Total War: Shogun 2 ready for the Mac
Feral Interactive says the historical strategy game Total War: SHOGUN 2 – Fall of the Samurai is now available for the Mac.
Developed by Creative Assembly and published by SEGA for Windows, it's the standalone expansion pack for Total War: SHOGUN 2, brought to the Mac by Feral earlier this year. The game is available for download from a variety of digital partner sites worldwide including the Feral Store, Steam and the Mac App Store.
Here's how the game is described: "It is 1864 and Japan is under intense western pressure to open itself to foreign trade, heightening tensions between the isolationist Imperial forces and those loyal to the more outward-looking shogunate. Players will choose a side and deploy their mastery of real-time battle tactics and turn-based campaign strategy as all around them Japan hurtles into the modern age, a time of urgent political reform, dramatic social changes and rapid industrialization."
A premium version of the game containing all additional content...
SceneTool for OS X lets you turn 3D scenes to Swift/Objective C...
Wan Ahmad Lutfi has introduced SceneTool 1.0 (http://bijokmind.com/scenetool/), his new code generator tool for Mac OS X.
SceneTool turns simple 3D scenes into Swift or Objective C code, allowing developers to export code that can be used for iOS or OS X Xcode projects. Each object type have their own unique properties such as inner radius and outer radius for torus. Both image and color can be set as a material property. The 3D scene also can be modified by changing light, camera and floor properties.
Using SceneTool, users can create basic 3D scenes by using predefined object and export code to be used in OS X or iOS project. Each object type have their own unique properties such as inner radius and outer radius for torus. Using SceneTool, both image and color can be set as material property. The 3D scene also can be modified by changing light, camera and floor properties.
SceneTool requires Mac OS X Yosemite. It's free and available worldwide through the Mac App Store in the...
Tidy Up for Mac OS X gets a Yosemite-ish interface
Hyperbolic Software (www.hyperbolicsoftware.com) has announced Tidy Up 4.0, the latest version of the US$30 duplicate finder and disk tidying utility for Mac OS X 10.8 or later. The upgrade features a new interface and more. It's also ready for Mavericks.
Tidy Up locates duplicate items using a wide range of criteria including owner application, time created or modified, name, label, extension and content. Version 4.0 features include: a Mac OS X Yosemite-style interface; a search engine completely rewritten using the latest OS X technologies; 64-bit compliance; a new "view by duplicate" group; a new Quick "Auto check" feature; and new Smart Search methods.
Ohanaware releases Fun Card Studio 2 for OS X
Ohanaware has released a new version of their photo sharing application, Fun Card Studio. Fun Card Studio was designed to be a simple to use application, that can be used to combine photos with effects and text to create meme styled Post Cards.
Version 2 is a reboot of Fun Card Studio. This new version has been completely re-written from scratch, creating a brand new application with a modern interface and feature set to fit with Mac OS X Yosemite's look and feel.
Fun Card Studio 2 is available from the Ohanaware web site (www.ohanaware.com) for US$4.99. It requires Mac OS X 10.9 or later.
Sonnet introduces Fusion R400 RAID USB 3.0 Rackmount Storage...
Sonnet Technologies has introduced the Fusion R400 RAID USB 3.0, a four-bay, hardware RAID 5, rackmount storage system with a USB 3.0 interface.
The Fusion R400 RAID USB 3.0 integrates a high-performance RAID controller . Its USB 3.0 interface provides single-cable-to-host connectivity and a range of compatibility. Its also packs a compact design.
The Fusion R400 RAID USB 3.0 (part number FUS-R4BR5-0TB) is available now at an manufacturer's suggested retail price of US$349. More information on the product is available at http://tinyurl.com/qbygb6v .
Sample Logic releases Cyclone Retwisted
Sample Logic has released, Cyclone Retwisted (http://tinyurl.com/ko2ddak), the next generation of its Cyclone product. It's now equipped with Sample Logic's proprietary Step and FX Animator technology along with a new dual-voice additive synthesizer.
Cyclone Retwisted is designed as a one-stop shop for electronic sounds and a sample synth solution for Kontakt. The virtual instrument contains over 475 new instruments and multis ranging from multi-layer motion pads and cinematic harmonic instruments to dubstep inspired basses, electronic hybrid leads, and experimental drum kits.
Cyclone Retwisted also includes the original Cyclone 1.0 in its entirety, as well as the Glow Multi expansion pack, providing a grand total of 850-plus instruments and multis. The interface still includes Sample Logic’s signature Triggers, Wave, and LFOs, and now rises to new heights with several added features such as:
Cyclone Retwisted requires: Kontakt 5 Player (free) or rRetail version (sold separately) 5....
GraphicConverter for Mac OS X adds QR code creation
Lemke Software has announced GraphicConverter 9.5, an update to its image utility for Mac OS X. The new version includes several new and updated features such as QR code creation, and is a free update to all Version 9.x customers. Upgrades from older versions of GraphicConverter are available for $25.95.
