9th > June > 2004 Archive

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PalmOne blinds Treo smartphone for Sprint

Sprint today unveiled a camera-less version of the Treo 600 for its CDMA network in the United States, priced at $599. The device is targeted at businesses nervous about employees taking pictures of sensitive information, or even more sensitive situations. Sprint will continue to offer a version with camera, which it calls the PCS Vision Phone.
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World safe from nanobot 'grey goo'

Eric Drexler, the man who made nanotechnology synonymous with 'grey goo', now says there is no need for self-replicating machines at all. So the world is in no danger of being mined indiscriminately for all its carbon, and we can all breath a sign of relief.
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UK chemists detect air fingerprints

Chemists at Leicester University have developed a new electronic nose, a piece of kit that can identify the components of a sample of air, including perfume or an individual's breath, in less than a minute.
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Join the software development revolution

Site Offer A revolution in software development is underway which is shaking up how software is built. The new methodology includes Extreme Programming (XP) and the Unified Process (UP), united under a common theme: iterative and agile development.
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Microsoft confirms EC appeal

Microsoft has confirmed that it is taking the EC back to court to appeal against the €497m fine imposed on the company. It also wants to overturn the EC competition ruling that it must offer a version of Windows without its Media Player and supplies competitors with more information about the internal workings of Windows.
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MS hatches June patch batch

Microsoft released a brace of security alerts last night. Neither is particularly serious.
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Beatles mull online music store

The Beatles are in talks to make their music available legally for download on the Internet for the first time.
Cat 5 cable

Storage buoys InTechnology

Network and storage specialist InTechnology increased turnover by 42 per cent to £223.5m for the year ended 31 March 2004 and credited increased demand for storage services for the growth.
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Scottish dealer jailed for chip VAT fraud

A Scottish businessman has been sentenced to four years in jail for failing to pay VAT on computer chips he imported from EC countries, sold to UK customers with VAT included and then failed to pass the tax onto the Revenue.
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Apple security patch problems fixed

Register readers experiencing problems with Apple's Security Update 2004-06-07 can take heart that the update does work, and its apparent inability to cope with some exploits can be solved using a little Terminal trickery.
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EC relaunches Intel antitrust probe

The European Commission has re-opened its investigation into allegations of unfair trade practices made against Intel.
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Commissioner 'increasingly alarmed' by ID card scheme

David Blunkett's ID card draft bill came under fire yesterday from Information Commissioner Richard Thomas, who told the Home Affairs Committee ID cards inquiry that his views on the subject had changed from healthy scepticism to "increasing alarm." Thomas, who intends to publish a critique of the draft next month, attacked the draft for lack of clarity or any clear statement of purpose, and pointed out that the real issue was not the individual's ability to identify themself with a piece of plastic, but the nature of the information to be held on the central ID register.

BT to save £1bn a year with IP network

BT is to migrate its national phone network to an Internet Protocol (IP) platform. The move will take five years to complete and should produce savings of £1bn a year for the UK's dominant fixed line telco.
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The curse of MSN strikes another MS VP

It was five years ago today... There was a time when the life expectancy of an MS exec could apparently be measured in days. It was all a bit like Caligulan Rome with bloody assasinations and mysterious disappearances, although Bill Gates never, to our knowledge, appointed his favourite horse to the board. Of course, this being the 20th century, errant management could not be obliged to take hemlock or fall on their sword. Chillingly, though, a far worse fate awaited - they were moved to MSN awaiting execution:
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Czechs indulge in Wi-Fi swapping

Europe in Brief Wi-Fi has reached the Czech Republic, but with one remarkable difference, according to Prague Post. Ad hoc groups such as CzFree.Net and companies like WideNet and My Net are allowing hotspot owners to swap Wi-Fi signals. You can get online for tariffs as low as 200 to 500 Kc ($7.50 to $19 per month).
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German fined €8000 for Kazaa uploads

A 23-year-old man has become the first music sharer to be successfully convicted in Germany for uploading songs to Kazaa.
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BT to trial fibre-to-the-home

BT is begin limited trials of fibre-to-the-home to assess its technical and commercial viability.
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Sony - BMG wedding hit by EC spoiler

