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Markzware today announced an upgrade to FlightCheck Studio for QuarkXPress, examines and repairs documents as they are being created. FlightCheck Studio v1.3 for QuarkXPress now supports Mac OS X Tiger as well as now displays policy filenames on palette for easy identification. In addition, users are able to output policies as reports. It also fixes problems with Text Policies not being updated, mismatched scale values, approved Colors/Fonts lists, Locked rules, calculating Ink Density on certain images, and effective resolution. FlightCheck Studio for QuarkXPress is available for $200 (before a $50 discount offered during July).
Apple is readying a new iTunes promo. The company will reportedly offer free iTunes songs to customers who try on a pair of Gap jeans, according to AppleInsider. The promotion will run from August 8th through the end of the month, providing each customer who tries on a pair of Gap blue jeans with a small green iTunes card which can be redeemed for one free song from Apple's iTunes Music Store. All Gap US retail stores are expected to participate, while some "early back-to-school" locations may begin the promo early. Update: The iTunes promo will introduce three new denim fits for women—Curvy, Straight and Original—and one for men called Straight, according to BrandWeek. The "Find Your Favorite Fit" events is designed to get people to try on the new styles
RE:Vision Effects today releasd RE:Flex 3 for After Effects, Shake, and combustion 4. RE:Flex offers intuitive morphing and warping directly from within each application using its proprietary technology, while using the host program's own drawing and masking tools. The company says that RE:Flex is the first morphing program that combines hand feature-matching with automatic image registration. After aligning the hand matched shapes, RE:Flex 3 now uses the new tracking found in RE:Vision's Twixtor 4.5 product to automatically align the non-handmatched parts of the image. Version 3 also offers a new anti-aliasing setting to preserve memory, improved filtering results, and new render-only pricing ($120 per node) for AE 6.0 (as well as Shake). It is available now for $600 (AE) or $800 (Shake), with upgrades priced at $90 and $120. The RE:Flex 3.0.2 for combustion is free.
The University of Washington was offered a signficant discount as part of the details revealed in its online music deal with Dell and Napster, which would "force-feed" students the Napster music service and leave owners of the most popular MP3 player, the iPod, to buy their music elsewhere, according to The Register. Supported by public funds, the university was forced to release the financial details of the agreement, which revealed that UW will pay Napster $24,000 for 8 months of service, about $2 per student for 1,500 students--much less than the typical charge of $10-$15 per month. In addition, Dell will contribute $24,000 for another 1,500 kids as well as offer $53,000 worth of servers, as part of the agreement.
Henrico County is preparing for large onslaught of customers when its holds iBook firesale on August 9th. The county is liquidating its G3 iBooks for $50, following the completion of a one-on-one initiative that gave 23,000 iBooks to every middle- and high-school student and teacher in the Richmond, Virginia-area school district. The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that one man is "flying from California to buy a $50 laptop, and a story about a group of Germans hopping the pond has circulated for days. In fact, response to Henrico County's $50 Apple iBook sale has been so overwhelming that school officials are moving the Aug. 9 sale to the Richmond International Raceway, which offers more space, parking and security than an earlier-announced site."
Markzware today announced the immediate availability of FlightCheck Studio for Adobe InDesign CS and CS2. FlightCheck Studio v1.3 is described as a "new concept in quality control," offering realtime examination and repair of documents as they are created. FlightCheck Studio provides content creators with an "in-flight" preflighting tool. It is capable of detecting virtually any problem within a digital document--based on user-defined specifications--to catch mistakes in a document while it is being created. It also allows production managers to set up a common specification to share with other designers. The InDesign plugin supports InDesign CS and CS2 running on Mac OS X 10.2 up to Mac OS X 10.4 (Tiger). It is available for $150 (after a $50 discount for July).
