ChromaTunes is new music player for Mac OS X
Veenix has introduced ChromaTunes (http://www.veenix.com/ChromaTunes.html), a music player for Mac OS X (10.6 or higher) that automatically organizes music by sonic energy/mood.
ChromaTunes uses Veenix's sonic analysis technology (HPE). Features include the ability to send playlists to iTunes and the ChromaPad Mini Player control deck, which packs the features into a small desktop footprint. ChromaTunes also features smart playlists for artist, album, and genre, plus Veenix's "Smart More Like This Tune" technology that allows users to select a tune and instantly create a playlist of similar tunes.
ChromaTunes supports AAC/M4A music files. A free demo is available for download from the Veenix website (). For a limited time, users can save US$10 off the retail price of $29.95 -- or get ChromaTunes free when they purchase Veenix TypeBook Creator, which does for fonts what ChromaTunes does for music.
CompuExpert brings HS-905BT Bluetooth headset to North America
CompuExpert has released the Genius Bluetooth HS-905BT Stereo Headset (http://compuexpert.com/genius/home.html) in North America. Compatible with all Bluetooth-enabled mobile phones and devices, the HS-905BT allows users wirelessly connect to their mobile phones, iPads, tablet computers and music players and take phone calls or listen to music using a single headset.
With its clip-on design and effective range of up to 10 meters, the Bluetooth receiver/microphone is lightweight and easy to attach to clothing and accessories. There are buttons on the device for controlling volume, call answering and ending, and music selection.
The HS-905BT can play music for up to six hours or standby for 165 hours on a single charge; charging purportedly takes only two hours via the included Micro USB cable. A pair of hearphones is also included, but users may also turn their favorite headphones into a Bluetooth portable device using the 3.5 mm jack.
The HS-905BT will also connect to a set of...
Netgear introduces nano-sized powerline adapter
Netgear (http://www.netgear.com) has introduced the Powerline AV+ 200 Nano Dual-port Set, which features a tiny adapter that plugs into any electrical outlet and provides two Ethernet ports for connecting Internet-enabled devices such as TVs, computers, Blu-ray players and video game consoles to home networks.
'Powerline networking, which makes connections through a home's existing electric wiring, is ideal for reaching rooms beyond the range of WiFi signals, without the cost and complication of installing Ethernet cables, according to Fred Guiot, senior product line manager for Powerline Products at Netgear.
One adapter from the kit is plugged into a wall outlet near the home router/gateway, with an Ethernet cable connecting the router to the adapter. The other adapter can be placed in any outlet in the home and makes an automatic connection to the home router at up to 200 megabits per second (mbps). This adapter has two ports for connecting nearby Internet-enabled devices through...
CS Odessa announces follow-up Solution to ConceptDraw MindTwee
CS Odessa (http://www.conceptdraw.com) has announced its new "Social Media Response" solution.
Using the ConceptDraw Social Media Response solution improves quality of content in social media and helps build an active customer community, according to CS Odessa President Gregory Zhukov. It allows companies to be more effective in timely messaging thanks to the ability for rapid response to a customer's post in social media, he adds.
The Social Media Response solution creates interactive social media flow charts and action mind maps. The solution includes a video tutorial and a number of samples helping social media teams refine and organize their response process. There are materials to help trainers and consultants develop a social media strategy and provide training for social media groups on how to effectively accomplish their daily work.
ConceptDraw MindMap retails for US$219, and ConceptDraw Pro retails for $249. Competitive upgrades from other paid products are available.
Nisus Software releases Lion compatible versions of its word...
Nisus Software (http://www.nisus.com/) has released OS X 10.7 ("Lion") compatible versions of their Nisus Writer Pro and Nisus Writer Express word processors.
These updates, which are free for owners of Express 3.x and Nisus Writer Pro, also fix a handful of bugs. Nisus Writer Express, and Nisus Writer Pro are universal binaries and require Mac OS X 10.4.11 or later.
Nisus Writer Pro 2.0.1 is available at the Nisus web store for only US$79 and $49.00 for the upgrade version. A three license Family Pack is available for $99. Versions on CD are available for an additional $10, plus shipping.
Nisus Writer Express 3.4 is available for $45 and $30 for the upgrade version. A three license Family Pack is available for $79. These updates are free to current license holders of Express 3.x and Pro.
Akvis releases HDRFactory 2.0
Akvis (http://www.akvis.com) has released Akvis HDRFactory 2.0, an update of the software for Mac OS X (10.4 and higher) and Windows that creates HDR images from a series of photographs taken at different exposures or from a single photograph. The latest version introduces an Effects with parameters tool that helps to add a glow effect to an image, darken or lighten image edges, and add warm or cold tints.
Akvis HDRFactory is a program for creating High Dynamic Range images and making photo correction. It creates HDR photos (images with high dynamic range) by combining several images of the same object taken with different exposure values.
