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10:16
All MacTech Sites Restored after HostGator Outage

Yesterday, HostGator (one of MacTech's providers) experienced yet another long period outage that affected customers across their base. While HostGator stayed initially quiet on the outage, they continued to say throughout the outage that only a "small number" of customers ... given the number of complaints now posted, that was clearly not the case.

Only MacTech's periphery sites were impacted, and those sites are now fully back up (if you continue to see a "Yeah, we know." page talking about the outage, please let us know.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

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08:12
Eyefi unveils Eyefi Cloud

Eyefi (www.eyefi.com), which specializes in digital camera connectivity, has unveiled Eyefi Cloud, a private photo-centric cloud service that makes newly captured photos instantly available on a smartphone, tablet, computer or smart TV. 

Eyefi Cloud was designed for photo enthusiasts who require the superior image quality provided by digital cameras but are frustrated with the time-consuming processes required to enjoy those photos on multiple devices, according to Eyefi CEO Matt DiMaria. Eyefi Cloud, along with the Eyefi Mobi wireless SD card and Eyefi Mobi apps, makes every picture organized and instantly accessible, anytime anywhere, he adds.
  
For customers who don't wish to transfer images over the Internet, Eyefi has also introduced Eyefi Desktop Transfer apps for the PC and Mac platforms.  Eyefi Desktop transfer sends images directly from a digital camera equipped with Eyefi Mobi SD memory card to...

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08:07
Does Twitter have a stickiness problem?

According to data published by Twitter analytics firm Twopcharts, Twitter may have a stickiness problem. According to the data there is a large discrepancy between the number of accounts created and the number of accounts that actually remain active.

Of the 284 million accounts created in 2013, only 37 million (12.9%) were still actively tweeting in February 2014. On the other hand, of the 4 million accounts created in 2008, 1 million were still tweeting in February 2013, indicating that early Twitter adopters are more likely to stick with the service. The accompanying chart is provided via Statistica.com .

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05:00
TRENDnet ships Powerline 500 Wireless Kit

TRENDnet (www.trendnet.com) has released the Powerline 500 Wireless Kit, model TPL-410APK, which extends a home wireless network using existing electrical lines.

The included TRENDnet Powerline adapters (TPL-406E + TPL-410AP) auto-connect out of the box over a pre-encrypted Powerline signal. You can network the standard Powerline 500 adapter, model TPL-406E, to a router and plug in the Powerline 500 AV Wireless Access Point, model TPL-410AP, into an outlet on the same electrical system to extend a high performance wireless network.

"The TPL-410APK is well suited to extend a wireless network in large homes or homes built with concrete or masonry construction which degrades wireless signals," says Zak Wood of TRENDnet. "Installation couldn't be easier. Simply plug in the adapters and you're up and running."

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04:56
Don't change your passwords until Heartbleed bug is fixed

In the wake of the Heartbleed Bug, some inexperienced vendors are suggesting users change their passwords, but this won't protect them from further attacks.

Last week, the Heartbleed bug was discovered. Since then, many companies and a few inexperienced security vendors have rushed to put out ill-advised statements. One of those theories is that users need to immediately change their passwords so they can maintain their online security. According to LogmeOnce CEO and security expert Kevin Shahbazi, this will not only not protect you, it could increase your risk of a cyber attack.

"Users should not change their passwords right now, it will not help the situation," says Shahbazi. "The problem with sites affected by the Heartbleed Bug is that hackers can visibly see your passwords. And until the infected sites clear up the problem themselves, it is advisable not to change your password. And be careful because the Heartbleed Bug affects more than just websites, it can...

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03:44
Tension Software revs Calcine for Mac OS X to version 1.4

Tension Software (www.tensionsoftware.com) has updated Calcine, its algebra solver for Mac OS X, to version 1.4.

Calcine provides a algebra solver in small strip window. You can use it for simple additions or for complex formula using and assigning variables and constants.

In Calcine 1.4 the import function variables and constants now has the ability to auto-detect the file encode format. There are new file encode formats for text files to import, nine accepted formats such as (UTF8, ASCII, UTF16, UTF32, OLD MAC OS 9) and others. You can now can import using also CSV-S format (Comma Separated Values using Semicolon) often used by Excel and other MS products.

