Shiny rocks could hold evidence of Martian life
Researchers looking for evidence of life on Mars should be taking a closer look at a shiny coating that forms on rocks in the desert, according to scientists at London University's Imperial College (IC).
UK film biz hires piracy-busting 'cinema investigator'
UK film distributors have coughed up the cash to fund a "cinema investigator" to tackle the menace of ne'er-do-wells filming new releases direct from the silver screen and transferring the resulting footage to moody DVDs.
Man invents 'password-protected bullets'
A German inventor has developed an idea for "password-protected bullets". In a US patent, Hebert Meyerle outlines the concept of a modified cartridge that would only fire once a correct authentication signal is received. A transponder with matching codes needs to be worn in a ring on a shooter's firing hand before a gun using the invention would be capable of discharging a bullet.
Yahoo!, MSN chat interop steps out
Yahoo! and Microsoft introduced new versions of their IM chat clients last month, and while flaky, show the first results of last October's interoperability agreement.
LugRadio Live returns
After the success of last summer's bash, the founders of the geektastic* radio show LugRadio are holding another live event for the open source community.
Becta embarks on software review
Further education colleges are being urged to take part in a review of education software licences.
EU opens public consultation on RFID
Fears about new Radio Frequency Identification technology (RFID), have prompted the EU to open a public consultation process.
World chip sales revive in May after April's dip
May's worldwide chips sales rose 0.7 per cent on the previous month's total, $19.61bn, to reach $19.75bn, the US Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) said last night. May's figure was up by 9.4 per cent on the May 2005's total, $18.05bn.
If Orange is German, then it's buying AOL
Widespread enthusiasm for the Orange takeover of AOL's UK business has followed a speculative report in the UK's Sunday Telegraph - but reports from inside the bidding auction are now talking of "indignant German bidders" - and claiming that, in fact, T-Mobile's parent, Deutsche Telekom, will be the buyer.
Nvidia said to be readying HDCP-native GPU updates
Nvidia will soon ship versions of its GeForce 7900 GT and GTX GPUs with integrated HDCP support, it has been claimed. If true, the move will position the company's chips as a cheaper option than adding a separate chip to add-in boards with HDMI ports.
Industries lobby EU Commission to cut copyright fees
At the same time as the EU Commission has launched a consultation paper with proposals to reform current copyright levies, the IT, telecommunications, electronics and digital industry associations have launched the Copyright Levies Reform Alliance (CLRA), campaigning for urgent reform of copyright levies.
Microsoft fines OK'd - reports
UpdatedThe vote is (unofficially, and off the record) in. Regulators from the European Union's 25 member countries have, according to reports, unanimously found Microsoft guilty of non-compliance with the commission's landmark 2004 anti-trust ruling.
Apple extends MacBook line-up
UpdatedApple has begun shipping a pair of new MacBook configurations through its retail chain, bumping up the specification and upping the price accordingly, it has been claimed. The two new models sit, respectively, above the current white and black 2GHz MacBooks.
Snow this week in Brum: official
The Brummie readers among you who are currently slumped semi-conscious at your desks encompassed by a semi-circle of fans as the mercury threatens to hit an all-time July high can take heart that you will only have to endure the intolerable heat-induced suffering until Thursday:
NTL:Telewest scores with Virgin
NTL:Telewest finally announced completion of its buy-up of Virgin Mobile today after getting the green light from the High Court.
Next generation BI - Part two
CommentIn the previous article in this series, I outlined some of the major features that you want to see in a next generation BI solution.
German officials deny probe into Intel, Metro collusion claim
Germany's Federal Cartel Office (FCO) has rejected claims that it is investigating allegations Intel and local retail giant Metro agreed that the retailer's Media Markt and Saturn chains would not sell PCs based on AMD processors.
MI5 bumps off ambitious IT plan
The British Security Service (BSS) got itself into such a pickle with its IT modernisation that it has been forced to scrap one of its key projects.
