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macOS New App Release – Barcode Basics 4.16

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Product Announcement – Ghostotter Software of Driffield, United Kingdom has released Barcode Basics 4.16, a significant update to their flagship barcode generation tool on macOS. Graphic designers will appreciate Barcode Basics’ ease-of-use. Simply fill in your barcode specifications in the main interface, preview the barcode to check it is as you expect, then save it to disk for use in Word, Illustrator, Powerpoint, and more.

Features:

  • Bar Width Reduction (BWR) to allow you to compensate for ink spread on printing presses – This is an essential feature for professional printing (and cannot be supported by other font based applications)
  • Bar height (truncation) and barcode scale (magnification)
  • Optional add-on digits (either 2 or 5) are supported for EAN, UPC, ISMN, ISBN and ISSN codes
  • Fast response from English speaking support via the “Contact support…” option in the app’s main menu
  • Support for metric (mm or microns) and imperial measurements (inches)
  • Barcodes can be exported in EPS (vector) format or high resolution GIF, BMP, JPG or PNG
  • Barcodes are compatible with Illustrator, InDesign, Photoshop, Word, Powerpoint etc.
  • Automator action provided as standard – add barcode creation functionality to Automator apps, scripts, services and workflows without needing to know any programming
  • No sneaky In-App purchases – you get all the functionality listed on this page, for the price listed on this page

Version 4.16 makes Barcode Basics the only major barcode software to include an action for Apple’s Automator as standard. Non-technical users can now create their own simple apps, workflows, scripts and services to make barcodes on macOS, without writing a single line of code. Anything you can do in the Barcode Basics app, you can do in its Automator action. Barcode Basics can still be used as a standalone macOS app as usual.

Barcode Basics can create a range of common barcodes in many file types, including eps (vector format), jpeg, gif and png. The app directly supports:

  • Code 11
  • Code 39
  • Code 128
  • EAN 8
  • EAN 13
  • EAN 13 (GS1)
  • EAN 14
  • UPC A
  • UPC E
  • Interleaved 2 of 5
  • ITF 14
  • GS1 DataBar Omnidirectional
  • GS1 DataBar Stacked
  • GS1 DataBar Stacked Omnidirectional
  • GS1 DataBar Truncated
  • GS1 DataBar Limited
  • SSCC-18
  • ISBN
  • ISSN
  • ISMN
  • USPS Postnet
  • USPS Intelligent Mail
  • USPS Planet
  • Royal Mail (UK)
  • Royal TNT (Netherlands)
  • Japan Post
  • Deutsch Leitcode
  • Deutsch Identcode
  • Pharmacode
  • Two-track Pharmacode
  • Italian Pharmacode
  • PZN7
  • PZN8
  • MSI Plessey

Most importantly, Barcode Basics is priced at just $15.99, making it easily the cheapest pro-quality barcode creator and automator on the Mac App Store. Compare that to other barcode apps such as Barcode X ($392), Barcode Producer ($299), Barcody ($69.99) or Softmatic Barcode Factory ($79.95) and its easy to see why Barcode Basics is catching on fast – especially amongst the graphic and packaging design communities. However despite its low price tag does not mean that it’s low on features. Barcode Basics includes all the functions needed by graphic designers and art workers to produce industry standard barcodes which will work well on press.

System Requirements:

  • OS X 10.11 or later
  • 64-bit processor
  • 0.6 MB

Barcode Basics 4.16 is $15.99 USD (or equivalent amount in other currencies) and available worldwide through the Mac App Store in the Graphics & Design category.

macOS New App Release – SSD health Check for NVMe

Product Announcement – B-Eng of Fehraltorf, Switzerland has released SSD Health Check for NVMe, the newest version of their solid state hard drive utility for macOS. SSD Health check is a tool developed for the newest generation of MacBook Pro that make use of NVMe storage devices. According to Christian Schaffner, general manager of B-Eng, SSD HEalth Check for NVMe is the only app that is able to reveal S.M.A.R.T. of NVMe storage devices in MacBook Pro relying on Apples standard drivers only.

