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Apple this week received two MIPA awards for its GarageBand and Jam Pack audio products. MIPA is a prestigious international award in the professional music production industry, presented by 58 international magazines. The sixth annual MIPA awards were presented for the best products of 2004/2005 in over 40 categories on April 7th. GarageBand, Apple's application for performing, recording and creating music, won in the "Best Innovative Product" category, making it the first software program to win in this category--although many have been nominated over the past five years. GarageBand 2, released earlier this year, is bundled free with all new Macs and is available as part if iLife '05. Apple's Jam Pack, which offers more that 2,000 Apple Loops and dozens of playable software instruments, received a "Best of" award in the "Sound Libraries" category as well.
Topics on the MacNN forums today include: Has the iPod shuffle changed how you listen to music?... Comparing "state-of-the-art" technology from the last decade to today.... Members discuss Sony's PSP handheld gaming and multimedia device.... Members' favorite gadgets and other pieces of technology.... Deciding when to buy a new Power Mac G5 as updates approach.... Members' PowerBook G4 setup pictures.... Ongoing discussion of the Mac OS X 10.4 "Tiger" release date.
SlidesNow! 3.0 is an application that allows Mac OS X users to deliver slides in a live webcast right next to live video from QuickTime Broadcaster. A built-in chat board allows viewers to communicate back to the presenter. The new version can now display live Web pages that may include content such as QT movies and Flash animations, can archive live or pre-recorded presentations for on-demand playback, and fixes bugs. Additionally, a View All Slides window allows viewers to peruse all the slides in the presentation at any time, while a Personal Notes window allows viewers to take notes and print them out. SlidesNow! features a very simple interface and is designed to be easy to use. It is aimed at the small group webcasting market. The software is priced at $50.
Apple is again offering its legacy 17-inch flat-panel iMac G4 for $1,100. The G4-based iMac features 256MB, an 80GB drive, and a SuperDrive. Apple is also offering two 12-inch iBook models for under $800--each with 256MB of RAM and a 30GB drive. The 1.2GHz model features a CD-only optical drive, while the 1GHz model features a Combo drive. The 14-inch iBook models feature a 1.33GHz G4 processor, 256MB of RAM, a 60GB drive, and built-in AirPort Extreme. The Combo drive version is $1,100, while the SuperDrive version is $1,300. Several models of the eMac line (starting at $530) and Power Mac G5 line are also available as well as refurbished version of its AirPort Express Base Station for $100.
M-Audio has unvieled, iControl, which gives users total tactile control over GarageBand. It provides users with dedicated transport buttons and jog wheel, eight rotary encoders for track functions like volume or pan, or effects parameters in GarageBand's EQ or any other AU plug-in. Also available is dedicated mute, solo, and record-enable buttons. The USB-powered iControl is automatically recognized by GarageBand; it will ship in May for $180.
O'Reilly has published "Photoshop Elements 3: The Missing Manual" ($40), by Barbara Brundage. "The very best way to learn Elements is just to dive right in and play with it," assures Brundage. She helps readers do that by avoiding unnecessary technical jargon and delivering straightforward guidance and instruction on everything Elements newcomers--and even power users--need to know. She explains why and when someone would want to use or avoid certain features of the program and delivers tutorials throughout the book with downloadable files for practicing. "Even Grandma wields a digital camera these days ... that's where Photoshop Elements 3 comes in."
Tim Bluntel, ColdFusion Product Manager at Macromedia, has posted a survey about ColdFusion support for Mac OS X. "Many people ask me about the platforms we support; why this one and not that; when will we finally support such and such? My answer is always fairly consistent: we support platforms based on customer demand. If there is inadequate demand for a supported platform, we may drop it: if a new platform is being requested by many customers, we may add it. Of course, there's one platform that seems to always come up ... if you're interested in ColdFusion support for Mac OS X, please fill in this brief survey. If we are to consider platform support for any future versions of ColdFusion, we need something more than anecdotal evidence that a market exists for it."
Panic has released Unison 1.6, the latest version of its Usenet client/reader software for Mac. The update adds support for SSL (secure) NNTP servers, offers automatic MacBinary decoding, and reduces the required memory. Printing has also been improved, as have download resuming and text encoding support. Usenet contains tens of thousands of groups catering to every imaginable topic. Unison offers several advanced Usenet features, including live MP3 streaming, complex file grouping, image thumbnails, quick search, Dock status, customizable favorites, and signatures. Unison is $25.
