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News Archive for 07/02/20

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Forums: OS X stablility, RAM, AppleTV

02/20, 8:00pm

Forums Feb 20

Forums roundup: Members are discussing the reports from one Mac switcher questioning the stability of OS X, after experiencing several freezes and crashes.... Other users are sharing experiences and problems when installing a second optical drive in a Mac Pro.... One user has asked for help choosing RAM for his MacBook, wondering what brand is best..... Other members are discussing the rant of one Mac user who is fed up with authentication requests by OS X.... Meanwhile, other members are discussing whether or not the AppleTV falls to the Mac Mini in terms quality and variety of streaming methods.

Griffin debuts spring iPod case collection

02/20, 6:35pm

Griffing spring collection

Griffin has announced its spring collection of iPod cases to prepare for the change in seasons. The company's Reflect (shown at right) and Centerstage case both feature tinted polycarbonate shells, with the former being reflective and the latter coming with a built-in aluminum stand. The iClear Photo enables users to insert custom artwork into the back, while the California Roll stores earbuds as well as other accessories in a single design. The Trio Plus includes an optional Spring Colors pack, and all of the new cases are already shipping. Griffin's Reflect case is priced at $25 alongside its Centerstage model, while the company's iClear Photo case is available for $20 or $25 fitting an iPod nano or video iPod, respectively. The Trio Plus case for iPod nano is available for $30, and the California Roll is priced at $20. [updated, images]

H-Squared ships Mini Shelf, Air Mount, more

02/20, 6:10pm

Mini Shelf, Air Mount ship

H-Squared today unveiled a revised Mini mount, a new Mini Shelf, and an Air Mount (shown at right) for Apple's latest AirPort Extreme 802.11n base station. The revised Mini mount serves as an improved wall mount for Apple's smallest desktop system, offering a lower-profile stop that is entirely hidden when mounted. The new mount also adds VESA mounting holes in both 75mm and 100mm configurations while retaining the older mounting holes. The company's new Mini Shelf is designed to stow a Mac mini system while deterring theft and maintaining full access to every and optical drive. H-Squared's Mini Shelf locks the Mac mini in place with a small "bar" that slides through the rear of the mount, and is stackable with other H-Squared units. The Air Mount is specifically made for Apple's AirPort Extreme base station for mounting both horizontally and vertically. H-Squared's revised Mini mount, Mini Shelf, and Air Mount are each priced at $40 each, or $55 with backlighting. [updated, images]

Apps: SuperCard; TypeFitter; Yojimbo

02/20, 5:25pm

SuperCard; TypeFitter

    SuperCard 4.6.2 ($180) is an easy-to-use developer tool to create games, utilities, and teaching tools. While v4.6.2 is mostly a maintenance release, it also introduces a variety of code commands, both for SuperTalk and external additions. The program is a Universal Binary that requires Mac OS X 10.3.9 to run, though 10.4.3 or later is recommended. [Download - 14.1MB]
    TypeFitter (free) manipulates text in Adobe InCopy or InDesign to produce better results than just adjusting scaling or tracking. Users can tighten, loosen or restore text, and automatically find widows and oversets. TypeFitter for InCopy is now a free plug-in, having previously cost $60. The InDesign version is still a paid product. [Download - Size Unknown]
    Yojimbo 1.4.1 ($40) stores and organizes a variety of personal information, from notes and passwords to PDFs, serial numbers, and web archives. The v1.4.1 update is devoted exclusively to fixes, such as for crashes when viewing web archives, and when synching the program with outside sources. Yojimbo is a Universal Binary for Mac OS X 10.4.3. [Download - 10.1MB]
    WriteRoom 2.1 ($25) promises a full-screen, "distraction-free" environment for serious writing. Everything but text and the most essential control items are present on-screen. Version 2.1 displays a word count for currently selected text, and lets users adjust the scroll line position in the "typewriter scrolling" mode. Cursor positions and typing attributes are also better adjusted when switching views. [Download - 908KB]
    World Clock Deluxe 4.4.5 ($16) displays multiple times in the Dock, the menu bar or in a palette, and can also fetch current weather data for any location. The latest release adds 65 more cities from around the world, and reflects the Bahamas' changes to DST rules. Further, the position of menu bar items can be customized by the user. [Download - 1.7MB]
    Hangman Bible 1.0.5 ($15) is, despite its name, a game themed around Islam, Judaism and Christianity. Word topics include Apostles, Jewish Months, and Prophets in the Koran. Version 1.0.5 does not actually make any changes to the software, but instead reflects price drops for individual, site and district licenses. [Download - 986KB]