Canadian legal residents who will be enrolled in a Canadian post-secondary institution in fall 2005 or are currently enrolled in a Canadian post-secondary institution can register to win up to $5000 worth of gear at the Apple store via the Win What You Want contest. Participants start with a $2500 total which can be boosted to $5000 by signing up ten friends. Choosing your "prize pack" allows you to customize your potential winnings, should you turn out to be the grand prize winner. The contest began July 25th and ends August 28th. Additionally there will be ten secondary prizes (iPod Shuffles) awarded, two per week.
Russound today revealed its iPod friendly solutions for listening to music via a distributed audio system. Russound multiroom audio-video products enable entire playlists to be shared and accessible throughout the home. For homes with existing Russound components, an iPod can be connected in a number of ways -- whether the system contains Russound's RNET products, such as the CAV6.6, CAM6.6, SMS3 Smart Media Server, ST2 family of Smart Tuners and UNO keypads, or an A-BUS amplified volume control system. "We've become used to having choices for how we listen to music, and iPods are the latest popular trend," said Russound Vice President of Strategic Development Jeff Kussard.
Aspyr today updated its website with information on Zoo Tycoon Complete Collection and said the title is now available for preorder. Zoo Tycoon Complete Collection contains the original Zoo Tycoon game, along with the Dinosaur Digs and Marine Mania expansion packs. In Zoo Tycoon, "you'll be challenged to build the most healthy and vibrant zoo possible. With an easy to learn interface, you can begin planning your strategy and building your ultimate zoo the moment you start the game. Which is a good thing since you'll need to build, manage, and maintain a zoo with over 200 animals, exhibits, and zoo materials. Plan wisely, because your success depends on your ability to keep the animals happy!" The $50 bundle is scheduled to be available in August.
e2Sync today announced Mac support for the popular Plaxo online contact and calendar service as well as a minor update to its popular conduit for Microsoft Entourage that syncs with AddressBook and iCal, enabling users to sync Entourage contact/task/calendar info to their mobile devices. Plaxo is a free Address Book service that stores contacts, calendar, tasks and notes, which can be accessed online through any standard web browser. The Plaxo service automatically updates your information once any contact updates his information. e2Sync's new e2xo application automatically syncs changes, allowing seamless (background) synchronization of the built-in Mac OS X Address Book and iCal with Plaxo--without any need for user interaction.
Screenmates: Flying Earth ($5) is a semi-transparent rotating Earth moving on your screen. Features include variable rotation speed, image size and transparency. Users can drag-and-drop to change the speed and direction, too. [Download - 2.7MB] MaxPod 1.1 ($17) lets users get daily news, weather and email. Also allows automatic synchronization between you local hard drives and enables backup of your music. Add/modify/backup notes, maps and lyrics on your iPod. [Download - 1.48 MB] iCash 2.4 ($25) is personal finance software able to keep track of income, credits, debts and bank transactions. Quantity discounts are also available. [Download - 8MB] Downsize 2.4 Update ($20) is a companion for your digital camera. You can resize, watermark and frame images. Easily create thumbnails or copyright-stamped images. Bug fixes in this version include dragging and dropping images and folders into the image well, resizing images won't cut off frame in some cases, and several others. [Download - 253KB] iStill 1.1 ($) is still image capture software which enhances the functionality of your iSight. Capture sketches, signatures, business cards, photos and other media quickly and easily. You can even tweak focus, brightness, and saturation as you shoot pictures. [Download - 580KB]
Harley-Davidson recently unveiled its 2006 line-- including a record seven new models. Harley's FL touring lineup features a standard auxiliary jack where riders can plug in an iPod. In addition, there are add-on modules that offer XM satellite radio, Bluetooth wireless connectivity, and a GPS receiver. "Nearly all of those options were available to try, and worked seamlessly through the in-dash display." The FL line starts at $17,800 with the Street Glide model.
