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Dec 97 - NewsBits

Volume Number: 13 (1997)
Issue Number: 12
Column Tag: Newsbits

Dec 97 - Newsbits

by Jessica Courtney

Deneba Adds Web Design Capabilities to Canvas with Colada

Web-publishing tool to debut in Canvas 5.0.3 update

Deneba Software announced that it is shipping Colada, its new web page authoring plug-in tool for Canvas 5. Colada, which is Java based, allows Canvas 5 users to create pixel-perfect Internet pages quickly and easily. Colada emphasizes ease-of-use, instant access to Canvas 5's robust features, effortless previewing capabilities, and functionality as its underlying strengths.

Canvas 5 users are invited to download Colada from the company's web-site. Deneba is featuring Colada in its Canvas 5.0.3 update which is shipping free of charge to all registered Canvas users.

Colada is a one-step solution for creating visually appealing, intricate web pages within Canvas 5. There is no need to learn HTML code with Colada. Each web page is automatically saved using both Java applets and HTML code. Colada operates on both Mac OS and Windows platforms. Colada is compatible with all modern browsers enabling users to view web pages with or without Java support.

Since all page design takes place within Canvas, there is a short learning curve. URL management is both simple and intuitive. Hyperlinks can be assigned to any object by simply accessing the URL command and URL attachment palette. Assigned hyperlinked objects can contain links to pages within a Canvas publication, to traditional HTML pages, or to external links at remote web sites.

Canvas users can link http, ftp, and mailto URL tags to any object or text selection in Canvas 5. Users can apply any colors and text styles to hyperlinked text. The URL attachment palette also allows users to find objects that have a specified URL assigned to them and remove the URL assigned to any object or text selection. Colada users can even choose URL prefixes (text at the beginning of Internet addresses) in order to quickly assign web, ftp, and e-mail addresses from the pop-up menu.

Digital Alchemy Upgrades Mercutio MDEF to Support Mac OS 8

Digital Alchemy announced the release of the Mercutio MDEF version 1.3.4. The Mercutio MDEF is a Menu DEFinition resource that allow developers to easily extend the power of their application menus. Mercutio allow menu items to have multiple-modifier key-equivalents (e.g. shift-command-C), custom icons, item callbacks, and other goodies. Mercutio menus may also contain "dynamic menu items" that allow a single menu item to change depending on what modifiers are held down. Dynamic menu items keep menus short while allowing the flexibility of keyboard shortcuts.

Version 1.3.4 adds compatibility with Mac OS 8, the Appearance Manager (including Platinum Theme), improves compatibility with Kaleidoscope, and fixes a number of bugs. Mercutio works under System 6, System 7, and Mac OS 8, and does not require any external system extensions. Mercutio can be downloaded from the Digital Alchemy web site.

The documentation for Mercutio follows the style of Apple's "Inside Macintosh" manuals, and is in Adobe's Acrobat format.

Developers may use Mercutio free of charge as long as they include certain credits in the About box and documentation, and supply Digital Alchemy with a copy of the final program (including future upgrades for as long as the software uses Mercutio.) See "Mercutio Software License.pdf" for details on terms of use. Other licensing terms are available.

Stagecast to Bring Apple's Cocoa Technology to Market

Startup Licenses Proven Authoring Technology for Kids

Stagecast Software, Inc., a K-12 software company, announced that it will develop commercial products based on Apple Computer Inc.'s Cocoa technology. Due to recent changes at Apple, the computer company discontinued commercial development of Cocoa.

Members of the original Apple development team formed Stagecast to further their dream of creating a product line that takes advantage of the simple graphical programming technology first demonstrated in Cocoa.

Cocoa is an authoring tool and player for desktop and web-based children's software. Apple Computer currently distributes a research prototype of the software tool. Apple's latest design release of Cocoa for the Mac OS, version DR2, has been available as a free, unsupported prototype from Apple's web site since July 1997. Version DR2 is now available for free download from Stagecast's web site, and from Apple's web site.

OpenBase Lite Free

OpenBase International, Ltd. announced that it is providing a single user version of its popular OpenBase SQL database FREE on Windows NT and Apple's next generation OS, code named Rhapsody. The FREE deployment license, called OpenBase Lite, allows single user applications to access local databases. Multi-user OpenBase Network licenses which are 100% compatible with the free license are available for purchase.

