Bandwagon Offers Online iTunes Library Backups

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Date: Friday, February 23rd, 2007, 08:06
Category: News

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On Thursday, Xackup announced the launch of Bandwagon, an online iTunes library backup server and backup client for US$69 a year.
Within this price frame, users can use a queue manager program to select which items are backed up to the server while a clever implementation of Spotlight searches through what’s been uploaded and sends along missing items to complete the picture.
Bandwagon is currently priced at US$69 for a year’s subscription with unlimited storage, albeit users can pay US$1 for a 30 day trial (the unlimited storage still applies). The price increases to US$100 per year at the beginning of March.
If you’ve had any experiences with Xackup, good or bad, let us know.

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iPods to Become Flight Data Recorders

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Date: Thursday, February 22nd, 2007, 09:08
Category: News

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Flight is reporting that U.S. light aircraft manufacturer LoPresti Speed Merchants plants to include the iPod into its “Fury” model’s avionics system.
The iPod, which will be outfitted with specialized softwre, will act as a hard disk (or “black box”) and be able to record more than 500 hours of flight time data. Collected data samples can assist with training, system analysis, crash investigation and other purposes. Should the iPod work in the Fury, it could be deployed as a flight data recorder in other models of light aircraft.
In addition to acting as a replacement black box, complete with iPod dock connector, the iPod can function as an audio recorder and capture two-way cockpit and cockpit tower conversations for later analysis.
“This is the perfect marriage of a consumer product to the aviation market” commented R.J. Siegel, vice president of operations for LoPresti. “The iPod has an ideal product spec for aviation. It’s light and small, with very low power requirements and a simple interface. There are thousands of developers passionate about writing applications for the iPod. With such a large body of programmers we literally have no idea what the next great aviation application may be.”

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Democracy Player Receives Important Bug Fix in New 0.9.5.1 Version

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Date: Thursday, February 22nd, 2007, 08:15
Category: Software

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Democracy Player, the popular open source media player program in the vein of VLC, has been updated to version 0.9.5.1.
The new version, an 8.9 megabyte download, repairs bugs between the program’s python code and Mac management favorites such as Growl and Camino.
Other repaired bugs included a Linux error that prevented preferences from being saves and a Windows bug in which the player window couldn’t be resized.
In addition to acting as a media player, Democracy also acts as an RSS-enabled television program of sorts, chasing after preferred updated content and putting it aside in an iTunes playlist fashion for the user.
Democracy Player requires Mac OS X 10.3 or later and QuickTime 7 to run. The program is donationware, so if you like it, chip in a few dollars online to the authors.
If you’ve had either positive or negative experiences with the new version, let us know.

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Apple and Cisco Reach Settlement Regarding iPhone Trademark

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Date: Thursday, February 22nd, 2007, 08:00
Category: News

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On Wednesday, Apple Inc. and Cisco Systems announced that they have reached a settlement over the much-contended “iPhone” trademark.
While details of the settlement are sparse, the announcement cited that both companies acknowledge that trademark rights to the name have been granted and each side will dismiss legal actions regarding the trademarks.
Cisco had filed suit against Apple in January for infringing on its iPhone name trademark, a property Cisco claimed it purchased the rights to via its 2000 acquisition of Infogear. In late 2006, the company began selling a dual-mode VoIP-based cordless handset based on the iPhone name.
Additionally, “Cisco and Apple will explore opportunities for interoperability in the areas of security, and consumer and enterprise communications.”
All other details of the agreement remain confidential and no major feature changes or deviations from Apple’s anticipated June release date have been announced regarding the iPhone.

