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Mar 25
iSkin releases EarTones stereo earphones

iSkin (http://www.iskin.com) has released the US$39.99 EarTones stereo earphones in various colors. Featuring an integrated microphone with remote control, earTones connects to your iPhone, iPad, iPod, Mac and other supported gadgets to provide audio in/out, plus the ability to remotely answer and terminate calls or control music and video playback.

The new earTones by iSkin features Microban antimicrobial product protection on both the ear buds and the microphone to inhibit the growth of fungus, odor and stain-causing bacteria on the product. For comfort, earTones features lightweight materials and soft-tipped earbuds with FlexFit, a flexible neck that allows the earbuds to flex when inserted into the ear.

On iOS devices such as iPad 2, earTones delivers audio for all games, videos and music applications. With apps that support audio input, you can use your earTones as a microphone for recording audio,...

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Mar 25
Macgamestore releases Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Conviction

Macgamestore (http://www.Macgamestore.com) says UbiSoft's Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Conviction is now available as a digital download through its web site. It requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher and costs US$19.99. Or you can get a deluxe edition that includes the standard version plus an Infiltration Mode and three bonus weapons for $24.99.

Here's how Splinter Cell Conviction is described: "An investigation into his daughter's death unwittingly leads former agent Sam Fisher to discover he's been betrayed by his prior agency, the Third Echelon. Now a renegade, Fisher finds himself in a race against time to thwart a deadly terrorist plot that threatens millions.

"Uniting revolutionary gameplay enhancements with a high-octane, no-holds-barred storyline, Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Conviction arms you to the teeth with all the high-tech weaponry and lethal skills of an elite operative and invites...

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Mar 25
Macware releases Logo Design Studio Pro in the Mac App Store

Macware (http://www.macwareinc.com) has released Logo Design Studio Pro in Apple's Mac App Store. It's being offered for US$39.99 for a limited time; it's normally $59.99.

Logo Design Studio Pro is a full-fledged vector illustration and drawing application that allows you to design and use professional business logos and graphics. It comes with over 1,000 pre-designed logo templates, over 2,800 editable vector graphics, over 500 background textures, over 500 taglines and slogans and 15 commercial use fonts.

Other features include: a knife tool to slice graphics on the canvas; an eraser tool to remove parts of graphics, a blend tool to create 3D tunnel effects and unique shapes, a component Library to save and reuse new graphics you create and an object browser that includes special one-click filters.

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Mar 25
Big Grips frame for iPad made for kids

Constructed of durable, lightweight foam, the Big Grips Frame (http://www.biggrips.com) from KEM Ventures is a new, big, soft protective case for iPad that's easy to grab, comfortable to hold and very grip-able. It's made for kids.

Big Grips Frame mounts into the Big Grips Stand in portrait or landscape orientation for watching movies, working at a desk, or surfing on the couch. Made from the same material as Big Grips Frame, the Big Grips Stand is designed to be sturdy and stable --even on soft or uneven surfaces, says Kirk Mills, founder and president of KEM Ventures.

Big Grips Frame and Big Grips Stand are available separately for US$34.95 and $24.95 or as a matching set for $49.95. They come in four colors: Fresh Green, Electric Blue, Carnation Pink and Steel Grey. Pictures and more information, including where to purchase Big Grips, are available online.

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Mar 25
Big Bang -- Cinematic Percussion is new virtual instrument

Big Bang -- Cinematic Percussion is new virtual instrument
SoniVox (http://www.SoniVoxmi.com) has released their latest virtual instrument: Big Bang -- Cinematic Percussion (US$299.99) for Mac and PC systems. It features over 12GB of more than 200 instrument presets all designed by SoniVox’s sound designers to deliver explosive sounding drums and percussion.

An integral part of Big Bang -- Cinematic Percussion is a new technology called Intelligent Rhythm Control, or IRC. Intelligent Rhythm Control Technology is a new concept in music production that offers real-time rhythm correction for maximizing in-time musical performance, according to the folks at SoniVox. 

I.R.C., intercepts and adjusts MIDI events as they occur, integrating each note into the host timeline and enabling users to create drum and percussion tracks with fluidity and ease, they add. Big Bang is compatible with any MIDI...

