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Apple to restate earnings
Apple today announced that it has discovered additional evidence of stock grant irregularities--in addition to the previously announced stock grant irregularities that has led to atleast two investor lawsuits. In light of the new evidence, it said will likely need to restate its historical financial statements to record non-cash charges for compensation expense relating to past stock option grants; however, Apple said it has not determined the amount of such charges, the resulting tax and accounting impact, or which periods may require restatement.
Vista Moment of Crisis
The doubts about Windows Vista continue to mount. In recent days, multiple prominent critics have stepped up to suggest that Vista isn't where it should be in terms of code quality for an October gold master, the most notable being former Microsoft tech evangelist Robert Scoble. One of the latest to chime in is pro-Microsoft journalist Paul Thurrott; though he believes Vista could still be an excellent operating system if given time, he says Microsoft was "fooled" into committing to a date and that the beta has so far been a "train wreck." Could this be the a critical turning point for Microsoft, especially given the approaching release of OS X Leopard? More observations after the jump.
MacScan 2.2 ($25) is a anti-spyware utility that is capable of detecting, isolating, and removing spyware, key loggers, Trojan Horses, and remote administration utilities from a computer. Version 2.2 features improved stability and performance, enhanced scanning stability, improved support for installers, better spyware identification, and several bug fixes. Now available as a Universal Binary, MacScan requires Mac OS X 10.2.4 or later running on any PowerPC or Intel-based Mac.
[Download - 2.5MB]
TextSoap 5.0r2 ($30) allows users to filter or remove forwarding marks, invisible characters, and formatting errors that users often notice in emails and long documents. The update adds better support for Eudora, enhances BBEdit functionality, improves regular expressions in custom cleaners, fixes bugs in the clipboard function, improves the toolbar, and makes installation of purchase engine easier. TextSoap 5 requires Mac OS X 10.3 or later. [Download - 8.4MB]
WebnoteHappy 1.2 ($25) is a bookmark manager that allows users to organize and remember important Web pages which can be personalized with notes and tags as they are bookmarked -- creating a Webnote. New in this version is the ability to synchronize changes made via del.icso.us on a periodic basis, improve FireFox support, enhanced privacy options, better web field management, new clickable hyperlinks, and several bug fixes. This version of WebNoteHappy requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later; a limited version of WebnoteHappy (WebnoteHappy Lite) is available for free on the product site. [Download - 457KB]
Tangelo 1.5b ($25) is a non-traditional weblog publishing tool which installs on the user's computer as a standalone application instead of using weblog software, thus providing easier installation, improved blog control, and ease of use. The beta release of the milestone version 1.5 features the redesigned interface, a new publishing engine, built-in skinning system, NetNewsWire integration, RSS/Atom publishing, and support for publishing podcasts. Tangelo 1.5b requires Mac OS X 10.3.9 or later with QuickTime 7.0 or higher. [Download - 9.4MB]
VelaClock 1.8 ($10) is a dashboard widget which displays the current level of natural light (daylight, twilight, or night), sun and moon rise/set times, moon phase information, local times and country flags for cities around the world. Version 1.8 adds improved support for Daylight Saving Time, enhanced registration process, new graphics, fixed Sri Lanka time display, and improved calculations along with minor bug fixes. Mac OS X 10.4 or later is required to use this Widget. [Download - 1.4MB]
Nova plugin, mini DVD-R
In brief: Nova Media today introduced nova media phone plugin 3.2 featuring iSync compatibility for Nokia 5500, 6233, E50, N93 and Sony Ericsson w300i mobile phones.... Verbatim today unveiled the first Mini DVD-R Dual Layer disk, measuring just three inches in diameter and offering 2.66GB of storage capacity on a single side.... ScotteVest has begun shipping its SeV Performance T-Shirt ($35-40), integrating three hidden pockets that allow the wearer to control an iPod through the thin QuickDry 3M fabric.... Faronics' Deep Freeze software has received the eSchool News Readers' Choice Award as Best Desktop Security Software.... OnScreen Science today announced an online payment program that gives users the option of paying for its OnScreen DNA software on a by-the-day basis.
