Cougar Stories March 5, 2013

Apple seeds OS X 10.8.3 Mountain Lion build 12D76 to developers

After releasing 12D74 late last month, Apple released OS X 10.8.3 build 12D76 to developers today with no major changes. Apple isn’t listing any known issues, and the company once again asked developers to focus on AirPlay, AirPort, Game Center, Graphics Drivers, and Safari.

We’ll let you know if developers report any changes in today’s build. Full release notes below:

Thanks, Anonymous!

Update: As noted by MacRumors, build 12D76 appears to include support for NVIDIA’s Quadro K5000 graphics card that the company announced for the Mac Pro in September but is yet to ship. Yesterday we told you about the new  Sapphire HD 7950 graphics card shown for the first time at CeBIT, while support for the AMD 7000 series was first discovered in a 10.8.3 beta back in November. 

Cougar Stories February 14, 2013

Apple seeds OS X 10.8.3 Mountain Lion build 12D68 to developers

Apple has seeded a new release of OS X 10.8.3 to developers today with build number 12D68. Apple, once again, told developers to focus on AirPlay, AirPort, Game Center, Graphics Drivers, and Safari. The build comes one week after Apple released build 12D65 to developers on Feb. 6 with a fix for the “File:///” bug.

We’ll let you know if developers report any changes in today’s build. The full release notes are below. Thanks, Anonymous.

Cougar Stories December 4, 2012

MacUpdate Winter Bundle: $49.99 gets you Company of Heros, Roller Coaster Tycoon, Data Rescue 3, Snapz Pro, much more

Adding another Mac Software bundle to the mix this holiday season, MacUpdate throws in a solid lineup of apps for $49.99, many of which retail for more alone.

You get:

1. Data Rescue 3 ($99.99) * 2. Espresso 2 ($75.00) * 3. Snapz Pro X 2.5 ($69.00) 4. TotalFinder ($18.00) * 5. TotalSpaces ($15.00) * 6. Mac DVDRipper Pro 4 ($24.95) * 7. PopChar X 6 ($38.00) 8. MoneyWell 2 ($49.99) * 9. Swift Publisher 3 ($29.95) * 10. Company of Heroes ($29.99) * 11. Roller Coaster Tycoon 3 Platinum ($29.99)

* BONUS. Live Interior 3D Pro ($129.95) Available to first 12K.buyers only.

* = has never been in a bundle before (at least for the version that we’re selling, which are all paid upgrades from previous ones — like version 4 of Mac DVDRipper Pro)

The total value is $478.87, or $608.82 with Live Interior 3D Pro. For the next two weeks, only $49.99

Cougar Stories September 29, 2012

Woot! has 2011 Dual-Core i5 MacBook Air – New in box (Update: $749)

From 9toToys.com:

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Update: MacMall has it for $748.99 with free shipping and the current 4GB USB 3 version for $948.99

Today only, Woot! has the base model 2011 MacBook Air new in box for $759.99+$5 shipping and tax where applicable (Apple charges roughly the same for a refurbished unit). That’s the lowest price we’ve seen for this MacBook Air that was replaced at WWDC in June.

Bonus: Get this Transcend 64GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive for $29.99 with free shipping at Amazon.

Specs include:

  • Eligible for OS X Mountain Lion Up-to-Date Program
  • Originally released July 2011
  • 11.6-inch (diagonal) high-resolution LED-backlit glossy widescreen display
  • 2GB memory
  • 64GB flash storage
  • Thunderbolt port with support for up to 2560-by-1600 resolution
  • FaceTime camera
  • Intel HD Graphics 3000

Product Details

Processor 1.6 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5
L3 Cache 3MB shared
Memory 2GB of 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM; supports up to 4GB
Hard drive 64GB flash storage1
Graphics Intel HD Graphics 3000 processor with 256MB of DDR3 SDRAM shared with main memory2
Ports Thunderbolt port, two USB 2.0 ports
Audio Stereo speakers, Omnidirectional microphone, headphone port, support for Apple Earphones with Remote and Mic
Wireless 802.11n Wi-Fi wireless networking; IEEE 802.11a/b/g compatible; Bluetooth 4.0 wireless technology3
Size and weight Height: 0.11-0.68 inch (0.3-1.7 cm) Width: 11.8 inches (30 cm) Depth: 7.59 inches (19.2 cm) Weight: 2.38 pounds (1.08 kg)4

All-Flash Storage

“Wow, that was fast.” With MacBook Air, you’ll find yourself saying that a lot. Because flash storage is up to two times faster than a conventional hard drive,5 everything you do is more responsive and immediate — starting up, browsing a large photo library, launching applications, and opening files, for instance. When you combine the speed of flash storage with a fast dual-core processor and power-efficient graphics, your entire MacBook Air experience feels turbocharged. And flash storage doesn’t have any moving parts, which means it’s more reliable and quiet. Lightning fast, durable, silent — qualities that make sense in a notebook tasked with keeping up with you.