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Mar 25
Samuari II: Vengeance slashes onto the Mac App Store

Madfinger Games (http://www.madfingergames.com) says Samurai II: Vengeance, a hack-and-slash action game, is now available for Mac via the Mac App Store. It costs US$9.99 and can be found in the Games category.

Here's how Samurai II: Vengeance is described: "amurai II's move to Mac brings a wealth of updates. Environments and textures are four times more detailed, while anti-aliasing effects have been cranked up to 16x the mobile version. The game features full HD graphics, running full screen at 60 frames per second even on low-end MacBook laptops. Say goodbye to virtual d-pads and botched combos; Samurai II now supports keyboard and gamepad controllers, offering a new level of precision control.

"After the loss of his beloved, Samurai II’s campaign takes hero Daisuke from a serene village to the Valley of the Damned on his quest for revenge. With tons of enemies on screen, players can...

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Mar 25
R10Cipher encryption solution gets North America release

Application Systems North America has announced the North America release of R10Cipher, a encryption solution for Mac, Windows and Linux. It employs 384-bit blowfish encryption to keep your documents, email, and files safe.

These files can be Word files, Excel files, MP3 files -- almost any kind of file. These encrypted files can be copied elsewhere, even to a different operating system and unencrypted by anyone in possession of the shared key that was used for the encryption.

R10Cipher for Mac OS X offers Twitter integration, allows you to send encrypted tweets. Only those knowing the specific shared secret can decrypt and read those tweets.

R10Cipher requires Mac OS X 10.4 or greater. It can be purchased for US$14.99 and is available through Application Systems North America online store (http://www.applicationsystems.com) and other selected retailers.

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Mar 25
Pad Bracket lets you use an iPad 2 on a wall

ClayWare Games (http://www.claywarestore.com) has released the Pad Bracket iPad wall-mount, which is compatible with the iPad 2, as well as the first gen Apple tablet.

You can use your iPad and iPad 2 temporarily wall-mounted in the Pad Bracket, hands-free at eye-level in both landscape and portrait. The Pad Bracket even wall-mounts an iPad 2 with the Smart Cover attached. The Pad Bracket iPad wall-mount is available in black, white and clear, and works with FaceTime, PhotoBooth and more.

ClayWare has also released a free app designed to enhance your wall-mounted iPad and iPad 2 experience. Video Loop Presenter is an app that allows you to loop video for your trade shows, presentations and other video display needs.

The Pad Bracket retails for US$24.95. ClayWare offers discounts on multiple units: buy two and get the third half price; buy three get a fourth for free.

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Mar 25
Speck releases CandyShell Card for the iPhone 4

Speck's (http://www.speckproducts.com/) latest iPhone 4 case, the US$39.95 CandyShell Card, is designed for those times when you're on the go and traveling light. It features protection, as well as the ability to hold up to three cards (ID or credit cards), plus some cash in its built-in slot.

The CandyShell Card is the case to carry when you don't want to be weighed down with a bulky wallet or a heavy purse, says Bryan Hynecek, Speck's director of Design. With the CandyShell Card, inserting and removing cards is a snap, he adds.

Cards slide into the rubberized slot, and slide out for quick access with the thumb release. The CandyShell Card has been designed to fit both the Verizon and AT&T models of the iPhone 4. It comes in three color combinations: NightDrive Grey, GrapeEscape Purple, and Moonsicle White.

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Mar 25
AcademiX 2011 Conference focuses on mobile devices in education

MacLearning.org, an organization dedicated to promoting the use of Macs and Apple technology in schools of all levels, has announced the third annual hybrid multi-site conference, AcademiX 2011, on April 29.

The focus of the conference this year is on mobility, with leading educators offering a total of eight 20-minute talks on how the iOS-led mobility revolution has impacted schools, teaching methods and students, with additional discussion of the Apple technologies -- particularly the iPad -- that are being employed.

The free conference, presented by Apple, will simultaneously connect four different universities, and will offer a webcast to reach a live global audience. All attendees, whether in person or via webcast, will have an opportunity to ask questions of the presenters during two Q&A panel sessions.

