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Mar 03
Apple drives out CarPlay for using an iPhone in the car

Apple has announced that leading auto manufacturers are rolling out CarPlay, the "smarter, safer and more fun way" to use iPhone in the car. It gives iPhone users a way to make calls, use Maps, listen to music and access messages with just a word or a touch.

Users can control CarPlay from the car’s native interface or just push-and-hold the voice control button on the steering wheel to activate Siri without distraction. Vehicles from Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz and Volvo will premiere CarPlay to their drivers this week, while additional auto manufacturers bringing CarPlay to their drivers down the road include BMW Group, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai Motor Company, Jaguar Land Rover, Kia Motors, Mitsubishi Motors, Nissan Motor Company, PSA Peugeot Citroën, Subaru, Suzuki and Toyota Motor Corp. 

"CarPlay has been designed from the ground up to provide drivers with an incredible experience using their iPhone in the car," says Greg Joswiak, Apple’s vice president of...

| Read more »
Mar 03
TS Calc for Mac OS X gets improved layout, more

Tension Software (http://www.tensionsoftware.com) has updated TS Calc, a Mac OS X document-based application for solving mathematical models, to version 1.3. The upgrade sports an improved layout, a window info panel for any view, and more.

A TS Calc document contains a series of equations and a list of variables and constants used by the equations. When the document is set up, the user can insert the input value and see the output generated by the TS Calc document using the equations to solve the problem.

TS Calc requires Mac OS X 10.8 or higher. It costs US$15.

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Feb 28
German court tosses IPCom's patent lawsuit against Apple

A German court has thrown out two patent lawsuits against Apple by non-practicing IP licensing firm IPCom, one of which sought US$2.2 billion in damages over alleged infringement of a wireless patent, reports "FOSS Patents" (http://tinyurl.com/nnclgfu).

Early this month IPCom accused Apple of using a patent for technology that gives emergency calls priority on mobile networks. The company says the patent is essential to the implementation of 3G mobile standards, and a narrowed version of the patent was upheld by the European Patent Office (EPO) last month following challenges from Apple, Nokia, HTC, Ericsson and Vodafone.

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Feb 28
Native Instruments introduces Marble Rims Expansion for Maschine

Native Instruments has released Marble Rims, a new Maschine Expansion offering producers the "laid-back, sun-kissed flavor of classic and contemporary SoCal hip hop." It delivers exclusive recordings from West Coast artists and producers.

Producers can choose from a palette of 40 sampled instruments ranging from SoCal staples such as analog basses and leads, electric pianos, and layered percussion, to live sampled guitar licks, one-shots and beat sequences. Benchmark keyboard instruments and synths such as the Fender Rhodes Mark 1, Hammond B3 Organ, a Minimoog Model D, and more were all sampled, then equalized using vintage EQs.

Marble Rims is available now exclusively at the NI Online Shop for US$49. Go to www.native-instruments.com/marblerims for more info.

| Read more »
Feb 27
Beltone releases iPhone compatible hearing aid

Beltone First has hit the market. It's a hearing aid capable of streaming  stereo sound from an iPhone, iPad and iPod touch without the need for an additional pendant-like device.

Wearers can also customize their hearing experience through the Beltone HearPlus app. The app allows users to set preferred volume levels as well as treble/bass settings, and use geo-tagging to assign and adjust to the acoustics of frequently visited places like home, work, favorite restaurants and more.

Beltone HearPlus also features a "Find My Hearing Aid" function to help users pinpoint their hearing aids if misplaced. Go to www.beltone.com for more info.

| Read more »
Feb 27
Apple is number one of Fortune's 'World's Most...

FORTUNE has revealed its 31st annual list of the "World's Most Admired Companies." Apple topped the list for the seventh year in a row.

Following it in the top 10 are Amazon, Google, Berkshire Hathaway, Starbucks, Coca-Cola, Walt Disney, FedEx, Southwest Airlines, and General Electric. You can find the entire list at http://tinyurl.com/85ybdhb .

To arrive at the top 50 Most Admired Companies overall, the Hay Group, a survey company, asked 3,920 respondents to select the 10 companies they admired most from a list made up of the companies that ranked in the top 25% in last year’s survey, plus those that finished in the top 20% of their industry. Anyone could vote for any company in any industry.

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Feb 27
FTC: Samsung's claims about Apple infringements are...

The Fair Trade Commission (FTC) concluded that Samsung’s claims that Apple infringed on its wireless patents are acceptable, and does not violate the fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) licensing principles, reports "The Korea Times" (http://tinyurl.com/kkywrlj).

