Welcome to the August issue of About This Particular Macintosh! We’re back this month to bring you all the news, the best reviews, and our well-informed views about the latest happenings in the world of Macintosh computing. Before you go leaping through the electronic pages of our latest issue, we’d like to recap a few of the Macworld Expo announcements.
In the days since the recent Macworld Expo, Mac users have become quite vocal in expressing their views about .Mac (formerly known as iTools) and the $129 price tag for the latest upgrade for Mac OS X.
No New G4, But One Big iMac
To the surprise of many Apple watchers, Steve Jobs & Co. did not unveil a new iteration of the Velocity Engine-powered G4 mini-tower at Apple’s semi-annual trade show. Instead, the Cupertino-based company offered buyers a new, 17" LCD iMac. No matter that the existing inventory of 15" LCD iMacs in retails stores provides consumers with a more than ample supply of the stylish all-in-one computer introduced in January, the new 17" iMac is supposed to spur what to now have been lackluster sales of the flat-panel PC.
Got A Mac? Get .Mac?
In another conference surprise, Apple announced that the free e-mail and Web page hosting service formerly known as iTools has been re-branded as a premium-priced suite of services now called .Mac. What would a user with a Mac do without .Mac? Well, that’s the question Mac users are answering in very large and vocal numbers. For $99.95 dollars (existing iTools members get a one-time discount to $49.95 on the annual price) a .Mac subscriber gets 100 MB of remote storage, 15 MB of e-mail storage along with a prestigious mac.com e-mail address, virus protection services, a backup solution that works with the remote storage service, and a few other handy features. Of course, a select portion of these services had once been offered for free. Do Mac users need .Mac? Well, the iTools account holder who don’t wish to ante up $49.95 and other Mac users who never used the service but don’t like losing the option of getting something for free have begun petition drives and filled every available space on the Mac Web with vitriolic complaints. Of course, those of us who have quietly shelled out $49.95 for the new and enhanced services have been rather quiet.
The $129.00 Jaguar Upgrade
Apple is releasing the latest upgrade to Mac OS X, 10.2 or “Jaguar,” for the retail price of $129. This is the first upgrade from Apple of its next generation operating system that is not being made available to users for free. Regardless of the enhanced features, the .Mac re-branding announcement combined with the $129 upgrade of OS X has created quite a stir. That is until a few rather observant folks discovered that the $129 upgrade is available for pre-order at Amazon.com for $79 after a $50 rebate.
But Here’s Something That’s Still Free
It’s the latest issue of ATPM! We haven’t raised our price since our complimentary subscription service began in 1995. We won’t promise you the world, but we do believe you will find many things of real value inside our August issue.
Our August issue includes:
Beyond the Barline: The Other Petition
David Ozab reveals common threads between the .Mac controversy, and the Emagic acquisition. Here’s one: separate petitions are posted online in protest of each.
The Candy Apple: Macworld’s New Toys
It’s not even close to Christmas yet, but Ellyn Ritterskamp is already talking about toys—Macworld toys, that is! She gives us a rundown of the new offerings presented at the recent Macworld New York show. Get your list out, and check it twice.
Segments: Mac OS X 10.1.5—While We Wait for 10.2
For those readers who have not made the “Switch” (to OS X, that is), David Zatz provides some useful tips and a warning or two for those who want to make the jump. For those who have, his comments might provoke some discussion. Learn from his experience.
Segments: Why I Haven’t Switched to Mac OS X
We’ve been told that a couple of million Mac users have gone over to OS X. But that leaves quite a few (in fact, the majority) who have not. Gregory Tetreault is one of these. He explains why “The Future of the Mac” is not for him right now.
Roll Your Own: Go with the Flow
Chuck Ross is back with the latest installment in his series on creating your own programs. He now gets into the nitty-gritty of flow control, boolean expressions, and more.
Report: Macworld Expo New York 2002 Wrap-up
Our intrepid reporter, Eric Blair, braved the five-hour drive and the wilds of NYC to check out the recent Macworld. Read his take on what he saw and heard while mingling with the masses.
Everyone is impressed at how Steve Jobs can do his Macworld Keynotes so “off the cuff.” Ever wonder where he gets his inspiration? Cortland gives us a clue on where he came up with the new upgrade pricing on “Jagwire” which he (Steve, we mean) presented during his Macworld New York keynote.
Desktop Pictures: Oregon’s Southern Coast
Contributing Editor David Ozab shares more pictures from Oregon—this month, the southern coast.
Shareware Roundup: Scrabble and Boggle
In the mood for some wordplay? Brooke Smith rounds up five Scrabble- and Boggle-type games that will let you check your Mac’s (and your own) vocabulary.
Review: 24U Appearance OSAX 2.0
Perfect for all those times when your Mac knows just what to ask but not how to let you respond, Michael Tsai reviews 24U Appearance OSAX, an AppleScript scripting addition that gives new powers to the old
display dialog command.
Review: Locator 0.7.2
Tired of waiting for Sherlock to plod through your hard drive looking for files? Paul Fatula shows you how to find faster and smarter with Locator, which provides a GUI for the Unix
Review: MacReporter 1.1.1
Want to know the latest news of the Macintosh world? Guest reviewer Joseph Henry introduces you to MacReporter, a convenient alternative to surfing from site to site.
Review: Three Periodic Table Programs
Students and scientists, rejoice! No more shall you have to flip through weighty tomes of paper knowledge when, from time to time, you need to learn about this element or that. Gregory Tetrault reviews three programs that put the Periodic Table of the Elements right at your fingertips.
Review: pop-pop 1.01
Paul Fatula reviews Ambrosia Software’s newest release, pop-pop, an addictive Breakout clone that adds much addictive excitement to the game while maintaining the original’s easy-to-learn game play.
Review: Tinderbox 1.1.3
Our dictionary calls a Tinderbox a dangerous situation likely to erupt into violence, but in Gregory Tetrault’s review, Tinderbox takes on a whole new meaning, as a “personal content management assistant.”