Pixels Digital has released PIXELS:3D 5.5, a new version of its three-dimensional image rendering and design application. The updated version is a Universal Binary application capable of running natively on PowerPC and Intel-based Macs, adds new NURBS curves, supports ambient lighting, Volumetric scattering, indirect diffuse lighting, OpenEXR output and more. It also features faster OBJ and 3ds support, a more native Mac OS X native look and feel (Quartz fonts, system dialogs), support for Mac OS X's native Tcl Framework and its private Opus framework, adjustable samples for soft raytraced shadows, and improved pixel filtering, faster rendering (raytracing, depth of field, etc.). LogoMaker also now works with Illustrator 8 files. Upgrades are $50, while the full version is $150.
The American Balloon has released PopCopy 2, a menubar application that tracks the history of any and all text, images, or files that have been copied to the clipboard. Users can select an item by pressing a user-defined (by default Command+Shift+V) hotkey combination, which presents the user with a menu to choose a previously copied item, and when the hotkey is released, places this item into the clipboard, and pastes it into the frontmost app. Version 2, completely rewritten, sports new features such as customizable hotkeys, a new hotkey interface which lets the user preview three items at once, and better item previewing in the menubar, offering a submenu with the full path of a file, a larger preview of an image, or a longer preview of text. PopCopy 2 also adds support for text from Microsoft Office. It is available for $14.
The Omni Group has released OmniDazzle 1.0, a set of fun and useful enhancements that help users highlight certain areas of your screen, create special effects, and track the location of your mouse pointer. "By allowing you to manipulate your screen, OmniDazzle offers practical features for doing presentations, taking screen shots, focusing on specific tasks, and adding visual information to your desktop," the company said. With OmniDazzle, plug-ins can be activated to professionally emphasize a section of your screen, or turn your mouse movement into an area of focus that trails visual effects across your desktop. Each plug-in can be configured to suit your own particular preferences: change colors, make objects bigger or smaller, or change the way you activate the OmniDazzle plug-in of your choice. It is available for $15.
Now AAPL Stock: 94.02 ( -2.58 )
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
MIT demoes 'Eyeriss' AI chip for mobile
At the International Solid State Circuits Conference in San Francisco this week, MIT researchers presented a new chip designed specifically to implement neural networks. The researchers claim that "Eyeriss" is 10 times as efficient as a mobile GPU, so it could enable mobile devices to run artificial-intelligence algorithms such as Siri or Cortana, rather than uploading all data to a remote server for processing. http://bit.ly/1TISJBe
Pocket for iOS adds readability settings
Offline reader iOS app Pocket has updated, with reader-friendly changes. With the new revision, premium subscribers can adjust character spacing, and choose from eight new fonts including one that makes it easier for sufferers of dyslexia to read saved content. The app itself is free, with a premium subscription available for $5 a month, or $45 a year. http://apple.co/1KuILBl