Apple, Google and Amazon have reached an accord that allows the U.S. companies to avoid fines for allegedly misleading people in the European Union to make purchases in mobile phone apps that are initially free to download, reports The Wall Street Journal.

Italy’s Antitrust and Competition Authority won’t levy any more charges against the companies if they quit using the word “free” to describe titles with in-app purchases. Last year the European Union called on Apple and other companies to reform their use of the “freemium” model in which apps are free to download, but then later require payments that often get charged to credit cards by default. The main concern is games on smartphones and tablets that allow adults and children to rack up vast credit card bills by making such purchases.

“Consumers could be led to think, contrary to reality, that a game is completely free and therefore they don’t know ahead of time the game’s true cost,” Italy’s Antitrust and Competition Authority said in a statement. “It appears also that there is a lack of information regarding how to exclude or limit the possibility of making a purchase inside the app.”

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Feral Interactive says DiRT 3 Complete Edition, a off-road and rally racing game, is out now on the Mac App Store. A Steam version for the Mac, which includes online multiplayer, will follow shortly.

Originally developed and published for PC and consoles, DiRT 3 Complete Edition is the latest of Codemasters’ racing games to be brought to the Mac by Feral.

Here’s how the game is described: “DiRT 3 Complete Edition draws on the greatest cars from over 50 years of rallying to capture the intense thrill of off-road racing. Players can test their speed, skill and nerve in a globe-trotting series of electrifying events as they race to mud-spattered glory in the hazardous world of all-terrain motorsport.

“Featuring six high-octane disciplines including Rally, Rallycross and Gymkhana, a freestyle event hosted by rally star and YouTube phenomenon Ken Block, DiRT 3 Complete Edition comes with all the available add-on content, including 18 additional cars and 12 new routes at two locations set at the iconic Monte Carlo region and an X-Games Asia event featuring multi-car Rallycross racing in downtown Tokyo.

On the Mac App Store, DiRT 3 Complete Edition retails for US$29.99. Prices will vary slightly for versions of the game sold via other stores. For more info go here.

Minimum system requirements call for a 2.0GHz Intel Mac with at least 4GB RAM, 256MB or better graphics card, and Mac OS 10.9.5 or later. The game supports NVIDIA 1xx series graphics cards or better, the Intel HD4000 series or better and AMD 4xxx series or better. The NVIDIA 3xx series is not supported. A Steam account will be required to access online multiplayer.

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U.S. Senators Barbara Boxer and Rand Paul have announced the “Invest in Transportation Act of 2015,” a proposal that would allow companies such as Apple to bring foreign cash reserves back to the U.S. at a significantly lower tax rate while using the proceeds to replenish the Highway Trust Fund, reports AppleInsider.

The bill, which has yet to be introduced, allows companies to voluntarily return their foreign earnings to the United States at a tax rate of 6.5% instead of 30%.  The rate is only for repatriations that exceed each company’s average repatriations in recent years, and funds must have been earned in 2015 or earlier. Companies have up to five years to complete the transfer.

The Invest in Transportation Act extends the Highway Trust Fund, which pays for investments in our roads, bridges, and transit systems, ensuring that states and local communities have the certainty they need to plan and construct transportation infrastructure projects all across the country. The bill says: “A modern transportation system is the foundation for a strong U.S. economy and maintaining and improving our roads, bridges, and transit systems is necessary to ensure our nation’s global competitiveness. Transportation is and should be a nonpartisan issue and taking action to save the Highway Trust Fund and invest in our aging infrastructure is strongly supported by businesses, labor, and transportation organizations.”

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Apple has released iTunes 12.1 for Mac OS X Yosemite. It introduces a new iTunes widget for the Notification Center that lets you see what song is playing, skip ahead, and favorite.

Also, when listening to iTunes Radio, you can purchase the song that’s being played within the widget. Additionally, iTunes 12.1 promises performance improvements when syncing an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.

iTunes 12.1 can be downloaded via the Software Update Mechanism in the Mac App Store.

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Brooklyn Effects has released six new lighting plug-ins exclusively for Apple’s Final Cut Pro X users. Each product is designed to help users create a distinct lighting effect in their project.

These effects include: lens flares, light leaks, stage lights, volumetric lighting, shutter streaks, and anamorphic streaks. You can create a custom lens flare for any scene in Final Cut Pro X with the Skyline Lights plugin. Users can drag and drop the lens flare layer above their footage and use the control point to match the position and angle of the light source in the scene.

