Soundtrack Pro is a multitrack audio editor intended to be used as part
of a video workflow, though it’s equally adept at standalone audio
projects. It was once sold separately, but for the last few years, it’s
been available exclusively as part of the Final Cut Studio and Logic
Studio bundles. The latest incarnation, version 3, offers a wide range
of fine-tuned interface tweaks and a few new tricks that will make
anyone who produces pro audio take notice.
We really like free stuff. Any time we go to the mall, we spend half
our time at the Apple store, and the other half sitting in the free
massage chairs at Brookstone. However, you don't often get expensive
things for free on the internet (those "free ipod" scams don't count). MacHeist
would like that to change.
In 1993, Billy Idol released a concept album called Cyberpunk,
which shipped to rock critics with a floppy disk of interactive
artwork. We can’t recall a single track from the album, but we do
remember being sure that this was the future of music. iTunes LP
reminds us of that--and of years spent pouring over liner notes before
there was Google search.
The biggest challenge of the Web is finding information you want. For a
while, bookmarks sufficed, giving users an easy way to quickly return
to their favorite sites. As bookmark lists grew, Really Simple
Syndication (RSS) became the preferred tool of Internet power-users. An
RSS reader makes it easy to track a large number of sites, but
eventually, you’re subscribed to so many feeds that finding the good
stuff becomes a challenge. Enter Fever, a Web-based RSS reader that
tries to solve this info overload by sorting your news by importance.
Combining elements from Zuma and Breakout, Luxor has you firing your
own colored balls at advancing chains of other colored balls. You’re
trying to remove balls from the chain by matching three or more of the
same color. The chains move along tracks that twist and turn and double
over each other, so you can’t always get a clear shot. And if you don’t
clear them fast enough, they reach the end of the track--and you lose.
A triumph of game design, Braid mixes 2D platforming gameplay,
ingeniously crafted puzzles, time manipulation, and a melancholy story
open to multiple interpretations, beautifully packaged in stunning
hand-painted artwork. It’s not an incredibly long game, it doesn’t have
a multiplayer mode or online play, but what’s here is more than enough
to suck you in, keep you engrossed, and make you really use your brain.
Taito’s Bust-a-Move, also known in Japan as Puzzle Bobble, resembles
the 1996 Mac puzzle game Snood. You fire colored balls at a puzzle of
colored balls, trying to match three and make them disappear. The balls
gradually move down the screen, and if they reach the bottom before you
clear the board, you lose.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince places you in Harry’s robes as
he progresses through his sixth year at the famous wizardry school,
Hogwarts. At its core, Half-Blood Prince is basically a well-polished
minigame collection with flashy franchise backing. The graphics aren’t
terrible, especially when bumped up to the highest resolution, though
they may seem a tad dated. The terrific music is pulled straight from
iTunes 9’s Home Sharing lets you drag-and-drop content between up to
five computers on your home network after you tie each to your iTunes
Store account. SuperSync obliterates Home Sharing’s limitations,
letting you sync and share music and videos between as many machines as
you like, either over the local network or the wide-open Internet.