23rd > September > 2011 Archive

29

Spanish boffins unwrap anti-magnetic cloak

No, I don’t mean “non-magnetic”: if you wrap a magnet in cotton, you can still detect the magnet outside. “Anti-magnetic” means you can put a magnet inside and not detect it from the outside, and similarly, from the inside, you can’t detect outside magnetic fields.
Richard Chirgwin, 23 Sep 2011
1

Sydney Uni hosts virgin hackathon

The University of Sydney and technical publisher Elsevier are holding the first official competitive hackathon for students and professional software developers.
Natalie Apostolou, 23 Sep 2011
5

Put your hard drives into the cloud

“Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of tapes hurtling down the highway,” Andrew Tanenbaum wrote in 1996, when most people used dial-up networks and Australians couldn’t yet get ADSL.
Richard Chirgwin, 23 Sep 2011
72

Apple sued for iPhone, iPad chip 'patent rip-off'

Apple has been sued by the Taiwanese fabless semiconductor-design firm VIA Technologies for – what else? – patent infringement.
Rik Myslewski, 23 Sep 2011
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27

HP: Still choosing the wrong women

The news that Meg Whitman has taken over the top job at HP has left some in the industry scratching their heads. Sure, she was a reasonably safe pair of hands at eBay (besides splashing out billions on Skype for reasons best known to herself), but as a replacement for Leo Apotheker, she’s unlikely to be a success. That’s because HP has an identity problem. There’s no status quo to manage.
Iain Thomson, 23 Sep 2011
Acer Iconia A100 7in Android tablet
38

Acer Iconia A100 7in Android tablet

ReviewReview Hey, tablet geeks out there, do you remember what you hated most about Samsung’s original 7in Galaxy Tab? The grainy display, the glitchy software, the lack of memory, the poorly located buttons that you kept pressing by mistake?
Alistair Dabbs, 23 Sep 2011
14

Boffins play ping-pong with single electron

Researchers at Cambridge University have managed to bat an electron back and forth along a wire in a high-tech game of ping-pong that could help out with quantum computing.
Brid-Aine Parnell, 23 Sep 2011
12

Ofcom asks Arqiva to stick price on 600MHz spectrum

Arqiva, holders of a virtual monopoly on UK broadcast infrastructure, has been asked to provide indicative pricing in case anyone fancies launching some TV channels at 600MHz.
Bill Ray, 23 Sep 2011
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17

Play.com swallowed by Rakuten

Online DVD and CD seller Play.com has been flogged to Japanese web conglomerate Rakuten for £25m in cash.
Paul Kunert, 23 Sep 2011
38

Brits registering .uk domains mostly get first choice

Most Brits think it's easy to find a .uk address for their websites, but almost half admit to having settled on a domain that was not their first choice, according to a new survey.
Kevin Murphy, 23 Sep 2011
14

Oracle looking for $1.16bn, not $2.2bn, in Java patent case

Oracle is looking for around $1.16bn in damages from Google over the Java patent throwdown, and not the $2.2bn the Chocolate Factory has been whinging about.
Brid-Aine Parnell, 23 Sep 2011
46

Samsung-Apple patent lawsuit tally hits 21, and counting

AnalysisAnalysis The legal activity around Android continues to mount, with the chief antagonists - Samsung and Apple - increasing their lawsuit tally to 21. And another may follow soon, as Samsung threatens to sue to block sales of the iPhone 5 as soon as it launches, at least in its home country of Korea.
Faultline, 23 Sep 2011
7

Designer pitches game arcade laundry

One bright student has decided to merge his love of videogames with the task of laundry, creating a hybrid machine that puts a new spin on household chores.
Caleb Cox, 23 Sep 2011
Lingo iMini DAB/FM receiver for iOS
11

Lingo iMini DAB/FM iOS pocket tuner

Accessory of the WeekAccessory of the Week DAB radio: always a contentious topic given its cost and varying fidelity. But a DAB radio accessory for iOS devices and for £55 too? You might as well skip the rest of this waffle and head for the comments now. Go on, you know you want to.
Bob Dormon, 23 Sep 2011
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9

OCZ flashes its cache at hard drives

Hard disk drives are getting a caching flash wrapper if OCZ has its way. Watch out for this SSD supplier's Synapse caching flasher.
Chris Mellor, 23 Sep 2011
27

BOFH: No, the Fabinocci sequence

Episode 14Episode 14 "I'm just here to do the audit," a weedy bloke says, poking his head nervously into Mission Control.
Simon Travaglia, 23 Sep 2011
LaCie Little Big Disk Thunderbolt external drive for Mac

LaCie releases Thunderbolt HDD, SSD boxes

Good news for Mac users: LaCie has at long last made its Thunderbolt-connected Little Big Disk external hard drive available to buy.
Tony Smith, 23 Sep 2011
42

