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October 14th, 1999

[4:45 PM] VersionMaster: PlusMaker, SNES9X, A Better Finder Attributes Latest Updates

PlusMaker has been upgraded to version 1.0.3, SNES9X is booted to version 1.2.6a, and A Better Finder Attributes revised to version 1.4. These are the most recent updates listed at The Mac Observer's VersionMaster. You can find all the most recent updates with this service.

The Mac Observer's VersionMaster

[4:30 PM] Critters Updated With Many New Features

The makers of Critters have announced an update to the simulation title that offers the opportunity to watch life evolve. The new version includes a host of new features and other improvements.

Announcing the release of Critters 1.1, a new update to the artificial life program for the Macintosh. Critters uses true artificial life techniques to bring you a universe in which its occupants can evolve before your eyes. In Critters, none of the behavior is programmed into the simulation, the Critters themselves develop solutions through evolution to the problems of finding food, breeding, and avoiding predators.

Critters is an artificial life program for the Macintosh. It is designed to appeal to both students who want to learn more about evolution in real life and anyone who is inquisitive -- it is fun to play around with even if you are not directly interested in that area of science. It has a very mac-like interface and is packed with features, so you will find it easy to track your Critters as they evolve from moving in random patterns to making for food, avoiding predators, and knowing when to breed. And I really mean evolve.

The release of Critters has met a tremendous response, and so the new version of Critters takes on board several suggestions and builds upon the ease of use already present in Critters. Critters 1.1 has the following new features:

  • The settings can now be changed to any value by a dialog accessed through the Edit menu, rather than a choice of presets in separate sub-menus.
  • While Critters is not registered a registration reminder only appears once every 20 minutes, rather than once every 3 minutes.
  • Several small bugs have now been fixed.
  • In addition to these new features, Critters still retains its previous feature set, which is as follows:
  • Easy for anyone to use, it looks and works like all Mac applications should.
  • Allows you to set the size of the universe and how it will appear on screen.
  • Shows detailed statistics for the whole population so you can track the process of evolution.
  • Features a graph window, which allows you to view data as far as 5000 steps ago for analysis of useful values, such as population.
  • Lets you view and edit the genome of individual creatures, including the ability to track them and their offspring
  • Has comprehensive settings so you can set the parameters of the universe the Critters live in.
  • Universes can be saved and opened at a later date or sent to another person.
  • All the main windows can be captured as PICT files as a record or for any other use.
  • Includes an easy to use help feature that shows you the principles behind the way Critters works, without using reams of boring text.

Critters is priced at US$10 shareware and is available for the Mac now. Sorry, no Windows. The update is free to registered owners. You can find more information on the product at the Critters web site.


[3:30 PM] The Apple Stock Watch: Holy DogCow, AAPL closes up 14.3% to 73 1/16!
by Wes George

Investors responded euphorically to Apple's earnings announcement (see The Mac Observer's full coverage). Volume was over 3 times normal as more than 16.8 million shares traded for a one day 14.3 % gain. Apple closed at 73 1/16, a gain of 8 1/4.

In the broader markets the advance-decline line continued down despite the Dow and the Nasdaq scoring marginal gains after a volatile day. The NYSE recorded only 21 new highs versus 264 new 52-week lows. Earlier in the day the Dow was down 100 points. The volume was strong while the market internals remained poor.

The Dow closed up 54.45 to 10286.6 The Nasdaq close up 5.57 point to 2806.84

Strong U.S. retail sales data helped fuel another day of worries that the Fed will increase interest rates in November.

The 30-year bond ended with a 6.32% yield, the highest since October of 1997, not a happy sign for stocks.

Tomorrow morning Wall Street's direction will come largely from the Producer Price Index to be announced at 8:30 am EDT. The PPI is a measure of wholesale price levels. Higher wholesale prices indicate inflation, and this is an indicator closely watched by the Federal Reserve.

The Phildelphia Semiconductor Index (SOX) rebound over 2% today lead by Intel and Altera. Boeing and General Motors both beat earnings estimates handily.

Mac related companies Symantec, Adobe, IBM, Motorola and Macromedia all closed up in sympathy with Apple's big surge.

Apple's competition Dell, Compaq and Hewlett Packard slipped down slightly while Gateway rose over 5% on news that it will offer and all-in-one PC designed to emulate the iMac's success.Intel also joined the winner's circle, while Microsoft found themselves solidly in the loser's circle.

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.


