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News Archive
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May 31 Tuesday's News


Apple initiates MacBook bottom case replacement program

Apple has initiated a case replacement program for MacBooks shipped between October 2009 and April 2011 to resolve an issue where the rubber separates from the bottom of the case. -- AppleInsider.

Developer build of OS X 10.6.8 preps for Mac App Store install for Lion

Newly surfaced details from a developer build of Mac OS X 10.6.8 provide more evidence that Apple plans to release Mac OS X 10.7 Lion through the Mac App Store. -- AppleInsider.

Unlock The Potential Of Your iPad's Keyboard

While the iPad's onscreen virtual keyboard is nice, it still doesn't compare with a physical keyboard in usability. Fortunately, Apple includes some relatively hidden features which can greatly improve typing speed as well as usability on the iPad's keyboard. In this video you'll find out how to enable these features and use them to their full potential. -- Cult of Mac.

Run Like Mad With the Nike+ GPS App, Now Free

Seems like just yesterday that the Swoosh introduced its Nike+ iPod kit to the delight of iPod-toting runners everywhere. It wasn't yesterday though, it was five years ago (and one week). To celebrate, Nike has been giving away free copies of its Nike+ app (regularly $2) at the App Store. -- Cult of Mac.

Report Confirms iOS 5 Will Revamp Notifications And Introduce Widgets

When Apple debuts iOS 5 at June's WWDC, it will indeed feature Nuance voice recognition tech... but counter-intuitively, it won't be baked into iOS's existing Voice Control feature. If that disappoints you, though, we hope this will be a consolation: iOS 5 will radically re-imagine iOS's sketchy notifications system, as well as add widgets to the mix. -- Cult of Mac.

Why Chattanooga Represents Broadband's Future

Last September, Chattanooga, Tenn.'s public utility (EPB) announced the first gigabit broadband service in the U.S. To fully grasp the economic power of true broadband, community leaders and broadband champions need look under the hood to get the inside scoop. Luckily, over 130 community-owned fiber networks besides EPB's are pumping out great service, including Pulaski, Tenn., Powell, Wyo. and Santa Monica, Calif. This month, I did a broadband site visit to Chattanooga to see the future unfolding there firsthand. Check out what I found! -- Gigaom.

Chattanooga Shows What a Gigabit Network Can Do

"We have three main goals for Chattanooga's broadband network," says EPB President Harold DePriest, who oversaw the public utility's $300 million investment in the network. "Use it to modernize our electric power infrastructure. Generate enough revenue for the network to pay for itself and be a catalyst for economic development." After spending two days in Chattanooga meeting with various stakeholders, it's easy to see the network exceeding those goals. -- Gigaom.

How to combine multiple audio interfaces by creating an aggregate device on Mac OS X v10.5 Leopard

By creating an aggregate device, you can use more than one audio interface at the same time with audio applications like Logic, Soundtrack Pro, GarageBand, or most other Core Audio-compliant applications. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

The Revenge of Steve Jobs

Apple has been struggling to play catch up to this dominant platform since 1984. But Steve Jobs has never given up on his vision of creating the 'next' great computer. -- PC Magazine.

Heavy schoolbag? I'll have an iPad instead, thanks

Schoolbags and schoolbooks could quickly become a relic of the past if a novel move by a County Mayo secondary school catches on throughout the country. -- JOE (Ireland).

How to Transfer Files to Your iPhone or iPad (for Beginners)

A friend of mine recently called me, frustrated, because he couldn't figure out how to get PDFs on his iPad. While it's actually a very simple operation once you know how to do it, it's not something that's very obvious to people who are new to iOS (as many iPad users are). Here's a look at the simplest method of transferring files to an iDevice for those who don't yet know how to do it. -- Lifehacker.

The World War II battle of machines that sparked the beginning of the computer age

The Enigma machines made their debut in short-lived peace, just following the first Great War. Enclosed in foldable wooden boxes, the devices featured series of protruding knobs and keys, resembling a cross between an antique typewriter and a laptop computer.

These were among the first ciphers, boxes capable of coding and decoding staggeringly complex communications. German electrical engineer Arthur Scherbius invented the Enigma machines in 1918, believing the banking industry would find them useful. He would find, however, the devices were too far ahead of their time. -- The Epoch Times.

What's Your College Major Worth?

The Chronicle of Higher Education reports that with tuition rising and a weak job market everyone seems to be debating the value of a college degree. Anthony P. Carnevale, director of the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, says talking about the bachelor's degree in general doesn't make a whole lot of sense, because its financial payoff is heavily affected by what that degree is in and which college it is from.

May 27 Friday's News


Content-focused iPad apps value form over function, study finds

A qualitative study of sixteen iPad owners finds that many apps put visual interest ahead of functionality, and assume too often that users will figure out which gestures to use. -- Ars Technica.

New Jersey Man Uses Find My iPhone To Beat Down Totally Innocent Man

If you've ever had your iPhone stolen, you can understand the urge to become an angel of crippling, throat-crushing, eye-gouging vengeance to the no-good perp who stole your precious. -- Cult of Mac.

Banks Ditching Blackberries For iPhones

Don't bank on BlackBerry-maker Research in Motion owning the enterprise. RIM devices are being hurled into the trash at financial institutions as more and more bankers turn to the iPhone. -- Cult of Mac.

Apple Portables: Troubleshooting MagSafe adapters

Is your portable computer's MagSafe power adapter not working correctly? This article will tell you what you can do if you experience one or more of the following issues... -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Never Bring a Mac to a Gun Fight

If you're thinking that you're prepared to do battle with the bad guys on the Internet, if you're just a touch overconfident, then you're lost. A better approach for Macintosh customers these days is to be defensive, humble, suspicious and alert. -- The Mac Observer.

Apple's Deals May Transform Digital Music

The company's plan for 'digital lockers' is winning over the major music labels. -- Bloomberg Businessweek.

In-Depth: FileMaker Go and iPad scores big for AEC Industry

Architosh talks to FileMaker executives and a key FileMaker developer for Johnson Controls about why the new FileMaker Go 1.2 is a great tool for Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) professionals and how FileMaker offers iOS development a wonderful alternative to working with Objective-C.

Mac OS X has you covered

Mac OS X doesn't get PC viruses. And its built-in defenses help keep you safe from other malware without the hassle of constant alerts and sweeps. But if you are bound and determined to play Russian Roulette no one can stop you. -- Apple.

Eight tips for travelers

Whether you're packing your Apple gear for business or pleasure, our expert tips can help. As Memorial Day and summer vacations approach, the travel season is just about to heat up. But you don't have to resign yourself to hefting unnecessary equipment through airport security or sweating out the frustrations of hotel computer connectivity. These veteran travel tips can make traveling with your Apple gear much more fun. -- Macworld.

Turning on Home Sharing for iPod, iPhone, and iPad

Apple's cloud-based music service might be just around the corner, but in the meantime, you can have complete access to your iTunes library on any iOS 4.3 device via your home's Wi-Fi network by setting up Home Sharing. -- iLounge.

iPad Apps Confusing & Frustrating, Study Finds

Many common iPad app designs are actually too confusing or frustrating for users, according to a study from the Nielsen Norman Group. -- TechNewsDaily.

The Increasingly Irrelevant Desktop OS

As promised from yesterday's post, "Without Virtualization, Apple's OS Will Die," today's post will expand on the idea of non-localized operating systems for you and perhaps give you some insight into the future of computing. The future is to have no distinct operating system on your local device (Tablet, Phone, Netbook, Laptop) but have access to operating systems (not that you'll need one), services and applications via the Cloud. -- ZDNet.

University's new SSDs boost video production speeds by 16X

When Brigham Young University-Hawaii's digital media lab needed to turbo-charge its high-def video processing system, it plopped a solid state drive into its MacBook Pro laptop. It chose the latter and its drive performance immediately improved by 16 times, which allows the lab to process the 4K video resolution being recorded by its cutting-edge, $25,000 Red One video camera. -- Macworld.

May 26 Thursday's News


Latest 'MAC Defender' malware attacks Mac OS X without password

A new, more dangerous variant of "MAC Defender," dubbed "Mac Guard," has been discovered, and the new malware does not require an administrator password to install. -- AppleInsider.

How to add lyrics to your iTunes tracks

Macworld has a neat how-to on adding your own lyrics to iTunes tracks. Get to it, karaoke fiends!

How To Harden Up Your Mac, Courtesy of the NSA

Amid all the talk of malware scares for Mac users recently, here's a useful guide to Mac security basics, from the NSA of all people. The PDF titled "Hardening tips for OS X Snow Leopard," is free.

Nisus Writer Pro Updated, Lots Of New Features Added

Nisus Writer Pro, a venerable word processor for Mac OS X, recently got updated to version 2.0, with some very welcome additions to the features list. -- Cult of Mac.

Terminal.app Is Getting A Subtle Yet Gorgeous Facelift In OS X Lion

When OS X 10.7 ships later this summer, one of its least used yet most beloved system applications will be getting a gorgeous new facelift. -- Cult of Mac.

InsecureID: No more secrets?

Back in March I heard from an old friend whose job it is to protect his company's network from attack. "Any word on just what was compromised at RSA?" he asked, referring to how the RSA Data Security division of EMC had been hacked. "I suspect it was no more than a serial number, a seed, and possibly the key generation time. The algorithm has been known for years but unless they can match a seed to an account it is like having a key without knowing what lock it fits. That might simplify a brute force attack but first the attacker would need something to brute force..." -- I, Cringely.

Six ways to improve iPhone battery life

New York Times tech columnist David Pogue recently got four iPhone battery tips from an Apple store Genius--some of them obvious, some not-so-obvious. Here's an overview of the advice, along with my thoughts and two additional tips from yours truly. -- iPhone Atlas.

iTunes: Understanding Home Sharing

Home Sharing in iTunes is designed to let you stream and transfer music, videos, and more with up to five other computers on your local network. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

iTunes: Setting up Home Sharing on your computer

Home Sharing in iTunes is designed to let you share and transfer content between multiple iTunes libraries on your home network, and stream from those libraries to an iOS device or Apple TV (2nd generation). -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Troubleshooting Home Sharing

Learn what you can do if, after setting up Home Sharing, you cannot access your shared iTunes library over your home network from another computer, Apple TV, or iOS device. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Week 21: F.U.D. of the Week

Nominations are now open for F.U.D. (Fouled Up Dope) of week #21. -- The Mac Observer.

Identify the print jobs in the queue

If you double-click a print job in a printer's queue, it will open a Quick Look window showing the printing preview of that job. Especially useful when the file names don't have descriptive titles. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Differences between file-level and block-level cloning

When discussing options for backing up or migrating data to new Macs, we frequently mention cloning as a way to do this. While Time Machine and similar backup schemes can create fully restorable backups of your system, the backups themselves are not bootable, so in order to use them as such you must restore them to an available hard-drive partition, which can take a number of hours to complete. Clones, on the other hand, do allow for immediate booting to the backup, and therefore are quite appealing as an option. -- MacFixIt.

Securing your Mac from the new MacGuard malware variant

The MacDefender phishing malware for OS X has caused a bit of concern in the Mac community. People who inadvertently visit the false "Apple Security Center" Web site are downloading the installer for the scam software and installing it. This has previously required users to interact with the software installer and provide an admin password to install the package; however, as reported on by CNET editor Elinor Mills, a new variant installs the program under the current user's account and uses an install option that does not require an admin password. -- MacFixIt.

YouTube guitar solo shows off Garageband for iPad

Anyone who has used Garageband for iPad knows that the program is a remarkable example of powerful mobile software, but a YouTube uploader named George Lambros has taken the demonstration to a new level with a video showing off an impressive guitar solo, on top of a multi-layered backing track entirely composed and created on the iPad.

You Know What's Really Magical And Revolutionary? The Apple Store

In Apple's history, there are many come-from-behind, or out of nowhere, success stories--the iMac, the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad. And then there's the Apple Store, which though lacking that iconic "i" prefix, is no less remarkable. -- All Things D.

If malware pops up, here's what to do

On May 5, 2009, I debunked a report of a Mac virus, concluding that I wasn't using antivirus software and didn't plan to unless or until a real threat was discovered. Sadly, a threat to Mac users was discovered earlier this month. -- Houston Chronicle.

Sometimes It's The Simple Things

Last month I bought a new HP Color LaserJet CP1525nw. Love it! Connected it to my wi-fi network in nothing flat. It's not a speed demon, but the quality is wonderful and I couldn't beat the price. All went well for the first 3 weeks. -- MacNews Blog.

The Story Behind Hype, An Interactive HTML5 Animation Builder For OS X

Last Friday, a bunch of ex-Apple employees launched Hype, an HTML5 animation builder for OS X. The application aims to let users easily build interactive sites that rival those built with Flash. Already the idea and the implementation has proved successful amongst consumers, with the app currently ranking as the highest grossing app on the Mac App Store. The Startup Foundry met with one of the cofounders, Jonathan Deutsch, and picked his brain on a number of questions surrounding Hype. -- MacStories.

Scam targets Apple App Store customers

One of the latest scams floating around cyberspace is aimed at people who recently bought items at Apple's App Store. -- c|net.

Go From Adobe InDesign CS 5.5 to HTML 5

In this episode of the Adobe Creative Suite Video Podcast I'll show you how create animations in Adobe InDesign CS 5.5 and then how to convert those animations into HTML 5 to be used on the web or in your interactive digital publications using the Adobe Digital Publishing Suite. -- Terry White's Tech Blog.

How the Rise of Apple Is Just Like the Rise of Mammals

An afternoon in the National Museum of Natural History yields some unexpected connections. The exceptional thing about Apple is not that it's the most valuable consumer-facing brand in the world, that it has a market cap larger than Microsoft, or that its stock performance over the past decade bested Google. No, what's different about Apple is that for a really long time--more than 20 of the 33 years it has been on this earth--it was a niche player. -- MIT Technology Review.

Google: Mobile map search surging past desktop use

Google is experiencing a shift towards more mobile use. By June, the number of Google Map queries that come from mobile devices will permanently surpass the number of queries coming from desktop computers, Google Vice President Marissa Mayer revealed Wednesday. -- Macworld.

Analysis: Pay attention to Mac Defender but don't panic

don't panic

Mac Defender doesn't mark the beginning of the Mac Malware Apocalypse. But Mac users should still pay attention and be prepared to change their computing habits. -- Macworld.

How to edit spreadsheets on an iPad

It's a cinch to view spreadsheets on your iPad, but when you want to create or edit them, things get a bit more complicated. Joe Kissell sums up what you need to know. -- Macworld.

Honoring a Designer Who Gave Computers Their Fonts

If influence can be measured in the quantity of typewritten words produced, then the most powerful wordmonger in history may be Matthew Carter. The British-born designer, 73, has created typefaces for newspapers (including The New York Times), phone books and computer companies; he designed the fonts Verdana and Georgia that Microsoft added to Windows in 1996 and later distributed freely. -- New York Times.

UTK: Microsoft Communicator Can't Connect

I am running Microsoft Communicator and this morning when I booted up I got and error message saying it could not connect:

Microsoft Communicator Can't Connect

Something changed on the system over night and the fix was to go into Microsoft Communicator's Preferences, select Account and click on Automatic configuration and click OK.

Microsoft Communicator Account Preferences

Experts Say Gestural Interfaces Are a Step Backwards In Usability

Veteran usability experts Donald A. Norman and Jakob Nielsen wrote an interesting article lamenting the current state of the art in gesture interfaces. According to them, the lack of standards for interacting with these devices puts us on par with the '94 vintage in web design, when designers discovered they could make the buttons and UI look like anything they wanted. -- Don Norman's jnd.org.

May 25 Wednesday's News


How A Word Or Phrase Looks In Every Font On Your Computer

Want to see how a word or phrase looks in every font on your computer in a slightly better layout than a drop-down menu? Well, here it is. Wordmark.it. Check it out!

Typing Tutor Meets Space Invaders

Where was this game at when I was in grade school and learning to type? Seriously, if you can tear yourself away from this game before "wave 10" then you are a stronger person than I. Z-type uses HTML5 Canvas, Audio, Javascript, and a space invaders/asteroids theme to incentivize typing quickly and correctly. Go ahead, give it a go!

HTML5 Built 3D Calculator

GraphyCalc is an HTML5 built 3d calculator that actually allows you to explore a 3d function by rotating the graph with your mouse. What else is there to say? Give it a whirl!

HTML5 Browser Scores


The HTML5 test score is only an indication of how well your browser supports the upcoming HTML5 standard and related specifications. It does not try to test all of the new features offered by HTML5, nor does it try to test the functionality of each feature it does detect. Despite these shortcomings we hope that by quantifying the level of support users and web developers will get an idea of how hard the browser manufacturers work on improving their browsers and the web as a development platform. Please note that the HTML5 test is not affiliated with the W3C or the HTML5 working group.

I have listed all the browsers on my box and the scores are below. Perfect is 400.

Browser Score
Camino 2.0.7 56/400
Chrome 11.0.696.68 293/400
FireFox 4.0.1 255/400
iCab 4.0.4 228/400
IE 8 130/400
OmniWeb 5 38/400
Opera 11.1 258/400
Safari 5.0.5 228/400

Logic Express 9.1.4

Logic Express 9.1.4 delivers improved general stability and is recommended for all users of Logic Express 9.

Logic Pro 9.1.4

Logic Pro 9.1.4 improves overall stability and is recommended for all users of Logic Pro 9. Apple released Logic 9.1.4 Tuesday, an update to the professional digital audio workstation (DAW) that adds in support for importing projects created in GarageBand for iPad. While that's the only feature listed in Software Update, the patch notes online list a variety of bug fixes, performance enhancements, and other stability improvements.

