Today's News On One Page

December 6th, 1999

[5:00 PM] Mac MP3 Fans Now Have A Source And Mailing List For MacMP3 Information
by Staff

A Mac MP3 web site called The Source has been officially unveiled. Along with the web site comes a mailing list featuring Mac MP3 information. According to The SOurce:

MP3s, while not new to the Mac, have experienced something of a renaissance of late on the platform. The Source has accompanied the Mac community through this wonderful and welcome growth.

The Source provides the following:

  • MP3 industry news relevant to the Mac community
  • MacMP3, the Mac community's MP3 mailing list
  • Mac MP3 software listings and updates
  • MP3 hardware listings, reviews, and prices
  • mp3engine, an MP3 search engine
  • MP3Source, a single page with links to MP3 search engines, MP3 streaming sites, news, and more
  • Discussion forum
  • Visual and audio plug-ins for MP3 players
  • Skins for SoundJam™ MP
  • How-To guides on a variety of MP3 topics
  • Relevant links of interest

MacMP3 is a new mailing list provided to the Macintosh community for the discussion of anything related to MP3s and Macintoshes. It is for beginners, experts, and everyone in between. Join to ask questions, share your knowledge, and discuss MP3 issues.

MacMP3 is available from The Source web site, but you can also subscribe by sending an e-mail to: [email protected].

So head to The Source for all your Mac MP3 information!

The Source

[5:00 PM] Looking For A Mac Business Plan Aid?
by Staff

MacTreasures has added a new app to their arsenal of hard to find Mac products. They have added Business Plan Toolkit, which is an aid for developing business plans on your Mac. According to MacTreasures:

MacTreasures, a web site specializing in Macintosh software and hardware not found on retail shelves announces the addition of Business Plan Toolkit to its web site.

Business Plan Toolkit, a comprehensive business plan works with MS Excel 5.0, MS Word 5.1, ClarisWorks 5.0 or MS Works 3.0 to develop complete text, fully-linked and complete financial analysis, dazzling business charts and professional-looking formatted printouts. New version 7.0 offers file compatibility with market-leader Business Plan Pro for Windows. Not a cookie-cutter boilerplate plan, Business Plan Toolkit provides table-by-table and topic-by-topic guidance to create a real plan with real cash flow and valuable analysis, puts concepts in user's own words. For a business plan you'll be proud to show to banker, investor or boss.

Business Plan Toolkit also includes detailed instructions for combining text, tables and charts. You end up with a comprehensive business plan that includes thorough financials and your own original text.

This title, and more, may be found on the MacTreasures web site. MacTreasures is an online web catalog currently listing almost 8,500 commercial unique and hard-to-find Macintosh software, hardware, and Newton products. Our titles are NOT found on retail shelves and are rarely promoted through direct mail catalogs. We carry software for everything from the Apple II's to the iMac's.

If you are interested in this product, you can find more information at the MacTreasures web site.

The Mac Observer Spin: For the record, this site is not related to The Mac Treasures Tracing Club based in Japan.

The Business Plan Toolkit is an important title for the Mac as there is a dearth of business development software for our market. It would be nice if the developers could add support for Office 98 in the next update.


[5:00 PM] December Edition Of About This Particular Macintosh Hits Virtual Stands
by Staff

Another month is upon us and the folks at About This Particular Macintosh (ATPM) have released the December edition. ATPM is a monthly web magazine available for download. This month they offer reviews, product news, editorials, Mac art, Tips, and some gift ideas. According to ATPM:

The holiday season is upon us, and as the staff of About This Particular Macintosh presents our December issue, we wish you the very best during this time of joy, and for the new year to come.

The staff of About This Particular Macintosh thanks all of our readers for another fabulous year. You are the reason we continue to publish what we feel is the best Macintosh e-zine around--by everyday Macintosh users, for everyday Macintosh users. We welcome your criticisms, questions, and praise. See you next year!

You can find this month's issue at the magazine's web site.


[4:40 PM] Apple Stock Watch: Strange Days on Wall Street, Another New High for Apple.
by Wes George

The Dow can't seem to advance as the technology laden Nasdaq powers ahead, encouraged by a strong productivity report that suggests the benefits of the new networked economy are kicking in.

