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Feb 19
Maintain serves up Cocktail 9.2.2 (El Capitan Edition)

Maintain has served up Cocktail 9.2.2 (El Capitan Edition), the latest maintenance update for users running OS X El Capitan 10.11.

Cocktail is a general purpose utility for OS X that lets users clean, repair and optimize their Macs. This version adds ability to hide the Dock and OS X 10.11.3 compatibility. It also contains improvements on the "Clear audio component caches" procedure, overall performance improvements and updated Automator actions.

Cocktail 9.2.2 (El Capitan Edition) requires OS X El Capitan 10.11 to run. Cocktail (Yosemite Edition) for OS X 10.10, Cocktail (Mavericks Edition) for OS X 10.9, Cocktail (Mountain Lion Edition) for OS X 10.8 and Cocktail (Lion Edition) for OS X 10.7 are available for download from Maintain website.

Cocktail costs $19 for a single user license and available for purchase from the Maintain website (http://www.maintain.se/cocktail)....

| Read more »
Feb 19
The F.B.I. caused Tim Cook to go into ‘bunker mode’

As everyone doubtless knows, Apple CEO Tim Cook has posted (http://www.apple.com/customer-letter/) saying the company will oppose an order from the U.S. government to unlock a shooter’s iPhone. Now the “New York Times” reports (http://tinyurl.com/hrcwkkl) that Cupertino, California-based company had asked the FBI to make its court application under seal, meaning that the legal arguments could be heard in private.

However, the FBI chose instead to make it a public battle prompting Cook to “go into bunker mode,” the article adds. After December’s San Bernardino attack, Apple worked with the F.B.I. to gather data that had been backed up to the cloud from a work iPhone issued to one of the assailants, according to court filings. When investigators also wanted unspecified information on the phone that had not...

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Feb 19
Scorpion Research releases Scorpion BarCode 2.70 for OS X

Scorpion Research has released Scorpion BarCode 2.70, an update to its barcode creation software for Mac OS X.

The app helps with the creation and printing of all major barcode symbologies in EPS, PDF, PNG, or TIFF file formats. Users can integrate barcodes into database, spreadsheet and word processor applications. A command line version is also provided to build powerful scripted solutions. Version 2.70 is designed for OS X 10.11 El Capitan, but works with OS X 10.6 or later.

A free, 30-day demo is available from Scorpion Research (www.scorpionresearch.com). A single user license for Scorpion BarCode 2.70 costs approximately US$145. Multiple user and educational discounts are available.

| Read more »
Feb 18
Apple updates iOS 9.2.1 to deal with ‘Error 53’ problem

Apple has rolled out an updated version of iOS 9.2.1 that allows users whose iPhones were bricked by “Error 53” to revitalize their iDevices. It caused phones whose home buttons had been replaced by third-party repair shops to fail a security validation.

The updated version of iOS 9.2.1 is a patched version, not a new version of the operating system. Also, the update doesn’t re-enable Touch ID. If you want to retain Touch ID functionality, you can get your home button replaced by Apple. The company has also updated its support document (https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT205628) detailing Error 53 for iPhones.

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Feb 18
Apple launches new iPhone Upgrade Program

Apple has unveiled a new iPhone Upgrade Program (http://tinyurl.com/o99oxxf), which gives you an easier way to get a new iPhone every year, and the security and protection of AppleCare+. You’re even free to choose the carrier and rate plan that works for you.

After 12 payments, you can get a new iPhone and start a new iPhone Upgrade Program. You don’t have to wait for your carrier contract to end. Just trade in your current iPhone for a new one, and your new program begins.

When you buy iPhone with the iPhone Upgrade Program, you can choose the carrier you prefer. Once your new iPhone is activated, it remains unlocked, which means you can use it with any carrier that provides service for iPhone.

With the iPhone Upgrade Program, you can spread the cost over 24 months, with the option to get a new iPhone after 12 payments. Pricing per month ranges from $32.41 to $44.91, depending on the...