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Verizon and Vonage to Face Off in Patent Infringement Suit

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Date: Wednesday, February 21st, 2007, 12:41
Category: News

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Voice over Internet Protocol carrier Vonage and long-standing telephone carrier Verizon will lock legal horns in court this June. The suit, filed by Verizon under the claim that Vonage had violated several of its patents, specifically the technology Vonage uses to connect calls from Internet Protocol-based phones to traditionally networked phones.
Vonage has denied any form of patent violation and cites that most of its technologies are standards-based as well as widely available throughout its industry. In a sample cited over on ZDNet’s coverage, Vonage has stated that it used voice gateways available from Cisco to route voice traffic over the Internet and connect its phone calls to regular phone networks.
Click the jump for the full story…

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VLC HDTV Streaming Guide Published

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Date: Wednesday, February 21st, 2007, 09:25
Category: How-To

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The guys over at The Unofficial Apple Weblog have pointed out a cool tutorial by Erica Sadun over on MacDevCenter.com.
The tutorial is a full guide demonstrating how two Macs, one equipped with an EyeTV-compatible tuner and driver software and both equipped with the open source VLC media player, can set up an active video server to record HDTV content from one Mac and stream it to other Macs and PCs throughout the house.
Once complete, users can configure VLC to act as a web-based remote control, flipping channels on other computers throughout the home or network while the server pushes the content through.
The guide is a few pages, complete with full tutorials and visual guides. Older Macs can be used as a server, Saldun referencing as to how even a 733 MHz Power Mac G4 was capable of performing the task.
Read it over and see what you think. And if you’ve built or been involved with any similar projects, let us know.

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PowerBookResQ Now iResQ

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Date: Wednesday, February 21st, 2007, 08:17
Category: News

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According to an article on MacMinute, long-standing Mac community staple PowerBookResQ, which made its mark by offering US$99 service on damaged Macintosh laptops with three way overnight shipping included, has changed its name and is now known as iResQ.
The change reflects the company’s pursuit of a wider market, a revamped web site now offering additional services for iPod, the upcoming iPhone as well as ink and toner sales. The company will continue to operate with included three-way overnight shipping included but will add two additional service levels, one for US$49 and another for US$29.

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Kandalu X Cube Utility Allows iPod Backup, CD Cover Creation

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Date: Wednesday, February 21st, 2007, 08:57
Category: Software

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UK-software firm Kandalu has released the first version of its Kandalu X Cube software utility.
The program allows users to copy music on their iPod over to their computer and vice versa via iTunes. Users can also create a CD cover from selected iTnes songs in Microsoft Word featuring the artist, track and album information found in their iTunes music library.
Kandalu X Cube is available for a US$28 shareware registration fee and is a 4 megabyte download courtesy of MacUpdate.
The program is a universal binary and runs natively on both PowerPC and Intel-based hardware.
Give it a try and if you have an opinion about what you see, let us know.

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Quantum Research Threatens Suit Over Included iPhone Technologies

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Date: Tuesday, February 20th, 2007, 08:35
Category: News

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Apple’s iPhone may have yet another legal impediment to its birth and release to the market as UK-based sensor manufacturer Quantum Research has threatened to sue Apple over a rear-surface touch screen technology included within the iPhone.
“The description of the iPhone suggests it uses a rear-surface touch screen, and has proximity sensing which can tell if it is held to the ear. That’s a Quantum Research capability,” said Duncan Byran, licensing director for the company in a phone interview with Electronics Weekly.
Quantum Research is already involved with another lawsuit against Apple since December of 2005 regarding technologies found within the iPod’s click wheel device – specifically capacitive sensing technology it claims are found within its patents.

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Intel Developing Light Sensors to Integrate Into Notebook Power Systems

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Date: Tuesday, February 20th, 2007, 08:43
Category: News

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An article over on Engadget (by way of NewScientistTech) examines a patent Intel has submitted to the United States Patent and Trademark Office describing a new sensor system they’re developing to help keep laptops cool.
In the patent, Intel describes how their system will use “light to sense when a computer casing is getting too hot, and automatically throttles back the power” to help keep the system cooler. Since these hot spots occur in various locations along a laptop’s casing, a light sensor system could detect changes on an internal thermochromatic coating and send a signal back to cool the laptop down appropriately.
The full patent application can be found here and should this work, the days of the leg-toasting PowerBook G4s and other too-warm laptops may be a thing of the past.

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