Apple traded lower till the last hour then made a rapid come back to end the day up 1 13/16 or 1.56% at 117 13/16 on slightly below average volume.

International Data Corp., an econometric research company, announced today that they have lowered their forecasts for worldwide PC sales growth next year to 17% from 20%. "But a strong, year-on-year global Q4 consumer PC growth rate of 25.7 percent will keep global PC demand high," said IDC's research director, John Brown.

The Dow sagged 118 points (1.05%) to close at 11106, on a volume of 986 million shares traded.

The unstoppable Nasdaq gained 40 points (1.15%) to close at 3586 on 1.5 billion shares traded. Today was another new closing high for the Nasdaq. Yawn. This is the 49th record high this year, giving the Nasdaq a 63% year-to-date gain.

The S&P 500 lost 14.43 points (1.01%) to close at 1408.90.

Yahoo was added to the S&P 500 today, forcing S&P 500 stock index funds to add Yahoo (YHOO) to their portfolios. This drove Yahoo's price up by 67 3/16 or 23% and creating softness in the other 499 stocks in the index. Yahoo ended the session at 348 on a volume of 57 millions shares traded or 8 times average volume.

The bellwether 30-year Treasury bond rose 14/32 to close at 98 25/32, the yield dropped to 6.20% from 6.24% on Monday.

The US Labor Department revised its 3rd quarter productivity numbers up to an annual rate of 4.9% from an earlier estimate of 4.2%. Morgan Stanley Chief Economist Richard Berner said, "This data continues to underscore that, so far, the US economy is performing in a way where strong growth and low inflation can coexist."

In Apple related businesses, Akamai rose 9 1/4 to close at 226, as J .P. Morgan initiated coverage on Akamai Technologies Inc. (AKAM) this morning.

Adobe lost 2 1/2 to end at 60 5/8. Macromedia gave back 3 7/16 after soaring to a new high yesterday. Symantec was up 2 5/16 to close at 54 3/8.

Apple's Power PC partners, IBM and Motorola, were both up slightly.

Apple's competitors were mostly down, Gateway, Intel, and Microsoft all got hammered hard today. Hewlett Packard beat the second day of the Wintel down draft to close up 4 3/4 at 109 1/2.

Dell moved slightly higher on an upgraded by CIBC Oppenheimer to buy from hold. Dell also announced that it will start shipping Linux installed on some of their high-end servers, and that Red Hat Inc. (RHAT) will provide customer support. Redhat climbed 52 dollars to close at 284 1/8 for a one day gain of 22%.

For full quotes on all the companies mentioned in this article, we have assembled this set of quotes at Yahoo! for your reference. We also have many of these same quotes reported live (20 minute delay) on our home page. For other stories regarding Apple's stock activity, visit our Apple Stock Watch Special Report.


[3:45 PM] Apple Attracts The Ire Of Japan's Fair Trade Commission
by Staff

The courts and legal system have seemed to swing Apple's way during the last many months, but this may have changed in Japan. Though everyone and their brother has latched onto the story, it appears as if Reuters were the first to break the fact that Apple Japan was raided by their Fair Trade Commission. At issue is whether Apple conspired to maintain pricing on the iMac and iBook in the Japanese market. According to the Reuters Report:

A company spokeswoman confirmed that the watchdog Fair Trade Commission made an inspection, but she could not immediately give the reason. She declined to comment further, and the commission said it could not make any immediate comment.

Media reports said the commission suspects Apple Japan violated antitrust laws, pressuring retailers not to sell its popular iMac desktop and iBook notebook personal computers below retail list prices by threatening to suspend shipments.

This follows a string of court decisions favoring Apple in its pursuit of stopping iMac rip-offs, many of which have been in Japan. Apple was not available for comment.

The Mac Observer Spin: Apple has been kicking butt, and taking names in Japan for most of the last 15 months. At times, they have had time to alphabetize those names in the process. Recently Apple's market share has taken on mythical proportions, and there is no wonder that Apple has tried to maintain pricing support in the face of so much demand as the Japanese market can be very competitive. The only problem with that is that it smacks of anti-competitive practices and even has a faint Microsoft ring to it. Apple has had similar problems with US distributors and dealers but has used marketing money to try and maintain their official pricing policies. Those retailers who oriced below Apple's desired pricing levels were not eligible for marketing incentives.