[Analysis] An Embarrassment of Riches, A Brief Analysis of Apple's Earnings Report
by Wes George

Apple's conference call yesterday with analysts was the most bizarre earnings report I've ever heard. In essence, Fred Anderson said Apple has almost as many back orders in the first two weeks of this quarter for Macintosh systems than were actually delivered last quarter. 400,000 of those backlogged systems were left over from last quarter, representing an incredible $700 million in unrealized revenue. Another 250,000 unfilled orders represent the first week of the new iMac's debut, and aren't even counted into this figure!

This is very positive news only because of Apple's privileged position among computer vendors. If Apple were Dell, the $700 million in unrealized revenue would leak away as prospective buyers wandered off to buy a PC from one of Dell's dozen or so competitors. Instead, for Apple, backlogs merely mean higher margins because there is no downward pricing pressure. Gross margins were 28.7% last quarter increasing from the June quarter by about 1%, while the rest of the PC vendors have endured gross margin erosion.

Apple can afford the luxury of asking its customers to queue up quietly and wait. The iMac DV, the iBook, and the G4 have no direct competition in a very tangible way. There are no clone vendors to mop up the impatience. Moreover, the difference between an Apple designed system and a Wintel box is now greater than ever. With the expected debut of OS X next year, the divergence in quality will only increase.

Nevertheless, one would hope the immense backlog of orders represents an anomaly. $700 million languishing as unrealized revenue is no way to do business in the long run. Mr. Anderson assured analysts this situation is a one-time miscalculation due to a confluence of events largely beyond Apple's control. A combination of G4 production problems at Motorola, slower than anticipated ramp up of iBook production, an earthquake, and the introduction of five new products all conspired to the detriment of Apple's ability to deliver in a big way.

Mr. Anderson didn't mention Apple's corporate culture has tolerated backlogs as a modus operandi for a least a decade. Although today's backlog is many times larger than usual by historical standards. Apple needs to bring supply versus demand forecasts into line with reality.

One could argue that Apple's huge backlog, if it continues, is a sign of arrogance, especially in light of the way they intend to resolve the G4 shortage by lowering MHz ratings while maintaining the earlier G4 price points. This is a tactic one might expect from a monopoly like Microsoft, not a company in a desperate battle for market share.

But let's be fair, the G4 MHz problem is a short term Motorola induced situation and the solution seems to be at hand for the next year. IBM will begin production of the G4 processor in 2000 and Apple will become, at long last, dual sourced for this pivotal component.

On the other hand, the backlog Apple carries into this quarter, as Maria Bartolomo said this morning on CNBC is "an embarrassment of riches." Investors have to be cheered that demand for Apple's products are exceeding everyone's--but perhaps Steve Job's--imagination. Mr. Anderson has assured analysts that the backlog will be mopped up by November.

That's really the big, if short term, question: Can Apple meet the massive demand for its products during the Christmas season? Has Apple taken into consideration the predictions that this Y2K Christmas is likely to see a very high percentage of technology related purchases?

If the new iMacs continue to sell at even 25 percent of the pace they set during their first week of introduction, Apple can expect to sell at least 700,000 iMacs by Christmas. Add that to a conservatively estimated 200,000 or so G4 sales and perhaps 700,000 iBooks and you have a record breaking quarter for Apple of about 1.6 million units sold! And that's not even considering Power Books. Average units sold for the last 7 quarters has been less than 700,000 units per quarter. Again, the question is, can Apple meet the demand for it products?

Perhaps the most long term bullish news for Apple has been apparent for a while now. Apple is presently entering an entirely new product cycle on, not just one, but three new computer families. This will be the first quarter that all three (iMac DV, iBook and G4) will ramp up to full production. Judging from the first generation iMac, all of these new products have a life cycle of at least a year. The forecast for Apple's bottom line over the next five quarter is very strong, even if Apple decides to rest on its laurels, which isn't likely with Steve Jobs at the helm. For Steve this is merely a foundation to build on.

[Column] Ask Dave - USB Tips, Faster Internet, And MacOS 9

[1:30 PM] Apple Reportedly Reversing Decision To Cancel Existing G4 Orders

Reports are filtering in that Apple may have reversed its decision to cancel existing G4 orders and asking customers to reorder at what amounts to the new higher prices. Apple had canceled these orders after announcing a revamped G4 product line that reflected G4 availability from Motorola and higher RAM prices. Reports are now coming in from Observers that say Apple has rescinded this decision.

Apple does not yet have an official comment on this development.


