Tech Know: An Apple a day

Mac gadgets galore were on display at Macworld 2002. Takanori Kobayashi reports.

Proving that cool computers will always attract crowds, the 12th Macworld Conference & Expo/Tokyo 2002 drew more than 200,000 visitors to the Tokyo International Exhibition Center from March 21-23.

The expo began with a keynote speech by Apple Computer CEO Steve Jobs, who introduced the latest Mac OS X, a new iPod music player, Bluetooth hardware and software for the Mac. Jobs also used the occasion to deliver some unwelcome news—that Apple had decided to raise the price of its three new flat-panel iMac desktops by ¥20,000 in Japan. The price hike brings the suggested retail price for the high-end model to ¥244,800.

Jobs attributed the increase to higher component costs. Nevertheless, it's rare for a personal computer maker to raise the price of a new product just two months after its launch. Apple took the wraps off the iMac in late January in the US, and then in Europe and Asia.

Steve Jobs

But despite that bad news, all eyes were on the new iPod, a PDA that has a 10GB hard drive and includes software allowing it to store and manage up to 1,000 contacts. The new iPods are available with customized names or messages laser-engraved onto the back. They can store up to 2,000 CD-quality songs. "You can listen to your music continuously on six round-trip flights between San Francisco and Tokyo and never hear the same song twice," Jobs told 6,000 fans.
The iPod's new Contact software enables users to transfer contact lists from Entourage, Palm Desktop or Mac OS's Address Book into the iPod Contacts folder. The AppleScripts, created in AppleScript Studio, will automate the process of extracting and importing contact listings from your computer into an upgraded iPod.

The following AppleScripts are available from Apple's website:

Address book to iPod (74K)—This application will import the contact data from the Mac OS X Address Book into your iPod. This application lets you sort contacts by last or first name. Version 1.0.1 now adds support for Japanese systems.

Entourage to iPod (60K)—This application allows you to import the contact data from the Microsoft Entourage application into your iPod. The application offers the ability to sort the contact names by last name or first name. Version 1.0.1 now adds support for Japanese systems and cell, pager and fax numbers.

Palm Desktop to iPod (74K)—This application will allow you to import the contact data from the Palm Desktop application into your iPod. It offers the ability to sort the contact names by last name or first name.

Users should note that these applications are designed for a computer running Mac OS X 10.1 (with Dev Tools CD) or 10.1.2 and higher.
Jobs was particularly enthusiastic about Bluetooth. Apple isn't the first company to popularize it as a way of connecting mobile devices and peripherals to a desktop computer, but it's aiming to simplify a potentially confusing technology for end users. "Now we're offering a Bluetooth solution that actually works and is easy to use," said Jobs.

Bluetooth is an emerging wireless networking standard designed to enable computers and various peripherals to communicate with each other at speeds up to 1MB over short distances (about 10 meters or less). PDAs, cell phones, printers and other devices are beginning to support Bluetooth. In addition, Bluetooth-enabled computers can communicate with each other.
Fans also flocked to see Jobs demonstrate how the Mac OS X edits movies, music, photos and DVDs. Emphasizing the term "digital hub," Jobs said personal computers will be at the center of the digital hub in the future. "Mac OS X is the best system to make it happen, and iMac is the best for consumers," he said.

While Windows dominates the PC market, Apple's Macintosh is still favored by those working in publishing, printing, video producing, designing and CG industries, said Jobs. Crowds swarmed around booths displaying Mac-related products and services for use with Mac OS X. The Macromedia, Adobe Systems, Microsoft and Symantec booths were all inundated, as was a troubleshooting booth.

The expo also offered 50 sessions designed for creative professionals: publishers, video producers, web designers, 2D/3D graphic designers, constructors, architects or those engaged in medical services and so on.

