28th > April > 2011 Archive


Middleware hotshot to bake biz-friendly apps

Alfred Chuang, who brought the TCP/IP stack to the original IBM PC, ran several software product development units at Sun Microsystems, and was one of the founders of middleware software maker BEA Systems, wants to take another crack at business software.

PlayStation Network credit cards protected by encryption

All credit card information stored on Sony's PlayStation Network was encrypted, the company said one day after warning users their user names, passwords, birth dates and home addresses were stolen in a security breach. “The entire credit card table was encrypted and we have no evidence that credit card data was taken,” Sony representatives wrote in the update, which was posted late on Wednesday. “The personal data table, which is a separate data set, was not encrypted, but was, of course, behind a very sophisticated security system that was breached in a malicious attack.”
Dan Goodin, 28 Apr 2011

Yahoo! Finds! Buyer! For! Doomed! Delicious!

YouTube co-founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen have found something to do with some of the $1.6 billion they made selling the service to Google, buying bookmarking service Delicious from Yahoo! Inc.
Richard Chirgwin, 28 Apr 2011

YouTube to launch paid video-on-demand service

YouTube is reportedly poised to launch a paid streaming movie-on-demand service with the okay of a number of Hollywood studios.
Natalie Apostolou, 28 Apr 2011

Open source Hadoop engineers may spin off from Yahoo!

Yahoo! may spin off its Hadoop engineering division, creating a startup offering support and services around the open-source distributed number-crunching platform, according to a report citing people familiar with the matter.
Cade Metz, 28 Apr 2011

US Supremes deal death blow to class action lawsuits

The US Supreme Court has granted a whopping victory to AT&T, the US Chamber of Commerce, and supportive corporations, by reversing previous court decisions that had prevented corporations from requiring individual arbitration of customers' complaint.
Rik Myslewski, 28 Apr 2011

XSysInfo memory manager

iOS App of the WeekiOS App of the Week Android devices have a memory manager utility that can show you which apps and services are running in the background, and allow you to shut them down in order to free up some extra memory.
Cliff Joseph, 28 Apr 2011

PSN hack triggers lawsuit

A gamer is suing Sony over the data breach in which the personal details of more than 70 million PlayStation Network and Qriocity users were stolen.
Richard Chirgwin, 28 Apr 2011

Footy coming to mobiles next year

The Australian Football League has abandoned the usual sports strategy of trying to play different broadcast bidders against each other for rights deals, and instead has dealt with a consortium that includes all three major outlet streams: free-to-air TV, pay TV, and internet streaming.
Richard Chirgwin, 28 Apr 2011

Farewell, Novell

The sale of former local-area networking powerhouse Novell to Attachmate has been completed.
Richard Chirgwin, 28 Apr 2011

Online PVR goes live in Australia

Beem.com.au – an online PVR service – has exited its “invitation-only” beta phase and launched services to the public.
Richard Chirgwin, 28 Apr 2011

PayPal pushes eBay earnings

eBay is celebrating a 20 per cent jump in profits in the last quarter, thanks mainly to its payment system PayPal.
John Oates, 28 Apr 2011

Royal guests free to tweet and hang out with Facebook friends

The royal wedding won't be blanketed in a smog of radio-jamming despite reports to the contrary; such a measure is unnecessary and unworkable, not to mention illegal.
Bill Ray, 28 Apr 2011
server room

More than one way to build a cloud (and there always will be)

CloudCloud The open systems revolution of the late 1980s and early 1990s, which espoused interoperability between platforms, made the various Unix operating systems the world’s most popular server platforms.

Nikon image authentication system cracked

Russian encryption specialist ElcomSoft has discovered flaws in Nikon's systems for ensuring that images have not been tampered with.
John Leyden, 28 Apr 2011

Departments reveal mobile device spending

The Department for Transport spent £1.5m on mobile telephones and related data services in the 2010-11 financial year. The department, which has seven executive agencies, disclosed that 7,757 officials were issued with mobile phones such as BlackBerrys and other 3G devices in that year.