GraphicConverter is an all-purpose, universal image editing program. It now features image conversion from more than 200 graphic file formats into almost 80 different file formats.
GraphicConverter 9.5 requires Mac OS X 10.7 or higher. It's available from Lemke Software online (http://www.lemkesoft.com/) and at the Mac App Store. The cost is US$39.95 for new users.
264 commercial use fonts added to Premium Fonts Collection
MacAppware has added 264 new commercial use fonts to its Premium Fonts collection for Mac users. Each font is in OpenType font format and can be used for any personal and business project.
Western European international character support is standard for every premium font and new fonts are delivered at no extra charge to Premium Fonts subscription customers. This collection now includes 147 original font families, with a total of 1,841 fonts in all.
The Mac App Store version includes the subscription to receive all new fonts released in the Premium Fonts collection. Premium Fonts has grown substantially in the past two years, beginning with only 54 font families and 702 total fonts. The fonts are compatible with Mac OS X 10.6 and higher.
The updated Premium Fonts collection is now available on the MacAppware website (www.macappware.com), or on the Mac App Store, for a limited time discount of US$29.99, a savings of 70% off the full price of $99. The Premium Fonts subscription is...
WordTarget for Mac OS X revved to version 1.2
KickCode (http://kickcode.com) has released WordTarget 1.2 for Mac OS X. The app sits in the menu bar and tracks a users word count across different applications.
Users receive a notification when they hit their target, and can start and stop tracking at any point. The app is on sale at a reduced price (US46.99 instead of $8.99) on the Mac App Store until Friday, Dec. 19. WordTarget requires Mac OS X 10.8 or newer.
The latest iOS apps for Dec. 16
Here are some of the latest apps available at the Apple App Store for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.
Top Apps & Games Group has announced Splash Burst. It's a free chain reaction puzzle game with 800 levels.
Pelfunc has released Heart Rate Touch. It's an US$2.99 optical heart rate monitor that uses light to track your blood.
Stickers has introduced VOOL. The free app lets you create and edit animated movies.
Short Bald and Lanky Productions have launched Huayu Messenger. It's a free messaging app that allows users to send a secret text message and picture to any of their phone contacts.
Illogical Games has unveiled Dead Hun. It's an action-RPG similar to the top-down shooter "Minigore" with a loot system similar to "Diablo" where players battle waves of zombies that swarm the city. The game takes place in the middle of the apocalyptic era where zombies have taken over the world. Dead Hun is free, but does offer in-app purchases.
Ricky Vuckovic has created Easy Jumping Game. It'...
24U Software releases 24U FM Bench 1.2
24U Software (http://www.24usoftware.com/) has released 24U FM Bench 1.2, an update of its benchmarking tool for optimizing FileMaker 13 product line and business processes.
24U FM Bench is designed to help developers with the whole optimization process from benchmarking through analyzing, identifying bottleneck, optimizing, and reporting results. Version 1.2 brings improved FileMaker Go measurement with maximum accuracy, compatibility across the whole FileMaker 13 product line, and other minor improvements.
On the Mac platform, 24U FM Bench requires Mac OS X 10.7 or higher, FileMaker Pro 12 or later, or FileMaker Server 12 or newer. It can be purchased either as a per-seat license or as a server license. By purchasing one server license you get the right to use 24U FM Bench for unlimited number of users connecting to a single FileMaker Server.
The 1.2 update is free for current customers. For others is there a free copy of FM Bench Detective by signing up for FileMaker performance...
Apple found not guilty in music antitrust lawsuit
Apple has won an antitrust trial as a U.S. jury decided the company didn't act improperly when it restricted music purchases for iPod users to Apple's iTunes digital store, reports Reuters (http://tinyurl.com/pa3mmwk).
The verdict was read in an Oakland, California federal court. The plaintiffs, a group of individuals and businesses who purchased iPods from 2006 to 2009, sought about $350 million in damages from Apple alleging the company unfairly blocked competing device makers.
This all goes back to a lawsuit filed in 2005 when Thomas Slattery sued Apple, alleging the company broke antitrust laws by using FairPlay, digital rights management technology, with iTunes so that purchased music will work only with its own music player, the iPod, freezing out competitors. Though most of the complaints were dropped, the case was combined with two other lawsuits.
The jury returned a verdict that basically states those iTunes updates offered meaningful improvements to Apple’s media player...
VERT is a new device for measuring jump data
VERT has released the VERT Wearable Jump Rate Monitor, a sports wearable that measures jump rate. The device pairs with an iOS app that can be monitored by coaches during use, and instantly provides jump rate, jump height and any additional jump-related measurements.
As an added benefit all users will have the ability to view and track VERT Jump data on smartwatches for review. VERT Jump retails for $124.99, and it is available now at www.myvert.com. The iOS app costs $99.99 and is available at the Apple App Store.
