Griffin Technology today began shipping its AirBase, which showcases the industrial design of Apple's AirPort Express by providing a (desktop) stand for the portable music device. "AirBase offers major functional benefits, as well, raising your AirPort above neighboring structures to effectively enhance range and efficiency." Other benefits include the ability to quickly check the status LED for activity, built-in cable management, and more. The Griffin AirBase is available for $25.
Ranchero Software today released NetNewsWire 2.0, a major update to its easy-to-use RSS and Atom newsreader for Mac OS X. The freeware version, NetNewsWire Lite 2.0 has also been updated. Version 2.0 streamlines the award-winning RSS and Atom newsreader by removing the weblog editor, offers a tabbed browser, adds support for podcasts and enclosures, integrates with iTunes, and brings Mac OS X Tiger compatibility (including Automator actions). Other new features include syncing, smart lists, search subscriptions, and built-in styles. as well as an updated built-in list of feeds. NetNewsWire 2.0 costs $25 for a single-user license and $20 per person for multi-user licenses. It's available bundled with MarsEdit 1.0 for $40. It is a free upgrade to v1.x owners.
Nevercenter today released an update to its 3D modeling software. Silo 1.4 features improvements that drastically increase both productivity and the "enjoyment" factor in 3D modeling, according to the company. Version 1.4 features workflow improvements (including a new selection highlighting system), a new snapping manipulator (in addition to scale, rotate, translate, and universal), improved algorithms for mesh generation accuracy, advances in subdivision speed, several bug fixes, and more. It is a free update for existing users; the full version is available for $110 or as a 30-day trial.
Banc of America Securities today said the launch of a new paid music download service from Yahoo! will "have very modest near-term impact" on Apple's iTunes and iPod sales, contrary to reports from J.P. Morgan and PiperJaffray. Banc of America slightly lowered the target price on Apple (to $44 from $47.50) "to acknowledge the risk of increased competition in the MP3 market, with a focus on 2006." The tight integration between iTunes and Apple's hardware has had a "protective effect," according to the report, with a strong connection between iPod and iTunes sales. If the subscription model proves to be popular, the firm said it expects Apple to counter and match with a subscription model of its own, echoing comments made by PiperJaffray.
Olympus today introduced the Stylus 800, which delivers an array of new technologies, including Bright Capture Technology for low-light photography; a HyperCrystal 2.5-inch LCD for high-contrast viewing; metal, all-weather construction for protection against the elements; manual exposure and aperture settings for creative control and versatility; as well as an 8.0-megapixel image sensor for stunningly high-resolution prints. It also features an all-weather microphone, movie mode, USB 2.0 connectivity, new built-in help functions for beginngers, xD Picture Card support, an improved battery, and more. It will ship in July for $450.
FireWire Depot this afternoon announced three new products: the Newnex FireNEX800-SX FireWire optical repeater, the FireXpress 350 FireWire/USB2 combo enclosure, and the 2-bay FireXpress 350 Dual Combo. The Newnex FireNEX800-SX optical repeater utilizes an IEEE1394 PHY and optical transceiver to send IEEE1394 signals across a single mode optical fiber cable up to 10,000 meters in length. The Newnex FireNEX800-SX can also be used as a standard IEEE1394b repeater, extending a signal an additional 4.5 meters. The device costs $2000.
A security vulnerability in Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger allows a malicious .mov file to leak information to an external host. The exploit, which was discovered by David Remahl in Sweden, takes advantage "compositions," which have access to powerful tools known as "patches." Combining patches that provide advanced system information with patches that load information from the Internet allows an embedded .mov file to leak system details. A temporary workaround includes disabling the QuickTime plug-in and treating Quartz Composer files with suspicion. An alternative workaround involves disabling QTZ support in QuickTime by removing QuartzComposer.rcomponent in the QuickTime section of the system Library.
Kent Sorenson has released Snak 5.0, an update to his full featured IRC client that can be used to chat in internet meeting rooms. Version 5 features extensive changes to the interface and improved networking performance with IPv6 support, multiprocessor optimizations, HTML logging and many new features. Snak, now Mac OS X only, also offers support for multiple connections, multiple channels, an address book to store info, custom menus, searchable channels, file transfer and chatting via DCC, extensive scripting support, drag & drop support, and more. Snak is available as $25 shareware and requires Mac OS X 10.2 or later.
In brief: Apple has begun a new "marketing ploy" by sending targeted e-mail to users of its online iTunes Music Store (iTMS), suggesting different types of music and updating users on new albums from previously bought artists.... MacNN has posted a review of O'Reilly's iPhoto 5: The Missing Manual, Fourth Edition.... Hendrickson Software Components announced today that Sp@mX, the company's popular software for spam source tracing and reporting, has the added support for Apple's OS X Tiger.... APO/FPO Apple users trying to use the Mac OS X Up-to-Date program or purchase from Apple, can register with ShipItAPO! and get a mailing address in the U.S. and have Apple ship the item to that address.... Other World Computing has secured Dantz/EMS certification and Dantz Retrospect backup support for its Mercury SuperDrives.
