The MacCast » 2006 » November

Who cares if it’s true, lets Digg it!

Written by: Adam Christianson

Categories: Editorial

Seems like the best way to get publicity (and hits) for your web site these days is to report on a highly questionable story with no supporting evidence or facts, tack on a Digg worthy headline about Apple selling porn to minors and sit back as the swarm attacks the honey pot. The original report appears on The Consumerist, a consumer watch dog blog, and as of this writing the 2 sentence post titled, “Apple Sells “Refreshed” Laptop Filled With Porn To 11 Year Old Girl” has garnered close to 1300 Diggs and is rising fast. Now to be fair the post does also include a transcript of a chat with a friend of the owner of the new, porn laden, MacBook. In the transcript the friend says the laptop was sold with a “desktop full of JPGs” containing porn. Later in the same chat though, he admits that he doesn’t know how much porn, what type of porn and there is no evidence of the porn as the owner already restored the machine from the original system DVD. Now of course this is hardly definitive evidence that the story isn’t true, but come on. True or not, my point is not many Diggers will even bother to read that far into the story. Heck, I doubt they even click anything other the “Digg it” link.

Refreshed or Refurbished

Now another problem with this story is that while the headline on the Consumerist website clearly states it was a “refreshed” MacBook, most blogs picking up the story are reporting it as a “refurbished” model. The semantics are subtle but there is a big difference.
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MacCast 2006.11.29

Written by: Adam Christianson

Categories: Podcast

Download today’s show here! podcast-mini2.gif
MC20061129.mp3 [32.8MB 01:07:25 64kbps]

A podcast about all things Macintosh. For Mac geeks, by Mac geeks. Show 168. A plethora of Apple patents. Apple slip enables extra International iTunes Store content. UK to decriminalize FM transmitter use. Beatles on iTunes soon? Will we see an Apple tablet in 2007? New Mac holiday ads running. Proof of Concept Ad-ware finds its way into OS X. Security Update 2006-007 released and it’s loaded. Apple leaks iPod dock-able keyboard? Using a Zune with a Mac. Listener MacPro review. Next MacCast: Resolution Independence. The good, the bad, the really ugly. What’s an iMix? My thoughts on Walmart digital download service. The Studios still don’t “get it”

Promo for Billibub Baddings and the Case of the Singing Sword

New music, Wasted by Kevin Reeves. and support the MacCast.

A paperclip can be a wondrous thing. More times than I can remember, one of these has gotten me out of a tight spot.MacGyver (1985)

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I’m sorry, but this is going to be a bit of a rant…here goes.

Today’s article in the Financial Times titled Studios push anti-piracy rules on Apple reports that the studios are pushing for tighter copy-controls on Apple’s iTunes movie distributions. They write:

After months of discussion, a sticking point has emerged over the studios’ demand that Apple limit the number of devices that can use a film downloaded from iTunes.

And in the very next paragraph, states that the studios want to avoid piracy—demanding that Apple introduce a new distribution model for movies.
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Much has been made of the delays in getting Adobe’s mission critical pro apps, including Photoshop, onto the Intel platform, a gating item for many PowerPC Mac users considering the move to Intel. The other software category experiencing major delays for MacIntel ports, perhaps slightly less mainstream, is that of audio plug-ins and software synthesizers.

Audio plug-ins are programs that run inside a host program, such as Logic or Garageband, and in many cases in “standalone mode” as well. Without major contortions, it’s fairly impractical to run PPC plug-ins inside an Intel-based host program and nearly impossible to run both PPC and Intel plug-ins in the same host at the same time (see this discussion thread on BigBlueLounge for a workaround that involves some third-party software). Plug-ins typically generate audio (by making sounds), transform audio (e.g., by adding delay or compression), or both, and represent a substantial after-market for the big audio programs
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ToDo X Review

Written by: Chris Christensen

Categories: Reviews

ToDoSome tasks like getting a man to the moon are complicated and the systems needed to accomplish them are complicated. But some things, like keeping track of the things you need to do, are not complicated and the software you need to manage them should also be uncomplicated. ToDo from Omicron Software Systems is just that kind of software, uncomplicated.
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econlogo.pngEcon Technologies has released an update to version 2.2.1 of Portraits & Prints. The Portraits & Prints application allows you to use your digital photos to create personal calendars and cards. Over 50 free new templates are included in the update. There are new templates for Christmas, New Year, Calendars and Wanted Posters. There are over a hundred holiday templates available. You can download and install additional templates using the Portraits & Prints Template Manager.

