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EEAO 1.1 update for email
Softhing this week unveiled the Entourage Exchange Accounts Optimizer 1.1, an update to its application designed to optimize Exchange servers by defining a maximum amount of time a user wishes for mail to remain on the server. The update is free for existing users, adding several internal improvements, Exchange account definitions, a 10 minute timeout, and compatibility with Entourage 12.0.1 and Mac OS X 10.5.2 Leopard. EEAO v1.1 is available for $15.
Ruling disappoints Dish
In response to the ruling against the Dish Network, the company writes that it is disappointed with the court's rejection for an appeal, but that it will not affect current or future customers. According to the note, EchoStar has already developed and deployed a new version of the DVR software to customers as an automatic download. Dish claims the new software does not infringe on patents held by Tivo Inc.
Samsung full-frame DSLR
Samsung has given indications that it will release a full-frame CMOS-based digital SLR camera, targeted towards professional users. The alleged camera is currently in the design stage, so a solid release schedule is not currently available. Amateur Photographer technical writer Barney Britton attended an industry event in Seoul where Kyong-Kook Shin, assistant manager for Samsung's digital camera marketing division said photographers could look forward to a full-frame DSLR with a Pentax lens mount in the future.
New Keynote themes
In brief: There is a stark pricing discrepancy for Australian iPods, iPresentee themes for Keynote have debuted, Sonnet has cut prices on its Fusion line of SATA devices, Aspyr has updated its Game Agent and a Middle East Mac newsletter is now one year old ... There are some substantial differences in iPod pricing between the US and Australia. With the Aussie dollar at 0.92 US, you might expect US and Aussie prices for iPods to be relatively similar, but this is not the case. The 1GB iPod Shuffle: USD$49 = AUD$54 exchange, selling for AUD$65. The 8GB nano USD$199 == AUD$221 exchange, selling for AUD$279. The 16GB iPod classic USD$349 == AUD$387 exchange, selling for AUD$479.
WireTap Studio 1.0.6 ($70) audio recording and management solution. Record the discrete audio output of any application, as well as all Mac system audio, or record audio input from any microphone, line-in, or audio input hardware. The new release includes these enhancements: fixed fade-ins; fixed a crash when loading a waveform that was previously partially loaded; fixed some problems with effects and mono output formats. [Download - 25.6MB]
MimMac 1.9 ($10) updates the cloning, backup, and file synchronization utility. Version 1.9 adds full Leopard compatibility, as well as many internal changes to retain Tiger and Panther support. MimMac is a Universal Binary application, and requires Mac OS X 10.3.9 or later. [Download - 1MB]
MassTransit 5.1.1 enterprise file transfer tool. The new version includes nearly two dozen new features. It also has nearly 30 bug fixes. This version now writes details about the DBMS to the MassTransit log to make it easier to provide information to Group Logic Technical support. It also contains a new feature whereby the MassTransit Engine can be configured, using the debugLog.cfg file, to log MySQL settings and status variables to syslog. [Download - form]
DiscLabel 5.2 ($36) CD/DVD label design software for Mac OS X. It can import track lists from iTunes, iPhoto, iDVD, Finder, and Toast; import images from iTunes, iPhoto, iDVD and Finder; multiple layers, drawing tools and gradients for creating custom designs; use more than 1300 clip art files via the DiscLabel Clip Art Browser and more. The update features improvements to image importing, including support for iPhoto Events and faster image library loading. Printing designs has been made easier, with simplified initial access to printing setup and a new media search capability. [Download - 12.6MB]
Cumulus 7.5.3 digital asset management system. Improves performance and reliability. Canto recommends all customers upgrade to Cumulus 7.5.3, regardless of operating system, to benefit from global fixes and improvements. Customers on active service agreements can download the update free of charge. [Download - form]
FarFinder downloads files
Flying Mac today unveiled FarFinder, a remote file access for the Mac that allows users to browse and retrieve their files from their Mac using a standard web browser. In addition to working on a desktop or laptop computer, FarFinder can also be used through Safari on the iPhone and iPod touch. Since files can't really be downloaded to the iPhone, FarFinder will email the file to a desired address. FarFinder is currently available at a special price of $20.
