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Big Fish Games has announced the release of Azada: Ancient Magic, currently only available on the PC, with a Mac edition in the works that should be released within the next month. Azada: Ancient Magic is the sequel to Azada, which was the first puzzle adventure game to be released through online digital distribution. The game allows players to interact with some of the most famous characters from literary history including Dracula, Rapunzel and Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde. In Azadad: Ancient Magic players arrive via a mysterious transport to an enchanted mansion, in the library of Uncle Argus. Titus, the guide from the original Azada, explains that a deeper, darker magic threatens their survival, and only a Master Puzzler can break the powerful spell. Players are encouraged to explore the shelves and books that contain Argus’s life work which includes more than 20 puzzle books containing classic tales.
Google has ended its affiliation with Forestle, the search engine that promised to donate all of its proceeds to save rainforests, according to Ars Technica. Google claimed Forestle.com offered "incentives to click artificially on sponsored links" despite a disclaimer at the top of the page telling visitors to "only click on Google sponsored links if you are really interested in them."
Intel is facing difficulties meeting the demand for its Atom processors, according to InfoWorld. In the emerging market for low-cost mini-notebooks, many manufacturers have been scrambling to get designs to production very quickly. The Atom chip has been heavily marketed by Intel this year, and the response from customers seems to have exceeded not just its expectations, but also its production capacity.
Custom Solutions of Maryland has released a new Mac app, Subliminal Image Pro. Images can be flashed on the display for 1 to 50ms every 5 to 60 seconds, a range that allows adjustment to the threshold of visual perception. While the user works in other programs, Subliminal Image Pro will display the chosen sequences, either randomly or in specified order.
The Escapers has announced the release of Shadow, a clipboard management program, into free public beta. The new utility allows clipboards to be available across networks. Any number of clipboards can be shared or password protected for limited access. Shadow uses caching to retain speed on slower networks, and multi-thread server processes to allow quick access to clipboards that are being used by multiple users.
Today's deals at DealNN include a selection of low priced products from Apple. Starting at $1.99 is the Apple iPod nano (1st & 2nd gen.) arm bands for $1.99 in pink, blue, green or red from LAComputerCompany.com. For $35 is the iWork '06 software package that includes Pages 2 and Keynote 3 from BuyDig.com. Two refurbished iPod models are also featured, the 4GB iPod nano for $98 at the Apple store and the 32GB iPod touch for $455 from Amazon.com. Also available from the Apple store is the 20-inch iMac with 2.4GHz processor and 1GB of RAM for $1050.
Synium software has announced the latest version of its genealogy software, MobileFamilyTree 1.2 for the iPhone. Added features include search for quick information reference, sorted lists for organization, and a graphical family chart. Details can all be edited, including partners, families, children, events, and notes. The app can be synchronized with MacFamilyTree on a home computer. MobileFamilyTree 1.2 for the iPhone is available for $5 from the app store, and requires a licensed version MacFamilyTree 5.2.5, available for $50 from Synium.
RealSofts.com has updated TranslateIt! for Mac to v9.7, adding hover support, full text translation and new dictionaries. Hover support will allow users to translate a word by moving the pointer over an unfamiliar word (in any Cocoa application), with the translation in a pop-up window. Version 9.7 also adds morphology support, a multilingual user interface and custom dictionary building capabilities.
Proving not to be a former household name, Commodore has come back and introduced the UMMD 8010/F netbook at the IFA 2008 show in Berlin. The new Commodore netbook is built around a 10-inch screen, with processing power coming from a 1.6GHz VIA C7-M CPU. While full specs are not known, including the operating system, an 80GB hard drive is to be part of the picture, along with 1GB of RAM.
A new website says it provides an alternate means of searching iPhone apps on the iTunes Store. iPhonexe claims to list all the apps on the iTunes App Store, incorporating some 3,000 titles. Apps are further broken into categories, such as education, entertainment, finance, photography, social and more. Clicking on a listing brings up a page devoted to the chosen app, with full iTunes information and screenshots. Distinguishing the site is a "jailbroken" category of apps, for some of the numerous unofficial titles available.