Soloist Universal Dock
Media docks are usually exercises in compromise: if it sounds good, it's usually too big to fit on your work desk. If it's small, it sounds feeble. And in many cases, the inputs are often limited to a single device. Directed Electronics' new Soloist Universal Media Dock just might be a better balance between size, support, and quality. It uses NXT flat-panel speakers with a 10W amp that should offer better sound without a lot of extra bulk. You're also free to use multiple device types. While native docking support is limited to more recent Sirius satellite radio units and iPods with Dock Connector ports, there's also front and rear aux-in jacks for just about any other audio device you might own. You even get an alarm clock that can start playing music when you wake up. The Soloist should hit the streets in September for $149.
Microsoft's secret plan?
Could this be the strategy Microsoft's been touting for undercutting other consoles? Canadian retailer Future Shop is accepting pre-orders for an Xbox 360 Premium bundle, which - for $500 Canadian - will also include three months of Xbox Live, 1250 Marketplace points, and a copy of Project Gotham Racing 3. That would certainly take the bite out of the current Premium pack, not to mention look a lot more attractive than a vanilla PS3 for $600 US.
No Gears of War demo?
There will be no Gears of War demo prior to the game's release, Epic's Mark Rein has decreed. "We've said that before. Demos take a long time to create and polish and we can't afford to get derailed like that if we want to have the game in stores by Thanksgiving. Given a choice of the game this year or a demo this year and the game next year I'm sure every one of you would rather have the game this year because you're already planning to buy it. No idea if we'll do a demo or not after the game ships." A bit presumptive, but if nothing else, Epic does have plans for extra downloadable content.
Turtle Beach Headphones
This is an era when it often seems safer to shut out the outside world than deal with the aural nuisances that plague it. It's not uncommon to hear of people who wear noise-cancelling earbuds and headphones even when the music has stopped - all in the name of enjoying a few moments of peace. That makes the new ANR series of headphones from Turtle Beach all the more welcome. As the acronym suggests, these earpieces use active noise reduction through microphones to counteract whatever sounds surround the wearer. There are two models to accomodate different people: the ANR-10 (pictured) is a smaller, behind-the-head set clearly meant for the street, and the price is right at $60. The more stationary among us can opt for the ANR-20, which promises better sound quality in a bigger package for $100. The 20 also has a detachable cable for when silence is the top priority.
French law takes effect
The French law which repeatedly threatened Apple's iPod/iTunes ecosystem today officially went into effect, according to a report from the Associated Press. The bill initially passed the house with measures that Apple dubbed "State-sponsored piracy," but was watered down later in its progression through the French Senate prior to its final approval. The French Constitutional Council last week further diluted the new law, eliminating several measures that it said were unconstitutional. Industry watchers predicted that if the law passed in its initial form -- or even in its revised form following its passage through the French Senate -- Apple would close down the French iTunes Music Store, rather than offer competitors the opportunity to play tracks purchased from iTunes on their own portable media players.
Ericsson Sues Samsung
When 2005 came to an end, so too did a legion of technology patent agreements between the cellphone maker Ericsson (one half of the Sony-Ericsson alliance) and Samsung. No one seems to have told Samsung this, if you believe Ericsson. Samsung is still selling cellphones made while those patent agreements were in force, according to Ericsson, and the latter company is suing to stop production of those phones after attempts to strike a new agreement fell flat. The legal process began in February when Ericsson filed suit regarding EDGE, GPRS, and GSM patents; today marks the second phase, covering CDMA and WCDMA network patents.
64-bit Mac OS X, Mac Pro?
