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Tiger leak lawsuit settled
Apple has settled a lawsuit with another person whom it accused of leaking prerelease versions of Mac OS X Tiger. CNET News.com reports that Apple has confirmed that it has settled with Vivek Sambhara, one of three men it sued in December for allegedly posting developer copies of Tiger onto file-sharing sites. Last month Apple settled with a recent college graduate who admitted leaking Tiger and Apple still has a case pending against a third man, according to the report. Apple said that Sambhara has "accepted responsibility for his actions and Apple is pleased to put another part of this case behind us." Documents indicate that Sambhara was required to return to Apple any information he got via his previous Apple Developer Connection membership and that the judge ordered an injunction to prevent him from possessing or communicating any proprietary Apple information.
Apple patches iSync
Apple today released Security Update 2005-004, which delivers an updated version of iSync 1.5 and is recommended for all Macintosh users. The update protects against a buffer overflow vulnerability in iSync could lead to local privilege escalation. "The iSync helper tool mRouter contains a buffer overflow vulnerability [that] could result in the execution of arbitrary commands as root by local system users. Security Update 2005-004 fixes this problem by providing a patched version of mRouter." Apple also said that iSync 1.4 is also affected by this vulnerability and encourages users to update to the freely available iSync 1.5, and then apply Security Update 2005-004. Mac OS X users can obtain the update via Apple's Software Update mechanism.
Missing Sync Hiptop
Mark/Space has released The Missing Sync for Hiptop. The Missing Sync for Hiptop synchronizes your contacts, calendar events and to-dos between your T-Mobile Sidekick and Mac OS X's Address Book and iCal applications. The Missing Sync uses Apple's iSync technology to synchronize your data with the T-Mobile Sidekick's Web-based Desktop Interface. Any changes are then transmitted wirelessly to the Sidekick. The Missing Sync for Hiptop is available for $30 purchase.
Typeset font viewer
Drew Hamlin Software today released Typeset, a new application for Mac OS X that lets users "sit down and pick the perfect font for your presentation, logo, or design." Typeset is a full-featured font viewing utility designed for the creative professional. It lets users view collections of installed fonts and compare them to find the best one. Typeset can flag fonts of particular interest, help you create and manage styles for how you view your collections, display more details about particular fonts including copyright and version information, and also find font files on the hard drive. Typeset costs $19.
In brief: Mediafour is partnering with the makers of iPodSync to offer two powerful tools for the iPod at a discounted price: users who purchase XPlay before May 1 will receive iPodSync free.... Fernando Cassia writes about the "top ten Firefox browser annoyances," in order to counter the "we're the best of the world" attitude from "those in the Firefox camp".... Aspyr has begun a developer journal to track the progress of The Sims 2 for the Mac as it moves through beta testing and readies for a June 2005 release.... Tekserve in New York is holding a "Tiger Unleashed Party" on April 29th, with live music, food, beverages, and prizes.
iMaginator for Tiger
Stone Design today announced it will ship a powerful new image processing application named "iMaginator" on April 29th, to coincide with Apple's release of Mac OS X 10.4. iMaginator provides over 106 effects, transitions and filters to let you alter images in real time, providing an intuitive and easy to use interface for Mac OS X 10.4's Core Image technology. Layer images and text and apply any number of effects to achieve astounding artistic results. You can instantly save processed images to TIFF, JPEG or create QuickTime movies. iMaginator $50 and comes with "Free Upgrades For Life."
Zengobi releases Curio 2.3
Zengobi today announced Curio 2.3, the latest version of its environment for brainstorming and idea management. Curio 2.3 features more flexible idea spaces which can now automatically resize as figures are added or modified, and full idea space clipboard support allowing users to cut, copy, paste, and duplicate as well as drag, drop, and option-drag idea spaces within a project or between projects. Version 2.3 also adds customizable figure actions where double-clicking can navigate your idea spaces, jump to any figure anywhere in your project, create an email, or even launch a file, an URL, or AppleScript. It is available in several editions: Professional ($130), K-12 ($65), Home ($80), and Basic ($40).