Virtualization: key to Apple in enterprise

02/20, 5:25pm

Virtualization and Apple

Apple is trying to extend its reach into the enterprise market, and allowing users to run multiple 'virtualized' copies of Mac OS X on its own hardware will further its efforts, according to one report. Apple currently provides Intel Mac owners with a means to dual boot various operating systems -- such as Microsoft Windows -- via its Boot Camp beta software, and plans to integrate third-party operating system support in its forthcoming Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard update. Enterprise customers are easier to manage, partition, create, modify, and maintain when compared to separate physical machines. That fact suggests that big business may soon adopt smaller numbers of much larger servers running multiple virtualized operating systems, rather than numerous individual servers linked together. Computerworld suggests that pressure will quickly build for the Cupertino-based company to support virtualization software capable of running multiple copies of Mac OS X on Mac systems.

Sharp unveils all-in-one 7.1 theater with Blu-Ray

02/20, 5:15pm

Sharp Blu-Ray Home Theater

Sharp complemented today's launch of its new AQUOS sets by introducing a new, high-end home theater. In contrast to most all-in-one kits, the BD-MPC70 is built to give avid movie fans every component needed beyond the TV itself. At the core is a hybrid Blu-Ray player and 1-bit digital amplifier: the single device both plays the next-generation discs at their native 1080p when linked through HDMI and powers any sound system linked through either the dual analog or digital outputs.

The speakers bundled with the MPC70 are also designed to transcend other pack-ins, Sharp claims. A full 7.1-channel system puts out 175W of power, enough to drive the surround sound in any movie. The Japanese electronics maker will ship the entire assembly after its AQUOS sets arrive, delivering the combo for $8,339 on June 25th. Its North American counterpart is possible but remains unofficial.

GPS tracker promises speed, headings on windshields

02/20, 4:25pm

GlobalTop GPS HUD

GlobalTop plans to make its presence felt at next month's CeBIT expo by revealing the GPS HUD Speed Meter, a different approach to using GPS. The gumstick-sized adapter is designed chiefly to reduce the dangers of looking away from road to check vital information. Speed, headings, and other vital information about the car's progress are displayed on the windscreen instead of a separate display, keeping the driver's eyes fixed ahead. Onboard Bluetooth also sets up the Speed Meter as an impromptu GPS receiver, pairing wirelessly with a cellphone or other GPS devices to bring live mapping to handhelds with the right software.

Full details should be available by the time the device is unveiled at CeBIT. Exact launch plans are unknown but are likely to be handled through third-party companies that ship the GlobalTop's device under their own names. [via]

Shafetech intros Ubuntu notebooks

02/20, 3:45pm

Shafetech Ubuntu PCs

A young startup named Shafetech has launched its first full line of computers, ranging from desktops to notebooks. The company claims that its systems distance themselves from others by shipping preloaded with Ubuntu Linux 6, providing easy access to the open-source OS without the often difficult barrier of installing software or drivers. Systems are relatively expensive and include the Echo ($849), a 15.4-inch widescreen notebook with a base 1.46GHz Celeron M, 60GB hard disk and DVD/CD-RW drive; the system can be custom-configured with up to a 2GHz Core 2 Duo, a 100GB hard disk and a DVD rewriter. Desktops, in turn, begin with the $299 Apollo, driven by a 2.66GHz Celeron D and an 80GB hard drive. A 17-inch desktop replacement notebook and desktops based on the Core 2 Duo and Athlon 64 X2 are also available.

