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Apr 11
Has the PC industry bottomed out?

According to data released by Gartner this week, global PC shipments declined by 1.7% in the first quarter of 2014. While a few years ago, this number would have been considered catastropic, now it's actually good news. As a matter of fact, it's the smallest decline the PC industry has suffered since early 2012.

According to Gartner, the end of Windows XP support in early April has boosted replacement buys and could continue to do so in the current quarter. While it's unlikely that PC sales will suddenly start growing again, the trend of the past few quarters suggests that the industry may finally have bottomed out and sales might stabilize around the current level. The graph is courtesy of Statistica (http://tinyurl.com/l9eogdr).

| Read more »
Apr 11
Apple updates Xcode developer tool to version 5.1.1

Apple has served up an update (version 5.1.1) to its free Xcode developer tool for OS X and iOS for iOS and OS X. The upgrade includes software development kits for OS X 10.9 Mavericks, OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion, and iOS 7.1.

Xcode is designed to make it easy for developer to analyze their code, monitor performance, and test their apps, Xcode 5.1.1 is available at the Mac App Store and requires Mac OS X 10.8.4 or higher.

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Apr 11
LinkOptimizer for Adobe InDesign gets maintenance upgrade

 Zevrix Solutions (www.zevrix.com) has launched LinkOptimizer 4.8.13, a maintenance update to its workflow automation solution for Adobe InDesign.

The software allows you to reduce the size of InDesign links and speed up processing by eliminating excess image data. It also performs image color conversion and sharpening, converts file formats and more. The new version improves the app's startup process and ensures that LinkOptimizer menu in InDesign can be created when multiple versions of InDesign are open.

LinkOptimizer can be purchased from the Zevrix website for US$259.95 (there's a "lite" version for $179.95) as well as from authorized resellers. A demo is available for download. The update is free for LinkOptimizer 4.x users and $130 to upgrade from previous versions. LinkOptimizer is available for Mac OS X 10.5-10.9 and works with Adobe InDesign and Photoshop CS3-CC.

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Apr 11
Cocktail 7.4 (Mavericks Edition) adds support for Retina...

Maintain has served up Cocktail 7.4 (Mavericks Edition), the latest maintenance update for users running OS X Mavericks.

Cocktail is a general purpose utility for OS X that lets users clean, repair and optimize their Macs. Cocktail's features are arranged into five categories that helps you manage various aspects of your computer. This version adds Retina support and OS X 10.9.3 compatibility. It also improves application launch time, adds ability to change default screenshot filename and ability to remove date and timestamp from screenshot filenames.

Cocktail 7.4 (Mavericks Edition) requires OS X Mavericks 10.9 to run. Cocktail (Mountain Lion Edition) for OS X 10.8, Cocktail (Lion Edition) for OS X 10.7 and Cocktail (Snow Leopard Edition) for OS X 10.6 are available for download from Maintain website (http://www.maintain.se). Cocktail costs US $19 for a single user license.

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Apr 10
Microlab announces wireless speaker/subwoofer system

Microlab has announced the FC60BT HA audio wireless Bluetooth/NFC 2.1 Subwoofer Speaker System, featuring the company's patented HC2D Technology, a subwoofer, and two stereo satellite SQ speakers.

The system serves up 105-watt output with EQ parameter for automatically balanced sound, a 360 degree remote control, and white acrylic styling. The speakers are "clear, see-through" models, and the subwoofer has a Lycosa mirrored design. The remote controls on/off, input choice (Bluetooth, NFC, or optical), volume, bass, pause/stop, and track selection.

Priced at US$449, the Microlab FC60BT will be available next month. For more info go to http://www.microlab.com .

| Read more »
Apr 10
Macware releases Alphabet Art + Numbers Pack

Macware has released Alphabet Art + Numbers, a graphic content pack for Mac and Windows systems. It's filled with over 2,000 PNG images.

Alphabet Art + Numbers features a variety of images based on every letter of the alphabet and every number. The royalty-free images can be used for any project with no restrictions.

For a limited time, Macware is offering the pack for US$4.99; that's 75% off the retail price. Go to http://tinyurl.com/mbmjve5 for more info.

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Apr 10
Gomo now available at the Mac App Store

Fishcow Studio and Daedalic Entertainment have teamed up for Gomo, a point and click adventure game. It costs US$7.99 and is available at the Mac App Store.

Here's how Gomo is described: "Gomo is a hand-drawn exploration-game, featuring its very own art style. Players take control of Gomo, who's out to rescue his dog Dingo from an alien abduction. A great adventure awaits Gomo and the player, as they point, click and puzzle their way through the comic-style world.