“What’s important is how sincerely the two companies tried to resolve the patent dispute, but it is difficult to believe that Apple was sincere in negotiating with Samsung to iron out their differences,” an FTC official said. “Therefore, we don’t think Samsung unfairly used the lawsuit to hinder Apple’s business activities.”

This is all part of the ongoing, global legal battle. Apple and Samsung have filed more than 30 lawsuits against each other across four continents. For example, Apple alleges that Samsung copied the slide-to-unlock technology of its iPhone and iPad devices.

| Read more »
Feb 26
Apple releases SMC Update 2.0 for the Mac Pro

Apple has released SMC Firmware Update 2.0 for the new Mac Pro. It's a 544KB download.

This update enables Mac Pro to enter Power Nap without running the fan for most Power Nap activities. It also addresses a rare issue where a low-speed USB device may not be detected at boot.

Apple says the update is recommended for all Mac Pro (Late 2013) models. You can download it at http://tinyurl.com/mbaevwk .

| Read more »
Feb 26
UT Wire introduces cord organizing solutions

UT Wire has introduced the Cable Station 2 and Cable Station Mini for organizing and accessing cords.

The Cable Station offers a way to organize messy and tangled cables on a desk. It creates a station for loose cords that can be mounted using double sided tape on the top, back or side of a desk, table or media stand to gather and organize multiple cords from the computer, router, speakers, telephone and more.
 
The five slots store individual cords separately, holding them in place and preventing loose cords from slipping under the desk. Individual cords can be extended or removed, and the Cable Station can be written on so you can identify which cord belongs to which device.
 
Available in two sizes, the 2.75-inch Cable Station 2 and 1.5-inch Cable Station Mini have a manufacturer's suggested retail price of US$5.99 each. Go to www.UT-Wire.com for more info.

| Read more »
Feb 26
Apple releases iTunes 11.1.5

Apple has released iTunes 11.1.5. It's available at the Mac App Store and is a free download.

Apple says the update fixes a problem that may cause iTunes to quit unexpected when a device is connected. It also improves compatibility for iBooks for the Mac on Mac OS X Mavericks.

| Read more »
Feb 26
Brotens announces Room Lighting Calc for the Mac

Brotens has announced Room Lighting Calc for Mac OS X. It's an OpenGL native Cocoa application designed to perform lighting calculations for prismatic rooms.

According to the folks at Brotens, with Room Lighting Calc you don’t need to be a specialist. Simply fill the form and in few seconds you’ll be able to prepare a complete and professional lighting report, formatted wit your style, they add.

Room Lighting Calc works with parametric 3D objects (faces, vaults, quadric, domes, cubes, spheres, cones, etc..) used for modeling. The light sources are managed entirely by RoomLightingCalc, which allows you to import, display, edit and format IESNA LM-63 (American standards), EULUMDAT (European standards) and even DXF data files.

Room Lighting Calc requires Mac OS X 10. or higher. A demo is available at the Brotens web site (www.brotens.com). Registration is US$ 69.99.

| Read more »
Feb 26
Maintain serves up Cocktail 6.8.4 (Mountain Lion Edition)

Maintain has released Cocktail 6.8.4 (Mountain Lion Edition), the latest maintenance update for users running OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion. This version adds ability to turn on Dock translucency and ability to change Safari's default search on page behavior. It also addresses an issue in which Cocktail may stop responding when trying to display certain log files.

Cocktail is a general purpose utility for OS X that lets users clean, repair and optimize their Mac. Version 6.8.4 requires OS X Mountain Lion or OS X Mountain Lion Server (10.8). Cocktail (Lion Edition) for OS X 10.7, Cocktail (Snow Leopard Edition) for OS X 10.6 and Cocktail (Leopard Edition) for OS X 10.5 are available for download from the Maintain website.

Cocktail costs US$19 for a single user license and is available for purchase from the Maintain website (http://maintain.se/cocktail). The license is valid for Mountain Lion, Lion...

| Read more »
Feb 26
MEI updates ad layout solutions

Managing Editor Inc. (MEI) has released Page Director Ad Layout System 5.7, ALS for Magazines 5.7 and AdForce 5.7. For ad layout groups working in Adobe InDesign, ALS 5.7 is compatible with Creative Cloud. For QuarkXPress users, ALS 5.7 is also compatible with QuarkXPress 10.

In addition to supporting the latest page layout software, ALS 5.7 includes numerous bug fixes. ALS 5.7 is certified to run natively on Intel-based Macs running Mac OS X 10.6.8 and higher.

