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By Linda Comer

Business software may not be as colorful as certain hardware products announced at Macworld Expo this week, but Mac users won't be disappointed by the array of office and productivity offerings at the show.

Database enthusiasts will find plenty of new developments in the FileMaker Inc. booth (607, ); besides a new version of FileMaker Pro itself, several third-party vendors have released cool add-ons and programs built around FileMaker. Waves in Motion's oAzium Charts is a plug-in that lets you chart data within FileMaker Pro; New Millennium's Genesis 2.0 uses the FileMaker database engine to provide an integrated business operating system in FileMaker; and Imacination Software's Ch-ching 2.1, also built around FileMaker, makes it easy to create an electronic storefront on the Web.

If you're a Palm user, you've probably been anxiously awaiting the release of 3Com's ( ) Mac OS desktop software, Palm MacPac 2.0. Drop by the 3Com/Palm Computing booths (635 and 3051) to see the beta version in action (the final version is expected to be available this spring for $14.95). MacPac includes a PIM based on Claris Organizer as well as a serial cable adapter for connecting to a Palm connected organizer. The company also announced a set of authoring tools for creating conduits from the Palm platform to Mac applications; the Conduit Development Kit is scheduled for release later this year.

Can't bear to be separated from your desktop applications when you're on the road? Check out the soon-to-be-released Documents to Go for PalmPilot from DataViz (booth 935, ). Just drag your word processing and spreadsheet documents into a desktop window; the next time you HotSync, those files will be viewable from your PalmPilot.

On the accounting front, BestWare (booth 3835, ) is demonstrating the brand-new MYOB Accounting Plus 8; this version adds a professional time-billing module and a link to Microsoft Word and Excel 98. And Aatrix Software (booth 4250, has released new versions of Aatrix Accounting, Payroll, and Mac P&L. The Y2K-compliant Aatrix Accounting 3.0 offers improved exporting, invoice printing, and balance forwarding on invoices, deposits, and payments.

Other hot business products spotted at Expo: Intuit (booth 1743, ) has released MacInTax Deluxe '98, just in time for tax season; Casady & Greene (booth 1829, ) is showing off an upcoming version of Spell Catcher, code-named Write On, along with the new Grammarian 2.0; Aladdin Systems (booth 2217, ) is demonstrating the recently released StuffIt Deluxe 5.0; and Chronos (booth 1346, ) is showing its Eddy-award-winning PIM, Consultant 2.5.


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