Calcline requires Mac OS X 10.8 or higher. It costs US$1.99 and is available at the Mac App Store.

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Apr 16
Native Instruments introduces RISE & HIT

Native Instruments has released RISE & HIT, an instrument dedicated to creating tension and suspense with build-ups and climatic hits. It uses a range of over 8GB of recorded and studio-produced sounds.

The RISE & HIT interface offers editing with integrated effects and mastering tools for sound design capabilities. It includes an extensive sample library of produced sounds.


RISE & HIT runs in KONTAKT 5 or the free KONTAKT 5 PLAYER. It cots US$149 and is available at www.native-instruments.com/riseandhit .

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Apr 16
Hyundai brings Apple CarPlay into the 2015 Sonata

Hyundai says it will bring Apple CarPlay functionality to the 2015 Sonata. CarPlay is an automobile-oriented interface that gives iDevice users a way to make calls, use Maps, listen to music and access messages with just a word or a touch.

It also features Siri voice control. You can read more about it at http://www.apple.com/ios/carplay/ .

Hyundai says its engineers took advance of the eight-inch touchscreen on their Audio Video Navigation (AVN) systems to integrate the Apple technology. A Sonata equipped with CarPlay, lets drivers have the ability to make calls, use Maps, listen to music and access messages. Using a Lighting connector, CarPlay works with iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c and iPhone 5 running the latest version of iOS 7.

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Apr 16
9 Clues: The Secret of Serpent Creek comes to the Mac

G5 and Serpent Creek have teamed up to bring 9 Clues: The Secret of Serpent Creek to the Mac. It's available on the Mac App Store.

Here's how the game is described: "Your closest friend, journalist Helen Hunter, traveled to the coastal town of Serpent Creek to report on the Serpent Festival. Now she's missing, and the last phone call she made was to you. As a paranormal private investigator, Helen wanted you to weigh in on some frightening things she'd discovered. She asked you to come immediately.
 
"The first thing you see upon arriving in Serpent Creek is a humanoid, snake-like creature. Clearly, Helen's fears were not groundless. It seems the town's streets are crawling with snakes, the ground shakes with violent tremors, people are sleepwalking and to make matters worse, no one remembers a blonde journalist. You'll have to investigate mysterious locations and solve challenging puzzles to piece together clues about what happened to your best friend. Reveal...

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Apr 16
CS Odessa announces addition to ConceptDraw Solution Park

CS Odessa has announced a new ConceptDraw Solution Park addition for ConceptDraw PRO v9.5 and greater. It's a set of libraries that provide a range of graph and chart types to support documentation and graphics that deal with statics and data. The new addition to ConceptDraw Solution Park is a free item for current users of ConceptDraw PRO.

The Graphs and Charts Area of ConceptDraw Solution Park now includes a collection of templates, samples, and libraries of vector stencils, icons and clipart that support many professional ways to show data at a glance. The new area contains area charts, bar charts, divided bar charts, histograms, line graphs, picture graphs, pie charts, and area charts to illustrate documents and presentations.

ConceptDraw PRO is compatible with Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows. ConceptDraw PRO retails for US$199 USD. ConceptDraw PRO v9 is included in ConceptDraw Office v2, which retails for $499. Go to...

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Apr 16
DB-Text for Mac OS X revved to version 1.4

Tension Software (www.tensionsoftware.com) has revved DB-Text, its general use tool for opening and editing CSV and TSV files on Mac OS X — to version 1.4.

DB-Text can enlarge or shrink all the columns in a single step from the toolbar. It allows you to move and adjust columns as you need.

In version 1.4, the import function now has the ability to auto-detect the file encode format. Plus, there are new file encode formats for text files to import: nine accepted formats such as (UTF8, ASCII, UTF16, UTF32, OLD MAC OS 9) and others.

DB-Text costs US$5. It's available at the Tension Software web site and the Mac App Store.

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Apr 16
Typinator for Mac OS X gets maintenance update

Ergonis Software has released Typinator 5.9, a new maintenance update for its text expander. It incorporates several minor bug fixes and improves compatibility with certain third-party applications like Aperture, MacGiro, Mellel, and others.

