7th September 2005 Archive

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Wikipedia eclipses CIA

Wikipedia is fast becoming the number-one online resource for web surfers hungry for context about breaking news, in what must be a sad comment on the ability for traditional news media to keep its audiences well-informed.
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Snowball fight officially possible on Mars

Mars is covered in huge quantities of ice and snow, according to NASA researchers, but the watery stuff is well mixed-in with the red planet's sandy dunes.
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Apple touts iTunes' UK 80% market share

Analysis Let there be no doubt that High Street music retailers Virgin and HMV to the UK's digital music market is shaking the tree. Even the formerly lofty Apple has felt it necessary to issue a public statement stressing its market leadership.

ATI signs Chartered as graphics chip maker

Claims that ATI has signed UMC as a foundry partner may prove premature. The graphics chip maker yesterday said it had brought in Singapore's Chartered Semiconductor Manufacturing as its second chip producer.
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Ireland celebrates first anti-spam conviction

Ireland's Data Protection Commissioner, Billy Hawkes, has secured his first conviction for a breach of the country's anti-spam law. A similar law exists in the UK but the UK Commissioner, Richard Thomas, has taken no such action to date. Ireland is also considering stiffer penalties for spammers.

Dixons downbeat as UK sales dip

Dixons is continuing to suffer from the effects of weak consumer spending in the UK and remains "cautious", the high street electricals giant said today.
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US battery boffins build cow dung fuel cell

Cow dung has provided human beings with fuel for millennia. Now, thanks to research conducted by Ohio State University, it could become the foundation for future notebook power plants.
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Brain tissue shortage threatens research

A shortage of healthy brains being donated for medical research is impeding the development of treatments for diseases such as Parkinson's, scientists at the British Association Science Festival in Dublin heard yesterday.
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EC warned to tread softly on web TV

The European Commission should be cautious about extending the Television Without Frontiers Directive (TVWF Directive) to cover the provision of online audiovisual content services, according to trade group the E-Business Regulatory Alliance.
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HP bangs data protection drum

HP stumped up a swathe of storage management gear at SNW Europe this week, with the aim of making SM painless, if not exciting.
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Alienware readies ET-inspired MP3 player

Gaming PC specialist Alienware is to hop on the MP3 player bandwagon this Autumn with an extraterrestrial-inspired music machine of its own.
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Hurricane website is IE only

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has not exactly won hearts and minds with its ability to manage an emergency. The agency, and its boss Michael Brown, has been widely slated for its handling of the post-Katrina disaster in the Southern US.
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Yahoo! assists Chinese dissident conviction

Updated Media watchdog Reporters Without Borders has accused Yahoo! of going out of its way to help Chinese authorities to convict a "dissident journalist".
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Watchdog brings Bulldog to heel

Bulldog was mauled on prime-time TV last night about the abysmal service it's delivered over the summer.

Quantum leaps into new tape era

Quantum is replacing its entire low and mid-range tape automation product range with a revamped autoloader and a new PX500 series of rack-mount libraries. The new devices will support both SDLT and LTO drives, and store from eight to 200 tape cartridges.
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US 'world genius' touts 6.8GHz 'quantum-optical' CPU

We're unsure* as to how we should take the claims of Atom Chip Corporation, which maintains it will show off a 2TB diskless notebook based on a 6.8GHz "quantum-optical" microprocessor at next January's Consumer Electronics Show.
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Natural selection fighting to survive in the US

A mere 26 per cent of people in the US believe that life on Earth has evolved without any input from a supreme being, according to new figures from The Pew Research Center.
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Burning Man, meet Drowning Man

The writer had found an elusive internet connection, and reaching beyond exhaustion was finding words to record the madness around him:
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Google Maps reveals Katrina devastation

Google Maps has added post-Katrina satellite images of New Orleans which demonstrate pretty effectively why the Big Easy will be out of action for some time.
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Ofcom caps LLU charges

Ofcom wants to set a price ceiling for fully unbundled local loops as part of plans to increase competition for wholesale broadband.
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Four women finger NY subway perv

