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November 18th, 1999

[4:10 PM] Adds Extensis Photoframe To Online Arsenal
by Staff

Extensis has rolled out the latest edition to their online image editing tools for The new product is called PhotoFrame and it allows users to make edges for their images. According to Extensis:

The Extensis Products Group of, Inc. today introduced its newest e-Service, PhotoFrame Online. With PhotoFrame Online, users can now instantly create a variety of beautifully rendered frame and edge effects for their images directly within a Web browser, without the need to install or configure desktop software. PhotoFrame Online is currently available free to members at

Versatile Effects and Interactive Previews

With PhotoFrame Online, users can build their own custom frame and edges by working from a variety of frames designed by professional artists. These frames can be rotated to any degree and enhanced with a range of effects including blur, color, opacity, and blend modes for both the background and the border. With real-time previews and interactive controls, users can instantly see the results of their changes. When the frame is finished, it can be easily saved to preserve the desired look of the image.

How PhotoFrame Online Works

A hallmark of Extensis e-Services is that they require no file upload. All image processing occurs locally on a customer's own computer, without the installation of any special desktop software, making Extensis e-Services both quick and convenient. This is made possible through a small PhotoFrame Online browser plug-in that is self-installing, self-configuring and self-updating. Because the processing of digital images always takes place on the customer's own machine, document security and bandwidth are not an issue; PhotoFrame Online does not move or copy documents to the PhotoFrame server at any point in the process.

System Requirements

PhotoFrame Online supports both Macintosh and Windows platforms and has been optimized for use with Netscape Navigator and Internet Explorer 4.0 or greater. Users can enhance and save JPEG files.

PhotoFrame Online is currently free to members. PhotoFrame 2.0, a Photoshop plug-in with many more features, is available for an estimated street price of $199.95.

[5:15 PM] Mega Minesweeper Update Sweeps Away The Bugs
by Staff

Carrot Software has released another update to Mega Minesweeper, bringing the game to version 0.9.5. The new version squashes several bugs. According to Carrot Software:

Carrot Software has released version 0.9.5 of their classic game Mega Minesweeper. It is currently available only in English. However, a Swedish version will be posted shortly followed by other languages.

The new features and fixes in this version are:

  • The Navigator window now supports large fields via scroll bars! You can also drag the tracking rect and the Navigator window will scroll to keep up with you.
  • Fixed a bug which started the clock before the first move was over.
  • Added an option in the Preferences to NOT track modifier keys during clicks. This corrects problems multi. button mice users were having.
  • Restores old scroll bar positions when opening a saved game.
  • Removed expiration date

You can find more information on the release at the company's web site. The release is free as the software works towards a final release.

Carrot Software

4:45 PM] Russo/German Relations Can Now Take A Step Forward With Release Of Verbs & Nouns Update
by Staff

Richard Wellmann has released an update to his excellent translation software, Verbs and Nouns Russisch. This is part of the overall Verbs and Noun series that covers many different languages. This update improves the dictionary and makes other enhancements to the Russian-German version. According to Mr. Wellman:

Version 2.1 of "Verbs and Nouns Russisch", multimedia-inflection-dictionaries for the Foreign Language Toolkit, is now available. The dictionaries contain almost 20,000 Russian words with appr. 250,000 forms, 100,000 German translations, thousands of examples and more than 1,100 pronounciation-samples and 450 high-quality-pictures. An all-new manual (pdf-format) is enclosed. The dictionaries may be used with lessons of the "Toolkit Reader" to look up new foreign words, to study Russian words (including declenision and conjugation!), to translate unknown Russian text by single word or word-by-word and, last but not least, to perform spell-checks on Russian text you wrote. As a user you can expand, im- and export, update and merge dictionaries.

You can find more information on the product at the company's web site.

Verbs and Nouns

4:45 PM] It's Basic, Really, But It's An Alpha Release
by Staff

REAL Software has released REALbasic 2.1a23. REAL stresses that alpha releases are NOT considered full working products, and are intended to be used for testing. According to REAL Software:

REAL Software is pleased to announce the latest development release of REALbasic 2.1a21. These alpha releases are for testing purposes only and are not considered the current release of REALbasic. Projects saved in alpha releases of 2.1 cannot be opened in REALbasic 2.0.2. You should not use alpha releases for mission-critical development.

