QuarkXPress 9.3.1.2 update released

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Date: Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012, 07:03
Category: News, Software

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On Thursday, software developer Quark released version 9.3.1.2 of its QuarkXPress design application. The 364 megabyte update, which can be downloaded here, adds the following change:

– This free update for App Studio users includes new versions of App Studio Factory and Issue Previewer for iOS Simulator. This release is not compatible with QPS 9.2.

QuarkXPress 9.3.1.2 requires an Intel-based Mac running Mac OS X 10.5.8 later to install and retails for US$799.00 for the full version.

If you’ve tried the new version and have any feedback to offer, please let us know in the comments.

Adobe releases Lightroom 4.2 update

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Date: Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012, 07:32
Category: News, Software

It’s hard to argue with a useful update.

On Wednesday, Adobe released 4.2 of its Lightroom image editing program. The new version, a 426 megabyte download, offers the following fixes and changes:

– Album Support within the Revel Publish Service.

– Additional camera support for 20 new cameras including the Canon EOS 650D / Rebel T4i, Fujifilm X-E1, and Sony DSC-RX100.

– Corrections for issues introduced in previous versions of Lightroom.

Adobe Lightroom 4.2 retails for US$149.00 and requires an Intel-based Mac running Mac OS X 10.6.8 or later to install and run.

If you’ve tried the new version and have any feedback to offer, please let us know in the comments.

Rare Steve Jobs speech from 1983 unearthed, complete with predictive technology comments and foreshadowing of future Apple technologies

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Date: Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012, 07:51
Category: News

Ok, now this is REALLY interesting.

Per AppleInsider and the LifeLibertyTech.com blog, the full-length version of a “lost” Steve Jobs speech given at the Design Conference in Aspen was unearthed and posted to the web on Tuesday, illustrating some of the prescient insights the late Jobs offered as to how computers would one day be an overwhelming presence in our lives.

Perhaps the highlight of the newly-published recording is a question and answer session in which Jobs describes mobile computing, pointing out that he would like to one day build a computer in a slate-like form-factor, much like the iPad.

Points of interest from the audio as noted by LifeLibertyTech:
– He states that in a few years people will be spending more time interacting with personal computers than with cars. It seems so obvious now, but hardly a given back then.

– He equates society’s level of technology familiarity to being on a “first date” with personal computers. He recognized that technology would continue to evolve in the near future as would people’s comfort level with it. In hindsight, once it became dominant the PC industry stood relatively still while Jobs was busy planning “the next big thing”.

– He confidently talks about the personal computer being a new medium of communication. Again, this is before networking was commonplace or there was any inkling of the Internet going mainstream. Yet he specifically talks about early e-mail systems and how it is re-shaping communication. He matter-of-factly states that when we have portable computers with radio links, people could be walking around anywhere and pick up their e-mail. Again, this is 1983, at least 20 years before the era of mobile computing.

– He discusses early networking and the mess of different protocols that existed at the time. He predicts that we were about 5 years away from “solving” networking in the office and 10-15 years from solving networking in the home.

– He says Apple’s strategy is to “put an incredibly great computer in a book that you can carry around with you that you can learn how to use in 20 minutes”. Does that sound like anything we are familiar with today? And they wanted to do it with a “radio link” so that people wouldn’t need to hook it up to anything to communicate with “larger databases” and other computers.

– Right at the end of the Q&A session, a question is asked about voice recognition, which he believed was the better part of a decade away from reality. Given the context of Siri today, it is interesting to hear him talk about the difficultly of recognizing language vs voice because language is contextually driven. He says, “This stuff is hard”.

The full audio file can be downloaded from here.

As always, let us know what’s on your mind in the comments and thanks for reading!

Opera 12.10.1615 public beta goes live, now available for download

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Date: Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012, 07:17
Category: News, Software

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Late Tuesday, Opera Software released a public beta of version 12.10.1615 of its web browser. The new version, a 20.1 megabyte download via MacUpdate, boasts the following fixes and changes:
– Extensions, improved

Several new and improved APIs are included in this version of Opera including:
– API for URL filtering

– Context Menu API

– Screenshots API

– Resource Loader API

– High-resolution Display Support: Improved support for all high-resolution displays, including Apple’s new Retina Displays is included in this beta.

Web Specifications Support:
– Opera 12.10 beta will include changes in the Opera Presto 2.12 engine up to core-integration-point 388.

– SPDY: Support for the SPDY (“Speedy”) network standard is included in Opera 12.10 beta. SPDY was designed to cut down the time it takes for a webpage to load, while reducing some of the security risks posed by HTTP.