Every system with a Core 2 Duo or Athlon 64 X2 system can be configured with a 64-bit version of Ubuntu to take advantage of their more advanced instruction sets. Systems also ship with a full year's warranty despite the relatively uncommon OS, the firm says. All six of its systems are available today. [via Digg, pricing may be suspect]

Apple: the 'worst nightmare' for CE industry

02/20, 3:35pm

Apple scares CE industry

Apple is the worst nightmare of consumer electronics (CE) manufacturers, according to, as the Cupertino-based company repeats its 'slow-wind-up' attack seen during the digital music revolution on cellular phones and TVs. With the release of the Apple TV and the forthcoming release of the much anticipated iPhone, Apple stands to seize market share from CE companies while expanding its reach into consumers' living rooms, according to the report. Apple successfully dominated the digital music arena, despite widespread criticism from skeptics, and its Mac OS X-based iPhone may seriously harm the manufacturers of other consumer-oriented devices when it ships in June.

Jabra dips into speakers for phones, iPods

02/20, 3:05pm

Jabra J5010 Speakers

Venturing away from its familiar territory of headsets, Jabra has revealed its first dedicated speaker system. Named the J5010, the system has been co-developed by Klipsch to play music from just about any portable music device: in addition to the typical 3.5mm headphone jack, Jabra's speakers have connections for both 2.5mm and mini-USB plugs -- ensuring that almost any cellphone can play its music from the 30-watt stereo. A source selector means that the two devices can hook into the speakers at once, Jabra and Klipsch say. A cradle keeps an attached device readily in sight while it plays.

Jabra hopes to ship the J5010 before the end of March for $149. [via Music Gizmos]

BBC: Mac users still 'lax' on security

02/20, 3:00pm

Mac users lax on security

Mac OS X users are still slacking on security measures but Apple itself is warming up to improving its stance on security, according to independent researcher Kevin Finisterre -- one of two researchers to produce the Month of Apple Bugs (MoAB) website. Finisterre and another, anonymous researcher released one bug in Apple's operating system or its bundled applications each day for an entire month, which spurred security updates from Apple in Cupertino as the company worked to repair the flaws. Finisterre says Apple's own attitude toward security was one of the primary reasons he and the anonymous security pro began the Month of Apple Bugs project. "Try calling any Apple store and ask any sales rep what you would do with regard to security, ask if there is anything you should have to worry about?" Finisterre said. "They will happily reinforce the feeling of 'Security on a Mac? What? Me worry?'."

Magellan to release three new GPS units in April?

02/20, 2:40pm

New Magellan GPS units?

Retailer TigerGPS appears to have accidentally announced three new navigation products by Magellan. Forming a new Maestro line, all three have 4.3-inch, WQVGA (432x240) touchscreens, and other features such as SiRFStar III receivers and turn-by-turn voice direction. The base model is the 4000; the 4040 adds Bluetooth, text-to-speech and better NAVTEQ maps, as well as optional traffic data. The top of the line is the 4050, which bundles the traffic kit, and further introduces voice recognition. The systems should ship in April for $370, $470 and $650 respectively. [via GPS Gazette]

Viacom brings movies, shows to Joost

02/20, 2:30pm

Viacom on Joost

Viacom today announced a breakthrough deal for Joost, the peer-to-peer TV service developed by the team responsible for Kazaa and Skype. The new development will see some of Viacom's better-known videos make their way to the currently free Internet service, including shows from BET and MTV as well as complete movies from Paramount. The deal was made possible by the inherent nature of the system, which is ad-supported and stores no permanent copies on a viewer's drive. The terms of the deal weren't revealed by either company, but the transaction is just one of multiple high-profile contracts coming in the next few weeks, a Joost spokesman said. The deal is the first Viacom has reached for freely available videos on the Internet since the firm failed to land a deal with YouTube and subsequently had over 100,000 copyrighted clips pulled from the website.