ALS for Magazines 5.7, a version of MEI's ad-placement solution, and AdForce 5.7, a system for ad-layout and issue-management designed for small to mid-size newspapers, are also universal applications. Upgrading is free for customers in MEI's Premium Site Support Agreement program. For more info go to http://www.maned.com .

| Read more »
Feb 25
Apple releases Mac OS X 10.9.2 with SSL vulnerability fix

Apple has released Mac OS X 10.9.2, which offers a solution to the SSL security flaw that's been in the news this week. It also:

▪ Adds the ability to make and receive FaceTime audio calls 
▪ Adds call waiting support for FaceTime audio and video calls
▪ Adds the ability to block incoming iMessages from individual senders
▪ Includes general improvements to the stability and compatibility of Mail
▪ Improves the accuracy of unread counts in Mail
▪ Resolves an issue that prevented Mail from receiving new messages from certain providers 
▪ Improves AutoFill compatibility in Safari
▪ Fixes an issue that may cause audio distortion on certain Macs
▪ Improves reliability when connecting to a file server using SMB2
▪ Fixes an issue that may cause VPN connections to disconnect
▪ Improves VoiceOver navigation in Mail and Finder
▪ Improves VoiceOver reliability when navigating websites
▪ Improves...

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Feb 25
New DLC content available for The Bureau

TransGaming says three new DLC packs for The Bureau: XCOM Declassified on Mac, are now available for purchase on the Mac App Store.The DLC content includes the following: 
 
° The Bureau: XCOM Declassified - Hangar 6 R&D: "In the days leading up to the events of The Bureau: XCOM Declassified, Agent Nico DaSilva volunteers for a series of secret psycho-medical experiments to identify and treat a terrifying new pathogen. Maximize your combat skills and push your team to its limits to protect them from terrifying hallucinations as the experiments turn dangerous."
 
° The Bureau: XCOM Declassified - CodeBreakers: "A top secret government communications facility responsible for intercepting and decoding enemy transmissions has gone radio-silent. In a desperate attempt to turn the tides of the secret war, Special Agent Carter and his squad must investigate the incident, eliminate any threats, and make contact with personnel in order to bring the facility back...

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Feb 25
Native Instruments introduces SuperCharger GT

Native Instruments has released SuperCharger GT, a compressor inspired by the tube-driven sound of a boutique hardware unit.

A follow-up to the SuperCharger compressor released in December 2013, SuperCharger GT goes beyond modern tube compression by adding dedicated Saturation and Character modes and additional controls for complete sonic fine-tuning, according to the folks at Native Instruments. It was designed for sound shaping. Producers can dial in a wide range of compression effects using a single Compress knob.

The SuperCharger GT is available at the NI Online Shop for US$99. Owners of the original SuperCharger can upgrade for $49. Go to http://tinyurl.com/lw2b622 for more info.

| Read more »
Feb 25
Disney debuts cloud-based digital movie service

The Walt Disney Studios has unveiled its exclusive cloud-based digital movie service, Disney Movies Anywhere. This all-new app for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch and Web experience enables consumers to discover, purchase, manage, and watch movies from Disney, Pixar, and Marvel at home and on the go. iTunes is the premier digital movie provider for Disney Movies Anywhere.

The debut of Disney Movies Anywhere coincides with the digital release of Disney's hit film "Frozen" and features Disney's library of over 400 active digital titles. In addition, for a limited time, Disney Movies Anywhere users who activate and connect their Disney Movies Anywhere account to their iTunes account will receive a free digital copy of Disney Pixar's animated film, "The Incredibles."

Disney Movies Anywhere unlocks digital content across platforms and devices, enabling access to user-owned Disney digital content and movies in the Disney Movies Anywhere ecosystem and through iTunes. Consumers...

| Read more »
Feb 25
The Data Rescue Center can help save your data in extreme...

You probably know Prosoft Engineering as the company behind such Mac products as Drive Genius, Data Rescue, and Picture Rescue. However, did you know they also offer the Data Rescue Center (TDRC)?

Drive Genius is a hard drive utility that cleans up, optimizes, and speeds up your Mac. Data Rescue is a tool for recovering data from a corrupt hard drive or one that refuses to mount. Picture Rescue is software for recovering data from media cards that have gotten corrupted or been accidentally erased. 

The Data Rescue Center comes into play when you run into problems that Prosoft's software line isn't equipped to handle. It opened in January 2011 in Livermore, California. The company has a core group of employees, as well as "cross-branded" employees who handle work for both TDRC and Prosoft Engineering. In all, there are under 20 employees at the Data Rescue Center.

One of the features of the facility is its cleanrooms, which offer special filtration equipment...

| Read more »
Feb 25
App Tamer for Mac OS X gets maintenance upgrade

St. Clair Software has rolled out an update (version 2.0.1) for App Tamer, its Mac utility that manages applications to deliver more efficient CPU usage and increased battery life.