Sony and Bertelsmann Music Group (BMG) have denied that they work together to fix CD prices and that a merger of the two record companies would reduce competition.
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Apple rebuked over G5 speed-lead claim - again

Apple today had its wrist slapped for running a series of magazine adverts which falsely alleged that its Power Mac G5 was the "world's fastest computer".
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Oracle discounts revealed in court

Oracle was in court yesterday trying to overturn the Department of Justice decision that it can't buy PeopleSoft.
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Amazon turns camcorder on shaven nudists

We at El Reg are fully aware that 97 per cent of all digital stills/video/phone camera purchases are made by foaming-at-the-mouth perverts who use them purely to capture sunbathing beach nudes and upskirt shots.
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Report raps Wi-Fi providers for 'location inflation'

Wi-Fi hotspot aggregators' coverage claims have been taken to task after independent research has revealed that the way they count access locations and covered sites diverges widely.
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Police to monitor chat rooms

Police around the world are to join forces to monitor Internet chat rooms in a bid to deter paedophiles from "grooming" young victims online.
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Nokia takes bullet for hijack victim

A South African man has proved that yakking on your mobile while driving may not be the threat to road safety many claim it is. In fact, it could save your life.
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Apple launches liquid-cooled G5 Mac

Apple today updated its Power Mac G5 desktop line, equipping each machine with two processors, as expected, including a top-end model clocked to 2.5GHz.
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Norwich Union axes 950 IT jobs

Norwich Union is to axe some 950 IT jobs to reduce costs and make the insurance firm more nimble in "changing market conditions".
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The Wi-Fi explosion: a virus writer's dream

Opinion With the consumer Wi-Fi explosion, launching a virus into the wild has never been easier and more anonymous than it is today. Like a sneeze in a crowded subway, it's hard to find the human source of the latest viral infection. On the Internet it's not much different. The people who write these nasty little programs and release them into the wild almost never get caught. Why? The answer is easy, but it's also a sort of technical nemesis: there's simply no way to track these people down.
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PC Card maker touts 'seamless' Wi-Fi, 3G access

Option, the developer of Vodafone's 3G add-in card for notebook PCs, has launched a version of the product that also support Wi-Fi and GPRS network technologies.
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Global P2P jihad claims success

The number of music tracks available through file-sharing networks has fallen 27 per cent compared to the same period last year.
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Paedophiles face credit card blacklist

Paedophiles who use credit cards to pay for access to child abuse sites risk having their credit cards withdrawn. National Crime Squad Assistant Chief Constable Jim Gamble said UK police were working with banks and credit reference agencies on procedures to blacklist offenders. The same credit cards sometimes feature in prosecution of repeat offenders.
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Medion MDPPC250 PocketPC GPS Bundle

Reg review During 2003, German electronics manufacturer Medion came from nowhere to wrest a significant share of the European PDA market from PalmOne, HP, Sony, Dell and co. The secret of its success was no revolutionary new PDA technology, but the simple move of offering an own-brand PocketPC with a separate GPS antenna and navigation software.
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IT workers' morale hits rock-bottom

Staff morale among IT workers is at rock-bottom as companies have cut budgets and ditched staff in a bid to ride out the prolonged downturn in the industry. So says IT research and advice outfit Meta Group which reckons that companies should do more to lift the spirits of workers. Not only will staff be chirpier, such a move would also help improve the productivity of companies.
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Airlines ground online ticket price gouging

Price discrimination in the sale of airline tickets online is no longer a problem in Europe, the European Commission confidently asserted today.
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Apple: no 3GHz G5 'any time soon'

Apple CEO Steve Jobs' promise to announce a 3GHz Power Mac G5 within a year of the processor's launch will not be made, a senior company staffer has admitted.
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SCO trumps Sun's open source Solaris bid

With so few friends in the world, The SCO Group made the obvious decision today to go after one of its largest behind-closed-doors allies - Sun Microsystems.
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AMD bags Chinese giant

AMD has worked its way into the heart of the Chinese computer market, announcing a deal today with leading manufacturer Lenovo.