- Firefox 3.0.3 from Mozilla updates the popular Web browser to fix a number of bugs, including some "Mac-specific issues" that aren't further described. A number of fixes focus on improved security and stability. 3.0.3 follows hard on the heels of 3.0.2, fixing a problem that prevented users from saving or retrieving passwords. (Free, 17.2 MB)
- iPDA 4.2 from ZappTek is an update to the company's software for syncing documents, email, RSS feeds, and a variety of other data to normal iPods. New to this version is support for the 4G iPod nano's contact grouping, improved Entourage contact processing, and improved RSS feed processing. Needless to say, iPDA does not support the iPhone or iPod touch, both of which can already do what iPDA brings to other iPod models. ($19.95 new, free updates for 4.0 owners or $10 to upgrade from an earlier version, 1.1 MB)
- Java for Mac OS X 10.5 Update 2 from Apple improves the security, performance, and compatibility for Java SE 6, J2SE 5.0, and J2SE 1.4.2 on Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard. This update requires Mac OS X 10.5.4 or later. Released simultaneously, Java for Mac OS X 10.4, Release 7 improves reliability and compatibility for Java 2 Platform Standard Edition 5.0 and Java 1.4 on Mac OS X 10.4.11 and later. (Free, 136.4/79.7 MB)
- ShareTool 1.2.3 from Yazsoft enables two computers to connect remotely and securely for Bonjour networking. With ShareTool, you can access resources that typically only work over a local network connection, like iTunes sharing, over the Internet. To prevent snooping, the software utilizes SSH encryption. Version 1.2.3 overhauls the interface, exposes more information about the connection, logs connection attempts, and fixes a variety of minor problems. ($20 single user, free upgrade, 9 MB)
- WireTap Anywhere 1.0.2 from Ambrosia Software updates the recently released audio software with a variety of bug fixes and enhancements. Additional down-mixing capabilities, performance optimizations, and software source muting features are among the changes. ($129 new, free update, 9.7 MB)
- NoteBook 3.0 from Circus Ponies is a major upgrade of the information management software. Notable additions include diagramming and sketching capabilities, PDF annotation tools, handwriting recognition features, the capability to open multiple pages at once, and a redesigned interface. ($49.95 new, $19.95 upgrade, 14.77 MB)
- Art Text 2 from BeLight Software is a major upgrade of the graphics and text editing program. High on the list of changes is the addition of a template gallery with over 200 new templates, more than 120 new vector icons, and a collection of nearly 200 texture samples. Additionally, the interface has been redesigned, there is support for multiple layers, two gradient fill options have been added, and you can now control stroke properties for every outline. ($39.95 new, free upgrade for purchase since 01-Jul-08 or $19.95 otherwise, 36.3 MB)
- PageSpinner 5.1 from Optima System is a relatively minor update to the Web development package. Changes include cosmetic improvements to match Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, an option to auto-check HTML and PHP syntax on save, and a variety of other interface enhancements and bug fixes. ($29.95 new, free update, 4.9 MB)
- PDFpen 4.0 and PDFpenPro 4.0 from SmileOnMyMac get a major update with the addition of OCR (optical character recognition) when running on an Intel-based Mac with a 1.8 GHz or faster CPU. The new versions of these PDF editing tools also come with an improved user interface featuring a document sidebar, improved file compatibility, Microsoft Word document import, additional document markup capabilities (including underline and strikethrough), save as TIFF, and the capability to print notes and comments. PDFpenPro can also create and edit document tables of contents. ($49.95/$99.95 new, $25 update, 10.8/11.0 MB)
Smarter Parental Controls
If you've been using the parental controls options in Mac OS X to lock your child out of using a particular computer late at night, but would like to employ a more clever technique to limit Internet access, turn to MAC address filtering on an Apple base station.
To do this, launch AirPort Utility, select your base station, and click Manual Setup. In the Access Control view, choose Time Access to turn on MAC filtering. You'll need to enter the MAC address of the particular computer, which (in 10.5 Leopard and 10.6 Snow Leopard) you can find in the Network System Preferences pane: click AirPort in the adapter list, and click Advanced. The AirPort ID is the MAC address.
Published in TidBITS 947.
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