Apple's MacBooks sweep Consumer Reports laptop rankings

Apple's line of MacBook portables currently stand as the top laptops in every related category ranked by advocacy group Consumer Reports. -- AppleInsider.

Apple posts instructions on how to remove Mac Defender malware

Apple has posted an AppleCare Knowledge Base document explaining how to "avoid or remove" Mac Defender and stated it would release an update to Mac OS X to automatically find and remove the malware.

Russian company releases commercial iOS decryption toolset

The first commercially available set of tools for cracking the encryption and passwords on iOS devices has been made available by Russian security company ElcomSoft. One part of their software is a password breaker, while another part, available only to law enforcement and forensic agencies, is able to extract numbers used to create the encryption keys for iOS data to render decrypted images of the device. -- Ars Technica.

Get More Out Of QuickTime X

When Apple released QuickTime X with Mac OS X Snow Leopard, it seemed like little more than another version of QuickTime with a new User Interface. In reality though, there are quite a few features either new to QuickTime X, or previously only available in the Professional version, that make it much more than just a media player. In this video, you'll see how you can get more use out of QuickTime X. -- Cult of Mac.

Michael Scott: Apple's First CEO

Apple's first CEO wasn't Steve Jobs, but rather Michael Scott, who ran the company from February in 1977 to March 1981. Installed by Apple's first backer Mike Markkula because Jobs and Steve Wozniak couldn't be trusted to run the company, Scott has a unique view of Jobs in his youth: a hot head who ignored people and talent in favor of an anal-retentive attention to aesthetic detail. -- Cult of Mac.

Apple's A4 Chip Could Be The Minimum Requirement For Running iOS 5

With iOS 4, Apple left the original iPhone and iPod Touch behind in the dust of iOS 3.1.3, and even the iPhone 3G could not avail itself of some of iOS 4's most notable features, like multitasking. As long as you at least had an iPhone 3GS, though, you'd be fine.

Given how many problems the iPhone 3G hardware had running iOS 4.0, it should come as no surprise that Apple is hoping to consign that hardware to the dustbin when they debut iOS 5 at WWDC next month. What may be more surprising is that the iPhone 3GS will go into the dustbin too. -- Cult of Mac.

iOS: Troubleshooting Cellular Data

This article provides instructions for troubleshooting cellular data issues on iOS devices. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

iTunes: How to share music and video

iTunes lets you share your iTunes library over your home network in different ways. Read this article to find how to set up either option and to understand the differences. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Undo in iTunes

It is an unfortunate fact that iTunes doesn't have an 'Undo' function for some operations. Today, I discovered that force quitting may reverse a recent blunder. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Gray progress bar showing at start-up

When you boot OS X 10.6 to Safe Mode by holding the Shift key after hearing the boot chimes, you will see a gray progress bar appear at the bottom of the initial gray Apple screen. While this bar is showing the system will run various maintenance tasks such as checking the filesystem and clearing some caches, after which it will load into Safe Mode. This process should only happen if you intentionally boot into Safe Mode, but there may be instances in which you see it happen at each boot, even if no keys are held during bootup. Persistent showing of this progress bar may mean either that there are problems with the system's start-up arguments, or that your system contains errors that it is trying to recover from at start-up. -- MacFixIt.

The Amazing New York Paintings Made on an iPhone

Artist Jorge Colombo draws street scenes in New York using only his finger and the iPhone "Brushes" app. You might have seen his work on the cover of the New Yorker last year. In honor of his upcoming book of images of the Big Apple, here are some of his coolest cityscapes. We only wish our fingers could be so nimble. -- Valleywag.

MacBook Air SSD upgrades provide big storage, mixed speed results

The MacBook Air has won over a large number of Apple laptop users. But in order to offer such extreme portability, the MacBook Air comes with a few tradeoffs. One of those tradeoffs is with the flash storage--it's fast, but it's expensive, and to keep the cost down, Apple is a bit stingy with the amount of flash storage it makes available in the standard MacBook Air configurations. With the ultra-thin laptop's storage space ranging from a minuscule 64GB to an underwhelming 256GB, it's no wonder that some MacBook Air lovers want to increase the capacity, no matter the cost. -- Macworld.

Getting Data from a dead Mac

I had a dual G5 Mac that has served us unfailing for many years, just recently the fans have been running continuously usually a sign that the internal cooling system was failing. As luck would have it the machine failed the day before I bought a replacement machine! Whilst I had everything backed up to a second internal hard drive and selected key items backed up to an offsite backup I was left with the dilemma of how best to get the data from multiple accounts across to the new machine. Since it was likely the hard drives were perfectly OK it seemed the easiest strategy would be to try and access the information on the hard drives directly. -- Macs in Chemistry.

Apple's iTunes store: 500,000 iOS apps and counting

Less than three years after it opened for business, the App Store hit the half-million mark. -- Fortune.

Upscaling Retro 8-Bit Pixel Art To Vector Graphics

Two researchers -- Johannes Kopf from Microsoft, and Dani Lischinski from The Hebrew University -- have successfully created an algorithm that depixelizes and upscales low-resolution 8-bit 'pixel art' into lush vector graphics. The algorithm identifies pixel-level details (original paper -- PDF) to accurately shade the new image -- but more importantly, the algorithm can create smooth, curved contour lines from only-connected-on-the-diagonal single pixels. At long last, we might be able to play Super Mario Bros. on a big screen without stretching our beloved plumber's pixels to breaking point. You really must look at the sample images. -- ExtremeTech.

Cray Unveils Its First GPU Supercomputer

Supercomputer giant Cray has lifted the lid on its first GPU offering, the Cray XK6, bringing it into the realm of top supers like the Chinese Tianhe-1A. The machine consists of racks of blades, each with eight GPU and CPU pairs (that can even be installed into older machines). It looks like Cray delayed the release of hardware using GPUs to work on a higher level programming environment than is available from other vendors. -- HPC Wire.

What Bitcoin Is, and Why It Matters

Can a booming "crypto-currency" really compete with conventional cash? Recent weeks have been exciting for a relatively new kind of currency speculator. In just three weeks, the total value of a unique new digital currency called Bitcoin has jumped four times, to over $40 million. -- MIT Technology Review.

How to Make Future iPhone Users Less Annoying

The raging, loud bar and the stern, silent library are the new frontiers for the iPhone, with new patents that will let you answer your phone in both places--without making enemies. -- MIT Technology Review.

May 24 Tuesday's News


Apple obtains over 200 Freescale Semiconductor hardware patents

Apple has recorded the receipt of over 200 patents and patent pending applications from Freescale Semiconductor, most of which pertain to computer hardware and wireless devices. -- AppleInsider.

In-store iPad 2 displays expected to save Apple time and money

Apple's new interactive iPad 2 displays will not only create interest and generate sales for the touchscreen tablet, but they will also save the company money in the long run, one analyst believes. -- AppleInsider.

Two-Title Video Conversion, DVD Ripper Combo Pack Free for Limited Time

Chinese developer Digiarty is giving away a two-title combo pack, which includes a video converter and a DVD ripper, for free till May 25.

Square's Card Case Wants To Make An NFC-Equipped iPhone Obsolete Thanks To Tabs

With the iPhone unlikely to get NFC capabilities this year according to reports, waving your iPhone in front of a cash register to pay for your morning coffee will have to wait until 2012 at the earliest. Or will it? -- Cult of Mac.

Movator App Counts Burned Calories by Sensing Motion

Sounds like Sci-Fi malarkey: an app that measures the amount of calories burned throughout the day just by sitting in your pocket and using the iPhone's accelerometers to measure motion. But nope, it's real, and Movator is at the App Store for $3.

Charlie Ergen's War

A third of the readers of this column are not in the USA and I can't claim anymore that America is on the cutting-edge of all things Internet so I'll just fall back on the argument that this is happening here and could just as easily be happening in your country, too. Which brings us to today's story of Charlie Ergen's plan to dominate the distribution of TV content to America in an all-IP, post-broadcast, post-satellite future. John Malone and Reed Hastings beware! -- I, Cringely.

New gadget gives 360-degree view to iPhone videos

iPhone and iPod Touch owners will soon be able to take 360-degree videos without having to move or even rotate their phones, courtesy of a new device called Dot. -- iPhone Atlas.

Orange Boss Praises Apple for iPhone, Criticizes App Store Control

France Telecom CEO Stephane Richard thinks the world should be grateful to Apple for inventing what we think of today as a smartphone by introducing the iPhone. At the same time, however, the telco bigwig -- France Telecom operates the Orange network in 15 countries -- expressed concern about Apple's control over App Store content, and suggested that Net Neutrality concepts ought to apply to more than just the pipes that carry the data. -- The Mac Observer.

Bulk delete entries from Mail.app Previous Recipients using sqlite3

My company changed its name recently. This meant I was left with hundreds of username@oldname.com entries in Mail.app's Previous Recipients list that I wanted to delete, and a GUI that didn't want to help me do that. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Dolly Drive enables online backups through Time Machine

Dolly Drive

When Apple introduced iTools (which later became .Mac and finally MobileMe), the package included an option to back up files to your online iDisk. Apple's Backup utility could transfer user-defined batches of files to the iDisk as well as to local drives and optical discs. Backing up data online so you could access files from anywhere was appealing; however, the option of automatic backups to online storage has never really taken off. One big reason for this is Apple's backup option for OS X has switched from Backup and similar utilities to Time Machine, which is designed as a local backup option.

Time Machine so far has been a local backup system that will copy files either to a locally mounted hard drive or to a networked drive (usually in the same building). Keeping all of your data local can be risky if there's a major disaster or theft, however, so you may wish to have an online backup option as well.

Unfortunately, to date most online-disk backup options have had limitations that have kept them from working with Time Machine. For one, most online disk services, including MobileMe, don't have enough storage to use with Time Machine (Apple's iDisk is offered between 20GB and 60GB). In addition, Time Machine has some setup requirements that make it difficult to use with unsupported storage media. As a result of these limitations, online data backup has required the use of other backup tools than Time Machine.

Despite these limitations, however, there is a new service available called Dolly Drive that does allow you to pair Time Machine with online storage. -- MacFixIt.

Apple: Mac Daddy

There's really no other way to say this: The Mac is kicking ass. Not only is its growth outpacing that of the broader market, it's doing it in virtually every segment from government to enterprise. -- AllThingsD.

Rosetta and Lion: Get Over It

On March 11th I found myself standing in line outside of the local Apple Store, waiting for an opportunity to buy an iPad 2 so I could get to work on a book I was contracted to write about the new iPad. Coincidentally, standing in line behind me was an old friend and colleague I hadn't seen for some time. As we conversed, talk turned to Apple's forthcoming Mac OS X Lion release. I mentioned the rumor that Lion would not include Rosetta and said that it bothered me. My friend snorted derisively and said, "Get over it." His glib remark rankled me then, and it still rankles. -- TidBITS.

Loving my MacBook Air

For the longest time I've wanted a small and light laptop. In the past I've looked longingly at Sony's sub-notebooks, but have been put off because of having to switch to windows just to get the speed. I had originally thought my iPad would suffice but, while I love it, it's not really good enough for what I want to do, namely blogging and some light image editing. So you can imagine my delight when Apple launched the 10' MacBook air later last year. I've been contemplating getting one ever since and finally the economics of it has worked out for me, and so here I sit in my local Starbucks writing this very piece on my shiny new MacBook Air. -- the technology geek.

How to childproof your iPad

Is there a way to prevent children from downloading stuff to the family iPad and running up a bunch of credit card charges when their parents are at work? -- AppleKnowledge Base.

Mac 911: Importing clips into iMovie for iOS

You know that you can use iMovie for iOS to easily edit movie clips shot with your iOS device's camera. But do you know how to import clips not shot with that camera into iMovie? Here's the secret. -- Macworld.

Mandatory Automotive Black Boxes May Be On the Way

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is expected to announce a new regulation requiring all vehicles to contain a 'black box.' Not only that, but the devices would be designed to make it difficult (possibly illegal) to modify what information these devices collect or to disable them even though the courts have ruled that the owner of the vehicle owns the data. The courts have also ruled that authorities may access that data (to what degree and whether a warrant is necessary depends on the state). -- Wired.

Mac OS X 10.6.7 Changes Finder Sidebar Behavior

In an unannounced change in Mac OS X 10.6.7, Apple changed the way you remove items from the Finder sidebar -- TidBITS.

May 23 Monday's News


Apple's 'Retail 2.0' overhaul launches with interactive iPad displays

Apple retail stores have taken the wraps off Apple's new retail upgrade, which makes use of interactive iPad displays to provide product information, pricing and features. -- AppleInsider.

Apple makes huge inroads in enterprise as corporate Mac sales surge 66%

Mac sales in the enterprise during Apple's last fiscal quarter grew a whopping 66 percent, significantly outpacing the rest of the PC market, which grew just 4.5 percent in the enterprise. -- AppleInsider.

iPhone Privacy Screen Lets You Look at Ladies on The Bus While No One Else Can See

The latest Apple patent to surface from the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office details another of company's ingenious little inventions, and suggests future devices could boast privacy screens that prevent curious eyes from gazing upon your tawdry activities while you ride the bus. -- Patently Apple.

Mac OS X: Troubleshooting a cable modem, DSL, or LAN Internet connection

Mac OS X includes all the applications you need to access and use the Internet right away. But if your Internet connection doesn't seem to work, the following steps can get you back online. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Phishing and Malware Emails Posing as Apple and the iPhone 5 Launch

We've received a number of warnings from readers over the last couple of weeks about fraudulent emails that look a lot like official Apple emails. These emails are structured just like Apple's promotional emails, but are actually attempts to lure unsuspecting customers into entering their Apple IDs and other personal information. Such so called "phishing" attempts are common and readers should be wary about following links from any emails. -- Mac Rumors.

Details and Impressions on Apple's Retail Changes

So here is the detailed post I should have written hours ago. While many people are reporting these changes as minor, they are in fact a massive shift in the way Apple Stores operate. Firstly, there are a few small changes that are purely aesthetic. The main example of this is the introduction of large, acrylic bricks which have the product at the given table's name in it. -- Jack112006.

Former Apple employees debut HTML5 animation tool

Two former Apple employees have joined forces under the name Tumult to code and release a "designer-friendly" authoring tool for HTML5 animation called Hype. With a feature set that will seem familiar to those who have worked with Macromedia Director in days gone by, Hype lets users create interactive elements and web animations entirely in HTML5, making it instantly friendly on all modern web browsers and mobile devices, including the iPhone and iPad.

A New Patent Application from Apple Introduces us to a Breakthrough Platform Independent Word Processor

Just last week we presented a report about Apple advancing the design of a possible future Post-PC hybrid system. We also noted that it was Steve Jobs who made this term of "Post PC era" extremely popular within the tech community. A recent Forest Research related blog presented an interesting overview of what they felt the term Post-PC era really meant and this week a new patent application from Apple had a surprising revelation that they were working on a new platform independent word processor application. Whether this will be represented by their already standing Pages App is not yet known but it would stand to reason that it would be. Apple's little shocker also hinted that their platform independent code could go far beyond just word processing. This could be Apple's new internet strategy that thrusts more of us into the next phase of what is now known as the Post-PC era. In my view, this breakthrough could be a game changer. -- Patently Apple.

Making a storage mountain out of a molecule

Nottingham university boffins have devised a depleted uranium molecule that keeps a constant magnetic state and is many times smaller than bits on hard disk drives, promising 1,000-fold increases in hard drive capacity - if it can be turned into a product before solid state storage takes over. -- The Register.

Tracking a Rainy Ride with Cyclemeter

The long ride is a great opportunity for me to test out Abvio's Cyclemeter iOS app ($4.99). Several years ago I bought a simple cyclometer that tracked my biking speed and distance. It communicated wirelessly with a sensor attached to the front wheel, but at some point the sensor's battery died and I never got around to replacing it. -- TidBITS.

Apple keeps on giving lessons in retail

If you shop in the U.S., you're likely familiar with the Nordstrom brand. It's not just another department store: It's a business with legendary customer support. -- Macworld.

The Brave New World of Mobile Phone Privacy

Marketers' plans to track you may not be nefarious. But they sure can feel that way. -- Technologizer.

Don't Panic Over the Latest Mac Malware Story

As with most stories Mac-related, the malware-is-finally-coming story attracted a lot of press. It made the rounds on Techmeme, started a huge flame war on Slashdot, and set Twitter afire. As a former analyst and full-time professional pundit, whenever I see a memes like this one racing around The Interwebs, my ears perk up. And in a manner that Bill Safire would likely approve of, in my perked-up state I ask four questions:

  • Who benefits from the story?
  • Why should we care?
  • If we do care, what do we do about it?
  • What else should we be thinking about? -- SecurityWeek.

The Invisible iPhone

A new interface lets you keep your phone in your pocket and use apps or answer calls by tapping your hand. -- MIT Technology Review.

May 20 Friday's News


Apple strikes deal with Sony for streaming iTunes music service - report

Apple has reportedly inked a licensing deal with Sony Corp.'s music division to begin offering the label's catalog in the cloud, leaving Universal Music Group as the last holdout among the major record labels. -- AppleInsider.

Apple seeds new build of Mac OS X 10.6.8 to developers

Apple on Thursday issued the second beta build of Mac OS X 10.6.8 to developers with no known issues. -- AppleInsider.

As Apple stores celebrate 10 years, some employees look to unionize

A group calling itself the "Apple Retail Workers Union" is attempting to drum up support for its cause as Apple's retail business celebrates its first 10 years. -- AppleInsider.

Malware on the Mac: is there cause for concern?

