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MacPractice due in March
MacPractice today announced the March release of its all new Mac OS X practice management software for doctors' offices, including physicians, dentists, and Chiropractors., MacHealth clients will use the first release of a data migrator to transfer their MediMac, DentalMac or ChiroMac patient records into MacPractice software. This migrator will also help users of other practice management applications to import current patient data into one of the three applications. MacPractice, a suite of Cocoa applications, will feature integrated accounting, patient and insurance billing, and management and database reports "Abilities." The program is available for free along with Scheduling and EClaims, which will be available in the 2nd quarter, to all new subscriptions of telephone support between now and January 31, 2005.
Briefly: iWork review...
In Brief: Portland native Linda Rae Stockton will screen her documentary, My Heroes and Their Ladies in Waiting, at the Portland Mac Filmmakers' User Group meeting on Wednesday, January 26th.... MUG Warriors is offering students of Winona State University the chance to win over $500 in cash prizes at this year's annual Make-A-Movie contest using iMovie.... Mac/FileMaker consultant Scott Rose has opened a one-person-show in Hollywood about "a Mac computer geek looking for love and blowing it".... DetroitMac of Sterling Heights, Michigan has published a review of iWork '05.
BZFLAG: improved graphics
BZFLAG 2.0 is a major update to the first-person 3D tank simulation game for Mac that uses OpenGL technology. Version 2.0 is described as the is "biggest" release of BZFLAG, with a large number of new features. With this release, BZFlag now supports highly complex worlds that include more than just the traditional boxes and pyramids. There are graphics improvements across the board, including the addition of tank tracks and treads, tank animations when picking up certain flags, and more.
Mac Media Center Project
The Mac Media Center Project aims to develop a "Media Center" software suite that will enable users to connect their Macs to a home theater system. The Mac mini is the primary focus of the project, due to its low cost and small form factor. The Mac Media Center (MMC) project is being developed under the GPL, with the goal of keeping it free. The project is researching 5.1 audio, remote control and video output solutions. Already, 'Konfabulator' front ends have been created for most of the iLife applications.
Mac 21st birthday
In Brief: Today is the Mac's 21st birthday and several German Mac fans have digitised the only surviving video tape of the launch of the original Macintosh in January 1984.... Apple has posted images of its presence at MIDEM 2005, Europe's key annual trade show for the music industry, which took place in Cannes from January 23rd to 27th.... U2 may offer digital downloads of some of its Vertigo Tour concerts at the iTunes Music Store.... Photoshop World will be held i Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas on March 8-10, 2005.... Pitch Lounge Bar in New Zealand will host the first iPod night in Auckland on Thursday 27th Jauary from 8pm.
Apple Europe sales grow
Apple's December quarter shipments in the EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) climbed 33.2 percent from the year-ago quarter--almost double that of the overall market, according to a Macworld UK report. Pent-up demand for the iMac G5 and strong seasonal demand, drove growth of the desktop sales in the region by 52 percent (year-over-year); however, Apple is still not among the top 5 PC vendors in the market: "Next year is going to be a very important year for Apple as the industry watches and waits to see how successful its Mac Mini will be. The release of the mini represents concrete steps from Apple to attempt to leverage from its now very strong brand name stemming from its iPod success, and apply it to the PC market." Last week, we reported that Apple's global PC sales grew by more than 25 percent in the December quarter.
Creative Manager Pro 7.5
Creative Manager today announced an updated version of its ad agency and project management software for the Creative Design industry. Creative Manager Pro 7.5 can more easily manage schedules using multiple task assignments as well as offers tighter integration with Mac OS X 10.3.7 and more reporting features, including Cash Basis Income statements, and a Statement of Cash Flow. The company says that current clients are being offered free training in order to take advantage of the new features and that no installation or conversion will be necessary. Other enhancements in the free update include expanded menus to allow for faster access to functions, a Calendar View of the project schedule, more formatting options, and a beta release of the Outlook Synchronization Tool.
Reigncom vs. Apple
Korean MP3 manufacturer Reigncom is taking on Apple in the MP3 player market with its own drive-based player and heavy marketing: "Reigncom is the world's number one in MP3 players with flash memory sticks, while Apple leads the world with the hard drive disk (HDD) players. But recently both transgressed on each other's [territory], with Reigncom releasing an HDD player and Apple a flash memory model." The article notes that Reigncom is planning an ad campaign in major cities in the U.S., in Europe, and in Hong Kong: "The ads, titled 'Sweeter One,' show a beautiful blond woman biting into an apple. Apple in turn sponsored a TV soap, 'Sad Love Song,' where the iPod shuffle is constantly on show. The company's aggressive campaign also includes pop group G.O.D. as well as street promotion events during the graduation and entrance season."
