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Coke is taking a page from Apple's lesson book. The world's largest soft drink company has taken time to study the message and advertising behind Apple's "Silhouettes" campaign before launching its own "Welcome to the Coke side of life" advertising blitz this weekend, according to Reuters. Coke representatives said that the company studied Apple's print and outdoor communication and also said that the message had a lot of "clarity," serving as a reminder about the product to consumers on the move, according to the report. "It is important with big brands that we evoke the feeling of what we are trying to say to people as opposed to telling people. You feel what the benefit of iPod is in the creative," said Esther Lee, Coke's chief creative officer.
Audition Products is planning to unveil a headphone kit based on "Liberty Link" technology developed by Aura Communication for iPod nano users. The headset is expected to cost less than similar Bluetooth wireless technology, using magnetic induction to establish a digital radio link between the iPod nano base transmitter and the headphone, according to AppleInsider. Similar to RFID (Radio Frequency ID), the technology is capable of creating a communications bubble with a range of 4-5 feet that entirely surrounds the user. The limited transition range may result in longer battery life and lower accessory costs, and like Bluetooth, privacy is maintained via an automatically generated code with each headphone and base. The headphone kit is expected to cost $80-100, and will offer roughly 10 hours of uninterrupted playback, according to the report.
FinLease 1.5.1 ($45) and FinFlow 1.6.2 ($15) updates both the advanced lease calculator application and the general purpose financial application. FinLease 1.5.1 adds the ability to omit the nominal annual rate and compounding frequency in printouts, as well as the option to save a lease as an editable FinFlow file. The update also supports date entry with the Command-hyphen key combination, and results can be saved as Microsoft Word or Excel documents. FinFlow 1.6.2 fixes various bugs that occurred when resizing the FinFlow window. [Download - 1.8MB (FinLease) and 1.7MB (FinFlow)] TimeCache 6.1 ($50) is a free upgrade to the time and expense billing application for TimeCache 6.x users. Version 6.1 adds an option to archive projects within the TimeCache data file, enables users to spell check notes and descriptions, offers a new category report that allows viewing activity by billing category, includes an option to automatically check for updated versions of TimeCache, and features improvements to data exporting functionality. The update also includes a variety of bug fixes. [Download - 4.8MB] Brain Tease 1.0.1 (free) lets users explore how the mind uses clues other than a word itself to recognize the word and how the mind reacts to confusing clues, while a second part of the software helps users practice short term memory skills. Brain Tease was developed to help users explore an interesting reading phenomenon and to help practice short-term memory, focus and concentration skills. [Download - 1.1MB] OsiriX 2.3.1 (free) is an image processing application dedicated to DICOM images produced by medical equipment (MRI, CT, PET, PET-CT, and others) as well as confocal microscopy (LSM and BioRAD-PIC format). The software is fully compliant with the DICOM standard for image communication and image file formats. OsiriX is able to receive images transferred by DICOM communication protocol from any PACS or medical imaging modality (STORE Service Class Provider, STORE Service Class User, and Query/Retrieve). [Download - 29.3MB] MacGPS Pro 6.3 ($50) updates the software designed to connect GPS receivers and Mac systems, allowing users to look up Waypoints or create a Route on Google Earth and transfer that into a GPS. The application works with Garmin and Magellan GPS receivers for transferring Waypoints, Routes, Tracklogs, and GPS satellite Almanacs. The update also transfers Waypoints, Routes, and Tracklogs from the GPS, displaying them on Google Earth.
XtraLean Software today released ShutterBug 2.0, a major update to the website publishing tool for beginners and advanced users. The application offers a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) design environment, coupled with a drag-and-drop interface. Version 2 adds over new 30 features, as well as 26 new themes. The software enables users to add QuickTime, flash movies and audio content to Web pages. "Xtra" text and image boxes, contact forms, page counters, HTML snippets, thumbnail rollovers, layered graphics, and the ability to embed other Web pages into sites enhances users' ability to construct custom pages. Additional new features include password protection; iPhoto integration; the ability to add external files for uploading; an archive option for project collaboration and backup; navigation submenus; easy email encryption; the ability to create graphical buttons for navigation; and more. ShutterBug 2.0 is priced at $50, is available as a free upgrade to registered users, and requires Mac OS X 10.3.9 or later.
Feral Interactive today announced that all future titles will be released as Universal Binaries, offering native compatibility on both PowerPC and Intel-based Macs. The company also said it will update many of its existing titles over the coming months to provide Intel Mac support. "For those of you who have already made the switch to a shiny new Intel iMac, MacBook Pro or Mac Mini, the updates to our older titles will enable them to run with greater performance than is possible under Rosetta." Feral adds that game fans should check for updates toward the end of April. Feral Interactive has released Chessmaster 9000, Bionicle, Ford Racing 2, Enemy Engaged, Republic, Worms 3D, and others.