OpenBase is a high performance SQL engine that handles all of the complexities of data storage and multi-user communication for end-user applications. Aggressive multi-threading, row level locking, text searching, change notification and variable record length technology makes OpenBase a robust database solution.

OpenBase Lite

OpenBase Lite provides a zero administration database interface. An EOF adaptor is included.

OpenBase Network

OpenBase Network provides high performance and unparalleled ease of use. Along with support for the latest object-oriented tools, including Enterprise Objects Framework and WebObjects, OpenBase Network offers graphical tools for designing database schemas, managing user access and viewing database information. ODBC and Java support is available.

Neon Software's NetMinder Ethernet 4.1

Neon Software announced an upgrade to NetMinder Ethernet version 4.0, their software-only network protocol analyzer. Version 4.1 addresses key needs created by the latest Mac OS system and Ethernet hardware.

Running native on any Macintosh or Power Macintosh equipped with a supported 10 or 100 Megabit Ethernet interface, NetMinder Ethernet captures and decodes a full range of Ethernet protocols. In addition to NetMinder Ethernet's original features, such as Packet Inference, which automatically detects and recommends solutions for many types of Ethernet network problems, and Packet Explain, which provides protocol descriptions for all packet types decoded, NetMinder Ethernet allows the user to do packet filtering, post-filtering, and triggering, features previously found only in very expensive hardware-based analyzers.

NetMinder Ethernet 4.0 registered users may upgrade FREE to version 4.1 from Neon Software's website. Registered users of NetMinder Ethernet 1, 2 or 3 may upgrade to version 4.1 for only $99 until December 31st, 1997.

Fantasm 5

Lightsoft announced the release of the demo of Fantasm 5, a Macintosh assembly language development environment. Fantasm 5 is a major upgrade produced over the last two years.

This release addresses four major areas:

  • Flexibility
  • Ease of use
  • Speed
  • Modularity

Fantasm 5 is designed to allow the creation of most any kind of high speed Mac application, code resource, fragment, control panel, extension, shared library etc. Also useful for accelerating higher level C and Pascal projects.

It has a new graphical project manager which allows the use of multiple open projects, embedded projects and merged targets. It provides a new plug in architecture with publically available API. It's up to 260% faster than the version it replaces and uses processor emulation to spot pipeline stalls and dependencies in your source code making it easy to produce very high speed code.

BBEdit Integrates with New Macromedia Tool

Bare Bones Software, Inc. today announced their participation in a collaboration with Macromedia, Inc. to provide high-technology Web authoring tools. As the result of this effort, BBEdit, the premier text and HTML editor for the Mac OS, will integrate seamlessly with the Mac OS version of Dreamweaver, the new visual Web authoring tool announced today by Macromedia.

This unprecedented level of integration is made possible through a close technology partnership between the two companies. Macromedia and Bare Bones Software engineers jointly developed the integration technology behind "Roundtrip HTML" by taking advantage of capabilities unique to the Mac OS and BBEdit's high-tech architecture, enabling the two tools to cleanly exchange HTML code and preserve the integrity of the author's composition.

To ensure that all Dreamweaver customers benefit from this integration with BBEdit, Macromedia is bundling a copy of BBEdit with Dreamweaver. In addition, Dreamweaver customers can register their copy of BBEdit with Bare Bones Software, and thus become eligible for future upgrades and other benefits. BBEdit 4.5 is currently available from DevDepot and Bare Bones Software, Inc.

Claris Ships FileMaker Pro 4.0 for Windows and Mac OS

Claris Corp. announced the immediate availability of FileMaker Pro 4.0 for Windows NT, Windows 3.1 and Mac OS, the newest version of its award-winning cross platform relational database software.

Now with built-in HTTP server and CGI (Common Gateway Interface) capabilities at an estimated retail price of just $199 (U.S.), FileMaker Pro 4.0 will collect and serve dynamic data over the Web from computers with access to the Internet or an intranet via TCP/IP. FileMaker Pro 4.0 is a breakthrough intranet solution for corporate workgroups and small businesses in need of convenient, cost-efficient access to databases. FileMaker Pro 4.0 may also be used to serve data to sophisticated Web sites, created by popular web authoring tools.

Getting a FileMaker Pro 4.0 database onto the Web is incredibly easy using the product's new Web Companion plug-in. With just the click of a check box, users can perform major navigational and editing operations on the Web automatically. FileMaker Pro 4.0 provides an easy way to connect Web pages to databases so that visitors to the site can easily find information they require. Security features to limit browser access privileges are also included, and FileMaker Pro Web hosting is available through numerous companies.