Editors can create beams of light in their scene with the Times Lights plugin. Users can drag and drop the filter onto their footage in FCPX. Then, use the control points to customize the source and direction of the beams.

FCPX editors can also create contemporary-looking flashback scenes that don’t rely on aged footage. The Flashback Effect gives film the shutter streaks, color, and glow of flashbacks found in many recent science fiction and action movies.

Users can add anamorphic light refractions to their film with the Light Streak Filter from Brooklyn Effects. This filter was designed to allow users to emit add streaking rays of light from the bright areas in their scene, eliminating the need for composite footage.

Finally, editors can set the stage for their film in Final Cut Pro X using the 3D lighting tools from Brooklyn Effects. This collection comes with spot lights, point lights and lens flares that can be positioned and angled using on-screen control points.

The lighting effects require Mac OS X Mavericks or higher and  Final Cut Pro X version 10.1.3 or newer. These FCPX lighting effects are available in the Brooklyn Effects online store for US$19.95.

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Here’s a list of the latest software updates for Mac OS X compatible apps.

° Apple has rolled out Remote Desktop 3.8, an upgrade of the remote Mac administration app. Available for US$79.99 for new users at the Mac App Store the upgrade boasts improved Mac OS X Yosemite compatiblity.

It also offers an enhanced user interface, better viewing for multiple clients, sending copies by a “Copy Items” feature, and fixed viewing remote clients in full screen mode. Remote Desktop lets system administrators manage multiple Macs over a network or the Internet, includes remote monitoring and screen viewing, handles activity auditing, and more. Version 3.8 is a free upgrade for registered users.

° InfoLogic has announced MathMagic Lite 9.0, an update to their free equation editor for Mac OS X.

MathMagic Lite was developed specifically to help both mobile, and desktop users write and share mathematical expressions and technical information more easily and quickly. Version 9.0 supports user configurable Vertical Fences, Horizontal Fences, Over and Under Bars, more Frame types, adjustable fence height and width, and more.

MathMagic Lite 9.0 requires Mac OS X 10.6. It’s available for download from the MathMagic website.

° DEVONtechnologies has updated all editions of its intelligent information and document manager DEVONthink as well as the smart notebook DEVONnote.

DEVONthink and DEVONnote are designed to help users classify and organize documents effortlessly with unique artificial intelligence. Free and recommended for all users, version 2.8.3 now allows users to select and copy text from Quick-Look-based views, and brings even better artificial intelligence accuracy as well as further improvements and bug fixes.

DEVONthink 2.8.3 now allows users to select and copy text from Quick-Look-based views. This includes Microsoft Office or OpenOffice documents. OpenOffice documents also open no longer internally but in their default application when being double-clicked. The update adds support for images when converting Markdown to RTF, and improves Wiki-linking, e.g. for Japanese Katakana.

Finally, version 2.8.3 fixes synchronization bugs and other more minor issues. The updates bring more optimizations for OS X Yosemite and improve the performance and the reliability of the application, too, says Eric Bohnisch-Volkmann, president of DEVONtechnologies.

DEVONthink Pro Office costs US$149.95, and DEVONthink Pro is $79.95. DEVONthink Personal is priced at $49.95, and DEVONnote at $24.95

All editions of DEVONthink as well as DEVONnote require Mac OS X 10.7.5 or later (in the Mac App Stor: OS X 10.9 or later). They can be downloaded from DEVONtechnologies online and be test-driven for free before they need to be properly licensed. DEVONthink Personal and DEVONnote are also available in the Mac App Store; DEVONthink can be purchased in bundles with DEVONagent for an attractive bundle price in DEVONtechnologies’ online shop.

° Tension Software has released Easy Markdown 1.5, an update of the Mac OS X tool that lets you create web pages by writing plain text. It’s optimized for Mac OS X Yosemite.

Version 1.5 let you copy HTML in a click of the body, full page or full page with CSS embedded. It also has improved internal functionalities and various bug fixes.

Easy Markdown costs US$4.99. It’s available at the MacApp Store only.

° Zevrix Solutions has launched Graphic Inspector 2, an upgrade to its quality control solution for images and vector graphic files for Mac OS X 10.7 or higher.

