10th > March > 2008 Archive

server room

A Shaolin monk, Warren Buffett and a Russian mobster walk into a bar…

Radio Reg Death threats from the Russian mob, a war on Wall Street, Wikipedia puke, Warren Buffett. Where to begin?
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McCain taps Fiorina

Former HP CEO Carly Fiorina may be warming up that vice president seat.
Warning: roadworks

10 ways to improve your code

SD West 2008 Neil Ford's Software Development West presentation, 10 Ways to Improve Your Code, was aimed at Java programmers, but Ford's "advanced code hygiene" discussion had wisdom for coders of many stripes.

What's the best way to digitise VHS tapes?

There is an interesting product to allow PC users to listen to/rip audio cassettes - the Ion Tape2PC USB cassette deck - so our dodgy 1980s collections can be saved to MP3 or similar before being consigned to the bin. Does anyone know of a similar product that can be used for VHS?
Anonymous, 10 2008

Windows better off closed, says Microsoft

Open sourcing Windows is more hassle than it's worth and Microsoft sees little gain in releasing code, according to the man leading Microsoft's server marketing and platform strategy.
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HSBC forgets to renew its digital certificate

Online banking customers logging onto the HSBC website last week were confronted by potentially confusing warnings about a security certificate.
The Register breaking news

ESA's space truck heads for ISS

The European Space Agency's "Jules Verne" Automated Transfer Vehicle yesterday hitched a lift on a specially-adapted Ariane 5ES rocket from the Guiana Space Centre en route to "re-supply and re-boost" the International Space Station (ISS).

Man webcams butt in Burnout Paradise prang rage

So what do you do if you get beaten at Burnout Paradise by a youngster? If 12-year-old Najee Kennedy's experience is anything to go by, you plug your webcam into your PS3 and give the victor a look at your butt.
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South Korea grounds astronaut for security gaffe

South Korea has effectively grounded the astronaut intended to be the country's first man in space for "violating security protocol" at a Russian training centre, the science ministry said today.

Asus CEO: Eee PC to get HDD options, Intel Atom CPU

Asus boss Jerry Shen has revealed that the upcoming 8.9in Eee PC 900 will use Intel's Atom processor and may eventually come with a hard drive.
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UK government data protection is a shambles

The UK Government has failed to put in place basic data protection and integrity policies despite recent major information breaches, according to an online ID firm.
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Brit apiarists demand £8m to save honeybees

British apiarists are demanding the government stump £8m for a research project aimed at saving the nation's honeybees from extinction - something they say will happen within 10 years if cash is not found to investigate "new treatments and drugs" for ailing populations.

Microsoft's Yahoo! takeover faces technical challenges

Microsoft is in no hurry to integrate the technology and culture of Yahoo! should the aggressive takeover go ahead.

Wii gamers draw bead on laser-sight crossbow add-on

Wii peripherals are ten-a-penny these days, but until today none of them have had us living in fear. However, a new crossbow designed for one of the console’s shoot-‘em-ups could be taking things too far.
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MIT plans to roll out 'folding' car

Scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are planning to knock up a full-scale model of their "City Car" - an experimental vehicle which "folds" itself in half and snuggles up to other City Cars in the manner of supermarket trollies.
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US gives thumbs up to OOXML for ISO standard

The US delegation to the International Standards Organisation (ISO) has voted to maintain its “Approve” recommendation for Microsoft’s Office Open XML (OOXML) to be adopted by the body.
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Dear ISP, I am not a target market

Comment Chapter four of Generation X, Douglas Coupland's seminal 1990 eulogy to post-war optimism, bears the winning title "I am not a target market".

HP Compaq 2710p tablet PC

Review The tablet PC may never have come close to achieving the success Microsoft hoped for when it launched the concept a few years back, but these transforming laptops have won a solid audience.
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Hacking for public health

Etech Forget the grand project to electronify the NHS. The real technology-induced medical changes will come from elsewhere.