AAS releases Abstractions sound bank
Applied Acoustics Systems has released the Abstractions sound bank (http://tinyurl.com/mfsvdxp) for the Ultra Analog VA-2 synthesizer and AAS Player plug-ins in collaboration with artist and sound designer Richard Devine.
Abstractions is the third sound bank title by Devine in AAS’ Sound Bank Series following Microsound Textures for the Chromaphone creative percussion synthesizer and Harmonic Geometry for the String Studio VS-2 string modeling synthesizer. This collection of 127 signature sounds covers standard analog categories but revisited with Richard Devine’s unique aesthetics.
The Abstractions sound bank has a regular price of US$39. Howeveer, it's being offered for $19.50 until Jan. 16. The instant download delivery package includes both a Ultra Analog VA-2 bank file and the free AAS Player plug-in. The AAS Player plug-in runs on both Windows and Mac OS X and supports the VST, Audio Units, AAX Native, and RTAS plug-in formats.
Atama releases iOS and OS X SDK
Atama has released the Sesame2 Software Development Kit (SDK) for its Sesame2 Bluetooth 4.0 Wireless Lock. The kit enables 2-Factor authentication for iOS and OS X apps.
It can be used for apps that handle sensitive data and apps that require multi-user support in less secure environments. The SDK makes the integration of Atama's Bluetooth 4.0 Wireless Lock with iOS and OS X apps straightforward by handling all aspects of Bluetooth communication and more, according to the folks at Atama.
For apps that handle sensitive data, such as confidential commercial information or patient medical records protected by HIPAA, the SDK can be used to provide 2-Factor authentication by requiring a Sesame key to be nearby as well as a password before allowing a user to log into an app
Apps that require multi-user support in less secure environments can use a Sesame lock as a means to automatically identify a user as he gets close to the iPhone/iPad or Mac. The SDK makes the integration of Atama's...
4K video demand helps fuel DisplayPort standard
The Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA), developer of the DisplayPort standard (www.displayport.org), says reported that DisplayPort adoption, VESA membership and DisplayPort-related specification development have all increased over the past year.
This points to the growing demand for DisplayPort and related standards, fueled by displays with 4K and higher resolution, as well as smaller devices with more flexible connectivity. DisplayPort device certification grew to 1,395 devices to date in 2014, up from 805 devices at the beginning of the year.
In 2014, VESA added 13 new member companies for a total of 224 members. Also during this past year, VESA released several DisplayPort-related standards, including DisplayPort 1.3, DisplayPort Alt Mode on USB Type-C, DockPort and Display Stream Compression.
"DisplayPort was developed as a PC to monitor interface, and those markets are where it is currently seeing great success. DisplayPort penetration into PCs is expected to...
321soft releases Image Converter for Mac OS X
321Soft (http://www.321soft.com) has released Image Converter, a Mac OS X app provides a way to convert between various pictures. It requires Mac OS X 10.6.8 or higher.
It supports a variety of image formats — both common formats Like PNG, jpg, bmp, gif, or, through a professional digital camera the extracted RAW photo formats (CR2, NEF, etc), as well as the icon format. 321Soft Image Converter costs US$14.95 as single-user application. A demo is available for download.
128bit Technologies updates Free Fonts collection
128bit Technologies has released version 5.0 of their Free Fonts collection on the Mac App Store. Free Fonts: 450 Commercial Use OpenType Fonts adds over 100 brand new fonts.
These new fonts for creative Mac users boost the font count from 350 to 450 in the Mac App Store, and all fonts are available in OpenType font format for both personal and commercial use projects. The Free Fonts are also available on the MacAppware website (http://www.macappware.com) for download outside of the Mac App Store.
To get the full set of 623 fonts using the Mac App Store, customers need to first register to receive future updates of new fonts before receiving an email to download the 150 bonus fonts. Registration is optional, but you won't receive the additional fonts.
The Free Fonts version on the Mac App Store supports Mac OS X 10.6 (64-bit) and later. Once the fonts are saved to your Mac they can be used on any computer running Mac OS X 10.1 or later, or Windows XP and later. The Free Fonts version...
Disk Cleaner! for Mac OS X adds additional languages
Power APP (http://www.powerapp.ch) has introduced Disk Cleaner! 1.1 for OS X. It's an upgrade of the Mac app that cleans the hard disk from leftovers and unnecessary files.
Disk Cleaner can "intelligently" detect and remove browser cache files for all modern browsers. The app can remove application, caches, old log files, browser preview images and more. Version 1.2.0 adds additional languages, and now scans for leftovers from both iTunes and iOS.
The app requires Mac OS X Yosemite or later. It costs US$2.99 and is available worldwide exclusively through the Mac App Store in the Utilities category.
The latest iOS apps for Dec. 15
Here are some of the latest apps available at the Apple App Store for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.