Joost is currently running an invitation-only beta which began in January for Windows users and should be complete later this year. A Mac version of the beta appeared on Sunday.

Jobs, Gates to take stage at WSJ's D5 in May

02/20, 2:25pm

Jobs, Gates at D5 in May

Apple CEO Steve Jobs and Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates will make a rare joint appearance at The Wall Street Journal's "D: All Things Digital" conference this May. The two seminal figures in the development of the personal computer will jointly discuss the history and future of the digital revolution in an unrehearsed, unscripted, onstage conversation on May 30 with D co-producers Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher. Both executives have made multiple individual appearances at the conference, which will celebrate its fifth anniversary this year (and thus called 'D5'); however, this will be their first joint session at D, and a "highly unusual event," according to the WSJ press release.

Briefly: SMS widget; Warner to buy EMI?

02/20, 2:05pm

Warner to buy EMI?

In brief: today released a free text messaging dashboard widget for Mac OS X, record label EMI confirmed that it was approached for a possible takeover by Warner Music Group, Google has conducted a study on the frailty of hard drives exposed to high temperatures, and Lexar kicked off its releases in advance of PMA 2007 by delivering a pair of updates to its card readers for pro photographers....'s new widget enables users to send free text messages directly from the desktop, and supports receiving replies to text messages via email. The widget follows callwave's recent release of an iPhone-like voicemail system for Mac users, and provides similar functionality to that company's free text message widget for Mac OS X, Yahoo, and Google (Gadget).

Cylo 3style jogwheel mouse

02/20, 1:55pm

Cylo 3style jogwheel mouse

Australian company Cylo's new mouse is the 3style, designed for those who need an extra axis of movement control. It can be used as a traditional two-axis mouse, but the jogwheel on top can rapidly scroll through a third, whether it be the progress bar in a video editor or the Z axis in a 3D renderer. The wheel can also be set to adjust any object under the cursor, such as a knob in a software mixing console. To left-click users push down on the wheel, whereas right-clicks are done with a squeeze, and the middle-click button is the wheel's dimple. A fourth control, the "orientate" button, can be used to set the Y axis in whatever direction a user wants. Cylo has just finished developing the 3style, so prices and release dates have yet to be established.

Century intros swim-proof MP3 player

02/20, 1:35pm

Century Dolphin MP3 Player

Japan's Century has just revealed the Dolphin, a portable jukebox crafted specifically for wet environments. The aluminum body and the in-canal earbuds alike are completely immersible up to 3.3 feet, allowing most swimmers at the beach or pool to listen to music underwater. The player is also handy for skiiers and any exercise in rain or snow, Century is keen to point out. An elastic band mount will keep the tube-like base unit attached to a swimming cap or a snowboarder's goggles, where it can run for up to 8 hours on a full charge.

A single model exists with 1GB of flash storage for MP3 or WMA songs transferred from Macs and Windows PCs, and currently ships in Japan for $107. [via Far East Gizmos]

The Iconfactory launches Frenzic

02/20, 1:30pm

Frenzic game for Mac OS X

The Iconfactory and ARTIS Software have released an all-new, fast paced, addictive game for Mac OS X. In the spirit of classic puzzle games such as Tetris and Bejeweled, Frenzic tests both the mind and the reflexes, offering a unique style and game play, which the companies claim, "dazzles the eye, teases the brain and keeps you coming back for more. It takes only minutes to learn, but months to master as you devise new, impressive play strategies to push yourself to the top of the Internet Leaderboards. Complete against your personal best, or other players testing their mettle around the globe. View stats, devise winning strategies, track friends and climb through seven levels of Devotion from Newbie all the way to the one, and only, Frenzic Grandmaster." The website offers the game download as well as Leaderboards, current player stats and more. Frenzic is available for $15.