Malware on the Mac: is it mostly hype or a real problem faced by real people? If you ask John Gruber, the answer might be the former--there are lots of proof-of-concept scenarios and virtually none that manifest themselves beyond a slow news day. If you ask Ed Bott, however, the answer would be the latter--he recently interviewed an AppleCare employee who claimed that the recent release of fake antivirus app "MAC Defender" has caused a spike in malware reports among Mac users. -- Ars Technica.

How To Remove MACDefender Malware Software [Video How-To]

The newest Mac OS X Malware, MACDefender, as taken the Apple community by storm. Some are claiming that Mac Malware is getting worse, and even Apple won't help you with this one. Fortunately, if you've been infected with this pesky new malware, the solution to uninstalling it is quite simple. It only takes a minute or two, and if you follow the steps outline in this video, your Mac should be back to normal in no time. -- Cult of Mac.

New TeamViewer Version is Good News for IT Pros

There's no doubt that the original version of TeamViewer -- a free OS X and iOS app that lets users remotely commandeer another user's Mac (with their permission, of course) and troubleshoot stuff -- is a Big Gun for any Mac troubleshooter or wannabe Genius. -- Cult of Mac.

The iPhone 4G Could Run 6X Faster On AT&T LTE Than Verizon

An LTE-capable iPhone isn't likely to be unveiled until 2012, but when it does, you may want to sign your contract with AT&T, as early test speed results show that Ma Bell's LTE network might be up to six times faster than Verizon's. -- Cult of Mac.

Verizon CFO Confirms That iPhone 5 Will Work On Any Network

Verizon's Chief Financial Officer has confirmed that whenever the next iPhone debuts, it'll be a true world phone, capable of operating on both CDMA and GSM networks with the same hardware. One handset to rule them all. -- Cult of Mac.

Tour an iPad-controlled Smart House

Take a trip through this iPad-controlled abode -- where the owners set the thermostat, spy on loved ones, set the alarm and watch movies thanks to Apple's magical device. -- Cult of Mac.

Debugging a Dock Crash Restart

I had a problem come up this morning on OS X. The Dock kept crashing and rebooting making both my CPU's run at 100%. Since it did not happen when I booted from another system it was not hardware. I tried rebuilding the system but that did not fix it.

Come to find out it was corrupt .plist files. I trashed: com.apple.dock.plist, com.apple.dock.plist.BKguogr, com.apple.dock.plist.sKXuRBX and com.apple.finder.plist (everything with "dock" in it); which were in ~user/Library/Preferences.

I rebooted and all was forgiven. Of course I had to restock my Dock but that's a small price.

Rosetta Stones in the Road

Guess what happens when you try to run a PPC application on Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion)?

Rosetta Warning

This Is The App At The Heart Of Apple Store 2.0

Screenshots of Apple's new RetailMe application for internal iPads have surfaced today. Full of attractive new features, the software is expected to be the tool every Apple retail employee uses when 'Apple Store 2.0' goes live on Sunday. -- Cult of Mac.

Apple patent adds clues to streaming music service

Apple's anticipated cloud-based music streaming service could could offer faster playback of Internet-stored content by syncing just small snippets of songs via iTunes. -- AppleInsider.

Fix random lengthy pauses in OS X by correcting bad blocks

If you find your Mac is running slowly, generally there are a few things you can do, including running a general maintenance routine, deleting unneeded files to keep at least 10 percent of your boot drive free, increasing the installed RAM, and quitting unused applications (both foreground and background) that you may have installed. In addition to this, one possible cause of slowdowns is if your hard drive contains undetected bad blocks, and forcing the system to remap them can result in things running smoothly again. -- MacFixIt.

How to use iChat and AirPort to easily transfer files without Internet or external drives

Occasionally a situation arises where you need to transfer a file to someone but you have forgotten your external hard drive or burnable disc. In these situations, you can set up a private network and use iChat to easily transfer the file. This is particularly useful when no Internet is present. -- MacFixIt.

Suit charges AT&T overcharges as much as 300% for iPhone data

Isn't AT&T the one that overestimated data use on wired nets by 4,700%? Yes, it was. -- ITworld.

How to improve your iPhone's battery by, like, a billion percent

I've been perpetually cranky about my iPhone (in part, just 'cause it's an iPhone), but in a major part because the battery couldn't last a full day, even with barely any use.

I don't talk on my iPhone. I just don't. I use it for email almost exclusively. Even so (and yes, I check email every hour or so), the phone shouldn't run out of juice in 10 hours. It just shouldn't.

There's a setting in the Settings app, in the Mail, Contacts, Calendars section. Flick down, until you see Fetch New Data. If your battery is getting sucked down, it might be set to something like "Push" or "15 Min." -- ZDNet.

Using iTunes' Restore From Backup command

Restore from Backup is a little-known troubleshooting asset that can prove useful in a variety of situations. Ted Landau tells you why the command should definitely be in your troubleshooting arsenal. -- Macworld.

Imagining the CLI For the Modern Machine

TermKit is a re-think of the storied Unix terminal, where human views, input and data pipes are separated. Output viewers render any kind of data usefully. It may not be a new idea, but it's certainly a new take on it.

May 19 Thursday's News


Apple signs licensing deal with EMI for iTunes cloud service

Music industry sources claim that Apple has signed a cloud-music licensing agreement with music label EMI and is "very near" to completing deals with Universal and Sony, according to a new report. -- AppleInsider.

As Carolina data center debut looms, Apple expanding in Silicon Valley too

Apple is said to be quickly building another new data center in Silicon Valley in addition to the massive North Carolina facility set to open any day now, ahead of the anticipated "iCloud" service. -- AppleInsider.

Developers ask Apple for help against patent troll via bug reports

A company called Lodsys is suing iOS app developers for using Apple's in-app purchase APIs, and now developer Mike Lee is rallying developers to submit bug reports to Apple in hopes that the company will come to their aid. -- Ars Technica.

How Apple's stores created a retail giant

On the 10th anniversary of Apple's first store, CNET takes a look at how it got to 320 stores and avoided an early idea to tempt you with pastries

Armed Robbers Follow Houston Apple Store Buyers Home

According to a report on local television station KHOU Channel 11 you just might get more than you bargained for after your next trip to a local Apple Store in Houston, Texas. According to authorities in Houston there have been at least six Apple customers in Houston who have been followed home and robbed at gunpoint. -- Cult of Mac.

Astounding JH16 Pro Earphones Sound -- and Priced -- Like Pure Gold

The JH Audio JH16 Pro in-ear monitors are an exercise in uncompromising performance. These bad boys are very strong in three main categories - sound, comfort and longevity (oh! and price.) -- .

AppleCare Support Rep Says There's An Explosion Of Malware On The Mac

Think recent reports that Mac malware is a very real threat are just another example of security researchers crying wolf? Think again. An AppleCare support representative says that not only are call centers being inundated with reports about the MacDefender malware, but that Apple employees who help customers remove it from their computer can be fired. -- Cult of Mac.

This Weekend, Prepare To Meet The Apple Store 2.0

It is increasingly looking like the huge event Apple has in store for May 22nd isn't a new product launch, but instead the unveiling of what is being christened Apple Store 2.0... an all new and improved retail experience which could also debut NFC-based payments, and possibly a surprise from Square. -- Cult of Mac.

iOS: Understanding the SIM PIN

You can lock your SIM card so that it can't be used without a Personal Identification Number (PIN). You must enter the PIN each time you turn iPhone or iPad Wi-Fi + 3G off and turn it back on again. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

iMac Hard Drives: Why Did Apple Make Them Hard to Replace?

If you buy a new 2011 iMac and decide to replace its internal hard drive with a higher-capacity third-party drive, be prepared for trouble. As detailed by Other World Computing (makers of third-party drive upgrades), what had already been difficult to do is now near impossible. -- The Mac Observer.

Apple F.U.D. of the Week

NOMINATIONS are now open for F.U.D. (Fouled Up Dope) of week #20.

DEFINITION: F.U.D. of the Week is given to the most deserving reporter, pundit or analyst who shows us the way not to go, the path not to take, the road not to travel. These zeroes sacrifice their integrity, their honor, their objectivity and our sanity in a pathetic attempt to spread Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt across the interwebs and give us a worserer understanding of the world in which we live in. Extra credit is awarded to them what ought to know better.


  1. Post a link to the nominee's Fouled Up material, along with the date of the source material. Including Fouled Up Dopey quotes is optional but highly encouraged.
  2. Only Fouled Up Dopey material posted during the pertinent week (Friday, May 13 through Thursday, May 19) will be considered.
  3. AFB members get three votes each which they may bestow upon one or more lucky nominees as they will.
  4. Griping, moaning, whining and general pettiness is both condoned and expected.
  5. Voting will close each Saturday and be tabulated and announced each Sunday... if we feel like it.

Differences between update options for OS X

When new updates are issued for OS X or when people are troubleshooting some aspects of the OS, many times the use of a Combo updater is recommended instead of a standard updater for OS X. If you are unfamiliar with the updating options that Apple provides for OS X, then these recommendations could be a little confusing. -- MacFixIt.

Parallels Transporter Launches on the Mac App Store, Makes the Move from a PC to a Mac Easy

Parallels today announced the launch of Parallels Transporter, an application that makes the move from a Windows PC to a Mac easy by automatically transferring music, pictures, Internet bookmarks, documents and more. Parallels Transporter is available on the Mac App Store today.

Finding Family History Online

For those on a genealogy quest, large or small, these are exciting times. Amateur family sleuths are taking advantage of the vast and growing trove of digitized records on sites like Ancestry.com, FamilyLink.com and Geni.com. More often these days, researchers are turning to social networks for help in discovering connections to the dead, and to the living. -- New York Times.

Searching for a Job? Try Looking at Your Hand-Held First

Monster.com, the cleanup hitter of the online job industry, last month released the app (free on iPhone and soon on iPad), which deserves a spot on the phone of everyone who's looking for work. -- New York Times.

May 18 Wednesday's News


Digital Camera RAW Compatibility Update 3.7

Digital Camera RAW Compatibility Update 3.7 adds RAW image compatibility to Aperture 3 and iPhoto '11.

ProKit 7.0 (Snow Leopard 10.6.6 and later)

ProKit 7.0 (Snow Leopard 10.6.6 and later) fixes minor issues and is recommended for users of Final Cut Pro, Motion, Soundtrack Pro, DVD Studio Pro, iPhoto, Aperture, Final Cut Express, Logic Pro, MainStage, Logic Express and iAd Producer.

Apple gearing up for back-to-school promotion as early as next week

Apple as early as next week will once again announce its annual back-to-school promotion that has historically offered a free or discounted iOS device to customers purchasing of a new Mac, an event that may prove to be one of the main topics of discussion at the much-hyped employee meetings set to be held at the company's retail stores this Sunday. -- AppleInsider.

Apple developing advanced 'media streaming engine' for iOS, Mac OS

Apple employees are at work on improved media streaming technology at the company's Cupertino, Calif., headquarters, as rumors of a so-called "iCloud" service continue to pick up steam. -- AppleInsider.

Audience powers iPhone 4's impressive noise cancellation

iFixit has discovered that the iPhone 4's "impressive" noise cancellation capabilities are powered by Audience, which is also used in the Nexus One.

Will Square And Apple Stores Announce Partnership On Monday?

On Tuesday this week Square started passing out invitations to the companies first special event. The event will take place at Square's headquarters in San Francisco on May 23rd at 10:00 AM PDT. Some "exciting news" will be announced. -- Cult of Mac.

Mac OS X 10.7 Lion A Guided Tour -- Inside Developer Preview 3

My most favorite feature of Mac OS X Lion, Mission Control, now has a separate control panel in System Preferences in Mac OS X Lion Developer Preview 3. However, this isn't the only new thing you'll find in the latest release of Mac OS X Lion. -- Cult of Mac.

To Make Future iPhones Into Scanners, Apple Envisions A New iOS App

Apple's had patents float through the USPTO, hinting that they were working on a new technology that could let you just swipe a future iPhone's display over a document to scan it and translate it into OCR text. Now a new patent has emerged, and it fits another piece into the puzzle. -- Patently Apple.

How To Buy New Must-Have Products For Next To Nothing

The Internet has generated some interesting new ways to shop over the past few years. There's no shortage of web sites offering deals -- everything from daily deals to members-only private sales. But when it comes to real jaw-dropping deals, there's one company that seems to have figured out a way to really deliver. And it must be working for its customers because the company has been around for years and more and more people are using it. -- How Life Works.

Scared Yet? AT&T Hopes to Charge for Smartphone Security

AT&T can't wait for us to be scared enough to be willing to pay for security services on our smartphones. In an interview with Reuters, John Stankey, president and CEO of AT&T Business Solutions (the company's enterprise division) said his company has had a hard time charging consumers for security services, in part because they aren't yet sufficiently frightened about the risk of attack. -- The Mac Observer.

Apple Raising iBookstore Visibility by Exhibiting at BookExpo America for the First Time

paidContent reports that Apple is looking to increase the visibility of its iBookstore by participating in the upcoming BookExpo America trade show with a booth in a "prime location" on the exhibit floor. The booth marks Apple's first appearance at the event and a rare appearance by the company at a third-party trade show, especially since its effort to essentially eliminate such participation that culminated in the company exiting Macworld Expo several years ago.

Apple Proposes Standard for Smaller SIM Cards to Make Even Thinner iPhones

Reuters reports that Apple has submitted a proposal for a standardized SIM card design smaller than the micro-SIM currently used in the iPhone 4 and iPad, with the new design having apparently won the backing of French carrier Orange. The design would reportedly allow Apple and other companies adopting the card to design smaller and thinner devices.

How to protect your Mac from recent malware

Recently a new series of Trojan horse attempts have targeted OS X users with downloadable malware applications that try to lure you to providing personal information, and with malicious Web sites that trick you into downloading malware onto your systems. Despite warnings about these new malware attempts, numerous people have fallen for these efforts and have downloaded and installed the malware distributed by these sites.

In the past few days since these scams surfaced, a number of MacFixIt readers have contacted us wondering about whether or not their systems are safe after having seen the site on their systems or even downloading the files to their computers. They want to know what they can do to check for and remove the malware. -- MacFixIt.

Apple staff raking in the cash

$419,528 profit per head: Apple earned a massive profit of $419,528 per employee in the past 12 months. That beats Google, Microsoft, Intel and a bunch of other big tech companies by quite some margin. -- Royal Pingdom.

Creation Myth: Xerox PARC, Apple, and the truth about innovation

Xerox PARC was the innovation arm of the Xerox Corporation. In 1970, Xerox had assembled the world's greatest computer engineers and programmers, and for the next ten years they had an unparalleled run of innovation and invention. By 1979, Apple was already one of the hottest tech firms in the country. So Jobs proposed a deal: he would allow Xerox to buy a hundred thousand shares of his company for a million dollars--its highly anticipated I.P.O. was just a year away--if PARC would "open its kimono." Jobs was given a couple of tours, and he ended up standing in front of a Xerox Alto, PARC's prized personal computer. -- The New Yorker.

Preparing for the End of PowerPC Support When Lion Arrives

While waiting for Lion, the upcoming 10.7 release of Apple's OS X, word has spread that - at least in the Developer's Preview Releases making the rounds - there is no support for Rosetta. -- Low End Mac.

What It's Like Being Interviewed For A Job At Apple

Getting a job at Apple isn't going to be easy. You're going to have to answer highly technical questions, and talk about your personal life a little bit. -- Business Insider.

It's the human threat, stupid

Anyone who has worked to defend enterprise secrets from theft knows that the answer to success certainly doesn't come from technology alone. -- Network World.

We're doomed to insecurity in the cloud and on thin clients

In the past few weeks, we've seen authentication token leaks from Facebook; a rise in mobile malware; major networks running without a firewall and with unpatched major software; and an array of security appliance vulnerabilities. Secunia, which doesn't track every software product, is still publishing 250 to 350 vulnerabilities announcements per week. Some of the exploited technologies may be relatively new, but in terms of security, it's really more of the same.

Now some people think cloud computing and thin clients will decrease security risks and usher in an age of fewer exploits. I'm not so hopeful. -- InfoWorld.

Six unexpected uses for the Application Switcher

From hiding and quitting applications to transferring information between documents, Macworld shows you how the Application Switcher can help you throughout the day.

Application Switcher

Application Switcher key combinations:

  • Command-Tab
    Cycle forward through open applications. Keep the Command key pressed continuously, while pressing and releasing the Tab key as desired. Pressing it one time will switch to the previous application you were using. You can also use Command-~ (Command-tilde) to cycle backward through open applications. You can also use the mouse, arrow keys, or (if your mouse has one) scroll wheel to select an application in the Command-Tab row.
  • Command-Shift-Tab
    Cycle backward through open applications. Keep the Command key pressed continuously, while pressing and releasing the Tab and Shift keys as desired.
  • Command-H
    Hides an application that you have selected via Application Switcher. The Command key must be held continuously from the time your selection is made until you press H. After hiding an application, you must select another via Application Switcher, or it will return to the foreground when you release Command.
  • Command-Q
    Quit an application. This is a common key combination independent of the Dock, but it may be useful with Application Switcher.

May 17 Tuesday's News


Apple planning major product launch for 10th retail anniversary?

Apple retail is reportedly planning something big for its 10-year anniversary. We are cautiously optimistic--Apple retail often holds secret meetings that turn out to be nothing. -- Boy Genius Report.

Listen to Nuance Text-to-Speech Voices in Mac OS X Lion

We've been speculating on Apple's partnership with Nuance for some weeks now, and confirmation the two companies are working together comes with the new speech technology discovered in the Mac OS X Lion beta. Now you can hear those new voices for yourself. -- Cult of Mac.

New HDHomeRun Streams Live TV to Your iPad

It may not be as pretty as an Apple product (but seriously -- what is), and at $180, it's almost double the price of the ATV. But Elgato's HDHomeRun comes in swinging for the fences with a trick Apple's little black coaster doesn't have: the ability to stream live TV, in HD, to your Mac or iPad -- even over a 3G connection.