Ratrod Studio has announced Snowboard Party. It's an US$1.99 snowboarding game.
XwaveSoft has introduced eXtra Voice Recorder. the $2.99 app is a combination of a audio recorder, a multi-functional audio editor, and an audio files manager.
Cubic Castles is a new, free multi-platform game that lets users design their own game levels and worlds. This virtual world is "massively multiplayer."
Ububble has launched Securify for iOS. The free app "brings emergency response into the 21st Century, enabling users to alert authorities within seconds."
Outbreak Alert! 4DX Games has unleashed The Falling Dead. It's a $0.99, zombie survival arcade-like shooter game.
Dejal Systems has launched Pack. It's a packing list app designed to help you get packed quickly and easily. Pack is free, but does have in-app purchases.
Dan Russell-Pinson has rolled out Off the Rails. The $0.99 game allows you to...
OWC in-line digital thermal sensor available for more iMacs
Other World Computing (http://www.macsales.com) has announced an expansion of the In-Line Digital Thermal Sensor HDD DIY Kits (http://tinyurl.com/ogeb2q9), with support for 2009 and newer iMac models, including the latest iMac Retina 5K display.
OWC’s in-line solution includes a custom hardware digital thermal sensor allowing a third-party 3.5-inch SATA hard drive to be properly installed in an iMac, enabling full compatibility with Apple Diagnostics and the iMac System Management Controller. A plug-and-play cable, the In-line Digital Thermal Sensor eliminates excessive fan noise and maintains proper system fan operation while requiring no software hacks.
Using an OWC Internal HDD DIY Kit, you can replace the original iMac hard drive with up to a 6TB hard drive (sold separately). The kit is available for immediate ordering at special "OWC Holiday Saver" pricing starting at US$57.
AccountEdge Pro 2015 gets serialized inventory, sales commission...
Acclivity has launched AccountEdge Pro 2015 in the US. It's the latest version of the small business accounting software for Mac OS X and Windows. Among the enhancements are serialized inventory and sales commission tracking.
AccountEdge Pro is accounting software with features ranging from general bookkeeping to inventory to payroll. It offers integration with AccountEdge Mobile. With Shopify syncing, users can sell their AccountEdge Pro inventory online.
AccountEdge Cloud is an add-on that lets users enter sales invoices, activity slips, and the ability for employees and contractors to enter in their timesheet for payroll purposes, all integrating back to AccountEdge Pro. Serialized inventory management allows a business to track serial numbers through the life cycle of its inventory, from purchase to sale including warranty. They can use manufacturer serial numbers or have AccountEdge create their own series of serial numbers.
AccountEdge Pro is available immediately from the...
Sparkle for Mac gets features for photographers, others
River Design has introduced Sparkle 1.1, an upgrade of the visual website builder for Mac OS X. It's compatible with Mac OS X 10.9 and higher and is optimized for Yosemite.
Sparkle translates any text and graphic layout to HTML. The app gives Mac users a great to build websites visually. Version 1.1 builds on the app's engine by adding features for photographers, film directors, graphic designers and small businesses.
Sparkle 1.1 is available at the Mac App Store for US$79.99. It's a free upgrade for registered users of version 1.0. A free trial limited to three pages is available from its official website (http://sparkle.cx).
Gartner: smartphone sales grew 20% in third quarter of 2014
Worldwide sales of mobile phones to end users were flat in the third quarter of 2014, according to Gartner (www.gartner.com). However, sales of smartphones to end users grew 20.3 percent to reach 301 million units.
"Sales of feature phones declined 25% in the third quarter of 2014 because the difference in price between feature phones and low-cost Android smartphones is reducing further," says Roberta Cozza, research director at Gartner. "In the third quarter of 2014, smartphones accounted for 66% of the total mobile phone market, and Gartner estimates that by 2018, nine out of 10 phones will be smartphones."
From a regional perspective, emerging markets exhibited some of the highest growths ever recorded with Eastern Europe and the Middle East and Africa achieving the highest increase in the third quarter of 2014, with sales of smartphones growing almost 50% year-over-year. Among the mature markets, the U.S. achieved the highest growth, with an 18.9 percent increase in the third...
Benroy Busines for Mac released
YZY SOFT (http://www.yzysoft.com) has released Benroy Business App, a Mac OS X app for organizing and tracking daily work in these business areas: sales, creative agencies, real estate companies, construction companies, photography, employment agencies, legal professionals and others. The most important information is in a single window.
Benroy Business is designed for managing contacts, projects, job orders, estimates, project discrepancies, leads, proposals, contracts, products, warehouses, incomes, expenses, payments, documents, tasks, events, and time sheets. Benroy Business normally costs US$99 as single-user application. However, there's a 30% discount until the end of 2014 by using the coupon code: END2014.