The app supports files in the RAW format. Registered users can upgrade to version 2.0 for free. Akvis HDRFactory is available in two editions: as a standalone program and as a plug-in to a photo editor.
Akvis HDRFactory sells for US$69 for the Home version (either plug-in or standalone), $99 for Home Deluxe (either plug-in or standalone, all...
Primate Labs releases Geekbench 2.2
Primate Labs has announced Geekbench 2.2, an update to their cross-platform processor and memory benchmark solution for Mac OS X, Windows and Linux. The new version features an improved interface and includes a new hardware stress test that helps users determine if their computer is experiencing hardware problems.
Geekbench provides a set of benchmarks engineered to measure processor and memory performance. Version 2.2 includes a new command-line interface on Mac OS X and Windows. The command-line interface provides enterprise users, system administrators, and power users with a way to automate Geekbench.
Geekbench 2.2 is a free update for existing Geekbench users. New users can purchase a single-platform license for US$12.99 from the Mac App Store or the Primate Labs Store (http://www.primatelabs.ca/geekbench/) or a cross-platform license for $19.99 from the Primate Labs Store.
Pro Tools 9 tutorial focuses on Mac music, sound design...
Infinite Skills today announces a new Avid Pro Tool 9 Training Video Course. It highlights professional standard audio production techniques for music, voice and soundtrack work.
With 85 separate tutorials, the series has been designed to help beginners gradually learn recording concepts and techniques, implement virtual and real-world instruments and produce polished publishable tracks. The course is currently available in DVD-ROM and downloadable format.
The Learning Avid Pro Tools 9 Tutorial Video series can now be ordered from the Infinite Skills website (http://macte.ch/JE6Vn) on DVD-ROM or as a direct download for US$99.95. Both versions of the training includes usable working files that correspond with onscreen projects.
Apple working on remote diagnostic tool for iOS devices?
Apple is working on a web-based remote diagnostic tool that would help an Apple Specialist in finding and fixing problems with iOS devices, reports "HardMac" (http://www.hardmac.com). This tool's arrival would probably coincide with the release of iOS 5 this fall.
"HardMac" says the diagnostic tool will provide info such as:
° Health, level of load of the battery, duration passed since the last complete charge;
° The minimum level to which the battery was disdischarged;
° The iOS version installed;
° The ability to ascertain if the device was turned off "normally."
China: Apple suppliers accused of systemic pollution
Chinese environmental groups have accused Apple suppliers in the country of systemic pollution, reports the "Financial Times."
In a report released on Wednesday, five Chinese non-governmental organisations said the US technology company was using suppliers with public records of environmental violations and taking “advantage of the loopholes in developing countries’ environmental management systems." The accusations escalate a standoff between Apple and Ma Jun, director of the Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs, a co-author of the report, the article says.
The groups have sought to persuade 29 big electronics brands over the past year to work with them on containing pollution in their supply chain, but singled out Apple as unresponsive. Read the complete story at http://macte.ch/55PUL .
Openwave sues Apple, RIM
Another day, another lawsuit. Openwave Systems (http://www.openwave.com), a company that specializes in all-Internet Protocol (all-IP) mediation and messaging solutions, has filed complaints against Apple and Research in Motion "in order to protect its intellectual property on how mobile devices connect to the Internet."
The complaint, filed at the International Trade Commission (ITC) in Washington, DC, requests that the ITC bar the import of smartphones and tablet computers that infringe Openwave patents, including, but not limited to, Apple’s iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPod touch, iPad and iPad 2; and RIM’s Blackberry Curve 9330 and Blackberry PlayBook. Openwave also filed a similar complaint in federal district court in Delaware.
“Openwave invented technologies that became foundational to the mobile Internet. We believe that these large companies should pay us for the use of our technologies, particularly in light of the substantial revenue these companies have earned from...
Shrine of Apple offers photos, video of all Apple products
A new website, Shrine of Apple (http://www.ShrineofApple.com) offers photos and videos of every Apple product ever made. Or at least it will soon.
The site's mission is to showcase the entire spectrum of products that Apple has sold to the public since 1976. Shrine of Apple is launching with a small sample but purportedly has hundreds more queued up to trickle out every
Shrine Of Apple is the creation of Jonathan Zufi, an expert in the field of mobility and wireless devices by day and aivid Apple collector by night. He grew up learning to code on an Apple II and, after coming across an old Apple II software title in 2009, began his mission to catalog everything ever made by Apple and provide a destination where anyone in the world can explore the diverse history of the Apple product line since 1976.
US government moves to block AT&T's acquisition of T-...
The U.S. government has sued to block AT&T'’s proposed US$39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile USA, saying the deal would “substantially lessen competition” in the wireless market, reports "Bloomberg."
In the complaint filed today in federal court in Washington, the U.S. is seeking a declaration that Dallas-based AT&T’s takeover of T-Mobile, a unit of Deutsche Telekom AG (DTE), would violate U.S. antitrust law. The U.S. also asked for a court order blocking any arrangement implementing the deal. Read the complete story at http://macte.ch/573pA .