– CSS3 Gradients, Transitions, Animations, and Transforms: All members of these specifications are now available without the -o- prefix and have been updated to the latest published versions.

– CSS Site Compatibility: To improve site compatibility and interoperability, Opera 12.10 beta also introduces aliasing for a selection of prefixed CSS properties.

– Fullscreen API: Fullscreen API support has been implemented and fully supports Draft 7 of the Fullscreen API specification.

– Page Visibility API: Basic support for the Page Visibility API specification has been added, including support for visible and hidden.

– WebSockets: Support for WebSockets has been updated in Opera 12.10 beta and is now enabled by default.

– ICC Profiles: International Color Consortium profile support has been added, ensuring images look as the author intended.

Improvements:
– Display and Scripting.

– Add onpaste to document.

– Add an href attribute to the widget element in config.xml.

Fixes and Changes:
– The OS X version of Opera has been reverted to in-process plugins while stability issues stemming from the out-of-process plugin system are investigated and resolved.

Opera 12.10.1615 is available for free and requires an Intel-based Mac running Mac OS X 10.5 or later to install and run.

AppleCare rep cites iPhone 5 camera “purple fringing” as normal behavior, in spite of user complaints

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Date: Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012, 07:25
Category: Hardware, iPhone, News

This is a tad odd, but if you’re a fan of Prince, you might just love it.

Per AppleInsider, in a reply to a customer inquiry regarding the “purple flare” some iPhone 5 users have seen when taking pictures with bright light sources in frame, an AppleCare representative says the phenomenon is considered “normal behavior” for the new handset’s camera.

The response from Apple representative Debby claims Apple’s engineering team recommended to angle the camera away from bright lights to avoid the purple flare some users have taken to calling a design defect.

The reply went as follows:

AppleCare Support response:
Dear Matt,

Our engineering team just gave me this information and we recommend that you angle the camera away from the bright light source when taking pictures. The purple flare in the image provided is considered normal behavior for iPhone 5’s camera. If you wish to reach me regarding this case number [redacted], please contact me at [redacted]. I currently work Thursday-Monday: 7:00am – 3:30pm Mountain Time. If you reach my voicemail, please leave your name, phone number, case number and the best time to reach you. Email is [redacted]@apple.com.

Sincerely,
Debby
AppleCare Support

Assorted publications reported that so-called “purple fringing” is a common issue with modern digital cameras, especially miniaturized units like those found in smartphones.

It was speculated that the “purple haze” was caused by the iPhone 5’s use of a new sapphire lens cover, new component layout or sensor issues, however more likely a cause is normal distortion of light presented in this case as chromatic aberration. In most cases, chromatic distortion skews toward shorter wavelength violet light, which is difficult to correct with larger prime lenses, let alone the minuscule versions used in the iPhone 5.

According to a thread on the Apple’s Support Communities webpage dedicated to the purple fringing issue, one user claims the company has agreed to swap out their handset for a new unit, though it is unclear if replacements will be considered for all affected customers.

If you’ve seen this issue on your end or been in dialogue with Apple regarding it, please let us know about your experience in the comments.

Apple releases iPhoto 9.4.1 update

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Date: Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012, 06:45
Category: News, Software

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You can’t knock the bug fixes.

Late Monday, Apple released its iPhoto 9.4.1 update. The update, a 794 megabyte download, adds the following fixes and changes:

– Improves the reliability of syncing to iOS devices via iTunes.

– Fixes an issue that could cause iPhoto to quit unexpectedly when using the Export command.

– Addresses an issue that could cause iPhoto to quit unexpectedly when upgrading multiple books, cards, and calendars.

– Resolves an issue with downloading and viewing photos synced from Facebook albums.

– Adds support for Shared Photo Streams on OS X Mountain Lion.

– Comments can now be added to photos after publishing them to Facebook.

– New card and calendar themes have been added.

– A new File menu command can be used to open the current photo library in Aperture (if installed).

– Includes performance and stability improvements.

iPhoto 9.4.1 retails for US$49 as part of iLife ’11 and requires an Intel-based Mac running Mac OS X 10.7.5 or later to install and run.

If you’ve tried the update and noticed any changes, please let us know.

Apple releases Aperture 3.4.1 update

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Date: Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012, 06:29
Category: News, Software

Late last week, Apple released version 3.4.1 of Aperture, its pro-grade image editing application. The new version, which is available as a direct download or via Mac OS X’s Software update feature, is a 550 megabyte download and offers the following fixes and changes:

– Addresses an installer issue that could cause the application to quit unexpectedly on launch.

– Improves the reliability of syncing photos to iOS devices via iTunes.

– Resolves an issue with downloading and viewing photos synced from Facebook albums.

– Addresses other stability issues.

