Apple iLife 09 Enhancing your iLife

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Apple iLife 09 Enhancing your iLife

Apple iLife ‘09’s fancy features promises to make working with images and videos a breeze.

Announced at this year’s Macworld, iLife 09’s new flashy features caught the attention of the Mac community.

Although it wasn’t as groundbreaking as most Mac fans were hoping for, it still has a few impressive features such as face recognition for photos and image stabilisation for videos. For the purpose of the review, we will mainly focus on the new features of iPhoto ‘09 and iMovie ‘09.

HIT AND MISS: The face detection algorithm for Faces occasionally goofs up and detects non-human objects, such as the cushion in the picture above, as a face.

EASY-TO-USE: iMovie retains the same user interface though it now comes with a few nifty new features like image stablisation and precision editing.

Pros: Faces and Places helpful for managing photos; easy to create slideshows; iMovie’s intuitive drag-and-drop interface.

Cons: Face recognition can be improved; Places interface a little clunky; audio editing in iMovie hasn’t improved.

iLife ‘09

(Apple Computer)

Multimedia creation suite

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard)

Price: RM299 (bundled free with new Macs)

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BigPond

BigPond

Of all the 3G hardware on display this month, the BigPond USB modem is the most impressive. It’s also the biggest, but it’s eminently pocketable, and best of all there are no parts to lose.

We had no problem finding a signal in Sydney, but those on the fringes of BigPond’s coverage may be able to solve problems with the included accessories. A USB extension cable is included, plus an external antenna complete with Velcro pads to mount on your laptop’s LCD.

The BigPond application for managing your connection is easy to use. The software includes at-a-glance details of which operator you’re connected to (useful for international roaming), signal strength, and data sent and received during your current session.

Information such as connection speed and long-term data downloads, included with Vodafone and Optus’ software, isn’t shown, though, so you’ll have to visit your account on BigPond’s website for full information.

Unfortunately, BigPond’s data plans are the most expensive on test. BigPond is the only 3G provider to offer data plans larger than 7GB, but its 10GB plan is no substitute for a home broadband connection at a staggering $130 a month.

Even its modest plans are more expensive than most. Where most providers’ monthly charge for a 5GB cap is around $40, BigPond charges an astonishing $90 for just 3GB.

So what does that extra cash get? Apart from the hardware, BigPond claims it covers more of the population with its network, and our speed tests suggest BigPond is the best bet for those concerned with speed.

At the time of testing, BigPond and Optus were the only networks to have rolled out high-speed HSDPA across their 3G networks, with a theoretical maximum speed of 7.2Mb/s download.

In our speed tests, BigPond was the fastest: averaging over 4Mb/s in our download test. The fastest we saw was a shade over 5Mb/s, near enough to BigPond’s claim of a burst speed of 6Mb/s.

For most users though, there’s little appreciable difference between a 1.5Mb/s connection and a 4Mb/s connection. If you frequently download large files you’ll notice BigPond’s speed increase, but you’ll also hit your data cap – and BigPond’s extortionate 25c per gigabyte excess fee – sooner.

If you live in a metropolitan area with coverage from another ISP, sacrificing a little speed will save you a lot of money.

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Airplane Abducted By UFO

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Airplane Abducted By UFO

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The airplane was approaching Davis Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson Arizona at approximately 4:15PM MST on August 8th, 2009. We first witnessed the object hovering in a locked position, southwest of the base.

We thought it was a balloon, until it dropped in elevation a few thousand feet in less then a second. At that point I ran inside and grabbed my digital camera and rushed outside in time to catch the object approaching the airplane from behind. Unfortunately the microphone barely works on the camera, from being dropped so many times, so you can’t hear much. But at least there is a little. The object made no sound, completely silent.

There was an attempt to take the video to the media, unfortunately, every affiliate rejected the video due to lack of evidence. There was no report in the city of a missing airplane, nor did the Air Force Base report anything missing.

Many of the news affiliates did confirm that they had received calls on August 8th from various sources, claiming they had seen a UFO. They said that they receive calls on a regular basis dealing with UFOs all the time, as well as many hoax videos, and there was no reason to believe my video was anything different. They refused to believe that the Air Force base would withhold information about a missing airplane.

I’m hoping that more videos surface to confirm this object was real. We live within a mile of the base, so I don’t know how many people witnessed the event.

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