Firefox Released

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Date: Friday, February 23rd, 2007, 16:51
Category: News

firefox.jpg has released version of its Firefox web browser for the Mac OS X, Windows and Linux operating systems.
The new version, a 17.6 megabyte download, provides fixes for a variety of security issues, improves Windows Vista support, repairs permissions for the German locale on the Windows operating systems as well as file tags and supplements localized language support.
Firefox requires Mac OS X 10.2 or later to run and is available as freeware.
If you have any feedback about the new version, positive or negative, let us know.


PowerBook/iBook Lower RAM Slot Failure Explored

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Date: Friday, February 23rd, 2007, 15:48
Category: News

pbg4ramslot.jpg has written a roundup piece regarding the lower RAM slot failure present on some PowerBook G4 and iBook laptops.
The article suggests a battery of tests and workarounds that can be performed, the first being to re-seat and swapping RAM modules, later switching the RAM modules between slots.
Hardware problems are also mentioned, the roundup mentioning logic board failure symptons such as the laptop not booting and generally emitting three short beeps in lieu of a startup chime and the sleep LED flashing periodically. Apple has admitted to hardware flaws covered by its “Memory Slot Repair Extension Program”, which only covers 15″ 1.67 GHz PowerBook G4 laptops with serial numbers in the range of W8503xxxxxx through W8518xxxxxx.
For the full article as well as its relating article and additional fixes to try, click here.
If you’ve had similar problems or discovered fixes and workarounds, let us know.


BlueTraks BT-211 Offers Slew of Devices in Single Car System

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Date: Friday, February 23rd, 2007, 08:33
Category: News

In the midst of juggling every accessory possible for your car to handle your ever-increasing collection of electronic devices, a firm called BlueTraks may have a catch-all solution en route.
The recently released BT-211 features both a hands-free BlueTooth panel, an iPod control system, 4.2″ touch screen display and is hard-wired to the vehicle’s bus and stereo systems. Touch the display and the system will kick into its BlueTooth mode, monitoring for the drive to announce the name and number of the person they’d like to call.
In the case of an incoming call, the unit will mute the car’s audio system and announce the caller’s name while simultaneously displaying caller ID information.
Albeit no word as to pricing has been announced yet and BlueTraks appears to be looking for dealers, the company plans to roll out similar models in the second half of this year complete with GPS navigation and satellite radio features.


PGP Desktop Home 9.6 Beta Released

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Date: Friday, February 23rd, 2007, 08:37
Category: News

PGP Corporation has released version 9.6 of its PGP Desktop Home encryption suite. The software, which retails for US$99, helps provide greater systemwide privacy via encryption, decryption, digital signatures, verification and recipient key lookups. These technologies plug into your Mac’s e-mail and instant messaging programs as well as selected files, which can be secured and encrypted on the fly.
The new beta, a 23.3 megabyte download, now supports Mac OS X PGP key reconstruction and provides better support for the recently released Windows Vista operating system as well as numerous bug fixes.
PGP Desktop is available for a 30 day free trial period.


Bandwagon Offers Online iTunes Library Backups

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

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.


iPods to Become Flight Data Recorders

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

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.”


Democracy Player Receives Important Bug Fix in New Version

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

Democracy Player, the popular open source media player program in the vein of VLC, has been updated to version
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.


Apple and Cisco Reach Settlement Regarding iPhone Trademark

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

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.


Verizon and Vonage to Face Off in Patent Infringement Suit

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

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…


VLC HDTV Streaming Guide Published

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

The guys over at The Unofficial Apple Weblog have pointed out a cool tutorial by Erica Sadun over on
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.