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Feb 18
Planet Nine added to Star Walk 2 Astronomy Guide

Vito Technology has announced that Planet Nine has been added to Star Walk 2, the company's stargazing guide for iOS and Android devices. The recently discovered ninth planet of the solar system is, for the first time, featured in an interactive space atlas.

Planet Nine is a hypothetical large planet in the far outer Solar System, with an estimated mass of about 10 times that of Earth, a diameter two to four times larger than that of Earth, and a highly elliptical orbit so far away that it could take it 15,000 years to orbit the Sun. Star Walk developers reached out to the scientists behind this discovery, Konstantin Batygin and Michael E. Brown of the California Institute of Technology, to obtain orbit position data necessary for adding this new object to app's database.

All available findings are now included in Star Walk 2 and the planet is visualized similarly to the other planets of the solar system. The position of the object is calculated for any desired time...

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Feb 18
Honeywell’s new Wi-Fi thermostat is HomeKit compatible

Honeywell’s new second generation Lyric Round Wi-Fi Thermostat (http://yourhome.honeywell.com) is now compatible with Apple HomeKit for control using Siri, and easy integration into other current smart home ecosystems.

The second generation Lyric thermostat features the same sleek aesthetic and intuitive features of the original, such as location-based, customized temperature control, says Jeremy Eaton, vice president of Honeywell’s Home Comfort business. It also can be integrated into other current ecosystems, such as Samsung® SmartThings, and can link to many home products and services that customers choose, including those from Honeywell, such as the Lyric security system.

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Feb 18
Illogical Games conjures up Fantasy Mage for OS X, iOS devices

Illogical Games (www.illogicalgames.com) has introduced Fantasy Mage 1.0, its new action role-playing hack and slash game for Mac OS X, iOS, Android, and Windows. As the village's only hope, players must defend the village from the invading armies of hell.

In Fantasy Mage, you control the main character, a young mage, as you attempt to defeat an army of skeleton warriors that are attacking the village. Players can acquire loots, equip spells and armor, defeat enemies, and level up to become a powerful mage.

Fantasy Mage 1.0 costs $2.99. It’s available worldwide through the Apple App Store and the Mac App Store for, respectively, iOS and OS X devices.

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Feb 17
WD announces My Cloud EX2 Ultra

Western Digital (www.wdc.com) has updated its prosumer solutions with My Cloud EX2 Ultra, a high-performance, two-bay network attached storage (NAS) system. The My Cloud EX2 Ultra NAS is designed from the ground up for creative professionals and prosumers that need to automatically sync content across computers, share files and folders and enjoy multiple backup options.

My Cloud EX2 Ultra has been upgraded with a 1.3GHz dual-core processor. Users also have access to 1 GB of DDR3 memory. Drive management options include RAID 0, RAID 1; JBOD and spanning modes, while data protection options include NAS to NAS, USB, cloud or LAN/WAN backup. The My Cloud EX2 Ultra  NAS comes preconfigured in RAID 1 mode.

My Cloud EX2 Ultra is currently available at select U.S. retailers and online at the wdstore.com. The manufacturer’s suggested retail price is $159.99 for the diskless My Cloud EX2 Ultra, $349.99 for the 4TB model, $449...

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Feb 17
Fanatic releases Informant for OS X with Weather, Search, and...

Fanatic Software has launched Informant 7 (http://tinyurl.com/hmtv4sz), a new version of the calendar/task app for Mac OS X.

The utility has an interface specifically designed for OS X Yosemite and El Capitan. Version 7 includes weather, search, Google Event attendee support, drag and drop, and more.

Informant 7 requires a Mac running OS X 10.10 or later. It’s being sold for $29.99 for a limited time.

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Feb 17
Apple: we oppose the government’s order to unlock a shooter’s...