Ten years old: the world's first MP3 player

Forgotten Tech The MP3 player is ten years old this month. The first commercially released personal music player capable of handling MP3 files was the MPMan F10, manufactured by Korea's Saehan Information Systems and launched in March 1998.
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CBI calls for major overhaul to UK tax

The CBI today launched a scathing attack on the government’s corporation tax plans, claiming the economy will suffer if Chancellor Alistair Darling doesn’t radically overhaul the current system.
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Plastic bag campaign falls apart at the seams

The bottom could be about to fall out of the government’s crusade against plastic bags, with claims that one of the key underpinnings of the campaign against them is based on nothing more than a typo.
Joe Fay, 10 2008

Sony readies multi-room music streaming stereo

Sony has updated its Giga Juke range of hard disk-based home stereos, adding two slimline models. One, the company claimed, can become the basis for a multi-room music streaming set up.
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IPCC's 'evil twin' launches climate change sceptic's creed

A group of dissident scientists and climate researchers has affirmed that there is no convincing evidence that CO2 emissions from modern industrial activity cause climate change, and has called on world leaders to abandon all efforts to reduce emissions "forthwith." Issued last week at the close of the International Conference on Climate Change in New York, the Manhattan Declaration challenged the notion that a scientific consensus on climate change exists, and claimed that efforts at emissions reduction would diminish prosperity while having no appreciable impact.
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UK presses car ferry to ship powdered plutonium

The UK is shipping plutonium dioxide from Sellafield, Cumbria, to France this week using a converted roll-on, roll-off ferry .

Amazon spills beans on upcoming SanDisk MP3 player

Amazon’s US website has let slip the specs and availability of the latest member of SanDisk’s Sansa family of MP3 players - before the manufacturer has even announced the gadget.
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Software engineer builds straw house for £4k

A 52-year-old software engineer has built a habitable house for just £4,000 - albeit with a lot of hard graft and a certain amount of scavenging.

Make vendors liable for exploits

Academics are calling for comprehensive security-breach notification in Europe and sanctions against ISPs that fail to clean up botnets as part of a series of measures designed to make insecure systems unprofitable.
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ThruVision camera shows weapons, not bodies

A spy-beam camera that can detect weapons, drugs or explosives hidden under people’s clothes from up to 25 metres away will be unveiled at a Home Office hardware expo this week.

Look out Al Qaeda bitches, Facebook's comin' atcha

Facebook can save the world from the power of nightmares and the threat from Osama bin Laden's minions, or so reckons its founder and CEO (...bitch) Mark Zuckerberg.

MS to cut Xbox 360 prices this week

If news of the recent Blu-ray talks between Sony and Microsoft has got you thinking about buying an Xbox 360, just hold off for a few days and you’ll save yourself a few quid.
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Motorola mobile loses its (ex) head

Ousted head of mobile at Motorola Stu Reed has left the company, which is continuing to haemorrhage executive talent at an alarming rate.
Bill Ray, 10 2008
Warning Stop

Iomega says no to EMC

Portable hard drive maker Iomega has rejected a hostile $178m takeover bid from storage giant EMC.
Microsoft Office logo

Microsoft Office Online falls into Halloween time vortex

Either Steve "Uncle Fester" Ballmer is preparing everyone for his star turn at Halloween very early this year, or there's something wrong over at Microsoft's Office Online site.
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Zuckerberg's Total Venom Spew is the new BillG

Comment Where do the thanks go? To God? To the venture capitalists? To Microsoft? To Charles Babbage? Someone please tell me.
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US, UK and friends have cyber-war party

Business and government leaders from the US, UK and three other countries will spend much of this week simulating and defending against a large-scale cyber attack in an exercise designed to strengthen coordinated responses to what many perceive as a growing threat.
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NetApp changes name to NetApp

Network Appliance today will start saving you a precious half-second from your day by officially shortening its name to NetApp.

Microsoft reveals its database for the cloud

The announcement of Microsoft's SQL Server Data Services was almost buried near the end of chief software architect Ray Ozzie's Mix 08 keynote last week.

Sun and Microsoft confirm data center lovechild

Er, will someone please get Scott McNealy on the horn? This Sun Microsystems and Microsoft love-in is getting ridiculous.
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Vatican updates list of mortal sins

Today is Monday, which means an addendum to the list of things Catholics should feel guilty about.

IBM's charming smile attracts Hitachi to 32nm research pact

When it comes to semiconductors, IBM is the friendliest vendor in town.

Sun dreams the impossible Java on Jesus Phone dream

Yes, Sun has committed itself to putting Java on the iPhone. But this is a bit like Miss Havisham committing herself to a life of marital bliss.
Cade Metz, 10 2008