CoreBreach game races onto the Mac
CoreCode, together with nCreate, has released CoreBreach (http://corebreach.corecode.at/), a Mac "antigravity" racing game. It's compatible with Mac OS X 10.6.6 and higher and is available at the Mac App Store.
Here's how the game is described: "CoreBreach features a futuristic environment where you have to fight your evil opponents while racing towards world domination. The release of CoreBreach marks the return of the genre of anti-gravity racing games to the Macintosh platform, after an complete absence of over nine years! The game boasts a compelling career mode with six diverse race tracks, six upgradeable anti-gravity race ships and six different combat weapons."
HDHomeRun PRIME app lets you stream live TV to your iPad
Elgato (http://www.elgato.com) says its HDHomeRun PRIME App for iPad 2 is available on the App Store. The App works in conjunction with the Silicondust HDHomeRun PRIME line of CableCard-enabled network tuners, enabling users to stream and record live premium cable TV on the iPad 2.
The HDHomeRun PRIME App enables viewing and recording of live cable TV anywhere in your home’s Wi-Fi network. The HDHomeRun PRIME device sends the TV signal straight to the HDHomeRun PRIME App, so there's no need for the user to turn on a computer. In addition, the app lets the user record programs directly to their iPad with the option of transferring those recordings from the iPad 2 to a Mac or PC.
Elgato’s latest solution streams cable TV “copy freely” channels to the iPad 2. Users with Verizon FiOS or Comcast cable television have a particular advantage, since the majority of channels from these providers are sent with a "copy freely" flag, according to Adam Steinberg, Elgato’s vice president of...
Wacom has an Inkling (digital sketch pen)
Wacom has introduced the Inkling, a digital sketch pen that captures a digital likeness of your work while you sketch with its ballpoint tip on any sketchbook or standard piece of paper.
Designed for rough concepting and creative brainstorming, Inkling bridges the gap between paper sketching and digital drawing by giving users at the front end of the creative process a way to rough-out ideas with real ink on paper and capture their concepts digitally so that they can be later refined on their computer, according to Don Varga, director of Professional Products at Wacom.
Inkling even allows users to create layers in the digital file while sketching on paper in Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator and Autodesk Sketchbook Pro.
Spontaneous and Liberating. The digital sketch pen is comprised of both hardware and software components.
Hardware includes both the pen and a wireless receiver that captures a likeness of the sketch and stores it digitally. The ballpoint pen uses Wacom’s pressure...
Active Media rolls out mSATA SSDs
Active Media Products has announced a new line of SaberTooth M1 mini SATA (mSATA) SSD drives for notebook upgrades that deliver transfer speeds up to 160MB/second and are fully compliant with the JEDEC MO-300B mSATA specification.
mSATA is a new JEDEC standard for small form factor SSDs based on the SATA-II, 3Gbps interface. mSATA SSDs measure 2.0 x 1.2 inches and use an existing mini PCIe connector, but with a modified SATA pinout.
The Sabertooth M1 mSATA SSD employs the JMF605 SATA controller and NAND Flas. It's available now through Amazon and directly from ActiveMP.com (http://activemp.com/) in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB capacities starting at US$75.
Just Mobile launches iPad wall mount
Just Mobile has launched the US$49.95Just Mobile Horizon, a minimalist wall mount for the iPad and iPad 2.
Crafted from aluminum, the Horizon comes with rubber inserts that hold the iPad and iPad 2 in place without the need for complex brackets. With a hidden dock connector slot and rubber home button, your wall-mounted iPad will work in both landscape and portrait modes.
New USB hub provides large scale syncing for iPads, other...
Datamation Systems has announced high-capacity syncing as an addition to its suite of products designed for iPads and other tablet devices.
The DS-IP-49-SYNC acts as a fully powered USB hub for 49 devices. Using a Mac, it can sync with iTunes or other software capable of addressing USB devices. (It can work with Mac, Windows and Linux operating systems, although there may be some software limitations with a non-Mac host.)
"It lets you avoid the need to use an array of consumer USB hubs," says Joe Mazza, Datamation Systems’ vice president. "It can be used for iPads and other USB 2.0 devices, such as tablets, smart phones, and iPods, some of which it can even charge."
The new DS-IP-49-SYNC and other products are available from major computer companies or directly from Datamation Systems. Additional information can be found at Datamation’s iPad and Tablet security webpage (http://www.ipadcarts.com/).
CRE4MY RapidWeaver theme unveiled by seyDoggy
seyDoggy (http://seydesign.com) has released CRE4MY, an US$30 theme for the RapidWeaver web site creation tool.
CRE4MY, the fourth major release of the Creamy line, includes 35 built-in options and smart features that work together to more than double the possible layout variation, says Adam Merrifield, seyDoggy owner and lead programmer. CRE4MY also incorporates many of the advanced, open source seyDoggy features included in many of their popular RapidWeaver themes, such as SS3, ExtraContent, Smart Layout, Smart Navigation and more, he adds.
