Apple’s PowerBooks and iBooks got kicked up a notch this week, and it reminds me that laptop owners who play games on their computers suffer a problem that the rest of us don’t have to worry about too much — making sure they bring their discs with them when they play.
One of the most common forms of game copy protection these days is to require the physical medium to be in the drive when you play. It’s effective and it works reliably. For the majority of desktop Mac owners who keep their discs relatively well organized, it’s not an issue.
But for users who have adopted iBooks or PowerBooks as their only computer, it’s an irritation: You’ve got a machine powerful enough to play most of today’s A-list commercial game releases anywhere you please, but you’ve got to remember to take the discs with you when you go. Not a big deal if you do all your gaming at home. But if that’s the case, why’d you buy a laptop in the first place?
One way to work around this is to make disk images of the game CD. But if you have more than one or two games you play regularly, you end up wasting a lot of space on your disk with these images. What’s more, mounting disc images doesn’t always work — some games are smart enough to tell the difference and won’t work that way.
From quarter to quarter, people continue to buy iBooks and PowerBooks in droves, and that trend doesn’t show any signs of abating. Sooner or later, Mac game publishers should endeavor to find a better way of making sure their games are being used legally than through a system that just burdens road warriors with one more thing to take with them.
(Peter Cohen, Senior Editor and Game Wizard for MacCentral, supplies this week’s guest editorial.)
Jobs, Apple shareholders talk marketshare, Real, more
Apple on Thursday held its annual shareholders meeting, and the company’s nominees for its Board of Directors passed by a huge margin. Apple CEO Steve Jobs and members of the Executive Committee spent almost 45 minutes answering questions on topics from company strategy to Apple’s plans to expand its overall marketshare.
Apple unveils Motion, updates Final Cut Pro, more
Apple introduced new products for pro video and cinema markets at this week’s NAB 2004 trade show:
Motion, a new text, graphics and animation package; Final Cut Pro HD, a free update to
Final Cut Pro 4, with HD editing capabilities;
DVD Studio Pro 3; and
Shake 3.5, for compositing and special effects. Apple also introduced
Xsan, a new storage area network file system.
Apple demos new high-quality video codec at NAB
Apple updates PowerBooks and iBooks
Adobe’s Chizen: Mac business has stayed strong
Ben & Jerry’s sweepstakes to give away iPod, 50,000 ITMS songs
New Base Station offers Power over Ethernet, more
Trouble in East Fishkill? IBM chip group struggles
IBM’s microelectronics division, the Systems and Technology Group, continues to struggle as yield problems plague its new manufacturing facility in East Fishkill, New York, where IBM makes the PowerPC 970 and 970FX chips used in Apple’s Power Mac G5 and Xserve G5.
AJA adds new Io features, intros Kona 2 card
Toshiba announces 100GB 2.5-inch HD
Canon unveils two new 2.2 MP Mini DV camcorders
Aurora unveils PipeHD
SlimServer adds support for SHOUTcast radio, more
Alias announces Maya 6
Alias announced Maya 6, the latest major revision to its popular 3D graphics and animation software, at this week’s NAB 2004 show. New features and enhancements include significant performance boosts for Mac OS X; new tools for creating realistic-looking hair, cloth and fur; and integration with Adobe Photoshop. The upgrade will be available for download on April 26.
RealNetworks offers OS X encoding plug-in beta
Discreet to support Final Cut Pro interchange
Adobe announces After Effects 6.5
Studio Artist optimized for G5, dual processors
DataWerkz: FileMaker-like access for MySQL, PostgreSQL
Around the Web
Real’s Glaser: iTunes Music Store “kind of a Soviet model”
RealNetworks CEO Rob Glaser, speaking at this week’s NAB show, claimed that incompatible digital rights management tools — including Apple’s Fairplay system — will alienate consumers. He pointedly decried Apple’s closed environment as “kind of a Soviet model,” which “is not going to fly in the mainstream market.”
Jobs makes Time 100 list
Tests find theoretical data speed limit
Experts warn of TCP vulnerability
Polishing Apple’s future
Bluetooth phones and Mac OS X in perfect sync
Sports Illustrated’s digital workflow
Apple, Japanese audio companies to launch net music service
How to optimize AirPort reception in portables (Apple Knowledge Base)
Intel touts ‘MP3 for 3D’ universal graphics format