Typinator 5.9 requires Mac OS X 10.5.8 or newer and is compatible with OS X Mavericks. It's available on the Ergonis Software website (https://store.ergonis.com). The upgrade to Typinator 5.9 is free for anyone who owns a valid license for Typinator 5.

Upgrade paths are available for owners of older licenses. All customers who purchase an upgrade or new license of Typinator now, will get the next major version 6 (and all subsequent 6.x updates) for free.

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Apr 15
Twelve South introduces a hardwood MacBook stand

Twelve South ash introduced the US$79.99 BookArc möd, its first product created in wood. It's a hardwood version of the company's BookArc stand.



The stand is compatible with all current MacBook models and is available in three finished: birch, walnut, and espresso. It's available now; go to http://bit.ly/1t5Je0Sfor more info.

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Apr 15
Adesso releases Scissor-Switch Keyboard

Adesso has released the Campagno Air Bluetooth 3.0 Scissor-Switch Keyboard with Folio Case for the iPad Air. It costs US$7.99.

The slim Bluetooth 3.0 keyboard includes a standard, 64-day layout with iPad and multimedia hot keys that allow you to access shortcuts for the Apple tablet with one touch. The scissor-switch keys purportedly provide the same tactile feel as that of a laptop. The microfiber folio case is designed to offer protection from minor bumps and scratches.

The Campagno Air Bluetooth 3.0 Scissor-Switch Keyboard with Folio Case for the iPad Air is available at retail stores including Micro Center, Fry's, Staples, BestBuy, and CompUSA, as well as online at Amazon, Buy.com, CDW, MacMall, Newegg, and Tiger Direct. It's also available at Adesso's own online store (www.adesso.com).

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Apr 15
Corning announces availability of USB 3.0 optical cables by...

Corning has announced the availability of its USB 3.Optical Cables by Corning , capable of sending up to five 5 gigabits per second of data at distances up to 30 meters. Compatible with most USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 devices, the cables extend data transmission beyond the 3-meter limitation of comparable copper cable.

The USB 3.Optical Cables by Corning are up to 50 percent thinner and up to 80 percent lighter than comparable copper cables. With a "zero-bend" radius, they can withstand bending, squeezing, and tangling without damage or loss of function, making them ideal for routing through the harsh environment of a crowded workspace, says Bernhard Deutsch, vice president, product line management, Optical Connectivity Solutions for Corning Optical Communications

USB 3.Optical Cables by Corning currently come in lengths of 10 meters with "A-to-receptacle-A" connectors for maximum flexibility to connect devices with different USB connector form factors, such as B or Micro B...

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Apr 15
Allegorithmic’s Substance Engine available for all Unreal Engine...

Allegorithmic’s Substance Engine is coming to one of the gaming world’s favorite development platforms. With a full integration into Unreal Engine 4 (UE4), Substance Engine is designed to make the creation of next-gen textures a seamless experience for even the most ambitious of game developers.

No purchase is required. It's a free plugin available for all Unreal Engine 4 developers.

Allegorithmic's past successful integration efforts include the full source Unreal Engine 3 and its free version, the Unreal Development Kit (UDK), as well as platforms in the mobile space, and consoles like the Xbox One and PlayStation 4.

"Unreal Engine 4 is going to help the game industry transition to a Physically Based Rendering world," says Dr. Sébastien Deguy, Founder and CEO of Allegorithmic. "Game developer tools and pipelines have to adapt to this new paradigm which has become a requirement to upscale visual quality. Our physically based workflow in UE4 will finally give...

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Apr 15
Google heavily outspends tech rivals on lobbying

Google, the company who's famous mantra is "Don't be evil", has grown to become one of the largest spenders on lobbying in the United States. Once surely considered "evil" by the company's idealistic founders, lobbying has become essential to the search giant, that has repeatedly been subject to antitrust allegations.

In 2013, the company spent a total of US$15.8 million on lobbying, making Google the fifth largest corporate lobbying spender in Washington D.C. The accompanying graphic is courtesy of Statistica (http://tinyurl.com/l8eun6m).