AMD posts dual-core tweaking tool
AMD has posted a software tool that it claims improves the video performance of games running on its dual-core Athlon 64 FX processor. The AMD Dual-Core Optimizer compensates for quirks in the CPU's time stamp system which can impact frame rates.
Oracle stays mum over database glitch
Nominet has been forced to cancel a big update following a bug in its new Oracle software that the database provider has been unable, or unwilling, to help with.
Sharp, Willcom unveil Nokia Communicator competitor
Japanese mobile phone company Willcom has unveiled a Windows Mobile 5.0-based handset to compete with Nokia's Communicator series - aka 'the brick'. Manufactured by Sharp and equipped with a 416MHz Intel XScale processor, the W-Zero3 WS700SH sports a 2.8in, 640 x 480 display and a slide-down QWERTY keyboard.
NHS farce leads to lost data
ExclusivePrimitive backup procedures at Bexley Care Trust have led to the loss of email, contact, calendar, and schedule data across two NHS trusts.
Medion charts budget sat nav kit revamp
Medion, the company that revolutionised the European PDA market a few years back just by bundling GPS receivers and route-planning software with its PocketPCs, today unveiled its latest line-up of dedicated sat nav gadgets.
Volkswagen unleashes 150mph self-driving car
You have to admire Volkswagen: while the French motor industry and national rival BMW are still feebly denying they are already controlled by the Lizard Alliance - despite chilling evidence to the contrary - the Wolfsburg tentacle of the German manufacturer has decided to cut literally to the chase and scrap even the merest pretence that you are in control of your shiny new automobile.
Adobe frees software to win developers
Adobe Systems has shaken up pricing and packaging of its Flex rich web content creation software to increase its appeal among developers considering AJAX, while updating its ubiquitous Flash player.
Samsung's snazzy snappers to ship September
Samsung today launched a stylish trio of flagship digital cameras the company hopes will win it a host of new fans when they ship in September. The luxurious-looking gadgets incorporate hi-res video shooting and multimedia playback.
A tech health check for SMBs
Quocirca's changing channelsThe terms "high availability" and "disaster recovery" are most commonly associated with the requirements of large enterprises. But most small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are as reliant on their information technology (IT) and arguably more vulnerable to IT failure than their larger counterparts.
Mac Pro to sport case redesign for Intel era?
Apple's pro-oriented desktop Mac will not only sport a new name and a new Intel processor when it launches at the company's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) next month but also a new case design.
IT set to dominate European patents debate
The European Commission has published the initial findings from its public consultation on Europe's patent system, revealing deep divisions within the business community on how best to proceed, but also a consensus that something must be done.
Samsung to bring 'BlackBerry beater' to Europe
Samsung is to ship its BlackBerry-like SGH-i320 Windows Mobile 5.0-based phone in Europe later this month, the South Korean giant promised today. The device sports a 2.2in, 240 x 320, 65,536-colour display above a QWERTY keyboard.
Judge slaps US Navy with sonar ban
The US Navy has been temporarily banned from using sonar. A federal judge in California slapped a restraining order on the military after environmentalist lawyers successfully argued that marine mammals could be at risk.
Korean stem cell 'fraud' gives emotional testimony
Hwang Woo-Suk, the disgraced Korean stem cell scientist, has admitted in court that he fabricated data.
Eclipse comes last in quality vote
The increasingly popular Eclipse open source tools framework has finished in last place, with Sun Microsystems' NetBeans, in a developers' vote on quality of features.
MySpace, kids today and the NHS
LettersSo, who is responsible for what, online? This is the question of the moment, thanks to the whole MySpace furore. Some argue that the parents should monitor their sprolings' use of the internet, others that companies need to do more to make their chat pages safer places to be. Falling into the former category was Scott Granneman, over at Security Focus, who argued that we are : in the midst of a mass hysteria.
Police probe Paris Hilton link in LexisNexis breach
US investigators have arrested five men on suspicion of involvement of hacking into the database of LexisNexis Group in a crime linked by prosecutors to a breach that led to the disclosure of the personal details of more than 310,000 people last year.