MacGameStore has released a series of new games for the Mac OS X. In the first, Burger Shop, the gamer builds a food-making contraption and opens a restaurant. "Your goal? To make food and satisfy customers while you explore the truth behind the mysterious mailing. Utilize unique food-making devices to make over 50 yummy food items during your quest." The game features 4 play modes, 80 levels, 96 trophies to collect and over 60 upgrade choices. The game is priced at $20.
Nokia Backing From WebKit
Nokia may be withdrawing its efforts to actively contribute to the WebKit browser engine, according to an exchange on the official developer list. After noticing that the Finnish cellphone producer had been inactive for at least eight months in developing a version of the code for Symbian Series 60 phones, contributor Eric Seidel has been told by Nokia representative Bradley Morrison only that the company is closing off discussions of any outstanding bugs rather than fixing or improving code.
Mac, iPhone threaten MSFT
Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard is being labeled a threat to Microsoft's platform dominance, with the operating system's new features such as Spaces, and the Mac's ability to run Windows, being cited as symptoms of the effect. BusinessWeek writer Gary Morgenthaler states that Apple's OS is loosening a "20-year death grip" that Microsoft has had on the industry, especially when combined with VM solutions such as VMware Fusion or Parallels.
XpertMart software update
Software developer XpertMart has updated its self-titled POS & Inventory Control software, which is designed to manage an entire chain of retail stores, handling wholesale accounts as well as online sales. Among new additions to the program is an integrated Accounts Receivable component, with options such as individual credit limits, aging reports, and the ability to generate balance statements.
TiVo vs. Dish resolved
The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has once again denied an appeal by the Dish Network in light of a legal victory by TiVo, filings show. TiVo contends that Dish DVRs violate a software patent it holds, connected to split recording and viewing; the latter company has protested this however, and fought not only the initial verdict of a lower court, but also the outcome of its first federal appeal. In the wake of this second appeal, the Federal Circuit's decision is final and Dish has little to no legal recourse.
DS Lite at E3 2008 Rumor
Famitsu publisher Hirokazu Hamamura today fueled speculation by suggesting that Nintendo is likely to introduce a new version of its DS handheld. Although not pointing to sources, Hamamura points to murmurings in the industry as well as historical evidence as signs of the replacement: the Japanese game maker has released at least one new or revamped handheld every two years and last did so in 2006 with the DS Lite, according to the magazine chief.
AMD Chief resigns
After announcing lower revenues for the start of 2008 and a 10 percent reduction of its workforce earlier this week, chip maker AMD on Friday said its senior vice president and chief technology officer, Phil Hester, has resigned. AMD said Hester's post will not be filled, and the company stresses the resignation is not related to its job cuts. The resignation comes at a difficult time for the chip maker, as it faces strong competition from Intel and is suffering delays in the release of its primarily newer versions of its Phenom and Opteron quad-core processors.
ABI on Mobile Browsers
Continuing a string of research on the cellphone industry, ABI Research today said in a new report that it expects the use of mobile webbrowsers to grow ten times its size in the next five years. The analysis firm estimates that 76 million copies of browsers were in use by the end of 2007 but that this should grow to 700 million by 2013. The surge is credited to a surge in smartphone use, which is expected to bring full web browsing as well as a greater number of mobile-oriented websites.
Fujitsu 'green' notebooks
The Japanese division of Fujitsu is preparing to demonstrate two unusual new notebooks at a design exhibition in Milan, the company has announced. The "WoodShell" is merely a concept PC, but uses a case built primarily out of cedar wood instead of typical metal or plastic materials. This has the benefit of tapping into renewable resources, while at the same time making the computer biodegradable when it is inevitably thrown away. The WoodShell follows a few short weeks after ASUS revealed its bamboo notebook.
