Infoworld's Neil McAllister discusses some of the cultural differences within the open-source community as the KHTML project has offered several gripes with Apple's Safari web browser, which leverages the KHTML open-source code: "The open source community has rules, too, and these rules are laid out in the various licenses under which open source code is published. Although it may not always be the most cooperative company, everything Apple has done with KHTML code has been in compliance with the letter of the GNU LGPL (Lesser General Public License) -- a point no one has even tried to dispute." Earlier this month, one Apple developer proposed resolving compatibility conflicts in Safari by scrapping the KHTML rendering engine in favor of its own WebCore, which received support from Firefox lead engineer Ben Goodger, who said that "Safari's renderer is vastly superior to the KHTML used by Konqueror."
Stone Design today announced PreferenceCommander 1.0, a powerful Preference Manager that can be used to view, edit, update, restore, and save sets of preferences for any Mac OS X application. Preferences are user-specific settings that give Mac OS X applications so much flexibility. "PreferentialTreatment is a very useful utility which can add functionality to every Mac OS X application. Just click a button to restore an application to it's original preferences - or save and install custom sets of preferences for the task at hand." A 14-day demo of the $20 application is available online. [Note: Stone updated the application name after initially calling it 'PreferentialTreatment']
Apple is again offering refurbished flat-panel iMac G4s at the online Apple Store. The 1.25GHz iMac G4 is available for $1,100 with 256MB of RAM, a 80GB drive, and a SuperDrive. Apple is also offering refurbished, current-generation 15-inch PowerBooks for $1,700 (1.5GHz) and $2,000 (1.67GHz) as well as a 12-inch PowerBook for $1,500. Apple is also offering a refurbished previous-generation 20GB iPod ($250), iPod mini in Silver/Blue/Pink/Green ($170), and 40GB iPod ($330) and current-generation flat panel displays for $550 (17-inch), $1,300 (23-inch), and $2,600 (30-inch).
MacPractice today announced MacPractice 1.5, its medical, dentists, and chiropractic practice management applications designed especially for Mac OS X. Version 1.5 adds scheduling, electronic insurance submission, periodontal charting, image storage, and integrated word processing. MacPractice DDS Scheduling interfaces with iCal, providing doctors the ability to take their schedule of appointments on an iPod, phone, Palm, or PowerBook, or place it on the Internet or Apple's .Mac internet service. MacPractice EClaims provides online eligibility verification and claim tracking, and claims transmission via Internet or modem. MacPractice 1.5 is expected to available next month.
Digigami today announced that it is now shipping MegaPEG.X Pro HD 3.0, featuring both improved standard definition "SD" and high-definition "HD" MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 encoding. The new encoder features a built-in "videophile" MPEG decoder for transcoding from MPEG-2 (DVD, HDTV, DVB, HDV) sources. The new HD version is available as a QuickTime Exporter for $240 and as a full-featured Batch encoding and analysis tool for $300. Existing Digigami customers can upgrade for just $100. Free upgrades will be offered to customers who take a few moments to write a brief testimonial about how they utilize Digigami MPEG products in their own production environment.
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Apple brings iTunes Movie Trailers app to Canada
After five years, Apple has expanded its iTunes Movie Trailers app for iOS to Canada. As of Saturday, the free app allows movie buffs to see HD movie trailers for new studio and independent features, and explore some other movie-related extras such as photos, behind-the-scenes footage, or clips from upcoming films. Users can save trailers for quick access, read reviews from RottenTomatoes.com within the app, use AirPlay to send them to an Apple TV, share trailers, and peruse the top movie charts. http://apple.co/1UUKtwr
Apple expands CloudKit API, provides web interface
On Friday, Apple notified developers that it was expanding a feature of CloudKit to allow for server-to-server web service requests. "In addition to providing a web interface for users to access the same data as your app, you can now easily read and write to the CloudKit public database from a server-side process or script with a server-to-server key," Apple said in its announcement. Previously, interaction with the CloudKit public database was limited to apps and web only. http://apple.co/20h1RwP
Remote S for Tesla Apple Watch app drives car out
Developer Allen Wong has created the Remote S for Tesla app, which can be used to remotely activate the Model S electric car via an Apple Watch, and drive it a short distance. Aside from providing data about the car and some basic function controls, the unofficial app uses the manufacturer's Summon command to allow the car to turn on, exit the garage, and park near to the user's location. The app is available to purchase from the App Store for $10. http://apple.co/1PprF4t
Seagate 3TB unreliability suit expands
The Seagate 3TB class-action hard drive lawsuit has been expanded to more devices. The expanded suit, filed today, now includes Seagate's Barracuda 3TB Hard Disk Drive, Desktop HDD 3TB, Backup Plus 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, GoFlex 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, or any other Seagate hard drive with model number ST3000DM001. The law firm, Hagens Berman, is seeking information from consumers such as time in service, purchase price, and the nature of any drive received in return from Seagate as a replacement for a failed unit. http://bit.ly/1Pc34Cq
BlackBerry Canada, Florida hit with layoffs
The BlackBerry campus has reportedly been wracked with layoffs. Sources familiar with the company's Waterloo office staffing claim that close to 35 percent of the local workforce has been laid off, with the deepest cuts being made in the BlackBerry 10 OS and hardware teams. Additionally, the state of Florida has been officially notified that the company's Sunrise facility will see 75 people fired. Enthusiast site Mobilesyrup puts the layoffs at around 1000 total. http://bit.ly/1Pc1Rep
Instagram tests multiple account support for iOS
Instagram is trialling support for multiple accounts in its iPhone app with a small number of users. The Facebook-owned photo sharing service confirmed the reports of the tests to TechCrunch, which will allow a single user to manage more than a single account within the app, transferring between two or three accounts with a few taps. It is unclear when the feature will roll out to the public, but it has previously tested it with the Android version of the app since November. http://tcrn.ch/1SPKEKh
Foxconn CEO declares Sharp deal near done
The Foxconn bid for Sharp is allegedly only waiting on specific details of the deal. Foxconn CEO Terry Gou has declared that his company has privileged negotiation rights for the Apple iPhone screen supplier, saying that "we have a consensus, the rest is a process ... I don't see a problem completing this process." Gou hopes the deal, worth up to $5.6 billion, will be formalized by the end of February. http://reut.rs/1SPEQjN