A seemingly authentic photo of an Apple banner created for the WWDC has surfaced, lending support to theories that Apple will unveil a successor to its Power Mac G5 systems at the forthcoming conference. The photo strongly hints toward a new version of Mac OS X running natively on 64-bit Intel processors, according to Electronista. Intel chose to create its new Core 2 Duo processors using a 64-bit architecture, and the company quietly began shipping those chips formerly known as "Merom" and "Conroe" in July. Rumors abound that Apple will use the new 64-bit processors in newer generations of Intel-based Macs moving forward, and that the forthcoming "Mac Pro" will make use of the new chips boasting 64-bit processing capability. Apple confirmed in mid-April that it would tout the next iteration of Mac OS X, codenamed "Leopard," at the WWDC conference taking place in San Francisco from August 7-11th.
Molyneux on Fable 2
Perhaps aware of the critcism levelled at him for the first game, Lionhead founder Peter Molyneux has told SPOnG that the sequel to his action-RPG will have a wealth of improvements. "I didn’t really feel it was possible to, for example, play the whole game without using any magic, or to play a game as a swordsman, so you’d feel like a real swordsman." He mentions that there will also be "a very, very, very big surprise" feature which he doesn't think has been done well in most games. His rather vague hint is that "it was done very well in one game, and that game is now almost 30 years old."
Pod+Bluetooth, Tiger leap
In brief: The Bluetooth centric site BlueTomorrow has posted a guide to iPod accessories which already utilize the technology, though Apple has yet to debut a Bluetooth-enabled iPod.... America Online today announced that it will make 5GB of online storage available for free to all Web users beginning in September.... Peachpit Press has released the Designer's Guide to Mac OS X Tiger, written for users still looking to make the Tiger leap.... Icon factory has launched a new design for its 10th anniversary, redesigned 'from the ground up'.... Graphicxtras has released a new version of its Adobe Illustrator 'creation' plug-in, allowing users to create abstract designs with bundled effects.
Soloist iPod, SIRIUS dock
Directed Electronics today debuted the Soloist Universal Media Dock (site not updated), utilizing included interchangeable cradles to dock numerous types of iPods and SIRIUS receivers. The new dock uses patented SurfaceSound flat panel technology by NXT, and is powered by a 10 watt-per-channel Tripath amplifier. The front panel of the device features an auxiliary in jack, as well as a headphone port. The rear panel offers auxiliary in as well as out, a USB port, and a built-in alarm clock with a snooze button that can wake users to a favorite SIRIUS station or iPod song. The Soloist is due to ship in September with a SIRIUS home antenna, an IR remote control, and an AC Adapter for $150.
WWDC 64-bit Macs
Just as the World Wide Developer Conference rumor mill is starting to reach a fever pitch, a seemingly authentic photo of one of the banners Apple will use at the annual developer conference has surfaced on the Internet today. The information found in the photo is far from complete, but it contains strong indications of what Steve Jobs will discuss in his keynote speech on Monday. One expected revelation is that OS X Leopard, the next version of Apple's operating system, will run 64-bit code natively - possibly without separate 32-bit and 64-bit versions, as Windows requires. Additionally, the banner suggests that the Mac Pro (the heavily-rumored Intel replacement for the Power Mac) may not be as dramatic redesign as many had once thought. Click the article title for the full photo.
Gangs of London leak
Sony UK is confirming that an internal beta of their PSP game Gangs of London has been leaked to BitTorrent sites. Spokesman David Wilson told GamesIndustry.biz that the beta is buggy and unfinished, and railed against game pirates, charging that "...there are proven links that exist between counterfeiting and organised crime and that has some serious consequences (and victims) that people should give due consideration." Gangs of London is a spinoff of the Getaway series of games for the PS2.
AOL Slashes 5000 Jobs
AOL may have used yesterday's news of itsnewly free services as a cushioning blow for harsher steps the company planned to take while switching to an ad-driven business model. Today, the access and content provider let employees know that up to 5,000 jobs, or a full 25% of the company's staff, will be cut within the next six months as part of restructuring efforts. While specific divisions weren't mentioned, it's likely that more of the cuts will come from the Internet access portion of the company, which is losing its customer base at a rapid pace.
