Adobe Demos CS3 on a MacBook Pro

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Date: Monday, June 19th, 2006, 08:00
Category: Software

Adobe’s InDesign product manager Chad Siegel visited London this month to show a selection of new InDesign features to Macworld UK.

Using a MacBook Pro, Siegel offered a glimpse at a number of time-saving features that focus on designers, but stressed these to be no more than a small selection of some of the features the company is working on.

“We’re investing in workflow,” he explained, promising better integration between all the products to be shipped within Creative Suite 3. He even shows some of the powerful image import and editing features that will be made available within the next iteration of InDesign.

Macworld UK – Adobe demos Creative Suite 3 on Intel

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Parallels Desktop Released

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Date: Thursday, June 15th, 2006, 11:27
Category: Software

parallels-box.gifAfter a two month beta program Parallels has released the final version of Parallels Desktop for Mac. Some highlights:
- The highly successful multi-stage beta program included more than 100,000 users from 75 countries
- The product offers several key productivity features, like fullscreen/dual monitor mode, file sharing, cutting/pasting between OSes (via Parallels Tools, which is included with each copy), and can run any version of Windows (3.1-XP/2003), Linus, FreeBSD, Solaris, OS/2, eComStation, and DOS
- The product now includes Parallels Compressor, a powerful disk management tool that can compress virtual hard drives by 50% or more. This is a very useful tool, esepcially if you’re working on a laptop with a relatively small hard drive. Compressor Server (retail price $179, compatible with Windows 2000, XP and 2003) is the specific version included with Desktop.
- Final retail price will be US$79.99 (a US$150 savings versus buying Parallels Desktop and Compressor Server separately). As a special thank you to the Mac community for all of their great support, we’ll be making the product available for only US$49.99 through July 15th.

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Pimp Your MBP With Vista

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Date: Monday, June 12th, 2006, 23:59
Category: Software

I know that it has been reported ad nauseam all over the Web but I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that you can install Windows Vista beta 2 on the MacBook Pro. (No word yet on if it works on the MacBook.) Hans VB’s blog has the installation instructions and a page of screen shots to go along with it.
Have you spent the two plus hours this endeavour requires? Share your experience in the comments below .

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Letterbox: Widescreen Plugin for Mail.app

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Date: Thursday, June 8th, 2006, 10:08
Category: Software

widescreen-mail.pngMacBook and MBP users will love this tasty little upgrade for Apple’s email client. It gives you a three-pane mail view that’s perfect for widescreen notebookers. It has a small re-size bug with the middle pane and the attachement column (which gets really wide) but it’s still absolutely priceless. Expect Apple to add this to the next version of Mail – if they’ve got any clue whatsoever.

Letterbox is a plugin for Apple’s Mail.app that takes advantage of your widescreen monitor. It rearranges the interface into three vertical columns – so the message pane is to the right of the message list, rather than below. You’ll probably need at least 1280 and perhaps 1440 horizontal pixels for this layout to work well for you.Letterbox-screenshotLetterbox was born of this plea and subsequent discussion at Ars Technica.

Letterbox: Widescreen Plugin for Mail.app | aaron.harnly.net | Aaron Harnly

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Get Your NetFlix Freak on

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Date: Wednesday, June 7th, 2006, 20:18
Category: Software

netflix-freak.jpgIf you’re a NetFlix subscriber there’s a cool little application that you need to check out called NetFlix Freak.
NetFlix Freak is a Mac OS X application for managing your rental queue that is a must have for fellow freaks. In addition to viewing and managing your rental queue, NetFlix Freak offers some features that aren’t available on NetFlix.com.
For example, on the site you have to use a cryptic button interface to rearrange movies in your queue (something you need to do a lot) but NetFlix Freak allows you to drag and drop your films to rearrange them. You can also add movies to the top or bottom of your queue with one click, shuffle your queue and keep notes on movies.
The latest version supports NetFlix profiles and allows you to search IMDb, Google Movies, Rotten Tomatoes, or Amazon for movie details. I prefer to use NetFlix Freak over the Web site. The interface is simple and fast and it’s a lot easier to spontaneously add a film that you want to see using NetFlix Freak as opposed to wading through the cluttered NetFlix Web site.
Granted, NetFlix.com is busy by design. They want you to constantly rate movies so that they can build a better profile about you thus improving their recommendations. My problem is that I find myself endlessly clicking on movie ratings when I’m on the site and I forget what I came to it for in the first place.
NetFlix Freak is so loved at the PowerPage that it’s an O’Grady’s PowerPick. Download a 30-day free trial or buy it for US$15 from The Little App Factory.
O'Grady's PowerPick 2006

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Flip4Mac WMV v2.1 Goes Universal

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Date: Tuesday, June 6th, 2006, 08:28
Category: Software

flip4mac.pngFlip4Mac WMV v2.1 allows you to play Windows Media content in Apple’s QuickTime player so that you can finally uninstall Windows Media Player forever. The new v2.1 version is now Universal Binary.