New webcams from Maxell

02/20, 12:50pm

New webcams from Maxell

The Japanese division of Maxell is about to launch three new webcams, the first from the company to be certified for Windows Vista. At the low end are the PM8 and PM9, which are fairly standard 0.3 megapixel (640x480) models, except that the 9 (pictured) has an unusual "neck" which lets it swing out wide from its resting place. The high-end PM10 sits at the top of a monitor, as with most webcams, but is graced with a 1.3-megapixel CMOS sensor and has autofocus capabilities. The cameras should be out in Japan tomorrow at an "open" price, dictated by retailers.

Apps: MediaDex, Maintenance, ClamXav

02/20, 12:50pm

MediaDex, Maintenance

    MediaDex 2.0 (Standard $50, Professional $80) serves as a central media repository enabling users to efficiently organize and reuse most types of digital media files. The software supports organizing media using categories as well as collections, supporting custom organizational structures as complex or as simple as desired. Search functionality speeds the retrieval of media, and sharing functionality allows users to publish photos to the Web or create custom slide shows. [Download - 54.4MB]
    Maintenance 1.1 (donationware) is a system maintenance and cleaning utility for Mac OS X that runs miscellaneous tasks to repair permissions, run periodic scripts, reset Spotlight's Index, rebuild the LaunchServices database, and more. The update improves verification of the S.M.A.R.T status, verifies the start volume at launch, removes the font cache of Microsoft Office X, and modifies error messages while improving help content. [Download - 1.5MB]
    ClamXav 1.0.7 (free) is a virus checker for Mac OS X that uses the time-tested ClamAV open-source antivirus engine as its back end. The latest release runs natively on Intel-based Macs as a Universal Binary. ClamXav is available in Chinese, Danish, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, and Taiwanese. [Download - 26.7MB]
    DashRender 1.1 ($15) is a dashboard widget that renders Alias/Autodesk Maya scene files on Mac OS X 10.4 or later systems. Users drag-and-drop scene files onto the widget and click render to watch it progress. The widget features a simple interface to avoid fumbling in the terminal when trying to begin a render job, and the widget can notify users via email when renders are complete or when an error occurs. [Download - [login required]]
    TrashCache 1.4 ($20) is a trash management utility that automatically deletes files after they've been in the trash for a specified period of time. The software also doesn't allow users to delete files prematurely, instead removing the files on a set schedule. The latest revision runs natively on Intel-based Macs as a Universal Binary, and improves application stability. [Download - 8MB]
    Cineon/DPX PRO 2.0.7 ($90) updates the QuickTime components for Mac OS X with improved Spotlight plug-ins to extract more information from DPX files. Spotlight plug-ins can extract S.two specific metadata from DPX frames created by the S.two Digital Film Recorder, and the update includes multiple bug fixes. The software also improves 64-bit sized movie loading, as well as multi-frame rate support. [Download - 2.6MB]

LG ships 17-inch notebook with digital TV tuning

02/20, 12:15pm

LG W1PRO Digital TV Laptop

LG boosted its W1 notebook PC line today by unveiling the W1PRO DUAL. The 17-inch portable is one of the few outside of Asia to support digital TV tuning and will pick up HD over-the-air broadcasts in DVB-T form -- including the 5.1 Dolby Surround audio on certain channels. The use of Vista Home Premium automatically transforms the desktop replacement into a personal video recorder for capturing favorite shows.

Performance is strong to match, with either a 1.83GHz or 2GHz Core 2 Duo for a processor and a 256MB Mobility Radeon X1600 onboard for accelerating 3D and movies at the system's native 1680x1050. Weight is also less of a concern at a manageable 6.8 pounds, LG notes. The new leader of LG's notebooks will be available soon in Australia for $2,600 US and should make its way to other regions that support DVB-T soon. [via Gizmag]

DRM at stake with possible EMI takeover by Warner

02/20, 12:10pm

Possible EMI takeover?