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Apr 15
Pioneer CarPlay systems to debut this summer

Pioneer Corp. has announced one of the first aftermarket in-dash car multimedia systems to provide Apple CarPlay, allowing consumers the ability to upgrade the vehicle they already own to the safer way to use an iPhone in the car. CarPlay compatibility will be available in early summer 2014 via a firmware update to the five 2014 NEX in-dash multimedia receivers.

Utilizing large, in-dash Pioneer LCD displays, CarPlay featuring Siri voice control, gives iPhone users the features while allowing them to stay focused on the road. With CarPlay, consumers with iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c and iPhone 5 can use Siri to make and receive calls, compose and respond to text messages, use Apple Maps for navigation and listen to their music, podcasts and iTunes RadioSM. For more information about CarPlay, visit www.apple.com/ios/carplay.

"Pioneer’s years of expertise integrating smartphone connectivity into the...

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Apr 15
Slots Talke for Mac OS X gets maintenance upgrade

Vasilek Games has announced Slots Tale 1.3.1, an update of their slot game for Mac OS X. It's a free casino game based on myths and legends.

Version 1.3.1 is a maintenance upgrade. Slots Tale requires Mac OS X 10.7 or higher. It's available free at the Mac App Store. Go to http://vasilek-games.com for more info.

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Apr 14
PARAT Solutions rolls out new charge/sync transport case

PARAT Solutions has introduced a compact tablet charge/sync transport case designed especially for education, corporate training, conferences and other mobile device-sharing applications.


The InSync C452 is an universal transport case for transporting, securing, charging and syncing content for up to 10 tablet devices (iOS or Android) with up to a 10.2-inch display. The interior sports surface-mounted connection ports for each device, so you can charge and sync devices using your own USB cables.

The supplied USB 2.0 cable connects to a host computer to sync content onto the devices using iTunes or (Mac only) Apple Configurator. The case's lid can be locked with a key, even though it allows devices to be charged with the lid closed.


The InSync C452 costs US$1,499. For more info go to paratsolutions.com.

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Apr 14
Theme Inn launches iOS version of Bundle for MS Office

Theme Inn has expanded its productivity templates with the release of the iOS version of Bundles for Microsoft Office. It requires iOS 6.1 or later.

The new pack of designs is designed to complement the newly released Microsoft Office Mobile with 200 assorted designs for Word, 20 matching template lines for Word, 40 spreadsheet designs for Excel, and 40 slideshow themes for PowerPoint.

Bundler for MS Office costs US$10.99 and is available at the Apple App Store in the Productivity category. Go to www.themeinn.com for more info.

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Apr 14
Twin Moons game free for Mac OS X, iOS this week

From April 14th to the 20th, G5 will make Twin Moons, a hidden object adventure game, available for free for Mac, iOS, and Google Play platforms.

The game involves you in the story of a talented scientist who worked on a secure mission to open the Half World and give people divine powers. You get to device if characters get immortality or not. Go to http://www.g5e.com/corporate/about for more info.

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Apr 14
Sinisa Drpa introduces Effect Stack for Mac OS X

Sinisa Drpa has introduced Effect Stack, a non-destructive image editor for Mac OS X. It requires Mac OS X 10.9 Mavericks or later and costs US$9.99.

Effect Stack allows users to chain multiple image filters. It offers a choice of a variety of filters that can be stacked together and saved as pre-sets that can be re-used.

The filters' effects ripple downward through the stack, changing the current stack of the selected image or images. Effect Stack supports all image formats supported by OS X. Go to http://tinyurl.com/n838vwj for more info.

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Apr 14
RESTfm 3 released for FileMaker Server

FileMaker solutions provider, Goya Pty, has launched RESTfm version 3, the latest update for their RESTful Web Services product for FileMaker Server.

RESTfm allows you to share your FileMaker Server based data with a RESTful Web Service API [appliation programming interface] and allow access to read, create, edit and delete records from any application that has web access. Version 3 is updated for FileMaker Server 13 and Mac OS X 10.9, as well as adding exciting new functionality.

RESTfm is available for US$699 for a single FileMaker server license. Other licensing options, education and not for profit pricing is available on request. Upgrades are available for just $199 from previous versions. Demonstrations of RESTfm functionality are available on the RESTfm website (http://www.goya.com.au/), including an open source jQuery site built with RESTfm as the back end data source.

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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).

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