Hundreds Of Users Hit By iTunes 'Invalid Address' Error, Here's How To Fix It

A growing number of iTunes customers are reporting that they are unable to make purchases or upgrade apps, and Apple's new method of validating addresses might be to blame. Here's what went wrong, and how to fix it. -- Cult of Mac.

Apple: Analyst Says No LTE in iPhone 5; To Add Sprint, T-Mobile

Apple's iPhone 5 launch in September isn't likely to include LTE functionality, Jefferies & Co. analyst Peter Misek asserts in a research note. -- Forbes.

Super AMOLED Plus vs. Retina vs. Super LCD vs. Nova screens: What's the difference?

his is a primer for people who are unfamiliar with screen technology. -- iPhone Atlas.

Apple support options

Hello, and thank you for purchasing your product from Apple! We're thrilled to welcome you to the Apple family. We've assembled a wealth of awesome resources at Apple.com to help you get the most out of your new computer or iPod. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

iOS: Setting up Home Sharing on your device

With Home Sharing in iOS 4.3 or later, you can stream your entire iTunes library over your home Wi-Fi network from your Mac or PC right to your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Looking to upgrade your Mac's RAM? Don't look to Apple

There are a couple of reasons why you might consider installing more RAM on your Mac. These can include needing more for current tasks or purchasing more in anticipation of future use with OS and application upgrades; however, regardless of your reasons for upgrading, if you consider purchasing your upgrade from Apple then you will likely and unnecessarily pay nearly five times as much for your RAM. -- MacFixIt.

2011 Mac Data Recovery Software Product Comparisons

Data loss can be a serious event, especially since many individuals store important photos, financial documents and school papers on their hard drives. While it is definitely recommended that all important documents be backed up on a regular basis, data recovery tools allow you to recover important files that are lost. When a backup copy of your files is not available (and sometimes even when it is), Mac data recovery software can save you from losing important documents that are not easily replaceable. -- TopTenReviews.

Steve Jobs: Get Rid of the Crappy Stuff

When I was conducting the research for my book, The Innovation Secrets of Steve Jobs, I came across one story that provides a glimpse into how Steve Jobs and the company he co-founded has achieved its stunning success. -- Forbes.

The New Features of Mac OS X Lion Developer Preview 3

We toured OS X Lion back when the original developer preview was released, but the most recent Developer Preview 3 has introduced a few new changes. Here's a look at the latest stuff you can expect when version 10.7 is released this Summer. -- Lifehacker.

Angry Birds HTML5

Angry Birds is everywhere you wanna be! You can get a 70-level version for free that will run on anything running Chrome, because it's been ported to HTML5. Yes, it's true and as addictive as ever. -- HTML5Games.

Using an iPod With a Linux System

Although Apple's iPod players don't officially support any distribution of Linux, it's certainly possible to get the device working with a computer running Ubuntu. -- New York Times.

Why the cloud can't be separated from open source

Cloud services depend on open source software. Can open source protect us from the risks of cloud lock-in? -- InfoWorld.

A Long Time Ago in a Galaxy Far, Far Away ... I Was a Star Wars Fan .. I'm still recovering

I am a Star Wars fan. And when I use the present tense there, it's in the same way that people refer to themselves as recovering alcoholics even when they haven't had a drink in 10 years. To call myself a superfan might be a bit extreme, as I've seen cases of Star Wars addiction much worse than my own, but I was in pretty deep. In high school, I read more Star Wars novels than I did regular books--somewhere around 15--and I own three copies of each of the films' soundtracks. I even won an award from almighty Lucasfilm itself for the hours I spent making a Star Wars fan movie. -- Slate.

Maintain app organization when restoring iOS devices

If you have to restore your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch from a backup, here's how to retain all your folders and other carefully crafted app organization. -- Macworld.

HTML5 isn't solving mobile dev issues yet

HTML5 will likely make mobile development easier but not for some time, a group of wireless experts said Monday. -- Macworld.

A free world-class education for anyone anywhere

The Khan Academy is an organization on a mission. We're a not-for-profit with the goal of changing education for the better by providing a free world-class education to anyone anywhere.

All of the site's resources are available to anyone. It doesn't matter if you are a student, teacher, home-schooler, principal, adult returning to the classroom after 20 years, or a friendly alien just trying to get a leg up in earthly biology. The Khan Academy's materials and resources are available to you completely free of charge.

New 2011 iMac Hard Drive Cannot Be Removed or Replaced

Other World Computing has a new blog post explaining that the new 2011 iMacs now rely on a 7-wire SATA power connector and Apple proprietary firmware on the main hard drive to monitor temperature. Remove or replace it, and the iMac's fans run at full speed all the time. Boo on Apple for preventing owners from replacing the drive with one from any third-party vendor.

May 16 Monday's News


Apple issues Mac OS X Lion Developer Preview 3 to developers

Apple has seeded a new beta build, dubbed Developer Preview 3, of Mac OS X 10.7 Lion, the next major update to the company's flagship operating system, enabling the Reading List feature and adding a dedicated app for the Mission Control window management feature. -- AppleInsider.

Apple seeds Mac OS X 10.6.8 to developers

Apple has released a new build of Snow Leopard to developers, the first since 10.6.7 in March, and potentially the last before the delivery of Mac OS X Lion this summer. -- AppleInsider.

Apple rumored to release 'iPhone 4S' with T-Mobile, Sprint support in Sept.

A new report claims that the fifth-generation iPhone will be a relatively minor update dubbed "4S" that will bring support for both Sprint and T-Mobile networks in the U.S. -- AppleInsider.

Mac OS X 10.7 Lion A Guided Tour -- Mission Control

Apple is reinventing the way we think about accessing application windows, organization of those windows, and the way we access running applications. A new feature called Mission Control in Mac OS X 10.7 lion makes it all easy. -- Cult of Mac.

Evidence of Apple's Nuance Partnership Found in Latest Lion Beta

We've been speculating on Apple's partnership with Nuance for some weeks now, and confirmation the two companies are working together comes with the new speech technology discovered in the Mac OS X Lion beta. -- Cult of Mac.

How To Greatly Increase Your Mac's Speed

Sometimes, even Macs get laggy. Logging in can be sluggish, and even just routine tasks can start to crawl. Whether you know it or not, resource hogs can be lurking in your system and slowing down your work. After following these five simple steps though, your Mac can be almost as good as new. -- Cult of Mac.

VMware Is The New Microsoft, Just Without an OS

In the past 10 years VMware has executed a remarkable strategy to topple enterprise software incumbents and emerge as an ecosystem kingpin. More recently, the company has plunged head first into cloud computing from infrastructure to applications. Time and again, it seems as though VMware is beating Microsoft at its own game. But a look deeper reveals that is no surprise. -- Gigaom.

Apple releases Mac OS X Lion Developer Preview 3

Apple has just released Mac OS X Lion Developer Preview 3 to registered developers via Software Update. The update is labeled as an update to Preview 2, but according to release notes, it's actually the third dev preview. We're currently in the process of gathering a list of changes. -- It's All Tech.

Adobe Flash Player 10.3 Officially Debuts With New Privacy Controls

Just over two months ago, Adobe released a beta version of Flash Player 10.3, which notably included new privacy controls and integration within System Preferences on the Mac OS X platform. Also included was an automatic update notification system for Mac OS X.

As announced by Adobe last Thursday, Flash Player 10.3 has now officially launched and is available for download.

New features in Flash Player 10.3 include:

  • Media measurement (desktop only) - Measuring video usage just got easier. Using Adobe SiteCatalyst with Flash Player 10.3, developers can implement video analytics for websites with as little as two lines of code for the first time. Media Measurement for Flash Player allows companies to get real-time, aggregated reporting of how their video content is distributed, what their audience reach is, and how much video is played. Mobile support will be available in an upcoming release.
  • Acoustic echo cancellation (desktop only) - With Flash Player 10.3, developers can create real-time online collaboration experiences with high-quality audio for telephony, in-game voice chat, and group conferencing applications. Developers can take advantage of acoustic echo cancellation, noise suppression, voice activity detection, and automatic compensation for various microphone input levels. End users will be able to experience higher quality audio facilitating smoother conversation flow, without using a headset.
  • Enhanced privacy protection - Flash Player 10.3 enables local storage clearing within browsers' privacy settings and streamlines the controls of the Flash Player privacy, security and storage settings within the local control panel of desktop OSes.
  • Security enhancements including the support of auto-update notification for MacOS - See the Security Bulletin APSB11-12 for more details.

Flash Player 10.3 is available for Mac OS X, Windows, Linux, and Android.

Clearing up storage device terminology

It is not uncommon to see computer terms getting mixed up in everyday discussions. For instance, I regularly hear people referring to a flash drive as simply a "USB," or a full computer system as a "CPU." For some purposes the cross-use of these terms seems to work out, but at other times it can lead to confusion, especially when troubleshooting storage media, when terms like disk (or "disc"), memory, media, filesystem, volume, partition, and mount point can be a headache if used interchangeably.

Ultimately all of these terms refer to some sort of storage device, but when troubleshooting and communicating aspects of storage devices to people it will help to have these terms sorted out. The easiest way to remember drive and drive-handling terminology is to think about three realms: the physical realm, followed by the logical realm, and then the usage realm. -- MacFixIt.

'Apple Security Center' malware targeting OS X users

If you ever see a message or window in Safari or your e-mail client about your system's security being compromised, ignore it! Malware developers and scammers are increasingly focusing on OS X and working to trick Mac users with highly developed Trojan horse attempts, using both software and ominous-looking messages generated in Web browsers and e-mail clients. Recently some rather sophisticated Trojan horse scam software called MacDefender was discovered for OS X, and a similar attempt has surfaced with a Web-based malware-detection facade that tries to get you to download and install malware on your system. -- MacFixIt.

10 years of Apple Stores: a retrospective

Over the last 10 years over 320 Apple Stores have opened across 11 countries, and the original Glendale store has gained cult status. To acknowledge Apple's incredible achievement, we've put together this modest retrospective. -- The Unofficial Apple Weblog.

Could Apple be developing a New Post-PC Hybrid Desktop?

A couple of Apple's recent patent applications have come to light that oddly open the door to the notion that they may be toying with a hybrid desktop-tablet system. It began in earnest late last summer with the introduction of Apple's Multi-Touch iMac patent and now a secondary patent puts this possibility back into play. The Post-PC era may have started with a simplistic tablet called the iPad but hybrid systems may be the next wave in Apple's revolution. -- Patently Apple.

Apple marshaling for Internet content war

Apple Inc appears to be arming itself for a full-on assault on the $150 billion-plus world of multimedia content and distribution. -- Reuters.

Three Fulfilled Apple Patents Surface Covering iAd & Aperture

Every new round of product updates from Apple fulfills a few dozen or more patents whether Patently Apple or anyone else covered them or not. It could be that a new product is using a new kind of screw or a new GPS module or a new twist in the way that they manufacture LED Displays. Apple doesn't release a product until their legal team has filed the right IP documents, plain and simple. Yesterday, there were three distinct patents that were fulfilled and they're worth noting even if they're not about flying cars or magic bikes. Today's report takes a look at two great little patents covering two of Aperture 3's new features along with a third patent which covers Apple's iAd services. In particular, Apple's iAd patent is about the provisioning of invitational content and its connection and interrelation with built in iPhone apps like "Compass and Maps." -- Patently Apple.

Top 5 things to do before buying more security technology

Las Vegas --Throwing more technology at security threats as they crop up is not the best way to go if the goal is to protect the most valuable data at the best price, attendees at Interop were told this week.

"My view of the world is we've bought too much product," says John Pironti, president of ITArchitects. "If all these technologies are working, why are we having a breach every week?" -- Network World.

Apple launches line of executive DNA

It may not be in your DNA to run a world-changing technology company. But it could be soon. Today Apple launched iGene -- gorgeously packaged genetic material, freshly harvested from its executive leadership. -- Scoopertino.

On the Internet, trust no one

On the Internet, trust no one. Or at least, as President Reagan famously said, "Trust, but verify." In particular, whenever an unusual and unexpected message appears on your computer, be suspicious of its authenticity. -- Macworld.

May 13 Friday's News


Hard drive upgrades restricted in Apple's new Thunderbolt iMacs

Apple's newly upgraded iMac desktop line features a new custom 7-pin serial ATA connector and proprietary temperature control system that will make hard drive upgrades difficult for end users -- AppleInsider.

Here's to the crazy ones: a decade of Mac OS X reviews

Ars Technica's John Siracusa looks back with a decade's hindsight at his early reviews of Mac OS X. He talks about what went right, what went wrong, and what he's still waiting on.

Four bars? The disconnect between bars and cell signal

Ars takes a look at the question that all mobile users have asked at one point or another: what's up with the number of "bars" of signal that we're getting on our cell phones, and why does that number so often seem to lie? -- Ars Technica.

Fortune Thinks Apple's Stock Price Is Being Illegally Manipulated

Apple's stock is as good as gold, right? Perhaps, but that doesn't mean that it's value can't be manipulated. Writing for Fortune, Philip Elmer-DeWitt makes a shocking accusation: Apple's share price is being manipulated by a mysterious cabal who are "pinning" the stock below its strike price and no one seems to be doing anything about it.

Walking the Walk

This is one of those columns that will piss-off some of my geekier readers. They'll complain that I am covering this subject at all, they will declare me dead or at least too stupid to be worth reading, and they will claim to be departing Cringelyville never to return. Frankly, I don't give a damn. And it is important that I not give a damn, because that's what freedom of the press is all about. This column concerns a particularly damning story about Goldman Sachs, the big Wall Street bank, that is available online now from the Rolling Stone. But I'm not so interested here in Goldman, or even in our ongoing global financial nightmare: I am fascinated by the fact that the story is in Rolling Stone and not in the Wall Street Journal or the New York Times. -- I, Cringely.

Apple Portables: Calibrating your computer's battery for best performance

You can calibrate your iBook, PowerBook, MacBook, or MacBook Pro computer's lithium-ion battery for best performance. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Open formatted man pages in Preview from the command line

I spend a lot of time reading man pages. Normally, the system pager less is fine for this. Occasionally, they're big enough or important enough that I want to keep them open in a window and read them at leisure. For those cases, I made a 2-line shell script pdfman.sh that runs man to generate postscript and presents the formatted output through preview. -- Mac OS X Hints.

How to transfer files to and from an iPad

It's true that you can use your iPad instead of your Mac to take care of many common computing tasks. But unless you're ready to ditch Mac OS X entirely, you'll still need to transfer files back and forth between your iPad and your Mac if you're going to get work done.

Unfortunately, transferring and synchronizing files between the Mac and the tablet isn't easy. There are several different ways to do it, but none are perfect, and each has its deficiencies. Frankly, this is one area where Apple could vastly improve the iPad experience. Until that happens, here are your choices when it comes to transferring files between your various devices. -- Macworld.

How to access hidden files to restore in Time Machine

The filesystem in OS X is relatively clean by default when viewed through the Finder. The only folders you see are the system folder, applications folder, user home directories, and a few others that might be useful when configuring the system for your needs. In reality there are a number of hidden files and folders that help govern the behavior of OS X, and occasionally when configuring software packages you have to interact with these items. -- MacFixIt.

German web magazine goes all-HTML5, avoids app format

A German website has crafted a magazine-style format made entirely in HTML 5 called Aside, creating a "browser app" that works equally well with iOS, Android and other platforms using modern browsers, says BusinessInsider. The HTML 5 format allows developers to focus on a single code base to deliver to multiple platforms, yet features app-like behaviors like embedded maps, in-line video and touch-based interactivity.

Apple marshaling for Internet content war

Apple Inc. appears to be arming itself for a full-on assault on the $150 billion-plus world of multimedia content and distribution. -- Reuters.

Solve Mac Startup Problems by Reseating RAM

In the normal course of affairs, my Mac Pro sleeps automatically at night, and I wake it up to work in the morning. Sleep, wake, sleep, wake -- it's a routine. So you can imagine my surprise the other day when I touched the keyboard to wake it up, only to be ignored. I mean, it's one thing when I go in to wake Tristan up and he pretends to be fast asleep or is in fact being a groggy pre-teen, but he always makes it out of bed eventually. -- TidBITS.

Removing Flash from your Mac

Back in October, Apple shipped its first MacBook Air models without the Adobe Flash plug-in pre-installed. In the ensuing brouhaha, Ars Technica discovered Flash cut battery life by up to 33 percent on the MacBook Air and possibly other MacBook models. Personally, my MacBook often sounds like it's preparing for space flight when I visit pages that use Adobe's plug-in. -- The Unofficial Apple Weblog.

Speaking Up in Class, Silently, Using Social Media

A small but growing cadre of educators is trying to exploit Twitter-like technology to enhance classroom discussion. -- New York Times.

Seven Tech Trade-Offs Worth Making

To get the most bang for your buck, follow these guidelines about features worth paying for and options to leave unchecked. -- New York Times.

May 12 Thursday's News


iPhoto 9.1.3

iPhoto 9.1.3 fixes a problem that could cause some events merged in iPhoto to be split back into multiple events on iOS devices after being synced.

Apple TV 4.2.2 update brings minor fixes to black boxes

A new software update addresses a variety of minor issues for users of the second generation "black box" A4-powered Apple TV. -- AppleInsider.

National Jukebox now online, serving up hits from the early 1900s

The Library of Congress's new National Jukebox offers 10,000 acoustic recordings from the dawn of the 20th century. But what it really offers is a deep glimpse into a world in which the categories that we've attached to genres--"classical," "popular," and "opera"--weren't always so clear. -- Ars Technica.

