26th November 2008 Archive

The Register breaking news

US Army in $50m video game upgrade

The US Army plans to spend $50m over five years to develop more video games for training soldiers for combat, according to the Army pub Stars and Stripes.
The Register breaking news

Google silences Gmail security blogorumors

Google security pros have taken exception to recent reports of a Gmail vulnerability that led to a rash of domain hijackings. They were the result of a plain-vanilla phishing campaign, they say.
The Register breaking news

Facebook spams social networkers with phishy email

Facebook has taken the unusual step of sending its users email asking them to click on a link so they can restore site configuration settings that were recently lost. Facebook isn't kidding, and neither are we.
For Sale sign detail

RISC daddy conjures Moore's Lawless parallel universe

The oft-cited Moore's Law is the fulcrum of the IT industry in that it has provided the means of giving us ever-faster and more sophisticated computing technology over the decades. This in turn allowed the IT industry to convince us that every one, two, or three years, we need new operating systems, better performance, and new and more complex applications. But ask yourself this: What happens to the IT industry if the performance improvements stop?
The Register breaking news

Government data review grants more data sharing power

Buried in the small print of the government's response to the Data Sharing Review is a line which grants the secretary of state power "to permit or require the sharing of personal information between particular specified persons, where a robust case for so doing exists."

Elgato EyeTV DTT Mac digital TV tuner

Review For a company that claims to be a leader in the field of video and multimedia, Apple has always had a strange blind spot when it comes to TV tuners. It’s largely resisted building them into Macs, and doesn’t even include one in its Apple TV set-top box.
The Register breaking news

HMRC estimates its IT project costs

HM Revenue and Customs is running 25 major IT projects worth at least £197m, but is unwilling to provide accurate estimates.
Kablenet, 26 2008

Quantum parks 180 staff

Data protection vendor Quantum is laying off 180 people and cutting expenses to preserve its business in the face of what it calls a global financial crisis.
The Register breaking news

Government finally names the day for porn ban

Sixty-one days and counting: if your stash contains any material that is or may fall foul of the Government’s new laws on extreme porn, then that is how long you have left to destroy it or otherwise get rid of it. Because, courtesy of Consenting Adult Action Network (CAAN), The Register can reveal today that the law is going live on 26 January 2009.

Acer confirms 10in netbook for Q1 2009

Acer will release a 10in netbook in Q1 2009, an senior executive has revealed.
The Register breaking news

Juror dismissed over Facebook poll

A juror in a sex abuse case was kicked off the case after using Facebook to ask her mates whether the suspect was guilty or not.

IT departments VAT-whacked

As Alistair Darling scrambles to deny plans to raise VAT to 18.5 per cent in order to pay for his borrowing binge the row over the problems it will cause for UK businesses deepens.

VW to speed up rollout of cut-price EV

'Leccy Tech German car maker Volkswagen is to accelerate development of its two-seat electric city car, it has been claimed.

Luke Skywalker's lightsabre goes on sale

Consoles a-plenty already offer gamers the chance to wield lightsabres in virtual Star Wars battles. But if you crave something more realistic then go and raid your piggybank, because the film's original lightsabre will go on sale next month.
The Register breaking news

Gov backs campaign to save Scott's Antarctic hut

UK culture minister Barbara Follett has called for donations to save the base hut built by Captain Robert Falcon Scott and members of the ill-fated 1910-1913 "Terra Nova" Antarctic expedition, which famously ended in death for Scott and four companions.