Newer Technology (NewerTech) today launched a new recycling program offering a no-cost means for customers to properly dispose of old Powerbook and iBook batteries. The company will send a free return shipping label to customers who purchase NewerTech NuPower laptop batteries good for sending old batteries back to NewerTech for proper recycling. "NewerTech has long led the way with the highest capacity and longest lasting Powerbook and iBook batteries available," said Larry O'Connor, president of Newer Technology. "NewerTech is now proud to lead the way by taking steps that ensure proper environmentally-friendly laptop battery recycling/disposal with this no-cost option for our customers."
CinemaNow Burning Broken
The news that CinemaNow would let customers burn some movies to DVD was celebrated in the tech community: it was supposed to let us finally treat direct-download movie stores as mainstream options for renting movies. The reality is far from ideal, an engineer has discovered. CinemaNow software deliberately introduces checksum errors into the discs with the intent of making them hard to copy, but the errors are so abundant that the discs will either fail to burn or are rendered unplayable on many DVD players. Potential customers have been told not to be "fleeced" by such a clearly crippled service.
KeynotePro updates Sonoma
KeynotePro today released a major update to Sonoma -- a theme for Apple's Keynote presentation software, as well as two new EP Edition themes optimized for exporting presentations to fifth-generation video-capable iPods. Sonoma 2 includes up to 53 master-slides (Pro/HD) with more variations on popular layouts from the original, as well as a range of new layout options designed to make the theme more flexible. Sonoma 2 is available in a pro edition which includes Sonoma 2 HD for $30, or in a bundle with two other pro edition themes for $80. The standard edition is priced at $20.
Levine on BioShock
Irrational Games' Ken Levine, producer on the PC, 360 and PS3 title BioShock, recently answered a host of questions posed to him by fansite Through the Looking Glass. It's a great read. Topics include story, art design, moral choices, and the themes of horror. Says Levine in one quote: "I'm not really afraid of genetic technology, atomic weapons or killer robots. I'm afraid of ideology, and the dangers of extreme ideology. In a lot of the games I've worked on, I've tried to put the player in the role of the guy stuck in the middle."
FileBrowse 3D file utility
R Green Blue today announced FileBrowse, a new easy-to-use file browser for Mac OS X featuring 3D icons, 3D thumbnails, and large in-context previews with grouping as well as sorting capabilities. "The standard file browser on the Mac is the Finder, which can show thumbnails of image files, but shows all other files and folders as standard icons. Because all items of a certain type have the same icon, it's hard to distinguish the items. The icons don't give any clue about the specific contents of the files and folders," wrote R Green Blue. FileBrowse can show thumbnails for numerous file types, while folder icons can display the contents inside without actually opening the folder. FileBrowse uses 3D icons rather than pre-generated drawings, rendered in real-time with perspective and anti-aliasing to remove jagged edges. FileBrowse is currently in private beta status, with version 1.0 expected by mid-August for $25 (system requirements were unavailable).
TabletKiosk Intel UMPC
TabletKiosk has generally been regarded as one of the better early UMPC manufacturers, even as it has dealt with the same problems that plague other vendors (especially short battery life). This explains why the company now has the confidence to release two new UMPC models by the end of August: the i7209 and i7210. While earlier models shipped with Via's C7 processor, 2.5" notebook hard drives, and an anemic 256 MB of RAM, the new units seem better tailored to the compact and battery-dependent nature of a UMPC. They're equipped with ULV Intel processors, more RAM, and the 1.8" drives that we typically associate with iPods and other digital audio players. The i7209 starts at $1099 for a 900 MHz Celeron-M with 512 MB of RAM and a 30 GB drive, while the i7210 steps up to a 1 GHz Pentium-M with 1 GB of RAM and a 60 GB drive. These are clearly high-end units that cater to those of us who may treat a UMPC as our only portable computer.