A Monday report has LG Display and Amtran – maker of Vizio LCDs – agreeing to set up a joint production plant to manufacture LCD panels and TV sets for their brands in China. Under the agreement, Amtran's existing facility in Suzhou, China, will see a $20 million initial investment. The new plant, due to commence operation early next year, will produce 3 million LCD modules along with 5 million LCD TV sets.
A Web-wide leak showing pricing and availability information for Sprint's upcoming handsets reveals when both the HTC Touch Diamond and Touch Pro will see release, according to a recent report. The Diamond will be available around the middle of September, while its QWERTY-equipped counterpart – the Touch Pro – will make its Sprint debut on October 19th.
Users who download music from German retailer Saturn's online music store will now be able to share and use their purchased music without the usual restrictions associated with Digital Rights Management (DRM). The company made the announcement on Monday, in the process becoming the first European reseller to offer all of the songs in Universal Music Entertainment library DRM-free. Universal itself is pushing for the move to DRM-free files, with the recent launch of its LostTunes music store.
TRI-EDRE has announced Tri-BACKUP 5.1.0, an update to its backup software for the Mac. The new v5.1.0 adds FTP backup enhancements, improvements to e-mail notifications, a check-settings function and a simple mode for quick backups. It also adds special alerts for any time the free space on a start-up or destination volume falls below 10 percent.
Fujitsu will soon be adding a new ultra-portable LifeBook notebook PC to its range, according to an FCC filing online. The P1630 would effectively replace the current P1620 but retain the former's 8.9-inch touch-screen display good for 1280x768-pixel resolution. It will, however, use a new ultra low-voltage processor, Intel's Core 2 Duo SU9400 running at 1.4GHz.
SwitchEasy has announced the CapsuleNeo for iPhone 3G, a new mixed-material hybrid case. The case combines an outer polycarbonate shell with a thin silicone layer on the inside, meant for scratch protection. The shell uses an H-frame design with a seven-point locking mechanism, which the company claims can offer impact protection for all of an iPhone's stress points.
Slovenia-based Gorenje used IFA to introduce the first refrigerator to feature an iPod and iPhone dock. The product is officially endorsed by Apple, and offers a docking port that will stream music from the personal Apple devices. In addition to playing the content of and charging the devices, users who plug their Wi-Fi-equipped iPhones or iPod Touch devices into the dock will be able to control their appliances' operation via a network and the iGorenj software.
Northern Irish rock band Snow Patrol is collaborating with Apple on an app for iPhones and iPods, reports say. Music Week writes that the app will be released in advance of the band's fifth studio album, and will work as a sort of interactive booklet, containing videos, artwork, photos and lyrics. The band's label, Fiction Records, will use the app as a promotional tool.
A rebate sheet from Verizon that was leaked on the Internet recently reveals the cellular phone provider's upcoming handsets customers can find at Verizon dealers in the next month. While the sheet conspicuously leaves out anticipated handsets such as the BlackBerry Storm, it outlines in detail several mid- and low-range devices likely to appear at the carrier in the near future.
blue banana software has released Project Calculator 3, a major update to its project time-tracking software. The new upgrade features Quick Filters, a single-click option for frequently-used filters, as well as a menu bar icon, for quick access to the software without its main window. Also present are Growl notifications and a pause-period editor.
Classmate PC reseller CTL plans to set a new floor for desktops with a nettop that shares the same design philosophy as Intel's portable. The 2go pc nettop will cost as little as $149 thanks to its use of a 1.6GHz Atom processor but desktop-oriented parts. The price undercuts ASUS' Eee Box in part by introducing the entry-level model as a barebones kit: the system comes without its own hard drive and leaves the user to pick the default storage as well as an operating system. This entry system will also have 1GB of memory.