Flip4Mac WMV is a collection of QuickTime components that allow you to play, import and export Windows Media files. Flip4Mac WMV can be used with most of your favorite QuickTime applications including QuickTime Player, iMovie and Final Cut Pro.
The Flip4Mac WMV components are compatible with Mac Intel and PowerPC OS X versions 10.3.9 and 10.4 and QuickTime versions 6.5 and 7.1 (recommended).

Although it’s a closed beta, there are some download links posted in the comments on Digg.com.

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Killer Treo App: Highway Manager

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Date: Thursday, June 1st, 2006, 14:48
Category: Software

highway-mgr.gifWith the gas prices today, everyone is keeping a closer eye on their fuel economy. I used to carry a little printed spreadsheet in my glove box and meticulously track every fill up to keep tabs on my MPG. Now with the advent of the Treo 650 smartphone I’ve found the replacement for the little piece of paper in the the glove.
Highway Manager (US$15) is a great little application from the developer of Tiny Stocks (another of my Treo faves) that allows you to easily track your fuel economy on a Palm or Windows Mobile powered device. At each fill up you enter the odometer reading (in miles or kilometers), the amount of fuel (in gallons or liters) how much you paid, and the rest is done for you.
Highway Manager not only shows you the bad news (!) it also presents it in a number of different ways. The charts and graphs are compelling but I mostly keep it on the MPG screen. Highway Manager will even give you statistics a vehicle basis (it tracks up to 10) or on a date range basis (“how much did I spend last quarter?”).
Every entry can be assigned to a different category (e.g.: business, personal, etc) allowing you to easily categorize all the expenses relating to your car or motorcycle. Highway Manager also supports the concept of a trip allowing you to track of statistics based on an event. Each entry can be annotated with notes which are handy come tax time.
Sure beats that little piece of paper.

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Aperture Update Squeezes Older Systems

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Date: Thursday, May 25th, 2006, 12:00
Category: Software

aperture-box-200.jpgI wanted to bring to your attention a major problem Aperture users are experiencing. Like many others when Aperture was released I ordered a new PowerMac to be able to run Aperture. At the time the nVIDIA GeForce 6600 was a recommended video card.
With the release of Aperture 1.1 the minimum system requirements have jumped up quite a bit.
While he GeForce 6600 is still “supported” with 1.1 the issue is that it used to be a “recommended” card with Aperture 1.0 and now it is part of the “minimum system requirements” just barely making the minimum. I purchased the PowerMac specifically to use with Aperture.
While I do not expect Apple to maintain full backwards system compatibility I think this is certainly excessive. As it currently stands Aperture is painfully slow and all indications are the only fix is upgrading my graphics card to the GeForce 7800 GT.
Unfortunately Apple will not sell this card alone nor do they provide an upgrade path. I along with many other users have discussed this on the Aperture mailing list and we are hoping to group together a sufficient number of users to help encourage Apple to offer an upgrade option to the GeForce 7800 or take my system back and I will order a new one with the GeForce card. The discussion is available online at here.
Contributed by: Alex Rodriguez

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.Mac Public Folders Accessible in a Browser

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Date: Thursday, May 11th, 2006, 08:00
Category: Software

If you’ve got a .Mac account and want to share files with non-Mac users, or if you are a PC user, and want to access a .Mac user’s Public folder, things have just got a lot easier.
Entering the URL ‘idisk.mac.com/membername-Public’ (where ‘membername’ is the, erm, member’s name) in your web browser will render a page that includes download links for the contents of that .Mac account’s Public folder.
You can also let friends and colleagues use your iDisk Public folder page to upload and share files themselves by selecting the iDisk pane in .Mac System Preferences and choosing the Read/Write option for your Public Folder.
There is the option to add password-protection if you want to limit access to a chosen few. If you add password-protection, your visitors will be prompted for a password when they first visit your Public folder. Note: your visitors should enter “public” (without the quotes) in the Name field when prompted for the Name and Password by Safari.
Web Public folders requires on of the following browsers (it doesn’t currently work with Flock -Ed):
- Safari 1.3 or later (Mac)
- Firefox 1.0.4 or later (Mac or Win)
- Explorer 6 or later (Win)
Contributed by: Brett Jordan

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Tiny Stocks’ Stock Manager for Palm OS

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Date: Wednesday, May 3rd, 2006, 08:00
Category: Software

stock-manager.gifStock Manager (US$25) is a best-selling stock portfolio program for mobile phones and is a must have for Treo-toting mobile technologists with a stock portfolio.
If you have a smartphone with a mobile data plan you can get up-to-date stock information over the Internet. Stock Manager also comes with a desktop synchronization module that automatically updates your portfolio when you synchronize your device with your computer.
Stock Manager retrieves the current stock price, the day’s high, low, change, volume, bid, ask and 52-week high and low values. It’s also multi-currency enabled and features customizable alerts based on current price, profit and profit percent.
If you’re looking for a way to keep tabs on your portfolio while you’re on the go, Stock Manager is a perfect solution. It’s a must have for Treo smartphone users IMHO.
Tiny Stocks’ Stock Manager (US$25, free trial) is available for Palm OS, Windows Mobile Pocket PC and Windows Mobile Smartphone.

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