Phantom Lapboard Demo
While many have been keen to write off Phantom Entertainment (formerly Infinium Labs) as champions of vaporware, having yet to release any products after years of operation, the company may be ready to turn a corner. Having previously announced the Lapboard controller from its still unreleased game console as a stand-alone product, Phantom today announced that it would demonstrate the Lapboard at the European Games Convention in Leipzig, which begins August 24th. For those who are unfamiliar, the Lapboard is a wireless mouse and keyboard set with a twist: the keyboard has a mousing surface underneath, giving users room for a full-size mouse on their lap instead of the trackpads that are more common for these living room devices. Phantom hopes to launch the final Lapboard in November.
ExpressCard EVDO Available
Those of us who buy laptops on the cutting edge have faced a dilemma when trying to connect to mobile broadband services: many of these computers either offer internal support for only one of these services, or else have abandoned the old PC Card format in favor of the much faster ExpressCard - for which we've seen few if any adapters. Thankfully, Verizon customers can now pick up the V640, an EVDO ExpressCard adapter made by Novatel if they order from the cellular provider's online store (retail stores will see the adapters on the 24th). Sprint customers will probably get the unit under the S640 name. The V640 is expensive at $180 alongside a two-year agreement, but for those of us who need to go online and can't rely on WiFi hotspots, it will be worth the price.
GuitarPort XT unveiled
Line 6 has unveiled GuitarPort XT, a hardware and software bundle that includes GearBox 2.0 software at the Summer NAMM convention. GuitarPort XT delivers 18 classic/modern guitar amp models, 24 cab models, and 28 studio/stompbox effects. The bundle also includes tools such as a chromatic tuner, hum reducer, metronome, and riff looper with half-speed playback. GuitarPort Online members can access numerous guitar tones, tracks, and tablature over the internet. An online library features hundreds of guitar songs, ranging from blues to modern rock and country. "Recorded with the same painstaking detail as the original versions, users can learn their favorite songs by using the provided tablature, then 'sit in' with a band like Double Trouble on Stevie Ray Vaughan tunes." GuitarPort XT is slated for shipment in late summer of this year, and offers support for Intel-based Macs.
Faster Win-Mac game ports
TransGaming today released the "Cider" portability engine for Intel-based Macs, offering game developers and publishers the ability to deploy Windows-based games on new Macs quickly and easily, without the need for traditional arduous porting. "TransGaming's Cider product will change the landscape of the Mac gaming market. Mac gamers have always patiently waited many months for access to only a handful of titles. With Cider, game developers and publishers can easily extend their triple A portfolio to Intel Mac without any effort or delay, which means that avid Mac gamers will have access to triple A video games coincidental with the Windows release," said Vikas Gupta, president and CEO of TransGaming. The company already has agreements in place with a number of the top tier video game publishers to bring their titles to Intel-based Macs, saying that Mac gamers can expect the release of these titles in the next few months. [updated]
Company of Heroes beta
An open beta of Company of Heroes is set to release later today on FilePlanet, Voodoo Extreme is reporting. Anyone with a free account will be able to sign up. The Relic RTS game is set in World War II and includes some interesting gameplay touches, such as destructible terrain and independent soldier AI that's aware of the terrain surrounding it. Relic is probably best known for its games in the Homeworld and Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War series.
Imation Sudoku drive
Since flash drives are virtually ubiquitous these days, manufacturers often have to cater to specific desires to escape obscurity. One of those desires is to play a favorite game away from home. Many of us have faced a situation in the past where we were at a campus terminal, a friend's house, or at work and wanted a quick game to get us through an idle phase. Imation clearly thought of this when it designed a newly released version of its Clip Flash Drive, which includes a copy of the still-popular Sudoku that can be run straight from the unit. It's also primed for students heading back to school with a carabiner to clip to their backpacks and a modest price of $35 for 512 MB. You can already find it in the US at your local Target store.
Bosco's Sensor Pouch
Hutchings Software has launched Bosco's Sensor Pouch, an accessory enabling runners to use the iPod+Nike Sport Kit accurately and securely with the shoes of their choice. The pouch is machine stitched from black or white fleece material, holding the sensor in place for accuracy while protecting it from the elements. A Velcro strap closes the pouch mouth and secures it to the shoe laces. Bosco's Sensor Pouch is priced at $6 including shipping, while Bosco's Sensor Pouch Deluxe is available for $10 with printed instructions and a storage tin.
