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Virginia Tech's "System X" Apple XServe supercomputer now ranks 14th among the top 500 in the world. The XServe cluster has 2200 processors in total, and was created in 2004. It ranks 9th overall in the United States. Nine of the thirteen supercomputers that rank above Virginia Tech's were created in 2005. The top ranked supercomputer is the BlueGene/L eServer Blue Gene Solution from IBM. It has around ten times the computing power of the Virginia Tech cluster. It includes 65,536 processors. Japan's famous Earth-Simulator supercomputer, which features 5120 processors, now ranks fourth overall. Three other Apple supercomputers made the top 500 list. Clusters at the University of Illinois, UCLA Plasma Physics Group, and Bowie State University tanked 66th, 162nd, and 166th, respectively.
Windows apps for Mactels
CodeWeavers today said it would work to bring Windows application to the Intel-based Macs when they are released next year. The Windows-to-Linux software developer on Wednesday announced a major expansion of its software porting capabilities to include support for Windows-to-Macintosh conversion, which it said would significantly reduce the time and cost of developing Mac versions of Windows software. CodeWeavers currently develops and sells CrossOver and CrossOver Office productivity tools, which allow Windows applications to run natively on all popular flavors of Linux. The company says that over 100,000 Linux desktop users use CrossOver Office to run popular Windows applications. In addition to the software for end-users, developers can also use the CrossOver technology to more easily create versions of their Windows application for alternate operating systems, such as Linux and Mac OS X/Intel.
Finale 2006 due in July
MakeMusic today announced that it is taking pre-orders for Finale 2006, its music notation software that is expected to ship next month. The 2006 upgrade brings powerful new features designed to enhance how musicians compose, arrange and notate music on a personal computer. It will offer "dramatically" improved music playback through a built-in Kontakt Player from Native Instruments and the Garritan Personal Orchestra Finale Edition, which features more than 100 studio-quality instrument sounds. Finale 2006 also offers new tools for teaching and learning music composition, including a new Studio View that integrates key sequencer tools into each music staff; and new professional controls, such as TempoTap to control the nuances of rubati, accelerandi, and ritardandi with the tap of a finger.
Apple KB roundup
Apple Knowledge Base roundup: One Knowledge Base article describes an issue with Symbian OS-based phones any syncing.... Another report details a problem with envelope printing from Address Book.... Apple notes that you can have Mac OS X run a script whenever you log in.... Users of Brother printers are advised to download and install an update from Brother if errors appear.... Apple notes that some of its applications might not open fully or at all if the Digidesign Core Audio driver has been installed as part of a Pro Tools version 6.9 installation.... A support document explains how to resolve a "server-error-service-unavailable" or an "Error 1282" alert in Print Center/Setup Utility.... Apple details the Archive and Install feature of the Mac OS X Installer.
BBEdit, Awaken, iPodder
BBEdit 8.2.2 ($200) is the latest version of the award-winning HTML and text editor for Mac OS X 10.3 or later. Version 8.2.2 is a maintenance release to fix reported issues and add minor interface refinements and enhancements. It is available free of charge to all registered BBEdit 8 customers. Users who download the free TextWrangler editor can upgrade to BBEdit 8 for only $130. [Download - 13MB]
Awaken 1.1 (free) is a digital alarm clock that wakes you up playing the iTunes playlist of your choice. Alarms can be created to alert you on a weekly basis at a set time, or at any specific date and time. It offers a customizable snooze timer, iTunes integration, and a new Wake-From-Sleep feature which can "wake" a computer from sleep. [Download - 900KB]
iPodder 2.1 (free) is a Podcasting application for Mac OS X 10.3 or later that allows users to search for, track, capture, and listen to Internet audio programs on the iPod or Mac. Version 2.1 adds one-click subscriptions, the ability to synch subscriptions to remote OPML files, pruning of older feeds, genre overriding in iTunes, more translations, accessibility improvements, more RSS options, and other features. [Download - options]
PrinterSwitch (60€) is a FileMaker Pro 7 plug-in that can easily control printer switching from within any FileMaker solution. The plugin can utilize any installed printer drive or can automatically create PDFs from within FileMaker, offering a customizable name and location for files. It runs on Mac OS X 10.3 or later. [Download - form]
Smart Scroll X 1.3 ($15) brings new scrolling options and enhancements to Mac OS X 10.2 or later, including Tiger. It offers scroll wheel support and live scrolling for FileMaker Pro 6/7, live scrolling for AppleWorks 6, a Grab Scroll function that can scroll by clicking and dragging anywhere in a window (Cocoa apps only), a "High Gear" for super-fast scrolling, and Universal Scroll Keys to scroll from the keyboard. [Download - 700KB]
ecOrganizer 2.0v1 ($100) is a FileMaker Pro diary-, contact- and project management system with optional modules for quoting, invoicing as well as time and cost management. It offers support for FileMaker Pro 7, additional options per user, more skintypes, tooltips, localized translations, Eudora support, print via RTF templates, improved export, date/time stamps in notes section, and more.
