4th > February > 2005 Archive
Why Napster will be a fully-integrated flop
CommentNapster today graced the world with a "revolutionary new way to enjoy music" by starting something called the Napster To Go service. As we all know, revolutions often deliver unintended consequences. So let's have a look at where Napster's service may lead.
Municipal Wi-Fi access schemes unjust - report
Government run, city-wide hotspots will unfairly tax residents for a service that only a handful will use, according to Steven Titch, co-author of a recent report denouncing the ambitions of Philadelphia, Las Vegas, New York, and others to become Wi-Fi Meccas.
Maxtor to axe more US jobs
Maxtor's recently announced decision to abandon its 2.5in notebook hard drive project helped keep the company in the red, to the tune of $70m (28 cents a share) during its fourth quarter. The three months to 25 December 2004 yielded revenue of $1.03bn, down 11.9 per cent on Q4 2003's $1.17bn .
Guinea-pigs terrorise motorists with cans of link spam
LettersMobile phones really are determined to rub our species from the face of the Earth. If they aren't giving us tumours, they are making us drive like we are drunk, or like we are very, very old. But can we trust the research that tells us these things? Is this a problem, or are we all just getting paranoid. In ten years, will we be able to leave our houses without a government-issued protective coating of cotton wool? And should we really trust guinea pigs behind the wheel of a car?
Elpida licenses 'DVD on a chip' memory tech
Elpida has licensed a technology that applies the same technique used in rewriteable optical discs to non-volatile memory chips.
WorldCom directors $54m lawsuit deal unravels
A deal by ten former directors of WorldCom top to cough up $18m (£9.5m) of their own cash to help settle a class action lawsuit following the collapse of the telecoms company in 2002 appears to have unravelled.
Gov.uk web sites get thumbs up for usability
A new analysis of government websites has found a "demonstrable" improvement in usability in many sites. Overall, design and navigability are improving, and a more consistent approach between sites is emerging. But older sites are not well maintained, and email response times are unacceptably slow.
Casino brands eBay cleavage woman
Online gambling outfit Golden Palace yesterday took temporary charge of the substantial assets which it recently secured for £422 on a eBay auction, viz; the legally-displayable portion of 27-year-old Angel Brammer’s 42GG breasts. For fifteen days the Glaswegian lass will proudly display Golden Palace's temporary tattoo - applied by a local artist who must think that Xmas has come early.
MSN Messenger worm seeds zombie networks
A worm spreading via MSN Messenger is turning infected Windows PCs into zombie drones. The Bropia-F worm spreads by offering "sexy image files" to IM contacts of infected users.
HP iPaq smart phone pics leaked
Fewer than 24 hours have passed since we wrote about HP's iPaq Mobile Messenger smart phone - and already pictures and a tentative model number of the machine have leaked out.
Is UML past its sell-by date?
UML started life as a notation. Back in the days of CASE there were dozens of different approaches to modelling: Rumbaugh, LSDM, Schlaer-Mellor, Booch, Information Engineering, Bachman, Coad/Yourdan, Merise and a bunch of others. All of these espoused a different approach and all of them used different notations with different diagrams.
Sony names US PSP launch date, price
Sony has at last come clean and said when it will ship the PlayStation Portable in the North America. Yes, 24 March will be PSP Day.
Ireland faces €50m e-voting write-off
A lack of public confidence in e-voting means that Ireland may be forced into writing off its €50m investment in electronic ballot systems.
Qwest courts MCI for telecoms take-over
MCI - the telco formerly known as WorldCom which emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in April last year following its damaging$11bn (£5.8bn) accounting scandal - could be the target for a take-over.
So what is a technical effect? Find out at UK Patent Office workshop
The Patent Office is to hold a series of workshops that will discuss the definition of what constitutes a technical effect; a major point of conflict in the debate about software patenting in Europe.
Motorola damns WiMAX with faint praise
CommentThe real question about Canopy Wireless, now launched - 30 months late - in Europe, is not merely "what took you so long?" but "Why are you singing from Intel's song book about regulation, but not about WiMAX?"