Latvian hack's hack story leads to hack-hacking

An enraged Latvian hacker went batshit over an article criticising security at small, low-cost hosting companies and defaced the website of the news agency LETA.
Juris Kaza, 28 Apr 2011

Targeted phish frags XBox gamers

UpdatedUpdated Microsoft has warned users of Xbox Live to be wary of targeted phishing scams that attempt to hoodwink users into handing over their gamer tags and passwords.
John Leyden, 28 Apr 2011

Beyoncé sued over aborted videogame deal

Beyoncé has been branded a grinch after she decided not to endorse a dance videogame, driving the developer to sack dozens of coders in the week before Christmas.
Caleb Cox, 28 Apr 2011

Desktop Virtualisation beyond VDI

InterviewInterview Desktop virtualisation isn't just about the client, and it isn't all about VDI. Intel’s Stuart Dommett explains to Tim Phillips why there are more options for the virtual desktop than before, what Intel has been building in to its products to make those options more viable, and why he thinks it’s one of the top two or three trends in IT today.
Tim Phillips, 28 Apr 2011

The Sandy Bridge Hackintosh

My challenge from Reg Hardware: build a PC, install Mac OS X on it, and explain how you can do it too.
Chris Bidmead, 28 Apr 2011

Panasonic pledges big job cuts

Consumer electronics giant Panasonic is cutting 35,000 jobs in the next three years as it tries to reinvent itself and its corporate culture.
John Oates, 28 Apr 2011

Alcatel gets free and easy with OpenPlug

Alcatel Lucent has decided to hand out the developer version of OpenPlug free to drive more Adobe Flex development.
Bill Ray, 28 Apr 2011

Revealed: Secret security plan should Kate leave Wills at the altar

Police and spooks in charge of security for tomorrow's royal wedding have planned for every possible eventuality - including that of Kate leaving Wills at the altar. The top-secret contingency plan for a "runaway bride" scenario has been dubbed "Operation Pumpkin", and if put into effect would see hundreds of operatives switch tasks in a desperate attempt to generate a moving security cordon around the escaping future Queen - while simultaneously attempting to preserve Prince William's option to pursue and dramatically win her back.
LaHussy, 28 Apr 2011

Apple bags iCloud.com domain for $4.5m, says report

Apple has reportedly bought the iCloud.com domain name for $4.5m.
Kelly Fiveash, 28 Apr 2011
Sony Bravia KDL-32EX703

Sony brings Skype to Bravia HD TVs

Sony has released a firmware update for its Bravia televisions that adds Skype functionality as well as the ability to use smartphones and notebooks as remote control devices.
Caleb Cox, 28 Apr 2011

Guardian shuts local blogs

The Grauniad is shutting three local news blogs and likely laying off the three reporters concerned.
John Oates, 28 Apr 2011
hands waving dollar bills in the air

Atlantis promises to flush out VDI I/O bottlenecks

A company called Atlantis has come up with a new wheeze on how to deal with VDI-crippling I/O bottlenecks: detect and delete dud I/Os at the NTFS level.
Chris Mellor, 28 Apr 2011

Huawei smacks ZTE with patent and trademark lawsuits

UpdatedUpdated Huawei has launched patent and trademark litigation against ZTE in Germany, France and Hungary alleging that its competitor has been selling kit bearing Huawei's logo as well as using its technology.
Bill Ray, 28 Apr 2011

Robot moon lander airship test enhanced by iPhone app

A Silicon Valley startup has announced that it is flight testing new NASA-funded robot moon lander technology aboard a rented airship with the aid of an iPhone app intended to exploit social networking. Unsurprisingly perhaps, the company's CTO is a search engine executive.
Lewis Page, 28 Apr 2011

Rackspace backtracks over toff-proof sign-up process

Rackspace has been forced into a hasty about-turn after it emerged that it was discriminating against aristocrats, power couples and other bigwigs with a sign-up and billing process that refused to recognise double-barrelled surnames.
Damon Hart-Davis, 28 Apr 2011

Pads propel PC market growth

World PC'n'pad shipments were up seven per cent during Q1 2011, market watcher Canalys said today. And, interestingly, seven per cent of the devices counted were tablets.
Tony Smith, 28 Apr 2011

Russian security start-up kits up 30,000 state bank ATMs, terminals

Cash machine crime has created a new market for start-up Russian security firm SafenSoft.
John Leyden, 28 Apr 2011

Japanese quake flattens Fujitsu's homeland sales

Japanese IT conglomerate Fujitsu is one of several companies wrestling with supply issues in the wake of the Sendai earthquake and tsunami in March. The disaster had an impact on Fujitsu's fiscal 2010 year, which closed at the end of March, but the company ended the year as well as expected considering the issues it is facing.