High-Speed Thunderbolt I/O

The breakthrough I/O technology pioneered on MacBook Pro and iMac now comes to MacBook Air, letting you connect multiple high-performance devices — such as external hard drives — through a single port. With two 10-Gbps data channels, Thunderbolt lets you transfer data at rates up to 12 times faster than FireWire 800 and up to 20 times faster than USB 2.0. Thunderbolt technology gives MacBook Air capabilities it’s never had before. Like attaching FireWire peripherals or connecting to Ethernet networks at gigabit speeds — two big gains from one tiny port.6

Long-lasting battery. Instant on. Even after a month off.

Since space-saving flash storage leaves room for a bigger battery, you can devote more time to the things you enjoy most. Things like browsing the web, editing photos, and watching videos. Get up to 5 hours of battery life on a single charge on the 11-inch model. Put MacBook Air to sleep, and it enters standby mode to conserve battery life for up to 30 days.7 When you come back to your MacBook Air and open it up, it’s on in an instant.

DVD or CD Sharing

With the Mac App Store, getting the apps you want on your Mac has never been easier. No more boxes, no more discs, no more time-consuming installation. Click once to download and install any app on your Mac. But if an app you need isn’t available from the Mac App Store, you can use DVD or CD Sharing. This convenient feature of OS X lets you wirelessly “borrow” the optical drive of a nearby Mac or PC. So you can install applications from a DVD or CD and have full access to an optical drive without having to carry one around.

Backlit keyboard

As incredibly compact as MacBook Air is, it still manages to fit a full-size keyboard that makes typing as natural as it is comfortable. And now the keyboard is backlit, so you can type with ease in even the dimmest light. A built-in ambient light sensor detects changes in lighting conditions and adjusts the display and keyboard brightness automatically. From a seat in a sunny café to a seat on a cross-country red-eye, you’ll always have the perfect lighting for any environment.

Cougar Stories September 23, 2012

Parallels 8 is a clear winner vs. VMware Fusion 5 in Ars shootout

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Ars put Parallels 8 against VMware Fusion this week and found there is not much of a contest between the two virtualization powerhouses. Parallels 8 out-gunned VMware across the board (as previous benchmarks have shown) performance-wise and adds full support for Retina displays and dictation among other features.

Neither Parallels Desktop 8 or VMWare Fusion 5 are loaded to the gills with new features, so the PD8 update from version 7 is only a must-have if you are looking for Windows 8 or retina MacBook support in Windows 7 or 8. If you need retina support, this is your best option since Parallels did the extra work and made it a better retina experience than in VMWare Fusion 5. The Mountain Lion dictation and experimental DirectX 10 support show that, while Parallels tends to have more frequent paid updates and a higher price-tag, they try to earn the extra value with well thought out features and engineering. Apart from the bugs I saw in Mountain Lion 8, I think Parallels Desktop 8 earns that extra cost with its solid performance, far superior Linux OpenGL support, and existing feature set. But if your needs are more big-business-oriented, VMWare Fusion 5 Pro might be more your thing.

VMware Fusion might fit better into cross-platform installations or for folks with legacy VMware images.

Parallels 8 is available for download or trial here for $79. VMware starts at $49.

Cougar Stories September 1, 2012

Roxio updates Toast Titanium 11.1: Fully Cocoa-ized, Mountain Lion/Gatekeeper compatible, hundreds of changes/fixes

Update: Commenters pointed out the update is not going well…so proceed with caution.

As Roxio’s Toast moves from burning DVDs and BluRays to a “media toolkit” that allows easy social sharing and converting of audio/video (as well as burning/archiving), it is also getting updated with new Macintosh features. Today, Roxio’s Optical media burning software goes to 11.1 and adds the following updates:

  • Toast has been fully Cocoa-ized – Hundreds of changes and fixes implemented as a part of this effort
  • Added OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion compatibility
  • Added support for recording to 100GB and 128GB BDXL media
  • Implemented Gatekeeper Support
  • Web-Video feature improvements
    • Requires using Safari to capture web-video
    • YouTube users may need to OPT OUT of HTML5 Trial
  • Mountain Lion users will need to update to 10.8.1 or later to publish video to YouTube

The boxed package is $99, the non-App Store download is $79, and a Toast 10-to-11 upgrade is $59. Amazon also has it for $52, while the free update to 11.1 is here.

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