Firmware hack can transform a 2009 Mac Pro into a 12-core monster

If you own a 2009 Mac Pro and are jealous that 2010 Mac Pro owners can use 6-core 32nm Xeons, clock RAM at 1333MHz, and pump external audio out of a Mini DisplayPort, a firmware hack can even the field. -- Ars Technica.

Dine Touch app for iPad wins UT students $5,000 first place business award

By recognizing trends in today's technology driven market, University of Tennessee students Joey Natour and Seth Elliott won a $5,000 first-place prize in UT's Business Plan Competition for their creation of Dine Touch, a smart restaurant technology system. -- Knoxville News Sentinel.

Music labels to Google: We're counting on Apple

The services offered by Amazon and Google are not all that they can be because those companies had to tippy-toe around copyright issues. Since neither company was either able or willing to obtain licenses from the four major labels, neither of them could deliver the same range of options that Apple will be able to offer with its upcoming cloud service, according to multiple music industry sources.

Exactly what those options are, the sources wouldn't say. Nonetheless, the hope in the music industry is that Apple's music service will make the competing offerings look shabby by comparison and force Amazon and Google to pay the licensing rates the labels are asking. -- c|net.

Is an SSD Size Upgrade From OWC a Good Idea for Your MBA?

When I first got my Macbook Air, I fell in love with its diminutive profile, speedy boot times and incredible portability, but after living with it for a few months, one thing became glaringly apparent -- 128GB was simply not enough room. Having convinced myself it would be at the time or purchase -- I have recently found myself umbilically attached to a 500GB USB hard drive for music and photos. -- Cult of Mac.

Video Tour Offers 'Magic Moments from Macworld 2011'

Wally Cherwinski has posted a well-produced video tour of Macworld 2011 backed with a fantastic soundtrack from cellist Zoe Keating (she's playing "Legions (War)" for those keeping score at home.

Mac OS X: Configuring and Using the Services Menu

If you've never played around with what options are available under the Services menu (viewable in most programs by going to the application menu in the top-left of the screen--which is labeled with the particular program's name--and choosing Services), you're missing out on a ton of life-changing commands. OK, maybe they're not life-changing. I am known to be hyperbolic. -- The Mac Observer.

Indicator of iMac sleep status

On an iMac use the Caps Lock key to indicate whether or not the computer is awake. It is useful for those that use their iMac as a wireless access point to quickly check the status of the computer. If you leave the Caps Lock active, the little green LED will be glowing when the machine is awake and go dim when the iMac sleeps. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Options for removing the system-wide Flash plug-in

While recent versions of the MacBook Air ship without Adobe Flash installed, the idea of voluntarily removing Flash from /Library/Internet Plug-Ins got some attention when John Gruber wrote about his technique. Put simply, Gruber removed Flash from its default location, thus trying to force sites to load HTML5 versions of content. For instances when that didn't suffice, he would load the page in Google Chrome, a browser which has the Flash plug-in embedded within it. His add-on trick is to enable the Develop menu in Safari and use System Preferences >> Keyboard to map a shortcut for taking a page in Safari and opening it in Chrome. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Ways to monitor hard-drive activity and usage in OS X

Every now and then it can be useful to track how a program or process is accessing the hard drive. There are times when troubleshooting when you may want to track what files get changed when application settings are adjusted, or which files are accessed when you load a particular feature. Apple provides the Activity Monitor utility that will show you the overall input and output rates of the hard drive, but this overview does not specify the files that are being accessed. While there are numerous ways to monitor hard-drive activity and usage in OS X, I've found that the following three options seem to work very well for identifying specific files that are updated by program activity. -- MacFixIt.

What Intel Z68 SSD caching means for iMac owners

Apple's new iMac systems came with a little surprise, which was the inclusion of the new Z68 chipset from Intel. This chipset supports a number of enhancements over the previous versions used, and Apple has already enabled some of these with a recent firmware update that unlocked SATA III capabilities in the new systems. Beside SATA III, however, the chipset does boast another speed-enhancing technology called SSD caching, but unfortunately for now iMac owners will not be able to use this. -- MacFixIt.

9 Great Alternatives to Skype for VoIP and Video Chat

While Darrell thinks that Microsoft buying Skype in a $8.5 billion deal is probably good news for video chat users, there will probably be some Skype customers who are worried about the implications of the acquisition and may be looking for alternatives. While there's probably no one service that provides a feature-for-feature replacement for Skype, there are plenty that offer great VoIP and video calling services, some of which are even better than Skype's. Here is a list of some of our favorites... -- GigaOM.

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the iPhone

I'm remembering author and Mac user, Douglas Adams, who died ten years ago today. Adams was the first person in the UK to purchase an Apple Mac and a natural futurologist who laid down a host of predictions for how we'd communicate and interact with technology -- predictions we're still catching up with. Here's a few things Adams predicted would happen one day that an iPhone already does on this day. -- Computerworld.

A Workable Model for sub-1:1 iPad Use

The iPad is designed to be owned and not shared. It is a personal device. This isn't Apple screwing you over or ripping you off. It's just the way it was designed. If you want a multi-user operating system, Mac OS X will do a fantastic job for you.

I remain a strong advocate for 1:1 and I believe that it is transformational to the educational experience. Don't give up on 1:1 before you've tried. Still, schools want to use iPad in the classroom and not every school can get to 1:1. What are we to do?

What I want to do here is save sub-1:1 schools and teachers a lot of wasted time and heartache trying to pretend that iOS is a multi-user operating system when it isn't.

When looking at the iPad, it's important to break out of the old mindsets. Replacing a cart full of laptops with a cart full of iPads will deliver a worse solution than the laptops. Here's why... -- Fraser Speirs.

Mac 911: Monitoring Internet usage

Does your network occasionally slow to a crawl when accessing data on the Internet? Here are a couple of tools you can use to discover what's chewing up your bandwidth. -- Macworld.

iPad: Which comes first, 3G or WiFi?

Using an iPad in a public place where both 3G and WiFi are available which connection would lock on or do you have the opportunity to decide WiFi or 3G?

When a "known" WiFi connection is present, the iPad will connect to it automatically. When you are in a new area, the WiFi will only try to 'take over' if the following setting is on: Settings\WiFi\Ask to Join Networks.

Developer blames Apple for ruining eBook business

BeamItDown Software, a book seller and app developer, has accused Apple of pushing it out of business by changing the pricing structure for eBooks. -- PC Pro.

Bringing a Whole New Meaning to 'High-Speed Internet'

Talk about fast. Researchers have recently reported sending over 100 terabits of information per second through an optical fiber, New Scientist recently reported. That's a staggering amount of data--it would take three months' worth of HD video footage to use so much space.

May 11 Wednesday's News


Apple, Google detail mobile privacy policies before US Senate subcommittee

Apple Vice President of Software Technology Guy L. "Bud" Tribble spoke to members of the U.S. Senate on Tuesday, and reiterated his company's position that it makes user privacy one of its highest priorities. He also revealed methods the company uses to ensure developers follow the rules, including random audits of App Store software. -- AppleInsider.

Apple Wins Patents for the iOS Virtual Keyboard, Cover Flow and a Never Released iPad Design and More

The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 16 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. The notables within this group include patents for iLife's iDVD application, a method for creating Web Clip Widgets for iOS devices, Cover Flow and iOS's virtual keyboard. Yet the one granted patent that really stood out this morning was that of an iPad design that never came to market. You just might find it interesting to see what that missing feature is. -- Patently Apple.

Watching TV on an iPad

At AllThingsD, tech columnist Walt Mossberg compiles a comprehensive list of apps for watching network and cable TV shows on iPad, including iTunes, Netflix, Hulu Plus, HBO GO, MLB.com At Bat, ABC Player, XFINITY TV, and WatchESPN. Mossberg notes that iPad's many viewing app options -- along with its thin and light design, immersive interface, large screen, and strong battery performance -- make it "by far the best tablet for TV watching now."

Apple 1 System #82 Lives Again in Turin, Italy

Last fall we reported on the sale of Apple 1 system #82, which sold at a Christie's auction for over $213,000. A rare piece of computing history, many wondered what the buyer, Italian businessman Marco Boglione, planned to do with his prize purchase. -- Cult of Mac.

Former Apple Exec: PC is 'In Its Twilight'

It is quickly becoming clear that the end of the PC-era is approaching as consumers rapidly adopt mobile alternatives, such as the Apple iPhone and iPad. Intel, which powered many PCs, could be left in the dust, warns a former Apple executive. "Now that the PC market is in its twilight, with mobile devices proliferating and stealing growth from the PC, surely Intel has got to get into the race," writes Jean-Louis Gassée, a former Apple executive now with venture-capital firm Allegis Capital. -- Cult of Mac.

Make Dead Easy Websites With Mac Design Software Sandvox

Karelia Software announced a major upgrade to the company's flagship Sandvox product Tuesday, making it possible even for CEOs to quickly and easily build a website. Far simpler than Dreamweaver yet more flexible and robust than iWeb, Sandvox 2.0 is designed for Mac and brings fully competent web design within the realm of possibility for those with nothing more than a desire for presence on the Internet and a vague idea of what it should look like. -- Cult of Mac.

We Are Apple! The Forgotten 1984 Video

From the Archive of Things People Hoped Were Lost, another forgotten Apple video has surfaced from 1984. Unlike the formidable 1984 TV commercial that introduced the Mac, We Are Apple (Leading the Way) was a fluffy dealer sales presentation that highlighted Apple's growth and breadth in those halcyon days. -- Cult of Mac.

New no-dongle HDMI solution for iPad and iPhone

When Steve Jobs introduced the iPad 2, he made a big deal about how you could connect it to your HDTV using an HDMI cable and mirror what was on the iPad 2's screen. The only problem was you had to purchase Apple's $39 Digital AV adapter, as well as an HDMI cable, to make that happen. That's about to change. -- iPhone Atlas.

Using iPad or iPod with multiple computers

You can manage your iPad or iPod with multiple computers as long as you have set the device to "Manually manage music." -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Pomplamoose Covers Angry Birds Theme, with Funny Video

Internet darlings Pomplamoose have recorded the Angry Birds Theme, and posted it to YouTube with a terrific video. Since we love Angry Birds just as much as you do, nothing would do but that we post it. Pomplamoose is comprised of Jack Conte and Nataly Dawn, and the two have had modest success with YouTube videos such as the one below. -- The Mac Observer.

How to Turn on Anti-Aliasing in GeekTool

One of my biggest pet peeves on my Mac has always been that GeekTool doesn't have the option for anti-aliased fonts. After searching around, I found countless complaints about this on a bunch of web sites and forums, but not any solutions that actually worked.

After a little OS X font research, I found that shadows force anti-aliasing, regardless of the application. This method allows you to reap the benefits of anti-aliasing without having to see a shadow next to all your widgets -- Mac OS X Hints.

How to create an external boot disk in OS X

In OS X creating an alternate boot device can easily be done, with no need to configure system files or jump through any hoops. There are several approaches to doing this, and some have their benefits over others. -- MacFixIt.

Johnny AppleSpeed: Quad-Core Intel Xeon vs Quad-Core Intel Core i7

Aside from hard drive performance, these two machines are fairly well matched in terms of performance. And that is bad news for the Mac Pro, with its Quad-Core Intel Xeon "Nehalem" processor. The Mac Pro with a 22% clock speed advantage (2.8GHz to 2.3GHz), only keeps up with the slower clock speed of the MacBook Pro .... Which just goes to show that clock-speed is not the sole determinate of processor prowess. -- MacReviewZone.

Fingers-On: Adobe's Photoshop Touch Apps for iPad

Adobe on Tuesday released three lightweight iPad apps to complement its famous Photoshop editing tool. Priced from $2 to $5, the three apps are called Adobe Nav, Adobe Color Lava and Adobe Eazel. The apps don't replace Photoshop, but they aim to enhance the experience for artists and designers. Here's a quick look at the three apps. -- Wired.

Presenting with the iPad: Tips and tricks for taking Keynote for iPad on the road

Apple's $10 Keynote for iPad lacks many of the snazzier features found in the desktop version of the product. But the program has improved markedly since its initial release, now giving you much better control of a presentation without requiring you to look at an external display. You can give impressive presentations from your iPad, and perhaps even leave your laptop behind, if you prepare well and know what to expect. -- Macworld.

Parallels: Run Windows, Linux servers on Mac mini

Parallels--best known for software that lets you run Windows on your Mac--has come out with a product that does the same thing for Mac-based servers.

Parallels Server for Mac 4.0 Mac mini edition installs on Macs running OS X Server. Once it's up and running, you can then install Windows and Linux server operating systems on the same machine, and those other OSes can run concurrently with OS X. If you now maintain Windows- or Linux-based servers just to run platform-specific apps such as Microsoft Exchange or customized database or bookkeeping programs, you could instead consolidate everything on a Mac. -- Macworld.

Mac Basics: How to convert audio to other formats

Audio files come in a number of different formats, and there are times you might want to convert audio from one format to another. Kirk McElhearn explains how it's done. -- Macworld.

Creative design tips for e-mail signatures

Do you want your e-mail signature to pop, especially when printed? Jay Nelson walks us through the process of designing eye-catching e-mail identities. -- Macworld.

Ground-Effect Robot Could Be Key To Future High-Speed Trains

As an alternative to maglev trains, Japanese researchers are working on ground-effect vehicles. A ground-effect vehicle takes advantage of fast-moving air and uses some stubby little wings to fly just above the ground, like a maglev without the mag. This is a tricky thing to do, since you have to control the vehicle more like an airplane than a train: you have to deal with pitch, roll, and yaw and not just the throttle. A Japanese research group has built a robotic prototype of a free flying ground-effect vehicle that they're using to test an autonomous three axis stabilization system. -- IEEE Spectrum.

Creating a "Force Field" Invisible Touch Interface

Using infrared sensors like the ones on television remote controls, Texas A&M University students presented an inexpensive multitouch system at the Computer Human Interaction (CHI) conference in Vancouver. -- Computerworld.

Gestural Interfaces

How do you issue complex commands to a computer without touching it? It's a crucial issue now that televisions are connected to social networks and cars are fitted with computerized systems for communication, navigation, and entertainment. So Alexander Shpunt has designed a 3-D vision system that lets anyone control a computer just by gesturing in the air. -- MIT Technology Review.

May 10 Tuesday's News


One Man's Opinion: Enabling iPad Printing

My wife wanted to be able to print from her new iPad 2 to the shared printer on our home network. I assumed, silly me, that the iPad would automatically find the printer; after all it's a Mac. It should just work.

Well it didn't.

Seems I had to "enable" AirPrint for my network shared printer. And to do that required some additional software.

After doing some research online I landed on AirPrint Activator a shareware product. It lets you try it without paying.

After installing AirPrint Activator you MUST "remove" and then "add back" your network printer. Then your iPad will be able to see and print to your OS X shared printer. It's working fine for me. And I did pay the shareware fee.

Anyway, that's one man's opinion.

Skype for Mac Updated to Fix Critical Security Flaw

The Skype application for Mac has finally been updated to fix a critical vulnerability discovered last week. Version fixes a major flaw that exposed your Mac to attacks from malicious contacts via instant messages, and meant another user could gain remote access to your system. -- Cult of Mac.

New iPhone Bike Computer, Mount Roll Up to Apple Store

Seems practically everyone has cottoned on to the idea that the iPhone makes for a stellar cycling computer -- because hardware that turns the iPhone into a feature-packed riding companion keeps popping up. The latest is Velocomp's iBike Dash series of app-enhanced hardware stashed inside their waterproof Phone Booth case that work with its free iBike app. -- Cult of Mac.

How to stream Amazon Cloud Player music on iOS devices

iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch users can now access Amazon's new Cloud Player on their mobile gadgets, bypassing the initial lack of support for Apple iDevices. It doesn't work flawlessly, but if you follow the instructions detailed below, you'll be streaming cloud music to your iPhone in no time. -- iPhone Atlas.

How to identify iMac models

Use the information below to help determine which iMac model you have. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Report: Apple to Leverage Nuance at NC Data Center for iOS 5

Apple is hip deep in negotiations with speech recognition company Nuance to use the firm's technology in iOS 5. According to reports, Apple and Nuance are negotiating either a deeper partnership between the two companies or an outright acquisition by Apple, and that Nuance technology is already in use in its new data center in North Carolina. -- The Mac Observer.

10.6.7: Set up encrypted Backup in Time Machine for FileVault

This is how to set up Time Machine to work with FileVault, producing a proper incremental backup of each file in your home folder, and have that backup encrypted. If you use this technique, you should also have a second backup, preferably a clone of your hard drive. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Adobe Releases iPad Companion Apps for Photoshop: Eazel, Nav, Color Lava

Adobe has released its first three Photoshop CS5 companion apps for the iPad. The apps were originally announced in April as a demonstration of what could be accomplished with their new Photoshop Touch Software Development Kit. -- Mac Rumors.

How to upgrade a Mac's hard drive

There are a couple of reasons--besides replacing a broken drive--why you might consider swapping out your Mac's hard drive. One is to increase your available storage capacity, and another is to better the performance of your drive. While most Macs ship with 500GB to 1TB drives that should be adequate for most home purposes, you can now get up to 3TB of data on a single drive, and the standard 7,200rpm mechanical drive crawls in comparison to the performance of some SSD drives these days. -- MacFixIt.

