text via a point-and-click interface as well as optionlly automatically add image file names or EXIF data. The new Pro version ($50) allows users to edit and create custom templates. It is a free upgrade to existings users and runs on Mac OS X 10.2.7 or later.
Thursby Software today released DAVE 5.1, an update to its PC file and print sharing solution for Macintosh computers. It offers support for NTLMv2 authentication, provides NT Domain login, shares files and printers between Macs and PCs, supports Microsoft standard browsing (including WINS), offers three options for Security, supports Microsoft standard NTFS file format, and more. Version 5.1 brings support for latest Microsoft and Apple OS releases, adds support for user drop boxes, offers support for Symbolic Links, and has improved client write performance. It is a free update to existing DAVE 5.x customers and for all customers under an Annual Upgrade Agreement. The full version is $120.
Intelli Innovations today announced the release of the new IntelliScanner Pro, offering a complete barcode and item tracking solution for business and education. It can be used with business applications such as FileMaker Pro, QuickBooks, andMicrosoft Excel, or with the product's included IntelliScanner Businesss Essentials commercial software suite for inventory control, media management, and asset tag creation. The USB solution includes hardware, software, and asset tags to track items, scan barcodes anywhere, and more. It is available for $400.
AirPort Extreme Firmware 5.5 is the latest version of the firmware for AirPort Extreme Base Stations, offering the same fixes found the AirPort Express 6.1 firmare upgrade posted earlier this week, including a new installation applications, USB printer renaming, multiple printer support for the "Power over Ethernet" model of AirPort Extreme, WPA security for WDS networks, and more. [1.2MB] SubEthaEdit 2.1 ($35) is a new text editor that offers unique document collaboration functions. It adds a new Unix command line tool, customizable syntax colors (with import/export functions for color sets), the ability to export to HTML web pages (complete with collaboration metadata), improved printing, and an AppleScript interface to remote control basic editing and collaboration. [2.9MB] QiPo 2.0 ($20) is a complete rewrite of the movie preview creator that accepts a movie file and creates an image containing sequential frames that conform a preview of the movie. It supports MPEG, MOV, QuickTime VR, Flash, 3GPP, etc. Version 2 offers previews with fixed and variable number of frames, size-based limits, more complete HTML previews with thumbnails extraction and more. Upgrades are $8. [2.4MB] iSweep 1.2 ($15) will analyze your iTunes database and find all duplicate music files that you have running on your system. It can then remove the duplicate files from your hard drive or move the files up to a user-selected directory. Version 1.2 speeds up backup/delete functionality. It runs on Mac OS X 10.3 or later. [145KB] A Better Finder Launcher 1.8 ($10) updates the keyboard-based application and document launcher. Version 1.8 changes the default hot key for the application to the F1 function key and introduces the new preference pane that allows the hot key to be changed and unloads the resident A Better Finder hot key application from memory when the feature is switched off. [1.6MB] Adium X 0.72 (free) updates the popular multi-protocol instant messaging client. It fixes problems with AppleScript filters, contact list auto-sizing, and auto-away after idle; it also fixes a common crash when connecting to the MSN network. Several other changes are noted in the version history. [listing]
FileMaker today expanded the number of languages available for FileMaker Developer Certification Testing. Testing is now available in French, Italian, German, Swedish, Spanish and Dutch. The company launched the Developer Certification Program for Developers with testing in English last August. Since then, over 125 have received the designation of FileMaker 7 Certified Developer. The training and testing program tests candidates on the essential knowledge required to develop and deploy business or organizational solutions using the complete FileMaker 7 product family.
Apple's line of Cinema Displays is shipping with faulty LCD panels, according to a report in the IT Enquirer: "Most acutely affected appears to be the 23-inch line, which can exhibit a strong pink or yellow hue across the display that cannot be cured by colour calibration. Industry reports suggest that LG, which supplies Apple with LCD panels, may be the manufacturer in question. Apple's own web board is awash with people who are mad at the problems....One poor chap is onto his fourth display, after receiving three faulty units previously. Another Mac Addict in Japan reported that every 23-inch display in the Shinsaibashi Apple store was defective, and a similar story is reported at locations across the US mainland."
Five Across today announced a new workgroup server that operates in conjunction with its InterComm workgroup instant messaging software, providing corporations with flexibility for securing instant messaging, and improving performance for file sharing and project management activities. The Five Across Workgroup Server is an enterprise-class version that logs all individual chat conversations centrally, supporting corporate logging and auditing requirements. Local installation also provides improved performance for accessing large documents and provides unlimited, secure file sharing capacity. It is available starting at $3,500 for a 20-user license. Separately, the company announced InterComm 1.1, an upgraded version of its free workgroup instant messaging software that features support for RSS feeds.
Targeting sales of more than one million MP3 players a month and hoping to quadruple its marketshare, computer audio equipment maker Creative Technology said it would spend $100 million in 2005 to market its MP3 players worldwide, in a bid to gain marketshare from Apple's iPod, according to Reuters. "'The MP3 war has started and I am the one who has declared war,' Creative chief executive Sim Wong Hoo told a media briefing, adding the US would get the biggest share of the $100 million budget, followed by Europe and Asia. 'I'm planning to spend some serious money -- I intend to out-market everyone,' Sim said at the launch of the company's new five-gigabyte hard-disk, palm-sized Zen Micro player. Creative is targeting a 40 per cent share of the global MP3 market next year, up from 10 per cent in the June quarter, Sim said. Apple held a 17 per cent share in the June quarter."