“We have seen several hacks to retrieve S.M.A.R.T. data for the NVMe storage devices in the new MacBook Pro, most of them using kernel extensions programmed on Linux,” explained Christian Schaffner, general manager at B-Eng. “All of the methods we analyzed led at least partly to unexpected results, from showing plain wrong numbers like thousands of write errors to unexpted shutdowns counting several hundreds, some methods can even force the user to reinstall macOS in order to get the computer running smoothly afterwards. For our own purposes we needed a reliable tool running in its natural environment, which means using standard drivers only and installed on any MacBook Pro from the shelf without any hassles. Noticing the on-going discussions on many forums and blogs we decided to make our tool available to the public. This update contains minor aesthetical corrections on how data are presented.”

SSD Health Check is available on the homepage of B-Eng for $4.99 (USD). While SSD Health Check for NVMe may run on older versions of macOS, it has only been properly tested on macOS 10.12 or newer.

macOS New App Release – ScaleMaster 2

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Product Announcement – RoGame Software of Rochester, New York has released ScaleMaster 2 (v1.0.3), a fantastic new upgrade to the venerable ScaleMaster app for macOS. Version 1.0.3 has been re-designed from the ground up with a very modern interface and includes a lot of new functionality like scale documents, much improved MIDI support, scrollable instruments, full screen mode and much more.

ScaleMaster 2 lists over 200 scale types in all keys and shows them parallel in music notation and the selected virtual instrument. Scales are listed by name in a master list that also contains additional information like type. The notation display is automatically updated with each new selection. Light text coloring as well as the scale type indicator help easily distinguishing between different types.

The most important new addition to ScaleMaster 2 are exercises, because playing along with an exercise is sometimes more useful than merely looking up a scale for reference. To provide a useful working environment for reference, as well as exercise related tasks, ScaleMaster 2 introduces scale documents. Each document stands for a specific scale, instrument and exercise – all of which can of course be changed at will. This makes an easy task of going back and forth between different scales and you can share them with a friend or student. And switching between reference and exercise modes just takes a click or key stroke.

As before, scales can still be played back in reference mode. In exercise mode however, there is an optional count-in; the playback speed can be controlled and then there is the new exercise generation interface. It allows the creation of of exercises based on range, initial direction and scale pattern. Exercises also offer a reverse option so any pattern created can be played bi-directionally. Having a reverse mode is incredibly useful for practicing because getting a scale under one’s fingers in one direction may take some effort. Tagging on the reverse a bit later then only takes a mouse click.

For improvising musicians the relationship between chords and scales is of major importance. This is an area where ScaleMaster 2 can be of great assistance to freshen up one’s vocabulary and maybe introduce a couple of more colorful and less common scale choices. The main tool for this is chord matching. ScaleMaster lists over 40 of the most common chord forms which can be selected to filter out scales that don’t match all chord tones. The resulting list of available scales for a particular chord can then be compared and played to get an idea of their overall flavor.

ScaleMaster 2 natively supports 9 different instruments which are implemented as interactive, virtual instruments. All instruments can be shifted into different positions and are a lot of fun just to play around with. They are realized in fantastic detail with position markers, fret indicators, octave indicators on the piano instrument and discreet note name overlays to indicate fingering options and note locations. The piano instrument features a full set of 88 keys and all string instruments have 24 frets. There are several options to position necks or keyboard and note highlighting is done in a very understated manner.

ScaleMaster 2 also offers several new MIDI-related features. It supports all class-compliant MIDI controllers and implements virtual MIDI. That way it is possible to play ScaleMaster’s instruments via MIDI controller, even record small parts as exercise and use a properly configured DAW for playback if so desired.

Instruments: Banjo, Bass, Cello, Double Bass, Guitar, Mandolin, Piano, Viola, Violin

Quick Features:

  • Document based
  • All common clefs
  • Over 200 different scales
  • Semitone indicators
  • Chord/scale matching
  • Exercise Generation
  • Adjustable positions for all instruments
  • Adjustable tuning for all string instruments
  • Support for left-handed players
  • Full general MIDI instrument library
  • Virtual MIDI

Extensive documentation

Scales are elementary to all musicianship. They provide flavor and harmonic structure, but are at the same time fairly complex. Designed for the beginning musician as well as the professional, ScaleMaster has become a staple app for many musicians as an excellent tool towards advancement in theory and scales in particular. ScaleMaster 2 adds improvements in almost every aspect and makes an easy task of looking up a scale in seconds, getting a taste of its flavor and practicing it.

Language Support: ScaleMaster 2 is localized into Chinese, Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish languages.

