Topics on the MacNN Forums today include: Members' opinions on the buying current Power Mac G5 models as updates approach.... Delays with new PowerBook G4 shipments affecting some customers.... Discussion of Mac mini and iPod "pyramid schemes" that claim to offer free iPods and Mac minis.... Speculation about the next iBook revision.... Apple's iPod software update, which was released yesterday.
Gefen today released its DVI Booster, a small unit that corrects video signal degradation that occurs over stretches of DVI copper cables (when used to extend a display away from its high definition source). The company sas that HD video transmitted through DVI cables can break down beyond 15 feet in distance, with all DVI copper cables experiencing this problem when used at resolutions of 1080i or higher. "With advance cabling and enhancement techniques using higher gauge copper cables, an additional distance of 30 to 50 feet may be achieved, but not always with 100 percent success. The DVI Booster guarantees a 100 percent accurate reproduction of the image at any resolution." The DVI Booster ($250) works with HDCP compliant content and DVI displays and cables.
Paradigma Software today announced Valentina 2, an update to its robust database technology. Version 2 includes new Abstraction Links, speed improvements, Unicode support, Valentina XML, SQL'92 compliance as well as native API calls in all products, simultaneous data exchange, and a transparent cross-platform file format. Others new features include new reference integrity, record level locks and 448-bit encryption. Valentina 2 Office Server is a robust, business ready database server that includes interface plugins for REALbasic, Runtime Revolution, Visual Studio, Delphi and more. Versions support from five to unlimited numbers of users, with pricing starting at $300. It is extendable and has no IP address limitations or "user CALs" pricing.
MC Hot Software has released WoW Status 1.3, a new version of the tool that displays Warcraft servers in your menubar. Users can select one server to be the preferred server and always know it's status, and set other servers as favorites for quick information under the menu. Users simply choose a server from a realm to add it to the favorite section in the menu. Selecting a server in the favorites will set it as the preferred server. Version 1.3 adds many new features including European support, server alerts, a built in crash reporter, launching of World of Warcraft via the menubar, and queued server support. WoW Status has changed from freeware to $6 shareware.
SpeakTunes 1.0 uses the voice capabilities of Mac OS X with a familiar "iPod-like interface" to allow users to navigate and play songs from the iTunes music library without looking at the display. With full support for the Keyspan Digital Media Remote, SpeakTunes was designed for home and auto installations where looking at a display is impractical. SpeakTunes supports MP3, AIFF, and protected AAC files from the iTunes Music Store. SpeakTunes registration is $15.
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Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE
French show carries on with iPhones
Following a prolonged power loss in a French TV studio, the crew was able to use a combination of limited studio lighting and a number of iPhones to continue taping the Saturday episode of talk show On n'est pas couché ("We're Still Awake"), using the resulting footage in the first edited episode. The Plus-model iPhones used for the impromptu shoot completion were either iPhone 6 Plusses (which shoot in 1080p) or 6s Plus models (which can shoot in 4K). The decision to use the iPhones to complete the show was made after a power outage at France 2's studio stretched to more than three hours. http://bit.ly/299wqDt
Scrivener for iOS to arrive in late July
For some long-time Scrivener users, to quote Paul Simon, "these are the days of miracle and wonders." As it marks its 10th anniversary in business, developer Keith Blount has announced that the long-awaited iOS version of his creative-writing tool Scrivener is to be submitted to the App Store, following strong praise from beta-testers. The program, expected in late July, will sell for $20 and work with both the iPad and iPhone. When we interviewed Blount last January, he added that Scrivener 3 for Mac would follow along shorty afterwards. http://bit.ly/2901XLE
WhatsApp now handles over 100M calls daily
WhatsApp is celebrating that it is being used for over 100 million calls every day. In a brief notice, the Facebook-owned messaging platform advises the voice-calling feature it rolled out to its users last year now deals with an average of over 1,100 calls initiated per second. Earlier this year, it increased the security of its calls and other messages, by introducing end-to-end encryption on all platforms. http://bit.ly/292HqCX
Adele's '25' album now streaming
Recording artist Adele has "pulled a Kanye" after saying that her current album "25" would not be available for streaming. The seven-month-old record, which has yielded a number of hit singles, is now available for streaming on all the major streaming services, such as Apple Music and Spotify, as of today in most major markets, with worldwide distribution to come. Reportedly, the singer had demanded streaming be limited to paid subscribers -- a condition that has hurt some streamers with artists, who aren't paid royalties for free or trial listens . Apple pays performers its normal royalty rates during its free trial, avoiding the issue -- and having repeated success in both signing up exclusives and placing those exclusives into the top of the charts. http://ti.me/28U7NOu
SanDisk iXpand case has battery, storage
A new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s case from SanDisk appears to be the "holy grail" of accessories: a stylish and protective case that offers both extra storage as well as the option of extra battery power as well. The iXpand Memory case offers either 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB of additional storage incorporated into the case, and an optional add-on battery pack (sold separately) adds up to an extra day or more of charge. Through the associated iXpand app, camera photos and videos can be automatically stored on the extra storage, optionally password-protected, The cost for the case is (in order of storage capacity) $60, $100, and $130. The battery pack's release data has not yet been announced, but the add-on should retail for an additional $30. http://bit.ly/291epHu