Apple inside look shows MobileMe fiasco, post-Jobs grooming

An in-depth study of Apple's corporate structure has uncovered previously secret details about both the 2008 fallout over MobileMe, how CEO Steve Jobs has been preparing for his eventual exit, and a potential clue as to a major project. -- Electronista.

iPad 2 as fast as Cray 2 supercomputer, fraction of the size

Apple's iPad 2 is as fast as a Cray 2 supercomputer from a quarter-century ago, Top 500 and Linpack co-manager Dr. Jack Dongarra said late Monday. At 1.5 to 1.65 gigaflops of computing power, Apple's tablet would compete with the eight-processor, 1985-era system despite being just a sliver of the size. Where the Cray 2 was the size of a washing machine, the NYT said, the iPad 2 can manage the same performance in the space of a large notepad. -- New York Times.

Apple Employees Tell the Secrets Behind Steve Jobs' Magic

Revealing how Steve Jobs runs Apple is like exposing the secrets behind a magician's tricks. And several of the magician's "assistants" just broke their code of silence. -- Wired.

Meet Apple's all-stars

Apple stars like Tim Cook, Jony Ive and Phil Schiller are well known, even beyond Silicon Valley. Here's a 'who's who' of the rest of Apple's talented executive bench. -- Fortune.

Mac OS X 10.7 Lion A Guided Tour -- Back To The Mac

Apple has invested a considerable amount of time and money on iOS, the mobile version of Mac OS X, that powers the iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, and Apple TV. So it just makes sense that Apple would re-invest iOS technology into the Mac version of OS X. Steve Jobs has pretty much said so himself and we'll start to see this happen with the release of Mac OS X 10.7 bearing the code name Lion. -- Cult of Mac.

The Implications of Losing Rosetta in OS X 10.7 Lion

When Mac OS X 10.7 Lion ships later this year, Rosetta, which has allowed Intel-based Macs to run PowerPC (PPC) software since 2006, will no longer be part of the Mac OS. This will not only render apps written prior to the Intel switch unusable - it will also prevent software installers and application updaters that depend on PPC code from running. -- Low End Mac.

Preparing for Lion: Find Your PowerPC (Rosetta) Applications

If you have been following any of the discussions about the next Mac OS X operating system (Lion) you may have noticed that Rosetta is no longer supported. Rosetta enables applications compiled for the PowerPC family of processors to run on Apple systems that use Intel processors. If you are planning to upgrade it may be worth checking to see which applications might be effected. -- TidBITS.

Apple baby Aza Raskin on the secrets of great User Interface

'Whilst most kids were carried around in the stroller, I was carried around in the first Macintosh carry case,' says Aza Raskin whose father Jef Raskin was the expert user interface designer that built the Macintosh project for Apple in the late 1970s. -- The Next Web.

Forget Apple tracking your iPhone, now you can do it yourself with Geoloqi

After all of the uproar over Apple storing your iPhone's location data, let's face it, we weren't upset that our location was being stored so much as the fact that a giant corporation was doing it to us rather unknowingly. Now one app lets you store, track and securely share this information, all on your own in realtime. If you embrace the age of the check-in and shouting your GPS coordinates from the rooftop is M.O., then Geoloqi, a new mobile and web app might be the one location sharing app to rule them all. -- The Next Web.

How to Disappear Almost Completely ... and Protect Yourself from Data Breaches

The best way to avoid becoming a victim of data breaches is to minimize the amount of actual personal information you put online -- sometimes by using the old-fashioned tactics of evasion, diversion and lying. Here are a few tricks to help keep you as anonymous online as possible. -- TechNewsDaily.

Why Fortune's Apple Story is AWOL From The Web -- And Why You Can Buy It On Amazon

Last week, Fortune published a deep dive into Apple, then made sure that many people who would care about it couldn't read it: The story was available in the magazine's print and iPad editions, but not on the Web. -- AllThingsD.

Facebook tips: Hide recent activity, shorten status tags

Updates to Facebook let you hide your recent activity from your friends and provide an easier way to tag friends in a status update. CIO's Kristin Burnham has the details. -- Macworld.

Textie Offers Free SMS Text Message Alternative for iOS

Annoyed by the cost of SMS text messages on your iPhone? There's an alternative -- Textie -- that can cut the cost of a text message from 20 cents to a few thousandths of a cent. And it works on all iOS devices, bringing texting to the iPad and iPod touch. -- TidBITS.

Why Businesses Shouldn't Friend Facebook

The news site Ars Technica (owned by Conde Nast Digital) woke up Thursday morning to find their Facebook page locked after an unknown person complained to Facebook that some piece of Ars Technica content infringed on their rights. With no warning, explanation, or clear appeal process, and with only minimal communication after Ars staffers started to investigate, the Ars Technica Facebook page remained inaccessible the entire day. (It has now been restored, with a statement from Facebook apologizing weakly and justifying the action.) If this can happen to a major news outlet like Ars Technica, which can bring corporate resources to bear on resolving the situation, just imagine how much fun it would be for a small business. Moral of the story: Do not rely on Facebook for anything critical to your business. Facebook is not your friend. -- Ars Technica.

May 09 Monday's News


Fortune's 'Inside Apple' describes a furious Steve Jobs after MobileMe launch

The shaky debut of Apple's revamped cloud service MobileMe in 2008 prompted Chief Executive Steve Jobs to chastise those responsible for the service, Fortune's new "Inside Apple" feature reveals. -- MacStories

Microsoft Communicator for Mac 2011 13.1 Update

Communicator for Mac 2011 introduces the desktop sharing feature. You can now share your desktop with your contacts during a conversation. For example, if you have a presentation slide deck or a document that you want to present to your contacts, you can start a desktop sharing session directly from your IM window. When you share your desktop, other users who are invited to take part in the desktop sharing session can view all the tasks that you are performing on the shared screen.

Using Entourage/Outlook 2011? Update your settings now!

On May 11, 2011, OIT will be making changes that may affect your Entourage or Outlook 2011 email clients. We are updating the server that historically has provided the UT Directory search within the Entourage/Outlook 2011 client. We have configured another server to provide UT Directory search within the Entourage/Outlook 2011 client, which is operational now. If you have configured your email client to use utkdc2.utk.tennessee.edu as your Directory Service/LDAP server, you will need to update your settings to use the new server in order to continue to use this feature. If you are unsure if you have this server configured, we recommend checking your settings just to be safe.

OIT recommends going ahead and updating your clients today! This will ensure your client is configured correctly and help save you from having to make the change at the last minute or after the upgrade when your UT Directory search stops working. Instructions for updating your client can be found at this OIT HelpDesk Knowledgebase article.

Codifying asymmetry: How Apple became Jobsian

Any student of organizational theory must struggle with the question of how to assign weight to the influence of the leadership of a company. In the case of Apple, the question is:

Is Jobs is the embodiment of Apple or is Apple already Jobsian, imbued with his ethos?

John Gruber summed up the "Apple is Jobsian" argument by saying that Apple is Steve Jobs' greatest creation and that he has been working on crafting the company as much as he has been crafting products. The result being that it's well designed for sustainable longevity. -- Asymco.

Amazon's Cloud Player Now Works on iOS Devices

Cloud Player, the recently launched online storage service from Amazon, now works on iOS devices through the Safari web browser. When it first went live, the service -- which offers 5GB of storage for free -- was only accessible from Flash-supported browsers and Android devices. -- Cult of Mac.

How AT&T Tracks Tethering Usage

A few months ago, we reported that AT&T is starting to crack down on iPhone tethering usage. Jailbroken users are able to tether without subscribing to an extra plan. Some new information has emerged regarding how AT&T determines who's tethering. -- Cult of Mac.

Steve Jobs Believes Apple Will Be OK Without Him

One of the most interesting revelations of the Fortune piece "Inside Apple" that's making headlines this weekend is how Steve Jobs thinks Apple will be OK without him.

Fortune reporter Adam Lashinsky writes: "Jobs himself believes he has set Apple on a course to survive in his absence. He has created a culture that, while not particularly jolly, has internalized his ways." -- Cult of Mac.

Maximize Your Desktop With GeekTool

GeekTool is a neat little System Preferences add-on that lets you expand the usability of your desktop. Whether it be adding the time, date, weather, or even your Twitter feed, GeekTool can change your desktop from a boring backdrop to a useful information center. This video will show you how to setup GeekTool to fit your needs, as well as where to find many useful add-ons for it. -- Cult of Mac.

When Things Go Awry Troubleshoot Your iOS Updates

Apple's iOS updates lately have been interesting because they haven't performed a complete restore and recovery of my data -- in other words I didn't have to reload all my apps, media, etc. after the firmware was updated. This happened recently with iOS 4.3.3 and previously with iOS 4.3.2.

In some cases after short firmware updates like these I've experienced problems with apps, my internet connection, multitasking, and a few other things. Here are some tips that will help you eliminate these problems if you encounter them.

I often take these basic iOS troubleshooting tips for granted and I thought that this would be a good time to share them with all of you. -- Cult of Mac.

Apple Sending VP of Software to Senate Hearing to Discuss Location Data

In an effort to appease the angered politicians in Washington, Apple is sending VP of Software, Bud Tribble, to the Senate hearing to discuss the storage of location data on iPhones. -- Cult of Mac.

Troubleshooting issues with no audio from built-in speakers on Macs

Is your Apple computer having issues playing sound from the built-in speakers--except perhaps for the startup chime--but sound works through external speakers, digital output, or headphones? Is a red light is visible from the audio line-out port when you disconnect devices? These steps may help you troubleshoot issues playing sound from the built-in speakers on your Apple computer. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Mac OS X 10.7 "Lion" Reader Reports

Mac OS X 10.7 "Lion" leads the reader reports today, as people prepare for this major transition, which appears to be incompatible with a world of pre-Intel Mac applications. Notes include compatibility tips, technical issues, business issues and personal perspectives.

The major bone of contention is that "Lion" will NOT contain "Rosetta" a lightweight dynamic translator for Mac OS X distributed by Apple. It enables applications compiled for the PowerPC family of processors to run on Apple systems that use Intel processors. -- MacInTouch.

SYBYL-X now on Mac

Chris Swain of Macs in Chemistry notes that high-end molecular modeling package SYBYL-X is now available for Mac OS X (Snow Leopard and a three-button mouse required). SYBYL-X features "Small molecule and macromolecular modeling and simulation, cheminformatics, lead identification, lead optimization techniques and more.

Apple malware: 6 years of crying wolf

A collection of dire warnings from the past puts this week's alarms into perspective. -- Fortune.

Apple iPad, Pages and Microsoft SharePoint -- it works

I've been trying out an Apple iPad 2 recently, and one of the topics that interests me is the extent to which it can replace a laptop. That is a nebulous question of course -- it depends what you use a laptop for -- but one essential from my perspective is the ability to create and edit documents. Therefore I installed Apple's iWork apps in their iPad guise: Pages, Numbers and Keynote. -- Tim Anderson's ITWriting.

Macs, malware and wolves: A follow-up

Earlier this week, I wrote how the changing nature of malware is making Macintosh users more of a target. That blog entry keyed off posts by ZDNet Windows blogger Ed Bott and security expert Brian Krebs, who each wrote about a new, do-it-yourself software kit for making Mac malware.

As I mentioned in my entry, these kinds of reports lead to scoffing and derision by Mac zealots, who point out out that similar pronouncements have been made for years and a Macintosh security meltdown has yet to happen. And sure enough, we saw some of that in the comments to that entry, as well as on the Web. -- Houston Chronicle.

Apple's Smart Cover is good, but flawed in real-world use

When I placed my order for the iPad 2, I don't know whether I was more excited for the device itself, or the Smart Cover that I ordered along with it. Apple's introductory video for the Smart Cover was positively drool-worthy. After nearly two months with my iPad 2 and its Smart Cover, though, I'm less convinced of the Smart Cover's awesomeness. I still like my Smart Cover, but I definitely don't love it. -- Macworld.

Opinion: Magic Mouse vs. Magic Trackpad

Apple's new iMacs give you the choice of ordering a Magic Mouse or a Magic Trackpad, but which should you choose? Dan Moren and Lex Friedman pit the two input devices against each other in a battle to the death. -- Macworld.

Bugs & Fixes: Fix calendar slowdowns

iCal or BusyCal running slow? It could be due to the events of your past. -- Macworld.

Contrite Cisco Regroups Before Skeptical Wall St.

John T. Chambers, one of the best salesmen in Silicon Valley, has been having trouble selling anyone on his company's future.

Cisco Systems, where he is chief executive, is in a slump. The management system he put in place slowed decision-making and innovation. The company's growth has slowed and its profits are falling. -- New York Times.

May 06 Friday's News


Apple and Guitar Center partner up to offer GarageBand workshops

Beginning this Saturday, Apple and musical instrument retailer Guitar Center will begin a partnership to offer weekly workshops teaching customers how to use a Mac and the GarageBand application to record music.

Papers 2: your new best OS X research management app?

In 2007, a talented pair of scientist-programmers called Mekentosj released Papers, a Mac OS X app that did for scientific literature what iTunes did for music. They followed the desktop version with an iOS app that works as a standalone program or in conjunction with your Mac. The combination of Papers with an iPad is pretty good when it comes to catching up on your reading. Still, that was then and this is now, as they say, and a new and rebuilt Papers 2 is here to take over your research management needs. -- Ars Technica.

Watch All 66 of Apple's Mac vs PC Campaign Ads Online

Apple has provided us with some of the best ads ever created. The Mac vs PC Campaign ads have been some of the most memorably entertaining advertisements to grace the television. Unfortunately Apple pulled the plug on the fun banter between Mac (Justin Long) and PC (John Hodgman) last year. However, should you feel so inclined to walk down memory lane with the plethora of Mac vs PC advertisements, Adweek has compiled all 66 ads for your viewing pleasure. They've even got them ordered out chronologically.

'Spider Jack' Will be Latest iOS Puzzle Craze

Spider Jack is a puzzle game from Chillingo that just hit the App Store, and I'm betting it will be the next iPhone game craze. It bears an uncanny resemblance to Cut the Rope and offers a similar style of play mechanic, but instead features an adorable green arachnid called Jack, whose mission is to return to his web to get his fill of flies. -- Cult of Mac.

New iMacs Feature Intel's Unreleased Z68 Chipset

Apple's new family of iMac all-in-ones released earlier this week boast an Intel BD82Z68 platform controller hub that isn't scheduled for release until May 11th. The Z68 chip, designed for Sandy Bridge 1155, was first discovered by TonyMacx86 and later confirmed in an iFixit teardown. -- Cult of Mac.

Cinema Display FireWire cable length nuisance solution

Here's how to simply use the FireWire 400 hub in your 30" Cinema Display (DVI) with the dual-link adaptor, without the massive nest of unused cable just so the FireWire from the display can reach your computer. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Downloading from Public iDisk to iPhone/iPad

On a desktop computer everyone can access someones Public folder, when that person has MobileMe account. But on a iPhone or iPad that Public folder isn't so public anymore. Only people who have a MobileMe account can go to the Public folder of someone else with the iDisk app. I found a way to download public files without being a MobileMe member and without the iDisk app. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Geekbench results show 2011 iMacs 25 percent faster

The first benchmarking tests are in on the new 2011 iMacs, and early results show a fairly consistent 25 percent improvement across the board over the previous models, and a 70 percent average improvement over the last of the Core2Duo iMac models, Primate Labs reports. It should be noted that the company used its own Geekbench 2 to obtain their results, which does not measure video card or storage improvements, being limited to just processor and RAM performance.

Apple, Hearst in pact

Apple CEO Steve Jobs appears to have blinked in his tug-of-war with magazine publishers over how paid subscriptions are sold through the iTunes store. -- New York Post.

Stamp out e-mail annoyances: You've got e-mail problems? We've got answers

For many of us, the first application we open in the morning is our e-mail client. Hour after hour, day after day, we check our e-mail repeatedly. Given that we spend this kind of time with a single program, it's important that it gives us as little trouble as possible. When it decides to act up, it's just as important that we set it straight as quickly as possible. Here are some solutions to common problems. -- Macworld.

Succeeding in an App Store world: lessons from the Angry Birds story

At Mobile World Congress earlier this year I heard Rovio CEO Mikael Hed address a small group of Apple platform developers on the subject of the changing world of app development. His starting point is that mobile apps and the app store model are transforming the business of software. Of course he has a games industry perspective, but my hunch is that what he says applies more widely. I note that the App Store concept has already come to the Mac, and that Microsoft will follow Apple with something similar in Windows vNext. -- Tim Anderson's ITWriting.

Apple's Picture-in-Picture Patent for FaceTime & Beyond

Today the US Patent and Trademark Office published Apple's patent which relates to FaceTime's picture-in-picture effect that is implemented on mobile devices like the iPod touch, iPhone and iPad. The patent mainly focuses on how to achieve this feature while conserving electrical power. Yet the patent hints that the scope of the patent doesn't limit this PIP feature to just videoconferencing. -- Patently Apple.

A Tool to Harvest iPhone Location Data

The New York Times Company's Research and Development Lab released a free Web-based tool that creates an research database of anonymized location data from iPhones and iPads. -- New York Times.

Facebook Could Be Planning a Visual Dashboard of Your Life

The data entered by millions of social-network users could be turned into revealing infographics. -- MIT Technology Review.

May 05 Thursday's News


MacBook Pro EFI Update 2.1

MacBook Pro EFI Update 2.1 includes fixes that resolve an issue with Turbo Mode in Boot Camp, and improve performance and stability for graphics and Thunderbolt.

MacBook Pro Software Update 1.4

MacBook Pro Software Update 1.4 includes fixes that improve graphics stability, address issues with external display support and 3D performance, and improve Thunderbolt device support.

iMac EFI Update 1.6

iMac EFI Update 1.6 includes fixes that improve performance and stability for Thunderbolt.