System Requirements:

  • Mac OS 12.2 or later
  • 64-bit processor
  • 25.3 MB

Pricing and Availability:
ScaleMaster 2 (v1.0.3) costs $19.99 USD (or equivalent amount in other currencies) and is available worldwide exclusively through the Mac App Store in the education and music categories. Educational discounts are available.

 

macOS New App Release – GoArt 1.0

Product Announcement – Everimaging of San Francisco, California has released GoArt 1.0, their entertaining photo editor for macOS. GoArt allows anyone to instantly transform any photo into a work of art by applying templates based on the work of the masters of fine art. GoArt currently offers over 40 different filters, with plenty more on the way.

GoArt uses “fine art” presets based on the artistic styles of history’s most admired artists, including Van Gogh, Monet, and Picasso. The app can also create works based on various styles of art, such as Impressionism, Pop Art, Expressionism, Structuralism, and many more. GoArt includes 43 templates, with more set for release in the future.

GoArt takes advantage of the latest emergent AI technology-driven artistic effects, allowing users to customize their favorite photographs by transforming them into “fine art,” inspired by the styles of history’s greatest masters of fine art. It uses AI-based apps that are not really filter overlays at all, but algorithm-based style transfer effects that fundamentally alter the structure of the photo. The app offers anyone the chance to create a masterpiece in the style of their favorite art master or artistic style.

Features:

  • Based on AI technology
  • Supports multiple platforms
  • Transforms any image into a work of art
  • Over 40 filters available, with more on the way
  • Create images based on popular styles of art
  • Create images based on the styles of famous masters of the craft
  • No Internet connection needed for image processing
  • Create high-definition images up to 8-megapixels in size

GoArt is the world’s first AI artistic app which allows anyone to export an HD image and make it possible to print their own works. GoArt not only lets users take their favorite images to another level, it offers them an absolute advantage by allowing them to export their images in a high-definition format, up to 8-megapixels in size. This allows printing the new images in a format suitable for framing, perfect for sharing with family and friends.

Unlike other image processing apps of this type, GoArt does not require an Internet connection to process images. All the work is done on the Mac. Users don’t need to be connected to the Internet to create and save their works of art. Local processing means faster and more efficient processing, with no worries of being unable to create or save an image due to a lost Internet connection.

In addition to the GoArt app for macOS, Everimaging also offers free iOS, Android, and web-based versions of the app. This allows users on almost any platform to make use of the powerful effects offered by the GoArt app. Users can visit the GoArt website to get a demonstration of the powerful effects offered by GoArt before purchasing the app for their Mac.

Art Effects Include:

  • Fauvism
  • Early Autumn
  • Sponge Dabbed
  • Byzantine
  • Expressionism
  • Realistic Watercolor
  • Van Gogh 1
  • Van Gogh 2
  • Van Goh’s Cafe
  • Abstractionism
  • Impressionism
  • Pop Art
  • Picasso
  • Ukiyoe
  • Christmas
  • French Coffee
  • Watercolor
  • Comic Etch
  • Rust
  • Superstring
  • Ink Art
  • Structuralism
  • Pastel
  • Magic Cube
  • Joy
  • Color Life
  • Surrealism
  • Sketch
  • Rich Colored
  • Cubism
  • Color Fantasy
  • Pointillism
  • Pointillism 2
  • Blue
  • Dadaism
  • Crayon Shin-chan
  • Artist’s Sketch
  • Metaphisics
  • Winter
  • On Fire
  • Sketch 2
  • Water Color 2
  • Defoliation

System Requirements:

  • OS X 10.6.6 or later
  • 64-bit processor
  • 180 MB

GoArt 1.0 is $29.99 USD (or an equivalent amount in other currencies) and is available worldwide exclusively through the Mac App Store in the Entertainment category. iOS, Android, and web-based versions of the app are also available.

macOS New App Release – Screen Commander

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Product Announcement –  Alien Orb Software of New York, New York has released Screen Commander 1.0, a new utility application for Mac. Screen Commander is a simple utility application geared toward users with multiple displays connected to their Macs. It enables users to quickly and effortlessly blank other displays while watching a movie, playing a game, or focusing on some work on a particular screen.

Screen Commander lives in the menubar as a small icon and provides screen blanking options at the click of the mouse. Blank out other screens when they are not needed and quickly unblank them again on demand.

