This month's Free Sample Shareware is no longer available.
Chipmunk Basic 3.5.2
Chipmunk Basic is a freeware old-fashioned Basic Interpreter, accelerated for the PowerMac, yet still compatible with old 68k Macs running System 6. Features include support for a simple sprite graphics engine, sound, MacinTalk speech, MacTCP, AppleScript, Drag&Drop and OOP programming.
Delete Web Caches 2.0
This AppleScript program will get rid of your Netscape and Internet Explorer cache folders and replace them with folders of the same name. It will then delete the log files for these two programs as well as Anarchie, Fetch and Eudora and other programs. If you study the code, you'll discover ways to delete other caches as well.
This JPEG picture makes a lovely desktop pattern for your Mac. Light blue in color, with the smiling Mac theme, it reminds you why Macintosh is so much more pleasant to work with than fragmenting windows falling out of the clouds. Free
ErrorFinder for Macintosh Version 1.0 is a simple program designed to give a brief description of the meaning of all those error codes that pop up from time to time. Free beta.
Excalibur is a Macintosh spelling checker for LaTeX documents. You can optionally turn off LaTeX parsing, so Excalibur is a good plain text spelling checker too. Free
OTSwitcher 1.0 (Demo Version)
OTSwitcher is a Control Strip module that allows you to quickly switch Open Transport's TCP/IP and OT/PPP configurations. It will work with either Apple's Control Strip or Ammon Skidmore's Extension Strip. The Control Strip can also be used to select different OT/PPP configurations. If you connect to more than one ISP, or use alternate numbers with an ISP, you can create a configuration for each and quickly change which is selected from the Control Strip. $1
PPP Menu 2.0
The new name for FreePPP Menu, it provides
Program Switcher v4.3.1
Program Switcher is a convenient timesaving control panel that allows you to switch between the applications running on your System 7 or greater Macintosh via a simple two-key keystroke. It was inspired by the same function found in "Windows," but has been improved and transformed into a unique and fully configurable control panel that makes switching applications on the Macintosh as simple as pressing a couple of keys. $10
QPict is a graphics browser/viewer. It helps you organize and find graphics on your harddisk, CD-rom etc. The viewer part can currently display PICT, JPEG, GIF and Startupscreen file formats. All other filetypes are supported by using helper applications. You use QPict to organize your graphics the same way you organize files in the Finder by using drag and drop. $30
Squishy Pack is a set of four Kaleidoscope color schemes, and three Desktop Pattern clippings to enhance your Mac OS windows and desktop. The four color schemes are variations of the original Squishy, and were created in response to requests from some people who found the original's yellow text and highlights a bit too bright. Free
Synk is a backup/synchronization program that can resolve aliases and archive old files. It runs on all Macintoshes except Mac Plus, Classic and PowerBook 100. You can backup a folder full of aliases, making it simple to modify your backup or synchronization strategy by dropping file or folder aliases into the defined folder. It is just as easy to distribute synchronized files throughout a PowerBook's hard drive by synchronizing two folders containing aliases. Any number of file types, creators and file endings may be skipped. Obsolete files and folders can be archived into a folder. $10
TCP CC 1.1.1
This simple control strip module is for use with Open Transport and allows one to change between TCP/IP configurations without going through the control panel. If you have more than one way to connect to the Internet with your Mac (like PPP and Ethernet), you should make configurations for each method and switch between configurations instead of changing the setting in the default configuration. $3
Twilight is a color scheme for Greg Landweber's Kaleidoscope 1.5 to1.6 control panel, and it was created for everyone who likes sunsets and pastel colors. It will not work in the older Kaleidoscope 1.0 or 1.0.1 versions. Twilight includes custom-designed system folders, and a Twilight trash bag written into the scheme. The author also included an extra loose Twilight folder with desktop textures. $5
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A warning from Michael Lowry:
The Microsoft Internet Configuration Wizard that accompanies MSIE 3.01 changed my OT/PPP configuration without asking or warning me; it overwrote the existing configuration's telephone number, login name and password.
If you install Mac OS 7.6.1 and setup a RAM disk, then try to shut the system down, the screen goes blank, and the system freezes on some Macs. Apple is working on a solution which will be available in Mac OS 8. In the meantime, downgrading to Mac OS 7.6 will resolve this. At the point where the freeze occurs, it is safe to turn off the computer.
My new job means supporting folx on WINDOZ (boo, hiss) as well as Macs. I am amazed at how much insite I get on the Mac by looking at Windoz. And how much common mistakes are NOT peculiar to either platform. Take data entry...
(No, YOU take data entry - this has GOT to be some of the least user-friendly work you can do on a nice desktop computer like a mac. But SOMEBODY has to do it!)
Customer called today and complained that the password entry dialog does not work - keeps telling her that her login is invalid. But I dug a bit: "What did you do, can you do it now?" "Ok, here is the dialog, I am putting my user-ID in the user-ID field. Bingo! there is the warning: Invalid...." "Slow down! You didn't get to enter the password, did you?" "No" "Go back, enter the user-ID and DON'T HIT RETURN!" "OK" "Now, hit tab until you get to the password field" "OK - it didn't warn me yet" "Now type in the password" "OK" "Hit return" "Hooray! It accepted it this time!"
Typical Data Entry programs allow you to tab between fields. Often a RETURN tells the program that data entry is finished. Wouldn't it be nice if these were standard rules? They are not. Sometimes RETURN works, sometimes not. But next time something goes wrong, try TAB instead. Most important, learn the rules which come with the package.
And write down your password in a safe place!
Like I say - I learn a lot about Macs by using Windoz. One advantage of Windoz (or disadvantage) is that when you make the last window go away, the program does, too. On the Mac, if you make the last window go away, everything still is running in background. Just look under the app menu (the icon in the right end of the menu bar). VERY common mistake of Mac users - assuming that it aint running if it aint visible. I call that dinosaur mentality - out of sight, out of mind.
To quit a background application with no open windows, switch to it in the app menu, then quit with command-Q or Quit on the File menu.
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My choices, only. These do NOT include beta releases. You might check out Version Tracker for more.
5500-6500 L2 Cache Disable
QuickDraw 3D 1.5.1
Adobe Illustrator 7.0 - now shipping
Connectix Speed Doubler 1.3.3 - for those still using the 1.x version
Connectix Virtual PC 1.0 - software to turn your mac into a Windoz machine.
other sources credited where known. Trademark credits, where omitted, remain with their owners - updated 18 Jan 98