"There are many obstacles to face and overcome with creative solutions, like, for example, a self-made balloon. Gomo's world is also full of secrets, waiting to be discovered. The game is about gameplay and problem solving, focusing on puzzles and exploration in a visually unique world."

| Read more »
Apr 10
Demigods comes to the Mac

Realore has released Demigods (Premium) 1.0, a resource management game for Mac OS X. It's available for Mac OS X 10.6.6 or higher at the Mac App Store.

Here's how the game is described: "Demigods takes players on an exciting journey through the ancient world. This time players will be able to visit Greece. In Realore's latest casual strategy title players meet with a trio of heroes: beautiful and clever Leada, mighty Protus and nimble Adoris. Upon the call of the god of the Ocean they embark on a quest to help the titans who hold the sky on their shoulders.

"It turns out someone tries to sabotage the giants' noble mission. In their journey three brave heroes will visit amazing landmarks of the ancient world, encounter beautiful mythical creatures and make friends with gods themselves. In Demigids players control three very different characters. Each of them has unique special abilities. When cleverly used these magical skills synergise and ease players' progress...

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Apr 10
These countries are the most eager for Google's user data

Google released its latest Transparency Report this week, in which the company discloses how many user data requests it received from law enforcement agencies around the world.

U.S. government agencies are by far the most eager for Google's user data. In 2013, they filed 21,492 requests with Google, 83% of which the search giant at least partially complied with. Today's chart is furnished by Statistica (http://tinyurl.com/m9qstwa).

| Read more »
Apr 10
Insights for Mac OS X revved to version 3.1

KnowledgeMiner Software (http://www.knowledgeminer.eu) has released Insights 3.1, it's data mining app for Mac OS X (10.7 or later).

The upgrade adds auto-updating of models for forecasting of market prices, market demand, sales figures, or energy load. Users now can run simulations on historical data stored in Excel for backtesting or use it on real-time data for continuous forecasting of processes several steps ahead. All results are reported and stored in Excel for further use or workflow integration.

Insights 3.1 is available as a free version exclusively from the KnowledgeMiner Software website. Insights 3.1 Advanced and Pro, as well as academic versions, can be purchased by contacting KnowledgeMiner Software directly.

| Read more »
Apr 10
Scorpion Research releases Scorpion BarCode 2.50 for Mac OS X

Scorpion Research (http://www.scorpionresearch.com) has announced Scorpion BarCode 2.50, an update to its barcode creation software for Mac OS X. Scorpion

BarCode helps you create and print major barcode symbologies in EPS or PDF file formats. You can integrate barcodes into database, spreadsheet and word processor applications. A command line version is also provided to build scripted solutions. Version 2.50 is designed for OS X 10.9 Mavericks but works with OS X 10.6 or later.

Scorpion BarCode 2.50 costs US$165 for a single user license. A demo is available for download.

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Apr 09
HEX announces the Hayward Collection of bags, cases

HEX has released the Hayward Collection of bags, cases, and carry-alls. The collection features a water resistant, premium waxed canvas outer shell in an "earthy" horizontal stripe combined with coated canvas and genuine leather trims, says HEX co-founder Dan Maravilla.

The Hayward Collection features bags, cases and more for the iPhone 5/5s, iPad mini, iPad Air, and laptops. Prices range from US$34.95 to $99.95. Go to www.shophex.com for more info.

| Read more »
Apr 09
U.S. teens prefer Instagram over Twitter, Facebook

According to PiperJaffray's latest report on the preferences of American teens, Instagram has leapfrogged Facebook and Twitter in popularity among teenagers. According to the report, 30 percent of U.S. teens named Instagram the most important social network, while Facebook and Twitter were chosen by 23% and 27%, respectively.

Especially Facebook has recently lost popularity among younger audiences. A year ago, 33% of teens had named it as their favourite. Many saw Facebook's acquisition of Instagram as an attempt to re-connect with the youth. If that was the case, Instagram appears to have been a good choice. Today's chart is courtesy of Statistica (http://tinyurl.com/ogda87e).

| Read more »
Apr 09
Nightmares from the Deep: the Siren's Call comes to the Mac

G5 Entertainment and Artifex Mundi have brought the "Nightmares from the Deep: The Siren's Call" to the Mac. It's available at the Mac App Store.

Here's how the game is described: "When Sarah Black, curator at the Caribbean Naval Museum, receives a mysterious package, she is unwittingly drawn into an ancient conflict. As she begins to remove an artifact from the package, assailants instantly descend on the museum and snatch it. In disbelief, Sarah realizes that yet again she is falling headfirst into a nightmare from the deep! Soon she finds herself on the shores of Kingsmouth, a forgotten fishing village with an incredible secret.