Sonnet Introduces New Family of Optical Thunderbolt Cables
Sonnet Technologies New Family of Optical Thunderbolt cables designed to connect computers and devices over longer distances in a wide variety of production environments. With support for both 20Gbps Thunderbolt 2 and 10Gbps Thunderbolt connections, the Sonnet Optical Thunderbolt Cables are "thin, lightweight, and durable, with performance equivalent to copper Thunderbolt cables at distances of up to 60 meters."
The Sonnet Optical Thunderbolt Cables are ideal for use in situations requiring the computer to be segregated from other equipment without a loss in functionality or data-transfer speed. One example is when a computer and other peripherals must be remotely located in a secure equipment room, with the cable running out to a desktop with a Thunderbolt dock that supports a display, mouse, keyboard, and other peripheral devices. Another example might be an audio production workflow that requires a particularly quiet operating environment. The longer optical Thunderbolt cable...
Xojo 2014 Release 3
Xojo Inc has released Xojo 2014 Release 3 -- a major release of their multi-platform rapid development tool. Xojo users can now build iOS apps in the same way desktop and web applications are created (e.g., native iOS applications). This latest release adds 160 improvements and over 20 new features.
Xojo 2014 Release 3 feature highlights include:
* New iOS framework
* New Text data type and supporting methods for improved text handling
* New Auto data type for storing any type or object
* New Xojo.Core classes that make creating international applications easier
* SSLSockets now support newer security protocols like TLS v1.1 and v1.2, and now defaults to TLS v1 instead of SSLv3
This latest release adds 160 improvements and over 20 new features. In addition to the new iOS framework, this release also adds improvements to the web framework and includes new classes that make creating international applications easier. Further, web applications can now respond to requests from search...
Apple releases iOS, Safari and Thunderbolt Display Updates
Apple releases iOS, Safari and Thunderbolt Display Updates
Apple has released three important updates.
iOS 8.1.2 which includes an array of security updates. Take note, however, over the air updates have proven a challenge for some. The download is large, and users tight on memory will find that they need to free up space before they can update.
Safari 8.0.2 has just been released and is recommended for all OS X Yosemite users for "usability, stability, and security" updates. Issues fixed include syncing across iCloud Drive, password, WebGL graphics on Retina Displays, importing from Firefox and more.
Thunderbolt Display Firmware Update 1.2 improves reliability when connecting to the display.
HP Printer Software Update 3.0 includes the latest suite of printers and scanner support from HP.
OWC Announces Industry’s First SSD Upgrade for 2013 Mac Pro
OWC Announces Industry’s First SSD Upgrade for 2013 Mac Pro
Other World Computing (OWC) announced their 1TB and 2TB Aura SSD DIY upgrade for the 2013 Mac Pro. The new Aura SSD for Mac Pro "delivers the capacity and performance Mac Pro users need for high-speed production workflows in audio, film, photo, and graphics. OWC’s new Aura SSDs for Mac Pro 2013 transfers speeds up to 730 MB/s and it is engineered for Mac so there is no extra software or hacks needed.
OWC says the custom-engineered DIY Solution with 1TB and 2TB Capacities will deliver up to 8x the Capacity of Factory Shipping Models. You can use your original SSD as a portable USB 3.0 drive with an enclosure from OWC as well.
Aura SSD upgrades for the 2013 Mac Pro are available for pre-order starting at $899 for the 1TB model and $1449 for the 2TB model. Contact them at 1-815-333-5023 or https://eshop.macsales.com/preorder/OWC-Aura-SSD-for-Mac-Pro/
Alsoft Releases DiskWarrior 5
Aloft's DiskWarrior is the powerful disk repair and recover tool for OS X. Having been around since long before OS X, techs and users have learned to use and rely on the simple interface that does a lot.
Alsoft says "DiskWarrior reads the damaged directory and finds all salvageable files and folders and builds a new error-free, optimized directory for you to use. DiskWarrior verifies your repaired directory to ensure it is error free. It then uses a fail-safe method of replacing the damaged directory to ensure that interruptions such as power outages won't harm your data. File paths, permissions, invalid plists and other problems are tested to ensure your files can be found when you need them.”
The new version 5 includes many features that users have been long waiting for including:
- Ships on a bootable flash dirive to repair your startup disk
- New DiskWarrior Recovery Maker.
- Runs from OS X Recovery partition.
- Repairs partition table damage.
- Includes support for...
IN-SRC releases FrontLog 1.1.1 for Mac OS X
IN-SRC has announced FrontLog 1.1.1 (www.thefrontlog.com), an update to their task management tool for Mac OS X.
Designed for collaboration, it helps users organize their tasks through the use of logbooks. Logbooks can be easily shared, assigned and updated between other team members as well as synched across both iOS and OS X devices.
The free version of FrontLog is best for small teams and has 300M storage. For larger teams and storage, FrontLog has upgraded Standard and Pro logbook plans available. The app is available at the Mac App Store in the Productivity category.
