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MacEdition Pro News : January 30, 2003: Hubzilla attacks US, pictures in 11 x 44

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Oh, no! There goes San Diego!

OK, so I’ll apologize right now to those Blue Oyster Cult fans who will recognize an outright steal of a line from one of the band’s few Top 40 hits. But with this little bit of news, who could resist that headline?

FireWire Depot announced it will bring the Japanese B-movie-inspired Hubzilla FireWire hub to the shores of the United States.

While our Asian friends probably have caught a glimpse of the four-port hub – modeled in the likeness of Godzilla – at trade shows in the Far East over the past year, the FireDINO hasn’t been to the new world yet. Hey, for US$74.50, you get both a functional computing device and a good giggle. Who could beat a deal like that?

In a more serious vein, FireWire Depot also announced an array of more conventional FireWire hard drive enclosures that will be on the market in coming days.

The new enclosures start with a 2.5-inch eDrive for laptop users which is available in FireWire-only and FireWire/USB 2.0 models. The company has also revamped its 3.5-inch IceCube and launched a new MantaRay desktop model, both of which will accommodate the new large-capacity ATA hard drives rolling out from Maxtor and Western Digital. The final item in FireWire Depot’s drive case line up is a 5.25-inch enclosure, dubbed HotButter, which will be available in FireWire-only and FireWire/USB 2.0 models.

FireWire Depot also said it intends to have a full range of FireWire 800 products ready to go this spring.

Cranking out the color

Konica Business Technologies has rolled out a couple of new color printers that are bound to be attractive to anyone who needs a unit that can crank out full-bleed, large-format prints at a blistering pace.

Konica’s new 7820 printer uses LED (light-emitting diode) technology and will output at 20 pages per minute in color (24 ppm in grayscale), while its bigger brother – the 7830 – cranks out color at 30 ppm (37 ppm grayscale). Both printers output at up to 1200 dpi and will handle up to 110-lb. media as large as 12 inches (about 30cm) by 47.25 inches (about 1.3m), with a duty cycle of 80,000 and 120,000 copies per month, respectively.

“Konica’s introduction of the faster and more flexible 7820 and 7830 systems strengthens our position in the rapidly evolving color printing market, and at the same time further defines our leadership in providing solutions to a diverse customer base, from large print shops to the small office,” said William H. Brewster, vice president, marketing, Konica Business Technologies, Inc. “Competitive price points, coupled with superior image quality and substantial standard features like duplexing and industry-leading image resolution, make these machines strong contenders in a growing marketplace.”

The printers come standard with a 10/100BaseT interface, support for Adobe PostScript and Apple’s ColorSync, and are bundled with job accounting and remote management software. Duplexing and multi-tray options are available for both printers.

Pricing for the 7820 starts at US$3,999 and climbs to $6,499 for a fully decked-out unit. The 7830 starts with a retail price of $6,599 and climbs to $8,199.

Visually applied

Mac developers can shift their tempo to a Tango, now that an Australian programming tool builder has brought its visual development environment to Mac OS X.

With Enterprise Pty Ltd. has released Witango 5, the company’s first serious rewrite of the Tango 2000 code it bought from Pervasive Software. Witango is also the company’s first commercial effort in bringing the visual rapid Web development program to the Mac platform.

With Enterprise notes the new features of Witango:

  • Updated threading model: The application server now runs in full preemptive multitasking mode.
  • Mail integration: Witango now supports POP3, IMAP4 and SMTP as well as international character sets, MIME encoding, file attachments and custom headers.
  • XML Web services: The application server’s client interface has been exposed, providing C++ and Java interfaces that can support SOAP, XML-RPC and other direct connections.
  • Enhanced debugging facilities: In particular, Witango 5 exposes the full meta stack trace, which allows developers to quickly find errors in nested tags.
  • Expanded error reporting options: Developers have more control over error messages and help text.
  • Optimized variable handling: This improves application performance and encourages developers to assign a type to their variables. This will assist them in migrating their applications to future releases in the Witango product family, including the forthcoming J2EE compiler.

The program has standard hooks into ODBC databases, natively supports Oracle’s Call Interface (OCI) and outputs files in XML which can be executed on the company’s server product - which can be hosted on any common server OS. With Enterprise also says it will soon release a server product that will allow developers to hook into FileMaker Pro databases.

Witango will carry a price tag of AU$1098 (US$593) and a 30-day evaluation copy can be obtained from its site.

Put it on my tab

Net surfers who eschewed Apple’s Safari because it doesn’t have tabs can now give the zippy little browser a whirl without stepping out of their comfort zone.

Eelee has released the Safari add-on as a means of better organizing bookmarks through the use of a launcher bar parked in the uppermost right-hand corner of the user’s screen.

The main functionality of SafariTabs allows users to open Safari’s windows from grouped bookmarks in SafariTabs.

SafariTabs users also have the following options to manage their bookmarks:

  • drag & drop bookmarks from Safari to SafariTabs
  • create new bookmarks categories
  • add new bookmarks in the defined categories
  • modify the existing bookmarks

SafariTabs was conceived for the Safari user who wants a more comfortable experience.

SafariTabs is a US$15 shareware program which can be downloaded from Eelee’s Web site.

Mac OS X Finder utility hits beta

Publicspace has issued a public beta of its upcoming A Better Finder Select 3.0, a utility which lets the user filter his or her file searches by using different criteria.

The new version of the US$10 shareware utility has been rewritten for Mac OS X using Apple’s Cocoa programming framework. The contextual menu plugin includes support for wildcard searches, regular expression filename matching and drag-and-drop support.

The new version of the program can be found on Publicspace’s product page.

Your ProNews update

Alexander Wilson Studios has updated AudioBookMaker, giving the newest version of the text-to-audio converter a preview function, a large-file warning and improving the program’s stability. The update can be obtained from the studio’s Web site.

Trinfinity Software has updated Time Track, giving the program a new auto-tracking feature which automatically records the amount of time a user spends in any application. Trinfinity also added AppleScript support and completed support for manipulation of the program from Mac OS 9’s control strip. The update can be picked up from Trinfinity’s site.

Zik Software has issued a new beta of its iLink product, a universal bookmarking utility. The latest build adds Safari support, scroll-wheel support and the ability to assign a default browser for each URL bookmarked. The new version of iLink can be downloaded from Zik’s product page.

MacChampion has released an update to Alepin, its feature-rich Mac OS X Notepad replacement. The new version adds the ability to import copy from the Classic Notepad, Stickies X or from folders, and a multipage view the user can scroll through. The updated version of the US$10 shareware program can be found on the MacChampion site.

Max Programming has updated eMail Extractor, a program which extracts email addresses from a variety of files. The update adds an enhanced rules editor, and improves email validation and line validation filters. The free update can be downloaded from the company’s product pages for the Mac OS X and Mac Classic variants.

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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