11th > May > 2006 Archive

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Training with Team Three Pair

Many people think that presentation skills come naturally. For some lucky people this is true, but for the rest of us mere mortals presenting is a daunting minefield of rights and wrongs.
hands waving dollar bills in the air

Borland cuts hit overseas ops

Borland Software has provided greater detail on where it expects the majority of its recently announced job cuts to fall, while announcing preliminary results for its first quarter.
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Google holds seminar for press on accurate story telling

Like a well-travelled jellyfish, Google is now more transparent and international.
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Multimap launches space bank

Updated Here's a bit of fun for those of you whiling away your time at work assembling an improbably long paper clip chain: imagine you're in London's Holborn and looking for ther nearest branch of Barclay's bank tentacle Woolwich. Pretty straight forward you might think, since this sort of information is readily available online.
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Hackers slam McKinnon extradition ruling

The prosecution of alleged Pentagon uber-hacker Gary McKinnon shows that the US is failing to take even basic precautions to protect its military systems, according to a reformed computer hacker accused of similar crimes 10 years ago.

Fujitsu-Siemens sheds sales jobs

Around 20 Fujitsu-Siemens staff face the chop in what the firm is calling a "repositioning" exercise.
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Dell knocks out North Carolina taxpayers in court

Dell has won the first round of a legal slugfest disputing close to $300m in incentives awarded to the computer maker by North Carolina.
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Why do I get eye strain?

Maybe grandma wasn't right. Experts now contend that reading in the dark probably has no long-term damaging effects on the eyes. But eyes become more tired in poor light since they have to work harder to discriminate letters, colors, and objects. So it’s a good idea to work and play in plenty of light, especially as one gets older.
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Sun software - more prestige than power?

I've said it before (four years ago, to be precise), and I'll say it again. Software is in the ascendant at Sun Microsystems. Last time I said it, the then up-and-coming Jonathan Schwartz had been appointed software executive vice president.
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French plans to regulate iTunes may soften

The French Senate appears to be softening plans that would have forced Apple and others offering copy-protected music downloads to open up their services so that music can be made interoperable with other music players, Associated Press reports.
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Glaxo wins injunction against extremists' threat

GlaxoSmithKline won an injunction last night against animal rights extremists to prevent them acting on threats to publish shareholders' personal details on the internet and to stop them further contacting or harassing its private shareholders.

EDS's Air Force system should fly by 'weekend'

The RAF has declared it will have its stalled human resources computer systems fully operational by the end of the week, seven weeks after it went live.

AMD brings forward Socket S1, AM2 launches

AMD's Socket AM2 processors for desktops and its dual-core mobile Turion 64 CPUs will be announced this month after all, and not early June as previously expected. The Turion 64 X2s will be unveiled on 17 May, a week ahead of the Socket AM2 Athlons' debut on 23 May.
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Wireless network use grows

One in five broadband users in the US and Europe is hooked up to a wireless network in their home, prompting analysts Strategy Analytics to suggest that Wi-Fi is emerging as a "mass market phenomenon".

Vista bad news for anti-spyware market?

The extra security features in Microsoft's upcoming Vista operating system could negatively affect smaller security firms, according to a new report.
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TiVo ad service launches with 70 US advertisers

We knew that TiVo was on to something when it began the idea of opt-in, voluntary viewing of advertising two and a half years ago, when it said that 65 per cent of its audience had volunteered to watch an advert it had placed on its Digital Video Recorders, on behalf of Universal Pictures, to advertise the film Bruce Almighty.
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Hitachi pips AMD to AM2 moniker

Hitachi has brought back the look of its original dry-cell alkaline AM2 battery after more than 40 years to celebrate its introduction of the technology in 1963, the year of the Kennedy assassination and the debut of Doctor Who. Its 'core' is set to operate at 1.5V.
'ard Reg, 11 2006
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MS, News Corp team up for pro gaming league

Microsoft and various divisions of News Corp made another major move this week to dominate gaming, with the announcement of a professional gaming league that will make cultural icons, rather like today's skateboarding, wrestling or basketball players from video game players.

Sony, Panasonic partner on HD-on-DVD spec

Updated Sony and Matsushita today launched a would-be standard for HD camcorders that used DVDs as their storage media. The two companies said they would promote the AVCHD specification on their own products - Matsushita doing so through its Panasonic brand - and encourage other camcorder vendors to do the same.
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Copyright police train sniffer dogs to find DVDs

Piracy fighters at the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) have trained a pair of dogs to locate DVDs.
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Astronomers: gamma ray death from above 'unlikely'

A gamma-ray burst (GRB) in our galactic neighbourhood could decimate life, destroy the ozone layer and trigger drastic climate change. A new study of Hubble data, published in Nature, has found such a cosmic deathray scenario is less likely than previous doomsday predictions.

IBM steams into fibre channel

In brief IBM is to launch new 4Gb/s fibre channel mid-range storage kit. The announcement comes after EMC unveiled its own 4Gb/s Clariion updates on Monday.
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eBayer flogs place in Big Brother gaff

We're increasingly convinced that eBay has become the online equivalent of a 19th-century dockside flash house - a dark and menacing lushery shrouded in London particular and packed to the gunwales with snide-pinching screevers, barker-bearing bludgers, tea-leaving toolers, strumpetrous dollymops and, naturally, griddling glocks.

Sony plans 8GB NW-A1200 Walkman

Sony is preparing to update its NW-A1000 line of hard drive-based Walkman digital music players with an 8GB model, Reg Hardware has learned. The new version will ship with the SonicStage CP jukebox software the company announced yesterday.