CNS Image 1.0 ($65) is a FileMaker add-on that can import images into container fields and export images from container fields. It also allows users to apply effects to images, extract layers from Photoshop, and download images directly from the Internet. [Download - 8.0MB] MacDopplerPRO 2.9.0 ($100) gives the user a "seat right in the heart of the Operations & Command Centre for every satellite in orbit." The new version adds Tuning Dial tracking, hy-gain DCU-1 Pathfinder driver, a Locations editor, and more. [Download - 8.3MB] InDesign Image Catalog 2.0 ($20) creates an InDesign document of all images in a folder, automatically. New features in the update include: Drag and drop to set the source folder, automatic frame and number of pages calculation, and long file name support. [Download - buy] ShowMacster 1.0 ($20) is an extension to Apple's iChat AV which enables the user to stream pictures, Quicktime movies and live screen captures during video conferences. ShowMacster is seamlessly integrated into iChat AV, adding a drawer to the video chat window. [Download - 336KB] iPatch 3.5 (€10) can compare the resources of two applications to produce a self-applying patch to update an older version of an application to a newer version. iPatch is able to compress data using zlib and fully supports prebinding and is able to launch Applescripts before or after patching. It includes a tool to compare files and folders. [Download - 5.0MB] iTerm 0.8.1 (free) is a full featured terminal emulation program written for Mac OS X using Cocoa. iTerm was merged from two projects, CTerminal and TerminalX, both of which were based on JTerminal project. This release fixes a few issues from the previous version, adds support to show bookmarks in a drawer of terminal window, and more. [Download - 5.2MB]
In brief: Recent rumours that Apple is preparing to update its consumer hardware product lines were given added weight today when sources close to Taiwanese contract manufacturer claimed it has won a deal to build a new, widescreen iBook.... Compuquest has shipped a $50,000 Apple Xserve cluster order to a film and television special effects firm in Toronto (known for its work with Sony and Disney).... Plans to change the way UK singles charts are compiled by combining store sales with online downloads have hit a setback after independent labels raised "massive" concerns over the move, saying iTunes, with its estimated 80% market share, will favour the big four labels.
Now AAPL Stock: 95.01 ( + 0.99 )
Secure your Google accounts today
Google is offering 2GB of Google Drive storage today for free, if users check the security of their accounts. As part of Safer Internet Day 2016, the scheme will give the 2GB storage extension to anyone going through the Google Security Checkup, examining connected devices, permissions, and other security settings associated with their Google account.
Swift benchmarking suite goes open-source
Following the release of new betas for all its platforms, Apple on Monday also made a suite of 75 tools for benchmarking Swift-developed coding projects, including libraries for benchmarking functions, a utility for comparing the resulting metrics, and a driver for running them. The company says it is asking the community for help in developing additional benchmarks, as well as further "helper" libraries and overall code review for better stability and performance. Apple plans to include benchmark pull requests in Swift's new continuous integration system as well. http://bit.ly/1W8u0EU
Instagram now supporting multiple accounts
As reported earlier, Instagram is now rolling out support for multiple accounts (up to five) in version 7.1.5 of its iOS app. The feature has been one of the main attractions of third-party Instagram clients, but it is unclear if users must seek out an "add account" preference in the app; additionally, some users are reporting that the ability to add accounts has not yet been added. The company says notifications "depend on when you last logged in, and the number of devices that are logged into that account," suggesting not all notifications across accounts will appear when logged into a given one. http://bit.ly/1moh95p
Pictures of Galaxy S7, Edge leaked
New images have been leaked of Samsung's new Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge. The images of the Galaxy S7 are very similar to a draft leaked earlier this year, with a curved back reminiscent of the iPhone 3G with the normal Samsung camera hump in the upper center of the phone. The picture of the Galaxy S7 Edge as leaked is running a benchmark application showing modest improvements over the S6 line, if accurate. Both models are expected to be formally announced in a February 21 press event hosted by Samsung. http://bit.ly/20Gf07X
Bambooti wooden skins for MacBooks
Bambooti has introduced premium wooden skins for Apple laptops that allow users to customize any design or logo directly on the case. Each Bambooti skin is handcrafted from sustainably managed forests, and are hand sanded and spray-finished to create an ultra smooth exterior. Bambooti's wooden skins start at $65 on the fully-funded Kickstarter which includes a custom design or logo of the user's choice that will be engraved on the product. http://kck.st/1PhE6Sb
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