Apple forced to pull misleading UK iPhone ad

Apple's latest iPhone advert has been condemned by the ASA for giving the impression the phone could download and install applications quickly and easily, forcing the firm to pull the ad.
Bill Ray, 26 2008
The Register breaking news

UK's Watchkeeper drone in first autonomous flight

The British Army's new Watchkeeper robotic surveillance aircraft has made its first autonomous test flight, carrying out a full mission without remote piloting. The tests took place in Israel, at a facility operated by Israeli drone manufacturer Elbit.
The Register breaking news

Lapdancing 'not sexually stimulating', MPs hear

The Commons culture committee yesterday heard claims that lapdancing is "not sexually stimulating" during a hearing into the Licensing Act which is pondering reclassifying lapdancing clubs as "sex encounter establishments" - something which would make it easier for local councils to refuse them licences.
The Register breaking news

Secunia tool helps surfers to keep up to date with patches

Security notification firm Secunia released the final version of its software inspector tool on Tuesday, 17 months after the first beta of a product that aims to help surfers to keep up to date with security patches.
The Register breaking news

Google exempts self from Apple rules

Google has admitted using forbidden APIs to get its iPhone application working, but despite that admission the application remains available on iTunes in apparent breach of the store rules.
Bill Ray, 26 2008
The Register breaking news

Copyright-bothering web TV outfit rises from the grave

TVCatchup.com, a web-based TV recording service which was shut down last year under pressure from broadcasters, has returned, and this time it assures us it's legal.

UK.gov abandons income splitting tax law

The government has dumped legislation intended to overhaul income splitting arrangements among individuals that would have effectively forced small, family-run businesses to pay more tax.

Intel details objections to antitrust probe

Intel says it is unable to respond to the European Commission investigation into its business practices unless the regulator gives it access to certain documents from AMD.
The Register breaking news

The Legacy Dilemma

In IT circles, the term ‘legacy’ is generally banded about as a kind of shorthand, to suggest that a system or application has reached a certain point in its existence where the only way is down. There is no concrete definition – well there is if you browse the 'net, but it tends to reflect the above (for example, “a system which has been superseded but which is still in use”). Which isn’t really much help in system planning.

Nokia N96 16GB smartphone

Review As the muscular successor to the N95, it’s no surprise that the N96 packs in a flagship set of high-end features.
The Register breaking news

A Geeks Guide2... Christmas - Part 1

GG2 Welcome to the first part of our trilogy of Christmas goodies. With St Nick expected to turn up in less than a month, those of you who have yet to get your act together for the holidays (much like us) are in for a treat. We’re offering up to 40 per cent off the list price on a host of books from programming to chocolate, from goddesses to the good Doctor himself. All will be revealed over the coming weeks…
The Register breaking news

Peaches Geldof - she's back!

Peaches Geldof has returned to the virtual pages of Nylon, having copped a savage shoeing for her first dip* into hackery.
The Register breaking news

How can effective IT drive business?

Reg Event What is it: A Free, live, interactive Regcast you can join from your PC or Mac
The Register breaking news

DARPA wants to develop an 'iPhoD'

The maverick military mayhemware mavens of DARPA have once again sent ripples of sensation oscillating through the world of acronyms, as they ask the US tech community to build them an "iPhoD".

Nokia launches DIY phone design studio

Off-the-shelf phones are so old school, according to Nokia. So it’s launched a build-your-own-talker website where you can create your very own phone, sort of.
The Register breaking news

What’s driving collaboration?

Thanks, folks, for your responses to last week's collaboration poll. Jolly interesting reading it made too. It puts the lie to all these people who claim social tagging tools and microblogging are taking over the business world. They're not.
The Register breaking news

Bear/woods alert: Entire world not quite virtualized yet

We asked, and you told us. Virtualization is making its presence felt, but not in a way that would make an evangelist faint with excitement. Instead, it all looks rather sensible, with just over 60% of the hardy poll-completers telling us they are pretty active across the board when it comes to virtualizing environments which support non-critical workloads. It’s around half that level for critical workloads. Hang on, that’s actually quite a lot isn’t it? Fair enough, we know that the relatively advanced practitioners are more likely to respond to this kind of poll, but even with this bias, we can see that they’re not going mad with it.
The Register breaking news

MySociety puts e-democracy up for sale

Digital democracy charidee mySociety* is flogging two places on its annual retreat to anyone who wants to know more about open source, government technology and access to data.
The Register breaking news