Record label EMI confirmed today that it has been approached for a possible takeover by the Warner Music Group, a move which could have serious ramifications for the future of digital rights management (DRM). While Warner has vehemently opposed the easing of DRM, recently proposed by Apple CEO Steve Jobs, sources have suggested that EMI might be the first major label to let third-party sites sell its music without any DRM whatsoever. An acquisition by Warner could effectively quash any such effort. According to the Associated Press however, such concerns may be premature: an EMI statement reads that there is "no proposal currently for the EMI board consider," and likewise, a merger between the music groups of Sony and Bertelsmann was recently blocked by the European Court. The Court might well oppose a Warner-EMI merger due to monopoly concerns, since the combined company would control 25 percent of the worldwide market.

LG preps 3G Shine with HSDPA broadband, front cam

02/20, 11:35am

LG Shine 3G Wireless

LG is working on an updated version of its distinctive Shine slider, according to Czech site iDNES. Called the KE970, the updated version will boost the all-metal phone's Internet access to support HSDPA for connecting as quickly as 3.6Mbps. A VGA camera will also be hidden inside the display bezel to enable video calls on these faster networks. Other changes will be slight but should involve 512MB of onboard storage to help store music and video without resorting to microSD cards.

The 3G wireless edition of the Shine is expected to reach Europe by the second half of this year. LG hasn't indicated whether or not it will bring a GSM version of the Shine to the US, though the standard 2G version is more likely.

Wowza Media Server serves Flash files

02/20, 11:25am

Wowza Media Server

Wowza Media Systems today released Wowza Media Server, its high-performance alternative to Adobe Flash Media Server that enables the company says offers significant improvements in Flash streaming economics. The Wowza Media Server utilizes a 64-bit architecture to enable Flash applications as well as content, including video on demand, live video distribution, video recoding, and chat. The software is designed to accommodate a wide range of uses, offering support for most major operating system platforms including Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, UNIX, and Linux. The server includes TiVo-like fast-forward and rewind capability that enables viewers to easily navigate pre-recorded video content, and offers unlimited connection support, according to the company. The four Wowza Media Server Pro editions are available to supplement 10 connections (free), 50 connections ($750), 150 connections ($2,250), and "unlimited" connections ($5,000).

AnyDATA launches 'fastest' wireless USB modem

02/20, 11:20am


A new wireless USB modem from AnyDATA is claimed to be the "smallest and fastest" in the world. The ADU-610 taps into UMTS and HSDPA phone networks, delivering 3G download speeds as high as 7.2Mbps, which is often faster than local cable service. Where networks are mired at 2.5G, speeds scale back to a more conventional 384Kbps. The size of the modem meanwhile is small enough to fit on a keychain, coming in at 3.7 inches long and 0.4 inches thick. Other advantages to the 610 include support for 900 and 1,800MHz GSM networks, and an internal antenna and battery. The product is currently being sold in Korea through a national phone carrier, but should eventually ship overseas.

Lexar tackles ultra-fast CF, SDHC cards with readers

02/20, 11:10am

Lexar Ultra-Fast Readers

Lexar kicked off its releases in advance of PMA 2007 today by delivering a pair updates to its card readers for pro photographers. Completely new is the Professional UDMA FireWire 800 Reader (pictured), the company's first reader to support Ultra Direct Memory Access CompactFlash cards. The new 300X CF standard reduces the memory latency to create an exceptional boost in performance: Lexar claims a minimum 45MB per second write speed and transfer times cut in half compared to the previous 133X ceiling. The reader is stackable for multiple simultaneous transfers and depends on a faster FireWire 800 port for its connections. It should be available in April for $80.

A dual-slot reader and photos are available after the break.

mProjector 3 embeds Web content

02/20, 11:00am

mProjector 3 released

Screentime Media today unveiled mProjector 3 for Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows, easing the process of using Adobe Flash to create organically shaped standalone widgets and applications for both operating systems. mProjector 3 adds alpha channel window drawing, the ability to embed Web content, seven new ActionScript classes, and more than 100 cross-platform functions directly into the Flash IDE. The software enables users to create applications with smooth anti-aliased "Flash shaped" windows, and includes synchronous window-to-window communications from ActionScript as well as custom document handling and improved language/http/xml support. mProjector 3 is priced at $100 for one operating system or $300 for both Mac OS X and Windows development. The upgrade is free for registered users, and requires Mac OS X 10.2.8 and up or Windows 98 or newer.

