PowerBook G4 Titanium Gains Combo Drive -- Tired of making trade-offs in its high-end laptop, Apple today refreshed the PowerBook G4 so all models now come standard with a slot-loading DVD-ROM/CD-RW Combo drive that lets you watch DVD movies, burn CDs, and (of course) read standard audio and data CDs. The timing of the move is odd, but perhaps Apple is trying to take advantage of the remainder of the holiday shopping season (though it will probably be a week before the new configurations ship). Also, useful though the Combo drive is, it's not the kind of big news Steve Jobs can emphasize in a Macworld Expo keynote. Upgrades for those who purchased the PowerBook G4 models released in October (see "Apple Speed Bumps iBook and Titanium" in TidBITS-602) will reportedly be possible, although details weren't yet available. [ACE]
Single Time Machine Backups
Tired of Time Machine running all the time? You can turn it off in the Time Machine preference pane, but still initiate a single backup by choosing Back Up Now from Time Machine's menu bar icon. Of course, your backup is much less likely to be up to date, but Time Machine won't be taking any resources while you're trying to work.