Lady Gaga loses squatting complaint

Lady Gaga has lost her fight over the domain name LadyGaga.org after an arbitration panel ruled that a punter was well within her rights to use it for a fan site.
Kevin Murphy, 23 Sep 2011
Microsoft
11

Microsoft moots mobiles with interchangeable accessories

Microsoft's R&D department has drawn up plans for a slider phone with swappable accessories, a concept previously attempted elsewhere that failed to become a success commercially.
Caleb Cox, 23 Sep 2011
17

Tech City UK quango rearranges Shoreditch

Something odd is happening in East London. Last November David Cameron launched "Tech City UK", a bid to extend the nontrepreneurial hub of Silicon Roundabout into the éléphant blanc of the Olympic zone at Stratford. (See Nathan Barleys to fill Olympic chasm). But newcomers to the area might find themselves disoriented.
Andrew Orlowski, 23 Sep 2011
1

Avast buys Android thiefbuster developer

Antivirus scanner firm Avast has acquired mobile phone theft protection and recovery company ITAgents. Financial terms of the deal, announced on Thursday, were not disclosed.
John Leyden, 23 Sep 2011
Intel Atom
7

Intel rejects Atom rename claim

Intel has denied a claim that it will change the name of its low-power Atom processor when the next version of the chip, codenamed 'Cedar Trail', ships later this year.
Tony Smith, 23 Sep 2011
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6

Oracle's UK server bellyache continues

Oracle's UK server sales continued to slide downwards in the second quarter despite a recovery across the market that was exploited by most of its rivals.
Paul Kunert, 23 Sep 2011
cable
129

MS denies secure boot will exclude Linux

Microsoft has hit back at concerns that secure boot technology in UEFI firmware could lock out Linux from Windows 8 PCs, saying that consumers will be free to run whatever they want on their PCs.
John Leyden, 23 Sep 2011
F1 2011
28

F1 2011

ReviewReview It’s a funny old sport, F1: an ever changing maelstrom of rule adjustments and technology upgrades, ensuring any given season is entirely disparate from the next. Imagine if FIFA suddenly deemed that football’s throw-ins were to become kick-ins, before adjusting the rule once more the next. That’s precisely the issue facing F1 teams where, by way of example, changes from last season to this include the introduction of the Pirelli tyre, the option of deploying the drag-reducing DRS rear wing adjuster, the reintroduction of the KERS boost, and the end of the adjustable front wing.
Mike Plant, 23 Sep 2011
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63

Rogue toilet takes out Norfolk server

The IT support chaps and chapesses among you doubtless have a few entertaining war stories regarding preposterous causes of system outages, and we'd like to offer you this fine Friday the tale of the cantankerous crapper and the company server.
Lester Haines, 23 Sep 2011
4

Red Hat signs giants to anti-VMware open-source project

Red Hat is taking on VMware with five enterprise heavyweights through a vendor-neutral virtualisation community project based on its RHEV-M stack.
Gavin Clarke, 23 Sep 2011
24

I saw Facebook's music service 3 years ago. Done properly

Three years ago I caught a glimpse of a new social network built around music. You could follow people, chat with them, and enjoy the same music stream in real time. There were many other clever things about it, such as a very slick integration of music news. But the killer feature, one that made it unique, was that you could also drop songs you liked into a little box, and keep permanently. This was genuine P2P file sharing. There were no strings attached - no DRM, no expiry, no locker (your stash was your hard drive) and no additional fees for this feature.
Andrew Orlowski, 23 Sep 2011
Apple iPhone 4 pre-order
101

45% of Android users to upgrade to rival phone OSes

Call it the fanboy effect, call it the superior user experience the device offers, but research shows that iPhone owners are much more likely to stick with Apple than are folk who've bought handsets from other companies.
Tony Smith, 23 Sep 2011
6

Who owns 4G mobile technology?

Analyst Peter Misek has been crawling through piles of patents to guess who owns LTE, with the surprise result that most of it belongs to LG Electronics.
Bill Ray, 23 Sep 2011
IBM PC
12

PC games to outsell console software in 2014

Graphics card manufacturer Nvidia claims that, come 2014, more money will be spent on PC games than on games for consoles.
Caleb Cox, 23 Sep 2011
10

Bot spanking for social network ranking

Social media types who enjoy measuring their "popularity" in the social media arena are in for a shock.
Anna Leach, 23 Sep 2011
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16

Laptops en route to Europe by rail for first time

The first batch of Acer notebooks sent by rail is set to arrive in Europe in the next two weeks, and the rail-freighting trend may soon be adopted across the PC industry.
Paul Kunert, 23 Sep 2011
Starwars Lightsaber
15

Tokyo trains get lightsabre handrails

20th Century Fox Home Entertainment Japan is celebrating the latest Star Wars release - the compete saga on Blu-ray Disc - with a funky campaign on Tokyo's train network, turning the handrails on trains into lightsabres.
Caleb Cox, 23 Sep 2011
Cat 5 cable
4

