Mac News Review

Mac OS X Lion Preview, US Mac Sales Up 20%, Apple Products in 30% of Top 2010 Movies, and More

This Week's Apple and Desktop Mac News

Compiled by Charles Moore and edited by Dan Knight - 2011.02.25

Mac notebook and other portable computing is covered in The 'Book Review. iPad, iPod, iPhone, and Apple TV news is covered in The iNews Review.

All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted.

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News & Opinion

Apple Releases Developer Preview of Mac OS X Lion

Launchpad in Mac OS X Lion
The Launchpad in Mac OS X Lion.

PR: CUPERTINO, California. February 24, 2011 - Apple today released a developer preview of Mac OS X Lion, which takes some of the best ideas from iPad and brings them back to the Mac for the eighth major release of the world's most advanced operating system. Lion features Mission Control, an innovative new view of everything running on your Mac; Launchpad, a new home for all your Mac apps; full screen apps that use the entire Mac display; and new Multi-Touch gestures. Lion also includes the Mac App Store where you can to discover, install and automatically update Mac apps. The Lion preview is available to Mac Developer Program members through the Mac App Store today, and the final version of Lion will ship to customers this summer.

"The iPad has inspired a new generation of innovative features in Lion, commented Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing Philip Schiller. "Developers are going to love Mission Control and Launchpad, and can now start adding great new Lion features like full screen, gestures, Versions and Auto Save to their own apps.

iPhoto for Lion in full screen mode
iPhoto for Lion in full screen mode.

Mission Control is a powerful, entirely new feature that unifies Expos, Dashboard, Spaces, and full screen apps to give you a bird's eye view of every app and window running on your Mac. With a simple swipe, your desktop zooms out to display your open windows grouped by app, thumbnails of your full screen apps as well as your Dashboard, and allows you to instantly navigate anywhere with a click.

Launchpad makes it easier than ever to find and launch any app. With a single click, Launchpad displays all your Mac apps in a stunning full screen layout where you can launch, reorder or organize apps into folders. You can also arrange apps into multiple pages and swipe between them.

Lion brings the full screen experience that iPad users love to the Mac. With one click, your application window goes full screen, taking advantage of your Mac's brilliant display. You can swipe from one full screen window to another and even back to your Desktop or Dashboard.

New Multi-Touch gestures and fluid animations give you a natural and intuitive way to interact with your Mac. New gestures include pinching your fingers to zoom in on a web page or image, swiping left or right to turn a page or switch between full screen apps and swiping up to enter Mission Control.

new version of Mail for Mac OS X Lion
A new version of Mail for Mac OS X Lion.

Lion also includes the Mac App Store, where you can find great new apps, buy them with your iTunes account, and download and install them in just one step. Apps purchased from the Mac App Store are installed directly into Launchpad.

Additional features in Lion include:

  • a new version of Mail, with an elegant, widescreen layout inspired by the iPad; Conversations, which automatically groups related messages into one easy to read timeline; more powerful search; and support for Microsoft Exchange 2010;
  • AirDrop, a remarkably simple way to copy files wirelessly from one Mac to another with no setup;
  • Versions, which automatically saves successive versions of your document as you create it, and gives you an easy way to browse, edit and even revert to previous versions;
  • Resume, which conveniently brings your apps back exactly how you left them when you restart your Mac or quit and relaunch an app;
  • Auto Save, which automatically saves your documents as you work;
  • the all new FileVault, that provides high performance full disk encryption for local and external drives, and the ability to wipe data from your Mac instantaneously; and
  • Mac OS X Lion Server, which makes setting up a server easier than ever and adds support for managing Mac OS X Lion, iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch devices.

US Mac Sales Up 20% Year Over Year

AppleInsider's Slash Lane reports:

"The latest US sales data shows Apple's Mac sales are up 20 percent year over year, putting the company on pace to meet an expected 3.6 million units sold in the March quarter. The new domestic sales data from the NPD Group was shared Tuesday by analyst Gene Munster with Piper Jaffray."

Apple Products in 30% of Top 2010 Movies

AppleInsider's Daniel Eran Dilger reports:

"Apple product placements appeared 30 percent of the top films of 2010, more than any other brand, including Nike, Chevrolet and Ford, which all tied for second place with placement in 24 percent of the top movies. Placement of Apple's Macs, iPhones and iPods and other products in films resulted in the company being cited for the '2010 Award for Overall Product Placement' by Brandcameo."

Seagate Momentus XT Hybrid Drive Wearing Faster in Macs?

