Third Parties Crowd Macworld Aisles

Scores of third party developers, from ATI to OpenLink, hawked their Apple-compatible wares at Macworld.

While Apple Computer Inc. CEO Steve Jobs introduced a swarm of products and technologies during his keynote at Macworld Conference & Expo in New York this week, third-party developers and manufacturers were hawking their compatible wares on the show floor.

In the past year since the general release of Apples Mac OS X, a new breed of developer has joined the more traditional booths for graphics, video, productivity and consumer software -- those offering Unix-based networking, administration and development tools.

OpenLink Software of Burlington, Mass., was at the show, showing off an update to what it calls a "collective ODBC ecosystem for Mac OS X." This product includes ODBC drivers for "all major databases," an ODBC SDK for creating ODBC-compliant applications and ODBC Driver Manager, a runtime environment.

With Apples recent introduction of Xserve, the companys long-awaited dedicated server, Hanover, N.H.s Dartware LLC made its Mac debut. The company announced that their InterMapper network monitoring and alerting application will ship next month and come bundled with the Xserve. According to the company, InterMapper runs headless and offers remote viewing and configuration through Dartwares Intermapper Remote.

In a move that might weaken the market for VNC clients, Microsoft s Macintosh Business Unit released the Remote Desktop Connection Client, which it says will allow people working on their Macs to access and manage remote Windows-equipped PCs. The software, which will be available for free download beginning July 31, will enable access to "Windows-based data, applications and network resources," the company says.

4D Inc. showed off WebSTAR 5.2, which the company is badging as a significant update to the Mac OS X server toolset. New features include a new mail server that supports SMTP/POP and IMAP protocols as well as filters out spam and viruses. Its scheduled to ship in September, with upgrade hinging on what version is being upgraded. The company also announced 4D Mail, a stand-alone version of WebSTARs mail server. Its also due in September.

REALbasic 4.5 from REAL Software is an update to the development tool, adding a new vector graphics engine, new functions for QuickTime and more. Upgrade pricing begins at $99.95.

In the absence of heavy hitters Adobe and Macromedia, Ottawa-based Corel Corp. previewed its CorelDRAW Graphics Suite 11, targeted at small businesses and home use. The suite will include, when it ships in late July for $529, CorelDRAW 11, a complete vector- and sprite-based illustration application.

ATI Technologies took the wraps off their next-generation video cards, getting the jump on rival nVidia, which is not expected to announce its next products for months. The Radeon 9000 Pro and 9700, expected to hit the Mac in "late summer and early fall," both support dual displays via Apple Display Connector (ADC) and Digital Video Interface (DVI) connectors. The Radeon 9000 Pro will have 64MB of DDR memory; the Radeon 9700 will have 128MB.

In a first, CMS Peripherals announced that it would produce Mac OS X-bootable external hard drives. The ABSplus series will ship in August with pricing beginning at $299 for the 20GB pocket-sized drive or the same price for a 40GB full-sized drive.

Touting their Mac OS X drivers, Canon USA debuted the CanoScan LiDE 20 and CanoScan LiDE 30 USB-based flatbed scanners, both with single-pass scanning and the ability to scan to PDF. The former has 600x1200 dpi optical scanning resolution while the latter boasts a resolution of 1200x2400 dpi. The company also showed the S530D, S830D and S330 Bubble Jet printers. All are on tap for late July to August.

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