24th July 2007 Archive

The Register breaking news

Google nabs aerial camera company

If you were getting worried that a full two weeks had passed without Google acquiring yet another company, you can now rest easy. Today, the lord of the acquisitions bagged ImageAmerica - a company that takes aerial photographs with its own airplanes and high-res cameras - as it looks to beef up imagery on its Google Earth and Google Maps services.
Cade Metz, 24 2007
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Jesus Phone needs an exorcist

Security researchers have discovered a security flaw in Apple's iPhone that could allow miscreants to wreak havoc on users of the highly-revered device, which has been dubbed the Jesus Phone by its more blindly faithful users.
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XM and Sirius propose a la carte options

XM and Sirius are dangling a new carrot in front of the Federal Communications Commission in order to get the green light to merge. The satellite radio companies say they will offer a la carte packages of their lineups if the antitrust regulators look the other way.

Computer program to take on the Unabomber

How intelligent is a computer - and just what does it mean to be intelligent, anyway?

Sony shows self-filling Walkman

Can it be true - a self-filling digital music player? That's what Sony claims for its new Walkman NWD-B100, a Flash-based DAP with the ability to pull tracks off a PC as soon as it's connected.

Intel cuts desktop prices by up to 50%

Intel has slashed the price of a number of its desktop and mobile processors, but the cuts, while deep, aren't as extensive as anticipated. However, the move confirms an aggressive pricing plan for the chip maker's 1333MHz frontside bus parts.
Sony PlayStation 3

Sony preps fix-filled PS3 firmware update

Sony has confirmed that the next release of the PlayStation 3 firmware, version 1.9, will be available in the US "in the next few days". It's already been released to Japanese console owners, and will almost certainly come to Europe shortly.
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Police claim parents support youth database

A nuisance youth database described as "an educational tool" has won parents' approval, according to police in Clacton.
Kablenet, 24 2007
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Fasthosts update: still above water

Fasthosts is fully operational despite the continued flooding problems.
Flag New Zealand

Crazed NZ fanboy mows down churchgoer

A 58-year-old woman is in an Auckland hospital with "life threatening" injuries after being hit by car as she left the city's Methodist Mission Church, 3 News reports.

RFID a 'technical blunder', report says

Radio frequency identification (RFID) is a technology bubble ready to burst according to a new report by Dublin-based firm Heavey RF.
Mortar board

Becta gives schools biometric data guidance

The British Educational Communications and Technology Agency (Becta) has published guidance for schools on how to implement biometrics in line with data protection laws.
Kablenet, 24 2007

LeftHand brews up IP SAN software

LeftHand Networks, the storage company that's named after a brewery*, said the new version of SANiQ - its iSCSI SAN software - includes self-healing capabilities and what it called next-generation thin provisioning.

Laptop sales drive PC shipments in EMEA

PC sales in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) were up 13.5 per cent in Q2 2007, according to market watcher IDC. A total of 17.5m desktop and notebook computers were sold in the region, with a 31 per cent increase in notebook sales compared to the same period last year.
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Registry takes hands off approach to community trade marks

Holders of Community trademarks will soon have to put their own monitoring systems in place to defend their marks, according to a trade mark expert.
EU flag

EC proposes pan-EU biz structure

The European Commission wants to create a form of company across Europe to make cross-border business easier to conduct for small firms.

Dell, ThinkPad laptops first on official Wireless USB kit list

The first six Wireless USB products allowed to use the cable-free connectivity technology's official logo have been named. Standing out from the various adaptor accessories: a pair of laptops from Dell and Lenovo.
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What are your tech priorities for the next 12 months?

Reg Technology Panel The Reg Technology Panel Barometer study, our bi-annual trawl through your priorities in tech, returns this week with a batch of new questions to map your focus, concerns, and initiatives for the next 12 months (you can see past studies here).

US presidential hopefuls face the YouTubers

Yesterday saw something of a first for American politics, as Democratic wannabe presidential candidates took part in a live televised debate on CNN.
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Nokia goes all Twango

Nokia has snapped up photo and video sharing site Twango for an undisclosed sum.
Bill Ray, 24 2007

Seagate FreeAgent Go 160GB external hard drive

Review Hard drive maker Seagate continues to try and persuade consumers that add-on drives aren't just for geeks but for everyone. It's latest attempt is the compact and eminently palm-able Go, part of its FreeAgent line up of external hard drives... er... "data movers".
Western Digital Scorpio 120GB HDD

Western Digital's hard drives go green

Western Digital (WD) has jumped on the eco bandwagon and parted the leaves to reveal a series of 2.5in "green" hard drives, designed to help users reduce the size of their data storage carbon footprints.
Pirates ahoy!

Microsoft, Feds, and Chinese authorities seize $2bn in pirated software

Pirated Microsoft software, estimated by the firm to be worth more than $2bn, has been seized by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Chinese police following a long-running joint operation which began in 2005.
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American women prefer weather to sport

American women like surfing for weather, while men prefer searching for sports news, according to an analysis of mobile data usage in the US and EU.
Bill Ray, 24 2007
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Got Sky but no computer? Book yourself a doctor's appointment

Doctors' offices across the country are beginning to offer appointment bookings via TV set-top boxes and mobiles, adding to a list of network services for non-surfers or those not owning a computer.