Dan Hoyt - the "smirking sicko" who exposed himself to a 22-year-old woman on New York's subway and became a net celebrity for his trouble - has been released on $5,000 bail after appearing in court on four charges of subway flashing. The fugitive from justice finally gave himself up last Wednesday and was picked from a line-up by four of his alleged victims.
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Orange Mobile Office Card 3G PC Card

Review Just under a year ago I reviewed the original 3G Orange Mobile Office Card and was decidedly unimpressed. Sub-standard hardware and poorly considered software added up to a package that, quite simply, wasn't up to the job at hand. This situation was made worse for Orange by the fact that only a few weeks earlier I had reviewed the Vodafone Mobile Connect 3G data card, and it had performed flawlessly, writes Riyad Emeran.
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E-banking security provokes fear or indifference

A recent study by analyst Forrester Research has unearthed conflicting views about the safety or otherwise of online banking. The survey of 11,300 UK net users found that while many online banking consumers are complacent about security, a large minority have given up online banking as a direct result of security fears.
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No live TV birth for Dutch Big Brother

There is hope for humanity after all - the Dutch authorities have ruled that the preganant woman currently appearing in human zoo Big Brother will not be allowed to give birth on live TV.
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Microsoft sues EC

Microsoft is taking legal action against the European Commission and has confirmed it has filed a suit with the Court of First Instance. As part of the agreement reached last March the Court asked MS to open up access to its server APIs - it is this issue the software firm is now contesting.
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3 UK to expand handset net access

3 UK looks set to increase the amount of content its punters can view on the net using their 3G phones.

F5 buys Swan in web acceleration push

In brief Traffic management outfit F5 Networks has acquired Wan optimisation and application acceleration firm Swan Labs for $43m. The all-cash transaction is subject to various closing conditions - including acceptance of employment with F5 Networks by particular Swan Labs employees - but expected to close in the first quarter of F5 Networks’ 2006 fiscal year.
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Stop using the word 'mobe'!

Poll There have been a few complaints recently (well, two actually) about our increasing use of the word "mobe":
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Clarke: Europe must trade civil liberties for security

British Home Secretary Charles Clarke has warned that European citizens will have to accept that civil liberties may have to be bartered away in exchange for protection from terrorists and organised criminals.
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Hero BOFHs needed for Katrina relief work

The SANS Institute - best known for helping to track hacker activity via the Internet Storm Center - is helping to recruit tech-savvy volunteers to help care for people left homeless by Hurricane Katrina. Techies are needed to set up PCs and wireless networks at shelters and at Red Cross headquarters in Washington DC to install security software tools. The Red Cross HQ needs people who know how to tune Cisco IDS, NetIQ Manager and McAfee ePolicy Orchestrator tools.

Sun tries to tempt thousands with reworked partner program

Sun Microsystems hopes to expand the number of ISVs building applications on Solaris 10 and OpenSolaris by 30 per cent before next summer following an overhaul of its iForce partner program.
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Apple unveils iTunes phone, Flash iPod

More than a year after Apple first announced its partnership with Motorola to put iTunes on a mobile phone, the device is finally available. Apple also overhauled the iPod line - introducing a new, solid state music player - and revamped its iTunes software today.

CA makes a puddle in patent pool

Computer Associates International (CA) is cracking open the door on its patent portfolio by releasing some of its IP to open source developers.

Sun has at least 1GHz of Niagara Viagra

Sun officials still won't say a heck of a lot about the upcoming Niagara processor family, despite the fact that our sources have it shipping in just a couple of months. Thanks to some beta systems and OpenSolaris, however, the Average Joe can discover a thing or two about these multicore chips.
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'China has f*cked us' - Bill Gates

Microsoft's internal politics - the slipping roadmaps, the meetings about meetings about meetings, and the lack of even a coherent medium-term strategy - are more than just a tech industry soap opera. They're a source of amusement for the Chinese Government, a departing Microsoft exec has alleged.
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Microsoft paints underachieving MBS range as Dynamics

Microsoft is putting a little pizzazz into its business solutions (MBS) range - a line that's missed key product delivery dates and revenue expectations.