The latest iOS apps for Dec. 8
Here are some of the latest apps available at the Apple App Store for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.
Box of Frogs Media has published Roobarb & Custard: When Custard was Grounded. Actress Tamsin Greig injects her unique narrative for this US$3.99 Roobarb and Custard app book.
You Tell Me Stories (YTMS) has announced Little Red Hen with WordWinks and Retell, Record & Share ($2.99). It's the sixth illustrated book app in the You Tell Me Stories Library. Based on the classic folk tale, Little Red Hen encourages kids to participate with the use of WordWinks-questions. They can also retell, record and share the story in their own voice.
Wildwood Resources has announced CREATEit for the iPad. The $2.99 app lets you produce visual images that you can share with your friends.
Ultralab has introduced Ultrapop. It's a $0.99 a collection of psychedelic filters inspired by pop art and tropical cocktails that can be applied to photos.
Audio Switcher adds support for Yosemite's Dark Mode
Spike Software has announced Audio Switcher 2.0.4, an update to its menubar applet utility for Mac OS X.
Audio Switcher allows you to switch your audio input and output between different audio devices. It supports a range of devices, as well as the built-in audio hardware of your Mac desktop or laptop. Version 2.0.4 offers improved support for Mac OS X Yosemite's Dark Mode, a new menu bar icon and a menu option for opening the System Sound Preferences applet.
Audio Switcher requires Mac OS X 10.7 or later. Version 2.0.4 costs US$4.99 and is available worldwide through the Mac App Store in the Utilities category. Current users can receive the free update via the Mac Store. Visit Spike Software online (http://www.spikesoft.net) for more information, support and to leave feedback.
Apple supporting Hour of Code project
Apple is supporting the Hour of Code project by offering lessons at its Apple Stores around the world.
The Hour of Code is a week-long event that runs in conjunction with Computer Science Education Week from Dec. 8-14. Go to http://code.org for more info.
Launched in 2013, Code.org is a non-profit dedicated to expanding participation in computer science by making it available in more schools, and increasing participation by women and underrepresented students of color. Their vision "is that every student in every school should have the opportunity to learn computer science."
Former Apple exec sentenced for conspiracy
A former Apple exec who sold some of the company's secrets to suppliers will serve a year in prison and repay US$4.5 million for his crimes, reports the AP (http://tinyurl.com/m8y4x4v).
Paul S. Devine was sentenced in San Jose federal court more than three years after he pleaded guilty to wire fraud, conspiracy and money laundering. The U.S. Attorney's office announced Devine's penalty Friday, but declined to explain the reason for the lengthy delay in his sentencing. Devine faced up to 20 years in prison.
DRM Converter updated with OS X Yosemite compatibility
AppleMacSoft DRM Converter (http://tinyurl.com/8y7fcyq) for Mac, a DRM removal software that designed for easily converts iTunes DRM protected music files to unprotected audio files ready for use on any computers or mobile music devices, has been updated to version 3.9.1. It adds Mac OS X Yosemite compatibility and fixed the issue that iTunes fails to launch on Yosemite.
DRM Converter 3 converts any song that can be played with iTunes to MP3, M4A, AAC, WAV etc for use with iPad, any other MP3 player, CD player, mobile phone or personal computer. With version 3.9.1, users can also convert audiobooks from the Audible format to more universal formats so they can be played on devices that don't interface with Audible.
DRM Converter 3.9.1 for Mac is a free upgrade for all registered users. The program requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher. It costs US$39.95.
OWC announces 1TB Mercury Electra 6G SSD
Other World Computing (OWC) has announced a new 1TB OWC 2.5-inch Mercury Electra 6G SATA SSD. It's designed for Mac or PC systems; no extra software or hacks are needed.
According to OWC (http://www.macsales.com), the US$499Mercury Electra 6G SATA SSD offers sustained transfer rates up to 535/443MBps read/write. It's designed for do-it-yourself installation with step-by-step install videos.
“At OWC, we’re always trying to give our customers more. More capacity, greater performance and exceptional reliability," says said Larry O’Connor, founder and CEO, OWC. "Our new 1.0TB Mercury Electra 6G SSD raises the bar for high-performance SSDs,” “At twice the previous max-capacity, it’s now an even better drive upgrade solution, and always comes backed by our famous 24/7 customer support.”
Absolute Software expands support for Device Enrollment Program
Absolute Software Corp. (www.absolute.com) has announced full support for Mac OS X Yosemite with Absolute Manage 6.7.
This release includes full support for Mac computers within the Apple Device Enrollment Program. This experience enables Absolute customers to remotely provision employer, and employee-owned Macs as part of the standard device setup process, ensuring all new Macs are registered and compliant from the very first moment they're put into use.
Absolute Manage 6.7 is available now. The release also includes additional enhancements, as well as compatibility with the newest operating systems. The InstallEase software repackaging tool has also been updated to support the latest Mac and Windows operating systems, available as a free download at Absolute Software online.