Cheetah3D update adds improved Lion compatibility
Cheetah 3D (http://www.cheetah3d.com/) -- software for modeling, animating and rendering 3D objects -- has been updated to version 5.8. The upgrade offers improved compatibility with Mac OS X 10.7 ("Lion").
The Collada export has been improved so that, under Lion, Preview.app can load Cheetah3D-generated Collada files properly. For non-Lion users, version 5.8 also offers improvements like better auto-keying, faster F-Curve drawing and better Undo support when dealing with poses.
Cheetah3D costs US$149 for a single user version; however, version 5.8 is a free update for all registered users of version 5.x and is a $69 for an upgrade from versions 1.x, 2.x, 3.x and 4.x. It requires requires Mac OS X 10.4 or higher.
PDFpen for Mac OS X adds page numbering options
SmileOnMyMac has updated PDFPen (http://www.smileonmymac.com/PDFpen/download.html), its PDF editing and form-filling tool for Mac OS X, to version 5.5. The update adds several page numbering options.
Users can now specify header or footer positioning and alignment. Numbering options now include Roman numerals and letters. Bates Numbering for legal documents has been improved with with options for prefix, digit count and starting number. PDFpen 5.5 also adds initial support for full screen mode in Mac OS X 10.7 ("Lion").
The changes in PDFpen 5.5 have also been made in PDFpenPro 5.5, the pro version that can also convert websites into PDFs, create fillable PDF forms, and construct document table of contents.
PDFpen costs US$59.95, and PDFpenPro is $99.95. Family pack licenses, which cover up to five computers in one household, are $74.95 for PDFpen and $129.95 for PDFpenPro. Upgrades from earlier versions of either application are $25, and free to users who purchased after Feb. 14,...
Time Out 1.6 ready for Lion
Dejal Systems has released Dejal Time Out 1.6, an update to their break reminder tool for Mac OS X. The new version adds exclusion preferences, the ability to pause breaks for a specified time interval, Mac OS X 10.7 ("Lion") compatibility, and other improvements.
Dejal Time Out will "gently" remind you to take a break on a regular basis. It has two kinds of breaks -- a "normal" break, typically for 10 minutes after 50 minutes of work, so you can move about and relax, plus a "Micro" break. The later is a brief pause of typically 10 seconds every 10 minutes, so you can remember not to tense up too much for long periods.
Time Out requires Mac OS X 10.5 or later. The standard edition is available from the Dejal website (http://www.dejal.com/) and is released as "freeware," requiring no payment for its use, though donations are encouraged and appreciated. Time Out Free 1.6 will be available on the Mac App Store once Apple has reviewed it.
Playback Media Server revved to version 1.8.1
Yazsoft has introduced Playback Media Server 1.8.1 (http://www.yazsoft.com/products/playback/information/), an update of their zero configuration media server for Mac OS X 10.5 and higher. It's a maintenance update with some bug fixes and performance tweaks.
Playback can share media stored in folders or even make entire disks available to a Playstation 3 or Xbox 360. No configuration is required. By default, it will share almost any content on the users system. And Playback automatically integrates with iTunes, iPhoto, and Aperture. Users can share all content from these applications transparently or choose specific playlists and albums.
Those who like to tinker will appreciate Playback's built-in Access Control List (ACL) and bandwidth throttling. The ACL allows users to control which devices have access to their media. Bandwidth throttling limits the transfer rate from the computer to their UPnP device. This allows others on the network to do other Internet related activities, such...
MacScan for Mac OS X updated to version 2.9.1
SecureMac has announced MacScan 2.9.1, the latest version of its anti-spyware privacy and security software for Mac OS X. This new version of MacScan enhances protection against the latest threats for Mac OS X, adding usability enhancements, scan engine updates, scheduler fixes as well as user interface changes and updates.
MacScan retails for US$29.99 and can be purchased using Paypal or credit card, either through the built-in registration system, or via the MacScan webstore (http://macscan.securemac.com). Upgrades from previous versions of MacScan 2 are free, and can be obtained by either selecting "Check for Updates" under the "MacScan" menu, or by downloading the demo version from http://macscan.securemac.com and entering your serial number.
The MacScan Family Pack lets you install the anti-spyware software on up to three computers for $49.99. Existing users of MacScan can upgrade the single license to the MacScan Family Pack for the difference of the original price and the...
Syncro Soft updates Oxygen Xml Editor, Oxygen Xml Author
Syncro Soft, the producer of Oxygen XML Editor and Author (http://www.oxygenxml.com), has released version 13 of its XML Editor and XML Author containing a set of tools supporting all the XML related technologies.