Apple vs. mobile carriers
Apple will soon be facing increased competition from mobile carriers in the US, according to BusinessWeek. As widely expected, the publication says that Verizon Wireless, Sprint, and Cingular are expected to unveil services for downloading music directly to wireless phones later this year. "With innovative services and snazzier phones, the telecom players figure they can swipe a chunk of the digital music market that Apple cracked open with its iconic iPod. That sets the stage for a battle between two industries. On one side are Apple and the other tech players concentrated in Silicon Valley that see the computer as central to the future of music. On the other are telecom companies, from Finland to South Korea to the U.S., that think the mobile phone can become the center of this emerging world." Carriers are looking for direct-to-mobile downloads for about $2 per song, according to the report.
iPod envoirnmental concern
The environmental crusaders at The Green Guide have started a campaign (and a Web site) encouraging Apple to clean up its iPod act. In an open letter to company CEO Steve Jobs the activists claim that Apple lags behind companies such as Dell and HP in offering programs to take back broken or obsolete products from consumers -- especially in regards to the iPod. With already 10 million iPods in circulation, the group says within 1-3 years landfills will begin filling up with discarded iPod batteries that contain toxins like lead and mercury. In order for Apple to live up to its self-proclaimed commitments to the environment, The Green Guide says the company should: offer direct, affordable take back policies for the iPod and other electronics; design iPods so that batteries can be easily and affordably replaced with rechargeables; and support legislation that requires responsible manufacturing and recycling. A copy of the letter to Jobs, as well as an applicable phone number, are accessible from the FixItApple.com site.
Xeric Design has released EarthDesk 3.0, a major upgrade to the popular dynamic desktop map application. EarthDesk replaces the static desktop picture with an animated, real-time rendered image of the Earth, continuously updating in the background. The software supports eleven different map projections, political and satellite views, and renders accurate sun, moon and city lighting. Version 3.0 displays high resolution, real-time cloud cover, increases map resolution by 400 percent over previous versions, increases realism with smoother map edges, introduces more accurate map positioning, and more. Single user copies of EarthDesk may be purchased for $20 (upgrades are $10).
- Slick update for iMovie HD 1.0.3 (free) greatly enhances the usability of the Slick plug-ins with iMovie HD. This update fixes problems in titles using accented and extended characters, centers titles correctly, and improved support for widescreen and HD projects. [Download - 6.0MB]
BasaOne 1.5.1 (120 Euro) is a Graphical Web Application Development tool. This new version enhances MySQL 4.1 compatibility, includes MySQL password converter, improves speed, better Dock support and bug-fixes. [Download - 2.5MB]
Rubbish ($10) is a unique trash manager for Mac OS X. Rubbish deletes files after they've been in the Trash for a specified period of time, anywhere from an hour to a month. In addition, it doesn't allow you to delete files prematurely; files will be deleted on schedule only. [Download - 2.8MB]
Compost 1.6 ($9) is a Mac OS X utility that adds functionality to the Trash as well as manages items stored in it. It adds secure deletion, individual cans, more Get Info details, "shredding" (to bypass the Trash), and more. Compost also features both global and local Trash settings for each disk. [Download - 462KB]
Larm ($5) is a shareware game in which "an evil scientist has created evil robots that he has named Larmbots. These Larmbots have stolen Larm the lion's gold coins. Help Larm kill the Larmbots and retrieve his gold coins." [Download - 3.5MB]
LeadingProject 1.2 ($250) is an update to the professional project management software for Mac OS X. Version 1.2 features cash flow and overview reports that considering Multi-Project Workspace let users control costs of multiple projects and combine their data in detailed statistics. [Download - form]
iPod theft on the rise
Thefts of digital music players are rising, according to police in the Washington D.C. area. Earlier this month a man was critically wounded when he was stabbed and robbed of his digital music player as he walked near the National Zoo, the Washington Post is reporting. "Fences," who traffic in stolen property, are putting out the word that they are in the market for the players, said Detective David Swinson. "Burglars are taking things they can carry with them, and iPods fall into that category. They are not going to take something they don't have a market for or they don't think they have a market for." But victims of iPod theft aren't taking the loss of their players lightly, as they often form strong emotional bonds with their music libraries, and hence, players. "Everybody has a lot of memories they associate with music, and musical taste is usually very important to people," said Anita Boss, a forensic psychologist in Alexandria, Va., who has counseled crime victims. "You actually have a piece of identity theft here."
Peachpit Tiger books
Peachpit announced today that it will ship its first books on Mac OS X 10.4 "Tiger" on April 29th, the same day Tiger becomes available. The books are Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger: Visual QuickStart Guide ($25) by Maria Langer, and Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger: Peachpit Learning Series ($30) by Robin Williams. Peachpit's Tiger books are designed for all levels of users and cover all that's new in the OS, including Spotlight advanced search technology; Dashboard for instant access to information; Safari RSS Web browser; iChat with multi-way video; and more. The 'QuickStart Guide' provides tips to "get up and running in no time," while the 'Learning Series' offers project-based training book ideal for upgraders and new users.