Aperture 3.4.1 requires an Intel-based Mac running Mac OS X 10.7.5 or later to install and run.

If you’ve tried the new version and have any feedback to offer, please let us know in the comments.

App Store highlights third-party mapping applications in latest Apple response to iOS 6 Maps complaints

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Date: Friday, September 28th, 2012, 10:13
Category: News, Software

This couldn’t have been easy to fess up to and post.

Per AppleInsider, Apple has posted a new featured link on the iOS App Store that invites users to “Find maps for your iPhone,” and lists a number of paid and free alternatives to Apple’s own Maps application in iOS 6.

The new link appeared on the App Store on Friday, after Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook himself highlighted competing options in an apology to customers. Since the launch of iOS 6 with Apple’s all-new mapping solution, users have complained that the software is substandard.

“While we’re improving Maps, you can try alternatives by downloading map apps from the App Store like Bing, MapQuest, and Waze, or use Google or Nokia maps by going to their websites and creating an icon on your home screen to their web app,” Cook wrote.

In addition to the public apology, the new “Find maps for your iPhone” is the first featured link on the iOS App Store curated by Apple. It offers a list of 13 alternative mapping applications available for download. They are:
– MotionX GPS Drive

– Waze social GPS traffic & gas

– MapQuest

– GPS by Telenav

– Garmin USA

– Gokivo GPS Navigator

– Navigon USA

– CoPilot Live Premium USA — offline GPS navigation

– CoPilot GPS — Plan & Explore with on-board maps & directions

– Bing

– Magellan RoadMate North America

– AT&T Navigator: GPS navigation subscription fee appears on AT&T bill

Most notably absent from the list is Google Maps, because a dedicated application from the search company is not yet available on the App Store. Google is said to be working on a standalone application, but in the meantime users can still visit the Google Maps website, as Cook suggested, to access the service. The popular Street View functionality is not available, but is expected to launch within the next two weeks.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

A6 processor found to vary speeds for best possible performance

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Date: Friday, September 28th, 2012, 07:22
Category: Hardware, iPhone, News, Processors

They say the A6 processor has some cool tricks up its sleeve.

They A6 processor doesn’t have sleeves, but it does have some interesting performance variations. No sleeves, though.

Per The Unofficial Apple Weblog, one possible reason the iPhone 5 has such great battery life is the clever way the A6 changes its clock speed. While originally thought to be clocked at 1GHz, the chip has been clocked at 1.1GHz as well as 1.3GHz by Current Editorials.

While 9to5Mac saw the chip’s speed drop as low as 550MHz, this seemed to do more with an as-yet-updated Geekbench app testing the chip (which also resulted in the 1GHz assumption). A Geekbench update seems to paint a different picture now. By all accounts it appears the chip can change “speeds,” however, resulting in better battery life and dynamically tuning itself to the demand for CPU.

Nifty stuff…now if Apple could just release a much-improved iOS 6 Maps app, most of its problems would be over and it could sit and relax with a margarita this Friday.

Google begins adding CardDAV support for iOS calendar users

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Date: Friday, September 28th, 2012, 07:07
Category: iOS, News, Software

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Google has added support for the open CardDAV contact syncing protocol used by Apple in OS X and iOS, enabling Google Contacts users to directly sync just like Yahoo and iCloud.

Google’s Gmail product manager Jeff Ellingson noted the new support for CardDAV on the company’s blog today.

The new support requires iOS 5 or higher, and currently requires users to manually set up an “other” CardDAV account, as Apple’s automated setup for Google accounts on both OS X and iOS only configure Gmail & Notes (via IMAP), Calendar & Reminders (via CalDAV), and Messages (via XMPP).

In the future, Apple will likely add support for simply checking a box for Contacts sync to simplify CardDAV account configuration, just as it does for Yahoo and Facebook accounts that already support CardDAV.

Apple pioneered support for the CalDAV and CardDAV open specifications in its efforts to build open Calendar and Contact sharing services in OS X Server as an alternative to Microsoft Exchange Server, which uses proprietary protocols to sync such data between clients and servers.

The company first added CalDAV and CardDAV support to its mobile devices in iOS 4 two years ago.

Apple has aggressively pushed both open standards for calendar and contact sync, enabling users to seamlessly use Macs and iOS devices with not just its own OS X Server and iCloud offerings, but also third party services from AOL, Google, Yahoo and any other systems that support them.

CalDAV and CardDAV are based upon the WebDAV specification for building web servers capable of both reading and writing information, so implementing the protocols is relatively simple for third parties.

If you’ve tried the new Google CalDAV and CardDAV support features in iOS, please let us know how your experience went in the comments.