Hardmac's Sylvain says that some users of Seagate's Momentus XT hybrid drive are reporting issues when installed in Macs, although Hard Mac is using one in a 13" MacBook Pro and reports that it's been working very well so far, speculating that there may have been a batch of faulty early production Momentus XT drives.

Software

PhotoLine Image Editor for Mac OS X and Windows

PR: The German developers of PhotoLine have released version 16.50 of their Photoshop Elements and Pixelmator challenger.

PhotoLine for Mac OS XPhotoLine features:

  • 32/64 bit application
  • Image Processing
  • 16 bit per channel, support of CMYK and Lab
  • Color management with ICC profiles
  • Lossless imaging
  • Process digital photos
  • Retouch, correct
  • Browse
  • IPTC and EXIF data handling
  • Rotate images lossless
  • Rename images and create catalogues
  • Create HTML galleries
  • Add and edit keywords
  • Powerful search capabilities
  • DTP/Layout/Text
  • "Real" PDF Import and Export (not just a big image)
  • Multipage documents
  • Calendar and barcode creation
  • Rich text functions
  • Internet/Animations
  • Create Flash and GIF animations
  • Web Export
  • Tile images, create buttons and image maps
  • Batch conversion
  • Create slideshows
  • Record actions
  • Print multipage documents, flyers and labels
  • USB-Stick support
  • Multiprocessor support

New in Version 16:

  • Better user interface
  • Adjustment Layer Palette
  • Palettes improved
  • Image processing
  • Liquify Tool
  • Color Filter
  • New Filters
  • Miscellaneous
  • Morph Vector Layers
  • QR-Code
  • GhostScript Import
  • OS X: Scanning With Image Capture

You can download a trial version of PhotoLine for Windows or Mac OS X. The trial version can be used for 30 days for free without heavy limitations.

Learn more about what you can achieve with PhotoLine in the online tutorial, or download the offline version.

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.4 and higher, Universal Binary

PhotoLine sells for €59 (approximately $80)

Wondershare Launches First PDF Converter on Mac App Store

PR: A 6-in-1 PDF Converter for Mac, AnyBizSoft PDF Converter, is now available on the Mac App Store. It is the first and only PDF conversion tool that is available on the Mac App Store. It was released on February 15, 2011 and sells for $69.99.

AnyBizSoft PDF ConverterAnyBizSoft PDF Converter is an easy-to-use application that empowers users to convert PDF to 6 popular formats including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, EPUB, HTML and Text on Mac OS X.

By converting PDF to the Office formats, users can edit, reuse, present PDF files easily and efficiently. Besides, converting PDF to EPUB can highly improve ebook reading experience on iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Sony Reader, and more.

Key Features

  • Good Preservation: PDF Converter preserves all the elements of original PDF files, such as text, hyperlinks, images, layouts, tables, columns, and graphics.
  • High Efficiency: PDF Converter supports batch-conversion and partial-conversion modes. Batch-conversion allows Mac users to convert maximum 50 PDF files at one time. Partial-Conversion helps users specify page ranges (e.g. page 1-15) or select specific pages (e.g. page 5, 7, 14).
  • Encrypted PDF Files Conversion: PDF Converter also converts encrypted PDF files. If the PDF file has copying, printing and editing restrictions, Mac users can convert it with this app directly. If the PDF file has an open password, PDF Converter requires open password to convert this file for protecting the copyright.
  • Easy to Use: Users can simply drag and drop PDF files to the program to convert. And it only takes 3 steps to convert PDF files: Import-Choose format-Convert.

Price: $69.99

Get AnyBizSoft PDF Converter from Mac App Store, or download the application from the official website .

Catholic Calendar: Free Liturgical Calendar with Saint of the Day

PR: Catholic Calendar is a Liturgical calendar for every year from 1970 to 2300 and beyond.

Catholic Calendar

The Calendar includes feasts and celebrations according to the General Calendar and the local calendars of the UK, the USA, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Ireland, and others, and also features "About Today" pages giving more information about the saint of the day.

System requirements:

  • You need a computer running Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger, 10.5 Leopard, 10.6 Snow Leopard, or later.
  • This is a Universal program, meaning that it will run on both Intel Macs and PowerPC Macs.

Freeware

Free Pig Latin Translator 2.0

PR: Pig Latin Translator is a Dashboard widget that allows you to enter any text and with a quick click you can translate it into Pig Latin.

Pig Latin TranslatorNew in version 2.0:

  • Added the ability to use Dazzle update engine.
  • Rewrote the entire core from the ground up.
  • General bug fixes.
  • Ability to copy results to clipboard.
  • Added ability to have Pig Latin texts read to you.

System Requirements:

  • PPC/Intel
  • Mac OS X 10.4.6 or later.

Freeware

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