Thursday, June 3, 2004
Microsoft's Sacred Cash Cow
In an age when retailers hire consultants to analyze what hip kids do, you'd think Microsoft would care more about what the hip kids are doing. They're running around with iPods, using Linux and OS X. A groundspring intern e-mailed me recently about his new Apple PowerBook: "I think I may be smitten by a computer." That's the kind of passion I'm talking about.
Councils Plan To Give Laptops To All Pupils
Every pupil in a single-year gropu at schools across the Lothians will get their own laptop computer by next year under plans unveiled today.
Apple And OS Security — Communication Is Key
When it comes to security, Apple's report card reads like that of a gifted child: high marks for achievement, but needs to communicate better with others.
The French Connection: Apple France Improves
Apple France, which is Apple's third-largest market globally, has made major gains in unit growth, although its market share still lags.
Its Books Are Never Out Of Stock
Audible.com is poised to make money this year because of the increased penetration of MP3 players such as the iPod and a recent Audible deal to sell book downloads at Apple's iTunes Music Store.
iPod Hasn't Paid The Piper Yet
Apple at least appears to have learned some lessons from its earlier failures to leverage strong technology and the leading early market share in PCs.
Vive Le Newton!
This week the Worldwide Newton Association was launched "to promote the Newton computing platform."
Mac Design Conference: Adobe Exec Talks Apple Partnership
Adobe-Apple partnership is "more important than ever" with econonmic pressures leading to company's wanting to increase efficiency and workflow and media increasingly needing to be repurposed.
10g's OS X Support: Harbinger For Mac Enterprise Growth?
"The fact that enterprise providers are bringing their solutions to OS X speaks volumes about our growth."
The G5: Finally Ready For Prime Time
Steve Jobs is expected to announce faster chips at the conference this June. And the bugs and glitches that have plagued G5s are nearly stamped out. The upshot: Expect a G5 bounce in the next several quarters, as the stars align and sales climb.
It can tell you everything you want to know about the WiFi networks, including the channel and SSID.
QuicKeys X2 2.1
Inexperienced users can benefit from QuicKeys' ability to record Shortcuts that usually work without editing. However, users who need only a few simple Shortcuts may do better with a simpler macro-generating application.
If you floss four times a day and habitually use Mac OS X's Secure Empty Trash feature to delete your documents beyond any hope of recovery, you're part of AutoScrubber's target audience.
Carrara 3D Basics
Carrara 3D Basics isn't going to break the bank, and it provides the closest thing possible to immediate gratification in a 3D program.
The HomePod works if you're willing to live with some quirks — and a big white device that looks like a child's toy.
If you prefer playing guitar to a MIDI keyboard synthesizer, the iGuitar's split personality lets you have the best of both worlds.
Learn To Play Keyboard Bundle
Is eMedia's Learn to Play Keyboard Bundle one of these over-hyped educational titles, or is it a legitimate piano teacher in a box? THe answer is that it's a little bit of both.
Mercury Extreme G4/1.467-1.5GHz
Overall, the mercury Extreme G4 is easy to install and dramatically speeds up CPU-dependent operations. It's a great choice if your old Mac is choking on GarageBand.
NoteBook 1.2 And NoteTaker 1.8
If we wanted a complex notebook app, we'd wait and use the one that's coming in Microsoft Office 2004. Since we prefer elegant, capable simplicity, we're all over NoteBook.
Perfection 4870 Photo
Hardware-wise, it's an awesome scanner, but it's hampered by a flaky driver prone to occasional fits of amnesia.
Pxl SmartScale 1.02
Seamless integration with Photoshop and an intuitive interface make SmartScale a good — if pricey — addition to your software bag of tricks.
While Reaktor 4 is not meant to be your only synthesizer or effects tool, you could easily make do with this on a desert island and never, ever get bored.
The Sims Makin' Magic
The same problems that plagued previous Sims games still exist in this one. But we're willing to overlook the problems, given how freakily fun this game is.
Its stronger signal and full-dial frequency support — and the fact that it provides a convenient place to park the iPod — redeem the TransPod's kludgey look and make it eminently usable.
Unreal Tournament 2004
Ultimately, network play is what UT is all about — the single-player mode is merely practice for the endless line of competitors waiting for you in online games. We still enjoy the past two iterations of Unreal Tournament — and now we can't recommend UT 2004 highly enough.
You Synchronize 2.01
If you need to keep the same set of the most up-to-date versions of files on multiple Macs, then you're a prime candidate for You Synchronize, a handy utility that makes file synchronization easy, if not always speedy.
Software Newcomer Of The Year: Apple iTunes
It's hard to beat a store that's built into the best media player software around.
With spruced-up graphics, a multitude of tactics available, coupled with the ever-changing, randomly-generated landscapes, Worms 3D is a pleasant antidote to the glut of FPS releases.
Microsoft Edges Into iTunes' Turf
Analysts said Windows Media Player 10 shows Microsoft's effort to catch up with Apple's iTunes service and its close ties to the iPod music player, which together have given Apple a significant early lead in the digital music busines and captured the imagination of customers looking for new ways to enjoy their music.