Graphic Inspector checks multiple files for potential problems according to user’s workflow requirements. The software provides graphic professionals of any trade with the compete info on images and vector graphics, saving the time and hassle of checking them manually. Version 2 introduces revamped user interface, improved previews, faster processing and more.

Graphic Inspector 2 can be purchased from the Zevrix website for $39.95, as well as from authorized resellers. The upgrade is $20 for licensed users of version 1 (free if purchased after Sept. 1, 2014). Graphic Inspector 2 is free with purchase of PDF Checkpoint or InPreflight Pro for Adobe InDesign. A demo is available for download. Graphic Inspector requires Mac OS X 10.7-10.10.

° Maintain has served up Cocktail 8.1.2 Yosemite Edition, a new version of its Mac OS X utility that’s compatible with Yosemite. This version contains major improvements on the “Clear System caches” procedure, fixes compatibility issues with Safari Cookies cookie manager and adds OS X 10.10.2 Yosemite compatibility.

Cocktail is a general purpose utility for OS X that lets you clean, repair and optimize your Mac. Its features are arranged into five categories that help you manage various aspects of your computer.

Cocktail 8.1.2 (Yosemite Edition) requires OS X Yosemite to run. Cocktail (Mavericks Edition) for OS X 10.9, Cocktail (Mountain Lion Edition) for OS X 10.8 and Cocktail (Lion Edition) for OS X 10.7 are available for download from the Maintain website.

When unregistered, Cocktail runs in demo mode and will expire after the tenth launch. Registration is US$19 for a single user license or $39 for a family license that covers up to five computers.

° Softobe has released FoldersSynchronizer 4.2.1, an upgrade of their tool to sync and backup on Mac OS X.

FoldersSynchronizer lets you sync and backup files, folders, disks and boot disks. It provides options like Timers, Multiple Folders, Filters, Exclude Items, Auto-Mount local and remote volumes, the ability to launch your own AppleScripts, the ability to set how to resolve conflicts, the ability to execute an incremental or an exact copy, the ability to include locked files, a preview panel, log files, and more.

On the Exclude panel in FoldersSynchronizer 4.2.1 you can now click on a row of the list and choose an hidden file or an hidden folder. This will let you exclude folders.

FoldersSynchronizer 4.2.1 is compatible with OS X 10.9 or higher, including Yosemite. It costs US$40 for new users.

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Here are some of the latest apps available at the Apple App Store for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

2K, Turtle Rock Studios, and Cat Daddy Games have teamed up for Evolve: Hunters Quest, a companion game to the 4v1 shooter, Evolve. The free Evolve: Hunters Quest is a Match-3 puzzle combat game.

Dragon Game Studio has announced Snake Hun. The free game lets you hunt for a series of fantasy snakes. Start with searching the colorful worlds for camouflaged snakes, and once a snake is spotted, you tap, swipe and do everything in your power to capture it.

Creaceed has released Hydra. It’s an US$2.99 photo capture app f with support for HDR, sensor noise removal, and hi-res (32MP) shooting.

Fingerlab has introduced DFX for the iPad. It’s a real-time, quad multi-effects processor that’s available for 50% ($1.99) off for a limited time. DFX also doubles as a sound design machine.

mTouchLabs has launched Backup Call Log. The $4.99 app allows you to backup your call history from your device to a Mac in .xls format. You can archive and maintain records of all your call history at a single location in an Excel file. You can filter call info by sender, incoming, outgoing or sort calls by time and date. A detailed help guide is available within the app.

Natsume has unleashed Ninja Strike, the sequel to the mobile title, Ninja Climb for iOS devices. In the free game, you run, fly, and slash enemies to retrieve stolen treasures.

Barnstorm Games has unveiled Pro Pinball: Timeshock, based on the classic Pro Pinball series of hits from the nineties. The $2.99 game has been completely redeveloped for iOS by the original developers.

Marobi Entertainment has developed A-Maze-In. In the free game, you embark on a quest as Mino, a teen Minotaur who attempts to rescue his true love. Your goal is to help Mino defeat five challenging bosses.

Top Cool Fun Games has rolled out Grand Theft Dual Getaway. In the game players control two cars at the same time to race through oncoming traffic, picking up nitrous bottles, and escaping the police. Grand Theft Dual Getaway is free, but does tout in-app purchases.

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