Mac OS X 10.6.7 Update for iMac (early 2011) 1.0

Mac OS X 10.6.7 Update for iMac (early 2011) 1.0 for iMac is recommended for all early 2011 iMac models.

iOS 4.2.8 Software Update

iOS 4.2.8 Software Update contains changes to the iOS crowd-sourced location database cache.

iOS 4.3.3 Software Update

iOS 4.3.3 Software Update contains changes to the iOS crowd-sourced location database cache.

Apple execs focused on software-driven iPhone product cycle, says analyst

Fresh off a meeting with senior executives at Apple, Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty said the company sees product cycles as being driven by software rather than hardware and is expected to announce major software updates at the Worldwide Developers Conference in June. -- AppleInsider.

Apple to release Mac OS X Lion through Mac App Store - sources

With the release of Mac OS X 10.7 Lion this summer, Apple will make the switch to a new kind of digital distribution for its operating system upgrades by releasing the software first through its new Mac App Store, AppleInsider has learned.

Teardown of Apple's 21.5-inch Thunderbolt iMac finds removable graphics board

A look inside Apple's new 21.5-inch, Thunderbolt-equipped iMac desktop discovered the ability to swap out the graphics processing unit board for a new one. -- AppleInsider.

Transistors go 3D as Intel re-invents the microchip

Intel has announced the commercial introduction of a game-changing new transistor design that the company has been working on for a decade. The new tri-gate transistor represents the first major redesign of the basic building block of the microchip since the dawn of the semiconductor era. -- Ars Technica.

The trouble with halos

The Mac grew at 28% while the overall PC market contracted at 3%. The Mac has outperformed the PC market overall for 20 consecutive quarters.

Prices increased sequentially and year-to-year.

I've mentioned the increasing shift of Mac mix to portables as a possible reason for the growth of the business. The Mac was one of the first to move to a portable from factor and has been pushing portability over performance for many years.

The following chart shows the relationship between growth and portable mix -- Asymco.

Rest of Apple's Mac Family to be Refreshed in Coming Months

Sources in Apple's supply chain have revealed to an analyst with Sterne Agee that the company is planning to refresh the rest of its Mac lineup "in upcoming months." Shaw Wu issued a note to investors yesterday that claimed all Mac products yet to be refreshed this year are "due for refreshes" soon. That includes Apple's MacBook, MacBook Air, Mac Pro, and Mac Mini computers. -- Cult of Mac.

Become a Paid Network Data Node

The idea behind the new service is that every smartphone is a node in a vast network. By tapping into that huge network companies can accomplish huge data tasks that require small amounts of information from a large number of locations in a highly efficient manner. -- Cult of Mac.

iPhone 5: 20 most-wanted features (photos)

iPhone 5: 20 most-wanted features. -- iPhone Atlas.

How to combine multiple audio interfaces by creating an aggregate device on Mac OS X v10.6 Snow Leopard

By creating an aggregate device, you can use more than one audio interface at the same time with audio applications like Logic, Soundtrack Pro, or most other Core Audio-compliant applications. Logic 9 and Soundtrack Pro allow you to use a separate device for input and output, such as using a USB microphone and the built-in output of your computer. Use an aggregate device to combine multiple inputs and outputs, or applications not manufactured by Apple which do not support separate input and output devices. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Rumor: Apple Hires Inventor of THX to Run Audio

Apple has hired, Tomlinson Holman, the brainiac inventor behind Lucasfilm's THX sound empire, according to a tweet from Leo Laporte. Mr. Laporte said that he had it on "good authority that Tomlinson Holman [...] is joining Apple to run audio," and that was part of a "major upgrade" that Apple is working on. -- The Mac Observer.

10.6: Slow SMB browsing of Windows Servers fixed

By default in Mac OS X browsing to Windows 2008 and 2003 Servers is extremely slow, navigating from one directory level to the next can take a minute or longer. I utilize my Mac to access the office Windows 2008 and 2003 file servers and the speed to access these shares makes it almost impossible to work from a Mac. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Apple Soliciting Customer Feedback With New 'Pulse' Program

Several MacRumors have informed us in recent days that they have received email invitations to join "Apple Customer Pulse", a program designed to allow customers to provide survey feedback about their product purchases to Apple. -- MacRumors.

How to manage menu extras in OS X

The OS X system menu's support for menu extras is a convenient way to access system and application settings and services. While a default set of menu extras such as the time and date, volume, wifi indicator, Time Machine status, and Spotlight menus are enabled, others can be turned on in their respective system preferences or application settings. Usually these menu extras stay to the right and out of the way of application and system menus, but in some instances they may run into the menus of various applications and be hidden. -- MacFixIt.

Apple's OS X server strategy: Data centers for everyone

Now we know that Lion Server will be built into Lion itself, meaning that Mac OS X Server's code, functionality and services will be bundled with the client OS. Lion Server as a separate entity is gone, but its inclusion in Lion means that a lot more users will get a chance to try it out -- either at home or in the office. -- Computerworld.

Mac scanning problem solved

A scanning software problem with Mac OS X may be caused by devices you're no longer using. -- iTWire.

Use Automator to shoot a time-lapse movie

Movies created through time-lapse photography can be stunning. And for some people in the sciences they can also be a useful tool. While there are a variety of applications that allow you to create time-lapse movies of your own, none of them are built into the Mac OS save this one: Automator. The following workflow allows you to automate not only the shooting of your images, but their conversion into a movie. -- Macworld.

Is Mac under a virus attack?

No. But there's some bad news rising on the Apple malware front. -- Fortune.

Mac Tips: 25 OS X Tricks Every User Should Know

We spend far too much time tinkering with OS X, and over the years we've picked up countless quick tips that make spending 12 or 14 hours a day in Apple's OS a bit more bearable. Have a look through our favorite tricks for the latest Mac OS X release, version 10.6 (aka "Snow Leopard"). From handy keyboard shortcuts to under-the-radar features, all of these tricks are accessible without downloading any additional software. -- The Huffington Post.

Woz and the RCA Character-generator Patent

Apple cofounder Steve Wozniak has no love for the US patent system, and prefers split-pea soup to "that patent-troll thing" as practiced by Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen in his current patent-infringment lawsuit against Apple, Google, Facebook, Yahoo!, and others. -- The Register.

May 04 Wednesday's News


Boot Camp 3.2 Update for iMac (early 2011)

Boot Camp 3.2 Update for iMac (early 2011) addresses issues with Japanese and Korean keyboards on early 2011 iMac.

How-to replace your MacBook Air SSD with OWC's Aura Pro Express

Apple offers few SSD options for its latest MacBook Air models, but now Other World Computing offers three larger, faster SSD replacements. In a combination how-to and review, Ars decided to shove a 240GB drive into an 11" MacBook Air to see what it's like to have twice the room with promised performance improvements as high as 68 percent. -- Ars Technica.

Create An iTunes Account Without A Credit Card

Don't trust your kids with open access to your credit card? I can't blame you. In order to let your kids have an iTunes account though, you need to enter your credit card information, giving them free reign over your purchases, right? Wrong. While it may appear this way, there is a way to set up an iTunes account that involves absolutely no credit cards at all. This video will show you what to do. -- Cult of Mac.

Why You Should Get an SSD With Your New iMac & Why You Should Get it from Apple

Apple's new family of iMacs launched Tuesday, featuring Intel's latest Core i5 and i7 processors, 4GB of RAM, and 3x faster graphics; all the ingredients needed to bake a super speedy all-in-one. However, there's one thing missing from Apple's lineup of four 'ready-made' iMacs, and that's a solid-state drive. Without one your shiny new iMac might not be as fast as you expected it to be. -- Cult of Mac.

Apps Can No Longer Be Reviewed If Downloaded With Promotional Codes

App Store ratings are a valuable commodity, with each additional star worth a substantial amount in sales. No surprise, then, that less scrupulous developers like to try to game the system, but because of the way Apple links reviews to individual iTunes accounts, there's not a lot of ways to really cheat the system easily... especially if the app is a paid app.

One way app devs can sometimes game the system, though, is by distributing promo codes, allowing their employees to download the app and rate it. No longer though: Apple has just eliminate the ability for anyone to review an app if they downloaded it through a promotional code. -- Cult of Mac.

iTunes: Advanced iTunes Store troubleshooting

This article will guide you through advanced troubleshooting for iTunes Store connectivity. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

iMac Fast Start: The new user's guide to iMac

Got a new iMac? This handy Fast Start guide will help you set up your computer and get you on your way to working and playing in no time. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

ISP Data Caps Won't Affect Apple Cloud Services

Various ISPs have been invoking monthly data caps. The caps aren't likely to affect average Apple customers, but they will put a stop to unlimited TV viewing so that the ISPs can better compete with their own TV services. -- The Mac Observer.

Mac OS X: Finding & Fixing Corrupt Preference Files

One of the more common causes for unusual behavior on the Mac is a corrupt preference file, especially if the symptom is a program that won't open or one that crashes frequently. Preference files store all sorts of application-specific information, everything from what your browser's home page is to your default Mail font settings, and even some things you might not think about, like what shortcuts you keep in your Finder sidebar. Here are some handy-dandy ideas, though, on how to correct the problem if you suspect one's gone rogue. -- The Mac Observer.

Exchange Text Between an iPhone and a Mac Without Internet Access

I was on a ferry this morning with no WiFi access to the Internet, an iPhone from which I could e-mail via 3G and an e-mail on my Mac I needed to send. With no wireless modem, no tethering plan and no Internet, I didn't think there was anyway I could get the text of the e-mail onto my iPhone without retyping it. After a little thinking, I came up with the following solution that makes use of iPhone apps with WiFi syncing and the Airport menu's create network command. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Adobe Releases Creative Suite 5.5, Adds Support for iPad Apps to Photoshop CS5

Following on last month's announcement, Adobe today officially released Creative Suite 5.5, bringing a number of enhancements to the company's flagship multimedia applications.

Running PC programs on a Mac without Windows

Apple's use of the same Intel chips and other hardware in Macs that PC manufacturers use allows for a number of options when it comes to running Windows-based software. Apple supports the option of dual booting with Boot Camp, and third-party virtualization solutions such as Parallels Desktop and VMware Fusion are available as well. While convenient, all of these options require you to purchase a license for Windows and have Windows running somehow on your system.

Running Windows-based programs from within Windows is by far the stabler and more supported option, but if you do not wish to purchase a license for Windows and still need to run a specific piece of Windows software, then there are alternatives that may get you by. -- MacFixIt.

Analyst: Apple will keep growing, become first $1T company

James Altucher of Formula Capital, in an appearance on Yahoo's Daily Ticker, lays out his case that Apple will become the first $1 trillion rated company in history, and argues it should in fact already be there. Citing the company's long history of high growth rates and its ever-growing cash reserves, Altucher says that the company is only trading at around ten times earnings, and that known product plans for the near future -- like the iPad 3, the iPhone 5 and future Mac models -- will continue to drive large growth numbers for the foreseeable future.

4 Reasons You Need A Home Alarm System On Your Mac

Most of us don't take our Macs with us everywhere we go. My iMac sits on the desk. My MacBook is often replaced by my iPhone so it sits at home, too. Now there's a way to turn your stay-at-home (or office) Mac into a home alarm system that you can control with your iPhone. It features iSight camera capture and and operates as a motion sensor. -- Mac 360.

Apple Wins Patents for the iMac, Magnetic Detents & Even the Touch Controls that Debuted with Apple's Now Defunct 'Cube' Desktop System

The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of thirteen newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. Several notables within this group include a couple of MacBook Air design patents, a couple of iMac related patents and even a patent for the touch controls that Apple first released with their now defunct "Cube" desktop. Lastly, Apple has won an interesting patent related to Magnetic Detents which could be found in several current products. -- Patently Apple.

Ideas For Repurposing Your Old iMac

At the corner of Liberal Arts and Technology you may just find an iMac featured on the wall in place of a Van Gogh or Rembrandt. So if you're looking for a way to use your existing iMac, in an effort to justify purchasing a new one, look no further than the bare spot on your wall. It all starts with Apple's VESA Mount Adapter Kit or the third-party iMac Wall Mount. -- GigaOM.

Lab Tested: New 27-inch Core i5 iMac/3.1GHz speed results

Macworld Lab has all four standard configuration models, and the results for the $1,999 27-inch iMac are in. The results do not disappoint, with the new iMac besting the previous generation of iMacs, including a couple of build-to-order (BTO) configurations. -- Macworld.

Magic Mouse or Magic Trackpad? New iMacs let you choose

One of the most interesting things about Apple's revamped iMacs, PCWorld's Jared Newman says, is the fact that the Magic Trackpad is now on equal footing with the Magic Mouse. -- Macworld.

Connect to the VPN at work from your iPad

It's easy to protect your iPad and its data by using your office's virtual private network, or VPN. Here's how to get connected. -- Macworld.

SECRETS: A database of hidden settings for Mac OS X

Secrets lets you customize many Mac OS settings that are hidden or incomplete. Many of these values can harm your system if used improperly. Use it at your own risk.

Spotify Challenges iTunes With iPod Support, Playlist Synching

Spotify has made a surprise announcement, and while it's still not the long-awaited US launch, it will be making a splash over the pond: the streaming music service is morphing into an iTunes competitor. In what is a clear attempt at rattling Apple's cage, Spotify has unveiled a pair of major new features: the ability to synchronise Spotify playlists with iPods, and the option to buy MP3 files to own -- both key features of the iTunes platform. Any playlist created via the Spotify player can be downloaded in a single step, making 'digital mix-tape' creation significantly simpler. -- thinq.

AppleCrate II: Apple II-Based Parallel Computer

Many years ago Michael J. Mahon built the AppleCrate -- a parallel stack of Apple IIs -- for no good reason. Recently he came back with the AppleCrate II, which more than doubles the number of motherboards, and at least triples the awesomeness.

The Force is with us: This Is Your Brain on iPhone

Science fiction fans who have dreamed of having "the force" are in luck. Two apps -- controlled and operated by mental power -- are now on sale in the Apple App Store from app developer MindGames in Iceland -- Los Angeles Times.

May 03 Tuesday's News


Inside Mac OS X 10.7 Lion: Safari adds iPad-like Downloads menu

Safari 5.1 in Mac OS X Lion adds a new window-integrated downloads popup menu with behavior that appears to be borrowed from iPad. -- AppleInsider.

New malware attacks Mac OS X users through Apple Safari browser

Newly discovered malicious software dubbed "MACDefender" takes aim at users of the Mac OS X operating system by automatically downloading a file through JavaScript. But users must also agree to install the software, leaving the potential threat limited. -- AppleInsider.

Free Planetary iPad App Transforms Music Browsing

Planetary is a new free app for iPad that's soaring up the free apps chart in the iOS Store, and with good reason: it's pretty amazing. The app looks at your iPad's on board music collection and re-imagines it as a galaxy of stars. -- Cult of Mac.

How Your ISP's Data Caps Will Kill The Cloud

Today is the day that will bring us one step closer to the death of the cloud. That crucial new part of the internet that is gaining popularity due to the likes of Hulu, Netflix, MobileMe, DropBox, Crashplan, etc. is about to get another blow -- AT&T on Monday started restricting the amount of data its millions of broadband customers are able to use in a month. Data is now restricted to as little as 150GB a month. -- Cult of Mac.

Meet Your New iPad-Controlled Home

A Colorado builder is incorporating iPads into new homes. Apple's iPad is used regulate all the electronic systems in the house -- from lights, motorized blinds, entertainment systems (music, TV etc.) to baby monitors and closed-circuit cameras. The docks are built in but the iPads can be removed. -- Cult of Mac.

Wi-Fi base stations: How to set up and configure AirPort Express for AirPlay and iTunes

This article explains how to stream music from iTunes on your Mac or PC, or from your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch with iOS 4.3 or later. to your stereo or speakers using AirPort Express as a standalone Wi-Fi base station or as one of several Wi-Fi base stations. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Wi-Fi base stations: All about Wi-Fi Base Station Status Lights (LED)

The Status Lights on Wi-Fi base stations provide status information about the current state of the Wi-Fi base station through a series of colors and/or flashing patterns. The Status light is also referred to as an LED. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Quick tip: Use your Mac for Internet sharing on the road

While on a trip in Washington, D.C., I came across a situation where I needed Internet for several devices, but the hotel where I was staying charged a substantial fee for Internet for each device. To help alleviate the financial situation, I enabled Internet Sharing on my MacBook Pro, effectively creating a Wi-Fi network for the rest of my devices. -- MacFixIt.

Apple Topping Microsoft's Profits is Triumph of Something Bigger than Hardware Over Software

In the past year, Apple had already surpassed Microsoft on benchmarks such as market cap and quarterly revenue, but topping them profit-wise is the most significant yet. With all of the pent-up demand for the iPad 2 due to Japanese disaster-related delays, Apple's near-term profits will only increase. -- Forbes.

IE9 can't stop Microsoft's browser slump

Safari posts record one-month share gain, Chrome grows and Firefox falls. -- Computerworld.

How To Remove the MacDefender scareware

The best lies always begin with a kernel of truth. Whereas there is a small Mac developer that operates under the MacDefender name, there's a decidedly less savory operator who's distributing scareware using that name and some Mac users have been victimized. If you're among them, here's how to get rid of this malware wolf in antivirus clothing. -- FairerPlatform.

Microsoft Office 2008 12.2.9 /2004 11.6.3

Refusing to leave those who haven't upgraded behind, Microsoft has released a couple of updates for older versions of the Office suite -- the 2008 edition has been bumped to version 12.2.9, while its 2004 counterpart is now at version 11.6.3. The Office 2008 update requires Mac OS X 10.4.9 Tiger or later and includes a number of security, stability, and performance improvements, additional support for Microsoft's SkyDrive cloud-based file sharing system, improved compatibility with the SharePoint enterprise collaboration system, and individual fixes for both Entourage and PowerPoint. The Office 2004 update, which needs 10.2.8 Jaguar or later, contains only unspecified security fixes. (Free updates; 333.1 MB for 2008, 23.4 MB for 2004)

Apple buys iCloud.com domain for $4.5mn

What will be the name of Apple's cloud-based music service? No one knows. However, a tipster of mine says that it might be iCloud. Why? Because the Cupertino-based computing giant is rumored to be a likely buyer of the domain iCloud.com. -- Gigaom.