The event will be held "in person" at Northeastern, Emory, Ohio State University's Medical Center and San Diego State. The conference and live...

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Mar 25
AmigoCase is wearable charging holster for the iPhone

The AmigoCase (http://www.concordkeystone.com/ProductDetails.aspx?id=672) is a new, wearable, US$79.99 charging holster for the iPhone that purportedly doubles battery life without "piggy-backing" an extra battery to the phone.

The AmigoCase features an auxiliary battery that's embedded in the holster. Through a swivel action, the iPhone separates from the battery holster when the phone is in use. When the phone rings or the user initiates a call, he simply releases the iPhone from the holster, leaving the auxiliary battery behind in the case.

After the call ends, the iPhone slides back into the AmigoCase and continues charging. The back-up battery stays in the case at all times. An on/off switch allows the user to decide when to recharge. Holsters can be clipped to carry-on bags, handbags, computer cases or waistbands and comes...

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Mar 25
Final Print 2.0 enables printing from Final Cut Pro

Digital Heaven has released Final Print 2.0 for browsing and printing Final Cut Pro projects. This release offers new features such as a completely redesigned interface, enhanced performance, direct loading from Final Cut Pro and the ability to view clips inside sequences.

By taking full advantage of Final Cut Pro's XML interchange format, Final Print allows the user to view a list of clips, markers or the content of a bin with up to 10 columns of information. The lists can be printed or saved as a PDF file providing a workflow enhancement when handing off a project to another member of the post production team.

Final Print 2.0 requires an Intel-based Mac. Final Cut Pro 5.1.2 or later is needed for creation of XML files. Final Cut Pro 7 or higher is required for direct opening of projects

Final Print 2.0 is available for immediate purchase from the Digital Heaven online store (...

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Mar 25
iWeb Themes Park adds new templates

iWeb Themes Park (http://www.iwebthemespark.com) has announced new themes for iWeb, the web creation component of Apple's iLife suite.

The Film Theme is ideal for movie takers or watchers. The Green Fields theme is for people who have hobbies or do sports activities in the nature, and City View theme will bring everyone near to a large city. The Lighted Columns theme creates a light falling effect. The Sprout theme is for growing business or newly introduced organization's website.

All the themes from iWeb Themes Park consist of separate elements each of which can be modified, replaced or removed. To use themes from iWeb Themes Park requires iWeb from iLife '08 or later.

The iWeb Themes Box of 110 themes is priced at US$47.77. Ten iWeb Themes in a Combo Package can be purchased for $29.99. Each template is available for $11.99 or $12.99. Using the coupon code "iWebThemesTrio"...

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Mar 25
Native Instruments introduces Razor software synthesizer

Native Instruments has introduced Razor (http://macte.ch/Tzjpa), an US$79 software synthesizer designed together with electronic artist Errorsmith. For use in Reaktor 5 and in the free Reaktor Player, it utilizes up to 320 partials for its sound shaping algorithms.

The dual oscillator section provides an arsenal of timbres, ranging from typical analog-style waveforms to unconventional models like "Primes," "Sick Pitchbend" and "Hoover Sync". The two filter sections offers 20 different filter types, including formant, vowel and waterbed models.

A further section provides an arsenal of "Dissonance Effects" that further contribute to the sonic footprint of the instrument. Razor even integrates a 34-band vocoder that can also be used to process external audio signals.

| Read more »
Mar 25
Skype for Mac revved to version 5.1

The latest Skype for Mac (http://www.skype.com) -- version 5.1 -- participants in group calls can identify active speakers and you can select recent called numbers stored in the dial pad.

Contact groups are now shown in on the right hand side, allowing more space in the side bar. In addition, Skype 5.1 fixes several bugs and issues, including the iSight Firewire webcam detection problem.

The upgrade is a free download. Also, Skype has started a contest (http://macte.ch/kFahA) asking Mac users to create the chat style for an upcoming version of Skype for Mac. The competition will run over three stages, each lasting three weeks. Two winners will be selected at the end of each stage: a judges' choice winner that will be selected by our panel and a people's choice winner, as voted for by Skype users.