Version 13 is focused on user interface improvements related to visual XML editing, XML attributes editing, presentation of results for validation, transformation, spell checking and search operations, XML Diff and SVN support. The EPUB support was extended with visual rendering of EPUB specific files and enhanced validation. New built-in transformation scenarios allow the conversion of TEI documents to EPUB, ODF and DOCX. DITA improvements include search references (where used) within a DITA map, map validation under multiple condition sets (ditaval files), use of subject scheme defined values and more.
The Data Source Explorer view features drag and drop capabilities that allow copy/move operations even between different databases. The new version adds support for JSON...
Real Software announces call for speakers for Real World 2
Real Software -- creator of object-oriented, cross-platform software development tools for Mac OS X, Windows, Linux and the web -- is looking for speakers for Real World, the Real Studio User Conference. The conference is scheduled to take place at the Royal Plaza Hotel in Orlando, Florida on May 24-25, 2012.
The conference is designed to give Real Studio users the opportunity to hear from other Real Studio developers and experts on how to improve their knowledge and skills as a developer. Real World will feature a keynote presentation from Real Software founder and CEO, Geoff Perlman, breakout sessions, networking opportunities and social events.
Those interested in presenting Real Studio and software development related sessions are welcome to submit their proposal with their preferred session topic(s) and a brief description, along with the name and contact information of the speaker(s) to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The deadline for applying to speak is Oct. 15, 2011. There are a...
Apple looking to hire iOS QA Location Engineer
According to an Apple job posting (http://macte.ch/Nnrku), the company is looking to hire an iOS QA Location Engineer "who’s engineering and technical skill is only matched by their problem solving and communication abilities."
Apple says the person hired will work on "exciting new features for iOS location services." The successful candidate will complete both documented and adhoc testing to ensure high quality releases.
ComScore: Apple has 27% of the US smartphone market
ComScore (http://www.comscore.com), a company that "measures the digital world," has released data from the comScore MobiLens service, reporting key trends in the U.S. mobile phone industry during the three month average period ending July 2011.
The comScore study surveyed more than 30,000 U.S. mobile subscribers and found Samsung to be the top handset manufacturer overall with 25.5% market share. Google Android continued to gain ground in the smartphone market reaching 41.8% market share.
Approximately 82.2 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones during the three months ending in July 2011, up 10% from the preceding three month period. Google Android ranked as the top smartphone platform with 41.8% market share, up 5.4 percentage points. Apple strengthened its number two position with 27% of the smartphone market, up one percentage point from the prior reporting period. RIM ranked third with 21.7% share, followed by Microsoft (5.7%) and Symbian (1.9%).
For the three month...
CNN acquires Zite, an iPad news app
CNN has acquired technology company Zite, a news app for the iPad that gives users a personalized magazine-like experience, according to Jim Walton, president of CNN Worldwide.
CNN has added Zite to its already robust portfolio of digital products as a separate, stand-alone business that will continue to innovate and provide users with the news and information they want, he adds. Zite is an iPad app designed to offer content to users that they will find most interesting from a variety of sources across the Web by learning users' preferences and getting smarter as it’s used.
Available for free on the iPad, users can download Zite from the Apple App Store or iTunes.
FileMaker unveils Bento Business Organizer
FileMaker, Inc. (http://www.filemaker.com) has announced the new Bento Business Organizer, a free set of customized database templates designed to make it easy to manage businesses run by sole proprietors.
The Bento Business Organizer from FileMaker, available free with a 30-day trial of Bento 4, offers a set of templates tailor-made for business owners that sell handcrafted goods such as furniture, clothing, paintings, baked goods and jewelry at farmer’s markets, festivals or from their own studios, workshops, and web sites, such as Etsy.com.
The square "quick response" codes turn URLs, vCards, or any kind of text into a block of pixels that users can scan onto their smartphone instantaneously.
The eight templates in the Bento Business can also be used with Bento for iPhone and Bento for iPad, (both sold separately).
UK supermarket chain test drives iPad-equipped shopping trolleys
The Sainsbury UK supermarket chain is testing the trolley in its branch in Cromwell Road in Kensington, West London, according to "The Telegraph" (http://macte.ch/TmpsA). It could introduce them across the UK if the trial is successful.
The trolleys come complete with a tilting iPad holder and speakers. Their front bumpers are fitted with a sensor that lets off a warning beep if an engrossed shopper gets too close to another customer. An onboard battery with a self-charging solar panel ensures that the iPads never run out of power.
The trolleys have been developed by broadcaster Sky to highlight its Sky Go service, which allows iPad users to watch live sport or news on their portable devices, says "The Telegraph." The iPads themselves are, of course, not included.
iTunes Match to have maximum limit of 25,000 songs?
If you’ve got a massive music library, better think twice about syncing it with iTunes Match as the maximum size of an iTunes library in the iTunes Match beta is 25,000 songs, according to "Cult of Mac" (http://macte.ch/jGYsQ).