JK Rowling warns of Harry Potter phishing scam
Author JK Rowling this week warned fans of the likelihood of further scams after an offer to sell an e-book version of the next installment of the Harry Potter saga was exposed as a con. A site called www.harrybooks.info (since closed) touted a purported e-book version of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, which is released in July.
Bulldog unveils PAYG unbundled broadband
Bulldog has launched a hybrid subscription-cum-PAYG broadband service which it claims will suit net users who only want to pay for the time they spend online.
BOFH: When desk lamps attack
Episode 4"Yeah, I was just ringing because I can't install an application on my machine."
Ask Jeeves profit rise leaves market cold
Ask Jeeves has posted a steep increase in revenue in Q4, boosted by better advertising sales, and the acquisition of Interactive Search Holdings.
Dyslexic drivers slow to react, claim boffins
Dyslexic drivers are slower to react to traffic signs, a study by the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim has shown. The researchers report that dyslexia impairs a driver's reaction times "as much as a moderate drinking session", according to a New Scientist report.
Buy our products, Sanyo tells employees
Troubled Japanese conglomerate Sanyo has asked its own employees to open their wallets and buy the company's products, CNET reports. Sanyo this week reported a $170m loss for Q4 2004 and is still smarting from an October earthquake which forced closure of its chip facilities.
E-gov to cost Europe €4bn+
This year will see rapid growth in government spend on IT across Europe, according to research from IDC, as the deadlines for the eEurope Action Plan approach. For the public sector, the 2005 objective is that Europe should have "modern online public services".
ViewSonic NextVision N3000w 30in LCD HDTV
ReviewYou may have read about HDTV in the news, but just to fill you in, broadcast High Definition TV is only a year away in the UK. Well that's not entirely true, as a Belgian company has already set up a European service known as HD1 which is available now but only to those that don't mind realigning their older dishes to point to the Astra 1H satellite cluster, writes Jalal Werfalli.
AOL loses two million punters
America Online (AOL) - the internet division of media giant Time Warner - lost two million subscribers in the US last year as it continues to face increased competition from rivals.
Indian teen kidnaps self to buy Nokia mobe
A 15-year-old from Lucknow, India, who faked his own kidnapping because he wanted cash to buy a mobile phone is safely under lock and key after police traced his menacing calls home using Caller ID, Lucknow Newsline reports.
Fake tsunami appeal website terminated
A bogus website masquerading as that of the Disasters Emergency Committee has been taken down. The enforcement action follows warnings yesterday (3 February) that the site, decuk.org, which claimed to be collecting funds to help victims of the Indian Ocean tsunami disaster was not to be trusted.
Aigo P750 20GB MP3 Player
ReviewAigo, a relative newcomer to the MP3 player market, clearly wants us to think its P750 is a classy product. It's packed in a heavy-stock cardboard box held shut with a magnetic clasp. Within, the player lies nestled inside a mock-velvet cushion looking not unlike a jewellery box. It comes with a leather carry-case.
eBayers go mental for Burberry-clad Chavmobile
Those readers looking for a new set of wheels with a bit of Chav street cred need look no further than the current eBay auction for a Burberry-branded Chavmobile - the "original (one ‘n’ only) Goldie Lookin Chain Chavalier", as the suitably chavesque blurb puts it.
Verity Stob - programming's funniest memoir
ReviewAs anyone who's ever done it professionally knows, programming computers isn't as glamorous as they make out in the movies. Take for example, Independence Day, where the hero lashes together a program in 30 minutes and conjures up a piece of code that saves the world. Have you ever seen anyone do in that real life? And did you bill them for the full hour?
Flamers roast Stalkers for 'timebomb' shut-down
Mail server software firm Stalkers has come under fire from some of its own users over a license enforcement action that left scores of admins scrambling to restore services. As the clock rolled over on 1 February 2005, flagship Stalkers CommuniGate Pro mail server software executed a worldwide "timebomb" shutdown, designed to pull the plug on users whose licences had expired.
Reboot daily, Tablet users advised
Microsoft has publicly acknowledged the Tablet PC bug that eats up the computer's memory until the machine crashes. The out of control memory leak remains unchecked while Redmond's Red Adairs grapple to put a lid on the blow-out. But there's no word yet of exactly when a fix will be issued.