In the earliest versions of iTunes, it was possible to simply drag and drop tunes from inside your iTunes library directly onto your Desktop. This would inevitably result in duplicates of the selected tunes appearing on your Desktop, which you can then port into the desired medium (thumbdrives, CDR or CD/RW, DVD or DVD/RW) for transportation.
In the later version of iTunes, what you might not know is that you might have actually created some files from your iTunes library without knowing it. Causing invisible files to exist on your Desktop or wherever you've attempted to drag and drop them but appeared to have failed. With no files showing up in the location where the purported migration was targeted to occur.
This can cause overall system slowing, especially if you have attempted to migrate a large number of files from iTunes and appeared to have failed.
Tuesday, November 01 2005 @ 07:49 AM SGT Contributed by: Mack
It seems that rescuing Apple from the brink of closing its doors isn't all that Steve has done. In the latest PC Magazine WiFi report, Apple's Airport has received it reader's choice awards, with this year's overall highest rating in the realm of wireless networking gear!
"Apple wireless routers receive this year's highest overall rating score (8.9). This is especially noteworthy given that, in general, wired routers outscore wireless. Part of its high ratings may stem from ease of setup: Apple routers tend to be connected to simpler-to-do-everything Macintoshes. "
In today's hi-tech WiFi world, ease of use with Apple's Airport technology is a given. Although, coming to market at relatively higher pricing, Airport hardware has the edge in ease of set up, funky industrial design and longevity. Airport is also one of the first to market to support audio streaming with the introduction of Air Tunes, with the advent of the Airport Express. Much of which has been taken for granted that in its absence we might wonder what life would be like... without your favourite tunes rocking from your living room, bed room or even kitchen at a click of a mouse.
Tuesday, November 01 2005 @ 07:16 AM SGT Contributed by: Mack
We recently received an email query regarding software that can be used on Mac OS X that would playback dvf format (a Sony proprietary format for compressed voice files) audio files. Apparently, originally used to record a meeting's conversation. The user received dvf audio files for reference that could not natively be played on any applications that shipped with Mac OS X and befuddled, in our quest to assist, we came across this freeware from, Australian-based, NCH Swift Sound.
Among the plethora of open audio formats currently in use -- wav, mp3, ogg, gsm, dct, flac, au, aiff, vox and raw; and proprietary audio formats -- wma, aac, atrac (.wav), ra, ram, dss, msv and dvf; Express Scribe supports most of them.
For free... [edited] "Looks like there's no free lunch -- despite the misleading claim at the NCH site (which has since been amended after inflammatory feedback from a disappointed Mac user, known only as, Simon -- see comments), the Mac OS X version of Express Scribe only supports wav, mp3, aiff and dct file formats." (Mack)
If you're currently looking for other audio related software, NCH Swift Sound is worth a look. In addition to audio-related software, they also offer related hardware.
Monday, October 31 2005 @ 08:05 AM SGT Contributed by: Mack
With the introduction of the latest instalment of Macromedia's suite of web design applications, Studio 8, comes an updated, Flash Player 8.
Although, most Flash-enabled sites usually sport Flash Player Detection Kits to alert viewers to the fact that they need to install a Flash player to view the site, you can pre-empt the hassle by getting your copy of Flash Player 8.
Monday, October 31 2005 @ 04:22 AM SGT Contributed by: Mack
Some time ago (when we were too preoccupied with other developments) Google has introduced a Gmail Notifier with versions for both Windows XP and Mac OS X 10.3 Tiger.
Its a nifty little package that has all the bells and whistles of a finely crafted addition to your family of icons that already have a home on your Mac OS X menubar. Allowing you to receive alerts when you receive new emails in your Gmail Inbox without the need to have Apple Mail running. It also provides useful information at a glance, telling you whom the email is from and the subject title of the new email.
The best bit about the Gmail Notifier which may often go unnoticed is its ability to store your Gmail account details in your Mac OS X Keychain in confidence. Allowing you to never have to constantly key it in and protecting your privacy, at the same time.
This feature receives a mention because we've come across Dashboard widgets that have purported to provide a subset of functions that are present in the Gmail Notifier but your user password appears blatantly in alphanumeric characters. Giving away your account details to any user of your Mac system.
The other added bonus of installing the Gmail Notifier is the luxury of receiving alerts without having to check on your Dashboard every so often, which is commonly the case with Gmail Dashboard widgets.
You buy Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger, you install it into your Mac and everything's fine in your world. However, in previous incarnations of Mac OS 9 and OS X, Allume Systems' Stuffit Expander shipped as part of the Mac OS X bundle. Its absence in Mac OS X Tiger, only becomes painfully obvious when you come across an archived or zipped file that needs to be expanded.
