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Jul 97 - NewsBits

Volume Number: 13 (1997)
Issue Number: 7
Column Tag: Newsbits

Jul 97 - Newsbits

by Jessica Courtney

Kaidan Announces KiWi

A Low Cost Panoramic VR Tripod Head

KiWi is the first truly affordable panoramic VR tripod head. KiWi brings digital photographic panoramas to an even wider audience. With the advent of easy-to-use and affordable VR panorama creation software, such as PictureWorks' Spin and Panimation's Nodester, the KiWi panhead provides a complete solution that is ideal for anyone interested in adding digital VR panoramas to their websites, e-mail and multimedia applications.

The KiWi bracket consists of two intersecting aluminum struts that adjust and lock to accommodate the nodal points of a wide range of digital and conventional cameras, such as the Kodak DC50, Apple QuickTake 100/150/200, APS film cameras, up to 35mm SLR cameras equipped with 15mm lenses. When the two locking screws are loosened, the KiWi pan head disassembles into two flat pieces that easily fit inside a camera bag. Dimensionally, the adjustment range of the KiWi supports cameras with a tripod mounting thread-to-nodal point distance of 4 3/8 inches (111mm) and a camera mounting surface-to-nodal point distance of 5 1/4 inches (133mm).

KiWi attaches to any standard tripod and camera equipped with a standard 1/4-20 mounting thread. Unlike the other models of the Kaidan QuickPan line, which use angular detents to provide click-stops, the KiWi uses a specially designed friction joint that provides smooth and even drag while turning the camera. A convenient label on the base provides a clear indication of the location and increment angle of the camera.

QuickCRC 1.0 -- Software Design Tool

Excel Software, makers of the popular MacA&D and WinA&D software engineering tools, today announced availability of QuickCRC 1.0 for both Macintosh and Windows 95/NT. QuickCRC is a software design tool for discovering objects and related information for an object-oriented software development project. QuickCRC automates the CRC card concept of identifying classes, responsibilities and collaborations between objects. It provides developers with a powerful, intuitive design tool that requires little or no formal training.

QuickCRC uses a diagram workspace for creating card and scenario objects. A card represents the properties of a class including its name, description, superclasses, subclasses, attributes, responsibilities and collaborating objects. A scenario represents a design mechanism defined as a series of steps involving communicating objects. Scenarios can reference cards or other scenarios. Information is entered into the Property dialog of each card and scenario object. Cards and scenarios can also reference external agents defined by the designer to identify system and user interfaces for the software being designed.

QuickCRC provides active simulation of an evolving design. Features include single stepping backwards, forwards or over a called scenario or jumping to a specific location in the scenario stack of a multiple scenario simulation. Designers can even simulate mechanisms in an incomplete design by just selecting a scenario and clicking the Simulate button.

QuickCRC automatically and transparently maintains relationships between cards, scenarios and external agents as fluid design changes take place during the early phase of a development project. For example, if a card references undefined subclasses or superclasses, those cards are generated automatically. Name changes and cross references between objects get updated instantly. Card and scenario objects can be arranged visually on the diagram by QuickCRC based on user specified criteria to highlight relationships between objects. Card and scenario objects can be separated into different diagrams based on functional areas of a complex design or cut and pasted between different project documents. Design models can be verified to locate errors. Information can be listed to a text report to serve as a coding specification. Design models can also be exported or imported to Excel Software's MacA&D and WinA&D software engineering tools for detailed design or code generation. Likewise, Excel Software's MacTranslator and WinTranslator can be used to automatically generate QuickCRC design models from existing C++, Object Pascal or Delphi code.

Java News Offers Daily Distillate of Java

Roaster Technologies today officially launched "Roasted Java News," an online Java News Daily. Each freshly updated version includes a comprehensive collection of news headlines concerning Java culled from over 50 different publications available on the Internet. In addition, a department of "Short Takes" supplies information on new or updated applets, applications or Java-related sources.

Roaster Technologies' website also functions as a major Java resource for technology people working with Java. The newly revised site, also making its debut, includes a popular section called "Roasted Java Links," which provides an easily accessible wealth of information on Java related resources. This area gives the user current, verified information about other sites of interest to Java users; the user no longer has to wonder if the link is outdated, or stale. The webmasters at Roaster have done the work.


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