Mac IE security flaw
More refurbs from Apple
Apple has added a 15-inch PowerBook and several 14-inch iBook models to its Special Deals section at the Apple Store. In addition to the 12-inch iBooks starting at $800, Apple is offering 14-inch models for $900 (1GHz/Combo), $1,050 (1.2GHz/Combo/AP), $1,100 (1.33GHz/Combo/AP), and $1,300 (1.33GHz/SuperDrive/AP). A previous-generation 15-inch PowerBook with SuperDrive is $1,800. Several new G5 desktops are also available, including a single-processor 1.8GHz Mac ($1,300), dual-1.8GHz with 256MB/80GB ($1,500), dual-1.8GHz with 512MB/160GB ($1,600), dual-2GHz with PCI-X ($1,650), and dual-2.5GHz ($2,300). As noted earlier this week, several refurb iPod models are available as well as three sizes of Apple Cinema Displays and a single 20-inch iMac G5 model ($1,400).
iPod MP4 knockoff
A China-based manufacturer is offering what it calls the "Ipod MP4 Player." The device is the latest in a series of iPod knockoffs to come from Chinese electronics makers. While this new device does not mimic the iPod's appearance, it does borrow the "iPod" name in an obvious effort to confuse consumers. Unlike Apple's current iPod offerings, the device plays video in addition to music. It features a 20GB hard drive, support for seven card types via three memory slots, and compatibility with Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux via USB 2.0. It offers 3.5 hours of video playback or 7.5 hour of audio playback from a single battery charge. The built-in color display measures 2" diagonally and offers a resolution of 558 by 234 pixels. The device is larger and heavier than any current iPod, measuring 128 x 69 x 24mm, and weighing over half a pound.
Captain FTP 4.2
Xnet Communications has announced Captain FTP 4.2, an update to its file transfer software for Mac. Version 4.2 introduces the time saving "Automation Manager." User can now Automate the transfer of files/folders to happen on the date and time they choose. Users can schedule jobs to run outside of office hours, off-peak times, or even schedule jobs which will run at the same time every day, or every week. Simply select the files/folders to be transferred and "tell Captain FTP the where and when." Additionally, All Open Tabs can now be viewed or selected from the Open Tabs drop-down list. Active Tabs are now highlighted to show users which sites are currently performing an operation.