In brief: SendStation Systems is offering users of its earBuddy earphone storage device ($15) a chance to win credit for the iTunes Music Store when they submit a short review noting which earphones -- other than Apple's earbuds -- are stored in their earBuddy, coupled with 2-3 photos.... Array Publications today announced the winners of the Development Tools 2006 competition, naming Rapid Application Development (RAD) software company Servoy the winner.... Take Control Books has released the "Macworld Digital Photography Superguide" ($13), a 102-page collection of Macworld's digital photography coverage.... IT-Enquirer has posted a review of PitStop Professional 7, EnFocus' certified PDF preflight and PDF editing software for Adobe Acrobat PDF workflows.... Xitel has introduced HiFi-Link for iPod nano ($70, shown at right), a docking station designed specifically to connect an iPod nano to home stereo equipment in high fidelity.
Marratech today released a Universal Binary version of its real time collaboration client, Marratech 6.0.1, enabling audio and visual conferencing on Intel-based Macs. Marratech plays H.264 video, and features full screen video as well as moderator functionality. The application includes quicker application sharing and supports hot swapping of USB audio devices. The update fixes a bug that could cause video to stop sending during a change in moderation role. The client/server application requires a licensed copy of Marratech Manager to set up meeting rooms. Marratech 6.0.1 requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later and Java 1.5 (pricing was unavailable). An unsupported version of Marratech 6.0.1 for Mac OS X 10.3.9 is available as a separate download via marratech.com.
Numark has launched the NuVJ Video Controller, a hardware/software solution designed for DJs who want to synchronize video with their musical performance. The NuVJ allows DJs to incorporate images and video clips in much the same way as mixing music. With the NuVJ, the VJ can trigger images and video clips, add effects to them, mix them through an onboard DJ style crossfader and tweak them to create advanced audio/visual experiences. The hardware controller works seamlessly with existing DJ gear and the software is compatible with most computers and laptops. The NuVJ Video Controller offers a wealth information, feedback, and visual effects, including video sample playback and effects from a wide range of sources, internal generation of patterns and backgrounds, real-time effects, crossover patterns, and numerous additional features. (Pricing and availability not noted.)
Mek & Tosj have released EnzymeX v3, an update to its application for molecular biologists that helps determine which restriction enzymes to use to cut DNA. In addition, it offers information on all the specific properties of these enzymes. The software now allow users to load any DNA of interest and analyze where exactly the different enzymes cut. Other features include support of many DNA sequence formats through the BioCocoa core, direct download of sequences from NCBI's Entrez DNA database, a new EnzymeX plugin architecture for custom extensions, and improved import and search functions. The free software runs natively on both PowerPC- and Intel-based Macs and requires Mac OS X 10.3 or later.
NetTeam today announced a new promotion to help celebrate Apple's 30th birthday. The Apple developer is offering a specially discounted bundle on its NetTeam Server product. The first 30 companies to order will receive a 30-user license for 1 year for just $1000. NetTeam Server is a web application that offers businesses of any size a Business Operating System for their web presence; it combines business process, content and collaboration tools to power a wide variety of business functions. NetTeam Server, which the company says is normally priced at $35 per user per month, offers the ability to setup a project extranet for sharing documents/tasks/thoughts, project- and author-based blogs to help streamline project management and knowledge management, build a document library with role-based permissions, and manage a contact database, virtual sales force, and members/volunteer management. It can also setup and manage a company website using Page Editor or uploaded HTML pages.
Now AAPL Stock: 94.46 ( + 0.19 )
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.
Google given NHTSA SDS waivers
In contrast to the California Department of Motor Vehicle's approach, the US National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) has confirmed that it is declaring the software in autonomous cars is the legal driver of a so-equipped vehicle. In a letter to Google, the NHTSA says that it "will interpret 'driver' in the context of Google's described motor vehicle design as referring to the SDS [self-driving system], and not to any of the vehicle occupants." Other matters, such as legally-required rear-view mirrors for occupied vehicles has yet to be determined. However, regulations specifying the "driver" need no longer be interpreted as meaning a person behind the wheel, as the agency writes that self-driving cars "will not have a 'driver' in the traditional sense that vehicles have had drivers during the last more than one hundred years" http://1.usa.gov/1QrAGtR
Dropshare 4 for Mac now available
Dropshare 4 for Mac has shipped, introducing support for uploading files and screenshots to Amazon S3 API-compliant services, like DreamObjects and OpenStack. The update also introduces a new popup design, an in-app editor for custom landing pages, an improved upload history window, and security improvements when using SSH connections. The paid upgrade costs $25, though it is free for customers who bought the previous version this year and half-price for those who acquired version 3 of the app last year. http://bit.ly/1XixV3q
Google starting phase-out of Flash ads
Search engine and advertising giant Google will shortly no longer accept Adobe Flash-created ads for its AdWords network. Starting June 30, ads in the once-ubiquitous format will no longer be accepted. Additionally, after January 2, 2017, the network will no longer serve Flash-based advertisements, and the network will be completely HTML 5 based. http://bit.ly/1PNx1uc