[11:45 AM] Tape Helps Developers Hold MacOS 9 Apps Together

Public Access Software has released a software development assistant application, Tape. Tape bundles groups of files into a "package" designation for use under OS 9, with OS X compatibility promised. According to Public Access:

Tape is a new Mac OS application that will allow software developers to quickly and easily create application "packages" for use on Mac OS 9.0. Using simple Drag 'n' Drop techniques anyone can turn a folder of related files into an application package for use under Mac OS 9 and eventually Mac OS X.

Tape handles the creation of a relative alias file pointing to the "main" file in the package as well as correctly sets the folder's Finder Info flags to be recognized as a package.

Also to be made available is the "Box Cutter" utility which can remove the package setting from any appropriate folder independent of Tape or Mac OS 9.

Tape is available as shareware for US$10. You can find more information at the Public Access web site.

Public Access Software

[11:45 AM] Auto-Text Clean Up Tool For Eudora Expands Capabilities

Selznick Scientific Software has upgraded the e-mail helper application, SmartWrap, to version 1.2. The SmartWrap Eudora Plug-in helps clean and format e-mail text in the Eudora e-mail application. Version 1.2 adds the SmartWrap capability to the clipboard. According to Selznick Scientific:

The original "SmartWrap Eudora Plug-in" has been totally revamped to detect paragraphs and lists in even the worst messages, working above and beyond Eudora's built in wrapping technology. The same SmartWrap technology now exists in a brand-new "SmartWrap the Clipboard" application that will detect and wrap paragraphs in text you've copied to the clipboard from just about anywhere, including your web browser.

SmartWrap analyzes hard-to-read text and re-wraps it perfectly by removing all unnecessary line breaks, quote characters, and excess formatting! SmartWrap is NOT a blind search and replace tool. SmartWrap performs extensive analysis and statistics to determine the best way to wrap your text naturally within your document's window, unhindered by excess formatting.

The Eudora Plug-in is perfect for SmartWrapping text of incoming or outgoing messages! The SmartWrap Plug-in can also be added to the Eudora Toolbar! (TIP: command-click in the Eudora toolbar and select the SmartWrap menu item. A button for SmartWrap will appear in the toolbar.)

Copy text from your web browser or word processor, double-click on SmartWrap the Clipboard, and your copied text will be SmartWrapped! Push "Copy" if you like what you see, push "Quit" if you don't.

SmartWrap is available for US$15. The upgrade is free for registered users of SmartWrap. You can find more information at the Selznick Scientific web site.

Selznick Scientific Software

[11:10 AM] Complete Transcript Of 4th Quarter Conference Call

Apple's Fourth Quarter Conference Call with Analysts

This article is a transcript of Apple's conference call conducted by Fred Anderson, Apple Computer's Chief Financial Officer, late yesterday afternoon. It's a rare, in-depth view Apple only provides professional analysts, the financial press and now--thanks to the Internet--you. See the Apple press release for the consolidated balance sheets.

Remember, that except for the historical information contained herein, the statements below are forward-looking and involve risks and uncertainties.

The conference call began with a review of the financial numbers from the press release. Then, an Apple employee introduced Mr. Anderson. Thus begins our transcription.

Mr. Anderson: Thank you Nancy, as our press release indicates, income before non-recurring items was $90 million, slightly above the earnings estimate of $75 to $85 million, announced on September 20th.

We shipped 772,000 units (last quarter) representing a 7% decline from the year ago quarter. iMacs accounted for 58% of all units shipped, followed by PowerMac systems at 28%. Power Books represented 13% of units. iBooks and servers represented less than 1% each.

As I forewarned you during last quarter's conference call, the September quarter proved to be a period of significant product transition. Demand for all our new products has been incredibly strong. We exited the September quarter with an extraordinary large backlog of over 400,000 Macintosh systems, representing over $700 million in unrealized revenue.

The first new product was the iBook introduced at MacWorld on July 21st. As expected the availability of the iBook was limited during the quarter, a situation that was exacerbated by a slower than anticipated manufacturing ramp, and the earthquake in Taiwan which I will discuss later. We received orders for over 200,000 iBooks during the quarter but were able to ship only 6,000 units.

The second new product was the G4 professional desktop introduced at Seybold on August 31st. Customer reaction and bookings have been very strong. However, as we disclosed on Sept. 20th, Motorola was unable to manufacture the planned volume of microprocessors during the quarter. Despite receiving orders for over 150,000 G4 systems during the quarter, we were able to ship only 64,000 G4 units, which was far short of our plan.

