REVIEW: Fission – Lossless Audio Editing for Compressed Files

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Date: Wednesday, September 20th, 2006, 13:50
Category: Software

rogue-amoeba-fission.pngRogue Amoeba (makers of cool sound tools, such as Audio Hijack / Pro and Airfoil) has released Fission, a unique sound editor that allows for “Lossless” editing of compressed (mp3, AAC) audio files. The compressed formats split up a sound file into a series of small frames (~1/40 of a second each), which are very difficult to manipulate independently. Most applications simply decode an mp3 or AAC file to uncompressed audio for editing, and then re-compress the edited sound for export. The additional re-compression step results in some sound quality degradation.
Fission allows you to perform simple edits (cutting, splitting, and fading) in the compressed domain (without having to uncompress and re-compress), resulting in no additional quality loss (of course, the mp3 or AAC files you started with are lossy formats to begin with), hence the quotes around “lossless”. It is ideally suited for the editing and splitting of large compressed files recorded from radio streams (e.g., using Audio Hijack Pro or a Griffin radio SHARK). Fission also includes a “Smart Split” feature that can automatically segment your files by searching for silence (that typically occur before and after songs or commercials). Very cool!
The interface is extremely easy to use (simple for novices, but familiar to anyone who’s ever used a sound editor). I do have two small feature requests: 1) The ability to add split-markers in real-time during playback would be really helpful, and 2) Allow time to be displayed in units other than just minutes:seconds (e.g., samples). Overall, Fission is a great addition to any Mac/audio/music-lover’s set of sound applications.
UPDATE: I just heard from Rogue Amoeba that my first feature request is already there (choose “Split at Playhead” or Cmd-T). My mistake! So my revised (very minor) feature request is to make this keyboard shortcut a single key, or allow it to be user-assignable.

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Parallels Workstation 2.2 RC Runs Windows Vista

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Date: Wednesday, September 20th, 2006, 09:14
Category: Software

Everyone’s favorite virtualization tool, Parallels Desktop, has released an update that allows users to runs Windows Vista RC1 as a guest OS and eliminates the need to manually limit RAM via the command line.

We also released a new build for Desktop for Mac that eliminates kernel panics and substantially improves the performance of virtual machines running on Mac Pros and 64-bit iMacs. The build eliminates kernel panics and major bugs and adds support for Windows Vista RC1 as a guest OS. The new build is available at the main Desktop download page (http://www.parallels.com/en/download/desktop/update/).

In previous builds, Mac Pro and 64-bit iMac users who have machines with more than 2GB of RAM had to manually limit RAM via the command line in Terminal. In this build, we’ve included a tool that will help you take this action without any command line coding. With a single click you can limit your RAM and make your Mac Pro fully compatible with this build. You can easily revert your memory back at any time to the full configuration with the same tool. Its very important to note that limiting your RAM configuration to run Parallels Desktop will NOT prevent you from running any other OS X application (although they may run slightly slower). It simply helps our hypervisor “play nice” with the Mac Pro.

Download Update RC of Parallels Desktop for Mac

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BBEdit 8.5 Rocks

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Date: Monday, September 11th, 2006, 23:45
Category: Software

It’s no secret that I love the BBEdit. I’ve been using it to write and edit the PowerPage since it’s inception and simply can’t live without it. Today Bare Bones Software released BBEdit version 8.5 with some pretty cool features including Code Folding which collapses sections of text, Clippings which provide quick access to frequently used pieces of text and a greatly improved (and searchable) preferences panel.
All-in-all BBEdit 8.5 includes nearly two hundred new features, refinements and user interface improvements. For an exhaustive list of what’s new, see the current release notes.
Upgrades are US$30 from version 8 and US$40 from version 7. A new license costs US$125.

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CrossOver Mac Beta Available

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Date: Friday, September 8th, 2006, 09:15
Category: Software

We are providing a free time limited beta version of CrossOver Mac to anyone that is willing to test CrossOver.

CrossOver Mac will be the very best way to run your Windows applications on your Intel based Mac. It will let you install and run Windows programs as though they were native, all without having to buy or run a copy of Windows itself.

This beta version will give you a taste of the promise of CrossOver, but should be considered an early test release – we intend to make substantial further improvements before we ship a production version.