Ubuntu 'Natty Narwhal' breaks the surface

If you are looking for something to do before the Royal Wedding gets under way, Canonical has officially released Ubuntu "Natty Narwhal".

Google sued over – yes – Android location tracking

Google has been sued over its Android location tracking practices, days after a similar suit was brought against Apple.
Cade Metz, 28 Apr 2011

Aus convergence review kicks off

The Australian government’s long-awaited review of the media and communications regulatory framework is finally underway with the release of an issues framing paper and a call for submissions. The review is to look at Australia's regulation of the media and communications industries. Earlier this year, its terms of reference were attacked by Australian content industry representatives for not specifically mentioning Internet copyright enforcement (although a review of the Copyright Act is also under way). The Convergence Review committee chair, Glen Boreham, said the committee was interested in receiving feedback from a broad range of Australians both within the industry and the public. "Before we engage fully in our consultations we need to ensure we have the right starting point. We also want to hear the issues that stakeholders feel are important for the review to consider," Boreham said. The closing date for submissions is 10 June 2011. According to the Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, an ‘Emerging Issues paper’ reflecting submissions to the Framing Paper will be released in late June. This will be followed by committee hearings in July. Following a release of detailed discussion papers in August, the final report is due to be released in March 2012. The Department has also named the final member of the convergence review team, Louise McElvogue. McElvogue joins Boreham and Malcolm Long as members of the three-person Review Committee. A former journalist, McElvogue is a founding partner of Macleod Media and has extensive experience advising high-profile media companies like including BBC Worldwide, ITV and the Discovery Channel on digital strategies. She was also the lead digital strategist and implementation consultant at the BBC’s groundbreaking Project Kangaroo. Although Kangaroo's video-on-demand offering was blocked by the UK's Competition Commission, it was eventually sold and launched as SeeSaw.
Natalie Apostolou, 28 Apr 2011

Mobile Active stung for Bieber fraud fever

Mobile ringtone and gaming provider Mobile Active has been busted by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission for false and misleading advertising practices from two of its subsidiaries Global One Mobile Entertainment and 6G. A Federal Court has forced the company to pay fines totaling AUS$225,000 for the offences which involved four television advertisements selling what appear to be one-off products but were actually subscription based services. The products included mobile phone ringtones from Justin Bieber and mobile games including Space Invaders. The Federal Court found that the companies generated $58,064 in revenue from the ads, and unsurprisingly the Bieber promotion was responsible for more than half of the total sales. This promo charged users a joining fee of $13.20 with the company collecting an additional payment of $6.60 every six days after signing up. While the Bieber commercial had small text at the bottom of the screen stating it was a subscription service, the court found that the text was difficult to read and the explanation inadequate. "The use of the word subscribe in my view was totally inadequate to inform the adult viewer, let alone a viewer under the age of 18, that what was being offered was a subscription to a broader service," Justice Annabelle Bennett said. Mobile Active said that it is considering appealing the decision.
Natalie Apostolou, 28 Apr 2011

Microsoft profits soar 31% on Office, Xbox

Microsoft profits climbed 31 per cent during the quarter ending March 31, thanks to strong performance from the company's Office and Xbox divisions.
Cade Metz, 28 Apr 2011

Australians believe good things about the Internet

The problem with a study like the Australian National University’s ANUpoll ”Public opinion on internet use and civil society isn’t the study itself, but the ease with which people over-interpret its findings.
Richard Chirgwin, 28 Apr 2011

Foxconn staffers cuffed for leaking iPad 2 design in 2010

It has emerged that Chinese contract electronics manufacturer Foxconn, famous for suicidal employees, authoritarian control over its workers, and contracts for Apple, last year handed three employees over to police for leaking the design of the iPad 2.
Richard Chirgwin, 28 Apr 2011