App Tamer's unique AutoStop capability automatically slows down or pauses applications when you switch away from them, and then restarts them when you click back to them. Version 2.0.1 addresses several performance issues, as well as fixing problems that were reported by users of version 2.0.

App Tamer will operate on any Mac running Mac OS X version 10.7 or higher. You can try App Tamer free for 15 days. A license to continue using it after the trial period is US$14.95. If you bought App Tamer 2.0 this update is free. If you purchased App Tamer 1.x after July 1, 2013 the update is also free. If you purchased your license before that date you can upgrade for $7.9. Go to http://www.stclairsoft.com/ for more info...

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Feb 24
PCI Geomatics announces support for Skybox Imaging’s imagery

PCI Geomatics (www.pcigeomatics.com), which develops remote sensing and photogrammetric software and systems, says it now supports data analysis of images from SkySat-1, the first in a planned constellation of 24 satellites from Skybox Imaging.

Support for SkySat-1 is currently available in the company’s new software, Geomatica 2013 (Service Pack 3 – SP3).

SkySat-1 is a satellite capable of providing 4-band, high-resolution sub-meter class imagery. Operating in a sun-synchronous orbit of 600 km, SkySat-1 also provides the first commercial high-resolution, full-motion video from space at 30 frames per second.


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Feb 24
AcChen is new 'find the matching tile' game for Mac OS...

Stefan Preuss has introduced AcChen 1.0 for Mac OS X. It's a "find the matching tile" type of game.

Here's how it's described: "Clear the board by finding two items with identical symbols. Master the 60 different levels and 12 bonus maps in the single player campaign. Every 5th level you play is a bonus level. Unlock new levels by beating the clock or play in 'chill mode' without any pressure: no timer, no score just happy tile hunting."

AcChen requires Mac OS X 10.8 or later. It costs US$2.99 and is available worldwide exclusively through the Mac App Store in the Games category. Go to http://miscstuff.de for more info.

| Read more »
Feb 24
Private Contact for Mac OS X now uses AES-256 encryption

Tension Software (http://www.tensionsoftware.com) has updated Private Contact, a Mac OS X app for managing an encrypted address book, to version 3.1. The new version has an improved layout and now users AES-256 to encrypt data.

Private Contact requires Mac OS X 10.8 or higher. It costs US$4.99 and is available at the Mac App Store and the Tension Software web site.

| Read more »
Feb 24
Mapdiva for Mac OS X adds text styles

Mapdiva has unveiled Artboard 1.9, an update of the Mac OS X graphics design app for creating vector drawings and illustrations. The new version adds text styles.


With Artboard, you can design logos, posters, floor plans, technical drawings, fun fashions, web graphics, and more. Unlike pixel-based images, vector graphics are composed of editable objects that are scalable.

Artboard requires Mac OS X 10.6 or later. It costs US$29.99 and is available worldwide through the Mac App Store in the Graphics & Design category. It is a free update for current users of the app. A free trial is available from Mapdiva online (http://www.mapdiva.com/artboard/).

| Read more »
Feb 24
Potential is there for strong sales of smart thermostats

New Parks Associates (http://www.parksassociates.com) research shows consumer adoption of smart thermostats could expand significantly if paired with utility rebate programs.

The research group reports that 43% of U.S. broadband households are willing to purchase a smart thermostat if offered an US$25 rebate, 55% would purchase if offered a $50 rebate, and 62% would purchase if offered a $75 rebate.

"Consumers are interested in smart thermostats but are generally unwilling to pay more for the ability to control a thermostat from a smartphone or computer," says Tom Kerber, director, energy and home controls research, Parks Associates. "Utility incentives that eliminate the price difference between smart and standard programmable thermostats will accelerate adoption."

The research group found that when a smart thermostat is priced at $50 more than a programmable thermostat...

| Read more »
Feb 21
Adobe publishes Camera Raw 8.4 Release Candidate

Adobe has announced Camera Raw 8.4 Release Candidate for Mac OS X and Windows. It adds support for 14 cameras, including Nikon D4s, Canon EOS Rebel t5 and Fujifilm X-TI.

The release candidate also includes a new preview mechanism for better before/after image comparisons and an improved set of color matching profiles for Fujifilm X-Trans cameras. What's more, it corrects issues reported from the Camera Raw 8.3 release.

Camera Raw 8.4 is available as a free update for both Photoshop CC and Photoshop CS6. Please note that Camera Raw 8.4 for CS6 only includes updated camera and lens profile support as part of the recent camera raw policy change.  Go to http://labs.adobe.com for more info.

| Read more »
 
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