Features:

  • Blank/unblank the current screen
  • Blank/unblank other screens (while leaving the current one as is)
  • Blank/unbank all screens at once
  • Use a convenient popup menu on any blanked screen to access the same commands available in the menubar

System Requirements:

  • macOS 10.12 (Sierra) or later
  • 64-bit processor
  • 5.5 MB

Screen Commander 1.0 is freeware and is available exclusively through the Mac App Store in the Utilities category.

You Only Need 5 Email Folders

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I am constantly reading articles that make suggestion for improving productivity. I came across the article “The Only Five Email Folders Your Inbox Will Ever Need” a few weeks ago and have been trying (not too successfully) to follow the advice given.

The essence of this article is that you should create four new folders into which you sort your email leaving your inbox empty. The five folders are:

  1. Inbox – the existing folder where all new email is placed
  2. Today – stuff that needs to be handled today
  3. This Week – stuff that needs to be handled this week
  4. This Month (or This Quarter) – stuff that needs to be handled this month
  5. FYI – information stuff that I might want to refer to later

So I have created those additional four folders (Actually, my FYI folder has subfolders for specific subject areas as well). So how have I fared with this approach?

I look at my new mail 2-3 times a day. If it is something I can deal with in 5 minutes or less, I do that immediately (generally). I try to sort the remainder into the folders suggested. Even after weeks of trying this, today was the first day I actually completely processed my Today folder. I guess “out-of-sight-out-of-mind” comes into play.

I have also found that my initial sorting has not always been correct. I have too often placed email in the Today folder when it should have been in This Week or even This Month.

This approach does require changing your habits so that processing these folders becomes an automatic routine. The FYI folder I find useful as I had been saving email in a number of separate folders. I moved those to the FYI folder and now have that reference information in one spot.

Is this a process that will work for you?

macOS New App Release – Pomodoro Time Management 4.1

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Product announcement – Independent development studio desappstre {eStudio} of Madrid, Spain has released Pomodoro Time Management 4.1 for macOS, their app that helps users to improve their productivity using one of the most effective management method in personal or pair working environments. The app is highly configurable in aspects like time for breaks or tasks, notifications, pomodoro series, all of it in a beautiful and detailed interface.

Inside Pomodoro Time Management users will find:

  • TouchBar support on the new MacBook Pro
  • Reports to compare your productivity
  • Beautiful graphs to check your progress in a blink of an eye
  • Customize task time
  • Customize short and long break time
  • Choose to play a sound or not when a break or a task has finished
  • Set how many pomodoros (tasks) are a Work Series
  • The pomodoro (task) timer can be paused/resumed/reseted
  • Session and Goal counters can be reseted

In this new release users will find:

  • Say Hi! to Pomodoro Today Extension in your Notification Center.
  • Print or save as PDF your reports.
  • And yes, a new app (retro badge) icon.
  • Bug fixed and minor improvements.

System Requirements:

  • macOS 10.12 or later
  • 64-bit processor
  • 6.2 MB

Pomodoro Time Management 4 is only $2.99 USD (or an equivalent amount in other currencies) and is available worldwide exclusively through the Mac App Store in the Productivity category.

macOS New App Release – Deliver 2.6

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Product Announcement Zevrix Solutions of Toronto (ON) Canada has released Deliver 2.6, a feature update to its file transfer solution for remote and local destinations. Deliver lets users send files over the Internet and local networks with automatic email notifications, file compression, delivery history and other powerful time saving capabilities. It supports FTP, Google Storage, Amazon S3, WebDAV and other remote and intranet services.

The new version introduces support for FTPS connection which helps ensure secure, reliable and auditable file transfer. FTPS (also known as FTP-SSL) is an extension to the commonly used FTP protocol that adds support for the Transport Layer Security (TLS) and the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) cryptographic protocols.

Deliver quickly gains popularity as file transfer tool of choice at ad agencies, printers, recording studios and publishing houses. Users can create hot folders or drop files onto the program icon, and the items will be sent automatically with customizable email confirmation issued upon delivery. The files can be easily retrieved through the link in notification email.