Of course, Apple Japan was simply searched. Apple has not yet been convicted of any wrong doing, or even necessarily charged as if yet. Japan's Fair Trade Commision simply went looking for evidence.


[3:30 PM] DLJ Anaylst Sings Apple's Praised On CNBC
by Staff

Thomas Galvin, an analyst with Donaldson, Lufkin, & Jenrette, appeared on CNBC commenting on his favorite stocks. Who was his favorite? Apple Computer. Apple was listed as one of three stock picks that Mr. Galvin felt were good buys. The iMac was one of the primary reasons for that choice. According to Mr. Galvin:

Apple is well positioned with the iMac, tapping into consumers who want to get onto the Internet. They have their colorful machines, and the iMac continues to sell incredibly well.

Apple closed higher today. We will have a full report in today's Apple Stock Watch.

The Mac Observer Spin: It's good to see Apple continue to receive support from the financial community, even when they are trading at historic highs. It was only a few short months ago when Apple was trading in the 60 range that a couple of analysts backed off their ratings and called Apple overbought. Here we are today with Apple trading almost twice as high, and analysts can not sing Apple's praises loud enough. All those die-hard Mac fans who bought Apple in the teens and twenties must be enjoying themselves now! :-)

Donaldson, Lufkin, & Jenrette

[Column] On The Flip Side - Don't Kill Microsoft, Watch It Crumble By Itself

[Column] The Apple Trader - The Mother of All Tech Rallies Hails Apple's Ascendancy

[8:30 AM] Jamming Your MP3s Is Now Faster
by Staff

Casady & Greene, Inc., have updated the popular MP3 player/encoder to version 1.5. The new version includes a number of bug fixes and added performance features. According to Casady & Greene:

The success of this product has brought with it a slew of requests from its users, who were hungry for a full-featured Macintosh MP3 Player/Encoder. This latest revision of SoundJam MP focuses on enhancing its MP3 encoding with significant quality and performance improvements, as well as providing many new features.

SoundJam's new MP3 encoder includes:

  • Variable Bit Rate (VBR) encoding. This allows SoundJam MP to maximize its encoding capabilities, by allocating additional bits when the music is encoding is more complex, and by using fewer bits for less complicated passages.
  • An extremely fast "Faster" MP3 encoding mode. Encoding with this option at high bit rates (160 kbps or higher) will result in very fast, yet high quality encodings.
  • Play While Converting. This innovative capability allows the user to listen to the converted track, while it is being converted, for real-time feedback on your conversion settings. Cleverly, conversion continues at full speed while you listen to your music!

SoundJam 1.5 also includes better internet streaming performance, and batch conversion of CD's. Batch conversion automatically encodes all songs on a CD, when the CD is inserted. After all the songs are encoded, the CD will optionally eject, allowing you to insert the next CD.

SoundJam MP's encoding capabilities are exceptional, even for the most discerning Mac audiophile. As in previous versions, this new update is optimized for the Power Macintosh G4 with Velocity Engine.

SoundJam MP is available for US$39.95 in the download version, US$49.95 in the CD version. You can find more information at the SoundJam MP web site.

Casady & Greene - SoundJam MP

[8:30 AM] Urchin Analyzes Your Yellow Dog
by Staff

Quantified Systems Inc., have released have released the powerful web server log analyzer, Urchin, for Yellow Dog Linux. Urchin allows hit logs to be organized, summarized, and saved. According to Quantified Systems:

Urchin web visitor reporting from Quantified Systems, Inc. Urchin, the world's fastest webserver log analyzer, is now available for Yellow Dog Linux. Urchin creates attractive, in-depth HTML-based reports for every site on your server, and also the server itself. Specifically designed for large, high-traffic installations, Urchin is now used by, Honda, Virgin Records, (150,000+ web sites), the US Dept. of Defense, and thousands of others.

Urchin is available for Yellow Dog Linux for free for the adware form, or for US$995 in the ad-free form. You can find more information at the Quantified Systems web site.