  • Key:
  • [Opt] = Optimization
  • [Bug] = Bug Fix
  • [New] = New Feature
  • [Chg] = Changes Previous Functionality

a23 notes:

  • [Bug] Win32 now supports keyboard objects. The key codes are mapped directly from the Mac "Extended Keyboard Layout". The following is a list of keys which have mappings which aren't necessarily obvious: Option = Alt, Command = Windows, Help = Insert, Clear = Num Lock, F13 = Print Screen, F14 = Scroll Lock, F15 = Pause.
  • [New] You can pass raw Win32 key codes to GetAsyncKeyDown. Here is how you do it, Add 1 to the raw keyCode and put it in the high word of the integer you are passing. Example: Keyboard.AsyncKeyDown((rawKeyCode + 1) * &hFFFF) Passing Mac Keycodes in the high word is currently identical to passing them in the low word.
  • [Bug] Win32 now supports changing fonts in EditFields.
  • [Bug] Win32 now honors colors in EditFields. There are some circumstances where the editfield will not refresh properly however. Styled edit fields do not honor text color.
  • [New] Item "Clear" in the menu "Edit" is now enabled for deleting project items.
  • [Bug] Win32 built application icons have much more accurate color, blues and reds are no longer reversed.
  • [Bug] Double-byte intelligent text drag & drop behavior altered. Let us know if the change is inadequate.
  • [Bug] IM behavior altered. Should appear on double-byte localized versions of MacOS more frequently.
  • [Bug] Win32 built application icons no longer constrain the icon to a diamond when the ICN# resource isn't present.
  • [Bug] Win32 Movable Modal and Floating Dialog windows no longer cause crashes on Win32
  • [Bug] REALbasic breakpoint problem fixed (introduced in a22, gone in a23)
  • [Bug] Setting the password mode in an EditField no longer looses the current selection. (Mac and Win32)
  • [Chg] About box now reflects more accurate version information.
  • [Chg] REAL Software address is now correct in the About box.

You can find more information about the alpha release of REALbasic at the REAL Software web site.

REAL Software

[4:30 PM] PC PowerEmulator Updated With Mac OS 9 Compatibility
by Staff

Lismore Systems has updated the PC emulator program, Blue Label PowerEmulator, to version 1.5. The newer version includes several bug fixes and performance/feature enhancements. The Blue Label PowerEmulator allows users to install PC based operating systems and run software for those systems on a PowerMac. According to Lismore Systems:

Lismore Software Systems, Ltd. today released Blue Label PowerEmulator 1.5 Components Update 1.

This Update fixes bugs generally occurring in Mac OS 9 and on the newest Macintosh models. The fixed problems are:

  • Mac clock reset after exiting from the Emulator. This bug appeared while one uses some versions of Windows.
  • CD drive recognition in the Standard Dual IDE Controller setup. This bug appeared on some newest Macintosh models (usually iMac DV).
  • Mouse recognition at emulator startup. This bug appeared in MacOS 9.
  • Serial port recognition at emulator startup. This bug appeared on some PowerBook models.
  • Other little bugs fix.

Blue Label PowerEmulator is available for US$29.95. You can find more information at the Lismore Systems web site.

Lismore Systems

[4:20 PM] And All She Wants To Do Is Dance (And Play Cards)
by Staff

Cabaret Software has released a CD containing American classic ballroom dance songs, BALLROOM Solitaire. The catch is, the music is actually background for the now classic computer card game, Solitaire. According to Cabaret:

Cabaret Software, Inc. announces the immediate availability of BALLROOM Solitaire--Volume One, the first in an extraordinary new series of enhanced music compact discs featuring all-original American and International Style ballroom dance songs, coupled with first-of-its-kind computer software. The music can be played in any audio compact disc player, or the disc can be loaded into a compliant Macintosh or Windows computer to play solitaire card games set to an exquisite ballroom dance theme.

BALLROOM Solitaire--Volume One music includes thirteen original American Style compositions of Cha Cha, Rumba, E. C. Swing, Foxtrot, Waltz, Samba, Merengue, Bolero, Mambo, Tango, Viennese Waltz, W. C. Swing, and Hustle, as well as seven remakes in International Style for Waltz, Tango, Cha Cha, Rumba, Samba, Foxtrot, and Viennese Waltz, for a total of twenty tracks.

BALLROOM Solitaire--Volume One software includes Klondike (aka "solitaire") and thirteen unique sets of graphics which synchronize with he currently playing audio track. New games will be released over time which will be downloadable as add-ons to the software

BALLROOM Solitaire Volume 1 is available for US$24.95. You can find more information at the Cabaret Software web site.