Hitachi component launches point to Blu-ray camcorder?

Fresh speculation has begun circulating online that Hitachi is set to bring the world's first Blu-ray Disc-equipped camcorder to market, after the company announced a camcorder friendly optical pick-up.
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Astronauts chuck fridge off space station

Litterbug astronauts have hurled almost a ton of junk off the International Space Station, including an old refrigeration system weighing 1400lb, risking a fiery meteoric death for innocent Earth-dwellers. In sharp contrast to green consumers worldwide, NASA has brazenly revealed that the fly tipping spacemen hadn't even used the fridge before throwing it overboard. Outrage is expected from the sandal-wearing, lentil-friendly elements of society.
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Jordan names sprog 'Princess Tiaamii'

Bulgarian airbag platform Jordan, aka Katie Price, and "pop star" Peter Andre have named their recently-arrived sprog "Princess Tiaamii", the BBC reports.

Sony claims price-driven PS3 sales hike

Sony has claimed that PS3 sales in North America have jumped 135 per cent since it brought the price of the 60GB console down to $499 two weeks ago.

Panasonic illuminates Lumix digicam trio

Panasonic has expanded its range of Lumix wide-angle digital cameras with the addition of a seriously professional-looking 8.1-megapixel model with 18x optical zoom. It also release two new compact models.

BT Wholesale hires new CEO

BT has hired Sally Davis as chief executive of its network services and solutions division, BT Wholesale.
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AT&T has strong quarter

AT&T is celebrating after posting another strong quarter - bringing in $29.5bn in revenues and making reported net profit of $2.9bn, up from $1.8bn last year on revenue of $15.8bn.
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Orange gets into the music biz

Orange and Sony Ericsson have gotten together with Channel 4 to launch "mobileACT Unsigned": a competition to find the best unsigned band in the UK.
Bill Ray, 24 2007
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China's 'elephant man' goes under the knife

Chinese surgeons today removed around 10kg (22lb) of a monster tumour which had transformed 31-year-old Huang Chuncai into the country's homegrown Joseph Merrick, Reuters reports.

Flash flaw may prompt Wii to 'hang'

Nintendo's Wii gaming console could be at risk from vulnerabilities within Adobe's Flash software, incorporated in the console's Opera-based web browser, security firm Symantec has warned.
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Whistling dolphins wired for sound

Boat-shy dolphins could soon be located via software that identifies what the species is by listening to the individual whistles the marine mammals make.
arrow pointing up

USB goes Wireless

The first devices submitted for Wireless USB certification have been approved, and four of them will be in US shops by the end of the summer.
Bill Ray, 24 2007
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Breakfast with bin Laden

Part 1 I shot Lennon; I shot the Pope. I shot the devil; now you got no hope. -- Suicidal Tendencies

EMC profit rises with increased demand

Brisk corporate spending on storage devices lifted EMC's second-quarter profit by 20 percent and caused the company to boost - slightly - its estimate for the year. But investors drove down EMC shares, proving that sometimes good isn't good enough.

Intel's Core-fueled Xeon MP arrives at 2.93GHz

Intel finally looks set to carry its Core processor architecture to midrange and high-end servers with the release of a new Xeon code-named Tigerton. The chip maker revealed that the Tigerton chip will be sold as the Quad-Core Xeon 7300 series and will rely on the 7300 chipset – code-named Clarksboro.
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Google in crusade against neckties

A brief summation of Google's new privacy policies. One: Your search data will be made anonymous after it sits on the company's servers for 18 months. Two: Your Google browser cookies will expire if you don't visit the site for two years. And three: a man should not be allowed to hide his "shrinking shoulders" and "protruding paunch" behind a business suit and necktie.
Cade Metz, 24 2007

CIOs pooh-pooh the iPhone

Four out for four CIOs agree: the iPhone is no match for the Blackberry. Last night, at an event hosted by Silicon Valley's tech-happy Churchill Club, four high-profile CIOs - representing Google, Hasbro, Levi Strauss, and health care giant McKesson Corp - were asked if they'd carry an iPhone for business purposes, and all four said "No."
Cade Metz, 24 2007
Warning Go

IronRuby opened to all comers

Microsoft has released early code for its Ruby-on-.NET scripting language during a week of actively courting developers and community feedback.

Cisco preps for virtualized 'Data Center 3.0'

Virtualization has become somewhat of a Wild West for the data center market, promising streets paved with gold for IT groups - and endless riches for the vendors hawking this new-age server slicing technology.
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Amazon profits up nearly three-fold

No surprise here: Amazon is selling more stuff than ever. Today, the world's most famous online retailer announced second quarter profits of $78m, a 257 per cent leap from the same quarter last year, and net revenues of $2.88bn, a 35 per cent increase.
Cade Metz, 24 2007
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Miss America calls for mandatory internet safety classes

The current Miss America has asked Congress to take further steps in protecting children from internet predators.
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Power outage knocks out major websites

Some of the net's biggest websites went dark following power interruptions in San Francisco that are disrupted operations at co-location facility 365 Main.