O'Grady's PowerPage » Software

Parker Sets About Spring Cleaning

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Date: Tuesday, May 29th, 2007, 10:19
Category: Software

PowerPage Associate Editor Rob Parker has apparently embarked upon spring cleaning and sent this image along to demonstrate what Unsanity’s utilities can do:


This effect is achieved via a combination of utilities called ShapeShifter, ClearDock and MightyMouse, which allow for the Mac OS X interface to be customized. The theme shown above is called Eternal 1.2 and the MightyMouse cursor set is known as “lambda”.
The programs are currently coded as universal binaries and run at native speeds on both PowerPC and Intel-based hardware.
Not bad, especially considering when Apple first released Mac OS X, the company had tightened controls as to how appearances could be altered, the classic Kaleidescope program dropping by the wayside.
If you’ve found any cool hacks or ways to change your system’s appearance outside of the standard Mac OS X controls, let us know.


BackRow Developer’s Kit for Apple TV Emerges

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Date: Tuesday, May 29th, 2007, 07:23
Category: Software

Developer Alan Quatermain has released a software development kit for Apple TV plug-ins. The BackRow Developer’s Kit program allows users to create custom menu interfaces and other software compatible with Apple TV. The package includes templates as well as framework code to begin working on projects.
Full information can be found on the project’s web site and the current version of the BackRow Developer’s Kit is available as a 1.0 megabyte download.
A sample movie of the software in action can be seen here.
This isn’t for the techie faint of heart, but it is interesting and may allow you to do something new with your Apple TV.
If you’ve played with this and have an opinion about it either way, let us know.


Early Version of G4FanControl Now Available

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Date: Monday, May 28th, 2007, 08:59
Category: Software

Software developer Andrea Fabrizi has released G4FanControl 0.2, a small utility that can be used to specify a certain minimum temperature limit that much be reached before the fans on an iBook G4 or PowerBook G4 laptop start up (note: Apple sets the default temperature limit to 60° on these units).
The G4FanControl utility is run out of Mac OS X’s Terminal program and users need to be logged in as root. Default temperature limits will be restored by Mac OS X in the event of a reboot.
To download the software and give it a try, click here.
If you’ve tried the utility and have feedback either way, let us know.


Cool Apps Receive Timely Updates

Posted by:
Date: Friday, May 25th, 2007, 10:16
Category: Software

It’s been a little while since we did a software roundup, but several incredibly useful applications have just received updates within the past few days.
Here we go:
iSale 4.1:
One of the quintessential Mac tools for eBay, iSale has been updated to version 4.1. The new version, a 57.9 megabyte download, adds the following fixes and features:
-New: Support for uploading your pictures to Picasa Web Albums.
-New: Support for new USPS shipping options.
-New: Auctions can be deleted from within groups.
-New: Auctions can be moved into groups in bulk.
-New: Auctions can be selected and deleted in bulk.
-New: A list of selected auctions can be printed.
-New: The selling date of an item is automatically added to the buyer’s Address Book entry.
Click the jump for the full story…


DVDxDV Pro Updated with Apple TV Export Feature

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, May 24th, 2007, 10:31
Category: Software

DVDxDV, creators of DVDxDV Pro, a program used to export content from unencrypted DVDs to the Mac, have updated the program to version 1.085. The new version, a 3.9 megabyte download, adds an Apple TV export feature.
DVDxDV retails for a US$80 registration fee and requires Mac OS X 10.3.9 or later to run as well as QuickTime 7.0.3 or later to export video to iPod video units.
If you’ve tried the new version and have feedback about it either way, let us know.


Battery Drain 1.0 Released

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Date: Wednesday, May 23rd, 2007, 08:28
Category: Software

In the category of “hey, that could be interesting”, developer Scott Finney has released Battery Drain 1.0, a free utility designed to allow laptop users to drain their batteries to a specified amount in order to prepare them for long-term storage (Apple recommends a 50% charge prior to a few months of inactivity).
Once the specified charge has been reached, Battery Drain will shut down the computer and allow the user to store it safely. One alert reviewer has noted that laptop batteries will only hold their charge for a few months in storage, so while this might not be the ultimate catch-all solution, it should help in the shorter term.
Battery Drain is a 125 kilobyte download courtesy of MacUpdate and requires Mac OS X 10.4.2 or later to run.
If you’ve played with this and can provide feedback about it, let us know.