These six winners will go forward as...

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Mar 25
Mewshop to talk DSLR, Art of Filmmaking at NAB SuperMeet

Manhattan Edit Workshop (Mewshop), a authorized digital training destination for post-production and content creators, has announced its sponsorship of the 10th Annual NAB SuperMeet, as well as its participation in the NAB Post Pit: a gathering of users, rock stars, and creators of post-production software.

As official sponsors and presenters, Mewshop (http://www.mewshop.com/) will bring its DSLR and filmmaking training methodology to Las Vegas. Each year, the Las Vegas SuperMeet aggregates well-known Adobe, Apple, and Avid editors, digital content creators, and DSLR filmmakers from around the globe to explore the latest industry trends and innovations.

Mewshop founder, filmmaker and editor, Josh Apter, will be on-hand at the Post Pit to discuss "Recording Great Sound with DSLR and Digital Cinema Cameras." His "Ears-on" presentation will demo the best techniques for recording location sound with...

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Mar 25
PDFPen gets ability to select the destination for a scan

SmileOnMyMac has updated PDFPen (http://www.smileonmymac.com/PDFpen/download.html), its PDF editing and form-filling tool for Mac OS X, to version 5.2.2. The update the ability to select a destination for a scan. It also adds the full Japanese Help, and fixes an OCR-related hang.

The changes in PDFpen 5.2.2 have also been made in PDFpenPro 5.2.2, the pro version that can also convert websites into PDFs, create fillable PDF forms, and construct document table of contents.

PDFpen costs US$59.95, and PDFpenPro is $99.95. Family pack licenses, which cover up to five computers in one household, are $74.95 for PDFpen and $129.95 for PDFpenPro. Upgrades from earlier versions of either application are $25, and free to users who purchased after Feb. 14, 2010. Upgrades from any version of PDFpen to PDFpenPro 5.0 are $40.

PDFpen 5.2.2 and PDFpen Pro 5.2....

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Mar 25
EastWest announces Evolution Series World Percussion

EastWest (http://www.soundsonline.com) has announced distribution of the Evolution Series World Percussion Virtual Instrument in the North American market.

Available from April 1, World Percussion is designed for film, TV, game composers and producers. It has a manufacturer's suggested retail price of US$649.

It's a sample library with 220GB of data. World Percussion Virtual Instrument features sounds from Africa, Asia, Europe, Middle East, and South America. It offers up to seven user controllable microphone positions, both stereo and five independent audio channels for creating surround sound mixes, an array of velocities and round robin, and hundreds of MIDI grooves.

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Mar 25
Playback Media Server 1.7.3 adds features, boosts performance

Yazsoft has introduced Playback Media Server 1.7.3 (http://www.yazsoft.com/products/playback/information/), an update of their zero configuration media server for Mac OS X 10.5 and higher. The update sports a new high-performance engine.

Also folders can be dragged from Finder to shared folder lists. When streaming, the status menu displays percent complete and Playback Media Server 1.7.3 offers improved navigation for Aperture, Apple's software for professional photographers.

Playback can share media stored in folders or even make entire disks available to a Playstation 3 or Xbox 360. No configuration is required. By default, it will share almost any content on the users system. And Playback automatically integrates with iTunes, iPhoto, and Aperture. Users can share all content from these applications transparently or choose specific...

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Mar 25
Capo 2.1gains new MIDI functionality

SuperMegaUltraGroovy has updated Capo for Mac OS X (10.6 and higher) to version 2.1. In this release, Capo gains the ability to export MIDI transcription data, the waveform representation of audio has returned, and playback commands can now be controlled via learned keystrokes or external MIDI hardware.

Capo 2 was the first app to allow users to transcribe their music to a notational representation using tablature, according to the folks at SuperMegaUltraGroovy. Now, in 2.1, users can export their data out of Capo in the standard MIDI format, and use it to incorporate transcribed solos into MIDI sequencers, or import the data into applications that facilitate advanced scoring work.

Capo 2.1 now allows users to set and manipulate their loops with an always-visible waveform. The new version also adds the ability for users to train a set of new keystrokes, or assign MIDI commands, to control Capo's playback.