In order to better match G4 demand with chip availability from Motorola, Apple today announced that it has reconfigured the processor speeds of Power Mac G4. The G4 offering will now include 350 MHz, 400 MHz, 450 MHz configuration. The 500 MHz G4 will not be available till the first calendar quarter of next year.

The third product transition was the new iMac family, which we announced and began shipping last week. We have received orders for over 250,000 in the first week since its announcement. As expected our product transition led to a reduction in the sales value of ending channel inventory which were down 30% from the end of the June quarter.

Gross margins of 28.7% were far better than expected for a number of reasons. First and most significantly, iMac and Power Mac G3 gross margins improved from last quarter due to stable pricing and lower manufacturing costs. Secondly, we had a higher mix of higher margin software sales in the quarter, and, thirdly, warranty costs were lower than anticipated. A reflection of the improving quality of our products. Average selling prices remained stable during the quarter at $1,682.

As for expenses, operating expenses were relatively flat at $317 million during the quarter. Head count increased to 9,736 in the quarter, up from 8,853 in the June quarter. The increase was primarily due to an increase in temporary workers hired to support the ramp of our new products.

As mentioned in the press release, Apple recognized an after-tax gain of $37 million from the sale of 3 million of our shares of ARM holdings. This contributed 21 cents to diluted earnings per share. We still hold 16 million shares of ARM that is currently worth in excess of $300 million. Apple has also recognized an after-tax restructuring charge during the quarter to operations of 16 million for cancellation charges related to previously out-sourced services, and a previously discontinued business. This reduced diluted earnings per share by $0.09 cents.

In terms of a balance sheet, we finished the quarter with cash and short term investments of over $3.2 billion dollars, and net cash of over $2.9 billion. Cash flow from operation during the quarter was $218 million. We ended the quarter with $20 million, or two days of inventory. Day sales outstanding decreased to 46 compared to 52 days at the end of June.

During the quarter we repurchased 1.25 million shares of AAPL stock at an average price of $60. Of the original $500 million authorized for repurchase, $425 million remain as of the end of the quarter.

We have had numerous questions about the impact of the Taiwan earthquake on our business. So I would like to provide you with a brief update. There was no structural damage to any of our production facilities, all of which are now fully operational. We lost power for the last week of the quarter, and power outages and rationing continued to occur for the two weeks following the end of the quarter. We lost one week of production on both Power Books and iBooks during the last week of the September quarter. Some component supplies were also impacted. But we believe this situation will be resolved well before the end of the quarter.

Looking ahead for the next three months, the December quarter will be the first quarter where all four product families will be shipping in volume for the entire quarter. We expect units and revenues to be up significantly from the prior and year ago quarter.

We expect to be able to catch up with the backlog on the G4 desktop, but expect to be supply constrained on the iBook during the quarter. At this point we do not expect the Taiwan earthquake to have a material impact on our planned revenues for the quarter.

For gross margins, we expect the December quarter to be sequentially down due to substantial higher memory prices and a mixed shift towards iMacs and iBooks, which have lower gross margins than our professional products. We expect operating expenses to increase significantly as we invest in advertising and other promotional activities in support of our new product line-up, and the consumer holiday buying season.

Also driving the increase in operating expense is the fact that Apple's fiscal first quarter will be a 14 week quarter. Every six years we have to add one week to our first fiscal quarter to synchronize with the calendar. For the December quarter we are targeting operating expenses at about 18.5% of revenue. And lastly we expect the tax rate to move up to approximately 25%.

Apple also announced today that IBM began manufacturing Power PC G4 processor chips beginning in the first half of calendar year 2000 providing Apple with a second supplier for the G4 Power PC processor.

With that I would like to open the call to questions from analysts.

(Questions have been paraphrased, and not all were transcribed.)

Question: Why did inventory go up to two days versus the 6 hours in last quarter?

Fred: (laughing) Well, I would attribute it to a combination of the product transition and the Taiwan earthquake.

Question: On the G4 production from IBM, is that going to ramp up quickly or slowly, and how much of your G4 supply do you anticipate ultimately getting from IBM?

Fred: No, I really can't shed anymore light on that than what I have given you. Which is to say, again, that we expect IBM to ramp up and to begin to producing the G4 processor for Apple sometime during the first half of the calendar year, and at that point we will be dual-sourced from both Motorola and IBM. I really can't speculate on what the split might be between the two.

Question: Does the IBM agreement extend to other products? Is it a multi-year agreement?