Hallon, NewsHunter3, ...
Hallon 1.0 can create bookmarks from any AppleScript savvy application. Users can bookmark favorite songs, an email, documents, or contact information, etc. It offers .Mac synchronization, import/export preferences, Terminal support, support for iPhoto 5, and more. Users can create bookmarks with a custom hot-key or via the menubar item as well as manually enter notes and set a due date with alarm/reminder. [458KB]
NewsHunter3 v1.05 ($60) adds an innovative way to search for and queue Usenet articles for download as well as a fast download engine and a new single-window interface. The online/offline news reader offers realtime queueing, offline reading, automatic decoding, virtual servers for multiple concurrent connections, and more. [1.8MB]
MacTheRipper 2.6.1 (free) is a DVD ripper (extractor) that uses the open-source libraries. It removes CSS encryption, Macrovision protection, and RCE region protection--to create region-free DVD backups. It is now capable of removing UOPs, or User Operation Prohibitions, which are the settings that prevent you from skipping or fast-forwarding certain parts of DVDs, such as FBI warnings, previews, logos, intros, etc. [1.0MB]
Momento 1.2 ($10) brings drag & drop support, the ability to record audio notes, window resizing, clickable links support, status icons, a new menu system, tooltips, and more. The note is designed to replace and organize stickies as well as minimizes to a tab on the edge of the screen/desktop. [1.2MB]
Xgrade 1.0b1 is a new educational application for teachers that brings the ease of use of iTunes to Mark Books. Available as a public beta, it offers a familiar single-window style interface and automatic calculation of statistics, weighted marks, moderated marks and more. It also includes a note-taking/commenting facility, drag & drop support for adding information, simple backup, and a tutorial. [291KB]
iSnip 1.0 (free) allows users to manage and edit a collection of text clippings that can be easily accessed from a system wide menu. It includes the ability to create a snippet from the clipboard using a global hotkey, insert/copy the selected snippet, instant filtering, drag & drop organization, import/export of the snippet database, and more. [177KB]
250 million iTunes songs
Apple today announced it has sold over 250 million songs from the iTunes Music Store and said that iTunes users are now downloading 1.25 million songs per day--an annual run rate of almost half a billion songs per year. The iTunes Music Store is available in fifteen countries or more than 70 percent of the global music market, according to the company: "When we launched the iTunes Music Store we were hoping to sell a million songs in the first six months -- now we're selling over a million songs every day, and we've sold over a quarter billion songs in total," said Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO. "iTunes is leading the way into the digital music era and together with iPod is changing the way millions of music lovers find and enjoy their music."
GB Jam Pack 4 review
In Brief: iCompositions.com has posted a detailed analysis of GarageBand Jam Pack 4: Symphony Orchestra, including a full list of all loops and software instruments included in the expansion pack.... InterfaceLIFT offers 56 high quality desktop wallpapers in 2560x1600 resolution for use with Apple's 30-inch Cinema HD display.... PC World first look at the Mac mini says that the system has "enough oomph to do most jobs."... The Shreveport Macintosh User Group (SMUG) will hold its first official meeting on January 27, 2005 at 7:00 p.m.
Mac IP telephony support
Zultys Technologies today released MXIE, a Mac-compatible version of its desktop application for the MX250 IP PBX internet-based telephony solution. MXIE supports multiple languages and provides users, operators, or call center agents access to presence, instant messaging, chat, voice mail, and faxes. The MXIE application allows Mac users within either a single- or cross-platform environment to to log in as a user, an operator, or an agent in an ACD group, providing feedback based on call type and other call-specific information. MXIE provides an address book, control of any SIP phone, offers a display of others' status, allows calls to be initiated without needing to know the phone number, and provides user-based preferences for call routing. Licensing ranges from $45 to $65 per user.
The iPod internals
Electric Design offers a detailed breakdown of the various generational flavors of the iPod as well as the iPod mini, including a listingg of the player's internal components, their manufacturers, and functions: "When he first opened up an iPod, Carey estimated the bill of materials cost at less than $250, or roughly 50% of the retail price. By that tally, he suggested that the iPod "may be as much a hook to sell Macs as a profit generator in itself." While Apple won't say whether or not Mac sales were among its goals for the iPod, the music player has had a major halo effect on Apple." Another article looks at the new iPod industry and examines some of the myriad of paraphernalia.
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