Deliver offers the following key features:

  • Send files to FTP, SFTP, WebDAV, Amazon S3, Google Storage and locally
  • Automatic variable email notifications
  • Hyperlink to file for instant download by recipients
  • Compress files automatically
  • Create lo-res PDF on the fly and attach to e-mail
  • Delivery history

Deliver can be purchased from Zevrix website for $19.95 (USD), as well as from Mac App Store and authorized resellers. Trial is also available for download. The update is free for licensed users of Deliver 2.x. Deliver requires Mac OS X 10.5-10.12 (some features require OS X 10.7 or later).

macOS New App Release – Forklift 3.0

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Product Announcement – Independent developer BinaryNights of Budapest, Hungary has released Forklift 3.0, the important update to their popular file manager and file transfer utility for macOS computers. Forklift allows Mac users to copy files to and from SFTP, FTP, WebDAV, Amazon S3, Rackspace CloudFiles, AFP, SMB, and NFS remote volumes. The dual-paned file manager also offers Dropbox support, remote editing, multiple file renaming, and much more.

Forklift 3.0 took two years develop and spent six months in beta testing. The app has been completely rewritten in Swift, allowing the BinaryNights developers to take complete advantage of all the new features offered in macOS Sierra. Forklift brings users the most stunning interface ever offered by any of the company’s apps.

Features:

  • Dual Pane file view
  • Dropbox Support
  • Favorite Sync keeps favorites, rename presets and more synced across multiple Macs via Dropbox
  • Disklet allows users to mount remote servers and make the, appear in Finder as local drive
  • Sync Browsing
  • macOS Sierra Tabs
  • Search for files and directories on local or remote drives, filtering by name, extension, and more
  • App Deleter completely uninstalls any application
  • Remote Editing offers the ability to remotely edit files
  • Dark Mode reduces eyestrain and makes it easier to concentrate on the work at hand

Forklift 3.0 allows users to remotely connect to SFTP, FTP, WebDAV, Amazon S3, Rackspace CloudFiles, AFP, SMB, and NFS remote volumes. This makes it easy for anyone to manage their files across networks. Users can quickly connect to multiple servers at one time, allowing them to copy between servers with drag-and-drop ease.

Web developers and other remote-based users will love Forklift’s syncing features. Users can compare local and remote folders, automatically identifying new, modified, and deleted files, allowing them to synchronize files with the click of a mouse or trackpad. The app’s preview functionality displays important file information at a glance, and allows users to inspect PDFs, text & images files, and other popular document types. Quick edits can be made to files, whether they reside on a local drive or a remote server.

Forklift’s Multi Rename feature is an invaluable tool that allows anyone to rename a large number of files on both local drives and remote servers. Users can change case, replace text, add dates or sequences, and more. Multi Rename operations can be combined in a saved preset for later use.

The app’s Quick Open feature allows anyone to access their favorite files, directories, device and menu commands. It also offers the ability to open a selected file with a targeted application, or apply a saved Multi Rename preset on a group of files or folders.

System Requirements:

  • OS X 10.11 or higher (macOS Sierra 10.12 compatible)
  • 64-bit processor
  • 94.6 MB

Forklift 3.0 is usually $29.95 USD (or an equivalent amount in other currencies) for a single-user license and is available worldwide through the Forklift website. For a limited time, BinaryNights is making Forklift available for $19.95. A family license is also available for $29.95 (usually $49.95) and a small business license is available for $49.95 (usually $99.95) during the promotion. Discounted upgrades are also available to owners of previous versions of Forklift. A free trial is available for download.

macOS New App Release – Sound Control 2

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Product Announcement – Static Z Software of Rochester, New York has released Sound Control 2 for the Mac. With this release Sound Control builds on its already great feature set. Sound Control 2 adds per-app EQ enabling more tweaking than ever before. In addition, Sound Control 2 also adds customizable audio routing. Now users can reroute audio from their apps to any audio device.

Sound Control enables users to easily and quickly change app volumes as well as selectively apply a EQ to their app’s audio. Sound Control does this by adding a software mixer to the menu bar of your Mac. In addition to the volume mixer, Sound Control also adds a software EQ to your audio output allowing users to easily tailor the sound of their Mac’s audio to their specific taste or to properly calibrate to the frequency response of their speakers.

Features:

  • Per-app volume control, including mute
  • Per-app EQ with 10 or 31 bands
  • Per-app audio routing
  • Easily controlled via menu bar item and hotkeys
  • Adds software and keyboard control to Displayport, HDMI and other audio devices

Compatibilty:

  • Mac OS X Mavericks (10.9)
  • Mac OS X Yosemite (10.10)
  • Mac OS X El Capitan (10.11)
  • Mac OS X El Capitan (10.12)

A demo of Sound Control is available and costs $10 (USD). The demo can be found at Static Z Software online.