Apple CEO Tim Cook has posted “A Message to Our Customers” (http://www.apple.com/customer-letter/) saying that Apple opposes an order from the U.S. government to unlock a shooter’s iPhone.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Sheri Pym has ordered Apple to help the FBI break into an iPhone belonging to Syed Farook, one of the shooters in the Dec. 2 attack that killed 14 people. The ruling by Pym requires Apple to supply software the FBI can load onto Farook's county-owned work iPhone to bypass a self-destruct feature that erases the phone's data after too many unsuccessful attempts to unlock it. The FBI wants to be able to try different combinations in rapid sequence until it finds the right one.

The Apple CEO says that “Building a version of iOS that bypasses security in this way would undeniably create a back door” and “while the government may argue that its use would be limited to...

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Feb 17
CS Odessa releases paid Germany Map Solution

CS Odessa’s newest addition to the ConceptDraw Solution Park is designed to assist individuals who are looking for Germany map content to be represented in maps they draw.

The collection of library objects, templates, and example drawings for ConceptDraw Pro are designed to make short work of drawing maps that contain county information. The ConceptDraw Pro “Germany Map Solution” is available for a $25 charge to users of ConceptDraw PRO v10 and ConceptDraw Office v3, via ConceptDraw Solution Park. ConceptDraw PRO and ConceptDraw Office work with the latest versions of both Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows.

The Germany Map Solution for ConceptDraw PRO offers optional levels of detail, showing sub-divisions of territory and local government areas, along with major cities.

| Read more »
Feb 16
Eve Energy Switch, Power Meter now available in the U.S.

Elgato has released Eve Energy, the latest product in their HomeKit-enabled Eve family. It plugs into any wall socket and instantly gives users access to control connected devices directly from their iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch over Bluetooth Smart.

With Eve Energy, you can switch your devices on or off with a tap. Or, using Siri, you can see how much energy your devices are using and create scenes to control multiple devices in just one step, says Markus Fest, CEO of Elgato.

Eve Energy is the world’s first HomeKit-enabled switch based on Bluetooth Smart technology, which ensures reliable operation without adding to your already crowded WiFi network, he adds. HomeKit allows users to fully customize their setup with scenes to group multiple HomeKit-enabled devices to control them in one step. For instance, request Siri to turn “Entertainment On” to have the living room TV turn on, lights dim, music play, and so on.

Users can also keep track and manage the...

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Feb 16
Khronos releases Vulkan 1.0 specification

The Khronos Group, an open consortium of leading hardware and software companies, has announced availability of the Vulkan 1.0 royalty-free, open standard API specification. 

It’s designed to provide high-efficiency, cross-platform access to graphics and compute on modern GPUs [graphical user interfaces] used in a variety of devices from PCs and consoles to mobile phones and embedded platforms. This ground-up design, complementing the OpenGL and OpenGL ES 3D APIs [application programming interfaces], provides applications direct control over GPU acceleration for maximized performance and predictability with minimized CPU overhead and efficient multi-threaded performance. 

Multiple Vulkan 1.0 hardware drivers and SDKs are available immediately for developers to begin creating Vulkan applications and engines. More information on Vulkan is available at https://www.khronos.org/vulkan/.

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Feb 16
FileMaker, Inc. offers ‘State of the Custom App 2016 Report’

Seventy-four percent of teams using a custom app have seen an increase in productivity, according to FileMakers “2016 State of the Custom App Report,” which looks at how teams are embracing the power of custom apps to drive output, increase efficiency and streamline workloads.

The report found that custom apps are being used in a wide variety of ways to help teams accomplish their business goals. According to FileMaker, Inc. (www.filemaker.com), key findings of the report include:

° 81% reported custom apps reduced inefficient tasks;
° 74% reported custom apps increased in team productivity;
° 63% reported custom apps improved field and customer service delivery;
° 60% reported custom apps have seen a return on investment (ROI);
° 49% reported using custom apps on iPad or iPhone;
° 52% of custom apps were built in less than three months;
° 82% reported that they...