Fred: The agreement was between IBM and Motorola, and Apple is not a party to the agreement. And I'm really not at…first of all I don't know the details of their agreement, and secondly if I were it's confidential between the two companies and I am not at liberty to comment.

Question: Can you give us more insight into your gross margins for this quarter, what kind of a step down are you expecting?

Fred: Sure, first let me give you again some of the qualitative factors. The positive would be that we expect significant revenues from Mac OS 9 upgrades, which as you know is being introduced this month. So that's a positive for gross margins because the OS upgrades carry very high gross margins. That's offset by a couple of factors, which I already mentioned. One is because of the holiday season and the huge backlog we currently have of both iMacs and iBooks. We expect a higher mix of those consumer products, which have lower gross margins. Secondly, the whole industry is going to be hit by much higher memory prices this quarter. We anticipate that you would get demand and supply more in equilibrium as we enter the next calendar year, but this quarter is going to be really tight and we have been conservative and factored in significant price increases in memory. Those are the three most significant factors I think will change compared to this last quarter. As to gross margins, which were above 28%, I'm not going to forecast it, but I think it could be down one to two points from the prior quarter, but it's really hard to predict. I don't think anyone sitting here can predict how much memory prices are going to go up.

Question: Is memory the primary factor in gross margin declines then?

Fred: It's a significant factor, I would say that mix shift down to consumer products is also a significant factor.

Question: I read on the web that OS X might not ship on time, and, secondly, on the reconfiguration of the G4 is the only thing different in the new ones the speed of the processors? In other words, will Sawtooth be shipping with the 450 MHz and the 400mhz?

Fred: Let me take the G4 question first. Yes, your assumption is right, the prior three configurations remain exactly the same, except you'll have 50 MHz lower in the processor for each of those configurations. As to Mac OS X, to be honest with you, we are focused right now on Mac OS 9. We think its an incredible upgrade to the current operating system with 50 new features and Sherlock II the meta search engine. It has incredible value, so we look forward to selling a lot of those this quarter. I'm not aware of any schedule delays on Mac OS X, but I have to admit that's not something I'm spending a lot of time on right now.

Question: It looks like the price point of the new G4 configurations are the same as the old G4 models. Is that correct?

Fred: That is correct

Question: Well, if I got a 450 MHz machine at the old price, are you guys going to send me a bill? I would have expected at least a token price reduction because you're doing a take away on consumers.

Fred: Let me try to answer that very directly. You're correct that there is a 50 MHz lower processor. On the other hand, DRAM prices have shot through the roof, as I know you know. So we're not getting a windfall here, guys, because of the big increases in memory prices.

Question: When you look to next year's growth, what do you see? Secondly, what type of tax base can we expect next year and beyond?

Fred: We set a target in terms of unit growth rates for fiscal year 2000. I'm not going to get into quarter or first half. Our unit growth rate targets, not forecasts, but targets, are 35 to 40%, and revenue is in the 20 to 25% range on year over year basis for fiscal year 2000.

Tax rate is targeted at 25%. In 2001, to be conservative, I would use a 33% fully taxed rate. I think it will between 30 to 33% depending how effective our tax planning is.

Question: How do you absorb the higher DRAM prices?

Fred: I think the reaction of all the personal computer vendors, including Apple, is you try to offset it with lower component prices in other areas. Or you raise your prices, or you take it out of your gross margins and naturally we are trying hard to neutralize it by being aggressive in negotiating lower costs in other areas that aren't in such short supply.

Question: Can you tell us how much back order Apple had at this time last year, and what are the statistics on the type of users that are buying the iMac now?

Fred: We haven't been recording backlog publicly for the last couple of years because, quite frankly, it was so inconsequential that we didn't think that it was meaningful. I don't have in front of me what the backlog was. But I'll tell you that in most recent quarters it's been running somewhere between $100 and $200 million, so what we end with was an abnormally high backlog which has only increased since the close of the quarter with the announcement of the new iMac. Of course, we didn't have any of those in backlog and then we received 250,000 orders for the new iMac since we closed the quarter. So, in any event, if I did have it in front of me, I think it would say that it was certainly at least $500 million higher than the 4th quarter of the prior year.

In terms of the iMac, we don't have any recently update information on the source of customers, but it has been running about a third new customers, about 10% Wintel customers. Those two total about 45% plus, and about 55% are existing Mac customers, and I don't think that has fundamentally changed. As we do the next update I think it will be close to the same.

Question: Is Apple going to announce an ISP strategy?

Fred: I expect that Apple will have something to say in this area in a few months.

