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MacEdition Extra! January 8, 2001

by MacEdition Staff (feedback)

Sometimes things wash over the transom and there’s not really a good place to put it. That’s why there’s Extra!

Such is the latest from our own Bahamut (of Bahamut’s Lair fame). Only slightly edited, here’s what he says is on tap this week:

On Mercury

Dubbed the PowerBook G4, this thin titanium beastie is only about one inch thick (as well as 13.4" wide and 9.5" deep – mercifully not as deep as contemporary ’Books, but wider!) and tipping the scales at barely more than five pounds, with a 15.2-inch display. A full inch more! There ought to be room for 1 gigabyte of RAM and a 30-gigabyte hard drive. The speed will top out at 500MHz, but the G4, it will be claimed, will top Pentium III notebooks by some 30%. Oddly, there are claims that Mercury will have 4MB/second infrared (why? does anyone use this?) and incredibly enough, the 15.2-inch display will have a resolution of up to 1152 x 768. Wowzers, will that fit in my Jack Spade bag?

On desktops

The desktops will indeed head up to 733MHz. Dual processors will be available but only up to 533MHz. News on this front is a 133MHz system bus and up to 1.5GB of PC133 SDRAM. Drives will range from 30GB to 72GB Ultra160 SCSI running at 10,000 RPM. Ow – seems fast. But SCSI? Surely we’d seen the last of that beastie.

These will be buildable with either optional DVD-R or CD-RW drives. Four full-length PCI slots will finally make the video stars happy. An ATI RAGE 128 Pro card with 16MB SDRAM, NVIDIA GeForce2 MX with 32MB SDRAM AGP or optional ATI Radeon with 32MB of DDR RAM will make gamers feel a little less crabby.

On all the rest

Expect Mac OS 9.1 there (my earlier predictions about the Grinch aside) and ... iMusic and iAnimate, the latter the “best thing Apple’s ever done.” Kids will now have the capacity to make highly effective animated movies with remarkably little effort. An OS X demo should show some “new features” that demonstrate that Steve’s listening to Jolene Graphics Professional (JGP) and to the Monks’ manifesto. Expect anything, from a more useful Apple menu to just possibly a vertical dock.

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