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Feb 16
Seagate shipping new 2TB mobile hard drive

Seagate Technology is shipping what it says is the world’s first 2TB, 7mm hard disk drive (HDD)— the Seagate Mobile HDD (www.seagate.com/mobilehdd). It weighs 3.17 ounces and is 25% lighter than the previous generation of mobile hard drives.

A smaller 7mm drive frees up valuable space in a mobile device to accommodate additional designed-in features, such as bigger batteries, more memory and better air circulation, according to Matt Rutledge, Seagate’s senior vice president, client storage. With up to 2TB of space, the Mobile HDD enables affordable high capacity storage, while supporting over 200,000 photos, 250,000 songs or 124 hours of high definition video. The drive is available in both 1TB and 2TB capacities.

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Feb 15
Waves Audio ships Waves Abbey Road Reverb Plates Plugin

Waves Audio (www.wavesaudio.com) is shipping the Waves Abbey Road Reverb Plates plugin. They’re available for $99 for a limited time; the regular price will be $249.

Introduced over half a century ago, plate reverbs have been a fixture of recorded music ever since. Used most prominently in the ‘60s and ‘70s by pioneering bands, including the Beatles and Pink Floyd, Abbey Road Studios’ original reverb plates — four EMT 140 units — were first installed in 1957 to complement the fixed reverberation times of the studios’ echo chambers. These plates, with a variable reverb time of up to six seconds, were then tweaked to perfection by Abbey Road's technical engineers.

To keep noise to a minimum, EMI's Central Research Laboratories designed unique hybrid solid-state drive amps for Plates A, B and C. Plate D remained fully valve-powered on both drive and output stages, allowing a versatile array of sonic...

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Feb 15
Samsung launches high bandwidth memory DRAM

Samsung (www.samsung.com) has started the race to bring the next generation of RAM memory to market, with the iHigh Bandwidth Memory (HBM2) DRAM now coming out of its factories.

The company says uUsers will get data in and out at 256 GBps, and there will be various capacities available. Though the memory modules have already gone into production, the Korean manufacturer isn’t saying when the industry-first 4GB DRAM modules will hit the shelves. However, they’ve guaranteed an 8GB version before the end of 2016.

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Feb 15
VidConvert 1.6.4 optimized for OS X El Capitan

Reggie Ashworth has released VidConvert 1.6.4, an update to his video converter for Mac OS X.

It will convert just about any type of video into one of the formats of today. Version 1.6.4 is optimized for OS X El Capitan and fixes a vulnerability in the Sparkle updater.

VidConvert costs $7.99 for a single user license. A demo that creates three-minute samples is available (http://www.reggieashworth.com/vidconvert).

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Feb 12
Kanex announces new Aluminum MultiSync Bluetooth Keyboard for...

Kanex (www.kanex.com) has announced a new family of wireless Bluetooth keyboards for Apple devices, including its flagship model, the MultiSync Aluminum Mac Keyboard.

The wireless keyboard features a sleek design with a Mac layout and can connect up to four Mac and iOS devices at once. Kanex is also introducing a new MultiSync Mini Keyboard, and two new EasySync iPad Keyboards with 2-in-1 covers that convert into a smartphone or tablet stand.

The Kanex MultiSync Aluminum Mac Keyboard features a premium aluminum finish, while the MultiSync Mini Keyboard is made of stainless steel, both complementing your Mac and assuring durability for everyday use, according to Andrew Truong of Kanex. Four Bluetooth keys let you switch between four Mac or iOS devices – just pair your devices and start toggling.

You can adjust screen brightness, volume, play and pause with single touch focus keys on the Mac layout you’re...

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Feb 12
AppDelete for Mac OS X gets tweaked version interface, more

Reggie Ashworth has announced AppDelete 4.2.4 (http://www.reggieashworth.com/appdelete), an update to his application deletion utility for Mac OS X.