Logo Pop Lite for OS X adds pre-designed logo graphics
128bit Technologies has announced Logo Pop Lite 1.1, an update to its vector-based logo design app for Mac OS X.
The software allows you to create a professional looking vector based logo, and and then use it online or in print with support for all popular image formats including transparent PNGs. Version 1.1 adds new pre-designed logo graphics and templates, and fixes a bug in the Graphics preview window.
Logo Pop Lite 1.1 is available on the MacAppware website (www.macappware.com) and through the Mac App Store in the Graphics & Design category. It's available for US$1.99 for a limited time.
URL Extractor for Mac OS X upgraded to version 4.4
Tension Software has released URL Extractor X 4.4. The Mac OS X app extracts email address and generic URLs from files on the HD or directly from the web using a list of "starting" web addresses and working unattended after the
URL Extractor can extract thousands of URLs from the web starting from a single web page and using "cross navigation" and extraction. In version 4.4, each URL is collected with the source URL (the URL from where it was extracted) listed in another column. The new version also adds advanced URL export capabilities, the ability to specify a custom client app name to declare connecting to the server, and layout adjustments.
URL Extractor requires Mac OS X 10.9 or higher and costs US$50. It's available at the Tension Software website (www.tensionsoftware.com) and the Mac App Store.
The latest iOS apps for Dec. 4
Deadpan Dodo Art Factory has announced Bands, Singers & Songs Quiz. The goal of the free game is to discover the US or UK singer or music band using five provided song tips as help. The player has to type the missing singer or band using the jumbled letters, and try to work their way through all 30 levels of difficulty.
ZealTopia Interactive has released Noda. It's a free combination of a number puzzle game with the swipe-and-connect game mechanics. In Noda, each level comprises of a board with dots on it. Some are empty, while some of them have numbers. Swipe from dots to dots in order to manipulate numbers. Form the correct number on the correct dots, under limited number of moves.
Wimlog has introduced vPhotoGrid. The free app lets you convert a short iPhone video into photo grid, then merge the photo grid back to the video. This photo grid can be shown as the thumbnail of the saved video. Also, the photo grid can be further edited; you can draw, write text and put image...
Red Giant Shooter Suite 12.6.1 keeps RED camera media in sync
The Red Giant Universe (www.redgiant.com) is expanding again with the the latest update to the Shooter Suite, a collection of purpose-built applications that give directors of photography, videographers, shooters and filmmakers the automation and workflow capabilities to offload, analyze, touch up and synchronize digital media destined for post.
Headlining the Shooter Suite 12.6.1 release is PluralEyes 3.5.5 support for RED camera media. PluralEyes support for RED media ensures users can quickly sync multi-camera and dual-system audio production media shot on RED cameras. The new PluralEyes update even supports sync automation for spanned RED media, treating multiple files as a single logical clip.
The update also enhances the overall export workflow and includes a new welcome video tutorial to help new users start using PluralEyes faster than ever before. In addition to the new PluralEyes update, the Red Giant Shooter Suite includes a number of improvements to the Offload,...
LA's Palms Middle School uses crowdfunding to buy new Macs
Palms Middle School in West Los Angeles has a full complement of computers in its library. That's the good news. The bad news is that all of the computers are hopelessly outdated (see photo).
"Our current computers are ridiculously slow, and some don't even work," said Keith McKnight, a member of the Friends of Palms, a nonprofit organization that includes parents, friends, and families of children who attend Palms Middle School."It's frustrating for students to try to do class assignments on equipment that takes many minutes to access websites or print documents. Due to budget constraints in our school district, replacing these old, outdated computers will take years, if ever."
So McKnight and several other parents are talking the matter into their own hands. They have launched an Indiegogo campaign to raise US$20,437, enough to purchase 13 Apple iMac computers with a speed of 2.7 Ghz. This is the minimum specification required by the Los Angeles Unified School District.
Belkin releases new iPad keyboards
Belkin has released new keyboards for the iPad Air 2: the QODE Ultimate Pro Keyboard (pictured) and the QODE Ultimate Keyboard ($129.99). Both are designed specifically for the iPad Air 2 and are available exclusively at AT&T and Belkin.com.
Designed for users who want both a protective case and a keyboard, but not always at the same time, the US$149.99 QODE Ultimate Pro features a detachable back case that makes it simple to remove from the keyboard, says Ana Hory, the director of product management for Belkin’s QODE keyboard business.
The case portion is compatible with the Apple Smart Cover for full dual-sided protection when the keyboard isn’t in use. Thanks to its detachable case, the QODE Ultimate Pro also features both portrait or landscape modes for more viewing options than traditional clamshell keyboard cases.
Belkin completely redesigned the keyboard layout of the QODE Ultimate Pro, making it an iPad keyboard case on the market with the same number of keys as a laptop...