UK carrier O2 has announced its special Pay & Go pricing for the iPhone 3G, a match to contract plans which have been available since July. The Pay & Go options will only become available on September 16th, and will cost £350 for an 8GB phone, or £400 for a 16GB model. Each choice will get users a free year of web browsing and Wi-Fi hotspot access, after which point data will cost £10 per month.
Sony Ericsson today denied claims that its XPERIA X1 smartphone has been pushed back as far as early 2009, contradicting claims from its own employees at IFA as well as brief status updates on its own website. The firm now maintains that it has always kept its first Windows Mobile device to a fall 2008 launch and refutes claims that the software was too unreliable.
Chipmaker Intel has quietly released three new desktop processors, according to a Monday report. The new quad-core Q8200 and dual-core E5200 share a more modern 45 nanometer architecture, while the Celeron D 450 is made on the older 65nm topology. The new quad-core chip is meant as a true entry-level quad-core chip and runs at 2.33GHz with a simpler 4MB of L2 cache along with a 1,333MHz front system bus.
Stone Design has released Twittelator Pro, a paid version of its normally free Twitter app for the iPhone. The Pro edition adds several features, most notably the ability to access multiple accounts, and quickly switch between them. Users can also pick from three different themes, and the interface has been altered to use scaling fonts, confirmation before each tweet, and limited copy/paste functions.
Meizu has demonstrated a working example of its long-delayed M8 cellphone in action, courtesy of a new video posted by company founder J. Wong. The nearly four-minute clip confirms that the device closely mimics the iPhone's interface down to its home screen, media player, and photo management app; a relatively new addition seen in the software is a file browser for navigating content outside of what's immediately recognized by the touchscreen device.
Sprint has already slipped details of what its WiMAX-based Xohm wireless service will feature when it launches later this month, a set of hidden pages show. The company'S device list and FAQs show the firm will have just the N810 WiMAX Edition as its stand-alone device and will primarily rely on PC adapters, including a ZyXEL router as well as a Samsung ExpressCard modem and a ZTE USB modem. Notebooks with WiMAX built-in will also support the service and are known to include an ASUS Eee PC variant and new Toshiba notebooks.
Coneri has developed a new iPhone app, Seismometer, that measures any vibrations or movements, including earthquakes. It relies on a unique application of the phone's built in accelerometer, gathering sensor data from two axes. The information is then analyzed, and the energy measurements are plotted on a rolling logarithmic scale. Seismometer is available for free from iTunes.
Got Game Entertainment has shipped MindHabits, a game that claims to reduce stress and boost optimism after only five minutes of play a day. Based on research from McGill University, the title presents positive state-of-mind challenges, in an attempt to help the user boost self-confidence and improve work performance. A sample challenge finds the user seeking happy faces in a crowd of frowning ones.
New evidence appears to support the existence of a fourth-generation iPod nano, reports say. A company called Hama is displaying a series of alleged Nano 4G cases at the IFA electronics expo in Berlin, which runs until September 3rd. The cases notably match the design of a Nano revealed by Digg founder Kevin Rose, which would return to a tall shape but with an extended vertical display.
Normally known for building notebooks for other companies, Quanta will start producing Mobile Internet Devices (MIDs) under its own name, company chair Barry Lam said on Monday. The executive is short on details but says it will make one of the small devices with a focus on better mobile Internet access than the Wi-Fi that limits most notebooks; past MIDs such as those from GigaByte have often included 3G cellular Internet access and should soon include support for WiMAX and other long-range access.
Microsoft today dropped the price of the Xbox 360 in Japan in a bid to capitalize on a sudden surge in console demand that triggered a console shortage. The Japanese system is now the least expensive of all and sees an entry Arcade model selling for the equivalent of $180, or a full $100 less than its current US pricing. The 60GB Pro model also now sells for much less at $275, while the top-end 120GB Elite system now sells for the equivalent of $367.