Intel primes Flash standardisation push

Intel, Hynix, Micron, Sony and others have founded the Open NAND Flash Interface (ONFI) working group which will develop a specification that may make it easier to incorporate Flash memory in notebooks to shorten start-up times and boost battery life.

PS3s offer 'identical' functionality, Sony exec claims

Sony has claimed that the 20GB version of its upcoming PlayStation 3 console will offer "identical functionality" to the 60GB model. However, it remains unclear whether the lower-capacity machine will sport an HDMI port. Indeed, comments from the company suggest it won't.
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UK Govt website keels under weight of terror bomb report

At last, the long-awaited Intelligence & Security Committee report on the London 7 July 2005 bomb attacks is here, and out chunters the release via gnn.gov.uk. The release, issued on behalf of the Cabinet Office, tells us that the report is available at the ISC's "web site", and directs us here, which at time of writing housed a splendid document on intelligence assessments of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction.
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ICANN chokes off .xxx porn registry

Plans for an area of the internet dedicated to pornography were killed last night in a vote by overseeing organisation ICANN.
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419ers open flat rental agency

We're obliged today to reader Alexander Livingstone who has just alerted us to the fact that the Lads from Lagos - or the Lass in this case - have moved into the London property rental business.
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Book review The title of this book should have been "Pre-refactoring", and for a suitable subtitle, "Getting It Right First Time" would have been a bit more informative than "Extreme Abstraction, Extreme Separation, Extreme Readability", which is a bit extreme on the extremes.
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EU regulators back wholesale route to cut roaming charges

Europe's telecoms regulators have supported plans to cut roaming charges but believe this should be done by cutting the cost of wholesale charges rather than retail prices.
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Half the music on iPods stolen, alleges Real boss

Real Networks CEO Rob Glaser has tacitly alleged that iPod owners are music thieves, a claim that echoes the words of Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. Both companies compete directly with Apple's iTunes Music Store.

Keeping management up to speed with IT

From time to time, reports emerge suggesting that senior business people, such as the financial director (FD), are becoming more IT savvy and more involved in IT decision making.
Dale Vile, 11 2006

DRAM makers to pay $160m to settle civil suits

Samsung, Hynix and Infineon have agreed to cough up $160m to a collection of small companies who sued the memory giants after the US Department of Justice launched a probe into DRAM price-fixing claims.
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Two practical opinions of Microsoft Team System

EDS has been testing Team System since its early betas, and now has three live projects on the system. What does it like? “The integration aspect, the fact that there’s less context-switching between applications is very important. The extensibility is very important, either through third-parties or by doing our own stuff. Customizability of the process is important – nobody’s actually using MSF out of the box. The invisible metrics gathering is huge. Unbeknownst to the developer, metrics are gathered, and then reports magically appear,” says Chief Technologist Aaron Kowall. “We believe that it will improve our productivity when developing .NET applications,” adds lead technologist Etienne Tremblay.
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Snoop Dogg cautioned over Heathrow affray

Gangsta rapper Snoop Dogg has been cautioned for affray under Section 4 of the Public Order Act for "use of threatening words or behaviour" during an incident last month at Heathrow airport, the BBC reports.

Intel talks up 'Centrino 4' for SFF PC makers

Taiwanese manufacturers of small form-factor PCs have re-iterated Intel's scheme to pitch 'Santa Rosa', the next version of the chip maker's Centrino platform, as the basis for future compact desktop and living room PCs.
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Intel, AMD face off in codename clash

Intel and AMD may be bitter rivals, but they will both be pushing products they have codenamed 'Santa Rosa' in the coming months, it seems. Fortunately, they two are unlikely to clash: one's pitched at notebooks, the other at heavy-duty servers.

IBM throws sharper blades at SMBs

IBM has concocted a new recipe for making blade servers more attractive to small- to medium-sized business. Take some networking, add a dash of services and then wrap the whole package in sweetened financing.

T-Mobile UK confirms VoIP ban

T-Mobile UK believes VoIP isn't sufficiently consistent or capable of providing calls of a high enough quality calls to be allowed into its mobile phone network, the carrier said to day in response to revelations it has effectively banned the technology from its latest data-oriented airtime package.

MS tries to rain on PS3 parade with $200 Wii forecast

Microsoft has claimed Nintendo's Wii console will cost $200 when its ships. Well, sort of. In a dig at Sony, Microsoft VP Peter Moore said consumers will be able to buy an Xbox 360 and a Wii for the price of a $599 PlayStation 3, according to Reuters.
server room

D-Link settles dispute with 'time geek'

Networking manufacturer D-Link has settled a dispute with a Danish administrator Poul-Henning Kamp over the way its kit queries internet time servers.
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Prudes finger naked E3 Expo strumpets

The Entertainment Software Association has effectively ruined the best chance that the average gamer will ever get of seeing a authentic expanse of female flesh by ordering "booth babes" at the E3 Expo in LA to put it away - or face the consequences.
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NASA denies Japanese SST talks

A NASA spokeswoman has denied that the agency plans to hold talks with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) over the development of the latter's Next Generation Supersonic Transport (SST).

Chip and PIN fraud hits Lloyds TSB

Lloyds TSB has admitted that flaws in the new Chip and PIN system recently introduced for debits cards in the UK open up the system to fraud. Conventional fraud may be down because of the system but crooks are still able to use cloned debit or credit cards in foreign ATMS.