"A would-be messenger reveals the sad truth: he and the town's other denizens are gradually turning into ghoulish, mutated ocean creatures. And this curse was cast by none other than Mayor Murray and the old sea-devil himself, Davy Jones! Answer the siren's call to save this beleaguered village and defeat Davy Jones, Mayor Murray and his...

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Apr 09
NAB: Blackmagic announces 10 new products

Blackmagic Design (http://www.blackmagicdesign.com) has announced 10 new products at this year's National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show, including new camera models, six new Ultra HD product lines (including the world’s first 12G-SDI product with the Teranex Express), the latest version of Resolve and the introduction of our Cintel Film Scanner.

Following is a list of the products and their summary by Blackmagic:

Blackmagic URSA - A new high end digital film camera designed to revolutionize workflow on set. Built to handle the ergonomics of large film crews as well as single person use, URSA has multiple accessories built in, including a massive 10 inch fold out on set monitor, large user upgradable Super 35 global shutter 4K image sensor and internal dual RAW and Apple ProRes recorders.

DaVinci Resolve 11 - A major upgrade with more than 100 new editing and color...

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Apr 09
24U Software releases 24U SimpleSound Plug-In 3.0.2

24U Software has rolled out 24U SimpleSound Plug-In 3.0.2 for FileMaker Pro 13.

The  plug-in can be used to give users and developers the possibility to have custom sound effects, background music and more audio for the resonant databases. It allows users to obtain useful information about the sound file. 24U SimpleSound Plug-In 3.0.2 is a maintenance update recommended for all users.

24U SimpleSound Plug-In 3.0.2 requires Mac OS X 10.7 and FileMaker Pro 11 or newer. This update is free of charge for all registered users of 24U SimpleSound Plug-In 3.x. A single-user license is US$37. A demo is available for download. Go to http://www.24usoftware.com/ for more info.

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Apr 09
Data Extractor for Mac OS X gets improved auto-detection of file...

Tension Software (www.tensionsoftware.com) has updated Data Extractor, its OS X tool for extracting data from files and collecting them in exportable tables, to version 1.3.1 The new version sports improved auto-detection of file encoding to extract (UTF8, ASCII, UTF16, UTF32, OLD MAC OS 9) and others.

Data Extractor 1.3.1 requires Mac OS X 10.8 or higher. It costs US$40 and is available from both the Mac App Store and the Tension Software website.

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Apr 09
Hyberbolic Software upgrades Quick Print for Mac OS X

Hyperbolic Software has introduced a maintenance update (version 1.0.6) of Quick Print, an utility that allows you to print without opening the native application. The utility also provides a range of printing options.

With Quick Print, you can apply filters and effects to images, or print a text file with a different font size, without modifying the original file. The tool also allows you to print any image or formatted text copied to the clipboard and, if an item is selected, the information of the file.

Other features include the ability to print applications' recently opened files, directly accessible from the Quick Print window, and to print a folder as a list of contents. Quick Print also allows to print any image or formatted text copied to the clipboard and, if an item is selected, the information of the file (date created and modified, location path, etc.). When an unsupported item is selected, the application shows the Quick Look preview, which can be...

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Apr 08
PCalc updated, now available at the Mac App Store

TLA Systems has announced PCalc 4.0, an update to their scientific calculator for Mac OS X. The company took the latest code from the iOS version and ported it back to the Mac. It has every feature from the iOS version, and new ones, including:

° The ability to show multiple lines on the display, including the RPN stack;

° An optional "Ticker Tape" that shows a history of recent calculations underneath the main display;

° Editable user functions and conversions, which sync via iCloud with all your other Macs and iOS devices;

° Redesigned tape and register windows that can be torn off from the main calculator and resized;

° Smart searching for conversions, constants, and functions;

° Enhanced AppleScript support to call any command, perform conversions, run functions, and apply constants;

° All the keyboard layouts from the iPhone and iPad versions;

° All the themes too, including the iOS 7 style Samurai and Samurai Night...

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Apr 08
P22 Type Foundry announces the Wedge font

The P22 Type Foundry and the International House of Fonts (IHOF) have announced Wedge, a font by architect Bruce Rotherham. The design of the font purportedly takes the history of the Roman letter into full consideration.