KeynotePro has released Sonoma for Keynote 2, a new theme that "blends classic print-inspired styling with a color-neutral framework, designed to propel imagery, color and type forward while maintaining a consistent, structured feel." Sonoma includes 32 Master Slides: a mix of single-panel, full-slide designs and mosaic-based designs as well as a Supplemental file containing the Sonoma chart palette, 2 styles of buttons for use in interactive presentations, as well as style guides, accent objects and blocking objects that allow the user to further customize Sonoma layouts with copy & paste ease. Sonoma is available for $20 orin a Bundle with 2 other themes for $50.
Firefox 1.0.4 (free) is a security update to the alternative Web browser for Mac OS X. It is part of the "ongoing program to provide a safe Internet experience" for Firefox customers. [Download - 8.6MB] DiskWarrior 3.0.3 ($100) brings Tiger-compatibility to the popular disk repair utility. The free update will support Tiger's new Access Control Lists (ACL) and extended file attributes as well as improved journaling support and enhanced RAID support, including the new concatenated RAID volumes. [Download - 2.9MB] Calcline ($20) is a utility that lets users enter strings of mathematical expressions with a continually updated result . Calcline is based on a mathematical engine developed internally at Tension Software. [Download - 216KB] ImageEngine 2.0 (EUR 255) provides a number of functions to get information about and to export and render the images of a source PDF document. New with version 2.0: ImageEngine now offers the ability to be included into a workflow, using the method of "Watched Folders." [Download - 3.2MB] PC-Mac-Net FileShare 4.5 ($20) allows users to transfer documents, MP3s, family movies, photo collections and other files easily and securely between all varieties of Mac OS, Windows, and Linux computers across LANs, across cities and across the world. This major upgrade doubles file transfer speeds and adds new features. [Download - 4.1MB] SQLiteManager 1.4 ($40) is an update that includes the ability to read and write SQLite 3 databases. SQLiteManager is a database manager for SQLite databases. SQLiteManager can create and browse tables, indexes, and views, insert, remove, and edit table records, and execute arbitrary SQL statements. [Download - 2.0MB]
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates says that "Apple shouldn't get too comfortable atop the portable music playing world," according to The Associated Press. In an interview published Thursday, Gates said "I don't think the success of the iPod can continue in the long term, however good Apple may be....I think you can draw parallels here with the computer ó here, too, Apple was once extremely strong with its Macintosh and graphic user interface, like with the iPod today, and then lost its position." The interview was published in the German daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.
Intelli Innovations has released Barcode Producer 3.5r, a major upgrade to its barcode generation suite. Barcode Producer features a simple interface and trademark Symbology Guide that offers advanced barcode generation functionality--without the need for prior experience with barcodes. Version 3.5 brings integration with Adobe Creative Suite 2.0, including embedded Adobe Bridge metadata, integrated thumbnail images, enhanced Instant Transfer buttons, and EPS output optimizations. Other features include enhanced print testing, embedded IPTC keywords and authoring info, new asset tag creation features, improved menus, and more. It is available for $150 with free upgrades to 3x users and $50 for others.
In brief: Intuit confirms it has learned of compatibility problems between Quickbooks Pro and Mac OS X 10.4, but currently has no fix available.... Following our report of an Apple Store job listing in Pentagon City, VA, several MacNN readers reports an Apple "coming soon" poster on the second floor of the Pentagon City Mall.... Shares of Apple, Real, and Napster were hurt by the debut of Yahoo!'s music service yesterday.... Investment firm Piper Jaffray says that if Yahoo!'s introductory pricing is sustained for greater than one quarter, growth of Napster and RealNetworks will be negatively impacted (yesterday the firm explained why Apple will likely remain dominant in the industry).
Apple has proposed resolving compatibility conflicts in Safari by scrapping the KHTML rendering engine in favor of its own WebCore. In an e-mail cited by CNET News.com, leading Apple browser engineer Maciej Stachowiak suggested that architects of the KHTML rendering engine consider abandoning the KHTML code base, which Apple has used for the last two years. The suggestion, which KHTML developers said they were unlikely to accept, comes as Apple tries to quell rising dissatisfaction among the original architects of KHTML. These developers are calling the relationship between their group and Apple a "bitter failure," accusing the computer maker of taking more than it gives back to the open-source group.
Flashlite USB Data Drive is a multi-purpose device that offers a utility light and personal data storage. It features a bright white LED bulb, similar to other keychain LED lights. The Flashlite USB Data Drive offers a retractable USB head and built-in protective rubber cap. Initially, Flashlite will be sold through online retail stores and directly through the ION Technologies website. By the third quarter 2005, Flashlite will be available in retail stores. The Flashlite is currently available in Blue/Silver, Charcoal/Silver and Black/Silver. More colors will be available in the next four months. Memory sizes range from 128MB to 1GB.
ShinyDV has released its Quantum Motion Graphics Collection. The collection of motion backgrounds is inspired from "the wonderful world of subatomic particles. The Quantum Collection now takes its place along side of our other popular Smooth, Shapes and Scrapbook Collections. This is one of the easiest and most affordable ways to liven up your iMovie, iDVD, or Final Cut projects." Each set is available individually for $10 or in a bundle of four collections on one DVD-ROM for $25.