MPlayer, Money Minder
MPlayer 1.0pre8 (free) is a video player for Mac OS X that plays many formats. It supports most formats, including: MPEG/VOB, AVI, Ogg/OGM, VIVO, ASF/WMA/WMV, QT/MOV/MP4, RealMedia, Matroska, NUT, NuppelVideo, FLI, YUV4MPEG, FILM, RoQ, and PVA. Users can watch VideoCD, SVCD, DVD, 3ivx, DivX 3/4/5 and even WMV movies. [Download - 6.6MB]
Money Minder 1.6 ($13) is a personal finance manager for keeping track of expenses, income and bank account balances. This release allows auto items to be activated every 2, 3 or 4 weeks. It also offers export and Import CSV and Tab delimited files, new (optional) fields for Expenses and Income for entry status, and customization of the Graph fonts. [Download - 2.1MB]
Evite Widget 1.2 (free) helps users "stay on top of your social life." The widget will keep track of all your invitations by displaying the name and date of your upcoming events. It features event reminders, new RSVP notifications, and local bar and restaurant search. [Download - 76KB]
Silk 2.1 ($10) is an update that brings Tiger compatibility, a new icon, new installer, and bug fixes to the popular font tool. Silk enables Quartz text rendering in Carbon applications, substitutes fonts, allows changing of the theme font and more. [Download - 1.9MB]
ottmar 1.4 is a Dashboard widget that provides an ambient monitor for your Apple Mail or Gmail status. It shows a flower for each new email in your account, up to four. In addition, it can filter for text in the sender or subject of your emails, allowing you to watch for email from that special someone. ottmar 1.4 fixes google's change of RSS feed. [Download - 337KB]
Accordance Bible Software 6.6 ($40) introduces smooth Quartz drawing of the text and the graphics, as well as a few new features. The drawing of the layers on the Atlas features true transparency for the regions. The appearance of Greek and Hebrew text is greatly enhanced. [Download - 7.0MB]
In brief: Attendees registering for the annual FileMaker Developer Conference will save $200 with "early-bird" pricing until June 30, 2005, FileMaker announced yesterday.... Intriguing Development announced today that it will start shipping its new Mac-only scrapbooking product, iRemember, on June 27.... Since Apple revealed it would move to Intel chips, "Mac users are beginning to seem a little less smug".... Marketcircle today announced its full support for Intel based Macintosh computers, with updated software shipping in 2006.... Now Software accidently distributed nearly 13,000 customer email addresses yesterday during its announcement of Now Up-to-Date Software 5.
Mac sales could slow
Apple's move to the Intel architecture may affect sales in the near-term, according to a TheStreet.com columnist. The announcement earlier this month could reduce the surging momentum generated by the iPod and the associated "halo effect," which has been largely been seen as the reason for increasing Mac sales in recent quarters. "While Apple has seen an uptick in Macintosh sales in recent quarters, that momentum may be slowed by the recent announcement that it is switching the processor at the heart of its computers from the PowerPC line produced by IBM/Freescale to chips made by Intel. Although Apple offered valid reasons for the switch, it could lead customers to delay computer purchases or choose rival systems based on Microsoft's Windows operating system. Even with a recent drop, Apple shares -- at 29 times earnings estimates for the current year -- still are trading at a premium to its PC rivals. This implies big growth expectations for the company and particularly its computer business."
photoprinto 2.0 for Tiger
SmileOnMyMac has released photoprinto 2.0, an update to its photo album and scrapbook design and printing utility that features designer templates, iPhoto integration, and a variety of visual effects and adornments. Users can create and print customized photo albums easily using pre-designed, modifiable templates. The application also include basic photo editing tools, such as the ability to crop photos, adding captions, photo filters (e.g., soft edges), and more. Version 2.0 features a new page/photo organizers for fast navigation and organizing phootos, new thumbnail views, the ability to import photos via drag and drop, the ability to insert pages from any template to mix and match styles and layouts, improved help, and two new Scrapbook Layouts. It is available for $30 for Mac OS X 10.2 or later.
nStream 2.0 for WebNative
NetCrumbs has released nStream 2.0, a cross-platform utility for easily transferring files to a server running the Xinet WebNative or WebNative Venture software. nStream 2.0 adds support for WebNative 7.0 with the introduction of long filename and partial unicode support. Additionally, with this new release NetCrumbs introduces a new licensing model for nStream. The utility can be used in three modes: Demo, Lite and Pro. User can now try out nStream without the use of a server side license. A demo transfers up to 5MB of files, while a WebNative service provider can request a free Lite license to remove this transfer limitation. nStream Pro ($1,500) adds several ways to customize a users experience, including limits on file upload location and the ability to download files.
Bluetooth iPod headphones
Logitech today introduced the Logitech Wireless Headphones for iPod, which allows users to simply plug in the wireless adapter, set their iPod down, and move as far as 30 feet away using Bluetooth technology. The rechargeable headset features integrated iPod controls on the side of the headphones to adjust volume as well as switch tracks (forward/backward) and play or pause music. The headphones use advanced Bluetooth 1.2 wireless technology, which includes adaptive frequency hopping, for interference-free, crystal-clear digital audio. Logitech's headhpones also feature a 40 mm full-range neodymium driver, which provide rich audio and enhanced bass performance, according to the company. It will be available in July for $150.
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