CodeWeavers – Beta Center – CrossOver Mac

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CoreDuo Temp 1.0 Released

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Date: Friday, September 8th, 2006, 09:13
Category: Software

CoreDuoTemp 1.0 monitors the temperature of Intel Macs, including the iMac (2006), Mac mini (2006), MacBook Pro and MacBook. The new version includes a menubar application, floating palette and a widget. CoreDuoTemp use SpeedIt, a framework by Increw Team. Well worth the 288k download for Core Duo users.

What kind of temps are you seeing?

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Mac OS X and Faxing

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Date: Friday, September 8th, 2006, 07:00
Category: Software

The following is some feedback I just types into Apple’s Mac OS X Feedback web form:
——————————-
I wanted to take this opportunity to comment of the “Print & Fax” controls built into Mac OS X 10.3 (and later) System Preferences.
It is still necessary to correspond with some people in business via FAX. Some people still prefer to send some documents to our home-office in this way. (Broadband has not yet penetrated universally, anyway, so asking people to scan and email their documents is not always practical, even for those who are technologically literate enough to do so.)
Regarding the “Print & Fax” capability in Mac OS 10.3 and later…
When I want to receive a fax, I have to take a late-model Mac with 10.3 or later installed, have it configured to receive the fax, plug it into a phone line, and wait. Mac OS X doesn’t put any icons in the menu bar to let you know the status of the built-in modem. (Why not?) Mac OS X doesn’t give you a status report on modem activity, such as who the fax is coming from/caller ID, what page number, what bit rate, etc. (Why not?) Added to this, Apple sells external modems for newer Intel Macs as an extra-cost option.
This being the case, why doesn’t Apple simply make a deal with the manufacturers of all of these multi-function machines (print/scan/copy/fax machines from Brother, HP, Lexmark, etc.) so that computers on a network (Airport via USB, or maybe via Printer Sharing) could send faxes though a multi-function machine hooked to a base station via USB, and maybe even receive faxes to a designated machine on the network? If a modern Mac can scan and print via USB, why can’t it fax as well?
Contributed by: Walt Atwood

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Parallels Adds Mac Pro, Leopard and Windows Vista Support

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Date: Thursday, September 7th, 2006, 15:49
Category: Software

Parallels is releasing a new build of Parallels Desktop for Mac that is fully compatible with the new Mac Pro tower, Mac OS X 10.5 ‘Leopard’ and they’ve even added “experimental” support for guest Windows Vista Beta. The Vista feature means that Mac users can now experiment with Windows Vista without having to compromise the stability of your “real” PC. Download the 22.5MB update here. Pretty cool…

Update Release Candidate of Parallels Desktop for Mac

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DJay Software for OS X

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Date: Monday, August 21st, 2006, 15:05
Category: Software

djay.png

djay is the groundbreaking new software for Mac OS X. It takes full advantage of Apple’s latest audio and graphics technologies, and runs natively on both Intel and PowerPC processors.It supports all common file formats, such as mp3, aiff, wav, aac, caf. With djay you can control and mix your whole digital music collection with two realistic virtual, interactive turntables and both record and transmit the audio in real-time over the Bonjour network to other connected djays.

Algoriddim.net >> djay home

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Colin Henein’s SlimBatteryMonitor Updated

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Date: Monday, August 21st, 2006, 08:00
Category: Software

[SlimBatteryMonitor logo] Colin Henein’s SlimBatteryMonitor has been updated to version 1.4.

Takes up to 70% less space than Apple’s gauge. Monitors laptop batteries and many UPS batteries as well. Select different views for when powered, charging or on battery. Monitor can hide itself automatically when desired. New 1.4 release is universal with new shape and options.

SlimBatteryMonitor – Battery and UPS Gauge for Apple’s Mac OS X

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Changes in Boot Camp 1.1 beta

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Date: Wednesday, August 16th, 2006, 00:17
Category: Software

Boot Camp 1.1 beta contains many updates and is intended for all new and previous Boot Camp beta users.

Boot Camp 1.1 beta includes:

  • Support for the latest Intel-based Macintosh computers
  • Easier partitioning using presets for popular sizes
  • Ability to install Windows XP on any internal disk
  • ISight camera support
  • Support for built-in microphones
  • Right-click when pressing the right-hand Apple key on Apple keyboards
  • Improved Apple keyboard support including Delete, PrintScreen, NumLock, and ScrollLock keys

Apple – Boot Camp

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