Sonnet in June will ship PodFreq Black, designed specifically for the iPod U2 Special Edition. This new PodFreq features a unique mix of black and clear materials to match iPod U2. PodFreq is an FM transmitter that fully encloses iPod, adding a channel selection display and antenna. It features an integrated dock with mini-USB 2.0 and FireWire ports for syncing and charging. It utilizes iPodís line-out signal for the best possible sound quality. PodFreq draws power from the iPod, rather than using batteries. The digital tuner broadcasts to any frequency between 88.3 and 107.7MHz. A car charger is included to replenish the iPod's built-in battery. The limited edition PodFreq Black will sell for $100. PodFreq continues to be offered in white to match the standard iPod.
CS Odessa has released ConceptDraw Reporter, new photo-reporting software which lets create pro-looking reports based on digital pictures and images. It features a variety of pre-ready document and layout templates, the ability to automatically structure and arrange text and photos, and flexible image and text operations, such as automatic fitting sizes, positioning, rotating, rearranging, converting photos into black-and-white, etc. Users can generate title and contents pages, sort images according to related topics, insert any background or watermark and much more. ConceptDraw Reporter also has a variety of export options (PowerPoint, PDF and HTML). It is available for $80.
Now AAPL Stock: 100.35 ( -0.06 )
Trade-up program expands in Europe
Smartphone users in France, Italy, and Spain will have until at least August of this year to trade in old iPhone, Windows Phone, or Android models at Apple Stores, and put the reward towards a new iPhone -- thanks to an expansion of Apple's trade-in program into those countries. The money given for the trade-in must be applied towards a new iPhone on a two-year payment plane, and traders must qualify under a credit check as part of the program. Interested customers can apply for the trade-in at their nearest Apple Store. http://bit.ly/1qPsldD
NBCUniversal adds Bravo, Syfy, E! to Apple TV
NBCUniversal has launched three new apps channels for Apple TV users. Bravo Now, Syfy Now and E! Now brings users access full seasons of current and past episodes of most of NBCUniversal's catalog. The Bravo Now app includes shows like "The Real Housewives of New York Cit," "Below Deck Mediterranean," comedy "Odd Mom Out" and "Top Chef." The Syfy Now app offers up shows like "The Magicians," thriller "12 Monkeys" and the reality show "Face Off." The E! Now app serves up shows like "Keeping Up with the Kardashians," "Botched," "#RichKids of Beverly Hills," Caitlyn Jenner's "I Am Cait," and "WAGS." While some content is free, most content requires users to authenticate via their cable satellite or telco TV provider. http://bit.ly/20K4Pea
Apple rolls out Arabic version of Apple.com
Apple has rolled out a new version of its Apple.com website for Arabic language users in the United Arab Emirates. The site utilizes a right-to-left reading format where it has been updated, although the upgrade is still in progress with a number of page links still in the original English language left-to-right format. Of particular note is that the site debuts an all-new custom Arabic font created by the Tarek Atrissi Design agency, giving it a highly contemporary look and feel. The new support for Arabic on its host website follows the introduction of full support for right-to-left languages in iOS 9, and the addition of Arabic support to Siri late last year. http://apple.co/20JHGIM
Adobe previews Photoshop content-aware crop
Adobe has previewed a new 'content-aware crop' feature from the next version of its Photoshop CC. The new feature is similar to its 'content-aware fill' from the current version of Photoshop CC, and potentially saves users time when cropping photos in a way that might otherwise leave blank white space in the frame. Adobe's 'content-aware' tech automatically assesses the blank space and seamlessly fills the blank space with the nearest related content in the space when a photo is expanded or rotated without the need to manually clone that part of the image. The feature allows users to move a horizon by adding more sky or ground, change the aspect ratio by adding content around the edges of the image and fill in the corners of an image when rotated during a crop. Adobe says the feature is coming soon and will be automatically available to Creative Cloud subscribers. http://adobe.ly/20JDFEu
Markzware updates Q2ID for QuarkXPress 12 files
Graphic design file conversion tool maker Markzware has launched a new version of its Q2ID tool. The InDesign plugin enables users to open QuarkXPress files within a new InDesign (INDD) document, without rebuilding the QXP document from scratch -- the new version includes support for QuarkXPress 12 files. Q2ID Subscription members can download the new version as part of their annual plan. A single-user can purchase the plugin for $200, with other licensing options available. http://bit.ly/1Z4dS9t
PopChar X 7.5 arrives
Ergonis Software has released PopChar X 7.5, an improved version of the company's tool for finding and inserting special characters and exploring fonts. PopChar X 7.5 adds support for combined emojis in the Apple Color Emoji font, enhances the "Font Info" view, and adds many further enhancements that improve overall speed and stability. PopChar X 7.5 retails for ‚ā¨30 ($34), and is free for anyone who owns a license for PopChar X 7 or purchased a license for PopChar X 6 on or after March 1, 2014 [4.5MB]
Safari Technology Preview release 5 arrives