North Carolina bill dies
A bill that would've prevented the sale of "obscene" or "violent" games to minors formally slipped into the abyss this week with the end of the current North Carolina legislative session. Proposed by State Senator Julia Boseman, the bill made headlines last year by rapidly advancing through second and third readings in the Senate. It later stalled in a House committee however, and then languished into 2006. Boseman says she does plan to revive the bill if she's re-elected this November.
Photoshop Action Pack v3
Ben Long has released Photoshop Action Pack v3, a collection of Automator Actions that allow users of Photoshop CS and CS2 to drive Photoshop from within Apple's Automator. Bundling a total of 85 separate actions, version 3 of the Action Pack now lets users process Camera Raw files from within their Automator workflows, allowing them to use Automator to drive their raw photography pipeline. Automator, part of Mac OS X 10.4, allows users to easily construct automation routines by simply dragging and dropping special Automator Actions together to create a workflow. The Photoshop Action Pack provides everything you need to control all of Photoshop's major functions from within Automator. Version 3 includes 11 new actions including Add Empty Adjustment Layer, Add Graphic Watermark, Channel Mixer, Duplicate Current Layer, Photo Filter, Resize to File Size, Exposure, and Reduce Noise. The Photoshop Action Pack is free.
Windows games on Mactels
Gamer Scan has an article about "Cider," a portability engine just released by TransGaming. The software promises to relieve developers of the delay usually associated with porting Windows games to the Mac. Where such ports normally require total code conversion, Cider should eliminate that by using a shell that wraps around an existing Windows code base. It operates by first loading the app into memory (on an Intel-based Mac), and from there connecting to an optimized set of Win32 APIs. No further work is necessary. TransGaming says it expects titles using Cider to ship within the next few months.
Geneious Pro 2.01
Biomatters has introduced Geneious Pro 2.01, a software solution that incorporates collaboration, sequence alignment editing and ClustalW to make bioinformatics easier for all scientists. Geneious is a self-organizing, automatically-updating library of genomic and genetic data that provides a fully integrated, visually-advanced toolset for sequence alignment and phylogenetics, sequence analysis, and BLAST protein structure viewing. Geneious Pro now adds the ability for users to collaborate and share data, offers manual sequence editing functions, enables annotation editing, features sequence alignment, allows new sequence creation, and brings chromatogram visualization. In addition, version 2.01 brings a revamped user interface, improved search and agents, a public API for third-party plugins, and support for additional commonly used import/export file formats. Geneious is free, while licensing for the Pro version starts at $133 per year ($40 for six-month student academic license).
Gears of War release date
Microsoft has revealed the promised "big announcement" for Gears of War this week, which turns out to be a release date: November 12th, 2006 in North America. A fourth-quarter release was already expected. This will probably disappoint some fans, because a viral marketing campaign on Xbox Live (featuring messages from characters in the game) seemed to be elaborate enough that there was hope of a demo or possibly a contest. The one truly new piece of information is that there will be two editions of the game: a standard edition for $60 US, and a "collector's" edition for $70, which will include an art book and a making-of DVD, sealed together with the game in a metal box. Update: Eurogamer is saying that the UK date will be November 17th.