Although, Mac OS X Tiger retains the built-in ability to compress files (see our earlier article: Mac OS X Panther | Zipping/Compressing Files), Stuffit is still a basic system requirement to expand compressed files. If you're new to Mac having just switched from PC's, think 'WinZip'. Stuffit Expander can be said to be its Mac counterpart.
This issue does not affect users who upgrade to Mac OS X Tiger from previous versions of Mac OS X since Stuffit Expander is already resident in your previous version of Mac OS X.
For the rest of us, you can download your free copy of Allume Systems Stuffit Expander here. Its hardly surprising that Stuffit Expander is topping Apple Download page's Top Downloads list, at press time.
There have been mixed emotions since Apple's introduction of its 'iTunes phone' (ROKR) during its September 2005 unveiling ceremony at the infamous San Francisco, Moscone Center.
Undoubtedly, some of us imagined a sleek, slim and impeccably industrial designed phone whilst others still stand sceptical over Motorola's cell phone software improvements. This became exacerbated when Steve, in his onstage demonstration of one of the ROKR's most crucial features: effortless switching from MP3 player to phone and back again. After taking a call from a colleague, he went back to … nothing. Silence. "Well," he said, looking perplexed, "I'm supposed to be able to resume the music right back to where it was. …" Then: "Oops! I hit the wrong button."
To compound the issue further, reading the fine print you discovered that you can't use it to buy music over the airwaves, that it's painfully slow at loading songs from iTunes on your computer, and that it comes restricted to a 100-song limit. No matter how much of its 512 megabytes of flash memory you have left, you cannot load any more tracks.
Friday, October 21 2005 @ 08:36 AM SGT Contributed by: Mack
In addition to enhancing the Apple Pro line hardware, on 19 October 2005, Apple also introduced Aperture, the first all-in-one post production tool that provides everything photographers need after the shoot. Aperture offers an advanced and incredibly fast RAW workflow that makes working with a camera’s RAW images as easy as JPEG. Built from the ground up for pros, Aperture features powerful compare and select tools, nondestructive image processing, color managed printing and custom web and book publishing. This comes as a timely solution to work and manage RAW files.
“Aperture is to professional photography what Final Cut Pro is to filmmaking,” said Rob Schoeben, Apple’s vice president of Applications Marketing. “Finally, an innovative post production tool that revolutionizes the pro photo workflow from compare and select to retouching to output.”
“Until now, RAW files have taken so long to work with,” said Heinz Kluetmeier, renowned sports photographer whose credits include over 100 Sports Illustrated covers. “What amazed me about Aperture is that you can work directly with RAW files, you can loupe and stack them and it’s almost instantaneous—I suspect that I’m going to stop shooting JPEGs. Aperture just blew me away.”
Friday, October 21 2005 @ 08:20 AM SGT Contributed by: Mack
19 October 2005, is a date to put on your Apple landmark calendar. Its the day Apple introduced its first quad-core processing PowerMac G5. Providing quad-core processing with two 2.5 GHz dual-core PowerPC G5 processors. All Power Mac G5 models now feature dual-core processors, a new PCI Express architecture and higher performance graphics options including NVIDIA’s Quadro FX 4500, bringing the industry standard for workstation graphics to the Mac.
A quad processor is to apply quadruple the processing power and solve problems in one quarter the time.
Quote from Apple's press release:
"With two 2.5 GHz dual-core processors, each with 1MB of L2 cache, the Power Mac G5 Quad delivers breakthrough performance on applications used extensively by creative professionals and scientists. For example:
Final Cut Pro® 5 encodes SD video content up to 60 percent faster on the new Power Mac G5 Quad when compared with the Dual Processor 2.7 GHz Power Mac G5;
Adobe Photoshop runs a series of 45 commonly used filters and actions 43 percent faster on the new Power Mac G5 Quad when compared with the Dual Processor 2.7 GHz Power Mac G5;
Adobe After Effects renders video effects up to 69 percent faster on the new Power Mac G5 Quad when compared with the Dual Processor 2.7 GHz Power Mac G5;
LightWave 3D renders animation up to 59 percent faster on the Power Mac G5 Quad when compared with the Dual Processor 2.7 GHz Power Mac G5; and
The scientific benchmark Bioinformatics Benchmark System (BBS version 3) completes a comparison of genomic sequences up to 39 percent faster on the Power Mac G5 Quad when compared with the Dual Processor 2.7 GHz Power Mac G5."