Verizon adopts Treo 700wx

02/20, 10:30am

Verizon adopts Treo 700wx

Verizon has begun selling the Treo 700wx, the second American carrier to do so after Alltel. The key upgrade to the wx over the w is RAM, which doubles from 32 to 64MB. The phone in general is well-appointed, with a 240x240 touchscreen, a 1.3-megapixel camera, and Bluetooth support that includes stereo headsets. An SD slot supports cards up to 2GB in size, which can be used to run music, photos and video. Under Verizon's pricing plan, the wx costs $400 with a two-year contract and a $100 online discount.

Sonnet to ship MacCuff Pro security bracket

02/20, 10:25am

Sonnet to ship MacCuff Pro

Sonnet Technologies has unveiled MacCuff Pro, an under-desk mounting and security bracket for Apple's Mac Pro and Power Mac G5 computers. MacCuff Pro enables users to hang a computer under a desk or table and secure it with an included steel cable while managing system cabling. The MacCuff Pro bracket is constructed from heavy-gauge steel and boasts a refined platinum finish with a durable plastic coating that won't mar the Mac's finish. The steel security cable is also vinyl coated to prevent scratching, and installation consists of drilling through a template and attaching the bracket using several supplied screws. Users can hang the Mac up off the floor to protect it from excess dirt as well as vacuum strikes, and route cabling through a strain-relief slot. MacCuff Pro will ship on February 23rd for $130.

Sharp unleashes seventeen AQUOS LCD sets

02/20, 10:15am

Sharp AQUOS Spring 2007

Sharp on Tuesday released an almost unprecedented seventeen LCD TVs in anticipation of Spring. A full dozen of these occupy the company's AQUOS D line and are highlighted by the LC-32DS1 line (shown), one of the first-ever 32-inch LCDs with a 1080p screen for native playback of HD movies or the latest consoles. Design also takes center stage, according to Sharp: black, white, and a new red tint help match the sets to their chosen environments. These and the 720p LC-32DS10 sets will each have digital TV tuners, dual HDMI inputs, and a 2,000:1 static contrast ratio. Sharp hopes to deliver the D10 first, shipping it to Japan by March 10th along with similarly-equipped 26-inch and 20-inch models. The DS1 will appear on May 10th. Most if not all models are expected in North America.

Read on for details and a photo of the flagship AQUOS R series.

Briefly: Apple store in FL, 802.11n MacBook

02/20, 10:00am

Apple's 11th store in FL

Briefly: Apple today announced that it is opening its 11th store in Florida, while an enterprising group of Mac enthusiasts have shown how to add 802.11n to first-generation MacBooks and Gideon updated its five-application software bundle.... The Cupertino-based company announced that the grand opening of its newest retail outlet will take place on Saturday, February 24th at 10:00 a.m. The Apple Store Coconut Point will is located at 23151 Fashion Drive in Estero (Florida). As usual, the company will offer the first 1000 people to visit a free Apple t-shirt and is offering all users a chance to enter the Grand Opening Sweepstakes -- to win a Digital Lifestyle Collection valued at over $2,500. The company opened its ninth Apple Store in the UK in the Bentall Centre in Kingston, Surrey on Saturday, February 17th and is hiring for its upcoming store in Sydney, Australia.

Mono offers VB cross-platform capability

02/20, 9:55am

Mono, Visual Basic

The Mono project today announced that it has developed a compiler that will enable software developers who use Microsoft Visual Basic to run applications across multiple platforms without any modifications to the code. The new Mono Visual Basic compiler allows developers to continue to code in their preferred Visual Basic/Visual Studio environment, compiling and running that same code base on a variety of operating systems including Windows, Linux, and Mac OS. The Mono project's new compiler resembles REAL Software's REALbasic integrated development environment, which has enabled Mac developers to cross-compile on Microsoft Windows and Linux alongside Mac OS PowerPC and Mac OS X for several years. The Mono Visual Studio compiler is as part of the current Mono build. The software requires Linux or Microsoft Windows 2000 or later.