Apple defends iTMS Norway
Apple in a letter to the Norway Consumer Council denies claims of acting illegally by restricting music purchased from its iTunes Music Store to only play on its own devices. Apple has said that its practice is "not unfair," but admitted that it should clarify its marketing situation, according to the Financial Times. "Our position is that this is a tool to lock consumers into their products," said Torgeir Waterhouse, a senior adviser to the Norwegian Consumer Council. "This is just the start of a long struggle. We are at the beginning of a booming digital market and if we don't win this one then we won't be able to achieve a fair marketplace."
modo 202 at Siggraph
Luxology this week debuted modo 202, an update to its 3D modeling, painting and rendering software. Boasting a peak rendering speed that is more than 40 percent faster than its previous version. Version 202 features streamlined workflow with improvements to the render window, including a convenient way to interactively adjust gamma display and a handy way to flip between 10 images for render review. It also offers enhancements to the modeling portion of its suite, including a new create SubDiv option for the popular Pen tool and a thicken tool for adding inner or outer thickness to geometry. In addition, a new object-to-object baking capability captures the surface detail of a complex object and automatically applies it to a simpler object for real-time applications. The application also improves 3D painting behavior, features a new visible image ink display model, adds the ability to see scene lights in Advanced OpenGL, and can interactively adjust the F-Stop, focal length and focal distance of cameras. modo 202 is priced at $900 with upgrades priced at $400 for registered users of any earlier version.
More Pixels Less Focus
HP recently released the Photosmart R967 point-and-shoot camera, which boasts a 10-megapixel sensor. To the stereotypical amateur camera buyer, that sounds like incredible quality for the money. After all, that's similar to more professional cameras such as the Nikon D200, which is well over a thousand dollars more even without a lens. However, with 7 or more megapixels so common on models like these, are we ignoring the underlying quality issues surrounding point-and-shoot cameras? Professional photographer Ken Rockwell has already argued against the importance of megapixels, since even cropping doesn't benefit as much from current megapixel counts. In the meantime, almost all compact cameras are still limited to 3X optical zoom and display visual artifacts such as purple fringing (the off-color "glow" you sometimes see around trees and other objects set against the sky). While optics aren't easy to fix in such small spaces, amateur photographers might appreciate the ability to keep more of the photos they take instead of more pixels to crop.
FCC Leaks Segways
Though it's not always apparent, the Segway HT isn't a single, all-encompassing model: the company tailors models for specific uses, whether it's police patrols or taking your golf clubs to the next hole. That's why new FCC documents are at once interesting and expected. The i2 (pictured) and x2 aren't dramatically different on the surface from what Segway offers already: the i2 is a general-purpose model useful for indoor and city environments (like the existing i180), while the x2 has chunky tires and a wide design meant for off-roading (as with the XT). The specs are also fairly similar, with the i2 still getting up to 24 miles on a charge and cruising up to 12.5 mph. Odds are that most of the real changes are subtle or undocumented. What the FCC documents can suggest is that Segway may be simplifying its lineup and eliminating niche models: naming schemes such as "i2" and "x2" leave little room for other variants like the p133 (a smaller, sidewalk-only model). See another photo from the FCC data after the jump.
25U XRackPro server rack
GizMac Accessories today announced it is accepting pre-orders on its new 25U XRackPro server rack cabinet. Joining the 4U and 12U XRackPro server rack enclosure cabinets, the company says the 25U XRackPro server rack will more than double the capacity of the of the largest currently available XRackPro server rack and will give new and existing customers a much needed solution to quiet larger amounts of noisy server rack mount equipment. "The pre-order for the new 25U XRackPro2 server rack cabinet begins today," says Ken Vitto, Director of Marketing for GizMac Accessories, "Our new 25U size noise reduction server rack enclosure cabinet will join GizMac's 4U and 12U XRack server rack enclosures in reducing noise pollution in the work environment." Pricing for the 25U XRackPro2 server rack mount cabinet is $2,200.
Ford GM Mazda Support iPod
For most people, iPod integration with cars is typically associated with either high-end marques (such as BMW or Mercedes-Benz) or else those targeted explicitly at hipsters, like Scion. Volume brands like Honda or Volkswagen have only recently begun making iPod hookups available. Today, however, Apple announced that three more major, mainstream car manufacturers - Ford, GM, and Mazda - will offer full iPod integration (including stereo control and power charging) in their US cars for the 2007 model year. This isn't simply for a token model or two: in the case of Mazda, integration will be available for the entire global market. GM in turn will offer an iPod option in its complete US lineup of 56 models.