Photo credit: Takanori Kobayashi

B u y  i t  o n l i n e !
101 Unuseless Japanese Inventions: The Art of Chindogu

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774: Too hot to trot
770-71: High touch Nokia
766: Bone up on Nihongo the smarter way
762: Catch-up game
758: Pocket powerhouse
754: Corn Celly
750: Solar sensation
746: Branding boiled down
742: Virtually real
738: Assisted roaming
734: Apple attack
730: Miike mouse
726: Touch me, I want your data
722: Aargh—pirates scuppered
718-19: Movies on your Ninty
714: Red PSP
710: Sun trap
706: Battery-powered chat
702: Brave new world
698: New dog, new tricks
694: Unwired, unnecessary
690: SK Telecom hooks a whopper
686: Pioneer’s friends are indeed electric
682: Sony snapper shakes things up
678: Gotta hand it to Fujitsu
674: Gentlemen, take your pics
670: Scale speedster
666: In living color
662: Peace of mind
658: Samsung’s swollen snapper
654: Much more than ringtones
650: Where in the world
646: Where there’s a Will(com)
641: Buckets of bits
638: Sony’s small stunner
634: Sony coming back off the ropes
630: High def, high stakes
626: Fully loaded
622: Heavyweight handset
619: Greener and cleaner
614-615: All on board
610: Talkie Walkie
606: Gadgets, gear and good things…
603: Viva la Revolution
599: Bigger just rocks, K?
595: Double data dose
591: Turtle-tastic Takara
587: Spies like them
583: Remotely entertaining
579: Tick tock, ya don’t stop
575: Two-in-one
571: Camera superba
567: Tourist-tastic
563: Square eyes
558: Small screen
554: Muscle power
550: Fat off the lamb
546: Long lens
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540: Picture perfect
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538: High spirits
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536: Six of the best
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534: Soup’s on
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532: Worth its wait?
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530: Rich itch
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528: Telly addicts
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526: Future perfect
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524: Digital delights
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522: Chips with everything
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520: Coming soon…
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518: Ides of March
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516: Coming up roses
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514: What you need
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512: A kind of hush
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509/10: Wrapping up 2003
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508: All kinds of everything
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506: Apple picking
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504: Cleaning up
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502: Show and tell
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500: Corn-y for you
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498: Bits and pieces
J Mark Lytle delivers the latest and greatest from Japan's high-tech wonderland.
497: Gadgets ‘r’ us
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494: Talkin' 'bout a revolution
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492: The right stuff
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490: Good to go
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488: Summer breeze
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486: Space odyssey
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484: Air time
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480: Keep your cool
Cathy Frances scopes out some high-tech devices for the dog days of summer.
478: All blogged up
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476: Future Wave
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474: Small wonders
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472: Paws for thought
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468: Photo finish
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466: Keitai kool
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464: Mini mart
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462: Internet to go
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460: Green Machines
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456: Strange days
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454: Match point
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452: Mobile classroom
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450: Future space
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448: Virtual battlefield
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446: Fair game
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444: Clothes encounters
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442: Back lighting
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440: Get the picture
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438: ABU Robocon 2002
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436: Thin is in
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434: Nihon-GO!
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432: Byte size
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430: Lost in translation
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428: Robots on the pitch
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426: Class action
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424: Book binge
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422: An Apple a day
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420: Geek speak
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418: Hot commodities
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416: Smart appliances
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413: Internet on air
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412: Spy story
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410: PDA Personalities
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408: Design intervention
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406: 2002 Tech must haves
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404: Broadband Business
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398: High-tech hospital
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396: Big game hunting
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394: Wire tap
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392: You've got mail
390: School's in session
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388: Diaries go hi-tech
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386: Why Upgrade?
Kristen McQuillin explains when to upgrade
384: Gadgets to go
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382: Hot software
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380: Peripheral vision
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378: In safe hands
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376: Kill spam
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372: In for repair
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370: Game for a laugh
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368: Knowledge is power
Empowering women in technology
366: Generation next
Cutting-edge keitai
364: MacWorld
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362: Online translation
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360: DIY Star Wars
Recreate your own sci-fi epic at home
358: Network gaming
Play games with friends on your keitai
357: Bad it online
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355: Robotic revelations
Japanese robots leading the way
352/3: Get the point
beenz.com - a new kind of points system
350: Talk is cheap
Internet telephone technology
348: Tsukumo
RoboconMagazineKan
346: Digital Stadium
Innovative computer-generated art on NHK
344: Tokyo Game Show
The latest releases at this fall's show
342: WonderBorg
The mechanical insect
340: Fun and games
There's a new game console in town...
337: Dream on
Tokyo Dream Technology Fair 2000

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