Portraits & Prints will run natively on PowerPC (G3, G4, G5) and Intel-Macs running Panther or Tiger.

Existing users may update to the 2.2.1 version for free.

If you’d like to try Portraits & Prints for free for the rest of the year, request a full- functioning trial version from

The Portraits & Prints Standard Edition can be purchased for USD$30. The Portraits & Prints Pro Edition is priced at USD$50. A free demo version of the application is available if you’d like to try it out. Visit the Econ Technologies website ( to upgrade, purchase or download a free demo of the application.

Images of Piccadilly Coke+iTunes Billboard (Update)

Written by: Adam Christianson

Categories: Cool Stuff, Follow-up

Coke+iTunes PiccadillyI told you about the latest iTunes UK promotion involving a billboard in Piccadilly Circus on the latest MacCast. In case you missed it, Apple and Coke have partnered and placed a billboard at Piccadilly Circus in London. The billboard will occasionally display a code and when you use your UK cell phone to text the code to a special number you have the opportunity to win free songs on the UK iTunes store. Recently listener Brandon was able snap a few shots of the new signage (see Flickr links and YouTube video below) and the Coke+iTunes team handing out samples and vouchers for 5 free iTunes songs. According to Brandon if the billboard code word doesn’t change daily UK listeners can text “vibe” to 85100 up to 3 times for free music. Enjoy!

Update: Added the video of the billboard from listener Matt

Quick Tip: Pairing Your Apple Remote

Written by: Dale Mugford

Categories: Hints & Tips

appleremote.pngRecently my brother was in a lecture at his University, and had to get up and go to the bathroom. To feel comfortable leaving his Mac unattended, he uses iAlertU, a nice little security application from Slapping Turtle that turns your MacBook’s speakers, iSight camera, motion sensors and screen into an alarm system capable of locking up the computer. It even takes a snapshot of the would-be thief and makes a noisy racket with a car-alarm like response, even if it’s just moved, let alone used.

Once the program is open, all you have to do is hold down the Menu button on your Apple remote to activate/de-activate your alarm. Of course, you should have your MacBook (Pro) paired with your remote for this purpose, otherwise anyone could ‘disarm’ your security system easily.

And it was when he was ‘arming’ iAlertU that he discovered something, much to the chagrin of other MacBook users in the hall below him: almost no one pairs their remotes with their MacBooks. Imagine the look on those in the hall as Front Row mystically opened on their screens.
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MacCast 2006.11.22

Written by: Adam Christianson

Categories: Podcast

Download today’s show here! podcast-mini2.gif
MC20061122.mp3 [21.9MB 00:47:48 64kbps]

A podcast about all things Macintosh. For Mac geeks, by Mac geeks. Show 167. Target takes aim at Disney download plans. Apple files interchangeable interface patents. New iPod Shuffle commercial debuts. Apple may use scorching MacBooks to their advantage. French group exposes Safari OS X security hole. UK Piccadilly visitors can get free iTunes. Apple rumor roundup: iPhone, 15″ MacBooks, AMD Apple notebooks and Blu-ray added to Macs in February. KLM and Air France deny iPods on a plane. Hack to enable Front Row on MacPro. Other tips for silencing your Mac at startup. New features in iTunes 7 you might have missed. Question about viewing Mail attachment sizes. Outlook Calendar syncing not working in iTunes 7. Resurrect a dead iPod Shuffle, maybe?

New music, Life in the Stars by Berman

We don’t have to like each other. We’re family.Home for the Holidays (1995)

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Apple’s amazing Tokyo elevator (video) from iLounge

Written by: Adam Christianson

Categories: Cool Stuff

Apple Ginza Elevator

Normally I won’t cross-post from other blogs, but I just saw this post and the video below over on iLounge and it was too cool not to share.

“Found in the Apple Store in Tokyo, Japan’s Ginza district: as described more fully in this week’s Overseas Report, Apple has now outfitted the multi-story elevator entrances in Ginza with video pillars that explain the contents of each floor.”

Click here now get over to iLounge and chekout the video of this thing. You won’t be sorry.

(Via iLounge.)