Tonya and I are deep into working on the fourth edition of Internet Starter Kit for Macintosh, which means that we're likely to be less responsive to email for a while.
If you're the author of a freely distributable freeware or shareware Internet program, I'd like to consider your program for inclusion on the CD that will come with the book. The same goes for commercial Internet programs with freely distributable demos. So, if you'd like to submit your program for inclusion on the CD, check out the Web form at:
Similarly, if you are an Internet service provider (anywhere in the world) that supports PPP and would like to be included in the book and installer, send email to <firstname.lastname@example.org>. We'll collect names and send out more information when we have a Web signup form posted. [ACE]
IBM Gets Wide-Ranging Mac OS License -- As noted in TidBITS-324, IBM today announced an agreement with Apple allowing it to sell PowerPC processors along with a Mac OS sub-license to any manufacturer. As noted, IBM does not appear to plan to manufacture Mac clones, but instead to sell reference design specs, licenses, and logic components to other manufacturers who will make PowerPC Platform machines. Those manufacturers, in turn, can choose to develop Mac clones and license the Mac OS directly from IBM, without having to enter negotiations with Apple. Datatech (DTK) Enterprises and Tatung are expected to announce plans to sub-license the Mac OS from IBM; other manufacturers have already announced third-party products for the PowerPC platform that would help system manufacturers build Mac OS computers for the PowerPC Platform. Also, rumor has it that IBM plans to drop OS/2 in favor of the Mac OS. [GD]
PowerTower & PowerCenter -- Power Computing announced two new lines of Mac clones last week, including a machine that qualifies as the fastest single-processor Mac available. The PowerTower line sports a PowerPC 604 processor running at a dizzying 166 or 180 MHz in a mini-tower case with three PCI slots, a minimum of 16 MB of RAM, and four drive bays. The PowerCenter line features a 120, 132, or 150 MHz PowerPC 604 in a low-profile (120 MHz) or desktop case, with three PCI slots and a minimum of 8 MB of RAM. Pricing for PowerTowers starts around $3,800, PowerCenters around $1,900. Tests so far show that the PowerTowers edge out Apple's high-end Power Mac 9500/150 by five to fifteen percent, even though they can't use memory interleaving, being based on the 7200 motherboard design (which is currently the only one that can crank a PowerPC 604 above 150 MHz). As with previous models, Power Computing machines ship with a keyboard, a significant software bundle (including Speed Doubler on the PowerTowers), and a 30-day, money-back guarantee. [GD]
WebHead Update -- No sooner do I write an article on recent Web browser updates (see TidBITS-326) than it's, well, out-of-date. Netscape released version 2.02 or Navigator last week (primarily fixing security problems); NCSA released 3.0b2 of Mosaic, and beta 4 of Apple's Cyberdog is now available (if you have a Power Mac and OpenDoc). [GD]
Quicken 6 R7 -- Intuit has release R7 of Quicken 6.0 for Macintosh, which is supposed to address limitations of Quicken's online banking features and "a few" other problems reported by customers. The download ranges from 1.2 to 3.4 MB, depending which version you need. [GD]