Cabaret Software

[4:10 PM] Apple Opens OpenGL Performance To New Level
by Staff

Apple has released a new update to OpenGL. The new update includes increased performance, better support for AGP, new ATI drivers, and other enhancements. According to Apple:

OpenGL for Macintosh enables your computer to display three-dimensional graphics using applications designed to take advantage of OpenGL. OpenGL 1.1.2 includes the following changes:

  • Internal texture format hint is now supported
  • Better AGP texture management
  • Added support for Velocity Engine
  • Support for the EXT_texture_env_add extension

Lots of performance optimizations

This release also installs updated software for computers with the ATI RAGE 128 graphic accelerator card or on-board ATI RAGE graphic accelerator chip shipping in some Macintosh computers.

OS Required

  • Mac OS 8.1 or later

Software Required

  • QuickDraw 3D 1.6 (included with installation of OpenGL 1.1.2)

Hardware Required

  • A PowerPCTM based computer with a minimum of 32 megabytes of memory (RAM)

Installation Instructions

This software consists of a self-mounting Disk Copy compressed image (.smi) file. Download this software to your hard drive and then double-click it to use it.

You can find more information on the update, including download links, from Apple's web site. Mac OS 9 owners can use the Software Update control panel to automatically download it. [Note: Observers are reporting that some parts of the RoadRunner network are experiencing DNS problems that could prevent them from reaching Apple's web site. Patience, or a new provider, will see this solved.]

The Mac Observer Spin: This a much anticipated update to OpenGL. Hopefully it will fix some issues that have surrounded OpenGL and some recent game releases.

A Better Finder Info

[4:00 PM] The Apple Stock Watch: The Dow Heads Up, But Apple Closes Down
by Wes George

Onward with the rally, cheered the fearless bulls on Wall Street bolstered by the Consumer Price Index which showed no threat of inflation, and a study from the Commerce Department that said the Y2K problem will not slow the ongoing economic expansion. Hewlett Packard's big day accounted for about half of the Dow's upward momentum.

The Dow gained 152.6 points (1.40%) to close for the first time since September 13th above 11,000 at 11035. Volume was strong with a billion shares traded.

It was technology across the board that led the Nasdaq forward 77 points (2.37%) to end the session at 3347, yet another record high, the 12th in the last 15 trading sessions. 1.5 billion shares traded, making today the 2nd heaviest volume in history behind yesterday's all time record volume.

The S&P 500 rose 14.08 (1.00%) to close at 1424.79 for a new record high.

The 30-year bond was down 14/32 to close at 99 13/32, the yield rose to 6.16% from 6.12% yesterday. The rally was so strong not even rising yields could put a lid on it.

Unhappily, Apple didn't partake in the surge forward, losing 5/8 (0.69%) to close at 89 5/8 with a continuation of the less than average volume trend.

Hewlett Packard (HWP) soared 13 5/16 to close at 94 5/16 after announcing 4th quarter earnings yesterday that really pleased the analysts. HWP received an unusual 3 upgrades in one day. Also, Hewlett-Packard's spin-off Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE:A) went public today, offering 72 millions shares at $30 a share. Agilent rose 12 3/8 to close at 42 3/8. HWP retains an 85% stake in of Agilent.

Apple related stocks took it on the chin, Akamai, Arm Holdings, and Symantec ended lower. Only Adobe and Macromedia joined the rally. Macromedia soared, up 9 3/8 to end at 67 1/4 on the news that Fortune Magazine selected Macromedia to join Fortune's e-50, "an aggregate of 50 companies Fortune Magazine will use as a guide to track the growth and impact of the Internet economy."

Apple's Power PC partners, IBM and Motorola were both very strong. IBM climbed 4 points to 97 3/4, while Motorola rose 5 1/16 to 124 1/16, even though Motorola said that it would take a $500 million charge in the 4th quarter for debts it owes Iridium.

Apple's competitors were in the money. Compaq was up 1 1/4 to close at 25. Intel rose 3 3/4 to end at 78 1/2. Only Gateway end off, down fractional at 78. Microsoft sat the day out closing down slightly.

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.


[1:45 PM] The Allegro Themes Project Redesigns And Moves
by Staff

The Allegro Themes Project has moved to a new home, a new URL, and has changed up the site. The Allegro Themes Project is a group working on making new themes for Mac OS 8.5 and above as well as a Theme editor. The group has released several new themes. According to the Project:

The Allegro Themes Project would like to thank Philip at for kindly hosting our web site for the last few months, but the time has come for us to move to a new server. The new server is hosted by XNOT, which hosts a number of open-source projects and allows us access to a number of features and possibilities we have not had before. We are looking at the possibility of purchasing our own domain so this will not happen again. We encourage other Mac open-source projects to check out XNOT and see what they have to offer.