Rotherham (1926-2004) was inspired by Herbert Bayer's 'universal alphabet' created at the Bauhaus in 1927. While he admired Bayer's pure geometry, Rotherham felt it was "virtually unreadable." The Bauhaus-inspired inclination for architectural publications to use sans serif faces provoked Rotherham to consider how a readable Roman book face might be approached using some of Bayer's same principles of simplification, but also retracing the evolution and use of the Roman form in an analytic manner.

The Wedge alphabet was started in 1947 when Rotherham was an architecture student at the University of Auckland. In 1958, after years of development and consultation with his father, who was a master printer, Rotherham approached Monotype to consider...

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Apr 08
Adobe Lightroom Mobile brings photo tools to the iPad

Adobe has announced the availability of Lightroom mobile, a companion app to Lightroom desktop software, only available as part of Adobe Creative Cloud. The new Lightroom mobile app brings Lightroom tools to the iPad.

It delivers photography essentials – such as non-destructive processing of files – and utilization of new Smart Preview technologies to the Apple tablet. Lightroom mobile is built on a synchronization architecture, designed specifically for photos, and provides the most efficient way to manage and edit images across desktops, mobile devices and the Web.

Lightroom mobile is available as part of the Adobe Creative Cloud Photoshop Photography Program. For USD$9.99 per month, photographers have access to Lightroom 5 and Photoshop CC on the desktop as well as Lightroom mobile on iPad. Go to www.adobe.com/go/lrmobile for more info.

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Apr 08
Zevrix PDF Checkpoint 1.6.5 delivers activation fixes

Zevrix Solutions (www.zevrix.com) has announced PDF Checkpoint 1.6.5, a maintenance update to its PDF preflight and conversion solution for Mac OS X.

The software automatically preflights, converts to images, splits and optimizes Adobe PDF files. The program is equally suitable to process hundreds of files as well as single PDF documents. The new version addresses an issue in which PDF Checkpoint users could not activate their registered software on certain systems.

PDF Checkpoint can be purchased from the Zevrix Solutions website for US$49.95, as well as from authorized resellers. PDF Checkpoint is bundled with free Graphic Inspector software (a $40 value). The update is free to licensed users. A demo is available for download. PDF Checkpoint requires Mac OS X 10.5-10.9 (some features require Mac OS X 10.7 or later).

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Apr 08
EditShare's MAM, Ark solutions now integrate with iAvid...

EditShare says its Flow Media Asset Management (MAM) and Ark archiving/backup solutions now now integrate with the Avid ISIS 5500/5000 and 7500/7000 shared storage families. The new integration lets Avid ISIS facilities add EditShare asset management, ingest and archiving tools to their workflow.

EditShare Flow’s integrated asset management and ingest capabilities turn Avid or EditShare storage systems into end-to-end file-based workflow solutions. Ark Tape provides an integrated solution for customers who want to have a safe copy of their media that can be transported off-site — or for those who want an easy and energy-efficient solution for archiving media and projects from their Avid or EditShare storage systems.

Ark Disk is based on hard disks that are spinning all the time. Go to www.editshare.com for more info.

| Read more »
Apr 08
VidConvert gets Mavericks update, adds Chinese localizations

Reggie Ashworth has released VidConvert 1.5.2, an Mavericks update to his video converter for Mac OS X.

The app is a video converter that will convert just about any type of video into one of many popular formats. You can use it to create videos for your iPhone or iPad, for your Mac or TV, or in formats such as DivX and MPEG.

In addition to support for Mac OS X 10.9 Mavericks, VidConvert 1.5.2 contains Chinese localization, has been updated to work with the latest FFmpeg release (v2.2), and includes miscellaneous code optimizations and bug fixes. The app costs US$7.99 for a single user license; a demo is available for download. Go to www.reggieashworth.com/vidconvert for more info.

| Read more »
Apr 07
Intego has launched X8 versions of its Internet security suites

Intego introduced VirusBarrier X8 and NetBarrier X8, new versions of its security and protection software for Mac OS X 10.7 or higher.
 
Alongside an all-new user interface, VirusBarrier X8 has a new low-priority scanning mode for enhanced performance. NetBarrier X8 has enhanced rule functionality for easier configuration and new firewall/application monitoring options.
 
Customers can choose from a range of bundles. Intego’s X8 bundles are available for purchase at www.intego.com . Current users of Intego’s Mac Internet Security can easily upgrade to the X8 product line for free by visiting www.intego.com.


For new customers, the manufacturer’s suggested retail price is US$49.99 for Mac Internet Security, $89.99 for Mac Premium Bundle, $64.99 for Mac Washing Machine Secure X8 and $79.99 for Family Protector Bundle. Customers can also...

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