Among other advanced features: FileMaker Pro 4.0 includes a unique drag and drop Excel translation tool that converts most "spreadsheet databases" into full-bodied FileMaker Pro databases in just seconds. Users can send email from within FileMaker Pro 4.0, making it ideal for large mailings (ListServing). Fields may be set to automatically open specified URLs with just a click.

Volume pricing is available, and upgrades from FileMaker Pro 3.0 and competitive products are available at an estimated retail price of $99 (U.S. only).

Jovis Database Engine

DAS Works, maker of ListTable, announced the release and shipment of Jovis Version 1.0.4, an XCmd database engine, and the only fully scriptable database engine available for the Macintosh. It allows users to create single-user, and/or client/server applications with any scriptable application such as HyperCard, SuperCard, Oracle Media Objects, Frontier, and others. With Jovis, data is kept in database files external to the application. The application's scripts include Jovis "calls" that manage and update these files.

Because Jovis was designed and created as an extension to scripting environmen ts (not "spun-off" from a database management system or any product that requires expert knowledge of SQL), it is easy to learn and simple to use. Jovis provides over 175 Relational and Architectural commands. The Relational commands provide all of the standard features and performance requirements expected in a relational database system. The Architectural commands, (commonly referred to as "Flat File" commands) include many enhancements and capabilities, making them far more useful and beneficial than ordinary file utility commands.

With Jovis, developers can store and retrieve text as blocks of data, or as records using relational tables. Additionally, they can store and retrieve 'Pict's, 'snd ', and 'Blob's (Binary Large OBjects). Developers have the ease of use that comes with variable field and record lengths as well as concurrent multiple selections. Most importantly, Jovis gives developers the ability to keep their data separate from their application's interface.

A Jovis datafile can contain virtually unlimited amounts and types of data. Users can store hundreds of thousands of records in a single data file, or in multiple open data files, limited only by hardware sonstrants.

Jovis Server uses classic AppleTalk and System 7.1 or greater. It can reach across zones and allow access from any location on a network. No other file servers or network software is required.

The comprehensive printed manual provides everything necessary for both learning and using Jovis. There are 16 tutorials, 3 syntax reference sections, and extensive appendices.

PowerTools is Now Shipping the Fastest Mac OS Compatible Computer

PowerTools announced that they have in stock and are shipping the new X-Factor series Mac OS compatible computers. Based on the greatly anticipated G3 (Arthur) processor with a "back-side cache," these new systems will out perform any currently shipping models by over 40% in speed. The available configurations are as follows:

  • X-Factor 1: 250Mhz (G3 Arthur processor) mini-tower 32MB / 2.1GB scsi-3 hard drive / 24x CD / 512k "back side" L2 cache / 4MB IMS video card / KB / 10-Base-T ethernet / Mac OS 8 / FWB hard disk tool kit - $3,999.
  • X-Factor 2: 250Mhz (G3 Arthur processor) mini-tower 80MB / 9.1GB fast-wide hard drive / fast-wide SCSI-3 card / 24x CD / 512k "back-side" L2 cache / 4MB IMS video card / KB / 10-Base-T ethernet / Mac OS 8 / FWB hard disk tool kit.- $4,999.

The G3 series of PowerPC processors from Motorola and IBM have been tested to be the fastest currently available. The speed and performance of the processor is also greatly enhanced by "back-side cache" technology, which allows for much faster communication rates (Mhz) between the processor and the cache card. When combined, the resulting performance level far exceeds any currently shipping Mac OS or Wintel computer in the world regardless of the CPU MHz speed.

Equipped with the fastest possible components, the X-Factor excels in every single category. Hard disk transfer rates (sustained) of up to 22MB/Sec can be achieved by the X-Factor 2. A 24x CD Rom player gives much faster access to applications or games from CD-Rom disks. Video support is via an IMS TwinTurbo 128bit video card, often rated as #1 in speed and performance. Millions of colors (photo-realistic) can be achieved up to a 1152 x 870 resolution (21" standard monitor).

PowerTools first started shipping Mac OS computers in 1996 when it received its license. Since then, PowerTools has consistently produced Mac OS compatible computers with the highest performance to price ratio in the Macintosh industry.


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