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ATPM 10.07
July 2004


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by Robert Paul Leitao,

Welcome to the July edition of About This Particular Macintosh! This month the iPod takes a letter step back and makes way for the “Hpod,” HP’s branded iPod product manufactured by Apple but distributed by the PC and printer maker. This month our e-zine takes a step forward and brings you all the latest news for Macintosh users.

Put a Tiger in Your Mac

With apologies to the old Esso ad campaign, June’s World Wide Developers Conference was much about the next upgrade to Apple’s OS X operating system. Code-named Tiger, the new OS sports several new features including optimizations for the G5 chip and 64-bit applications. Tiger will ship in the early part of 2005, more than a year before the anticipated release of Longhorn, the long-overdue upgrade to Windows XP.

It seems a bit ironic that Apple didn’t stream the keynote address live over the Internet or by satellite. It’s ironic because other major announcements at the WWDC included the release of new Apple cinema displays. Why would Apple choose not to display the new displays the moment they were announced?

We’re in the Army Now

In late June the US Army announced the purchase of 1,566 G5 Macintosh Xserves for use in a super computer cluster to research the aerodynamics of hypersonic flight. As Apple’s supercomputer division begins to take off, we expect similar purchases by universities and research facilities in the coming months.

The Apple iPod Invasion

ATPM readers over age fifty may remember the British music invasion of the early 1960s. Forty some years later Apple Computer is returning the favor. In the first week of operation Apple’s European iTunes Music Store sold over 800,000 songs in the UK, France, and Germany, with more than 450,000 songs sold in the UK alone.

Splish, Splash, Napster’s Taking a Bath

After crossing the Atlantic and opening a digital music store in Britain, Roxio’s Napster unit appears to have been overwhelmed by the flood of business to Apple’s iTunes Music Store recently introduced in Britain, France, and Germany.

Attempting to carve out business in the wake of Apple’s success, Napster has recently announced a new deal with Best Buy that provides the retail giant with an opportunity to acquire up to 6% of Roxio’s common stock.

In response to the iTMS introduction in Europe, even OD2, the previous European leader in legal online music distribution, agreed to a buyout and will now be owned by Loudeye. The corporate office will be moved from the UK to Seattle.

AAPL Hits New Highs

The European iTunes Music Store isn’t the only new hit for Apple. As June came to a close, Apple’s share price was hitting new multi-year highs. AAPL is now trading at its highest levels since the fall of 2000. After reaching a new multi-year high of $34.18, AAPL ended the month trading at about $33.00 per share.

The Ultimate Music Machine

Apple and BMW have partnered on a new iPod accessory, a $149 adapter that allows BMW owners to control their iPod through the music controls on the steering wheel. The adapter cable is installed through the glove box. Apple calls it “The first seamless integration of iPod and automobile.” We call it an expensive iPod accessory for luxury car owners.

AirPort Express: Music and Money Over Thin Air

Can Apple products defy gravity? Apparently that’s so. The new Apple AirPort Express streams music from iTunes through your home stereo powered speakers. This latest “beyond the box” product from Apple is also designed to help Apple’s stock price continue to defy gravity by adding to the high gross margins on products sold.

Signaling a change in product focus, Apple reduced the price on AirPort Extreme base stations and cards.

Audible Comes Through Loud and Clear continues to grow its business and its sales through the iTunes Music Store. The company is now signing contracts with colleges and universities to provide spoken-word content to students on campus. Watch in the coming months as more spoken-word and other non-music products find their way to iPod owners via of the iTunes Music Store.

Summer Fun

Although many Mac watchers were disappointed that speculation about announcements of new iMacs and iPods did not come true at the WWDC, the first full month of summer promises to be a hot one for Apple product users. We’ll be back next month with a look at Apple’s quarterly financial results. Until then, please enjoy our July issue. This month’s issue includes:

The Candy Apple: Take Me Out to the Ball Game

Ellyn Ritterskamp digitizes a big moment.

Bloggable: Apple in the Balance

Wes Meltzer’s musings for this month discuss the crossroads Apple seems to be at, specifically in regard to security and vulnerabilities, the priority of music for Apple, and Web browser innovation. There’s more in the Mac blogosphere: haxies may not be all that bad after all, what potential Switchers want to hear from other Switchers, and when does the iTMS censorship filter go too far?

Outliners: Three Topics on the Future of Outlining

After an unexpected problem last month, Ted Goranson returns with his About This Particular Outliner column. This month, he deals with three subjects related to futures: the potential for outlining when Frontier goes open source, the new territory of Web Outlining, and the state of outlining applications as a basis for the new ATPO feature on outliner news.

Networks in Action: Using WEP Security on an AirPort Network

Don’t share your network connection with the world. Find out how to enable Wired Equivalent Privacy and keep your network data private.

How To: Summer Photo Fun

Reader Charles Wu shares an idea to make fun—and very personal—photo postcards.

How To: What to Do When You Need a Little More Room

Freeing up space on your hard drive may solve more problems than you realize. Sylvester Roque has some tips to regain some of that space that don’t involve simply trashing a bunch of large files that you may or may not want later.

Cartoon: Cortland

Todd and Angie mire within their PC network-based office. Meanwhile Cortland may get the last laugh with his old boss, Chad.

Cartoon: iTrolls

The iTrolls encounter 17-year-old bugs, a lack of coffee, Noah, and WWDC.

Desktop Pictures: Volcano National Park

This month’s features part two of Christopher Turner’s 2001 trip to Kilauea Volcano National Park on the Big Island of Hawai’i.

Review: BOOQ BP3 System

Christopher Turner reviews BOOQ’s BP3 System: backpack, laptop sleeve, and mobile device pouches, all in one tidy sales unit. Holy PowerBook portability, Macman!

Review: iTalk

Between the time he received the iTalk and the time he wrote this review, Lee Bennett had recorded six short interviews, two telephone conversations (over the speakerphone, with the caller’s permission!), and a half-hour meeting—all of which were later transcribed. Suffice to say, he likes the iTalk!

Review: Parliant PhoneValet

Thanks to this small piece of hardware, Andrew Kator has found a way for a small business to inexpensively acquire a professional phone logging and messaging center.

Review: SymmetryWorks 3.1 and Tessella 1.21

In preparation for next month’s column on mindmapping outliners, Ted Goranson reviews two Illustrator plug-ins that create symmetry patterns.

Review: Wicked Cool Shell Scripts (book)

Are the rumors true? A book on shell scripting that claims to cover OS X and actually comes through? Eric Blair checks out Wicked Cool Shell Scripts to find the truth.


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