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MacEdition Pro News : October 1, 2002: Recalled basic Gimps hunt contacts

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Safety recall

Owners of the Kodak DC5000 digital camera, listen up, because that model has been recalled by the manufacturer.

Kodak, in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, is voluntarily recalling the DC5000 Zoom Digital Cameras due to a possible electrical shock hazard.

Consumers should stop using these cameras and contact Kodak immediately for a free inspection and repair. This recall affects the DC5000 camera only.

Kodak states it wishes to inspect all DC5000 cameras and repair those which have the defect. The camera maker will pay the freight on shipping the camera to the inspection points. Kodak has posted both a FAQ on the recall and the registration form to begin shipping the camera back to Kodak.

Back to basics

Mac programmers looking for some back doors to allow their new programs to connect to older serial outputs or use other technologies abandoned by Apple might want to check out Staz Software’s newly released FutureBASIC 7.

Serial communications were annihilated by Apple with Mac OS X. But STAZ Software has been able to revive its serial routines so that serial devices can now be accessed through FutureBASIC code for any version of the System software from 7.6 to 10.2. Also on the list of items killed by Mac OS X and brought back to life by FutureBASIC are toolbox routines like CreateResFile and OpenRFPerm. Other novel routines simplify things like adding or replacing a resource in any file and getting a full path name. And everything works seamlessly from 68K to Carbon.

Not content to shore up the broken links of the past, Staz has also updated the IDE for compatibility with Jaguar (Mac OS X 10.2) and provided hooks for up to 256 simultaneous Unix channels while allowing for the creation of AppleScripts on the fly or allowing programmer access to a precompiled collection of scripts.

Release 7 of FutureBASIC also ships with a new book – Switching to FutureBASIC – which gets existing programmers up to speed with the program’s specific syntax, Appearance Manager compliance, Carbon programming and Mac OS X coding.

FutureBASIC carries a US$169 price tag for a single copy. Various upgrade packages are available from the company’s Web site or by calling 1-800-348-2623.

When you just gotta connect

It’s no big secret that Apple employed the Unix standard CUPS printing technology (the magic glue which allows a Unix machine to connect to most Windows printers) in the new version of Mac OS X. However, for those not really comfortable with invoking the command line mojo to make this magic happen, getting hooked up has been something of a deep descent into the guts of the OS where GUI guys fear to go.

At least until the Gimp-Print guys came along. The open-source folks working on Gimp-Print have created a user-friendly installer which opens the window for Mac users to access those printers used by the other 95 percent of the computing pubi–err, public (damn typos).

The FAQ is posted at the Gimp-Print site. And please remember: no Jaguar, no joy.

And in other news

Parker Software Development put the finishing touches on its new version of NewsHunter by giving it better database support while making the OS X program smaller in terms of memory space.

Other improvements in the new 2.0.5 version include:

Improved Friend Filters: The Friend Filter mechanism no longer requires the user to turn off all other filters in order to activate a Friend Filter.

Default Folder Preferences: allows users to alter the location of certain folders that NewsHunter uses to download and process files. For example, NewsHunter can be configured to save decoded files to a location chosen by the user instead of the default location which inside the NewsHunter application folder.

LoadFile / AnalyzeFile Errors Eliminated: Occasionally NewsHunter would throw an error when it was unable to locate a cached file for decoding. This has been fixed.

NewsHunter can be downloaded from Parker’s site. The US$49.95 shareware program is fully functional and will not expire, although non-registered users should not be surprised to see a nag screen every once in a while. (Hey, budding software tycoons need to eat too, ya know.)

Some stuff just wants to be free

Those Mac users looking to stuff a cross-platform address book app down the throats of their IS department should take a long hard look at Address Office from Centromedia.

The Italian entity has just released a new version of the program which allows users to manage addresses, phone numbers, URLs, AIM, ICQ and email addresses. The program’s main features include:

  • Intelligent Record ordering
  • Multiplatform (Macintosh and Windows)
  • Multilingual (English, German, French, Spanish, Italian)
  • Mailinglist generator
  • Microsoft Entourage, Outlook, FaxSTF X compatibility
  • eCard / vCard compatibility
  • Statistics
  • Calendar
  • Euro Converter
  • Software Update Engine
  • Compatible with EU and USA laws for privacy agreement
  • Expanding possibilities with Plug-Ins, Startup and Shutdown items.
  • Automated for digital and analog addresses
  • Autodial with country-code
  • Import/Export

Centromedia is willing to customize the about/first/splash screen for any corporation willing to use the product. Download Address Office: Mac OS X, Mac Classic, Windows.

Looking for old ProNews segments? Check out our index at http://old.macedition.com/news/. Do you have news releases or tidbits of interest to the Macintosh professional? Send them to pronewsnotes@macedition.com.

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