Newer Technology

[9:00 AM] Newer Rolls OUt 500 MHz G3 Upgrade, Drops Prices Across Product Line

Newer Technology has announced a 500Mhz G3 upgrade. Along with the new upgrade, price cuts across the entire Newer Technology G3 line were also announced. G4 upgrade availability has also been updated. According to Newer Technology:

The new 500MHz G3 processor from IBM uses a 10X bus multiple which allows Power Macs to be upgraded to 500MHz. (The 10X bus multiple multiplied by the maximum stock bus speed of 50MHz gives a top CPU clock speed of 500MHz.) The 500MHz G3 processor has taken over the high end of the MAXpowr G3 product line, replacing the 466MHz. The 500MHz MAXpowr G3 processor is designed for the 7300-9600 as well as UMAX and Power Computing models. The MAXpowr G3-G3 500MHz upgrade is designed for the beige and blue/white Power Mac G3 systems. Both processor upgrade products simply replace the stock processor.

The MAXpowr G4 400MHz upgrade for the blue/white Power Mac G3s will begin shipping in late November.

Product Was New Price Decrease
MAXpowr G3 PDS 6100 240-266MHz $349 $299 -$50
MAXpowr G3 PDS 71/81 266-300MHz $549 $449 -$100
for Power Mac 7100 and 8100
MAXpowr G3 300/1MB/200 $449 $399 -$50
MAXpowr G3 400/1MB/200 $649 $549 -$100
MAXpowr G3 500 $949
MAXpowr G3-G3 400/1MB/200 $599 $499 -$100
MAXpowr G3-G3 500 $899
for beige and blue/white Power Mac G3s
MAXpowr G3 L2 300/512/200 $399 $349 -$50
MAXpowr G3 L2 300/1MB/200 $459 $399 -$60
for: Power Mac 4400, 4400 DOS, 7220 (international), 5400, 5500, 6400,
6500; Performa 5400, 5410, 5420, 5430, 5440, 6360, 6400, 6410, 6420; UMAX
C-500, C-600; Power Computing PowerBase (all); all Motorola StarMax 3000,
4000, 5000, 5500; APS M*Power series (all).

The introduction of the 500MHz G3 processor, with a MacBench 5 processor test score of 1604, has replaced the 466MHz G3 upgrades as the top performance upgrade. The MAXpowr products below have been discontinued to better match customer demand. The following processor upgrades will no longer be produced:

240-266MHz and 333-400MHz MAXpowr G3 PDS 71/81
populated MAXpowr G3-CC (ZIF carrier cards)
400MHz MAXpowr G3-L2
466MHz MAXpowr G3 (replaced by 500MHz G3)
466MHz MAXpowr G3-G3 (replaced by 500MHz G3)

These specific products may still be in stock and interested customers are encouraged to shop Newer Technology resellers to locate any remaining inventory. Customers are encouraged to review the MAXpowr G3 processor upgrade "matrix" on the web site for a complete overview of all Newer Technology upgrade options.

Additional product price changes include a drop of $100 to an estimated street price of $149 for the FireWire 2 Go CardBus FireWire adapter for the PowerBook G3 Series computers. FireWire 2 Go is being used by digital photographers who prefer the PowerBook G3 as a digital image capture and DV video editing station.

The MAXpowr G4 400MHz upgrade for the blue/white Power Mac G3s will begin shipping in late November for $799.

You can find more information at the Newer Technology web site.

Newer Technology

[9:00 AM] Conflict Catcher Updated And Ready For MacOS 9

Casady & Greene have updated the must-have utility, Conflict Catcher, to version 8.0.6. This latest release brings OS 9 compatibility, along with minor bug fixes. According to Casady & Greene:

Casady & Greene, Inc. is pleased to announce today the release of Conflict Catcher(TM) 8.0.6, an update to the award winning utility. This new version is compatible with Apple's recently announced Mac OS 9 operating system, and is available as a free download.

Among the changes to Conflict Catcher 8 v8.0.6 is a revised reference library which now includes file descriptions for more than 4750 files, including file descriptions specific to OS 9. This new version also includes new sets and links for Mac OS 9 and fixes a handful of minor bugs.

There are a number of pricing and availability options for Conflict Catcher. An electronic download version is available for US$69.95, and a CD version is available for US$79.95. Also, owners of pervious versions of Conflict Catcher can upgrade to the newest version for US$49.95. Version 8.0.6 is free for registered users of version 8.x. You can find more information at the Casady & Greene web site.

Casady & Greene

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