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ATPM 11.04
April 2005



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by Robert Paul Leitao,

Welcome to the April issue of About This Particular Macintosh! We’ve just completed our 10th full year of publication and start our second decade of interesting views, insightful reviews, and general Macintosh-related mayhem and madness by bringing you yet another edition of ATPM in our easy-to-read monthly format.

Secret, Secret on the Wall

When does a news story become a revelation of a trade secret? That’s an issue to be determined by the courts thanks to Apple’s recent efforts to squelch product rumors and reduce news leaks. In the land of legalities, Apple has indeed tasted victory and courts have provided the Mac-maker with a new beachhead to battle online journalists and their undisclosed sources.

With vehement cries of First Amendment rights, online journalists who focus on Apple Computer and the company’s product development efforts are scampering to protect themselves after a California Superior Court ruled in Apple’s favor and the company’s efforts to obtain the identities of those who leaked new product information from the journalists and their publications. Sources who violate non-disclosure agreements to provide information to rumor and news sites will have to contend with the ramifications of their actions while the boundaries for publication of trade secrets obtained through other channels may be tested in this current round of court battles.

What’s a SchemaSoft?

We admit that question will most likely not be the correct response to a Final Jeopardy statement, but Mac users might be intrigued by the answer. SchemaSoft is a software developer that makes products to glean or extract data from a variety of digital formats. It’s also a company that recently sold its principal assets to Apple Computer. What Apple will do with SchemaSoft’s assets has not been disclosed. That information might now be considered a trade secret.

Buy a Pepsi, Get a Tune

Maybe. Consumers do have a 1-in-3 chance of winning a free iTunes tune on specially marked Pepsi bottles. While the promotion expires on April 11, 2005, winners have until May 23, 2005 to redeem their winning bottle caps for a free song.

This year’s Pepsi song giveaway appears to be more successful than the much-maligned campaign of one year ago. Still, Pepsi bottle-tipping might be observed in some locations as eager music fans tilt the bottles to the side to see if they have a winning cap in hand before entering the checkout line.

It’s Time for Tiger

The latest version of Apple’s popular Mac OS X will hit store shelves soon. Pre-orders are being taken at many major outlets, and Mac enthusiasts are watching the clock for an official release date. Officially scheduled to be released in the first half of 2005, many of the new features will save avid Mac users time on tasks while enhancing the operating system’s overall functionality. We will have an in-depth look at Tiger soon after shipping copies arrive.

Daylight Savings Time

The first Sunday of April marks the beginning of Daylight Savings Time in most locals in the US. Residents of Hawaii, Arizona, and certain areas of Indiana will remain an hour behind. But no matter what the clock may say, each issue of ATPM is designed as a time saver. Every digital page from cover to cover is chock full of useful information to the delight of our readers. Our concise presentation of Macintosh-related news and views makes the most of your time leaving plenty of daylight for other worthwhile activities. We welcome you to our April issue.

This issue includes:

The Candy Apple: Some Secrets Are There For Good Reason

Ellyn reveals one way to tell if you are doing the right thing.

Bloggable: Apple v. Public Opinion

What happens when you leak secret information? Steve Jobs comes down hard on you, is what. Wes Meltzer explores the first decision in Apple v. Does and its ramifications…and 17 other items of possible interest to you, from an R.I.P. to Jef Raskin to more on Motorola’s efforts on an iTunes phone.

About This Particular Web Site

This month’s ATPW gives you a double dose of baby names, the histories of your finances and Canada’s flag, and a tip on reducing the number of banner ads you see while browsing. If clicking all those links make you hungry for more, you can also read about three dozen kinds of fried dough.

Pod People

Let your iPod improve your workouts—pump up the jam!

About This Particular Outliner: Outline Exchange and XML, Part 1: History

This month’s ATPO column starts a look at XML and how it can help you exchange outline data among outliners and other applications in a workflow.

Segments: Paint it White

They say white is for virgins, so given it was David Blumenstein’s very first Macworld Expo, the color scheme fit perfectly.

Customizing The Mac OS X User Interface: Part II, Desktop Pictures

The images we choose to place on our desktop environments are very often a direct reflection of our individual personalities; it’s easy to spot the nature lover, dedicated parent, Apple zealot, and more as we pass by their workstations.

How To: Tips for Your Next Multimedia Project

“Powerful, easy to use technology meets powerful, easy to use multimedia applications, and in true Mac tradition the end result is up to the user.”

Cartoon: Cortland

Cortland and his friends schmooze at a luncheon, and trouble may be brewing for Todd.

Cartoon: iTrolls

The iTrolls ask, “What’s In a Name?”

Desktop Pictures: Arizona

This month’s desktop pictures come from Eric Blair’s January 2004 escape to sunny Arizona.

Frisky Freeware

Frisky the Freeware Guinea Pig checks out Thunderbird.

Review: Axio Backpacks

The Swift is another entry in the niche hard-shell backpack market with another set of tradeoffs to consider. Axio’s Swift is good, but not great. The Hybrid is a super-sized backpack for super-sized laptops and super-sized people, with some medium-sized flaws. The Fuse is a good, basic hard-shell backpack with some quirks that would puzzle even Saab owners.

Review: iLite

The iBook user’s answer to backlit PowerBook keyboards.

Review: iPod shuffle

The iPod shuffle is everything it claims to be: light, inexpensive, and fun.

Review: Tetris Elements

Tetris-mania! Since the late 1980s, the video game world has been hooked on falling blocks. The latest entry into the Tetris family, Tetris Elements, has graced the Macintosh platform. Find out if this one lives up to the tradition.


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Reader Comments (1)

John Peterson · April 1, 2005 - 17:30 EST #1
Did ATPM check out the $300 so called "Apple" offer. I didn't get as far as the survey because it's an "at home" job offer. It MAY not be bogus but it looked like an upfront fee was coming. ATPM may want to check it out before egg start appearing on your face.

Do not start vast problems with a half vast mind. JP

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