Aussie government muffs plans for internet filtering

Plans for filtering of all internet content in Australia could well backfire on the Labour Government, with talk of "socialism" banned, and muffins off the menu entirely.
The Register breaking news

Nominet fingers governance scrutineer

Nominet has appointed management academic Professor Bob Garratt to conduct an independent review of its governance structures as it aims to steer though a crisis prompted by member unrest and pressure from Whitehall.
The Register breaking news

ISS drinks dispenser now taking the p*ss

The International Space Station's cantankerous Water Recovery System (see pic) is now apparently up and running following a few issues with the unit's Urine Processor Assembly (UPA).

Yes! It's the USB Toaster!

Register Hardware’s hacks are always tied to their keyboards, so going into the kitchen to prepare the morning toast is a right royal pain in the bum. So imagine our collective glee when we discovered this little number.
The Register breaking news

Microsoft ranks 5th on inglorious spam-friendly ISP list

Microsoft is the world’s fifth worst spam service ISP, according to a new list compiled by Spamhaus.org.

Tosh touts 16GB Micro SDHC memory card

Toshiba has followed in SanDisk’s footsteps and launched a 16GB Micro SDHC memory card, the largest capacity of Micro SDHC currently available.

WIN a Vodafone Dell Inspiron Mini 9 netbook

Competition Dell's Vodafone-powered Inspiron Mini 9 HSDPA netbook scored 85 per cent in our review, and now Vodafone, Dell and Register Hardware have teamed up to give away one of these little beauties and three months' airtime.
The Register breaking news

The mobile operators' Three Ring Trick

Comment A classic magician’s tricks is to flash three solid steel rings then hand them to a punter to examine before spinning and linking them as though metal passes through metal.

Amazon intros early VAT cut

The government’s VAT cut doesn’t take effect until Monday, but one online retailer just couldn’t wait and has already introduced it.
The Register breaking news

ASA slaps beer-punting ladyboy

The Advertising Standards Authority has ordered Tiger Beer UK Ltd not to rereun an ad which featured a rather fetching snap of a ladyboy punting the Asian throatwash.
The Register breaking news

Porn doctor jailed for 33 years

A Florida doctor has been jailed for 33 years and nine months over child porn offences.
fingers pointing at man

Dell zeroes in on US customers with 0% financing

Dell is offering its US corporate customers zero per cent financing to encourage them to buy more products in what has been a tumultuous year for the computer giant.

Sons of Macintosh - shaking the Apple family tree

Report Card, Part Three When the original Apple Macintosh debuted in 1984, it carried a $2,495 price tag - roughly $5,250 in 2008 money. Ever since, the debate has raged over whether Macs are more expensive, feature-by-feature and capability-by-capability, than their PC brethren.
The Register breaking news

FBI warns NY officials of Thanksgiving Day terrorist plot

Happy Thanksgiving holiday, United States. Here's your first helping of holiday terrorist panic.
The Register breaking news

Google - your source for FREE Adobe gear

Analysis With his ill-fated defense of Google's multi-million dollar Yahoo! handshake, chief legal officer David Drummond told Congress the search engine tie-up would rejuvenate the Yahoo! web with "better, more interesting ads." It's a common Google refrain. If you believe the party line, Mountain View's top secret advertising money machine rules the roost for one reason: an unswerving commitment to "quality" ads.
Cade Metz, 26 2008
The Register breaking news

Srizbi spam botnet in failed resurrection

After being stranded for weeks, a monster botnet responsible for an estimated 40 percent of the world's spam was able to briefly reconnect to its mothership in a tense international duel playing out online that could have a dramatic effect on the amount of junkmail flowing into inboxes everywhere.
The Register breaking news

Selfish worm targets month-old Windows flaw

More than a month after Microsoft issued an emergency patch for a Windows vulnerability that allows for self-replicating exploits, researchers have spotted a wave of new attacks in the wild that target the critical flaw.