In brief: Iconfactory released Somatic Xtras 2, a set of over 20 freeware icons expanding the Somatic genre of system icons and adding new replacement icons for applications and extras.... Paraglyph Press announced "Degunking Your Mac, Tiger Edition" for $25 to aid seasoned pros and new mac users cleanse/accelerate their Macs.... The Mac version of FeedForAll is available, empowering users to create, edit and publish RSS feeds with ease.... Harley Davidson unleashed seven new 2006 models which include a standard auxiliary jack for iPod-style portable players.
While many Apple enthusiasts, and even some industry analysts, are predicting the release of a portable video player from Apple, CEO Steve Jobs "seems to have other plans." According to a BusinessWeek report, Apple may offer video playback as a feature on forthcoming iPods, but the company is unlikely to market a new device specifically for viewing video. "I'm betting Apple learned from [the iPod photo] experience and will use video to fortify its current iPod empire -- not build a new one. That means no bigger, business-card-size color screen or the clunky battery that would be necessary to drive one, and no reworked interface. It means a device that, true to Jobs's oft-stated belief, isn't designed for watching full-length movies."
RealViz today said it would launch its first applications from its new line of "Powered by SMART" tracking products at the Siggraph exhibition in Los Angeles, USA next month. The new product collection includes version 4 of the RealViz tracking software, MatchMover Pro 4, MatchMover Pro 4 Motion Capture and 2 new automatic 3D tracking plug-ins, MMTrack for Autodesk 3ds Max and MMTrack for Maya. The products are expected to ship in August 2005. RealViz will demo the SMART-enabled products, as well as version 2 of their 3D previz and storyboarding software, StoryViz, at Booth No. 1161 at Siggraph at the Los Angeles Convention Center (Aug. 2-4, 2005).
Dekorra has released EazyDraw 1.8, an update to its easy-to-use vector drawing application for Mac OS X. Version 1.8 offers over 50 new customizable toolbar tools, Keynote export, expanded capability for scaled drawings, improved EPS export with LaTex and PSFRAG support. This version has been optimized for Tiger, providing significant performace improvements for large complex drawings. Numerous other new features and improvements include integrated gZip file compression for emailing drawings, and improved ICO support, which allows users to create favicon website badges. A $20 trial license is valid for nine months, while a full, unrestricted license is $95.
Apple today announced that it will supply 30,000 new iBook G4s to Broward County Public Schools for use by all of its K-12 students in the Ft. Lauderdale, FL area. "We're excited to work with Broward County to provide students with the best learning tools available," said Tim Cook, Apple's executive vice president of Worldwide Sales and Operations. "Thousands of schools across the country have improved academic achievement with the help of Apple's education solutions, and the addition of 30,000 iBooks will do much to help provide students with necessary 21st century skills."
Samsung and Napster have partnered with XM Satellite Radio to create new MP3 players that leverage satellite radio technology as well as are integrated with Napster's online music service. The new partnership will take on Apple's dominance of the online music market and challenge the market-leading iTunes/iPod ecosystem. Samsung said it would introduce its first MP3 players with XM Satellite Radio capability, including two miniature flash memory-based players that will utilize XM's Connect-and-Play technology. The players will also allow users to easily mark songs for future purchase through Napster, offering an integrated listening and purchasing experience.
Apple Japan has invited journalists to a special music event in Tokyo. The event, which is scheduled for August 4 at 10am at the Tokyo International Forum, may bring the official debut of the iTunes Music Store, according to the report. Macworld UK say that Japan is the world's third-biggest music sales market and that Apple has been negotiating with labels since 2003 to offer the local equivalent of a 99c per track tariff, while the labels have been pushing a price equivalent of $1.50. "Japanese CDs cost in the region of £20 each. With CD prices set so high it's no wonder that Japanese CD rental services are highly popular, leading cash-strapped local music lovers to illegally rip music from rented albums."
Bold Games, a division of Destineer Publishing, is partnering with Gabriel Interactive to offer two new John Deere games. Bold Games' new Welcome to Merriweather Farm game shows Johnny Tractor and his friends plowing, harvesting, and taking care of the animals on the farm, while Busy Days in Deerfield Valley features Danny Dozer, Barney Backhoe and friends hard at work digging, lifting, and helping out around town. The games are based on the Welcome to Merriweather Farm and Busy Days in Deerfield Valley books created and produced by Parachute Publishing. Both games are scheduled for release in September for $20 each.