The Macintosh Business Users Society of Greater Philadelphia today announced the start of an annual scholarship program. The program was created to identify and reward students who show likely promise as future business-oriented Macintosh users. The "MacBUS Student Award" scholarship program is opened to select students currently enrolled at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. Each year, from a rotating list of departments, MacBUS will select a junior or senior level class that has a major business-related assignment or project. Prizes will include a monetary award, and possibly hardware, software, or other prizes.
nik Sharpener Pro 2.0
nik multimedia today announced nik Sharpener Pro 2.0, an upgrade to Photoshop plugin that offers the ability to sharpen digital images. New features in nik Sharpener Pro 2.0 include 16-bit compatibility for sharpening 16-bit images, a larger preview area to allow users to see how the sharpening alters their images, and new tools offering more control of where sharpening is applied to the image. The plugin applies optimal sharpening to an image based on image resolution, viewing distance, paper type, and printer resolution rather than the traditional radius, amount, and threshold values used by other sharpening software. Version 2.0 now includes new sets of tools that allow users to apply selective sharpening: the sliders in the Advanced controls menu and the Selective tool as well as a new RAW Presharpening filter. It will ship in June for $160 (Inkjet edition) or $330 (Complete).
Panther Java issues
In Brief: Apple tonight will host a free Stereophonics concert at its Regent Street store in London and has introduced a special London iTunes Essentials section to celebrate the event.... Apple's Mac OS X Tiger, and the forthcoming Windows successor "Longhorn" feature new search paradigms for locating files and other information, but Apple was "first to market".... Apple says that after updating to Mac OS X 10.3.9, some systems may have issues with Java applications and Java-enabled websites when using Safari--including unexpected quits in both Safari and standalone Java applications.... Microsoft will launch one of its largest marketing campaigns in history in a bid to generate new consumer interest in the 3-year-old Windows XP operating system.... Meshbox Design has released Valerian ($100 introductory price), a set of icons specifically for cross platform application developers that features over 80 unique color icons in bitmap (.bmp), PNG, TIFF, JPEG and GIF formats.
Subscription-based online music services still face significant challenges from traditional pay-per-song models, according a new research report. Digital music services such as Napster and Rhapsody face an uphill when trying to convert music buyers to their new purchase paradigm, according to a BillboardPostPlay report. According to research by Ipsos-Insight, buyers prefer the pay-per download model made popular by Apple's iTunes. "With all of the recent media attention surrounding this rapidly changing market, these findings indicate that many downloaders still prefer a transactional payment structure over one that is subscription-based," said Matt Kleinschmit, a Vice President with Ipsos-Insight and author of the TEMPO research.
Seagate notebook drives
Seagate today announced a new products in its family of notebook hard disc drives, featuring the industry's highest capacity and performance for mobile storage. Combining performance up to 7,200-rpm and capacities up to 120GB, the 2.5-inch Momentus family delivers the ruggedness, low-power consumption and whisper-quiet operation. Seagate is offering three product lines: Momentus 7200.1, available in capacities up to 100GB at spindle speeds of 7,200-rpm, is designed for high-performance mobile workstations and small form-factor PCs; Momentus 5400.2, available in capacities up to 120GB with 5,400-rpm speeds, features low power consumption for mainstream notebooks; and Momentus 4200.2, available in capacities up to 120GB, is designed for low-cost notebooks and external storage. Seagate also offers Serial ATA as an option for Momentus 5400.2 and Momentus 7200.1 drives to deliver a 1.5 GBs/sec interface speed and NCQ (Native Command Queuing) for higher performance notebooks.
PodGear JumpSuit Shuffle
UK-based iPod accessory maker PodGear today announced the launch of the JumpSuit Shuffle for the iPod shuffle. The Shuffle case allows users to protect their miniature device from daily wear and tear; it is made from high-quality "super thin" silicon, which offers protection without diminishing the Shuffle's original styling. The protective case securely holds the iPod shuffle and is available in a variety of color combinations. Function keys are embossed on the JumpSuit Shuffle allowing it to be easily operated through the casing. They are available in packs of two for £10 (including VAT).
iSweet FireWire webcam
Harmonic Inversion today announced its iSweet FireWire webcam designed for the Mac. Using a genuine Sony 1/4-inch Color CCD, the "plug and play" camera captures video at 640x480 at up 30 frames per second for full motion video. It features a stylish metal/acrylic body, matching accesories, automatic brightness and white balance adjustments, and more. The 23-bit color camera works natively with Mac OS X 10.2 or later and requires a (shareware) driver for Mac OS 9/10.1. The camera includes hard and soft carry cases, a 6-pin FireWire cable, tripod mount, a combination laptop/monitor clip, buff cloth, and manual. The company says the camera works with iChatAV, Yahoo! Messenger, QuickTimeBroadCaster, BTV iStopMotion, and other applications. It is available for $130 from several internet retailers.
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