Life Fitness to offer iPod integration

02/20, 9:30am

Life Fitness syncs w/iPod

Life Fitness today announced that it would include seamless iPod integration it its commercial exercise equipment, allowing iPod users to plug in and charge their iPods, watch video on the equipment's large LCD screen and control the playing of their iPod music libraries from the console. The first Life Fitness product featuring iPod integration will be demonstrated at the upcoming IHRSA Convention in San Francisco and will be available in March with the rest of the line to follow later in the year. The iPod-integration will allow exercisers to sync their iPods with the equipment's LCD screen to conveniently view playlists and enjoy video content while working out.

AMD rolls out low-power Athlon 64s, X2 6000+

02/20, 9:25am

AMD Low-Power A64

AMD this morning updated its Athlon 64 with chips at both the high and low ends of the spectrum. Most signficant, says the company, are its new low-power, single-core Athlon 64 3500+ and 3800+ chips. These are the first-ever AMD chips to be made on a 65-nanometer process and consume only 45W of power on average, lower still than Intel's Core 2 Duo desktop models. The reduced power not only saves money, but also lets the CPU fit into small form factor PCs without noisy cooling fans. AMD is already shipping either model at prices of $88 and $93 in bulk.

Timberlake sells 50,000 videos via iTunes

02/20, 9:15am

50K videos via iTunes

Jive Records' Justin Timberlake, the first major recording artist to debut a new video solely on the iTunes Store, continues to shatter records and set new standards, according to a company press release: the pop artist premiered his video "What Goes Around ... Comes Around" on Friday, February 9th and sold over 50,000 videos during the first four days on iTunes. The company said that sales still continue at a record breaking pace, although did not provide details. The full length Directors Cut video, which features Scarlett Johannson and Shawn Hatosy, was directed by Sam Bayer, who has worked with Metallica, Smashing Pumpkins, David Bowie, Aerosmith and on Green Day's "Boulevard of Broken Dreams."

Nikon launches 8 new Coolpix cameras

02/20, 9:05am

New Nikon Coolpix cameras

Nikon on Tuesday commemorated both the 10th anniversary of its Coolpix line with launch of eight new cameras just before the upcoming PMA expo: the new 10-megapixel P5000 (pictured) is a bridge between point-and-shoots and entry-level digital SLRs, offering a larger fixed lens through a 3.5X optical zoom and a hotshoe for an external flash and converter attachments for either telephoto or wide-angle shots as well as optical stabilization and a special 5-megapixel, ISO 3200 shooting mode for active or low-light scenes. The company also launched four new models for the S-series: the S50 and S50c share a 7.2-megapixel sensor and optical image stabilization, as well as a full-resolution ISO 1600 mode, a 3-inch LCD and 3X zoom, while the S500 and S200 also feature 7+-megapixel resolution with 3X zoom, but include a smaller 2.5-inch LCD and "virtual" image stabilization (rather than optical).

Nikon revamps Coolpix line on tenth anniversary

02/20, 8:55am

Nikon Coolpix PMA 2007

Nikon today commemorated both the 10th anniversary of its Coolpix line and the upcoming PMA expo with a major update to its mainstream cameras. At the peak is the P5000 (pictured), a bridge between point-and-shoots and entry-level digital SLRs. The 10-megapixel camera benefits from its larger fixed lens through a 3.5X optical zoom; Nikon has also catered to more serious photographers by adding a hotshoe for an external flash and converter attachments for either telephoto or wide-angle shots. Optical stabilization and a special 5-megapixel, ISO 3200 shooting mode are there to help take better photos in active or low-light scenes, Nikon says. The P5000 supports SDHC cards for storage larger than 2GB and ships in March for $400.

Details and photos of the rest of the updates follow after the jump.


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