Now AAPL Stock: 93.12 ( -1.16 )
Complex date setting bug crashes 64-bit iOS device
A serious bug has been spotted with iOS devices running iOS 8 or newer, with a 64-bit processor. If a user disables auto-check time, and manually sets the date of a device back to as far as it will go, then again to January 1, 1970, and finally rebooting, the iPhone is crashed, perhaps terminally. The bug affects the iPhone 5s and newer devices, running a processor from the A7 and up. Theories abound as to the cause of the crash, but the most credible seems to be a clock set to less than an arbitrary "zero" date, causing all manners of routines relying on the time setting to fail during startup. http://bit.ly/1TV6psS
Weber buys iDevices' iGrill, Kitchen Thermometer
Cooking gear manufacturer Weber is purchasing iOS accessory manufacturer iDevices iGrill and Kitchen Thermometer lines. As part of the purchase, Weber is working in parallel with iDevices to roll out a new version of the products, and associated apps, this spring. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. CEO of iDevices Chris Allen said that the transition will allow the company to "focus even more heavily on becoming a leader in the home automation market." http://bit.ly/1PFk3uZ
Vevo music video app launched for Apple TV
Vevo today announced its new native tvOS app for the fourth generation Apple TV. The new app allows users Siri Remote navigation for discovery of top videos by genre, or to search for individual artists and videos. Playlists generated on another device sync between all the iterations of the app. http://apple.co/1PFhxEU
HydraDock team unveils USB 3.1 Type C Roadie
KickShark, the team that brought the HydraDock desktop USB-C dock to market, has launched a Kickstarter project for The Roadie -- a USB 3.1 Type C standard-compliant pocket hub for the 12 inch Apple MacBook and other compatible devices. The Roadie occupies the same footprint on a desk as a credit card, with a short USB-C male cable on one end for connecting to a 12 inch MacBook, and a female USB-C port on the other end for plugging in a MacBook power adapter. One side has an RJ45 jack for gigabit Ethernet, and an HDCP-compliant HDMI jack that handles up to 4K displays. KickShark promises shipment of all products within four weeks of campaign completion. The "early bird" offer for the hub is a $69 commitment, with a $79 commitment for a Roadie after 500 backers have pledged. http://kck.st/1o6knw5
HBO Now has 800,000 subscribers
The CEO of HBO, Richard Plepler has confirmed that the online streaming HBO service, HBO Now, has 800,000 subscribers. When criticized for the seemingly low number, Plepler noted that the still nascent service was bound to Apple exclusivity during the fifth season of Game of Thrones. Plepler declared during the Time Warner quarterly earnings conference call marketing for the online-only offering would be enhanced in 2016. While HBO Now's critics are slamming the low numbers, the service must also compete against itself on cable, in addition to Netflix and other streaming services. http://on.recode.net/1QWoLHe
Unsafe IoT called threat to humanity
US Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told two different Senate committees yesterday that the Internet of Things posed a clear and present danger, and could be weaponized by governments. Before the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Clapper declared that insecure IoT "will bring new security vulnerabilities" and "will connect tens of billions of new physical devices that could be exploited" by those wishing to perpetrate violence or eavesdrop on the populace of the world. http://bit.ly/23Xvcky
Apple public betas for iOS 9.3, OS X 10.11.4
Following Monday's release of betas for the iOS and OS X, Apple has unveiled public betas for both operating systems. The iOS 9.3 beta includes all of the previously reported enhancements for education customers, along with Wi-Fi calling for Verizon iPhone owners, and a carrier update for T-Mobile users. The OS X 10.11.4 third beta includes enhancements to Twitter URL opening, Live Photo viewing and sharing, and Evernote note importation into Notes.