As always, our major goal is the creation of a theme appearance editor. A lot of hard work has been done to reach that goal. We have recently been provided with a CVS server by XNOT so that everyone can work on the project together over the Internet. This will be very helpful and we hope that we can be joined by many interested developers over the Internet.

Ryan, our head developer, has been busy reorganizing the source code into modules that can be assigned to interested developers. If you are interested in working on the project please check out our development site to see what modules still need owners. You can also contact the owner of a project and help out in a smaller way. We are grateful for all of the help we can get.


The theme appearance designers in the project have also been busy. We recognize that speed is an important component of usability and to that extent we've been profiling the different ways of drawing a window in an effort to make things as fast as possible. That is why we are proud to announce:

  • Paper 2.0: Using the new drawing techniques, it is over twice as fast in our informal tests.
  • Neutech 1.0: An entirely new theme with an hi-tech look. It also uses the new drawing techniques.

The Allegro Themes Project is a not-for-profit organization who works together over the Internet to create themes and theme-designing programs. They are not funded by any corporation, and receive no money for their work. To find out more, or to join their development team, visit their web site at:

You can find more information on Allegro Themes project at the organization's web site. As of press time, we had some amount of difficulty accessing the site.

The Allegro Themes Project

[Column] iTeen - How To Build A Successful Web Page: Part I

[Column] Ask Dave - Novell Networks, G4s, DVD ROM or RAM, And More On DSL Stalls

[8:30 AM] MacLaunch Launches Launch Date
by Staff

MacLaunch, a self-styled Mac Internet Portal, has announced an official launch date. Better yet, the company has also announced a slew of prizes to kick off that launch. The company is giving away all manner of Mac products, including an iBook. According to MacLaunch:

MacLaunch today announced that it will be officially open to the world wide Macintosh user community on Wednesday December 1 1999.

MacLaunch also announced the following list of prizes to be given away to MacLaunch users in random drawings throughout the day on December 1.

Prizes include an iBook from Bottomline, two copies of WebSTAR 4.0 form StarNINE, One copy of Media Cleaner PRO from Terran Interactive, Ten copies of eMerge from Galleon Software, Ten copies of Mac Ticker, Drag Strip, Sun Dial, Spring Cleaning from Aladdin Systems, Twenty copies of Gridz from Green Dragon Software, Ten copies of Guitar Method from eMedia, One year of FREE Internet access and One year of FREE web hosting from MacConnect.

To enter the MacLaunch prize drawings, Mac users must register for free MacLaunch user accounts. Each free account includes web based e-mail, live chat, discussion boards, and full access to all MacLaunch features.

MacLaunch is dedicated to providing a wide range of online information and communication services with a decidedly Mac-centric twist. Picking up where standard Internet portal sites fall short for the Mac user community, MacLaunch combines Mac-centric news, opinions, software updates, shopping opportunities and a fully searchable database of Mac-related Internet sites with standard portal tools such as free e-mail, chat services, news, sports, weather, financial management tools and a global Internet directory/search service.

You can check out MacLaunch now.


[8:30 AM] A Better Finder Series Enhanced With New Utility
by Staff

Shareware utility guru Frank Reiff has announced a new member to his A Better Finder series of utilities. A Better Finder Info targets the Mac's Get Info feature and allows greater control over files. According to Mr. Reiff:

A Better Finder Info is the 5th member in the A Better Finder series of Finder enhancements

A Better Finder Info is a contextual menu plugin for the Macintosh Finder, which supplements the Finder's "Get Info..." feature and provides additional information about files and folders. It allows users to display and change file attributes such as Finder flags, file creator and type codes, etc..

A Better Finder Info allows the following file properties to be displayed and changed:

  • Finder flags, such as "Is Invisible", "Use Custom Icon", etc.
  • file creator and type
  • file lock
  • name lock
  • etc.

Multiple access methods for all your needs:

  • fully integrated with the Finder via contextual menu by dropping the files onto the "Drop application"

Other features:

  • easy interface
  • integration with A Better Finder Creators & Types and A Better Finder Attributes
  • fully integrated with Macintosh Finder
  • additional file information displayed
  • A Better Finder Info is the 5th member in the A Better Finder series of Finder enhancements


A PowerMacintosh with MacOS 8 or later.

You can find more information, including a nifty animation demonstrating its prowess, at the company's web site. A Better Finder Info is priced at US$10 and is available now.

A Better Finder Info

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