Via drag and drop, it will uninstall anything along with all of the associated items. Version 4.2.4 is an El Capitan optimized version with a tweaked user interface, refreshed graphics, and a new app icon. It also includes miscellaneous bug fixes and other optimizations.

AppDelete 4.2.4 is compatible with OS X 10.7 and higher. It costs $7.99 for a single user license. Upgrades from version 2/AppDelete Lite are$3.99. A full-featured demo is available. Version 3 licenses without a serial number are also eligible for the upgrade

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Feb 12
Syncro Soft Updates Oxygen XML Web Author To Version 17.1.1

Syncro Soft, the developer of the Oxygen XML suite of products, has announced version 17.1.1 of its Oxygen XML Author.

The upgrade takes advantage of the Oxygen authoring technology to bring XML editing and reviewing to any device that supports modern web browsers. The user interface is designed to allow you to interact with XML content in the most efficient and productive way possible.

Oxygen XML Web Author provides guided authoring with content completion assistance, automatic validation, inline hints, and a variety of common editing actions for each type of document. A review panel provides an overview of all comments and tracked changes, and offers a way of navigating through changes and accessing various review actions.

Oxygen XML Web Author is available as a ready-to-use product, and as part of the Oxygen XML software development kit. For more information, go to www....

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Feb 11
Remote FileMaker 14 Training Series Course set for April

FileMaker authors John Mark Osborne and Steven Blackwell will teach the FileMaker Training Series for FileMaker Pro 14 remotely in April.

Remote classes offer the FileMaker Training Series at a 50% reduction in price because there’s no training facility to rent or instructor travel expenses. Students also avoid personal travel expenses such as airfare, meals and hotel stay.

The FileMaker Training Series (FTS) is the official training curriculum from FileMaker, Inc. The course offers a series of nine training modules that cover a comprehensive set of topics designed to help you master the essentials of FileMaker solution development. Osborne and Blackwell will customize the training for FileMaker 14 where necessary.

Database Pros offers the FTS modules grouped in eight hour classes as follows: Planning a FileMaker Solution; Developer Skills; Advanced Developer Skills; FileMaker Server; and Security. The first 24 hours of class emphasize development skills like...

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Feb 11
LEGO Star Wars - The Complete Saga for Mac Force-levitates onto...

Feral Interactive (www.feralinteractivecom) says LEGO Star Wars — The Complete Saga for Mac is now available at Steam.

The game lets players experience iconic moments from all six Star Wars movies from podracing on Tatooine to targeting inexplicably unshielded exhaust ports. You solve puzzles through the use of creative thinking, teamwork, and building situations.

LEGO Star Wars — The Complete Saga for Mac has over 120 playable characters, including new characters like Watto, Zam Wessell, Boss Nass. The game sports redesigned levels like the "Mos Espa Podrace" and "Gunship Cavalry,” which take advantage of the the open vehicle gameplay of LEGO Star Wars II.

Bonus levels and missions allow you to take 10 additional Bounty Hunter missions from Jabba the Hutt in the prequel trilogy. Two Player Local Co-Op lets friends and families play together.

| Read more »
Feb 11
Mozart 2 for Mac OS X now available in a pro version

RoGame Software has released Mozart 2 Pro for Mac OS X. It’s designed to help musicians of all levels improve their music reading skills in an entertaining casual game.

The new pro version features an overhauled game engine with five additional instruments, 235 assignable instrument sounds, new game characters, full support for OS X El Capitan, and a polished user interface There are over 25 new features.

Mozart 2 Pro (version 1.0.1) costs $14.99 and requires Mac OS X 10.10 or later. It’s available worldwide exclusively through the Mac App Store (http://tinyurl.com/joo94pc) in the education and music categories. Educational discounts are available.

| Read more »
 
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