GPS in iPhone 2.0
A MacNN reader has discovered nearly conclusive proof that Apple is implementing GPS support in the next iPhone, with notes on the developer site mentioning altitude measurements – something that is impractical with current cell tower-based positioning due to accuracy. The note says little else regarding the "verticalAccuracy" variable, besides noting that it can be a positive or negative value, measured in meters, and that it is available in iPhone OS 2.0 or later.
ASUS M70 Notebook
ASUS on Thursday revealed its new flagship notebook from its Personal Entertainment Center line, the M70 (content coming soon). The HD-capable notebook features a 17-inch, 1920x1200-pixel resolution display and takes advantage of it with Blu-ray support and an HDMI port. ASUS' dynamic brightness technology improves image quality by reading the environment's color temperature and adjusting levels accordingly.
Apple hires Charnas
Apple recently announced it has filled a position it has been lacking for years, as newly appointed general counsel Daniel Cooperman hired Charles Charnas, HP's lawyer of 18 years. According to AppleInsider, Charnas oversaw both the $4.5 billion acquisition of Mercury Interactive, as well as the purchase of Compaq for $25 billion. The hiring comes eight years after former attorney Michael Wyatt left Apple in 2000.
Vista UAC meant 'to annoy'
One of Windows Vista's design features was deliberately implemented "to annoy users," a Microsoft executive admitted yesterday at the RSA 2008 conference in San Francisco. David Cross, a product unit manager, explained to an audience that Vista's User Account Control scheme was built to discourage people from running as an administrator on their computers, which in case of attack can grant hackers deeper access than they might otherwise be allowed. "We needed to change the ecosystem, and we needed a heavy hammer to do it," said Cross.
NVIDIA low-cost CPU plans
NVIDIA, addressing a meeting of financial analysts, has announced plans for a new CPU platform. Currently known only as "The World's Most Affordable Vista Premium PC," the platform would incorporate an integrated graphics processor from NVIDIA alongside one of VIA's upcoming Isaiah CPUs, in a design that would cost below $45. The chip is deliberately intended to compete with Intel, for whom NVIDIA has previously supplied hardware; the latter company claims that its platform is capable of 36 gigaflops, whereas a similarly-priced Intel 945/ICH4 combination is limited to 6.4.
ABI on 3G Cell Strain
Unlimited cellular plans, and particularly data plans, are liable to create severe pressure on the providers that host them even as the make new features available, says a new study from ABI Research. Analysts at the group warn that the promise to carriers of new subscribers through mostly or completely unlimited plans from AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon may be offset by the need to support very likely spikes in network traffic. Providers are likely to spend extra to make sure their networks can handle the load, ABI says.
Macessity Mac mini stands
Accessory maker Macessity has introduced two new products, built for Apple's Mac mini desktop computers. The M4-Mini is a stand which actually sits on top of a Mini, allowing users to place a monitor or other heavy objects on top; monitors as heavy as 60lbs can be supported. The stand itself is made of steel with aluminum coloring, and uses rubber pads to hold its position and avoid damaging furniture.
Lenovo ThinkPad X400 Leak
Lenovo's ThinkPad X300 is just the first wave of a new line of ultra-thin notebooks at the company, says an apparent leak from Gizmodo. Timed to coincide with the launch of Intel's low-power Centrino 2 platform and processors in September, the line will scale down to a 12-inch X200 but will also move upwards to a 14-inch X400 and even a 15.4-inch X500, supplying a similar case thickness but at the user's choice of screen size.
iSpQ Videochat software
nanoCom is promoting a Mac client for iSpQ Videochat, its video-based social networking service. Like other social networking sites, users are encouraged to great personal profiles; the focus however is on arranging real-time text and video chat, using webcams. Video is displayed at 320x240 at 15fps. Rooms are moderated, and users can also send each other messages with photos attached.
