- Apple TV 2.2 brings security updates to Apple's home media center - in theory, maliciously crafted movie files could result in crashes or arbitrary code execution. More interestingly, the update also brings the Genius feature to Apple TV - hold down the Play/Pause button while a song is playing to display a pop-up menu that lets you start Genius. Other features include an HD tag next to HD TV shows, support for buying HD TV shows, Music Video playlists, shuffle support for music videos, and a Standby menu option accessed from the Settings menu (you can still press Play/Pause for three seconds to put the Apple TV in standby, but only from the main menu). Some people have reported sluggish performance after applying the update; restoring the Apple TV to its factory settings and then downloading and applying the update appears to fix that issue. (Free)
- Firefox PDF Plugin for Mac OS X 0.9.9 from Sam Gross updates the plug-in that enables Firefox to display PDF files within the browser with the capability to open a displayed PDF in Preview via the contextual menu. The plug-in works only in Firefox 3.0.x on Intel-based Macs running Mac OS X 10.4 or later. (Free)
- PDFpen 4.0.1 and PDFpenPro 4.0.1 from SmileOnMyMac update the PDF editing software with new preferences for OCR prompts and a number of bug fixes to the 4.0 versions released last week. ($49.95/$99.95 new, free update for 4.0 users or $25 for previous owners, 11 MB)
- iTunes 8.0.1 from Apple fixes several bugs related to new features introduced in iTunes 8.0. The Genius feature now plays the current song when you create a new Genius playlist (instead of restarting the song at the beginning) and also syncs its results to an iPod. The VoiceOver accessibility feature is also improved, as well as syncing spoken menus to the iPod nano. This release also fixes a problem when checking for updates at the App Store and no longer deletes HD TV episodes when downloading the SD versions. (Free, 58.5 MB)
- SousChef 1.0 from Acacia Tree Software is a new addition to the world of cooking and recipe management tools (see Andy Affleck's "Cook from Your Mac: 10 Recipe Tools Compared," 2007-09-21). Notable features include an interactive online recipe database, recipe substitute suggestions, and a voice-controlled hands-free mode. ($30 new, 7.5 MB)
- OmniWeb 5.8 from The Omni Group updates the independent Web browser with support for the latest version of WebKit, so OmniWeb 5.8 now uses the same version of WebKit as Safari 3.1 and has the same core capabilities, such as downloadable fonts, CSS animation, HTML 5 media tags, and client-side database storage. Other changes include a fix for a Spaces-related bug, support for non-POSIX file URLs, tweaked toolbar icons, and the capability to masquerade as Google Chrome. Requires Mac OS X 10.4.8 or later. ($14.95 new, free update from OmniWeb 5.x, 19.4 MB)
- Quark Publishing System 8, QuarkCopyDesk 8, and QuarkXPress Server 8 have been unveiled by Quark in support of QuarkXPress 8. New in QuarkCopyDesk 8, the text and picture editing software, is a redesigned interface, advanced typographical control, and support for East Asian text. Major changes to QuarkXPress Server 8 include a global file format that enables users to open files made with any language version of QuarkXPress 8, and support for native Adobe Illustrator files. Also new to QuarkXPress Server 8 is interface support for 13 languages, spell checking for more than 30 languages, and improved asset management through QPS Connect Client. Quark Publishing System 8, QuarkCopyDesk 8 and QuarkXPress Server 8 will be available in Q4 2008. (Full release notes)
- Drive Genius 2.1 from Prosoft Engineering updates the disk utility software with the new DriveSlim feature, which enables you to search for and delete files on your hard drive to free up additional space. Delete options include Large File Search and Delete, Duplicate File Search and Delete, Multi-Language Slimming, Universal Binary Support Removal, and Backup. ($99 new, free update from 2.0, 29.5 MB)
- You Control: Desktops 1.3 from You Software updates the virtual desktop manager with Leopard support, added customization options, and a number of bug fixes. New to this version are improved controls over cursor behavior, options for highlighting the active desktop in the menu bar, and an additional Quartz Extreme transition effect. ($29.95 new, free update, 2.8 MB)
How Loud Are Your Mac's Fans?
When they get hot, Macs turn on various internal fans to keep components cool. The noise can be annoying, but just how loud is it? If you have an iOS device with a built-in microphone, you can download one of many free sound meter apps (search on
decibel in the App Store) and see if you're subjecting your ears to a truly unreasonable noise level.
- Cook from Your Mac: 10 Recipe Tools Compared (21 Sep 07)
Published in TidBITS 948.
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TidBITS Watchlist: Notable Software Updates for 06-Oct-08
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