Wyse does a cloud on the desk for iPad, iPhone

Wily Wyse is offering software and a service that turns your desktop computer into a networked storage system for Apple's hand-held gadgets.
Chris Mellor, 23 Sep 2011
22

Samsung plots 3G iPhone, iPad bans in the Netherlands

Samsung is seeking a sales ban on all 3G iPhones and some iPads in the Netherlands as the South Korean giant's bitter war with Apple rumbles on.
Jan Libbenga, 23 Sep 2011
29

Missing moon rock found among Clinton's knickknacks

A missing moon rock has been found gathering dust in a box of Bill Clinton's papers from his time as the governor of Arkansas.
Brid-Aine Parnell, 23 Sep 2011
4

Second Ubuntu Ocelot beta slips in some Xen

A second, and final, Ubuntu Oneiric Ocelot beta has been served up, favoring portable computing and slipping an old virtualization face back into the pack.
Gavin Clarke, 23 Sep 2011
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46

Apple staff in UK told to cancel holiday in early October

Apple staff have been told to cancel all leave for the first two weeks in October – which would appear to confirm industry talk that the arrival of the iPhone 5 is imminent.
Paul Kunert, 23 Sep 2011
27

Mac malware uses Windows-style PDF camouflage ruse

Mac malware creators are adopting Windows malware camouflage trickery in a bid to trick users into running their malicious creations.
John Leyden, 23 Sep 2011
40

Display defect may crimp iPhone 5 shipments

The iPhone 5 rumor mill continues to churn, with today's tidbit being a report that a flaw in Wintek-produced touchscreen displays will put a crimp in shipments of the not-yet-acknowledged Cupertinian superphone.
Rik Myslewski, 23 Sep 2011
26

Xbox Live patrols hit by ugly SWAT attacks

Hackers trying to cheat the Xbox Live game network have stooped to a new low: sending hoax emergency distress calls to police with the goal of drawing an armed response to the homes of Microsoft employees. According to The Sammamish Patch news service, Eric Neustadter, operations manager for Xbox Live, was the latest Xbox enforcer to receive an emergency response from armed police. The report, and a follow-up article in The Seattle Post-Intelligencer said similar SWAT attacks have hit other Microsoft employees as well.
Dan Goodin, 23 Sep 2011
2

Ingres rebrands as Actian, tackles low-end BI apps

With the current brouhaha over Oracle’s commercial extensions to MySQL, you might expect the competition to be making a play for disgruntled users. Instead, Ingres – which previously pursued this strategy – has decided to re-brand itself and focus on lightweight applications.
Iain Thomson, 23 Sep 2011
148

Neil Armstrong: US space program 'embarrassing'

The first and last men to walk upon the moon have testified at a Congressional hearing that NASA is a national disgrace.
Rik Myslewski, 23 Sep 2011
21

How the Yahoo! homepage predicts your clicks

In the summer of 2008, at an artificial intelligence confab deep in Silicon Valley, Yahoo! senior research scientist Deepak Agarwal revealed that the web giant was using automated algorithms to select news stories on its famous front page. These algorithms, he said, had boosted click-through-rates by 25 to 30 per cent, driving millions of additional dollars in ad revenue.
Cade Metz, 23 Sep 2011
8

Experts suggest SSL changes to keep BEAST at bay

With just a few hours until researchers unveiled an attack they say decrypts sensitive web traffic protected by the ubiquitous secure sockets layer protocol, cryptographers described a simple way website operators can insulate themselves against the exploit. The recommendations published Friday by two-factor authentication service PhoneFactor, suggest websites use the RC4 cipher to encrypt SSL traffic instead of newer, and ironically cryptographically stronger, algorithms such as AES. Google webservers are already configured to favor RC4, according to this analysis tool from security firm Qualys. A Google spokesman says the company has used those settings "for years." In stark contrast, eBay's PayPal payment service favors AES, making the site at least theoretically vulnerable to BEAST, the attack tool scheduled to be demonstrated Friday evening at the Ekoparty security conference in Buenos Aires. Short for Browser Exploit Against SSL/TLS, its creators say it targets a long-documented vulnerability in some encryption algorithms that cryptographers previously believed wasn't practical to exploit.
Dan Goodin, 23 Sep 2011
18

Amazon settles sales tax spat with Governor Moonbeam

California governor Jerry Brown and Amazon have settled their long-running dispute over the state’s urge to charge the etailer sales tax.
Iain Thomson, 23 Sep 2011
20

FCC's net-neut rules now official

The US Federal Communications Commission's open-internet rules have been published by the Federal Register, and they're set to go into effect on November 20 of this year.
Rik Myslewski, 23 Sep 2011