Cinematica for Mac OS X revved to version 2.3
Xeric Design (www.xericdesign.com) has launched Cinematica 2.3, an upgrade to its video management app for Mac OS X. It lets you manage your video library in detail, keeping track of dozens of properties for each and every file.
With Cinematica, you can sort and search by multiple criteria as well as by technical properties. Version 2.3 adds an option to toggle folder file counts and adds an option for an "Extra Large" storyboard frame size. Smart collections can now include "Keyword" and "Path" criteria. The keyword menu is now sorted alphabetically. Unused keywords are now removed from the database and keyword menu.
Cinematica 2.3 requires Mac OS X 10.8 or higher. Single user copies may be purchased online for US$24.95. Five user copies are available for $39.95. Upgrades from version 1.x start at $12.95.
SuperSync for Mac OS X gets improved network security
SuperSync (http://www.supersync.com/) -- Mac OS X compatible software that acts as a music collection’s central hub, retrieving, organizing, and syncing all music and movie files across machines and disk drives in order to create one consistent, complete music library -- has been updated to version 6.1.
The upgrade adds improved network security and Mac OS X support. Users can now visually compare, access, sync, and merge iTunes libraries including music, audio files, video files, podcasts, and playlists across multiple Macintosh, Windows, NAS, iPhone, iPad, and iPod devices.
With SuperSync, users can retrieve a song from a laptop, play or download a song from a home computer while at the office, upload a new album from the road, or back-up an entire music library on a new computer or network drive. It allows visual comparison of two music libraries locally or over the net. With this feature, users can see what music is located in each library. They can select the tracks they want...
The latest iOS apps for Dec. 3
Here are some of the latest apps available at the Apple App Store for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.
FAME has announced D-Cubes. It's a $1.99 puzzle game in which you must swap the colored cubes so that their sum equals the number of a silver cube and complete each face as fast as possible.
Residents of greater San Diego are invited to connect with their community through Rocket, a new social network for urban discovery from Team Rocket. With the free app, users can get photographic insights into what's happening in their city and where the best local hotspots are.
Liber Primus Games has launched Naborian Saga. It's a free, epic fantasy story that writes itself as you play. It's written by award winning novelist Francis Hora and Dr. Tom Pollak, a professional novelist and former editor of "Dragon," theDungeon’s and Dragon’s role playing game magazine.
Dreapp Studio has introduced AnaDraw. It's a free app for drawing anamorphic art.
Oleh Yudin has unveiled GeoCon. The US$0.99 app...
PCI Geomatics releases Python Scripts for use in Geomatica 2014
PCI Geomatics, a developer of remote sensing and photogrammetric software and systems, has released customized Python scripts to be used in conjunction with the company’s latest release of Geomatica.
Geomatica 2014 offers support for scripting of processing algorithms in the Python language and is available as an alternative to Geomatica’s proprietary EASI scripting environment. Python Scripting also allows for customizable scripting to combine image processing with other tasks to streamline data management applications, generate intelligent business products, or customize output for a variety of GIS applications.
A number of scripts on PCI Geomatics’ GitHub page are specifically designed for use in version 10.2.1 of Esri’s ArcGIS software. The scripts released today support Python 2.7 and are available, free of charge, at http://tinyurl.com/m548okj .
OWC ships 1TB Aura 6G SSD upgrade for MacBook Pros
Other World Computing (OWC) has announced a new 1TB OWC Aura SSD specifically developed for upgrading the capacity and speed of 2012-Early 2013 MacBook Pros with Retina Display.
It delivers peak transfer rates up to 555/530 MB/s read/write for high-speed production, audio, film, photo and graphic workflows, says Larry O'Connor, founder and CEO of OWC. It's engineered for the Mac, so no extra software or hacks is needed.
The Aura SSD is built for do-it-yourself installation and comes with step-by-step install videos. Also, you can use your original SSD as a portable USB 3.0 drive.
OWC’s Aura SSDs for MacBook Pro with Retina Display (2012-Early 2013) are available in a variety of configurations. Go to http://tinyurl.com/myrw3e3 for more info.
MacMate updates its cloud service packages
MacMate (http://www.macmate.me), a cloud service for Mac users, has announced three major updates and releases to their package: Web Builder Live, Wordpress M3, as well as increasing features across all the packages.
Along with the launch of Web Builder Live and Wordpress M3, MacMate have beefed up all three packages with extra features, and more cloud space. Web Builder Live is included free on all MacMate packages. Now everyone can create a free website. MacMate Lite now features: Web Builder Live, Galleries, Cloud disk, Email and Filesharing.
MacMate has also added Wordpress M3 to their premium MacMate Pro. WordPress M3 is a fully managed Wordpress solution.
MacMate Lite is the new free version. MacMate Classic costs US$5.75 per month, and MacMate Pro is $8.25per month.