Assuming a library in which song is an average of 4 minutes long and compressed in CD quality 320kbps, that basically means the upper limit on a library is a size of 250GB, the article notes.
iTunes Match will be available this fall for a $24.99 annual fee. Music not purchased from iTunes can gain the same benefits by using iTunes Match, a service that replaces your music with a 256 kbps AAC DRM-free version if Apple can match it to the over 18 million songs in the iTunes Store, it makes the matched music available in minutes (instead of weeks to upload your entire music library), and uploads only the small percentage of unmatched music, according to Apple.
Apple having limited success battling product counterfeiting in...
Apple was "too slow" to act against rife counterfeiting in China and the Asia market, according to the latest release of Wikileaks cables, seen by "CNN" (http://edition.cnn.com/2011/TECH/gaming.gadgets/08/29/apple.wikileaks/in...).
Apple eventually organized a team in March 2008 to deal with the increasing problem of knockoff iPods and iPhones, according to an electronic memo from the Beijing embassy dated September 2008. Yet, three years after Apple moved to crack down on widespread counterfeiting and put pressure on China, progress has been slow.
Gadget piracy isn't a high priority for the Chinese government, the U.S. reports and experts tell "CNN." China's government declined to investigate a facility in March 2009 that was manufacturing imitation Apple laptops because it threatened local jobs, according to a "Wikileaks" cable dated April 2009. A different arm of China's government scrapped plans for a raid on an electronics mall in the Guangdong province because it could have...
Epson unveils WorkForce Pro printing solutions
Epson America has expanded its business printing solutions with a new product line-up -- the Epson WorkForce Pro WP-4540 and WorkForce Pro WP-4530 all-in-ones and WorkForce Pro WP-4020 ink jet printer.
Designed for small offices, departmental workgroups and vertical markets such as real estate, the WorkForce Pro series purportedly delivers ink cost savings of up to 50% compared to color lasers, while providing the world's fastest auto two-sided print speeds and extra-large ink cartridges.
Both printers deliver single- and double-sided print speeds of 16 ISO ppm (pages per minute) black and 11 ISO ppm color single-sided; 9.2 ISO ppm black and 7.1 ISO ppm color two-sided. Epson's new extra large ink capacity cartridges are capable of printing up to 2,400 pages black and 1,200 pages color, as well as a robust monthly duty cycle of up to 20,000 pages.
Additional productivity features for the WorkForce Pro all-in-ones include:built-in 30-page automatic document feeder to copy, fax and...
The Sims Medieval: Pirates and Nobles lands ashore
Gather your doubloons. The EA Play Label of Electronic Arts says that The Sims Medieval: Pirates and Nobles is now available across North America for US$29.99. It requires The Sims Medieval on the Mac or PC to play.
The Sims Medieval: Pirates and Nobles is an adventure pack to The Sims Medieval, a new series that places the simulated characters from The Sims into the Middle Ages and lets players create heroes, venture on quests and control a kingdom. The adventure pack includes a new storyline, additional quests and one new Kingdom Ambition for players to embark on in their medieval kingdoms.
Here's how the Sims Medieval: Pirates and Nobles is described: "Players can unleash their inner swash-buckling pirate or regal noble by creating a new Hero Sim or customizing their existing medieval Sim with new clothing and accessories. They begin the epic adventure by choosing a side -- pirate or noble -- and then the adventure is up to them for how it plays out. They can battle an enemy in a...
Facilis Technology announces Lion support
Facilis Technology (http://www.facilis.com), which specializes in shared storage solutions for post-production and content creation, has qualified its TerraBlock line of shared storage solutions, versions 5.0 and above, for Mac OS X 10.7 ("Lion").
"Integrating support for OS X Lion into TerraBlock is an extension of our commitment to supporting the latest and most advanced platforms for creative professionals,” says Shane Rodbourn, senior vice president and general manager, Facilis. "Customers who use or purchase TerraBlock 5.0 and above can now experience the same high performance and capacity of TerraBlock with the highly anticipated OS X Lion release"
TerraBlock, Facilis’ high-capacity, shared storage system, supports Fibre channel and Ethernet, volume and file-level control, and multiple platforms. TerraBlock, versions 5.0 and above, are qualified for Lion, but not all third party creative applications that may be running on TerraBlock necessarily support the release. Facilis...
Rays plug-in supports new video, film hosts
Digital Film Tools (http://www.digitalfilmtools.com) says their visual effects plug-in, Rays, has been updated to support video and film hosts. New supported hosts include Adobe After Effects CS5 and up, Premiere Pro CS5 and up, Apple Final Cut Pro 6, 7, and X, Motion 5, and Avid Symphony, Media Composer, Newscutter, and Xpress Pro.
Shedding new light on film and video footage, Rays allows users to create realistic light ray effects. Known as volumetric lighting in computer graphics, or crepuscular rays in atmospheric optics, this effect adds polish and style. By creating shafts of light streaming through clouds, rays filtering through a forest canopy, beams of light on a foggy night, or rays shooting out from text, Rays adds a striking and dramatic quality to any image, says Marco Paolini, founder and president, Digital Film Tools.