Atomic Mac, StoneWorks
On The Job 2.2.1 ($25) is 'user friendly' time tracking software for managing time spend on tasks or clients and is designed for almost every profession -- from developers to lawyers to web designers. Version 2.2 adds support for tax to PDFs or text summaries, improved drop-down menu support, enhanced number rounding management, support for larger figures, and several minor bug fixes improving overall stability. Mac OS X 10.3.9 or later is required.
[Download - 1.0MB]
Missing Sync for Windows Mobile 2.5.1 ($40) gives users the ability to synchronize data on their Mac with PocketPC or smartphone devices using Windows Mobile from brands such as HP, Samsung, and Dell. The update brings improved USB speeds, better support for MS Entourage calendars, enhanced management of email address, and several minor bug fixes. The computer requires Mac OS X 10.4.7 or later along with iTunes 6, iPhoto 5, and Entourage 2004 11.2.4, and built-in Bluetooth for Bluetooth transfers. The device requires Windows Mobile 5 for Pocket PC or smartphone, Windows Mobile 2003, and Windows Mobile 2002. [Update - 42.7MB]
Atomic Mac 6.5 ($25) provides users with a periodic table of the elements and nuclear database covering each isotope for the Mac. Version 6.5 adds hardness data for Brinell, Mohs, and Vickers as well as correcting abundance in Universe view and Fahrenheit temperature in state view. Any version of Mac OS X will run Atomic Mac; there is also a 'Slassic' legacy version available for download. [Download - 3.4MB]
StoneWorks 2006-08-01 ($100) allows users to design Web and print items while handling digital photos, produce PDFs, and track client and personal bills. The update adds new widgets for Create, Videator, PStill and Slice ad dice alongside providing every StoneWorks app with Intel-based Mac support as a Universal Binary -- more notably including iMaginator, Videator, Create, as well as Slice and Dice. Mac OS X 10.3 or later is required. [Download - 59.4MB]
SoftRAID 3.5.1 ($130) is a software-based solution that can help create RAID volumes for either improved speeds or more redundancy. Unlike most RAID solutions, SoftRAID requires no hardware. Version 3.5.1 fixes a bug which involved APM formatted USB drives connected to Intel-based Macs as well as several minor bug fixes. Mac OS X 10.2 or later is required. [Download - 3.9MB]
Rockstar v. Play Pen
Cementing its reputation as perhaps one of the most frequently sued companies in history, Rockstar Games recently found itself on the end of a lawsuit from E.S.S. Entertainment, owners of a Los Angeles strip club called The Play Pen. E.S.S. was alleging that a mock version of the club in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, named The Pig Pen, was an infringement of their trademark. Indeed, the awnings, logos and "totally nude" phrasings in front of each club are similar. But US District Court Judge Margaret Morrow ruled in favour of Rockstar last week, saying that "Any visual work that seeks to offer an artistic commentary on a particular subject must use identifiable features of that subject so that the commentary will be understood and appreciated by the consumer." Moreover, she did not think consumers could be so easily misled by The Pig Pen.
Ford, GM, Mazda, Apple
Apple has announced that it has teamed up with Ford, General Motors, and Mazda to bring 'seamless' iPod integration into the majority of their cars, reports Leftlane News. Apple says that more than 70 percent of 2007-model year automobiles sold in the US will offer iPod integration to buyers. Greg Joswiak, Apple’s vice president of Worldwide iPod Product Marketing stated that he was delighted with this deal and that, “Now more than 70 percent of 2007-model year automobiles in the US will offer iPod integration, with General Motors alone making it available on all 56 of its models, representing millions of cars and trucks.” Ford and GM will boast iPod connectivity on the majority of their lines in the United States 2007 model year vehicles, while Mazda will bring iPod connectivity to all their 2007 vehicles across the globe. The systems will offer iPod charging, improved sound quality, and convenient iPod storage. iPod integration will give the driver full control over the iPod through the stereo controls included with the car.
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