Capo 2.1 is available now as a free update to all 2.0...

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Mar 25
Esri ArcGIS 10 now supported by MAPublisher

Avenza Systems has announced updated support for Esri ArcGIS 10 geodatabases and ArcMap document (MXD) files in MAPublisher 8.4.1 for Adobe Illustrator.

The latest version of this mapmaking software used to produce high quality maps from GIS data for both print and electronic distribution can use its import tools to connect to Personal, File and ArcSDE geodatabases as well as MXD files. MAPublisher can make use of a geodatabase's spatial and non-spatial relationships, subtypes and attribute domain information during the import process.

To fully import Esri geodatabases or to fully access an ArcSDE server using MAPublisher import tools, valid Esri software must be installed and licensed; at minimum, ArcGIS Engine Runtime. More commonly, an ArcView, ArcEditor or ArcInfo license may be used. Mac and Windows users without an ArcGIS license can still import data using the Basic Personal Geodatabase Reader in MAPublisher.

MAPublisher for Illustrator is l map...

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Mar 24
iPhone/iPod touch/iPad apps for March 24

Here are the latest iPhone/iPod touch/iPod/iPad apps. You can find 'em at the Apple App Store (http://www.itunes.com/appstore/).

iStoryTime (http://www.iStoryTime.com) has announced its partnership with Yoplait Kids to offer six free children's books for a limited time on iPad and iPhone. The books are illustrated and narrated, so children can enjoy the book even when parents are busy.

Playrix Entertainment has released Around the World in 80 Days: The Game, its US$0.99, match-3 title adapted for iPhone and iPod touch. It takes players on a journey around the globe. Players travel back in time to the late 19th century and enjoy adventures on land, sea and air together with the English daredevil Phileas Fogg and his loyal French servant Passepourtout.

Media Connect has introduced Jeju Hotel Guide for the...

| Read more »
Mar 24
Is Apple opening up the graphics side of its Mac platform?

A MacBook Pro-specific update to Mac OS X 10.6.7 includes native support for several 5000 and 6000 series AMD Radeon GPUs. Apple doesn't typically include support for GPUs that aren't in shipping products, so the inclusion has some important implications for Mac Pro users and future Sandy Bridge iMacs, says "Ars Technica" (http://macte.ch/E1GAD).

According to hackintosh site tonymacx86 (http://tonymacx86.blogspot.com/), Mac OS X 10.6.7 Update for early 2011 MacBook Pro contains native support for a range of Radeon HD 5xxx and HD 6xxx cards. The support brings full Quartz Extreme and CoreImage acceleration on these GPUs. tonymacx86 notes that for those building "hackintosh" systems -- PCs built to run Mac OS X -- using one of these cards won't require hacks or special kernel extensions such as Chameleon's GraphicsEnabler or...

| Read more »
Mar 24
Lines forming for global roll-out of iPad 2?

Apple said earlier this week that online sales of the iPad 2 would begin at 1 am Friday in 25 new countries, and the second gen tablet has already gone on sale in New Zealand and Australia.

Apparently, those who want to be among the first to get their hands on the iPad 2 have begun to line up across the globe. "AppleInsider" (http://www.appleinsider.com) reports that it has received reports from readers who have witnessed long lines in Australia, Germany, the U.K. and more.

Meanwhile, Apple has shortened estimates for U.S. iPad 2 orders to 3-4 weeks from the earlier 4-5 week period.

| Read more »
Mar 24
Apple wins American Brand Excellence Award

Apple is the winner of the eighth annual American Brand Excellence Awards (http://macte.ch/bOwHu)as the brand that best meets the needs of small to mid-sized businesses. The award is given each year by The Business Journals, a division of Washington Business Journal parent company American City Business Journals.

“Apple has become the premier business brand, and as the leader of the tablet category with the iPad, Apple is redefining how we work,” says Godfrey Phillips, vice president of research for The Business Journals. “Our study found that 9% of business owners currently use an iPad for business.”

More than 250 brands were rates by more than 2,000 small to mid-sized business owners. Criteria included “forward thinking,” “behaves ethically,” and “has a good price for what you get.”

| Read more »
 
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