The Rays Photo plug-in is available now for US$50 and is compatible with Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, Photoshop Lightroom and Apple's Aperture. If the...
Timing brings automated time tracking to Mac OS X
Eurocomp has released Timing 1.1 (http://timingapp.com), an update to its time tracking application for Mac OS X (10.6.6 or higher). It's available on the Mac App Store for US$9.99 for a limited time.
Timing doesn't require users to manually operate timers. Instead, users' activities -- like editing documents, surfing the web, and playing games -- are tracked automatically and can be reviewed at a later time. The new version allows users to export their data as CSV files and improves the tracking performance.
The application is targeted at Mac users who are curious about how they spend time using their computer. Timing will give a detailed overview on how much time is spent playing games and browsing websites.
Quick Sprites available at the Mac App Store
Tellini has released Quick Sprites 1.1 (http://www.tellini.org/mac/quicksprites/) on the Mac App Store. Found in the Productivity category, it requires Mac OS X 10.6.6 or higher and costs US$8.99.
Quick Sprites is designed to simplify the creation and maintenance of CSS sprite sheets that enable you to optimize your websites. CSS sprites help reduce the number of HTTP requests that the browser needs to do to load and render a web page. Quick Sprites automatically packs your images so that the resulting sprite sheet uses the smallest possible area, according to the folks at Tellini. Quick Sprites can also further optimize the resulting image, saving extra bandwidth, they add.
Veprit Photo Sense 1.5.2 improves highlights handling, more
VeprIT has released Photo Sense 1.5.2, a new version of its photo enhancement software for Mac OS X and iOS. The upgrade offers: improved highlights handling, reduced artifacts appearing in some images; behavior improvements; and bug fixes.
° Automatically apply professional image enhancement techniques to multiple photos;
° Compare photos before and after processing, and choose which ones to save;
° Adjust processing options for selected photos to improve automatic results;
° Improve the composition by cropping and straightening;
° Apply various creative effects;
° Speed up the workflow by copying and pasting processing options, effects and crop and straighten settings between images;
° Convert image formats and resize (downsample) images.
Photo Sense can also be used as a batch image converter/resizer (down-sampler). For images of the same size, it can even be used to perform batch image cropping and straightening.
An evaluation version of Photo Sense 1.5.2 is available for download...
Maintain serves up a Cocktail for Lion
Maintain has released Cocktail 5.0, the latest version of Cocktail (http://www.maintain.se/c). It's compatible with Mac OS X 10.7 ("Lion").
Cocktail is a general purpose utility for Mac OS X that offers a variety of practical features designed to simplify the use of advanced UNIX function. Cocktail 5.0 (Lion Edition) requires Mac OS X/Mac OS X Server 10.7 or later and is tested for compatibility with Mac OS X/Mac OS X Server 10.7.1.
Cocktail (Snow Leopard Edition) for Mac OS X 10.6 and Cocktail (Leopard Edition) for Mac OS X 10.5 are available for download from the Maintain website. Cocktail is US$19 for a single user license and available for purchase from the Maintain website. The license is valid for both Lion and Snow Leopard editions of Cocktail. Cocktail (Leopard Edition) is distributed as freeware and doesn't require a license.
iPhone/iPod touch/iPad apps for Aug. 29
Here are the latest iPhone/iPod touch/iPod/iPad apps. You can find 'em at the Apple App Store (http://www.itunes.com/appstore/).
Prajnu has announced Visulax Sleep Aid for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. The US$0.99 app offers a way to combat insomnia, de-stress, and get a better night's sleep. Visulax Sleep Aid combines visualization, relaxation, and guided meditation.
Alexander Plahr has released MaritimeTrader 1.0, a turn-based strategy game for iOS devices. The free game is about the maritime transport business, offering players the experience of transporting goods around the globe.
StudyPad has introduced Splash Math Grade 1 ($4.99), which offers math worksheets for the iPad. Each app in the Splash Math series is based on common core standards covering all the math concepts taught in schools, including addition, time, money, measurements and more.
FilpoGames has launched Rhythm Repeat 1.0 for iOS, a $0.99 game that challenges players to follow and reproduce the flashing...
Lodsys may be in a 'panic' to keep Apple from...
In the latest filing by Lodsys, in response to the Apple motion to intervene in the Lodsys v. Combay case, Lodsys gives every indication "it is in a panic to keep Apple from intervening," according to Groklaw (http://macte.ch/nCRi4). Much of the document is redacted, "but despite that fact we can glean the sense that Apple's entry into the lawsuit spoils Lodsys's entire theory of the litigation, at least with respect to the Apple (and likely Google) developers," the article adds.
Lodsys is suing some iOS developers for using in-app purchasing systems that it claims violates patents it owns. The patent holding firm has been targeting small iOS developers with notices of patent infringement for providing in-app purchase and/or Apple App Store purchase links within their apps.
