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TidBITS#1118/19-Mar-2012

We don’t focus on financial news much, but Adam found some fascinating details in Apple’s announcement that it would start using some of its cash to pay quarterly dividends and to repurchase stock. Other articles in this wide-ranging issue include Jeff Carlson’s explanation of how to use iTunes Match to get higher-quality, DRM-free copies of your music; Adam’s review of the CloudPull utility for backing up your Google Docs, Gmail, and other Google data locally; and Glenn Fleishman’s analysis of a recent Elcomsoft white paper criticizing the security of iOS password-keeping apps. Finally, we’re pleased to welcome as a long-term sponsor Fujitsu, makers of the ScanSnap family of document scanners. Notable software releases this week include Aperture 3.2.3, Sandvox 2.5.3, and Firefox 11.0.

Jeff Carlson 4 comments

iTunes Match Improves Sonos Music Selection

If you own a Sonos speaker system, or another non-Apple device that reads your iTunes library, you may be missing something: songs you purchased prior to 2009 that are still encumbered by Apple’s FairPlay DRM. But with iTunes Match, you can download DRM-free, higher-quality versions.

Glenn Fleishman 16 comments

Elcomsoft Criticism of iOS Password Apps Overblown

Security firm Elcomsoft has released a white paper detailing weaknesses when short passwords with mixed characters or longer ones solely made up of numbers are used with many iOS password-keeping apps, including 1Password, LastPass, and mSecure. The impact of these weaknesses is limited to start with, and not a risk unless someone is out to get your passwords in particular.

TidBITS Staff No comments

ExtraBITS for 19 March 2012

We have a lovely collection of ExtraBITS links for you this week, including a hint that we may someday see more lenient electronics usage policies on airplanes, Glenn Fleishman’s thoughts on the Mike Daisey controversy, answers to oodles of iPad questions via a MUG meeting on MacVoicesTV, and a cool demonstration of the scale of the universe.