Yellow Dog Linux

[8:30 AM] Tilery Update Includes Many New Features
by Staff

Semicolon Software has updated the desktop organizer/launcher utility, Tilery, to version 4.1. The new version include a host of new features and bug fixes. The Tilery functions like Apples own Launcher, but is far more customizable with a series of expanded features. According to Semicolon:

The Tilery displays tiles, each of which represents an application, document, folder, control panel, or other such item. Clicking a tile opens its item: applications are launched or brought to the front, documents are opened, folders' Finder windows are opened and displayed.

The Tilery supports Macintosh Drag and Drop. Dropping a document icon onto an application tile opens the document in the application; dropping anything onto a folder icon moves or copies it into the folder.

The Tilery is just an application. It's not an INIT or system extension, not a DA, not a control panel. It doesn't do anything that a well-behaved application shouldn't do, so it is reliable and highly compatible with the rest of your software. Complete on-line help with pictures and hyperlinks is available under The Tilery's Help menu.

System Requirements: Power Macintosh or 68020 or better, running System 7.0 or later. System 7.5 or later and color display are recommended but not required. Fully compatible with Mac OS 8 and Mac OS 9.

What's New in Version 4.1?

  • Improved tile placement: The Tilery now remembers your tile layouts at different screen sizes and monitor resolutions, and will correctly rearrange your tiles when your monitor setup changes. Helpful after playing that game that resets your monitor to 640x480 every time you run it! Also useful for Powerbook users who use a larger desktop monitor when not traveling, and folks who like to change their screen settings for different occasions.
  • "Select New Original" command allows tiles to be retargeted. This is especially handy when you've installed a new version of a favorite application, because you can easily switch your existing tile to use the new version.
  • Improved icon display - Tilery can now display the new 32-bit true-color icons, and because of improvements in the Mac OS, Tilery no longer tends to forget what the Finder's icon looks like. (Mac OS 8.5 and later.)
  • Tilery now uses Navigation Services (the new Open and Save dialogs) if enough memory is available. (Mac OS 8.5 and later.)

Bug Fixes:

  • The "Blank Tile" bug has been fixed at last!
  • Tiles can no longer be lost offscreen, under the menu bar, or under other tiles.
  • Drag and Drop now working again on 68K Macs.
  • Fixed a bug that could cause a system crash shortly after quitting The Tilery.
  • Other minor bug fixes and improvements.

The Tilery is available as shareware for US$15. You can find more information at the Semicolon Software web site.

Semicolon Software

[8:30 AM] Need The 411 On The Mac? Try Mac101
by Staff

MacInstruct and MacHome have teamed up to bring readers a new feature. MacHome's Mac101 will appear in their monthly newsletter, and will provide basic overviews of everything Mac, geared toward the new user. According to MacInstruct:

MacInstruct, the leading Mac tutorial web site, has joined up with MacHome to provide the monthly Mac101 section of its Hot Tips newsletter. MacInstruct's web site provides the web's best Mac tutorials and how-tos, and much more to Mac users all over the world. This work with MacHome is just one of many ways MacInstruct is expanding and reaching more readers.

"Whether you're new to the Mac family or an old hand with Apples, take a look at MacInstruct. This free web site provides detailed, accurate, and practical information in a friendly, accessible layout," says Owen W. Linzmayer, author of "Apple Confidential" and former MacAddict "Ask Us" columnist. Says Matthew Cone, the webmaster at MacInstruct, "MacInstruct is the only web site dedicated to teaching people how to use Macintosh computers. During the past few months, MacInstruct has become a brand name." He goes on to say, "MacInstruct's tutorials have become a valuable resource for Mac users around the world."

MacInstruct has also announced recently the addition of their own mailing list and special deals with Lotto Tracker II.

For more information on this new feature, you can visit either the MacInstruct web site or the MacHome web site.

MacInstruct - MacHome

[8:30 AM] How Do You Say Os X Server In French?
by Staff

There is a new Macintosh oriented web site in town, but this one dedicated to a French audience. The AUG Strasbourg (Apple User Group) site has burst on the scene in grand style, with pictures of the latest release of Apple's next operating system, OS X DP2.

For a new (and French) twist on Mac oriented news, and for those bilingual readers in our audience, visit the AUG Strasbourg site for more information.

The Mac Observer Spin: Welcome to the neighborhood!

AUG Strasbourg