The company said developers had to obtain a license within 21 days or face the prospect of a lawsuit. Lodsys has been criticized by some for targeting app and website publishers instead of Apple itself.
Australia: Samsung not to sell or advertise Galaxy Tab before...
Samsung has agreed not to sell or advertise the Galaxy Tab 10.1 before Sept. 30 in Australia as part of an ongoing legal battle, reports the "Sydney Morning Herald" (http://macte.ch/SsZk4)
Apple will detail the specific patents involved in the case by this Friday and will provide a more comprehensive statement of facts by Sept. 5, the article adds. Samsung will provide points in answer by Sept. 16, with the case going to a formal hearing on Sept. 26 and 29. Top executives and inventors from both Apple and Samsung may appear in person or over video link to explain their patents, reports the "Herald."
Earlier this month it was announced that Apple had won an agreement from Samsung that the South Korean company won’t sell the newest version of its tablet computer in Australia until a patent lawsuit in the country is resolved.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 infringes 10 Apple patents, including the “look and feel,” and touchscreen technology of the iPad, Steven Burley, a lawyer for Apple,...
Rumors: look for an iOS-based Apple TV next year
The latest rumors -- courtesy of VentureBeat (http://macte.ch/uaHOF) -- about Apple making its own television sets say that the company is working on an iOS-based HDTV for 2012.
"Apple has been testing the waters with its AppleTV, a set-top box that provides access to movies and TV from iTunes as well as other online video content," says "VentureBeat." "The company has a number of partnerships with movie studios and television networks, giving it an impressive content library. And its lightweight iOS operating system seems ideally suited for consumer devices (the OS is already under the hood in AppleTV)."
Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster has repeatedly predicted that Apple will produce a television in late 2012 or early 2013. In an interview with "VentureBeat," Munster cited multiple sources, including component suppliers as well as an internal Apple source, to back up his theory. Munster predicts this will be an actual TV, not just a set-top box, and most likely running a version...
iPads deployed at University of Northern Kentucky
Another successful iPad deployment has been announced, this one at the University of Northern Kentucky (http://eloc.nku.edu/). They are one of the few Masters programs in the U.S. that are using all iPads for their courses.
Incoming students in the Northern Kentucky University Master of Science in Executive Leadership and Organizational Change (ELOC) program this fall will be the first cohort group (and NKU students) to receive iPads for use in the classroom.
The move is part of NKU's continued efforts to provide emerging mobile technologies that accommodate student expectations related to an anytime, anyplace teaching-learning process.
"Forward-thinking schools are focusing on e-learning," says Dr. Kenneth Rhee, director of the ELOC program within NKU's Department of Management. "We want to be at the front edge. There is a lot of potential for what this can do."
Each iPad, which is included in the ELOC program tuition, will be pre-loaded with program materials including...
iPhone 5 to keep screen size, return to metal chassis?
Despite rumors that the upcoming iPhone 5 would feature a 4.2-inch screen, "DigiTimes" (http://www.digitimes.com) says "upstream panel suppliers" vouch that the upcoming version of the Apple smartphone will still sport a display that's less than four inches.
Also, the iPhone 5's back design will be changed to a metal chassis instead of reinforced-glasses, the article adds. Other rumored specs of the next gen iPhone include an 8-megapixel camera and Full HD video recording.
UltraStudio 3D with Thunderbolt technology shipping
Blackmagic Design (http://www.blackmagic-design.com) has announced what it says is the world’s first video product with Thunderbolt technology. It's shipping and costs US$995.
Running at 10Gbps, Thunderbolt technology -- developed by Intel in cooperation with Apple -- can transfer a full-length HD movie in less than 30 seconds, according to Mooly Eden, general manager, PC Client Group, Intel. The vision for Thunderbolt technology (formerly codenamed “Light Peak”) is to move media faster, simplify connections between devices, and foster new and exciting ways to build and use computers, says Eden.
Combining high-speed data and HD video connections together onto a single cable is instrumental to achieving that vision. Thunderbolt technology delivers this via two communications methods, or protocols -- PCI Express for data transfer and DisplayPort for displays.
The UltraStudio 3D allows portable capture and playback with full resolution dual stream 3D support, 10-bit hardware architecture...
Tablet, eReader demographics changing
In the U.S., as recently as last summer, tablet and eReader owners tended to be male and on the younger side. But according to Nielsen’s (http://www.nielsen.com) latest, quarterly survey of mobile connected device owners, this is no longer the case.
Back in the third quarter of 2010 (Q3 2010), for example, 62% of tablet owners were under the age of 34 and only 10% were over the age of 55. By Q2 2011, only 46% of tablet owners were under the age of 34 and the percentage of those over 55 had increased to 19%.
Looking at the data by gender underlines key changes in the eReader category. Sixty-one percent of all eReader owners are now female, compared to a mere 46% in Q3 2010. (Smartphone owners are now evenly split between male and female and tablets remain primarily male.)