Apple now the world's second most valuable company

Way back in 1997, Apple was on the brink of extinction. IBM's PC was the unquestioned leader in the business world, and the Apple Mac was used little outside of graphic programs. That's all changed this year in a very big way, as Apple is now the second most valuable company in the entire world - second only to oil giant Exxon. -- Catholic Online.

Adobe Keynote - Photoshop World 2011

See the Adobe Keynote Address from Photoshop World 2011 in Orlando Florida. Photoshop Product Manager sneaks some up and coming Photoshop technologies as well as some Photoshop Technology for iPad.

Apple Acquires Paging Patent to Assist Enterprise & Medical Complexes

Patently Apple has recently discovered a document that confirms that Apple has in fact acquired a new paging reception related patent. The new technology could allow Apple to add premium upsell services for iOS devices in the future that will enable them to further challenge the likes of RIM who currently offers such services. Apple's newly acquired patent will allow Apple to push further into both the enterprise and medical complex spaces which will provide devices like the iPhone and iPad with yet greater value.

Broken Or Lost iPhone? Here's How To Transfer All Your Stuff To A New One

As long as you've recently backed up your iPhone using iTunes, you should be all set to make your new iPhone look exactly like the old one. -- Business Insider.

10 Biggest High-Tech Cover-Ups: Shut Up and Act Like Nothing's Wrong

The list of tech companies that made business mistakes and didn't address them immediately includes Amazon, Apple, Dell, HP, Intel, and Sony, among others. -- PCWorld.

How Apple Can Make iCloud Business-Friendly

Apple's acquisition of the iCloud.com domain name may be for more than just its long-rumored cloud-based iTunes storage--and the discovery of the "Castle" codename in the latest beta release of Apple Mac OS X 10.7 "Lion"--point to an upgrade of its MobileMe cloud suite. -- PCWorld.

Apple can share my location data -- on my terms

That the iPhone (or any other modern telephony device) knows its location and stores that information in a file should come as a surprise to no one. That the file is then backed up should also come as no surprise. Heck, I'll even say that sending the file up to the big cloud in the sky (if indeed that is the case with iOS, Android or any other smartphone) and using it for marketing purposes should not be a shocker.

So, why are people making such a big fuss about all of this? The core of the controversy is informed consent, which is a by-product of a basic reverence for the customer--something sadly lacking far too often these days. -- Computerworld.

Verizon To Warn iPhone Buyers: We're Watching You!

After consumer uproar over the fact that Apple's iPhones can record and store users' locations, Verizon Wireless says it's going to warn potential customers of such acts, via a handy little sticker. Neat. -- Consumerist.

Donald Trump questions Steve Jobs' birth certificate

Faced with diminishing news coverage following the release of Obama's birth certificate, Donald Trump has shifted his sites to a new target: Apple CEO Steve Jobs. -- Scoopertino.

Mac 911: Clearing up iPhone sync confusion

Who's to blame for your iPhone's notes appearing on Yahoo's Website? Start by looking in the mirror. -- Macworld.

Researchers use disk fragmentation to hide data

Researchers from two universities have developed an algorithm that uses disk fragmentation to hide data on a clustered file system. -- Macworld.

Camera Whimsy on iPhones

A cellphone is obviously not the best camera, but by choosing the right apps -- out of about 6,500 -- your photos can be improved. -- New York Times.

How To Save Your iPhone's Location Data Before Apple Destroys It

Apple is said to be quick at work to release a new version of iOS, its mobile operating system, to fix the "bugs" that began in iOS 4.0, which track your device's location and store it in a file on your device and on your synced computer.

If you're anything like me, however, the idea of a file with all of your location sounds really cool and you might not want to lose that information. If so, here's a bit more about Apple's proposed fix and what you can do to save that information before it disappears. -- New York Times.

Thunderbolt Makes New iMacs an Electrifying Possibility

Rumor has it that we'll see refreshed Apple iMacs as soon as Tuesday, May 3, including new Intel Sandy Bridge processors and the Thunderbolt ports that made their debut on the latest MacBook Pro revisions. Even if the iMac isn't something you're terribly interested in, this is a release all Apple-watchers should be excited about. -- New York Times.

Gaming On the iPad 2 and What It Means For Apple

The Digital Foundry blog took a detailed look at gaming on Apple's recently released iPad 2. While most reviews of the device focus on the tablet's size, accessories and software features, this one puts the new A5 processor through its paces, finding "anything from a 4x to 7x leap over what was seen in the original version of the tablet." The authors suggest that it has boosted mobile gaming to a point where Apple could be preparing for a much bigger entrance into the gaming market.

Crimeware Kit Emerges for Mac OS X

Crimeware kits have become a ubiquitous part of the malware scene in the last few years, but they have mainly been confined to the Windows platform. Now, reports are surfacing that the first such kit targeting Apple's Mac OS X operating system has appeared. -- threatpost.

Forget Custom iPad Magazines: Onswipe Turns Any Site Into One

Onswipe does something web developers should have been racing to accomplish ever since the iPad was first unveiled: it makes a website -- any website -- into a tablet-friendly experience. (It's already available to everyone who publishes their blog on Wordpress.com.) It uses HTML5 to make a site feel like an app, even though it's running in the browser. -- MIT Technology Review.

How the iPhone knows where you are

Over at Macworld, TidBITS editor Glenn Fleishman explains Apple's curious statement that GPS positioning would take minutes without its secret sauce of Wi-Fi network and cell-tower location data. Apple (and other mobile device makers) supplement GPS with several clever techniques to get a faster fix.

Apple Announces New iMac With Next Generation Quad-Core Processors, Graphics & Thunderbolt I/O Technology

Apple Announces New iMac

Apple today updated its signature all-in-one iMac with next generation quad-core processors, powerful new graphics, groundbreaking high-speed Thunderbolt I/O technology and a new FaceTime HD camera. Starting at $1,199, the new iMac is up to 70 percent faster and new graphics deliver up to three times the performance of the previous generation. -- Apple PR.

May 02 Monday's News


Chaos Monkey: How Netflix Uses Random Failure to Ensure Success

In a post last week about lessons learned using Amazon Web Services, Netflix's John Ciancutti revealed that the company built something called "Chaos Monkey" to ensure that individual components work independently. Chaos Monkey randomly kills instances and services within Netflix's AWS infrastructure to help developers to make sure each individual component returns something even when system dependencies aren't responding.

Changes to UTK Email for Mac Users

On May 11, 2011, OIT will be making changes that may affect your Entourage or Outlook 2011 email clients. We are updating the server that historically has provided the UT Directory search within the Entourage/Outlook 2011 client. If you have configured your email client to use utkdc2.utk.tennessee.edu as your Directory Service/LDAP server, you will need to update your settings in order to continue to use this feature.

To update your settings in Outlook 2011:

  1. Select Tools->Accounts from the Outlook 2011 file menu
  2. Double-click your UT Exchange account
  3. Click the Advanced button.
  4. Change the Directory Service server to tmail.utk.edu
  5. Click OK.

To update your settings in Entourage:

  1. Select Tools->Account Settings from the Entourage file menu.
  2. Double-click your Exchange account.
  3. Click the Advanced tab
  4. Change the LDAP server field to tmail.utk.edu
  5. Click OK

If you have any questions about this change or would like assistance updating your settings, please contact the OIT HelpDesk at (865) 974-9900.

Planning for PoE

In the latest edition of EDTECH OIT's Philippe Hanset writes about how IT managers deploying Power over Ethernet for wireless networks must decide on midspans vs. endspans, develop a power budget and check their cabling.

iMac Hard Drive Firmware Update 1.0

iMac Hard Drive Firmware Update 1.0 fixes a hard drive issue that may prevent some iMac (21.5-inch and 27-inch, Mid 2010) systems from booting properly.

iPhoto 9.1.2

iPhoto 9.1.2 adds new card themes to iPhoto '11. It also improves overall stability and addresses a number of other minor issues.

Snow Leopard Font Update

The Snow Leopard Font Update addresses issues displaying and printing certain OpenType fonts and is recommended for all Mac OS X v10.6.7 users.

Preliminary white iPhone 4 teardowns reveal modified lens, proximity sensor

Early teardown images of Apple's white iPhone 4 appear to show a more recessed rear-facing camera lens and a slightly modified proximity sensor. -- AppleInsider.

Hints of new 'Castle' codenamed iCloud service found in Mac OS X 10.7 Lion

Strong evidence of Apple's upcoming iCloud service has been found in the form of a feature hidden within in a developer build of Mac OS X 10.7 Lion that allows a MobileMe account to be migrated to a codenamed "Castle" service. -- AppleInsider.

VMware vSphere 5 to add cloud virtualization support for Mac OS X Server

The upcoming release of VMware's vSphere 5 virtualization platform is reported to include guest OS support for Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard, indicating new options for enterprise use of Apple's server platform without the now discontinued Xserve. -- AppleInsider.

Apple preparing to introduce Sandy Bridge iMacs early this week - sources

Apple this week will deliver a much-needed refresh to its iMac line of all-in-one desktops, adopting Intel's newest family of Core processors and the latest in personal computing I/O technology, AppleInsider has learned.

'Reading List' feature discovered in Mac OS X 10.7 Lion Safari

A hidden "Reading List" feature has been uncovered in Mac OS X 10.7 Lion that would allow users to store links to read later. -- AppleInsider.

Inside Mac OS X 10.7 Lion: Developer Preview 3 dials down animated tabs

The third developer preview release of Mac OS X Lion reverts an experimental change in how tabbed panes are drawn and animated, dropping a iOS-like slider animation to present the active tab as simply a depressed button. -- AppleInsider.

Sources: Apple utilizing 'iCloud' internally, service to be more than music

Apple has begun adopting the "iCloud" name within several products currently under development, suggesting the appropriately labeled moniker is indeed the frontrunner for the company's soon-to-debut Internet cloud service, which will span beyond streaming music, AppleInsider has learned.

Apple Q&A on Location Data

Apple would like to respond to the questions we have recently received about the gathering and use of location information by our devices. -- Apple PR.

How apps stay on top in Apple's store

How do some applications stay on top of the App Store charts for so long? We talk to a handful of successful developers to find out their tricks for keeping people interested. -- c|net.

Formatting External Hard Drives In OS X

When you buy an external Hard Drive for use with Time Machine, Apple's backup software, you will most likely need to format it before you can use it, since chances are that it is formatted for a Windows based computer. You could always spend the extra money to get a Mac formatted Hard Drive, but what's the sense in that? You can format your own external Hard Drive right from Mac OS X. This video will show you how. -- Cult of Mac.

Apple Applied For a Patent on Location Tracking In 2009

Apple applied for a broad patent on location tracking services back in September 2009 -- the kind of location tracking that is now causing a storm of controversy. The patent application, entitled "Location Histories for Location Aware Devices," throws some light on the iPhone tracking issue, which is soon to be the subject of a Senate hearing. -- Cult of Mac.

Terra Is A Free Alternative iPad Browser That Does A Lot Of Things Right

Although I'm a loyal Chrome man on the desktop, I tend not to care much for competing browsers on iOS... not because they don't often do functionality better than Mobile Safari, because let's face it, they often do. However, Mobile Safari's privilege of being the default browser on iOS means there's a lot of functionality you just can't really do with an alternative browser.

It's a pity, because if not for that, Terra for iPad would get a sensational recommendation: not only does it have an attractively minimal interface that supports tabbed browsing (as well as nifty full-screen functionality that quickly whisks the tabs out of the way when you want to be immersed), but also a very intuitive library of multitouch gestures. Best of all, it's free. Give it a shot. -- Cult of Mac.

The Rise Of Smartphone Snooping & How To Check For It

Snooping on computers has been a problem for decades. The so-called Trojan Horse, malware that gives a hacker access to a PC without the owner's permission, has been around since the 80's. Keyloggers are another area of concern, and have been given some attention in the popular media from time to time. But whatever you call it, snooping on a PC is an accepted risk, and one users often look out for. -- MakeUseOf.

iPhone app tells you if you drive like a jerk

Is your idea of driving hell someone sitting in the passenger seat telling you how to drive? Well, here's something even more fun: an iPhone app that grades your driving and tells you if you if you're a danger to society. State Farm, the fine upstanding insurance company, has launched a Driver Feedback app that acts as your driving schoolteacher. -- iPhone Atlas.

"You need to restart your computer" (kernel panic) message appears (Mac OS X v10.5, 10.6)

In rare situations, your Mac may stop responding and display a message stating "You need to restart your computer." This is called a kernel panic. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

iOS: Understanding the SIM PIN

You can lock your SIM card so that it can't be used without a Personal Identification Number (PIN). You must enter the PIN each time you turn iPhone or iPad Wi-Fi + 3G off and turn it back on again. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Rolling with Apple's iPhone Location Logging

Every week Mac OS Ken's Ken Ray offers his unique insight into everything Apple, and now he's sharing his thoughts at The Mac Observer. This week Ken dives into Apple's headaches with iPhone location logging, government interest in iPhone privacy, and what the company might have in store for future online services.

Make a dual-partitioned HFS+/FAT32 drive play nice with Windows

This may be evident to some people, but I was a little surprised that my first attempt at it failed. If you ever want to divide a drive into two partitions, one formatted as Mac OS Extended (HFS+) and the other as FAT32, and to be able to access the FAT32 partition from Mac OS X and Windows, just make sure you set the FAT32 partition as the first one on the drive when you partition it with Disk Utility. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Another way to remove PDF passwords

My insurance company requires me to fill in claim forms in a .pdf form, but won't let me save it once it's filled in (it is password protected). After using virtual printers, utilities, etc. I have found an easier way to bypass the password and save the .pdf (and thus the drudgery of filling in the same info every time I make a claim). Just mail it!

When Preview doesn't allow you to save a file, nor 'Save as PDF' (nor open in Preview) from the print dialog, you can still use 'Mail Selected PDF Document' from the File menu.

Mail will then open a new message with the unprotected document as an attachment. The unprotected document is buried deep inside the private/var folder but can simply be opened in Preview by clicking on it in the mail message and then saved (unprotected) wherever you like -- Mac OS X Hints.

Recovering from a catastrophic drive failure

I can't say it enough. Back up your hard drive. I'm going to talk here about what I recommend as the best way to protect yourself from a catastrophic hard drive failure. Keep in mind that what follows is just one of many ways to protect your Mac.

This will cost you. You need to purchase an external hard drive to use with Time Machine. When your internal hard drive fails, you will then need another external hard drive to restore to from Time Machine. You will be using that new external hard drive to work from until you're ready to repair your Mac. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Options for backing up a Mac that will not start up

Many times when systems have troubles that may take an extensive amount of troubleshooting to sort out, the easiest solution is to perform a system reinstallation. Before doing this, though, it is always advised to have a backup of your system (or your data at the very least); however, in instances where you cannot boot your system, this may seem impossible to do. Despite this, if you have a system that cannot boot but you need to back up, there are some options available to back up the drive before wiping it clean. -- MacFixIt.

What to expect in Final Cut Pro X

There is a lot of talk about what the new Final Cut will be like.

The simple answer is -- we do not KNOW anything other than what was shown at the "preview" at NAB.

(In fact there is nothing to say all the features or way they were shown will be exactly the same -- though it would be VERY strange if they were changed -- I am not a sceptic but even I would wonder why -- and worry).

The things we can gleam from the NAB preview will help us get to understand the new application quicker and perhaps more deeply.

Here are my thoughts. -- Learn Final Cut Pro.

How and Why You Should Encrypt Your iOS Backups

If you're security conscious, or you just want your personal data to be safer, you can encrypt the backups iTunes creates of your iOS devices. You may have heard about this for the first time in the wake of the location info storage debacle Apple faced this past week. When your backups are encrypted, to access them, a password will need to be entered, hopefully keeping your info secure. -- GigaOM.

Digital Privacy: Who else is tracking you?

It's not just iPhones and Android phones that are keeping track of their users. -- International Business Times.

Video: Exit through the Genius Bar

Once you get past the elaborate poop joke, South Park's Apple send-up is spot on. -- Fortune.

Angry Birds Peace Treaty

A historic moment for birds and pigs everywhere. Taken from the Israeli comedy show 'Eretz Nehederet' (A Wonderful Country.)

Angry Birds: Slingshot@Peace.org

Let's put and end to the violence. -- Slingshot@Peace.org.

Five common HDTV questions answered

Many issues facing prospective or current HDTV owners are quite easy to address -- you just have to do your homework before you break out your credit card. Here are five common HDTV problems, and how you can solve them in a matter of minutes. -- Macworld.

16 Tips to Take Your iPhone to the Next Level

The iPhone has been around for nearly four years. And in that time, millions of people have bought and used iPhones, swiping and tapping their way through life. Most of those people believe they know how the iPhone works.

But dig a little deeper into the iPhone's latest operating system, iOS 4.3 -- available for the iPhone 3GS and the AT&T iPhone 4 -- and there's another layer to master. (Sorry, Android users, but that OS has so many versions and skins that a quick guide would be neither very quick nor much of a guide.) Beyond the realm of those basic iPhone controls is an advanced level of shortcuts and tweaks, some of which even hard-core users may not know exist. -- New York Times.

The iPhone tracking story, one week later

Apple announces fixes and sheds more light on location data. Plus, a look at some of the reporting and potential applications that have popped up. -- O'Reilly Network.