Dell XPS M1530 LED Screen
Making the change months after it appeared with the launch of the M1330, Dell has updated the XPS M1530 with its first advanced display options. Higher-end versions of the system can now be equipped with an LED-backlit version of the 1440x900 screen. The addition both improves the color accuracy of the performance system's display and also promises to extend battery life over the cold cathode fluorescent (CCFL) screens found on most notebooks today. Dell doesn't supply battery life estimates, though previous LED systems have typically gained between 20-30 minutes of extra run time.
MacBook Air Bluetooth fix
Apple has a released a new update for the MacBook Air, specifically addressing the notebook's Bluetooth wireless technology. Unlike most updates from Apple, there is no information on what the new one improves or fixes; the company will only say that it "should be installed on all MacBook Air Systems." The patch is a 1.2MB download, and requires Mac OS X 10.5.1 or higher; it can be downloaded automatically through Software Update, or installed manually following a web download.
MS Retail Store Rumor
Microsoft is seriously investigating the prospect of opening a self-branded set of retail stores, according to a new claim. Alleged sources near Microsoft say that the company hopes to boost its brand by launching a retail chain that presents an ideal Microsoft experience, similar to Apple's own outlets. What the store is likely to contain is unknown, though the company is likely to promote Windows and its software. It may also use the strategy to tout its own hardware, including the Xbox 360, the Zune, and potentially its smaller peripherals.
Nokia Mac software beta
Finnish cellphone maker Nokia has released a new beta version of its Multimedia Transfer software, which is specifically designed for Macs. The program exploits Apple's iLife suite, allowing users sync photos in either direction through iPhoto, or copy music to a phone via iTunes. It also handles more routine synching of content such as videos, games, and various other applications.
Nike+ for iPhone/Touch
The Nike+ fitness technology will indeed become available for the iPhone and the iPod touch, a Nike spokesperson has confirmed. Speculation began that it might when patent filings surfaced last month, pointing to an integrated fitness system similar to the existing Nike+iPod kit for Nanos. Although there is no sign of the extra sensors mentioned in the patent, or its extra activities such as weight-lifting, the new Nike+ system should at least replicate the running support of Nike+iPod, and its corresponding website tracking and competition.
Gateway FX Upgrade in Apr
Gateway is finishing its week with a significant upgrade to its FX Edition gaming notebooks that brings its first mid-size models. Previously limited only to the 17-inch P series, the FX name is now attached to the M series with a new model that provides relatively quick performance at a smaller size. The M-6850FX is slightly slower than the base P series with a 1.83GHz Core 2 Duo and uses the cooler-running Radeon HD 2600 to provide better-than-average 3D to a category often neglected by PC builders. It also leaves little necessary to upgrade with 3GB of memory and a 320GB hard drive as stock. Gateway sells the system at retail shops for $1,000.
Shuttle XPC G5 6801M Vista
Shuttle has taken the unusual step of launching a small form factor PC that caters to both current and obsolete HD videos. While the company already sells systems with Blu-ray alone, the XPC G5 6801M Vista incorporates a combo optical drive from LG that allows it to play both Blu-ray titles as well as the now defunct HD DVD format, letting early adopters keep their libraries active. Playback at 1080p is helped along by the use of a Radeon HD 3450 that offloads most of the work from the CPU and also outputs its video to either DVI or HDMI through a bundled adapter.
Statistical analysis Excel
AnalystSoft today unveiled StatPlus:mac, a front-end for Microsoft Excel that turns the application into a statistical analysis tool. The application reportedly offers users a user-friendly interface with a non-interactive set of calculations, which provides repeatable results. StatPlus:mac is capable of computing normality tests, Pagurova Criterion, correlation coefficients, GLM ANOVA, and non-parametric statistical analysis and is available for $200 per license.
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