Month: May 2011

Review: Bento 4

Database needs on a company or medium-size department scale can be fulfilled with a FileMaker or FileMaker Server license. Data warehouses need Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle or MySQL Enterprise. And your own personal needs are well served with a copy of Bento 4. Whether you want to manage a wine cellar or create a database backup of your iPhoto or Aperture photos, Bento 4 can handle it. With its new printing capabilities, location support, and more powerful search functionality, Bento 4 is slowly moving upwards and getting closer to what many people use FileMaker for.

Review: Parallels Desktop 6 for Mac

Running Windows XP or Windows 7 on a Mac is a breeze: just install Boot Camp or a Virtual Machine and you’re off. Virtual Machines are more efficient if you want to exchange files and other data between operating systems. There are two commercial VMs available: VMware Fusion and Parallels for Mac. I tested the latter and found it to perform better than the former in more than one way.

Review: Creating HTML 5 code fast and simple with Hype

Creating a web page or site used to be simple: you would enclose sentences in HTML code, and the code would only differ based on structural decisions: a paragraph, a heading or a list perhaps. Later on, when web page designers wanted to improve the looks of a page, they added Cascading Style Sheet (CSS) code. Meanwhile, HTML evolved and became XHTML in its last iteration. And now we are entering the HTML 5 era, an era in which we can move objects around on the page with ease. With ease, you say? With an application like Hype, perhaps, but not if you have to hand code.

Permanence and Handling of optical archive media

The market of optical media — writable CDs, DVDs and Blu-Ray discs — may see a decline, but that doesn’t mean these media will be history any time soon. They are invaluable for archiving multimedia content, and medical and administrative data. Cloud storage is fine, but there are problems with ownership, copyright, and for how long the data remains stored. These issues are irrelevant to users of optical media. They worry more about longevity.

A look at the 2011 iMac range’s most powerful new feature: Thunderbolt

Thunderbolt is said to be the fastest way to get information in and out of your Mac and peripheral devices. At 10 Gb/sec, Intel’s Thunderbolt technology gives you high-speed data and display transfers upstream and downstream in full duplex — in each direction simultaneously. It uses a single cable to connect the Mac to a maximum of six devices. Most important of all, those Thunderbolt port(s) available on the recently released iMacs may soon turn the humble iMac into the most expandable Mac available.

Review: Elgato tivizen transports television signals over WiFi

Elgato did it again. I for one didn’t think anyone could add useful improvements to an already well-filled range of TV tuner products that are all aimed at receiving and playing TV on a Mac or a PC. Of course, I missed the wireless magic word. tivizen is a wireless TV receiver and it’s its own WiFi hot spot. My AirPort module equipped Mac Mini was quite happy when I turned on tivizen, and I was happy too because I needn’t do anything special and the signal was just as clear and clean as with Elgato’s wired products.