Seagate today began shipping to retailers its Seagate Barracuda 7200.8 hard drive, which features up to 400GB of storage: "Seagate's native SATA interface technology with NCQ (native command queuing) enables the Barracuda 7200.8 to match the performance of 10,000-rpm SATA drives without sacrificing capacity, and at a much more economical cost per gigabyte. The Barracuda 7200.8 with NCQ benefits applications like high-performance PCs such as gaming systems and workstations, PC-based home media servers and entry-level SATA servers. In addition, NCQ can make booting, application loading and file copying faster for everyday mainstream users." The drive features either 8MB or 16MB cache sizes, a 7,200-rpm spin speed, and an 8.0-msec average seek time. It is available in 200GB, 250GB, 300GB and 400GB capacities with either a native SATA or an Ultra ATA interface and ships with a five-year warranty. (Pricing not available.)
Hollywood Forum today announced that Apple's Eddie Cue, Universal's Larry Kenswil and MTV Network's Jason Hirschhorn, EMI Recorded Music's Ted Cohen and EMI Music Publishing's Jody Gerson are to headline the Second Annual Music 2.0 conference on the future of music. Music 2.0 takes place December 8-9, 2004, in Los Angeles. Cue will deliver the opening keynote at 9:00 am on the first day. Record label executives, music managers, artists, professional service providers, software developers, wireless carriers, entertainment companies, device makers, manufacturers, developers and other high-level attendees will consider the future of the music industry in keynotes, panels, case studies and exclusive networking sessions.
SoHo's Apple Store has become the latest singles hotspot, according to an article in the latest New York Post: "Even though the state-of-the-art shop doesn't serve coffee or cocktails, singles say it's a great place to approach strangers because people often spend hours there and there's something in common to talk about. 'People in here glance at each other just like they do in a bar,' said Frederick Pina, 25, a writer and Apple Store regular. 'It's not a problem to open a conversation because you know everyone has similar interests.' Newcomers to the store say they are instantly struck by the good-looking crowd, thanks to its location in fashionable SoHo - right around the corner from four modeling agencies."
Apple today began offering select customers a coupon worth $100 off their next order of $700 or more to celebrate its seventh birthday at the worldwide Apple Store. "And what a year itís been! We opened the iPod Store for everything iPod, started a price matching program,** and improved our search feature so you can find the products you need faster and easier than ever. We also introduced new products like the iMac G5, iPod Photo, the Power Mac G5, and the entire Apple Cinema Display line." Orders must be placed by November 25, according to email received by readers.
Ampede today released ProPack 1.0, a plugin bundle for Final Cut Pro HD and Motion that gives users the ability to work with Illustrator files in both applications in ways that were only possible before in Adobe After Effects, including resolution independence and multi-layer support. ProPack includes two plugins, which are also available separately: Ampede PDF ($100) for Final Cut Pro HD, and LayerLink ($120) for Motion. Together, they give artists the ability to work with resolution independence regardless of the application. ProPack is available for $170.
Apple said on Wednesday that it would delist its shares from the Tokyo Stock Exchange beginning December 25, 2004, becoming the third foreign firm to withdraw from Japan's biggest exchange this year, according Reuters: "Apple said the turnover of its shares had been small, making it difficult to justify high listing costs.... Apple, which debuted on the bourse's foreign section in 1990, had only 1,768 shareholders in calendar 2003, with its daily turnover averaging a mere 508 shares, the company said. The average turnover for a listed company on the first section of the exchange is about 1 million shares."
Topics of discussion on the MacNN forums today include: The latest speculation and reports surrounding the upcoming versions of the G5 processor.... discussion of a possible time frame for a Power Book G5.... the possibility of a new eMac or eMac update.... discussion of new iPod deliveries, ship dates, and impressions.... several topics in the Mac OS X forum discuss issues with the Mac OS X 10.3.6 update.
nova media today unveiled ModemTest for Mac, a convenient tool to help when adding new devices to Mobile High Speed, a set-up wizard to connect a Macintosh to the Internet using a mobile phone or PC Data card. "ModemTest for Mac helps to decide if these devices can be supported by Mobile High Speed for Mac OS X." ModemTest for Mac will analyze a mobile phone or PC Data card connected to a Mac OS X system. A log file is created which has to be sent to nova media for closer inspection. nova media will then update Mobile High Speed to include this device for fast mobile Internet access.
Now AAPL Stock: 94.27 ( -0.72 )
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
Dropshare 4 for Mac now available
Dropshare 4 for Mac has shipped, introducing support for uploading files and screenshots to Amazon S3 API-compliant services, like DreamObjects and OpenStack. The update also introduces a new popup design, an in-app editor for custom landing pages, an improved upload history window, and security improvements when using SSH connections. The paid upgrade costs $25, though it is free for customers who bought the previous version this year and half-price for those who acquired version 3 of the app last year. http://bit.ly/1XixV3q
Google starting phase-out of Flash ads
Search engine and advertising giant Google will shortly no longer accept Adobe Flash-created ads for its AdWords network. Starting June 30, ads in the once-ubiquitous format will no longer be accepted. Additionally, after January 2, 2017, the network will no longer serve Flash-based advertisements, and the network will be completely HTML 5 based. http://bit.ly/1PNx1uc
Sonos now works with Apple Music
Wireless music system manufacturer Sonos has announced that its systems worldwide will gain compatibility for streaming the paid Apple Music subscription service starting today, February 10. "Music fans worldwide will have access to Apple Music features like For You, New, Radio, and My Music, and will also be able to stream the entire Apple Music catalog through Sonos smart speakers tuned for great sound in every room of their homes," the company said in an email to journalists. Apple Music's streaming service costs $10 per month, with a free three-month trial. http://bit.ly/1Wdi2Ko