Creative has quietly updated its ZEN Mozaic to 16GB, doubling the capacity of the player just a week before observers and inside sources expect Apple to update iPods through a special event. The new model should have the same features as the 2GB through 8GB Mozaic models, including the relatively rare external speaker as well as FM radio, voice microphone, and Creative's newer Centrale software for syncing media more easily than the company's past software.
Microsoft is developing its own centralized app store to compete with similar offerings from Apple and Google, the company itself has revealed through a Seattle job listing. The firm is currently searching for a Product Manager for a service known as Skymarket that would become a key aspect of Windows Mobile 7 and launch at the same time. A recruit would effectively head the entirety of the project and set the business model as well as the pricing and other terms.
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Secure your Google accounts today
Google is offering 2GB of Google Drive storage today for free, if users check the security of their accounts. As part of Safer Internet Day 2016, the scheme will give the 2GB storage extension to anyone going through the Google Security Checkup, examining connected devices, permissions, and other security settings associated with their Google account.
Swift benchmarking suite goes open-source
Following the release of new betas for all its platforms, Apple on Monday also made a suite of 75 tools for benchmarking Swift-developed coding projects, including libraries for benchmarking functions, a utility for comparing the resulting metrics, and a driver for running them. The company says it is asking the community for help in developing additional benchmarks, as well as further "helper" libraries and overall code review for better stability and performance. Apple plans to include benchmark pull requests in Swift's new continuous integration system as well. http://bit.ly/1W8u0EU
Instagram now supporting multiple accounts
As reported earlier, Instagram is now rolling out support for multiple accounts (up to five) in version 7.1.5 of its iOS app. The feature has been one of the main attractions of third-party Instagram clients, but it is unclear if users must seek out an "add account" preference in the app; additionally, some users are reporting that the ability to add accounts has not yet been added. The company says notifications "depend on when you last logged in, and the number of devices that are logged into that account," suggesting not all notifications across accounts will appear when logged into a given one. http://bit.ly/1moh95p
Pictures of Galaxy S7, Edge leaked
New images have been leaked of Samsung's new Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge. The images of the Galaxy S7 are very similar to a draft leaked earlier this year, with a curved back reminiscent of the iPhone 3G with the normal Samsung camera hump in the upper center of the phone. The picture of the Galaxy S7 Edge as leaked is running a benchmark application showing modest improvements over the S6 line, if accurate. Both models are expected to be formally announced in a February 21 press event hosted by Samsung. http://bit.ly/20Gf07X
Bambooti wooden skins for MacBooks
Bambooti has introduced premium wooden skins for Apple laptops that allow users to customize any design or logo directly on the case. Each Bambooti skin is handcrafted from sustainably managed forests, and are hand sanded and spray-finished to create an ultra smooth exterior. Bambooti's wooden skins start at $65 on the fully-funded Kickstarter which includes a custom design or logo of the user's choice that will be engraved on the product. http://kck.st/1PhE6Sb
Apple Music in Taiwan, now up to 113 countries
Apple Music has now added its 113th country, Taiwan, to its expanding list of areas where it offers its paid subscription service. The price in the country will start at NT$150 (about $4.50 US) for an individual subscription, and that now includes (as it does in the rest of the world) the formerly free-but-ad-supported iTunes Radio feature, which as in other countries will be customized somewhat to offer channels of locally-popular music styles. Apple Music is now available in 16 countries and regions -- including China, India, Russia, and Japan -- where Spotify has not yet arrived.
Invisible wall mount for iPad Pro, mini
Computing hardware mounting company Wall-Smart has announced the availability the new "invisible" wall mount, with models for the iPad Pro, iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 4 -- all with no bezel. The invisible mount includes ÂPower Over Ethernet to USB, which allows charging while in-wall, and is available for both drywall and solid surfaces such as solid wood panels or partition walls. Prices vary widely by iPad model, and required mounting hardware. http://bit.ly/1SE5jCO