Unboxing: Final Cut Studio 2

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, May 23rd, 2007, 00:01
Category: Software

The PowerPage’s resident videographer Rob Parker has unboxed his shiny new Final Cut Studio 2 box and has posted five pictures of the packaging in a Flickr photostream.


QuickTime’s Understated Sidekick: Perian

Posted by:
Date: Monday, May 21st, 2007, 08:23
Category: Software

Sometimes your friends open up a network port on their Macs and let you see some of what you’ve been missing. And no matter how savvy or cool you think you are with your shareware, workarounds and free programs, they demonstrate something that blows you away.
Recently, a friend showed me Perian, a set of open source QuickTime components that provide additional support for AVI, FLV, 3ivX, DivX, Sorenson H.263 and other video formats. The end result was QuickTime cleanly opening and working with file formats that had previously needed third party programs such as VLC to play back.
Perian 0.5 is a 944 kilobyte download courtesy of cachefly and requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later to run.
If you’re interested, give it a shot and let us know what you make of the experience.
Perian is free yet backed by donations and the development group accepts tips via Paypal. If you like what they’re doing, chip in a little bit and support the effort or take a look at the project’s wiki to learn how to become involved with development and testing.


Adium X Updated to Version 1.0.4

Posted by:
Date: Monday, May 21st, 2007, 08:00
Category: Software

Adium, the free multiple-protocol chat client with support for environments such as AIM, ICQ, Jabber, MSN, Yahoo!, Google Talk and Novell Groupwise, has been updated to version 1.0.4 and includes bells and whistles such as tabbed messaging and encrypted chat modes for privacy.
The new version, a 13.2 megabyte download, adds the following fixes and changes:
-Fixed a crash introduced in 1.0.3 which could occur when accounts disconnected or status changed.
-Fixed a crash introduced in 1.0.3 which could occur after a chat is closed.
-Fixed group chat when message history is enabled.
-Fixed incorrect updating of icons in an active chat when a contact’s icon changes or your own icon changes.
-Properly upgrade OTR fingerprints and private keys made in Adium 1.0.2 and earlier (#6891).
-Fixed deletion of temporary images when they are no longer needed (#4711 and #6732).
-Fixed a crash when command-dragging the message window (#6873)/
-Improved chat transcript viewer performance after finishing transcript indexing.
-Added ability for external processes to communicate with Adium via Distributed Objects (connection name: @”com.adiumX.adiumX”).
-We now follow updates to the system time zone (#5383).
Adium requires Mac OS X 10.3.9 or later to run and is coded as a Universal Binary capable of running at native speeds on both PowerPC and Intel-based hardware.
If you’re tried the new version and have feedback about it either way, let us know.


PageSender Updated to Version 4.0.1

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, May 16th, 2007, 09:45
Category: Software

Maybe a quick software update’s good for the ego. Or at least it keeps you honest. Less than two weeks after the widescale release of PageSender 4.0, SmileOnMyMac has released version 4.0.1 of its PageSender fax program, which functions as an extended set of tools for Mac OS X’s built-in fax features.
PageSender retails for US$39.95, allows users to send and receive faxes from any program as well as automate when faxes are sent and received.
The new version adds the following features and changes:
-Address Book panel works in Carbon apps (e.g. Word, FileMaker Pro, etc.)
-Live addressing works in Carbon apps.
-Cover page messages can have returns.
-Create new recipients by clicking in the address list.
-MaxEmail and EasyLink work as selected.
-Fixed problem with quitting PageSender Fax Center.
-Other minor fixes and improvements.
PageSender 4.0.1 is coded as a Universal Binary and can function at native speeds on both PowerPC and Intel-based hardware. The program is a 6.6 megabyte download and requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later to run.
If you’ve tried the new version and can offer feedback or impressions, let us know.